Friday, 27 November 2009

A Visit to The Christmas Shop

It's that time again...the time of year when the small village hall at Hooton Pagnell is transformed into the most wonderful Christmas Shop for just four days, thanks to a lady called Angela Durdy.

This morning I met up with Carol, one of the lovely ladies from my Learn to Crochet Workshop last week, who had not heard about the Christmas Shop before. First, we visited the yard...

where pieces of vintage garden furniture are displayed alongside beautifully planted pots and containers...primulas and hyacinths....

decorative garden pieces too, like this star...

...gorgeous cyclamen, wire baskets, trugs planted with hyacinths and, of course, Christmas trees!

To complete the festive scene, a pair of robins arrived to join us...the small speck on the ridge tiles between the tree tops is one of the robins!

Next, we crossed over the road to visit the indoors part of The Christmas Shop.

Although it was a lovely, bright morning, it was far too chilly to sit outside! The entrance looked so inviting with its gorgeous display of Christmas trees, holly and door wreaths...

Past this beautiful rose door wreath hanging on the big, open door...

and we're in!

Welcome to The Christmas Shop brimming with wonderful things to see, buy and these delicate, crocheted bird decorations for the tree and a festive fireplace with vintage finds and goodies on the hearth...
...stitched hearts and stockings on the tree...

wintery, frosty, sparkly baubles and decorations...

alongside vintage pieces of pressed glass!

We sat down for a little while for a cup of coffee and a delicious homemade mince pie (the pastry was superb!) and then had another look around...vanilla candles alongside wreaths and garlands made with cinnamon sticks, chillies and orange slices...

and then, after a couple of purchases, it was time to go home! What a lovely morning and how lovely it was to meet up with Carol again.
The Christmas Shop at Hooton Pagnell is open for two more days if you are lucky enough to live nearby - Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th November, 10am-6pm.

Bye for now,

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Christmassy Parcel

Now that I know it has arrived safely, I thought I would share a photo of the goodies that were in the Christmasy parcel that I sent to Laura in New York, whose name was drawn out of the hat for my Facebook page giveaway.

I am so glad that Laura was pleased with it!

Bye for now,


Sunday, 22 November 2009

Learn to Crochet Workshop

I had such an enjoyable day yesterday in the company of five lovely ladies who attended the Learn to Crochet Day Workshop that I first blogged about back in September (where has all that time gone?).

What could be better on a dull and damp Saturday than to spend the day crocheting!

I took plenty of wool...

We had coffee, flapjack and choc chip cookies...learning to crochet is such thirsty work!
I am annoyed with myself that, having remembered to take the camera, I did not take any photos of the workshop in progress...I was far too busy! The leftover homemade choc chip cookies disappeared very quickly when I returned home last night - thanks to my hubby and a teenage son who is always on the look out for food!
I made roasted root vegetable soup with homemade bread (wholemeal, granary and tomato & herb) for lunch. I had some of the leftover soup for my lunch today...mmm, yummy!
I took a selection of English cheeses (Somerset Camembert, Stilton, Cheddar & Wensleydale) with apples, bananas and grapes. We all sat down together around a large table that had been beautifully set by my dear daughter, who did all the kitcheny things, which allowed me to spend the maximum amount of time teaching the lovely ladies how to crochet. She looked after us all very well indeed.
We had tea and cakes in the afternoon - chocolate sponge, fruit cake and lemon drizzle buns!
I am so pleased with how things went, especially as it was the first time that I have organised my own workshop day, and I was delighted with the feedback I received from the five lovely ladies that attended. One of those lovely ladies was Carol, who had found out about the workshop through my blog, and you can read her very kind comments about yesterday here. It was such a pleasure to meet Carol and the other ladies, who are all keen to hear about future workshops and sessions. My mind is spinning with all the exciting watch this space to find out what is next!
Bye for now,

Thursday, 19 November 2009

It feels like Christmas...

I've received the most amazing Christmassy present...from somebody that I hardly know! A lady from church has given me some vintage Christmas decorations...lots of vintage Christmas decorations! I am such a lucky girl!

Beautiful glass baubles, some decorated, some Christmas crackers, a wooden reel of wire...
Father Christmas, bells...
...a cute little cottage...

...and these delicate glass and, what looks and feels like, mother of pearl decorations - a butterfly, watering can and chandelier!

It seems that nobody in the lady's family wanted these old decorations and she was concerned that, when something happens to her, they would just end up in a skip somewhere. She found out about my love of 'old things' and thought they would have a good home here. Oh yes, they most certainly will...I love them!
Back soon,

Sunday, 15 November 2009


No, this is not a post about baking, but bath sponges!

My rugby-playing teenage son asked me to buy him a new sponge - understandably so, as his existing one was falling apart and a rather unattractive shade of brown, despite having been in the washing machine!

Once at the supermarket, I have a choice of small, round white sponge or small, round pale blue sponge - neither of which are going to last five minutes with the amount soil he brings home on his body after each of his many rugby sessions throughout the week! A couple of aisles along, I stumble upon these:

...ideal for the car, boat, caravan, home...and rugby playing son! 2 for 50p - bargain!

Has nobody thought of making a "man sponge"...something that comes in a shade of brown or black?

Oh, yes...and a self-cleaning bath, please!

Bye for now,



Friday, 13 November 2009

Edible Delights....or not?

Last weekend, when I was staying at my parents' house, I tried Dragon Fruit for the first time. I have often admired its vibrant pink skin on the supermarket shelves and was expecting some kind of luscious pink flesh with tropical fruit flavours...
but the flesh inside is a pale greyish colour with black seeds...
and, as my niece said "it doesn't really taste of very much, does it?" Edible, but not delightful!

I came across this growing under one of the buddleias in the garden...
and it looks delicious, like it would be perfectly at home alongside a crisp rasher of bacon and a poached egg on toast for breakfast! Delightful, but is it edible?

On Wednesday it was time for my Felt, Fabric & Crochet Christmas Decorations Workshop and, as I always take homemade cakes with me, I decided that it was time for the first batch of mince pies...
...edible and delightful!
Bye for now,

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Finding my feet on Facebook...slowly!

As you may have noticed from the side bar, my little business, rebeccamaryjane's, is on Facebook! To promote my page a little, I am having a Christmassy-themed giveaway - why not take a look Everyone who becomes a fan by 15th November will be entered into a draw to receive a small Christmassy parcel, which will include one of these:

Christmas Pudding Brooch

Well, I really must go now...more Christmas Puddings to finish and then I must return to the kitchen to add candles to the chocolate cake I've made for my lovely hubby, whose birthday it is today, and begin preparations for our small celebratory dinner tonight!

Back soon,