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It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Tales From A Local Show!

Well, as my Dad used to say "learning all the time".

Yesterday was our local horticultural show. I had been really looking forward to taking part as I missed it last year, as you know, with us moving here the week before.

My cakes were made on Friday and yesterday morning I filled the Victoria sandwich and popped some strawberries on the top. I put three iced flowers on my lemon drizzle and finished off my chocolate brownie with some icing and pecan nuts.

I got everything over to the show and left it until later in the afternoon as we had family here and the Rayburn was being installed.

Before I say anymore about the show see how well the Rayburn looks. It went in really quite easily; Jon had help from his dad and then a pal from work came later on in the afternoon to help put the one we took out into the shed to sit until we sell it.

It is amazing. The water is sooo hot, I'll be able to boil the kettle and cook on the top and can't wait to go back to cooking and baking in it. All in all it is a great asset to the kitchen. I'm so grateful for Jon being so handy in order that all the refurbishment was done for not a lot of money to save us a great deal of money now and in the future.

Back to the show. I popeed over to take a look at everything and see the prize winners.

I have learnt a lot if I take part next year! My eggs when broken looked super but I had three the same colour and one not quite. Next my cucumbers  were a lot smaller than the rest but I didn't mind that; they were not going on taste just looks. My lemon cake passed without incident but I did win 2nd prize for my chocolate brownie! I won 75p for that.

 Now on the jams and jellies etc I had decorated tops on the jars which I wondered whether or not they had been taken off at all....

I didn't win anything for my button based craft item but this will be a nioce gift for somebody. 

Now, my Victoria sponge. They didn't even bother to cut into it! It had cream and strawberry jam in it -  nobody else seemed to have cream in theirs - but I have to say it look so much better than enybody elses, even if they were following the criteria or rules - which we didn't know of course. Look.

(This is it cut into when we ate some last night.)

I looked this morning and the lemon curd and marmalade had not even been opened! I was spoken to by a lady at the end of the show who said, if I wanted to go further in competition, that I need to have a plain lid and plain label - mine were Cath Kidston! Hate to blow my own trumpet but my lemon curd is a bit special, even more so now with our own eggs.

With all this I was laughing my head off and one lady told me that back in the day when the WI held shows you didn't even get a look in if you put anything other than raspberry jam in your sponge cake!

So it was a bit of an experience, Jon said I should stuff 'em!

Right now we are cooking on the breakfast on the Rayburn!

How fab is this. We have achieved one of our main aims, to heat the house, water and cook with out paying for the fuel!

In other news this last week I turned over the compost heap. I chose to do this on the day it was 77 degrees!

It has broken down really quite well apart from some of the straw so really hope I can use it soon.

Right, must dash as breakfast soon then we are going into Aber before Jon's dad and his wife go home. I have Harry's birthday cake to make today or tomorrow ready for his pals coming after school.

Of course, will keep an eye on what people have been up to over the weekend.

Bye for now.



  1. the WI are a strange old bunch, far too many rules and regulations and not enough fun if you ask me, I imagine that's why they have steadily dwindled in number over the years...

  2. It certainly seems a little short sighted to overlook the contents just because the label and lid were too fancy!, I bet they missed a treat - more fool them

  3. well done on your 2nd prize, it was there loss not trying them, you will know for next time, well done with the Rayburn it will be a big money saver for you :-)

    1. Thanks. I'm trying to get to grips with the Rayburn just now until we keep it lit full time in a few weeks.

  4. Well done on your prize, your cake looks really good.
    Your Rayburn will be such a good money saver, I can only dream of having one, maybe one day who knows.
    Our compost bin has given us several lots, I think my hubby puts some sort of pellets on it and it helps to break it down more x

  5. Thank you. Loving having the Rayburn back. Baked bread in it today. Really hope to use some of the compost soon.

  6. Gosh the rules and regulations of a local show - a little bit of power and some people do go a bit nuts! Well done on the 2nd prize and I would certainly have cut in to that Victoria Sponge - and eaten a very large piece!

    1. Thanks Greta. It didn't last long when it came home!x

  7. A huge congratulations on 2nd prize regardless. They should be welcoming new people to the show and not being so hard. If people take the time to attend and pay their entry fees, they should take the time to try the produce. However, you know for next year now....I have a feeling you'll still want to enter ;)
    LOVING the Rayburn. Aren't they amazing? I wouldn't be without our Aga now. Especially now the weather is cooling off on a morning and evening. x

    1. Thanks for the congrats Tracy. The Rayburn is definitely a challenge in keepping it going and watching the temperature. Glad I can have a bit of a practice at the moment and again I have mananged to bake my bread and stir fry some veg on the top today!.x


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