Fabric gazing time again, the weeks running up to the Christmas Arts markets are ticking by quickly! Some new designs and fabrics all set to go! Hope your November days are dotted with bursts of inspiration (a mid the cups of hot tea and strong coffee!)
The palette in the Mediterranean is shifting, here everything is returning to green and there is the hint of rain carried on the back of the wind at last. We greet the billowy cloudskapes with relief and welcome the changing of light and the freshness of breath. Revival from the slow days of heat and sun.
After two weeks of joyous memory- making days with the four kiddos
(think days upon days of sun and upper 90 degree heat) getting all the smalls dressed, sun-blocked and off to the beach or park or friends house on my own has been .. adventure-full. There are the reoccurring discussions on who gets to sit next to the baby, who gets to choose the first song in the car, and who gets to bring which favourite toy, lego, or random rock along with them. Someone always realises (only once we are up the long alley and all buckled up and cooking in the car that they have forgotten the most IMPORTANT (fill in the blank) bit of paper, special broken clock, random plastic container, moshi monster,football card or dead bug...yes many a golden moment there (Que crying teething baby). But seriously there have been laughs, tears, kitty emergencies and many many many bits of bickering
But now blessed summer camp has begun and ohh to have a few glorious mornings alone - or rather with the little napper!
At long last I am beginning to sew again, hoping to reopen the etsy shop soon (end of August).
So without further ado- a few pictures of the latest little Caper Collection toy-
this is one for Giuseppe
(there is a matching twin brother giraffe just like it a the newly opened
On our merry way back from the sea side we stopped along the dusty road side to buy some fruit from an old farmer dangling his long gangly legs out the back of a truck. Taking a break in the shade, he leaned out and gave us a large nearly toothless smile, then proceeded to convinced my husband to buy not two but three baskets of small plums. Seeing his large hardened hands, extremely gnarled with age, tilted the scales. He looked somewhere between 70 and 200.
So with plums on the mind I came up with this summer drink.
500 grams ripe plums
1 cup sugar
juice from half a lemon and half a orange
Wash and place the plums in a cooking pot, fill with water just an inch above the plums and let boil for a good 15 min. Pour through a sieve and set aside the boiled plums, place the remaining liquid back in the pot, add the sugar and boil for 10 min, turn off the burner and add the juice of half a lemon and half a orange. Let cool and decant into a glass bottle.
Once cool, serve over a glass of ice (an inch is what I use but pour to taste) fill the rest of the glass with sparkling water and add a slice of lime.
* With the left over plums press through a fine strainer and use this slightly compote a top some good quality vanilla yogurt or heated over ice cream. If you like it sweeter add in a few tablespoons of the cordial.
* I have not tried yet but I can imagine this to be equally refreshing with Gin or Vodka added.
I was given two gorgeous cutting boards by a dear friend
who must have guessed that spreads of feta, stuffed olives, peppered goats cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, bigilla and marinated octopus salad are all local nibbles that we bring out in time for the cocktail hour on an almost daily basis - especially in the summertime.
Recently I have noticed bookended by brothers, my two daughters have quietly been growing in their closeness toeach other as well as in their abilities. The little one in her focused attention to the 'homework' her older sister has 'asigned'and the elder in slipping off through the pages of a book.
Summer time reading is luscious, I am so happy to see her discovering this too!
At the moment my Magpie is in the last chapter of
and for myself...
I am slipping off to nurse happily with this book in my hand
On the sunny days round here you will find us dashing out to the countryside for a picnic , some flower picking, water colour painting and ball throwing keep the children busy as the absent minded professor and I get to lounge with the paper, fresh bread, Italian cheeses and fruit.
Making sure that our wee dragon child gets some sun.
And if its raining, hailing blustery and cold (which it has been for a good deal of the last month)-
Then you will find me trying to heat up the house (this Midwesterner sooooo misses central heating).
Yesterday's treat was my first go at Ginger snaps- a personal favourite. Goes well with a steaming cup of chai which I have also been indulging in on a nearly daily basis (more on that later).
The cookies were a hit, the recipe I used can be found here.
My latest find has been the foodgawker app - great for inspiration and new recipes!
lastly a captured shot of the resident small dragon- who has learned to smile!
It's hard to believe that little Pepito is almost one month old! Somehow I still have not gotten back into the swing of things, I seem to be constantly stranded amid piles of laundry, and dishes, nursing the little one for what feels like hours on end and managing very little else. I had forgotten this stage... days passing in a whirr... the edges of day and night being very blurred.
Snug in the buggy with his little bunny (thank you S!),
We started the new year off with walks amid orange trees, gingerbread muffins(recipe below) then
some Tom Waits as the rains then fell. I made some long overdue clothing for the smalls' smalls; that being a coat and wool trousers for Foxy (debatable if it is a grey fox or a rat), little felt coat for little D's frog and a new dress and little coat for Magpie's sock monkey.