New Years Marmalade

It’s the time of the year for marmalade, the Seville oranges have been in the shops and thoughts are directed to making a years supply of marmalade. The reason for this sudden desire to slice 6 pounds of oranges is two fold. It tastes better and it’s cheaper!

For several years now I’ve put the oranges in a food processor to chop them, but this year I decided to slice by hand. Oh my word, I was so surprised how pleasant it was to sit and slice the oranges by hand (with a nice serrated steak knife) in the quiet. A very simple life thing to do, and it was easier to extract the pips too!

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Once the sliced oranges have soaked over night they are meant to be simmered to reduce the liquid by a third. When I had heated the the water in the pan and added the sugar I realised I hadn’t done that!!!

I managed to rescue it by taking some liquid out, adding more sugar and a bottle of liquid pectin. Here on my pantry shelf are twenty jars of marmalade. I now feel like Moomin Mama and I have a very happy husband!

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It tastes exceptionally good too 🙂

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New Lamp Shade

One of my projects last week was to make new a very tatty lampshade.

I have a collection of used stamps and I have loads that I have accumulated that are no use in my collection, so the new project began.

After the laborious job of soaking the stamps of the paper of the envelopes, it was a fun and satisfying thing to do.

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What do you think?

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Now for the job of restoring the lamp base! 🙂

We Made a Pond

We just went outside one day and collected everything together, gradually placing things where we wanted them. The only thing we actually bought was a couple of pond plants! 🙂pond-1 pond-2 pond-3 There’s a frog under there!pond-4 pond-5There’s still a bit to do, but I’m happy 🙂

Yellow Chair

I am very happy to report the continuation of furniture preservation in my garden.

I now have a yellow chair! I decided that this chair couldn’t be left any longer and needed attention….

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and I am quite happy to tell you I painted it yellow.Yellow Chair 2
I am really enjoying the brightness in my garden as the sunshine has been very limited lately, so now I have my very own bit of sunshine 🙂

Home Grown Chicken for Dinner

Well, this is a huge sense of achievement. We’ve just had one of our own home grown chickens for dinner. These are three more going in the freezer. One small step towards self sufficiency! Girls for laying, boys for eating 🙂P1380113
We pot roasted one (which I forgot to photograph to show you) and this is a risotto with some leftovers. I also plan a pie or pasty for tonight and then make some stock for some soup.P1380114
This makes me happy! 🙂