A beautiful vibrant bunch from my dear Himself for Valentine's day.
He has never missed a year since we first met.
Baking or cooking
Leek and Potato Soup - thick rings of freshly washed leeks.
My favourite recipe at the end of the post***.
A couple of years ago, I bravely set off sans Himself
and took the boys to Galloway for a week.
We visited Wigtown, sadly not during the book festival
which had concluded the day before we arrived.
However, we feasted our eyes and senses by visiting all the bookshops
carefully lifting, sniffing, feeling the books.
Delighting in the quotes and the quirks
finally retiring in a bookshop that served delicious hot chocolate
with a side dish of the written word,
We have two cats, each a 'little purrson' in their own right.
Pepper is effusive, enthusiastic, a bossy team player,
a leader, a supervisor, is vocal, demanding and insistent.
And then there is Pan.
A quiet, determined, independent and shy princess.
We hold our breath if she chooses to sit on our lap,
we tell each other if we've been allowed to stroke her,
so when, be still my beating heart,
my dear Pan decides to sleep near my desk while I paint,
I take a photo - because I don't know when
I will next be blessed by her company.
...Is not pink...
Eldest reached his 19th milestone in March,
19 years ago we lived in Africa,
19 years ago, we lived on an avocado and guava farm,
19 years ago I gardened carefully to avoid snakes,
19 years ago I had a small blonde baby
who now is tall and serious and amazing.
You know when you are out and about,
looking out of the car window,
rain streaked and misty.
Your eyes drag across the passing scenery,
seeing yet not seeing.
Then suddenly something catches your gaze,
grabs your attention,
forces you to screech
and demand a stop.
(This usually startles Himself to do the perfect emergency stop ...)
Then, a sweet smile and an innocent request
to reverse .....
so you can take a photograph
of a pig with a hat......
Our walks, pre-dog, usually had some mud involved.
Now, with dog, mud is guaranteed.
Even a simple constitutional walk
now has mud as an integral ingredient....
Favourite mug or cup and saucer
Not one that I use often during winter,
it tends not to keep my drink warm.
I prefer using it in summer when herbal infusions
hot or cold
and look a lot prettier
No, during winter,
give me chunky thick mugs
built to last
built to hold gallons
of steaming hot tea!
My own choice
In the small town of Coldstream, Scotland,
we had driven around the back of the town centre,
looking for parking.
Having found a quiet little road, lined by quaint shops,
we chose to potter around this un-touristy area
rather than the more populated and visitor-centric main street.
We visited a lovely little museum,
topsy-turvy charity shops,
a dusty bookshop,
walked passed traditional houses
and a vernacular pub.
A little further along, we discovered a small park
with a narrow but vigorous stream gurgling through it.
On the bridge, this sign.
Not 100 metres from said pub!
***Leek and Potato Soup
Gently heat oil in heavy based pan, add a chopped onion, 225gms of chopped potatoes, I leave the skins on and 3 medium leeks - washed and chopped.
Cook for 3 - 4 minutes until everything starts to soften and look glossy.
Add about a litre of vegetable stock and bring to the boil.
Season and simmer until all the vegetables are tender.
Removed from heat, cool slightly and whizzzzzzz until as smooth as you like, gently re-warm. Check seasoning and add if you need to.
Serve in warmed bowls with crusty bread and a flourish of coarsely ground black pepper - yum yum yum.