Friday, 8 February 2013


This week started with a rare visit from my big brother. He works over in New York and only gets over here a couple of times a year so it's always an excuse for a get together. Mr K cooked a fantastic three course Sunday lunch and it was lovely to regress into brother and sister roles with mum, dad and Little Sis joining in the banter. The noticeable difference from our usual gathering was the absence of Big Sis. Her nineteenth birthday was on Monday and this year was the first time she hasn't been at home - I wasn't going to let this be the first year she didn't have a home made cake. Big bro had business appointments in London on Monday so he was charged with cake delivery duties. You can imagine how thrilled he was to carry a 'Keep Calm and Eat Cake' tin from Staffordshire to Euston, meeting to meeting, but it was all worth it for us to see her and her lovely friends tucking in via the magic of Skype.

Happy birthday my gorgeous girl x

Midweek I had to give a presentation about a project I have been working on in school for the last three months. Now - I can talk. In my mum's words 'I can talk the hind legs off a donkey' ( if anyone can tell me what that means I'd be truly grateful!) But when it comes to talking in front of a group of peers, however prepared  I am, I get the dry mouth syndrome. 'Try just concentrating on one person' - uncomfortable, 'pretend you are practising in a mirror' - nope, 'imagine they are all naked' - what, hold on, no that's definitely weird. I got through it, I actually quite enjoyed it, but boy was I relieved when it was over. I came home that evening and immediately poured myself into some crochet therapy by making a cute little camera case!

(I am now pilfering wool from my long suffering unfinished ripple blanket to make quick and easy stuff - must stop doing that and actually finish big project first)

Then came Friday. I love Fridays. I finish at lunchtime, meet up with mum, have a good old natter and follow up with some serious 'seccy' shopping. We are lucky in that our respective towns have a supply of around six or seven charity shops and we have both developed a keen eye for what we like. With mum it's usually 1) a skirt (apparently you can never have too many), or 2) a book (ditto). With me it's whichever way the wind is blowing. Today it was the turn of this

My thought process went like this.
Q:What's that? A: a double boiler. 
Q:What on earth do you do with it? A: heat things slowly 
Q: I wonder if any one uses these any more A: doubt it very much
Q: How much is it? (screeeeech - this is the part where any logic goes out the window
A: £2.50
It's fate was sealed. It had to be mine. What else can you even buy for £2.50 these days? And after all Mr K loves his porridge - I would be doing him a great disservice by not buying it. 
I bought it.
(If anyone has any top tips for what you can actually do with these they would be gratefully received!)

 Alongside my purchase was something I can always justify. A selection of Ladybird books.

I particularly love the 'What to look for ...' series and would like to compare the Ladybird version with real life when Spring and Summer finally get here. I wonder if I'll see anything like this?

Wouldn't that be fantastic?

I'll leave you with the February page of my calendar.

It's a detail from 'The Hare and the Hedgehog' by German artist Gustav Sus. I'm not familiar with the story but there's definitely a class issue there!

Have a wonderful warm weekend. 
Jane x


  1. What is it?? Is it a saucepan within a saucepan? I was thinking it could be a ban marie (is that how you spell it), melting chocolate over hot water or even some sort of fondue thingy. Intriguing!!

  2. I thought chocolate would be good but cheese - ooh yes please!

  3. I just found your blog the other day - I think I followed your comment from Karen at Sew Many Ways? Anyway, here I am. I'm pretty sure you use a double boiler for making steam puddings amonst other things. I have a picture of Delia in my head and she's using hers for her Christmas pudding.

    1. You know I've never actually made a steamed pudding - I'll definitely have to try one out now. Thanks for popping over - lovely to meet you x

  4. Ooh those Ladybird books are lovely aren't they? I remember when my children were small and went to millions of birthday parties a Ladybird book was THE (very affordable and always loved) present to take along! I still have a few of our favourites and won't part with them! Some of the stories I can recite by heart I read them so often to my 'babies'....
    Mrs Tibbets, going shopping, wasn't pleased enough to purr,
    Kitties, please, she said quite crossly, how can Mummy brush her fur?
    ..... sorry, got carried away!!
    Angie x

    1. That's made me chuckle - I can just imagine the picture but now I want to know if Mrs Tibbets cheered up!

  5. Oh how wonderful to have thrift shops! they don't seem to be the in thing in France! (yarn shop neither!!)
    I always thought double boilers were for melting chocolate or steaming puddings. I have a fondue set but it's just one pot that is heated over a flame, much the same as a camping stove. If you do use it for cheese I have a good tip for cleaning it afterwards (as melted cheese STICKS) - fill with cold water and leave over night then scrape with a flat wooden stick, the cheese will come off in a yucky lump. To avoid this very same 'cold water melted cheese yucky lump' phenomenon taking place in the stomach the French alway recommend drinking wine when eating melted cheese. Apparently the wine 'dissolves' the cheese making it more digest. Personally I'm game for any excuse for opening a bottle of chardonnay!

  6. ooh that cake looks so yummy, lucky big sis! My mum still has a double boiler and always uses it when melting chocolate. I say anything that involves chocolate has to be a good thing, right?
    Happy weekend,

  7. Cake looks great! I'm also very fond of a bit of charity shop browsing and purchasing! Love the ladybird books also.
    M xxx

  8. Hi what a wonderful cake,and the double saucepan was a FAB! find,you could use it to melt chocolate or to melt wax to make teacup candles.Wishing you a lovely weekend,Pam.

    1. Now there's a thought! I've always wanted to try the candle thing x

  9. Hi thank you for your lovely comment, will be following you, our Aunt Jane has lots to live up to as we feel she is watching over us! Julie x

  10. I love that you sent a cake to London - such a nice thing to do, plus it looks amazing! I'm glad it's just not me that loses sense next to a bargain!

  11. Hi Jane, thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog, lovely to meet new bloggers this way. I am a big fan of all the ladybird books, real nostalgia when I see them. Have a great week xox Penelope

  12. Hi Jane,
    I have nominated your blog for the Liebster Award. More details on my last post.
    Rosie x


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