I have a list of demands

Monday, August 22, 2016

The first item on the list is going to back to spend a little more time with the fairies in the driveway. They're wonderful kids now of course but oh how I loved it when they were this size.

The Yellow House

Sunday, August 14, 2016

It looks so cosy. I want to move in. 

Heritable traits

Sunday, August 07, 2016

J and Aunty S at the best 5th birthday party ever. They didn't even realise they were doing it. Happy birthday Tommy!

Window Shopping

Friday, August 05, 2016

My local art society regularly hangs and exhibits at the shopping centre. The ramps to the underground carpark are hung with gallery wire and we all take our time wandering up and down, admiring the paintings/drawings/watercolours, trying not to run our trolleys into the ankles of the people in front of us.
I pick a favourite every time they do this and it isn't easy resisting the urge to buy it and bring it home. Thank goodness for the truth telling of bank account statements! One of my favourite's this time around is this watercolour. It's cosy, it almost glows, it reminds me of sitting with my darling G in warm coffee shops seeking refuge from the cold. But I didn't buy it. This time...

Green Sheep

Thursday, August 04, 2016

We have two Where is the Green Sheep? books. This morning Sweetie was teaching the Littlest Duckling to read. They turned pages in synch, they found fun things in the pictures, they giggled conspiratorially and they read their way through the book. Frankly, I don't want them to get any bigger than they are right now.
***
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Heart full.
***

Cupcake Oma and the Dollhouse

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The littlest duckling loves playing dollhouse with Oma and, luckily, Oma love playing dollhouse too. When she was over recently duckling asked me to leave so she and Oma could get on with playing. And then, when I came back after a few minutes she asked me to leave again! I think I was cramping their style.
***
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Heart full.
***

Not a Food Blogger

Friday, July 22, 2016

I am definitely a food blogger but we have been baking a lot lately. Last night G and I made coconut cake. It's delicious! We used this recipe from Momofukufor2 with a few adjustments and without the swiss meringue buttercream.
Ingredients:
1/3 cup coconut milk
1 tsp vanilla
90g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
2/3 cup caster sugar
1 whole egg plus 1 egg white
1 cup self raising flour
pinch of salt
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
Method:
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Cream the butter and sugar together until well combined (this takes several minutes).
Add the vanilla and the lightly beaten egg and continue mixing until pale and fluffy.
Mix all the dry ingredients together and add to the mixture, alternating half the dry then half the milk, then the rest of the dry, then the rest of the milk, beating well between each addition.
Bake in a lined springform pan for 40mins. Check with a skewer before removing from the oven.
Cool completely in the pan.
Decorate with icing (butter, coconut essence, icing mixture, milk) and shredded coconut.

Just a cup of coffee

Monday, July 18, 2016

'Can I get a name for the coffee?', they ask me. And, just briefly of course, I consider naming the coffee. Joe is an obvious first thought, with some favourite but never used names coming to mind next. Hugh, Thea, Alex, Jack, Imogen. How is it possible that I have four daughters and not one is called Imogen? I wonder. However, I know myself well enough to know that I am not the kind of person that is actually going to give my coffee a name so I snap out of my reverie and say 'Amelia'. My name. Which is what they're asking for after all.

Persian Love Cake

Friday, July 08, 2016



I've never been to La Boqueria in Barcelona or the Mellah Spice Souk in Marrakech but I love to read about these places in magazines and books. I imagine that they are noisy, bustling, sticky underfoot and smell intoxicating.
This persian love cake, from Annabel Crabb and Wendy Sharpe's book Special Delivery, made the kitchen smell amazing. The air was heavy with the warm scent of nutmeg (there is an entire tablespoon of the stuff in this recipe) and if I closed my eyes I could almost imagine myself in one of those spice markets - complete with sticky floors (thanks kids).
There are a few spice cakes that I love and make regularly - cinnamon cake, ginger and apple cake, cinnamon apple pie cake, my mother-in-law's kruidkoek and I am going to add this one to the list. With a dollop of greek yogurt and some orange segments it is a delicious antidote to grey day yawns.
***
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Heart full.
***
Eleanor suggested suite as the collective noun for cupcakes. Suite/sweet - it is completely perfect. Thank you dear poet!

Edible Wafers Fluttering

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

The collective noun for butterflies is flight, so there's a flight of butterflies on my kitchen counter right now. C and the Littlest Duckling baked cupcakes with me this morning and we decorated them with pale pink icing and edible wafer butterflies this afternoon. It looked like they fluttered in on the sunbeams streaming in through the kitchen window and landed on some plump, rosy flowers.
There doesn't seem to be a collective noun for cupcakes which strikes me as a gaping hole in the english language. Thankfully, I am not the only person who has noticed this. All-Sorts.org are even running a poll. None of their suggestions are particularly engaging so I am putting forward my own.
Cupcakes always bring good tidings so maybe we could call a group of them a herald, or a celebration.
'Sarabeth brought a celebration of cupcakes to school today for her birthday.' Or,
'There's a herald of cupcakes on the table and the tea is brewing in the pot. We're ready for Oma's visit.'
What do you think, dear Reader? I'd love to hear your ideas for an appropriate collective noun for cake.
In the meantime, the little duyvkens and I are going to pack some of these up for my niece's 9th birthday. I am sure we'll eat a few as we go. In the name of quality control, of course.

Unnecessary Thanks

Well, that was delicious. Thank you Jodie.

Tour de Duyvken

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Making Fun

Friday, July 01, 2016


JW quickly made some tickets for watching a movie at home yesterday afternoon and guided the kids to their assigned seats in that open palmed manner theatre ushers and airline attendants use. It was adorable. When I feel weary the little duyvkens do have a way of cheering me up. G and I then stayed up and watched Anjelah Johnson on netflix. It was pretty much perfect after a very loooong week.
***
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Heart full.
***

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