Friday, 12 February 2016

Space to spread my mind out in

Hazel Cottage isn't a large house by any stretch of the imagination.  However we do have a spare room where a couple of years ago we added a plain sturdy table in front of the window so I can have a space to create.  My sewing machine sits there and my paint brushes and pencils share pot space with sewing scissors and pinking shears.  Nearby are paints and a basket filled with bits of material for future project.  Sat on the desk too is Hopeful Bear, an old bear I bought a few years back from Fading Grace.

I love the fact that I have somewhere to paint, sew and write.  Somewhere Virginia Woolf called 'Space to spread my mind out in'.  Any projects I'm in the middle of can sit on the table and are safe until I come back. 

Sometimes I just like sitting at my table and look out the window which overlooks the back garden and watch the birds in the trees.  Even when I don't have time to do anything creative, I like to come and stand in the room and I just feel calmer. 

'I feel so intensely the delights of shutting oneself up
in a little world of one's own,
with pictures and music and everything beautiful'
Virginia Woolf

Monday, 8 February 2016

Muffins and hearts

Some weekends are just 'making' weekends.  Mr C was out on Saturday morning and I had a quiet morning listening to Radio 4 and making banana and chocolate chip muffins.  There is something so wonderful and British and precious about Radio 4.     You could be listening to a play or learning about culture or a very silly comedy.

As I made the muffins  I listened to the Reverend Richard Coles and friends on Saturday Live.  It almost felt as if it could be any time in the last 50 years or so!

Our mixing bowl is an old Mason Cash one we had found in a charity shop a few years back.

The muffins were quite nice in the end, I wasn't sure the banana I used was mushy enough though. 

On Sunday we cooked a wonderful recipe of stuffed lambs hearts.  It was a bit fiddly as you have to make the stuffing (onions, sausage meat, mushrooms, parsley garlic), then a sauce made with tinned tomatoes, red wine, flour and butter, then stuff the hearts, wrap them in bacon and tie them up with string, then cook for about two hours.  It was worth it though, they were lovely! 

Offal never looks pretty, but it makes up for this with the wonderful flavour.  I do find that these days a lot of people are very squeamish about using heart, liver or kidney, many people are even flummoxed by any meat on the bone that isn't vacuum packed and bloodless!  I do think they are missing out though.