when life gives you lemons…

..make lemonade.  And it couldn’t be simpler when you have an OXO Good Grips citrus squeezer in your drawer.  Chief Taster E happily squashed and squeezed our lemons before mixing in some sugar and sparkling water.
”mmm delicious Mummy.  Can I make apple juice now?”.
So we did.
Cold pressed apple juice and plenty of arm exercise to boot!
collage-oxo-lemon-squeezer-copy-4bIn the days before children I would have happily made all sorts of things to try out my new lemon squeezer. For today making lemonade will suffice but other favourite recipes where it would certainly come in handy are:  lemon cream surprise, gluten free lemon drizzle cake , lemon curd sponge cake, Quinoa tabouleh and Elderflower cordial.

Disclaimer: With thanks to Oxo Good Grips who sent us this lemon squeezer to try.
I was not required to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are my own.

October 10, 2016 at 3:52 pm Leave a comment

first day at school

Full of excitement. Fearless.
collage-first-day-at-school-copy-4bHe never wants to take his uniform off!
In typical E fashion, taking it all in his stride.

And always excited to see his brother again.

September 23, 2016 at 11:38 am 2 comments

barefoot bliss in Porlock

Oh to be 4 again!

Early mornings, late nights and nothing but free-range, barefoot fun in between.

September 20, 2016 at 12:19 pm 1 comment

wordless wednesday

2010 Aberdeen roses

September 14, 2016 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

a forager’s paradise

We visited dear friends recently who have a private arboretum at the bottom of their garden. I was in forager’s heaven collecting elderberries to make a vitamin C packed, cold busting syrup and reminiscing about allotment harvests.

E was in boy heaven collecting sticks to make a fire and making up games to play with the beech nut seeds he’d collected.

Life is so simple when you’re outdoors.  E didn’t want to play with any of the toys he’d taken and was occupied so happily with his big friend H, especially as Chief helper in the chopping of wood.

Previous blog post reminders for things I could have made with these foraged delights.

Damsons5 ways with..a ton of damsons (dambeena, muffins, chutney, jam, bottled)

Haw berriessaucy haw ketchup

Apples5 ways with..a ton of apples (brie baked, cordials, herb jellies, mock goose bake, chutney)

Blackberries and elderberrieshedgerow jelly


September 13, 2016 at 11:30 am 1 comment

and another new haircut…

All ready for school next week, looking so grown up! 

We had a practice run with getting dressed yesterday and then E helped to stick all the name labels in his clothes. It took much longer than doing it on my own but it was a lovely opportunity to chat about playing at school and making new friends.

There are so many thoughts that run through your head as you ready yourself and your child for starting school.  One of my favourite bloggers, Hands Free Mama, summed up so perfectly in a redrafted version of her poem “Come as you are“, some of the wishes and worries I have for our gorgeous, quirky little fella.

(written by Rachel Macy)

Come as you are.
Come with your quiet strength or shaky confidence.
Showing up either way takes bravery and practice.
Don’t let fear stop you from saying yes to life’s invitations.

Come as you are.
Come with your mistakes, your goofiness, your humanness.
People will love you more for it because then they can be real too.

Come as you are.
Come with what you love about yourself—whether it’s your hair, your handwriting, your smile, or the way you stand up for friends. Come with what you love about yourself even on days you can’t find anything. By showing up, you just might make that important discovery.

Come as you are.
Come with what you want to hide. Come with what makes you feel insecure.
I promise the person sitting next to you has insecurities too.
Together you can bring those hurts into the light of day where they can no longer hold you back.

Come as you are.
Come with your obnoxious laugh, your funny sneeze, your out-of-tune voice. Come with what makes you YOU. You might not realize it, but someone breathes a sigh of relief when you show up.

Come as you are.
Come with your decision to pay no mind to the haters. Refuse to let their jealousy or toxicity sabotage this moment in your life. Keep shining. Someday you’ll look back and be glad you didn’t let someone else dim your radiance.

Come as you are.
Come with your dreams, no matter how silly or outlandish. You are capable of those dreams. I’ve seen you in action—there is no limit to what you can do.

Come as you are, and offer the same acceptance to others.
Come with one kind thing to say, especially when people are staring at someone and talk is cruel. Come with kindness, and it will come back to you in ways unimaginable.  

Come as you are, just as you are.
Resist the pressure to conform.
Resist the pressure to be like someone else.
Be your beautiful, radiant, one-of-a kind self.
There is nothing more freeing than loving yourself “as is.”

Come as you are, you don’t need to change a thing—not today, not ever.
Come as you are; let your inner light invite someone else to come forth “as is.”
Come as you are, a living beacon of hope.

I couldn’t wish more for him.  ”Come with what makes you YOU. You might not realize it, but someone breathes a sigh of relief when you show up.”

Follow Rachel’s blog for more inspiration for a hands free life

September 10, 2016 at 8:49 pm Leave a comment

The Gower (in pictures)



(daytime sandcastle building at 3 Cliffs Bay.  Tea time stone skimming and ice-cream nomming at Port Eynon)

September 9, 2016 at 2:36 pm 3 comments

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Welcome to my once-about-gardening-and-cooking blog that is now mostly about our life in Gloucester with a boy, a baby and 3 cats.

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