Thursday, 9 January 2014

10 things

Bulrushes in Dulwich Park
  • I met up with a friend in Dulwich.  We went to the Dulwich Picture Gallery to see the Whistler exhibition.  I loved the pictures in the exhibition - the detailed prints and etchings of life alongside the river were my favourites.  It is only on for a few more days, but well worth a visit if you are in the area.
  • I had never been to Dulwich before.  It is a very pretty part of London, with a delightful park to wander around.
  • Yesterday, I went up to Cambridge to see my sister and her small daughter, who is nearly two.  I spent a wonderful morning reading books, building duplo, sorting Postman Pat's letters and cooking play food.  My sister, who is due to give birth to her second child any day now, had a chance to put her feet up and do a little bit of cooking.  When she thanked me, as I left, for coming to visit I was instantly transported back eleven years when I had two small children and my sister, who was only about twenty at the time, would come to see me and spend hours just sitting on the floor with Cam and Olivia, building train tracks, playing, cuddling and reading books.  I had forgotten what a wonderful thing that was: adult company for me, and an adored entertainer for the children.  It's a good feeling to be able to return the favour for her.
    Small niece looking at books. I love the way her hair curls at the back of her head. #poppet
    Small niece, looking at books
  • In between visits to Dulwich and Cambridge, I have been studying pharmacology for an exam I have coming up later this term.  I find pharmacology really interesting but incredibly difficult to learn.
  • Olivia was back at school for less than three days and she already had two birthday parties and a sleepover lined up for this weekend.
  • I have had a great many turnips in my veg box the past few weeks.  I am rather enjoying them, although it can be a struggle to find many recipes for them as they are seen as quite an unusual vegetable these days.  I ate one raw and discovered that it tastes very like a radish.  Who knew?
  • I baked an apple and almond loaf cake - it looks plain but tastes delicious.  I rather like cakes that do that - they seem quite classy and sophisticated.
  • Untitled
    A very pleasing new biscuit tin
  • I have a self imposed tradition of acquiring a new biscuit tin each Christmas, which then becomes a new cake tin once all the biscuits have been eaten.  M and S is usually the best source for beautiful tins at Christmas, and this year's did not disappoint.
  • I have read a run of really good books lately: The Butterfly Isles by Patrick Barkham, The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling) were both gobbled up in a few days and I am now on The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion, which is another excellent read. 
  • The cowl I knitted from leftover sock yarn has proved to be very disappointing.  It looks pretty but rolls up into a fat sausage whenever I wear it.  I think I probably should have used a thicker yarn, used a different stitch, and made it longer.  I shall go back to my default setting of knitting socks and shawls.

My newly finished cowl...

In its default setting - rolled up...


     I was very kindly awarded a Versatile Blogger award by Phoebe at The Stylish Baker. Thank you, Phoebe!  Having blogged for nearly seven years there can't be that many more interesting things left to find out about me, so I have gone with my usual ten current things instead.  If you haven't come across Phoebe's blog already, do go and have a look.  Her Twelve Days of Christmas Baking had my mouth watering all December, and I made the 30 Minute Soft Pretzels as soon as I read the recipe - they were utterly delicious.


  1. Versatile, you certainly are that.

    Thanks for the book recommendations Nancy, I'm looking for something new to read, I've read The Cuckoo's Calling but the others are new to me.

  2. Hi Nancy, Unlike anatomy, I suspect there is no colouring in revision guide for pharmacology (mores the pity). You may find quizlet a useful app/website. You enter the information you need to learn and it will create flash cards and revision games for you from that information. You also have the option to print out revision resources (e.g. flash cards) if you want something tactile. The gamification helps you forget that you are actually working... space race gets very addictive and competitive with my students!

  3. I like the biscuit tin tradition, they are always so useful to have around, we used to have a big pile of them when I was little but I always struggle to find them now. I shall try M&S as suggested.

  4. I was extolling the virtues of raw turnip only today! And being an Auntie is so much fun - love my niece and nephews (even though they are a bit too big for train tracks and stories now...)

  5. Amateur Gourmet had a recipe for a salty turnip omelette recently which is apparently amazing.

  6. Perhaps, to rescue the cowl, you could sew the top to the bottom so that the "fat sausage" stayed turned right side out ... if it's a thin yarn, it should still have some flexibility for scrunching down after that...


Even though I often do not have the time to reply to everybody, I really appreciate all your comments so much - thank you for taking the time to read my blog and share your thoughts on what I've written.