Random stuff

Recently I bought 100 Great Breads by Paul Hollywood and this is the first loaf I made from it.  This is a Guinness and Treacle Bread, made with 150ml's of Guinness.  Anyone who doesn't cook with alcohol or like the smell/taste of Guinness wouldn't like this bread - it does have a slight bitter taste from the Guinness but I was very happy with the results. The yeast when wild when it met the Guinness and I had the most lively yeast I have seen in ages!

Yesterday I finally got around to watch Homestead Blessings: The Art of Breadmaking (by the West Ladies) and learnt a few tips from the the DVD. I plan to copy some of the recipes, in particular their pizza recipe and the most delicious cinnamon scrolls. Just watching someone making bread is useful.

Card making

When I was in Sydney visiting Clara, I discovered Copic Sketch Markers. I had heard of them, but never seen them in action - now I'm hooked!!  Below is my very first attempt - Clara and I spent an afternoon colouring - the best way of reducing stress and have fun!  Colouring was a favourite activity when I was a child and I still love to do it  - its fun.

Here is my second attempt (below) - still need heaps of practice with the shading and blending.  The "stamps" I am currently using are "digi stamps" that you can obtain free from the net or pay a small amount for.  There is a large variety to select from.
 This is my third card - wasn't as happy as my second card but not bad for a learner!!
These two below (which the scanner chopped off part of the flowers) are 2 of five cards I'm making for my mum as part of her birthday present.  They will be placed on cards, but I haven't got that far yet.  These I didn't want a perfect blend of colour, I wanted a more modern look.

Other random stuff

I always to get teased at work (in a nice way) about the colour of my tea.  Anything wrong with this?  I know you aren't meant to add milk to Jasmine tea, but I like it.
My mum is very unwell at the moment so I sent her a cheery card.  She can't make cards any more nor write so she directed her Thursday carer (who comes so dad can go out and do all grocery shopping) to make this card.  I have it displayed on the kitchen counter next to the mandarins so I can see it when I am cooking.
Hello sleepy Charlie. . . she is my mouse catcher and each morning after a cosy night on the bed she goes outside and returns in less than an hour with a baby mouse . . . which she eats for breakfast.  She comes inside and eats her "second" breakfast.  Goes off to bed for a sleep . . . all day long. The life of a cat in my house.


 AND . . . this is the last week of JULY.  Where is my year going?

Happy week ladies and gents AND don't forget, let God drive and you be the passenger (but not the back seat driver).  He does a far better job!



  1. I thought the second card was GREAT!!!! I got some of those cards given to me, and now I don't know who to give them to! They are too nice!
    Hope you have a great last week of July - we are SO looking forward to warmer weather!

  2. I also have watched the Homestead Blessings bread making DVD. Not as useful for me as some of the others but still inspiring. I'm not sure I would like Guinness bread but your loaf does look great!
    Lovely pictures in your header - the bouquet of white flowers just a little reminder that summer is not too far away!

  3. You are so clever Jo (and Clara) :)
    Those cards look great! Sorry to hear your mum is not well:(
    have a great week too!

  4. Ann - I didn't learn anything really new, but I did find a quicker way of making pizza dough that only rises once - I was rising mine twice and now I won't. I bought it ages ago when I was learning to bake bread, I am really past the DVD stage. Never-the-less it was interesting. I own two of these DVDs, the other one is sewing. Which ones do you own and found most useful?

  5. Jo: I don't really like alcohol in my food, so I wouldn't like this bread ~ though lemonade gets yeast pretty crazy too. Tried it with scones. Mmm. Lovliest scones.

    Digressing. Great cards! ☺

    And the only thing I really cat stand about cats is they will hunt baby anythings. I don't cope. lol ☺ Clever Puss!

    Have a great week.

  6. Ganeida - we have tried to rescue the baby mice but this caused Charlie to get very upset (it was like we weren't accepting her "gifts") - now she eats them fast or makes sure they are headless!! Can't tell me cats don't think things through. AND it isn't because she is hungry - she has food waiting for her, she just likes mice for breakfast. Sometimes she will "call" Ruby to the window so she can look at the catch. Of course Ruby is an indoor cat so will never be able to "catch" mice!!

  7. Enjoyed seeing your progress with copics - I think you're doing exceptionally well!! I really like those two flower images you did - they are very well done!

    I can hardly believe July is almost over... I can't keep up!!


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