Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Physiotherapy confined me to barracks but a few dozen apples a day........

The after effects of my trip to the physio meant that I had to take it easy this afternoon. Which is usually difficult, but not on this occasion!

After making lunch and having a rest, I got itchy feet and needed a distraction so decided to enlist Pat’s help to sort out the bag of windfall apples we were given a week ago.

I peeled and he cut out the bad bits and cut them into chunks. Sitting here typing this I am imaging the reader thinking ‘Why on earth is she going to all that trouble? Why bother, why nor just throw them in the bin?’

Quite honestly I do not have a sensible answer to that. It comes from not bearing to waste good food – must be in my genes. To make something out of ‘free food’ that would otherwise have gone to waste is very satisfying. Usually I would have walked the back lanes and gone blackberry picking and added them to the apples, but I could not manage to do that this year.

On tasting the apples I found that they were dessert ones, so added some raisins and gently cooked them in a pan with the lid on tight so they just steamed. The raisins absorbed all the apple juice and the result was a light fluffy apple mixture, just right for apple strudels, pies, or crumbles. We could not resist having some just warm with hot custard, for tea though, and you’ve guessed it, the rest is destined for the freezer.

I had to give in and have a lie down for an hour this afternoon, but once up I typed up the blog, and also searched for and found a template for seed packets. I was really thrilled with this as I am drying some of my seeds and intend giving them as little presents. Probably popping them in with the Christmas cards.

I make my own cards too; although not cost effective given the time and effort and materials used, compared with the cheap boxes readily available in the shops, but I get a lot of pleasure from it making a card with a particular person in mind, and knowing that however it turns out, it will be original, and the recipient will not be getting another the same. Often at Christmas we get several cards identical, I expect you do too, and there is nothing wrong with that at all, I just like to imagine the surprise when my card is opened.

Ditto cards for every occasion.

This is one that I made for friends - the couple were American and French, and I themed it to suit the interests of the bride. It is a copy of a Victorian picture, which I pasted onto lovely card that had a silver shimmer to it and was the exact colour of the shading on picture background. I framed the picture with very old lace, highlighted it and the couple with silver here and there to accentuate it. The picture I had made into a 3D decoupage by printing it out four or five times and layering it. I then wrote the messages in both French and English on paper inside which I had cut the edges to look like lace and tinted them with silver too, finishing off by tying it together with silver thread. It took me hours, but I probably got more pleasure out of doing it than the bride and groom did receiving it - and again, it is original. If you click on the card you might just be able to see the detail.

So when I have finished most of my allotment work and I am trapped indoors with the weather, I shall be making my Christmas Cards, and seed packets. And after Christmas I will be saving all my cards to cut up and change and transform them with other embellishments into totally different ones.

Having run out of things to say – for a change- I want to end this blog today, by thanking everyone who has been logging on to have a look.

I am exceedingly surprised and delighted as it was just really done for me and a few friends and family to see what I had been up to, and I never dreamt for one minute that I might get a ‘following’. I am tickled pink that so many of you enjoy the ramblings of an ordinary middle aged lady, in the Norfolk countryside, learning how to grow vegetables.

Thanks too for all the complimentary feed back.


  1. What a lovely card.
    I sometimes do watercolour cards at christmas and birthdays too.
    I dont blame you for wanting to use your windfalls! My neighbour gives me some that fall in her garden from her neighbours tree.We make crumbles with them usually as the kids love them.
    The tree has been there since 1949 so it is suprising its still fruiting.
    Thankyou for your answer further down.

  2. So glad enjoy doing similar things to me. Sometimes I feel like an odd bod. Good to hear from you again Chris. I have been out and about today so will get the blog done later this evening hopefully.

    Thanks for you comments

  3. Anonymous1:57 pm

    oops :(
    My email is the bit after the http in the link.Sorry! Thought it was an email address box.

  4. Likewise I would also clean up and use/freeze apple windfalls.
    When I worked in residential chid care we recived mountains of harvest festival produce -there was almost a queue of vicars at the door!(Thank goodness each church didn't celebrate it on the same Sunday) My favourite job was making fresh fruit salad-we even had it for breakfast plus we froze lots of apple,carrots etc and made gallons of tomato soup.


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