Garden Project 2012


In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;


It’s nearly February!!!! So it’s time to think about what crops we want where, to give in to my daughters desire for flowers and get out in the garden and be an Earth Mother.

I quite like the planning bit, given a cup of coffee and a quiet hour to work out what we are planting, where and when it needs to go in.

This year I have been much aided by Sutton Seeds, as a bit of a novice to the gardening world, I have found their seed packaging to have been most helpful. (Yes, it’s all down to the packaging, clever people!) We don’t have an allotment, just some large vegetable boxes and this year we are enlarging one of the side beds for a bit of extra room, plus potatoes & tomatoes in large bags… It’s quite a lot of space when you add it up!  But it is area restrictive, so the fact that Suttons clearly label their seeds so well is a win/win for us.

I am of the attitude that if you can’t eat it, don’t grow it, vegetables have such lovely flowers that I don’t feel I need to cultivate flowers for aesthetic purposes, my 5 year old daughter is of a different mind, she badly wants LOTS of flowers, so we let her choose some seed packets, I told her to look out for the packets that said “Easy To Grow” 😉 but we will see.

We have a bed in the garden that is along the edge of the Koi pond, during the summer we can’t see it from the house due to the mammoth  trampoline, just now it can be seen and will be until after Easter, so we had a bit of fun choosing Spring flowering bulbs; snow drops, crocus, daffs, tulips and the like, all dwarf varieties but in a few weeks we should see a splash of colour.



My hands were shaking from the cold a little there…

So we have begun, right now the potatoes are Chitting. I’ve gone for First Earlies and a Main Crop this year instead of our usual just first earlies, mainly because I love digging up the spuds and they taste so much better!!!

My next job is digging the hell out of the bed!


No Crisps, No Chocolate? Ermm.. HELP!

No crisps, No chocolate or sweets in the school packed lunch.

It shouldn’t be so hard should it? I strongly advocate healthy eating and although once or twice a week I give in to the sausages/fish fingers and oven chips thing just so I can have a dinner where I’m not fighting my son to eat his meal and it is eaten quicker than one and a half hours!  They eat loads of fruit and vegetables and such a variety I’ve always been lucky on that score…  On a recent visit to Morrisons cafe with just my daughter, I gave her free reign to choose what she liked from the counter. She asked “Can I have two things?” I said “It depends what they are!” She was thoughtful while I told her the name of all the cakes and we negotiated the fact I didn’t want her to have crisps. She chose “The fruit salad AND the Strawberries please?” How could I refuse that?

I’ve put chocolate in the small’s lunch box once out of sheer desperation, it was tight month there was no money left and very little in the cupboard so I have them what I had.  Crisps they always had though…

From Monday, the little Lady will be in school full time, school dinners can be provided, bought in from another local school but as a family we eat a cooked dinner in the evening with Daddy.  His working hours usually see him home before 4pm.  Once upon a time I might have been raring to rise to the challenge of the packed lunch, now it just makes me scratch my head…

Head scratching out of the way I have come to the following conclusion,

A sandwich,
A small pot containing cherry tomatoes, cucumber and pepper strips.
A piece of fruit/fruit salad
A Babybel stylie piece of cheese
A carton of juice
Sometimes a yogurt
Sometimes a home made cake

We have other things lurking around in the cupboard like Humzingers – they love those and small pots can always be filled with raisins or sultanas.  I have toyed with the idea of a Bento Box, not every day just now and then, there is a great looking book on Amazon which I have added to my Secret Post Club wish list, although I might not be able to wait. It looks like a really fun idea.


I suppose what I really need is inspiration. What do you do that really works well in your children’s pack lunch? Do you go for simple off the shelf stuff or make things yourself? If so recipes please!!

As from next Monday I’m going to be making 13 packed lunches a week! It’s time to crank up the #notadomesticgoddess mode into #tryingtobeadomesticgoddess and not burn anything…


Summer Diary W2 D2

A slower start today *sighs with relief* the Little Man slept in until 7am!

We had arranged to meet a friend and her smalls in the park and so set about bundling our needs into a blue ikea bag, I did think twice about taking the wave boards but the Little Lady was insistent, I do a fairly good impression of a pack horse it has to be said.

After a mad couple of hours splashing around and a game of spot our friends in the supermarket, during which the Little Lady convinced me we needed to have a BBQ this evening, sausages were chosen (the ones Daddy likes) and finger buns, I managed to convince the Little Man we already had plenty of Ketchup, we got home in time for lunch.

Once home they did some ‘quiet drawing’…

and had lunch.

and then Mummy got brave and allowed finger painting!

A quick trip to the shops with Dad to buy coals gave me a breathing space, they came home with a new game of Connect 4, we found this in a pub recently and the smalls adored it.

The BBQ was lovely, the smalls love ‘sausage ina bun’ with the last of the home grown potatoes in a potato salad, the Little Lady diligently cut some chives for it from the pot in the garden and then snipped them like Katy does with Mummy’s big scissors.

So another day successfully negotiated, I find myself sitting quietly this evening as the OH has crashed out asleep, feeling quite calm. It’s been a good day.

The Gallery: Simple Pleasures

Simple pleasures…  a few things spring to mind… like my daughter saying to me earlier this week “Mummy my bum is eating my pants!” or the feeling when I get to put my spoon through the seal of a new jar of coffee, knowing it will make ‘that’ popping sound and then the smell reaches my nose… yum….

Can’t easily take a photo of those though…  There is something I do enjoy (very much) that is very simple and very indulgent…  A plate of olive oil and balsamic vinegar with a smattering of italian herbs and if I’m feeling frisky, some garlic salt too; then rip up some crusty bread and mop it all up.

Very simple, very pleasurable…

Please do pop over to Tara’s blog at Sticky Fingers by clicking the cup to see all the other entries.

Silent Sunday – Hot Dog!

Silent Sunday