Bank Holiday Weekend Walk

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Sunday we had some lovely weather, after a rather gloomy Saturday. So late morning we set off for a quick walk that turned into a 2 hour walk. We started on our usual route, but instead of turning up the hill and round our normal circuit, we carried on through the fields. I love the views over all the countryside, I kept having to catch up with the others as I stopped to admire the views and capture them with my camera (well my phone!) and got left behind.

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Just look at that dog, I’m thinking it was cooling her down, but she really did get right down into that muddy puddle! Luckily the rest of the walk, with some long grass and sun, managed to clean and dry her, so when we got home she was pretty much mud free.

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My view walking up this track, was a chatty, singing, very entertaining Little C. He was so sweet, he walks so well and never complained once in the 2 hours. Our daily dog walks have obviously made his little two and a half year old legs very strong.

Some lovely things to look at along the way. I love being out in the countryside and the sunshine makes everything look so much happier.

We then turned off the road and along a very narrow track, with walls of greenery up above our heads and then out onto a wider track which runs along the top of the hill that our cottage sits about halfway down.

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We could see down into the town that’s a couple of miles away from our lane, love how much green there is as well as the houses.

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Of course D had brought along blackberry picking tubs, so we stopped off to pick and eat some more. We had D’s daughter stay on Sunday too so had an extra mouth to feed with blackberries, but also extra hands to pick them. D’s got ideas to make blackberry gin!

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Back down the hill now, to find our little cottage. There are some hungry tummies, the blackberries not quite making up for lunch, some soup is waiting for us that D had cooking before we left. Yummy, yummy!

Well this was quite a photo heavy post, I apologise if it got a tad boring. Tomorrow I’ve got some colourful hooky to show you. My crocheting seems to have taken on a life of it’s own. I’ve got other projects waiting, scrap booking and sewing, to name a few, but I just can’t get enough of my gorgeous colourful yarn. So I’m thinking I’ll carry it on and along the way I might fancy a day with my sewing machine, it might be a better task for when Little Man is back at school perhaps. Wow that’s only a week away, doesn’t 6 weeks fly by!

Last day of August tomorrow, thanks for stopping by and hope to see you again very soon.

Take care. E x

Family Weekend & Blackberry Picking

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My cousin and her family came to visit over the weekend. An extra 5 people in our small cottage was panicking me slightly, but of course it worked out fine and although the weather was very wet and gloomy we did manage to go out for a quick walk on Sunday morning, up the hill next to our house where there are loads of blackberries! The children loved it and we got 4 tubs full.

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Of course I couldn’t let visitors come without making some treats, so on Friday I made some shortbread biscuits. I love this recipe and the biscuits are a big hit with the boys and D.

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The recipe is one I found on the BBC Food website and I’ll share it with you, it’s very simple to remember –

INGREDIENTS

125g/4oz butter

55g/2oz caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling

180g/6oz plain flour

METHOD

  1. Heat the oven to 190 deg C/375 F/ gas mark 5
  2. Beat the butter and sugar together until smooth
  3. Stir in the flour to a smooth paste.
  4. Flour the work surface and turn the mixture on to it.
  5. Roll out to 1cm/1/2″ thick and cut into shapes (I just use a small round cutter)
  6. Put them onto baking trays and sprinkle with a little caster sugar.
  7. Chill in the fridge for about 20 minutes

Here the BBC recipe says to bake for 15-20 minutes. The first time I made them I set the timer for 12 minutes so I could check them. But when I looked at them they were brown all over and looked over cooked. I like shortbread quite pale with a slight browning just round the edge. So the next tray I baked for 9 minutes and they came out perfectly. I’m not sure if it’s because I used the fan in the oven, but I would suggest checking them after about 8/9 minutes to check the colour. (you may like them very brown, in which case the longer time will be fine for you).

8. Set on a wire rack to cool. Then enjoy.

I hope you can give this recipe a try, there’s nothing better than homemade biscuits and I so much prefer the boys eating these than any bought from the shops, I know what the ingredients are and that they are good quality.

If you need some baking inspiration, The Great British Bake Off starts tonight,  here in England. I love it and can’t wait, for an hour every Wednesday night I’ll be parked on the sofa with some crochet, a cup of tea and the TV on. Lovely!

Have fun and take care. E x