My first quilt made with love was the result of discovering a chest filled with quilting material collected over many years. Continue reading →
We celebrate Thanksgiving in New Zealand a day earlier than those in America, due to the time difference. We just want to wish you all a very happy thanksgiving!
There is so much to be thankful!
Blessings to you all!
9 pretty herb bouquets in New Zealand.. can be a great alternative..
Herbs bouquets can be a wonderful way to decorate your home this Christmas! I am trying to be a little bit greener and this is a great way to do it.
First, here are some different herbs with red berries from my garden. The other great thing about using herbs in your home is they not only look good, but also smell amazing!
As you can see I love using my ironstone jugs and mason jars. I am happy to have now found a great use for this vintage silver trophy cup, which had been sitting in a box for years. Do you have any silver trophy not been used at your place?
Herb bouquet with irises
A wonderful way to bless a friend is give them a bouquet of herbs and flowers when they come around to visit.
Herbs are really easy to grow, even inside. See my post about growing them in tin cans on your window sill here
It is really easy to buy herbs these days in the supermarkets, at the market, at a plant nursery, garden shop. When you plant them most of the time they grow without much attention. Some water in the summertime if outside, but water all year around if inside. You do have to keep picking them otherwise they grow into flowers and seed. But, the flowers and seeds can be pretty as well.
I am growing a rosemary topiary for Christmas, see my post about it here. They make really lovely Christmas decorations or a gift for a friend.
Thanks for reading my post!
Have a blessed Sunday … Havelock North, New Zealand. It is another beautiful spring Sunday here in Havelock North. Thinking of everyone who are preparing for Thanksgiving this week.
Here are some shots of my post I am working on for next week…aren’t they beautiful!
Roses from my garden
Feel so spoiled to have all these flowers growing in my garden. I am blessed!
Have a blessed day wherever you are reading this!
A very easy fruity desert cake recipe made in New Zealand…
The fruity cake recipe comes from New Zealand cook Dame Alison Holst. I love her recipes, they are a great favourite for us Kiwis, so easy to follow and wonderful results.
This cake is going to be served a lot over the holidays, as fresh fruit has come into season at the berry farms near us in Havelock North.
Fruity Dessert Cake
Serves 6-8 people (depending on your slice size!)
¼ chopped walnuts, toasted almonds or toasted hazelnuts (I don’t add nuts as you never know who has allergies these days)
1 TBsp white or brown sugar
150g (5 oz) butter
1 Cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 ½ cups self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1-2 cups cubed or sliced ripe, raw fruit*
½ cup berries (optional)
*Suitable fruit includes peaches, nectarines, plums, apples, pears, kiwifruit, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, boysenberries. Drained canned fruit may also be used.
First, choose whatever nuts complement the fruit you are using. Toast them lightly under a grill or in the over as it heats to 180 degreesC(350 degreesF), then chop finely, mix with the 1TBsp sugar and put aside.
Melt the butter in a microwave bowl or pot until just liquid. Add the second measure of sugar, the eggs and vanilla and beat until blended. Sieve the flour and baking powder onto the mixture, then add half the nut and sugar mixture.
Spread it evenly in a buttered or sprayed 23-25 cm (9-10 in) round (preferably loose-bottomed) cake tin.
Next, prepare the fruit, slicing it or cutting it into 2 cm ( ¾ in) chunks. Arrange the pieces, skin-side up, (I took the skin off for mine) in the batter. Sprinkle with berries then with the remaining nut topping.
Visit to apple orchard
We have so many orchards here, shots from a recent visit to my brother’s orchard.
Wattie’s canned boysenberries
I have made this recipe with different fruit and berries, but today I didn’t want to make a trip to the supermarket, (are you ever like me can’t face yet another trip to the supermarket?) so I used apples I already had and a can of Wattie’s boysenberries (these berries are often grown here in the area, canned by Wattie’s)
Bake at 180 degreeC (350 degree F) for about 45 minutes, until the cake mixture has risen round the fruit and browned lightly, and the centre springs back when pressed.
Finally serve it warm, cut into wedges, sprinkled with icing sugar, if you like, with a whipped cream, yogurt or ice cream. I actually do like it cold as well.
Thanks for reading my post! I hope you get a chance to try out this recipe – let me know if you do!
Welcome to Thursday! It’s a beautiful day to walk the dog in Havelock North, New Zealand!
I took Rodeo our fox terrier puppy out for a walk this morning, in the neighbourhood. It is such a beautiful spring day, the sun is shining and the birds are amazing. I wish I could record all the native tui lovely melody, with their loud flapping wings. We saw some quails and native wood pigeons.
These native Pohutukawa trees are everywhere. Love their red flowers!
These large palm trees are amazing. Our native wood pigeons love to live in these. The tree across the road from us must have about 20 of them living in it – it’s very noisy!
Back home checking out the garden and the weeds!
This is a beautiful bramble white rose in my garden. It is so large that it’s held up by old wooden support structures.
Thunder, Lightening and Hail
I have to laugh we had such a lovely walk and now as I type this post up the weather has changed dramatically. There is thunder and lightening outside, we probably only get this about 5 times a year in our area. It is also hailing!
I am sure it won’t last long and the sun will come out again. It will be back to being a beautiful day. Have a wonderful Thursday!
We are going to be celebrating Thanksgiving in New Zealand with Rhubarb Custard Pie…
We moved to Havelock North, New Zealand just over 4 years ago, but we still love celebrating Thanksgiving as a family here. In America we always travelling down to spend Thanksgiving with family in St Augustine, Florida. It was a great time of gathering together and of course an abundance of food. I associate Thanksgiving with pies, pecan, pumpkin, sweet potato, never rhubarb custard pie. What’s pies do you always have for Thanksgiving?
When I got to thinking about our Thanksgiving here in Havelock North in a few weeks, I started looking at my pie recipes and came across my Grandma’s Rhubarb Custard Pie.
I have some rhubarb growing in the garden so I thought I would try the recipe out.
Rhubarb Custard Pie Recipe
Choose your favourite pastry for the crust. I use Chelsea Winter (New Zealand Chef) sweet shortcrust pastry recipe available here.
Grease an 8 in/20 cm pie dish and line with your pastry, flaky or short.
2 level cups of finely sliced rhubarb (do not peel)
1 Tbsp. melted butter
2 level tsp. flour
1 scant cup of sugar
Beat the eggs, add melted butter. Mix flour and sugar well, add to the eggs, beat until light and fluffy. Then stir in the rhubarb.
Pour the mixture into the pastry-lined dish.
Bake in a hot oven 425degrees F, 220degrees C for 10 minutes. Then reduce the heat to 350degrees F, 180degrees C for 40 minutes or until firm to touch.
The recipe says to eat it hot with whipped cream, we loved this, but it was just as nice the next day cold. The rhubarb is quite tart in the pie, but it balances out well with the custard.
Earthquakes in New Zealand
We had some severe earthquakes in New Zealand last night, only felt one but it was scary enough.
Thanks for reading my post. Hope you get a chance to try my Grandma’s pie!
Succulents in teacups, little pots….
When asked to have a table at a Christmas craft fundraiser for an Alzheimer’s Day Care I immediately said yes. I had a few months to get prepared so I started collecting succulents of all species. Asking friends and families for cuttings, raiding gardens whenever I saw a succulent. Then I hit the Thrift stores collecting teacups, little pots and any pot that looked pretty and was a reasonable price.
I even experimented making some concrete pots painted with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Duck Egg. My son Elisha helped me making them, we certainly had fun, but that is for another post!
Then I collected tin cans of various sizes and brought some burlap and twine to decorate them. Using a hot glue gun I stuck the burlap on the tins. I even made my own little tags.
This was a really fun project as I love succulents. They have become so popular, probably because they live inside and outside and are very hard to kill.
It took some time, doing all the preparation. But I finally got all the succulents into the right teacup or pot and left them outside to grow for a few weeks. I had to kept them watered regularly as it was hot outside, fortunately they all survived and made it to the Fair.
Don’t they look beautiful?
This is my favourite succulent, called Jelly Bean or Pork and Beans.
Check out some of these cute teacups
Some pretty pots
The tin cans with tags
And of course my concrete pots painted with chalk paint.
The day was an incredible success and a lot of fun. Fortunately I only had to bring one home!
Thanks for reading my post. Please come back to find out more about life in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand.
Feeling blessed this Sunday to be living in Havelock North, New Zealand. Celebrating Spring!
Today is just beautiful and I look out our front door and see Spring.
Flowers in the garden.
Even our palm tree looks colourful.
A Beautiful Moon
And then to end the day a beautiful full moon comes up as we look out from our deck over the hills of Havelock North.
Feeling blessed in New Zealand!
Wishing you all a blessed Sunday!
I love the look of; dear I say it, elegant tin cans, as a herb garden on my kitchen window sill. Upcycling tin cans as herb garden indoor or outside can look wonderful. Here are a few tips on how to do it and what you will need: o Potting mix from garden center (garden read more