this is lemonade

A mindful, grateful, creative life: Life constantly hurls lemons at us. I’m on a mission to make lemonade as best I can, by God’s grace.


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Aaaaah Friday!

What a blustery, cold, day… I spoke too soon on Wednesday when I mentioned drought. It’s been pouring it down almost non-stop. Lovely. I guess it’s recognisable weather for the British Isles at least :P

After seeking solace in a hearty winter veggie soup for lunch, I’m thinking of turning a roast chicken dinner leftovers into a warming chicken and mushroom pie this evening, with either roast potatoes or mash – I haven’t decided yet. I hope you will have something tasty to warm up your stomach tonight.

booties2

…and it turns out that a very very sweet baby girl was born not long after I wrote on Wednesday, so the little booties are winging their way across to her. I also thought the card I found was quite adorable, so I took a little photo of it before scribbling in it and sending it away.

I wish you a cosy and warm weekend. Take care friends! Layer on all your woolly socks and jumpers, and dig out your scarves, hats and gloves. Winter is on its way brrr! I’m so glad to be back in your heart warming company :)


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I’m coming back knitting!

Hi everyone!

Thank you for your ongoing support whilst I strayed away into the unknown since the middle of the summer that was, has been and is no longer. The weather in London is still mild and has actually been sunny and relatively warm in the last couple of weeks. I’ve even wondered whether or not another drought is on the way, crazy, I know.

Anyway, I’m planning on bringing an end to this last hiatus in blogging. And I thought I’d give a sneak peek at what woolly things I’ve been busying myself with recently as a starter.

booties_sm

Next week is National Wool Week in the UK, and I’ve been knitting quite a lot in the last month or so. These little booties are hopefully making their way halfway across the world in a matter of days, as soon as I get some long awaited news of the arrival of their intended new owner! I’m so excited, any time now!

Well, sneak peeks should not be too long, so I’m going to rest my eyes from the screen now and pick up my needles again. I’m enjoying catching up with all of your blogs in the meantime though. Have a great week!

xx


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Extract of peace

What a wonderful experience. Working at the computer doing something tedious and listening to Jamie Crick on ClassicFM. Movement 9, Agnus Dei of Eternal Light: A Requiem, by Howard Goodall starts playing. As the beautiful peaceful music floats around me, rain starts falling from the heavens. Such a balm to the soul! Aaah tedium, you cannot steal my peace :)

Quoted from my Facebook page just now… just want to share it everywhere – have a blessed week!


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Rain, rain go away…

Although there has been a fair bit of rain, with the occasional accompanying thunder and lightening, I refuse to accept that summer is over quite yet. We’ve only had about three weeks of sunshine and heat!

So, in an act of defiance I have been busy eating last night’s pasta as today’s cold pasta salad lunch with a purposeful addition of cool cucumber and cheering cherry tomatoes! What better accompaniment than a recent thirst-quenching pin!

Pasta salad

Here’s another leftovers makeover

I’m glad to see some blue skies and fluffy clouds now. A bit of rain does the garden good. The yellow-brown grass is happily reviving a little. Unusual climactic activities are doing unsettling things however here and here. And in the event that you encounter the latter, further advice can be found here.

Have a happy Tuesday evening! I hope you find some space to enjoy a bit of slow time ;)

Happy summer solstice!

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Am I the only one who blinked and missed summer?

Well, we’re on the downward slippery slide to winter now. We’re just peeking over the edge of the longest day in the year today… soon we’ll be getting out of bed in the dark and crawling back home in the dark, wondering what daylight is. What happened to those balmy summer days that became the norm following the scorching 90’s?

So far this year, I’ve missed the bursts of sunshine that brought everyone rushing out to Tesco to buy a tray of coal and incinerate a few sausages. I think my neighbour is hilarious (I’m obviously easily amused). He keeps a big half deconstructed barbecue stand thing in the garden all summer. If there is sun of an evening, he’ll be out there with a handful of coal and a couple of burgers. Five, maybe ten minutes later, he’ll have zipped back in the house with his culinary masterpiece. I’m still waiting for a window of opportunity to do my bit to help burn up the earth’s coal reserves – incidentally, that made me wonder, are there any truly environmentally friendly ways to have a BBQ?

With the sky some 100 shades of grey this week, I stumbled on a link via Facebook to the video below. I don’t know why I found it so addictive – normally I’d find this kind of video irritating, and I actually kind of do. But I think I was also in disbelief at how good they are, especially the younger sister. And those tubs, they are just hypnotising. I’m going to call up my sister and see if she’ll have a go at this with me sometime this “summer“. A spot of sunshine and some fun music to cheer up this weekend from Lennon and Maisy:

Oh, apparently Wills was born 31 years ago today. Does anyone know if he has an official birthday too, like the Queen? Apparently, according to official sources, the monarch often celebrates her or his birthday when there is a higher chance of there being sunshine, hence the official birthday. So, I’m guessing that maybe he won’t have the need to move his birthday – even consulting the Met Office won’t help.

Have a sunny weekend everyone (literally and metaphorically, if not literally, then metaphorically!) ;)


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Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny day

Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny day

Greetings all! This weekend I told you I would be baking. But it almost didn’t happen. Firstly, I decided a lie-in on Saturday would be good. It was indeed. Secondly, the weather was not the same beast as depicted in the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon, shared on Friday. In fact, it was quite different with not a cloud in the sky:

Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny dayAs a direct consequence of the aforementioned lie-in, fewer hours in the day remained for me to take advantage of the weather. There was a risk that baking would not get a look in. But it did.

The ingredients and method were really quick, simple and gluten-free to boot. I followed a recipe I pinned here, but reduced the amount of sugar included because I prefer things to be less sweet.

While preheating the oven to 180°C, I mixed together one egg, half a cup of sugar (I used granulated brown cane sugar), one cup of peanut butter and one teaspoon of vanilla extract. I initially disliked the mixture a lot. It was gooey, sugary and didn’t look like it would amount to much. But as I mixed it, my biceps ached and the goo became a delicious smelling crumby golden ball:

Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny dayThe mixture was then easily rolled into small walnut -sized balls as suggested in the original recipe. I got 23 out of these quantities. To create the cute pattern on top, I simple pressed down gently with a fork to form a criss-cross pattern. I found the peanut butter oils were sufficient to prevent the fork from sticking to the batter if done carefully.

Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny dayThe cookies only need 12 minutes in the oven to achieve a lovely crumbly texture with a very slightly chewy middle. They are very soft when they first come out of the oven, so I transferred them immediately onto a cooling rack  by pulling the non-stick baking sheet with cookies on top and sliding it over. I then sprinkled a teaspoon’s worth of extra sugar on top for a little extra crunch.

These cookies are great if you want something easy and quick. I can imagine they’d be great on a hot summer’s day, when you don’t want to spend long in a hot kitchen. I can’t say I actually know what that feels like though. Spring sunshine with a chilly breeze blowing will have to do me for now ;) I hope you give the cookies a try and enjoy them too!

Peanut Butter Cookies for a sunny day

Another great thing about these is, that they are at once salty and sweet. A great combination. Their peanutty richness also means that you don’t need to eat many with your cup of tea. I’ve still got over half left. That’s win-win-win in my book! If you made some now, we could meet for a virtual tea and cookies meet-up ;)

Breakfast Granola


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Happy Monday!

It’s dull, gloomy, grey, rainy, windy, overcast, cold… did I mention grey..? I’d love to restart the day, eat breakfast again and have another go at it. Aaahh well, not an option… how’s your last Monday of January 2013 been so far?

Here’s to a good evening! Do you have any sparkly plans? I don’t know how yet, but I’m going to try and make mine sparkly and hope the sparkles last into tomorrow!

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