Thursday, 24 February 2011

Timmy's Last Wheek

Timmy, my last guinea pig, has joined his house-mate, Tommy, who died some fair time ago now.  This evening Timmy was immobile with ruffled fur and a bowl of uneaten food.  I scooped him up into a box with soft sawdust and brought him into the house, positioned him near to the radiator and stroked him gently.  

In a short time he squeaked once and his little body shuddered its last. Timmy lived for a little over five years so he had a fairly long life and he enjoyed his lifestyle, with fresh food and his own little house within a fenced outdoor enclosure. 

His enclosure now lies abandoned and Oscar, Timmy's five-year old female rabbit neighbour, is alone.   She will be set to inherit a newer, larger enclosure as there is no longer the need for two.  

I don't think I'll buy any more guinea pigs, I am a terrible softy and it upsets me when they pass away.  I shall miss Timmy's wheeking, he always knew when it was time for food and he was very vocal about wanting it!

Tomorrow Timmy will be buried next to Tommy.  I know that I'll shed another tear for my silent guinea pig.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Memories of Mum

Today it has been a whole year since my mum died.  Here I have added some photos remembering all of the happy moments spent together.  There are many happy memories that I cherish, these photos are but a snapshot of the wonderful, kind, beautiful and courageous Sharon Dickerson.  My mother.

Mum and I after I had competed in
a school sports day. 1980's

Us, I loved this jumper which
Mum bought in River Island

At a family wedding in the mid 1990's
I am the poser!

A windy day at Reculver Castle

Posing in the 1980's

Mum on her wedding day, I remember
wearing this jacket with jeans when I was a teenager

Mum and I in about 1995 - this was before
I had hair straighteners!

One of my favourite photos of my mum

At a family wedding in the 1980's

We were both young in this pic

At another family wedding in the early 1980's

On our last family holiday together, Mum showing her
determination to carry on. 2009

On holiday in 2007

On my wedding day 2007, Leeds Castle

Gorgeous in the 1980's

While at school, Lausanne, Mum was a

With me on my wedding day, we
both wore 'Gina of London' Swarovski crystal sandals

My parents wedding reception, cutting
the cake.  1979 hence the curtains!

My parents on a sunny afternoon
in Hastings

Mum in the late 1970's

Mum expecting me, 1979

My parents on their wedding day in 1979

My parents, one of my birthday meals
at the Captain Digby

Mum strolling at Broadstairs

Mum and I one Christmas time

Mum on one of our many days out!

My parents, Dover Western Heights

Mum could never resist stroking the animals!

Us at Druidstone Park

Us at Farming World, of course we stroked the animals!

My parents at Walmer Castle

I loved this shirt that Mum bought me, I wore it lots!

On one of our many holidays!

Mum wearing my slippers, 1995,
she would spend hours chatting with me in
my bedroom.

Young love! My parents in the 1970's
before I was born!

Us on holiday again

My parents in our garden after one
of my school sports days. Mid 1980's

Mum in Rome, St. Peter's Square

Mum and Dad with our old dog, Dodger, he was
so playful!

Sunning in my nan's garden one summer
early 1990's

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Colourful Cakes

I simply had to share some of the colourful cupcakes I have made recently.  Pink vanilla with milk chocolate Lindt truffle, caramel and toffee with Cadbury fudge and Thornton's special toffee, lemon glitter with dark chocolate Lindt truffle and mint green with Aero bubbles and After Eight slices.

Valentine, Hearts and Champagne

It was a little disappointing that Valentine's day fell on a Monday this year so I decided to cook a three course meal for Husband at home for the Saturday before Valentine's day.

I started by preparing my desserts on Friday evening.  I opted for lemon cheesecake with ginger biscuit base and a topping of lemon syllabub.  To fancy them up, I ladled the mixture into cocktail glasses and made a heart glass charm.  

I mashed sweet potatoes and mixed with fresh chives, parsley, onions and spices to make curried potato bites for the starter.  I served these with a garlic, chive and cheese dip plus a tomato salsa version (all home-made).  I baked lightly seasoned bread twists as a side accompaniment. 

At the end of preparing all that I was thoroughly baked-out and decided that for mains I would oven-bake a white wine and cheese risotto, I know it was lazy!

I cut hearts from glittery felt and card and tossed these onto the dining table runner as heart-confetti.  I'd bought scented candles for an Austrian "Adventskranz", I decorated it with sweet-smelling pot pourri, hearts and beads.  My husband and I were gifted the Adventskranz at Christmas by Husband's daughter and I thought it so lovely that I have decided to use it all year round.

To finish the Valentine meal off, I made Vodka chocolate cups, some infused with mint but all filled with a generous measure of the alcohol!

The bread twists and dips.

A card I made for Husband.

Heart decorated Adventskranz.

Our Valentine table.

Our Swarovski Champagne flutes, which were a gift to me on my wedding day
from my husband.  I love the crystals in the stems.

Valentine carnations, not roses as I love carnations!

The mascarpone cheesecake desserts.