On the menu: Grassmere Ginger Shortbread

Wednesday

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Another recipe from the Great British Bake Off: Big Book of Baking and another absolute winner (I’ve already made that chocolate fudge brownie recipe from last week again). This one is a bit healthier than the brownies (not hard), they even have some wholemeal flour in (not that I think Boy Lacer will notice and complain). I wasn’t totally convinced, making this recipe, that it was going to work, it’s extremely easy to make, just bung the ingredients in a food processor, but I could not see how the dry crumbly mix would come together in the oven to make shortbread, but it did and a really nice, slightly chewy, slightly warming shortbread it is.

Lavender heart

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Lavender is one of my favourite plants to grow (about one of the only plants I can grow and even then it’s a bit hit and miss), I love the smell of course and I love the way bees visit it. This year my lavender kept flowering relatively late and although I normally like to keep the lavender on the bush for the bees, as it was quite late and a lot of the lavender was still in bud, which is the best time to harvest for dried lavender apparently (which normally seems like you’re depriving the bees to be honest), I did harvest some.

I already had the heart embroidery, which I had been stitching over the summer (which felt kind of apt), in mind. So when the lavender had dried I made a little lavender heart. I was worried I wouldn’t have enough lavender but as it turns out I had just enough and it smells wonderful and it’ll be a great reminder of the summer over the winter.

The embroidery pattern by the way, is from an issue of the Bustle & Sew magazine.

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#craft365 days 61 – 90

Time for my #craft365 update again.

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Not much progress on my skulls over the past month, as much as it may be Halloween soon, these were originally a summer project for something I’d wear in the summer, so the incentive to stitch these is unfortunately low, although I should really stick my bum in gear because if I leave it until next summer, knowing me I’ll be finishing it sometime next October.

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Equally not much progress on my blanket, I’m getting more and more behind.

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However I have started stitching a Christmas present for Girl Lacer which is going quite well, despite it being quite a complex pattern and not the easiest to read chart. I’m not saying what it is yet or where the pattern is from, can you tell what it is?

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I’ve also been working through Nicole’s Furry Stitching class, this is my progress near the end of week 3 (I’m a bit behind on that to).

So, not a bad month.

On the menu: Fudge Brownies

Sunday

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These fudge brownies with white chocolate chips are from The Great British Bakeoff: Big Book Of Baking and have so much sugar in, they are, as you’d imagine, absolutely delicious, with a lovely chew and it has definitely quelled Boy Lacer’s recent complaints that I’d been making stuff “too healthy”, best brownie recipe I’ve tried in ages.

The Son of Sobek

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Our Rick Riordan odyssey continues with a short cross over story with Percy Jackson and Carter Kane (the hero of a series of books based on Egyptian mythology). We haven’t read the Carter Kane books yet (but will) but I couldn’t resist reading this story early, I don’t think it gave too many spoilers (or maybe it did, like I say, I haven’t read the Carter Kane books yet to know whether I’m being spoiled or not). Anyway, in the Son of Sobek, a giant crocodile is terrorising Long Island and Percy and Carter cross paths as they both try and deal with it. There was a good final fight sequence as there often is in Rick Riordan books and it’s made me want to know more, so I think the story ticked all the boxes!

**** (out of 5)

Richmond Park in Autumn (again)

I tripped and fell badly on my knee and elbow during my last run earlier this week (me – mid fall – you know how time can slow during these things – “Noooooo, my iPhone!” – yep forget the elbow I bashed badly in my (successful) attempt at keeping my phone from hitting the ground, as long as my iPhone is ok, everything is ok – I am way too attached to that thing). Anyway because I bruised my knee quite badly I don’t think it’d be a good idea to run until next week now, so instead of what would have been a run this morning, I went for a walk in the park instead and of course I took my camera.

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The wild flower patch I walk past on the way to the park is still going strong.

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Crunchy nut pods under foot.

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And the prerequisite deer, it’s still mating season and it’s like a deer equivalent of a hot nightclub out there at the moment.

And as I thought, whilst taking the photos, that it was a shame that the photos didn’t catch how noisy the park is at the moment, I took a video to, you can hear a stag bellowing and some noisy birds, some of which are parakeets (yep, we have those in the park, I love the theory that they escaped from the set of The African Queen).

Richmond Park in autumn from J Lacer on Vimeo.