Merry Christmas

Thankyou to everyone for their kind comments since I started this blog. Your words of encouragement have been treasured. Have a wonderful Christmas everyone. 

I will be back soon after spending some time with family and friends.

Until next time……

Stollen for Christmas

Now, what to bake when you have an excess of delicious homemade marzipan? Mmmm? Stollen of course!


I had never made it before but have eaten the Dutch version (many times). It just so happened that BBC Good Magazine, which my husband kindly brought back from London, had a Stollen wreath on the front. So of course I had to give it a go.

If I was making this as a centrepiece for a party then I would have made the wreath because it looks so pretty. But I wasn’t, because there is no party, but that won’t stop me making it, and so I divided the mix in half and made 2 scrummy loaves. All that needs to be done before they are served is sprinkle with icing sugar or make a glace icing to drizzle over the top.

Until next time….

A Miniature Winter Wonderland

Yesterday we eventually found some spare time to take a trip to the Garden Centre I visited with my parents to see the miniature winter wonderland. The children were really pleased with the surprise – I only told them that we were going to see something exciting at the garden centre, I think they thought I was telling fibs, because in general the garden centre is not a place they think there could be something for them, unless of course it involves ice cream!










A note to Rudolph

christmas tree 2008Dear Rudolph,

My kind sister has sent the children some gorgeous packets of special glittery seed in so that you and the other reindeer know where to come and be guided safely into the garden. The glitter should show up in the moon light. The children are super impressed with this because our garden is quite small, as are alot of gardens in Holland, and we have a rather large climbing frame in it which the sleigh could crash into. No need to worry now Rudolph we will sprinkle the special ‘stuff’ on the path like a landing strip – you will be fine.

Take it easy now and rest before the big night.

Lots of Love


Christmas Treats

Yummy treats from a friend in Minnesota

Just look at the fabulous goodies above, sent from a friend in Minnesota, yummy. I love the postman, well not LOVE him,  but love it when he rings the bell with goodies – you know what I mean! The little ones can not wait until we have time to make the gingerbread house, and neither can I, I am a child in an adult body.


I have been busy today finally making the Christmas puddings. I have put off making them, and then was overcome yesterday with a desire and a will to get them done but after weighing out most of the ingredients I was missing 2 crucial items: sugar and eggs. How did that happen? Never mind, the local shop had the necessary items and ta-da I have 3 puddings. We don’t eat all 3 on Christmas day, I mean we do love this delicious traditional pudding but even we can only manage one on THE day. The puddings keep for quite a while so the other ones will be used up in the coming few months.

img_5370Then I had a bash at making marzipan because I couldn’t find what Brits call marzipan in Holland so I made some. I need to make the royal icing to cover it, but I can not find any glycerine to keep the icing from setting rock hard, so I will have to ice it nearer to Christmas Eve when we will have the first slice with the essential piece of cheese.

Until next time…..

Goings on

The manic rush before Christmas started last week. My son had his school performance where he did a sterling job as a snowman. They sang so many songs I was amazed that they could have learnt them all. After the perfomance we were invited to have mince pies and mulled wine – yum. Tomorrow is my daughters turn where she too will be a snowman, she has been singing a lot of Christmas songs, and I believe her class are singing Frosty the Snowman. It should be good, 3-5year old singalongs are usually entertaining.

Both the children have had bugs this week, along with the dog. I really hope they are over it now and can enjoy Christmas. I really am not keen on sick children….!

I haven’t been up to much except rushing here and there sorting things out and looking after sick children. I have however found some time to quilt the boat wall hanging, although I am yet to add the binding, that will have to wait until after Christmas and our guests have left. 

img_3053Above is a picture of last year’s Christmas cake, I need to get on with this years now.

Until next time…..


Now before we start the photos are shocking. It was so dark yesterday and I still can’t fathom out what to do with the camera to take better shots, although I am going to find the tripod out next time to get some clearer pictures. But it’s not going to effect the light. Oh well, I will resign myself to accepting I was never meant to be a good photographer!

Yesterday the postman rang the doorbell and delivered me a wonderful surprise. I signed up for the Stocking Full o’Cheer swap and yay my partner Elaine, who lives in the US , sent me a delightful box of goodies.


I love post and I love even more boxes with surprises in them.


The stocking is beautiful, and as expected the camera doesn’t show it well.  Elaine’s has used silver thread to blanket stitch around the edge and the little angel even has a silver wire halo. The work gone into it is incredible – I hope  she isn’t too disappointed in the one I made her!



Inside the stocking were some gifts – all wrapped….


(I realise now that I didn’t photograph what was inside this tube – but there was a large pile of paper  – all different sorts, to be used in any number of craft projects)

Elaine makes charms and there was this cute charm with a boy sledging and then this cute one below which will be a sweet keepsake.

So THANKYOU so much  – it was a lovely swap to be involved with and Elaine you have made such beautiful things. Happy Christmas!

What a difference a day makes

I managed to tick a few things off my to do list so that feels good. All this despite the puppy being sick, I had to take him to the Vets this afternoon, after he spent Sunday feeling sorry for himself and vomiting a fair bit, but it appears that the injection she gave him has made him feel a bit better.

Towards the end of last week I made a couple more gifts for Christmas. These aprons are super quick to whip up and they suit their recipients just perfectly.



Maybe next time the post will be a bit longer, but i am tired and need to go to bed.

Until next time….

Weekend Frolics

I don’t know about you but I seem to have a lot of unfinished jobs lingering about that really need to get sorted out. I have the Christmas cake to marzipan and then ice, ( i bought the marzipan on Saturday), the Christmas pudding to make, a couple of gifts to finish and pop in the post to the UK, the Christmas cards to finish off and send, the children’s Christmas cards to sort out, (they signed them all today I need to put into envelopes for school)…….the list goes on.

On to other news..

My parents have left this afternoon after 4 days with us, we had a super time, and it even snowed! We went shopping on Friday and then I took them to a local Garden Centre which is better then any I have seen in the UK and looked at their stunning Christmas displays. (I didn’t take my camera this time but I am going again soon because they have a gorgeous miniature town set up that the children will just love, and I will take some shots then) On Saturday my daughter who is only 4 was in her Ballet school production of the Nutcracker – awww it was so beautiful. She was a snowflake and was wearing a beautiful white tutu – gorgeous. Then finally on Sunday we went for a ride out to Noordwijk and walked along the beach front in the sunshine. A perfect end to a lovely weekend. It was just a shame that my husband had to miss it. He will be back from Singapore on Friday though – thank goodness.

Noordwijk Strand December 7th 2008

Noordwijk Strand December 7th 2008


Until next time