Monthly Archives: October 2010

Halloween Effort

Scary Witch finger cookies from this recipe. We made these once as kids and I’ve always remembered them!

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Morning Routine

Over the last few weeks I have established something of a morning routine. At first, to be honest, I felt a bit guilty about it, since it seems quite indulgent. I get up, eat my breakfast, and then before I tackle anything else I sit down and knit for half an hour. It feels especially cozy now that it is still dark in the mornings. A nice way to start the day. And though for a while I worried that I should be doing something else, I have begun to realize that it is the perfect time to look ahead at what the day holds, plan what needs to be done and generally give my brain time to sort itself out. (And with the added bonus that I make steady, if slow, progress on whatever knitting project I’ve got on the go.) So I’m not going to worry much about it, and just enjoy the routine since it seems to be working!

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Practice and Pincushions

While I was casting about for a print inspiration my eyes fell upon an old pincushion that sits on my desk. As things seemed to be moving rather slowly in the creative department, I decided to go with it, almost as an exercise. I did a little research to come up with some other pincushion shapes and then away I went. I’m still perfecting the print as there are some tricky bits. I don’t think it is anything special but sometimes you have to work at the process of being inspired; it’s a manoeuvre that works best with practice. This pincushion print also suggests to me a whole bunch of possibilities using collections of everyday objects.

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Back in the Saddle with Autism Arts

This Saturday was our second class for Autism Arts this season.  We have some new children and some who have been in the program for a while, so it is a nice mix. We are still, as always, learning, but the way of working we have developed seems to be paying off. From my point of view, the art side of things, that means coming up with three activities, a mix of familiar and new, for the class. Yesterday we did drawing with pastels, print making and marble painting, and I’m pleased to say most children had a go at each activity. The marble painting proved the most popular.

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The Pasty

Let me say a word about the pasty.  I know that in the world of cuisine England has not been held up as a great leader, I think it’s fair to say, and the poor pasty has been much maligned. I however, am a big fan. The pasty was always a big part of our visits to Devon and we took advantage of their availability by having one on almost a daily basis.Well, maybe not quite, but I would have been happy if we did!  For me, as a vegetarian, it’s the Cheese and Onion Pasty, and I think it’s the perfect comfort food.

I made some pasties last night and a few more (with the left-overs) this morning. I was just going to share the link to the recipe I used but then realized that I used bits and piece of different recipes, so I’ll try to sketch it out here. It made 6 large pasties.

CHEESE AND ONION PASTIES

Short Crust Pastry

3 cups flour

6 oz butter, room temperature (you can use lard and butter if you want, but I only ever have butter in the house)

1 tsp salt

little bit of water

Make the pastry. I followed these instructions. Allow to chill for 30 minutes. Pre-heat over to 400 F.

Filling

Mix the following together:

3 medium potatoes, cut into very small pieces

1 large onion or two small, cut very small

grated cheddar cheese – I can’t tell you how much but just add as much as you want/have.

salt and pepper

Assembly

Divide the dough into 6 pieces. On a floured surface, roll out one piece of dough and use a saucer to cut a perfect circle (Mine was about 7 inches). Place some of the filling on one side of the pastry. You will get a hang on how much to use. You don’t want to over-fill or it will be difficult to close.

Dip your finger in water and run it round the edge of the pastry, and then fold over and seal by pressing with a fork. Then fold over the sealed edge like this.

Place the finished pasty on a floured baking sheet. Cut two small steam holes in the top and brush with milk.

Finish making the rest of the pasties and bake for 40 – 45 minutes. You can use any left over pastry and filling to make mini pasties, just don’t bake them as long, obviously.

Enjoy!

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Love Apples

Some love apples. A print I designed the other day.

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I’ve no cards to print this on just at the moment but I plan to make quite  a few once I locate a good blank card source.

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Getting Together to Knit

Late yesterday afternoon my cousin Katie and I got together to knit! This has been something we have been meaning to do for a long time and I think we are both rather proud that we managed to make it happen – the next challenge is to make it a weekly event. Katie is just learning to knit but there is nothing like Christmas round the corner to make you feel inspired. In the end I didn’t do much knitting because I was slightly disorganized, but we looked online for some patterns that Katie might try, I helped her start a test project and introduced her to Ravelry (which is really a great place to look for patterns, as well as a great window into the knitting community). Of course, there was also some tea drinking and munching of cinnamon buns.

 

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