Sleeping beauties

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Is any one else addicted to taking pictures of their children sleeping?  I can’t stop! Is it because I love them best when they are sleeping? Perhaps!  They melt my heart with their sleepy breathing, peaceful little squeaks AND,  most importantly, their adorable cuddling! Beth co-slept with us until she was ready for her own bed and now Arthur sleeps between our bed, his sister’s, in the sling, on a sheep skin rug, in his push chair, in his sisters dens.  Really where ever he finds himself tired, he falls asleep.  He even enjoys the odd nap in the water at our local swimming pool.  

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This picture was taken the night Arthur was brought home from the hospital.  It is a family favorite!

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Aviatrix baby hat

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Beth’s birthday is at the end of this month and the plan was to knit her a new winter hat.  She picked this yarn from a spring sale in our favorite store a few months back and at the start of September I cast on the Aviatrix baby hat.  I really enjoyed knitting this hat in a smaller size for Arthur during the summer.  However, as I started getting into knitting it I started to notice this hat was no way going to fit my sweet four year old daughters delicate head.  It was wide enough but just too short.  Luckily, I have a robust 5 month old son who has a lovely big boy shaped skull and, would you know it, this hat fits him perfectly.  Beth kindly said her brother can have this one but she wants a matching one so it’s back to the needles for me.  Thankfully I have a ton of TV to watch.  Graham and I are working our way through homeland (it is ACE!) and so the next few weeks of night time knitting is planned out for me.  Then I need to think about how I’m going to make Beth a bunny outfit for Halloween.  Oh, and I have a teddy bear picnic birthday party to plan.  And I agreed to do a jam making demonstration at our local harvest festival.  Ha! How can I possibly go back to work in April?Image

Jam, pickles and chutney

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My word! It has been a week of picking, cleaning, boiling, sterilizing, and canning.   The fruit and vegetables growing in our garden are slowly plodding along. We’ve had a few tomatoes, the odd bell pepper, and strawberries, but our leeks, onions, beetroots and garlic wont be ready to enjoy for another while.  So last weekend we raided Graham’s Parent’s green house and came home with a few fat cucumbers, tons of tomatoes, several turnips, and one Arthur-sized marrow.

The tomatoes were quickly turned into pasta sauce and put in the freezer, the turnips went into soup, and the cucumbers were sliced, salted and pickled.  Next year I’d really like to make some dill pickles.  Martha Stuart recipe looks lovely.

On Sunday morning walk we found a large clutch of wild raspberries and picked as many as we could carry.  Beth was very keen to help with the picking but couldn’t resist her share.  Nevertheless what did manage to come home was washed and turned into raspberry and ginger jam.  I didn’t follow a recipe as such, I just boiled the raspberries then after two minuets added a cup of caster sugar and three grated chunks of stem ginger.  It seemed to work out fine since the fruit had been picked only hours before and it isn’t too sweet.  I’m not sure what the difference in America is between Jam and Jelly but in the UK Jelly is something you eat with ice cream at a birthday party.  Jam you spread on toast or put in your oatmeal.

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And finally! In the buzz of canning on Monday a friend and I each picked 1.5kg of wild Brambles.  Which turned into Spicy blackberry chutney.  Sorry for the AWFUL picture quality! The jars have been labeled and will be given to friends and family for Christmas gifts.

Now what to do with that huge marrow……….?