Buy Buy Bookies

News everyone! news! pull up a chair, not that one it’s broken, right, are you comfortable?

off on travles

My sister-in-law and I, after much wanting to and thinking about how it would be nice some day, are officially running our own craft fair! I have a cake business and Anna (for that is her name) is into crafting so it will be a chance for us to run our own stands while showcasing other local crafters and their amazing skills. We have the venue and we’re in the process of securing stall holders now, but it’s very exciting for me and I’ll most likely blog about it again.

But what about the books you say? Well, we want to have a secondhand book stall, because frankly all events are improved 100% by having one. But do we have books we want to get rid of? Anna does, but when it comes to novels I am a bit of a hoarder and the thought of stripping my shelves and wantonly chucking them into a suitcase for other people to pour over was somewhat stomach churning.

However, I told myself, that is silly. I am approaching what you might call overfull capacity in the book department, and while I love to buy books, read books and look at the lovely lines off books in my house. I don’t like to fall over books, or have them topple of the shelves and kill me.

So I tried very hard and decided I could part with a few. These are the books I know I will never read again (and I’m not much of a re-reader anyway), or I have duplicate copies off. No offence to any of these books, it was great, but you can be loved by others now.

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How many books do you think you could part with?


PS. Elinor, I hope you don’t think it rude that I’m going to be getting rid of The Hunger Games which you bought me. I did read and really enjoy them so thanks, I hope someone else will have some hungry hungry hippo games now.

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Tip Top Teas


If I fell off a bridge, I would want a builders brew. And come to think of it the same please after a mugging, a long day in town, a long day anywhere else, or if I had just received a severe shock. Most of us can see that a strong blend, hot water and a dash of milk (no sugar for me thanks) can prob you up after just about anything.

Yet dare I say it there are other times, and other teas that I do enjoy, and these are those. meet some tip top teas.


Chocolate, Rooibos & Vanilla- someone once gave me a mug of rooibos tea after I painted much of their house, and at the time I hated it and wanted to cry, I had been waiting a long time for that tea and it did not deliver.  But as people we grow, and I have grown to enjoy this tea. Particularly this sweet chocolaty vanilla one. I drink it without milk, the same as all the teas in this post.


Peppermint and Licorice- this is one of the first herbal teas I actually liked, and it’s because of all the natural sweetness. Also these herbs are good for digestion I hear.


Black Chai- This one tastes very Christmas-y and warm, right up my ally even if it does feel out of season.

P1150364Camomile and Honey- what a wonder, I just discovered this honeyed lovely and I’ve been enjoying it before bed.


Any teas you’ve been loving lately?



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75th Cake

Every time I suggest to a customer that they might like a green cake, I get a funny look and a quick dismissal. “Green? What, like snot? Like a big horrid gunge cake? I think not silly woman, I think not.”

But Ha! This time I was given a free hand, and I thought YES! GREEN CAKE FUN TIMES AT LAST!  I knew it would look nice, it can be fresh and springy and nice and not disgusting. I told you world.


P1150315 P1150317 P1150318Gwen 

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Avocado and Chocolate Milkshake

I was alone in the kitchen with four avocados and time to kill, shit was gonna go down.


This actually tasted really nice, and I slurped it up through a paper straw while watching a period drama, I felt so Pinterest.

You will need:

1 Avocado

1 cup of milk

1 teaspoon of coco powder

a dash of maple syrup

a few drops of vanilla

Scoop out the flesh of the avocado, and add everything into a blender, blend until smooth. Keep going with the milk until you have the thickness you want, and use the maple syrup to taste. You can also replace the syrup with honey if that’s what you’ve got.


I thought this was pretty cool, and obviously a lot healthier than using ice cream to make it thick and creamy. If anyone else has avocado dessert ideas I would love to hear them.


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I Spy Butterfly

I did this cake last week for my sister in law, t’was her birthday you see, (happy birthday and all that by the way Anna) and she wanted a blue version of an old design of mine. So naturally I obliged and here it is. I have to say I really love this colour on cakes.


Here’s the old one by the way…

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Weeks 39, 40, 41, 42 & 43 of the Doodles and an Explanation

Hello Blog, good grief its been a while and I am a shocking blogger. Umm well, I have for you some of the doodles I have been working on during borrowed time however, I have not enough doodles to fill all the weeks I’ve missed, I have been rather busy this Christmas.

Now for the explanation, there will only be intermittent doodles on the blog till at least April if I’m honest. The dreaded Dissertation rears its ugly head even as a type this late at night. So normal service will not resume for this section of the blog for sometime we apologise for this and hope you will understand – I’ve been buried under paper again!

au revoir


But now some of the missing doodles- much more interesting than me rambling at you all.

House warming present for my auntie

House warming present for my auntie

Christmas day ink drawings

Christmas day ink drawings



St Swithens Gate Westminster from  this picture on Pin Interest

St Swithens Gate Westminster from this picture on Pin Interest

Corner of Stokes coffee house Lincoln

Corner of Stokes coffee house Lincoln

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Biting Talk

Attack me with your biscuits,
Bring on your custard creams,
I’ve got the biggest appetite,
That Hampshire’s ever seen,

It’ll shock you to see this,
I can never be peevish,
Can’t be unhappy,
With crumbs in my cleavage,

I take a shortbread to the head,
And you leave me for dead,
I put my fingers to my temple,
And feel the tea I bled,
A sneak attack,
A single pack,
Of amour piercing,
Ginger snaps,

“You’re looking thin”,
You tell me coldly,
As you fondle all the,
But I’ve eaten biscuits when they’re mouldy,

You can’t fool me I’m a fig roll lover,
So grab your tin and dive for cover,
If Mcvities wrapped him,
I’d eat my brother,
Rich tea? 25p?
I think I’ll go on a shopping spree,
And wade in biscuits to the knee,

Lets play a sort of cops and robbers,
Only I’ll be the gob,
You be jammie dodgers,
I’m not flinching as those bourbons,
Are used to jab my vital organs,

But the final blow,
I could not take,
We’re civilised people,
For heaven’s sake,
Not even I would dunk,
A Jaffa cake.


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My To Be Read List

Those books of patient virtue that sit upon my shelf, just waiting for me to be in the mood for that kind of thing.


I am, I will confess, a bit free and willie nilly when it comes to buying books, one will not do when I’m out on a bookie bender in my local charity and secondhand shops. And why should it when the prices are that dam good? (Though to the shame of my thrift I did recently spend 8 quid on a new book that I’m sure I could have got for about 75p if I’d just rummaged in an Oxfam for long enough. I as feeling wild.)

And yet I endeavor to keep a handle on my TBR pile because I certainly don’t want stacks of books that will never get my attention, it seems nice and manageable at the moment, and here is what I’m looking forward to:


The Old Curiosity Shop- I bought this from a general corner/secondhand book shop in Scotland while on holiday. I wanted more Dickens than just Oliver Twist under my belt since I did enjoy that. The shop keeper said it was a good choice.


The Mysterious Island-I got this in a sale at the Works when I was feeling a bit bookless, it looks like a good adventure.


English Passengers- I got this in Malvern in the summer, I’ve go a bit of a thing for novels set at sea it seems.


The Winter Queen- This is the first of a detective series (gotta love them),a good friend of mine gave me another of the series a couple of years age because she loved it so much and I wanted to go back to the beginning and see how it all started.

Has anyone read these books? And what is in your to be read pile?

Love love, Kiss kiss and all that,


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The Quest for “Love Actually”

Love Actually you say? How can you need that film, don’t you have that already? And the wondrous line: Its on Netlfix. I do not personally need this film, though I have never seen it, we have been trying to find this film for ages for my Auntie who has also never seen it but does not have access to a computer or the internet.

So today (Christmas Eve) we finally completed the saga that was the Quest for Love Actually… After searching high and low in two cities and about eight different shops we finally found a copy of it.

My parents searched the HMV in Lincoln and all the charity shops they could find and could not find it, today very early in the morning mum and I went into Birmingham town centre and began the hunt again.

You may have just gasped and slopped tea (or coffee if you are that way inclined) down your self at the sentence, major shopping centre on Christmas Eve?!!?! is the woman mad? Surprisingly the Bullring was no where near as busy as I thought it was going to be, it didn’t even get to Saturday level busy. And we took the precaution of leaving at about 8:45 and there was no queue for the car park.

But Anyway, I digress. So we hit HMV in Birmingham and after searching all around for it in the Christmas films section and then in comedy and then in drama we couldn’t find it so we lassoed a pink shirted bunny and asked her did they have it. After taking us to where the elusive film was last seen she went and checked on the computer systems and reported back that actually had minus 1 copies of the film.

How you get to minus 1 I don’t know but we toddled off greatly disappointed and searched BHS when I spotted they had a small collection of DVD’s. Now only big blockbuster new releases and the old favourites are expected in BHS, Love Actually this time of year surely they would stick that. But no, t’was not to be dear reader. Gloom set upon us, nowhere else could we think to find a selection of DVD’s that might contain a single copy of Love Actually.

And then Lo! we saw WHSmiths. Perhaps maybe we might be in with a chance here. After a small hiccup when I thought they didn’t have a DVD selection, I found a small selection of top seasonal releases. I searched and searched and I tell you there was no Love Actually to be found, not even for ready money! I was on the point of giving up and flouncing out of the shop a thwarted young woman (I’ve never liked the idea of being a damsel, it seems one should be a pot of jam) but then, it caught my eye I stand I had missed. I began to search and there on the second half of the first shelf at the end, sitting very quietly was Love Actually. I did that thing that they do in the movies when you reach out and snatch the last item off the shelf, I did that though there was no one next to me.

But I found it – I felt like King Arthur and the sword in the stone, it was a momentous occasion that my giddy little half skip and then fast walk to the till was fully justified in but I must have looked a tad stupid to the rest of the shoppers.

au revior and Merry Christmas!


P.S. This does denote I have returned to the blog. Doodles will follow…eventually

P.P.S. I have just identified from the noise that my eldest brother often known for his grumpy demeanour is watching Brave. One is most amused :)

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Cheese Cake!

Hiya! I made this yesterday for a cheese obsessed 8-year-old, it went down well and inspired me to get the kids making sugar mice out of fondant as a Christmas activity.


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 And if you’re wondering, I baked two round cakes and chopped off the sided to make a wedge shape, stacked and iced them, and used the rounded end of a rolling pin to make the cheese holes.


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