April 2009


I am going away for a bit,

to my native country of cinnamon buns and spruce trees



I shall spend some time in the countryside and some in the town and some on the sea. I am going on a mini cruise to Riga in Latvia, which I am much looking forward to, as I have heard they have a market occupying old German zeppelin hangars. This intrigues me. Grocery stores and markets are usually where you find me when in a new country. Glued to the shelves with the strangest looking tins and the most suspicious looking oddities. I will be back soon, with new found energy, ideas puffing around me like little clouds of smoke and hopefully also an etsy sale!



The weather has turned to the worse (or better if you sometimes like a bit of gloom, like myself) and the sandwich family as we tend to call ourselves, for reasons many years forgotten, has retreated to their little fortress of making cookies, drinking hot drinks and rolling ourselves up into furry little balls, like such:


I made the cookies using a recipe from the Swedish cookbok Systrarna Voltaires Mat (The Food of the Voltaire Sisters) but this is a quintessential Swedish recipe and you would find it in most Swedish books involving cookies. I swapped the egg brushed on the top for soy milk and used non pareils instead of the compulsory pearl sugar (large grain sugar) of which I have currently run out.


Have a lovely day!

Since I’ve been spending a fair amount of my latter time tucked under blankets, disarmed from some of my dearest weapons; the pen and the brush, it’s good that I have a couple of old treasures up my sleeve, waiting to be read. “Looking at Nature” by Elsie Proctor is just so rich in all ways and I know I would have been the happiest girl standing if I had owned this adorable book when I was in my pre teens, as hands-on-biology/nature studies would have been one of the few things that could have possibly torn my head away from my murder mystery books(!). Oh, and then there’s “A General History of Pirates” by mystery man; Captain Charles Johnson. A big 1724 book that describes the lives of some of the most notorious pirates through the ‘golden age of piracy’ which, not the least, features female Irish villain below, named Anne Bonny.


Despite the blessings of reading-candy I have told myself I have to get well soon because in a week’s time I’m heading off to my native Scandinavia for a while, so there is just no time to rest for the wicked. Illness always seems to strike at the most inappropriate of times, don’t you think?!


Neither the weather, nor these pictures that I took earlier today when out in the garden, bear even a trace of resemblance to my current state, but I braved the sprung spring and sunshine for a few moments, before I quickly snuffled and coughed myself in again, realising that cheerfulness is just not for me this bright April Monday.


I am feeling terribly poorly but with sufficient tea, soup and lozenges I only might come through to the other side soon.

This is more how I feel: 3396057256_271204230b

(picture from flickr)


A little peek into what I’ve been up to. The wardrobe is another street find and I am redoing it into a cupboard for all the unsightly bits and bobs I have in my work room. I’ve painted the outside and dressed the inside with wallpaper and monsters. The plan is to make shelves out of recycled wood pallets to keep all my boxes on. Have a happy happy Friday and an ever so invigorating weekend!


Oh dear, no luck with the easter fancy baking mentioned in my last post. I used, or rather, was inspired by (I tend to make changes in recipes, not always to the better, unfortunately) Peggy Porschen‘s basic fondant fancy recipe from “Pretty Party Cakes“.


But it all went pear shaped and they didn’t even taste very good. All too sugary and nothing else for my taste. All in all; a complete disaster.


The other day I found this baby version of the china swan that I got earlier and which is currently housing some grass for my lil’ blue bloods to nibble on. But this baby swan (which, as you can see, has already been inaugurated by the duchesse) has become the perfect water holder for ink and gouache painting etc. Apart from that we’ve been getting along with some spring gardening . We’re sowing spring seeds and making a fence for our forest plot. I’ll post pictures when it’s ready. I am still work-room-less and so forth turning the whole house upside down with paper, paint and fabrics, but I’m working on that one too and sooner or later it all has to come together!


We’ve picked daffodils including my favourite actaea and its fragrance is filling the room as I am writing this.


I have already overdosed on sugary sweets and chocolate


and tomorrow we’re doing some eastery fancy baking and, very likely, some more candy eating.


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