Victoria Sponge Cake….

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Yesterday I spent a lot of time in the kitchen, our friends were coming round in the evening for a visit so I decided to try a different lasagne recipe, and it took me hours!!  It did taste delicious tho, so I will keep that one up my sleeve for future special occasions, or when I have bags of time to dipose of :-).     I also made a quick and simple  wee sponge cake, think i’ll make this one at easter too it looks pretty 🙂

If you have little kiddies they would absolutely love this… but it’s also good for us big kiddies too 😉     The above picture was the only slice left this morning, I managed to get a quick picture before my son scoffed the lot!

Here is the recipe..

  • 6oz Butter or Margarine
  • 6oz Caster Sugar
  • 6 oz Plain Flour
  • 3 Eggs
  • Dash of Vanilla Extract
  • Icing Sugar
  • Sprinkles
  • Micro Chocolate Eggs

Method:

I use my food mixer

  • Cream the butter and sugar together until pale light and fluffy
  • Add the eggs one at a time and  mix well
  • Add the flour and vanilla extract until thoroughly mixed
  • Pour the mixture into a greased/lined cake tin
  • Bake in the oven @ 170 degrees C for 20 minutes
  • Remove from Oven and allow to cool on a wire rack
  • Mix up your icing sugar and cover over the cooled cake, cover with sprinkles and scatter a few little chocolate eggs over the top.

My Daughters Cowgirl Themed 16th Birthday Party!

My daughter will be 16 on the 22nd July.

This weekend she is having 5 friends round for a birthday party here at the house, a cowgirl camping out themed party and I have a heap of organising to do for it… 

My other half wont be around much for the next 2 weeks, he is working flat out so this leaves me with more or less everything to do…

Today I am planning to erect the 8 man tent! … goodness knows how on earth i’ll manage that, I remember every time we went camping it took us a good couple of hours to suss out how to put the thing up!    Now where did I put that big groundsheet? its been a good few years since we’ve used the tent  🙂

We went out shopping the other day and picked up balloons and streamers all adorned with 16,  also some glitzy sparkly hanging things that I can decorate the tent with, tablecloth, napkins, plates and cups, all 16 themed.   The little pink organza party bags are made up and good to go, they contain a cupcake cell phone charm, sparkly beads, a lovely hair clasp, a small bag of thorntons sweeties and a bottle of nail polish, hopefully the girls will love them.

I will over the next few days be posting quite a few recipes, of all the things I make for the party, what have I let myself in for 🙂

A Trip Down Memory Lane….

I took the kids to Pittencrieff Park in Dunfermline today, and it truely was a trip down memory lane for me, I used to live in Dunfermline for 24 years until I got married and moved away to the village where I now live..

Many a time my friends and I would spend time down the glen, long summer holidays spent there.   Some of it still remains the same as I remember it, the only real big change is the animal enlosure, now boarded up and closed down, which is a great shame.

At the bottom of the glen, which lies at the foot of the Old Dunfermline Palace, there are lots of caves and hiding places, some with historical interest… like Wallace’s Well

 

Just along the path from Wallace’s Well is this lovely bridge….

Pittencrieff Park or “The Glen” as it is known affectionately by the local populace extends to 76 acres and was given in trust by Andrew Carnegie to the people of his birthplace, Dunfermline.

Before it was purchased in 1902, by Andrew Carnegie, Pittencrieff Park formed the estate and grounds of the house, owned by the lairds of Pittencrieff. 

Pittencrieff House Museum

Pittencrieff House Museum is a historic house with a difference. The 17th century shell has a 20th century interior. Although there is no furniture, there are 3 display galleries with beautifully plastered ceilings. Here you can begin to discover, among other things, the history of “Dunfermline Toon”, who was Dunfermline’s giant and what clothes were worn in those days. The story of the house reveals a number of owners, the last of whom was Andrew Carnegie. He never lived in the house however, and eventually gave it to the citizens of Dunfermline.

Formal Gardens

  

Laid out, colourfully in front of the Glass Hall conservatory is a Formal Garden. In days gone by this area was used by Pittencrieff House as a kitchen garden and orchard. Now developed round the laird’s walk with its own breathtaking vistas of the Abbey and Palace ruins, the garden is a kaleidoscope of colour throughout the spring and summer. It is a peaceful, relaxing setting in which to idle away the afternoon in the warmth of a summer sun.

Greenhouses

Completing the formal gardens is the 200ft Glass Hall conservatory. Built in 1973 on the site of the old conservatories the present structure is divided into three sections. The main area with its wooden bridge over the running stream and its regal display of flowers creates for the visitor an entire new world, the exotic plant world. Distributed throughout the three areas the visitor can see on exhibit plants from many countries. Look out too for the exhibit which features the fossilised trees.

We took a wander around the formal gardens which were full of beautiful flowers….

     

  

  

  

From the formal garden you can look over towards Dunfermline Abbey..

  

I enjoyed my trip down Menory Lane 🙂

Cutting back the Conifers

Last night after we had eaten our Tea, we ventured out into the garden once more.    I wanted to get all the dead weeds lifted up from the driveway.    I had sprayed them about 10 days ago with weed killer, so the kids and I all got a pair of rubber gloves on and tackled the weeds.   

Because my driveway runs along the bottom of a neighbours garden, we tend to get all their plants growing through the fence and it looks rather unsightly, so I pushed as many as i could back through the fence, then I got the loppers out of the shed and cut the remainder of them all away..  it looks so much better.

Next on the cards was the front and side lawn, so out came the lawnmower and I got the grass cut, then proceeded to take the mower round to the back garden, my daughter volunteered to cut the back lawn, so that was a big help…. ableit she moaned the whole time she was doing it!

Because we had the loppers out, I thought it might be a good idea to cut the conifers at the side of the chicken coop/run,  back a little bit to let some light through, my son gave me a hand with this, he really enjoyed himself!

We will put the cut down branches to good use, they will be used as pea stakes, so my son stripped the branches of foliage and we will be keeping the long thinner ones.. there were quite a few chunky branches, i’ll keep these for late summer when we have a BBQ and have the chimnea fired up,  and i’ll use those to burn.    I know that pine wood crackles quite a bit, but we dont mind, as it will be used outdoors.   The rest of the foliage, will be bagged up and taken to our local refuse disposal point.

Another good lot of jobs done!

Yellow Flower

Yellow Flower (Taken in our Woods)

Originally uploaded by T o w n i e

Yesterday my daughter and I took the dogs up into the woods, that are beside out house, its a fair old climb up to the top, but once your there it is absolutely stunning.

My daughter took this photograph, with my camera, whilst I was throwing sticks down the big hill, for the dogs to tire them out.

I think its a fantastic capture, she even managed to get a wee midgie in the picture too 🙂

Chicken Little’s Gone Broody!

Our wee Bantam “Chicken Little” has gone broody, she is quite happy sitting inside the Eglu on the nesting well…, in the last 2 days I moved her off to lift the eggs..   Today I posted a thread on the forum  www.neeps.co.uk asking what normally happens when one of your chookies goes broody on you, just to find out what I should do etc etc..

Now, as a result of this post, (and Julie’s reply 🙂 )   We have decided to buy some hatching eggs and put them under Chicken Little.   My daughter and I had a browse through ebay today and I have let her pick the breed and I’ve put a bid in for some …… now bearing in mind she is 15 and likes all things girlie… she chose these………. because they were white and fluffy!!

 Miniature White Bearded Silkie’s 

I’ve ordered chick crumb, and growers pellets and i’m looking to either buy a 2nd hand coop, aquire one through freecycle (a long shot) or make a small poultry arc myself.

The kids are going to love it 🙂  not told my OH yet tho LOL – he’ll be fine about it i’m sure 🙂

 

Time to Start Sowing Seeds

With me being off work this week, and my greenhouse back up and running we took a trip to the local garden centre today to buy some potting compost and seeds..

We got a good deal on the potting compost.. its John Innes Potting compost and we got 3 sacks for £10.00.

We also bought the following seeds… just to get us going..

      

     

     

 

We also bought some flower seeds

Birthday Cards Galore…..

I have a day off on holiday from work today, stacks of cards on order, so thought what better a way to spend a morning than sitting at my craft workstation with the sun streaming in the window, making cards 🙂

I’ve got the cat lying on the far edge of my workstation and a springer spaniel (mits) at my feet, the birds are singing good style outside and its such a lovely sound to hear.

Here are the cards that I have made today..

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This card is themed around Hibs football club, a small picture of the club mascot, with a few layers of clear embossing powder to give it some shine…the colour green running throughout with the DCWV Cardstock and the wee guy’s name and age cut out using the cricut machine.

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This card is for a girl., and her brother wanted to give her a card themed around Celtic Football Club, so I managed to find and emblem, gave it several layers of embossing powder and mounted the pictures on circles cut out with the cricut, she will be 8 on her birthday so I built that in too and just so that it wasn’t too much OTT with the football stuff, I incorporated some flowers to surround the number 8.. I do hope she likes it.

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Next on the agenda was this girlie pink card.. I cut out a 4.5  and a 3.5 inch flower on the cricut, the smaller flower I took one petal at a time, spread with pva glue and then encrusted the petals with clear rhinestones, I did one of the petals in self adhesive pink gemstones.  Then I added some ribbon, a pink striped Heidi Swapp chipboard, a couple of flower brads and I made up a wee tag with Happy Birthday on it.

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Next was this card, its for someone at work who’s 50 on her next birthday, I still have to finish putting the happy birthday and her name on the plaque at the bottom of the card.

The card was made using a lovely white and silver backing paper, then I used a light pink shimer cardstock and ran it through the cuttlebug using the floral fantasy folder, a Heidi Swapp chipboard picture frame, a heidi swapp material flower and a yellow card for the centrepiece finishing it off with some lovely American Crafts Elements lush Pink Ribbon.