Summer Garden


Californian poppies and blue cornflowers.
Part of the wildflower meadow seeds from here.

Christmas is coming,

the geese are getting fat
Please put a penny in the old man's hat
If you haven't got a penny, a halfpenny will do
If you haven't got a ha'penny, then God bless you!
for Santa

Eye Spy a bit of bling

Sunday means it's time to play Cindy's fun Eye Spy game with a great theme from Hoppo Bumpo - a bit of bling. I had to scour, believe you me. I don't have much bling. And my husband vacuums up any kiddie bling the minute he sees it. In fact I only have my wedding bling which was made by this clever lady. But my photos really wouldn't do it justice.

But there is a lovely Christmas tree in the corner, with a spot or two of bling. Lot's of red shiny baubles. But I actually took the photo of this treasured heirloom decoration instead, one of a handful we inheritated from my mother in law. Their sequins are slightly faded now, but they are so sweet, they're still bling in my eyes.

Birthday Party

Big day today. Elsa's sixth birthday party. Lot's of fun with lovely friends, cups of tea and too much sugar. I love birthday parties. I love making the cake, the party bags and organising the games. And I love to watch how the children grow each year and how their tastes in games, food and how they play together changes.
I wish I took better photos though, but wrangling thirteen kidlings is quite taxing on your shooting time!
By far the most popular activity was playing musical instruments - mostly the piano, but the drums and shakers and anything with they could bang a rhythm on really. They really are a musical bunch. The children even improvised the music for Pass the Parcel and Musical Chairs which was great fun. But I did learn that perhaps six is too young for only one prize in Pass the Parcel.
I breathe a big sigh of relief knowing that we can now slow down and spend a quiet few days in the lead up to Christmas. Ahhhhhh......

Making, Stitching, Baking

Things are moving along nicely here at chez Hugo & Elsa. School finished today with a flurry of assemblies, concerts, beach trips and baking Christmas gifts - panforte for Elsa's teacher, again. We make it every year, although this year there isn't alot left to *ahem* give. It's too delicious!I've made soaps again too this year for presents, a white Marseilles, and a vanilla bean experiment, mmm not sure about that one, might keep that one for family I think...

Part one of the birthday celebrations are over - part two this Sunday. I bought this gem of a book which has beautiful ideas for celebrations, crafts, games and recipes. Gosh I love it. And so we're busy stitching and making and baking for the big day. Along with fitting in more crafty fun from here. Are you stitching along?
And while I know we probably should be spending more time outside, picking our lovely strawberries and planting my two new roses. I saw a massive snake in the garden today - and I think inside is best for a while....eek!
My goodness it felt good today to a cross a few things off that list - how's your list coming along?

Six journeys around the sun

Elsa will be six tomorrow. I can't believe how much she's grown. Such a sweet and sensitive little soul who is kind to the world around her. Full of wonder and adventure. I learn so much from her every day and am incredibly blessed to have her in my life.

Check Out These Beauties!


I was so excited today to not only get the first of the summer cherries, but white ones! My favourite, so sweet and juicy and a little more mellow than the black ones. I bought them from straight from the grower at the farm gate. Picked today and super fresh....Now it really does feel like Christmas!

A little bit of Christmas

It will be a little while yet before we have our Christmas tree up, but yesterday I spurlged on this beautiful handmade nativity set from Brazil. I love their little sweet faces, and Elsa is completely smitten with the angel.
As soon as Elsa and I placed them on the mantle this morning, I instantly felt overcome by an incredible sense of calm. Our home has a new energy today. They must be magic.

Diaphanousness


This is the tulle cut into strips ready for a no sew tutu I'm making for Elsa's birthday next week. I think my favourite clobber for a little girl must be a tutu, t-shirt and gumboots. These are really easy to make, a few metres of tulle, cut into strips and tied onto a loop of elastic.

This is the third no sew tutu I've ever made. The first one I made for myself with black tulle, when I about, oh 17. I wore it with a black skivvy and super pointy flat shoes, to a Simple Minds concert, I think. The second was when I was a bridesmaid, aged about 20. There were two of us bridesmaids and we were both very poor. We made the tutus and teamed them with a cream spencer and bare feet. With our short and spikey, brightly coloured and heavily gelled hair it would have been quite a look! Sigh, oh those (late) eighties....

Market wrap

We had a lovely time at the Mothers Market - it's such a stylish but cruisey market. Lots of cake and beautiful things to buy, all washed down with plenty of Cuvee. My kind of market!
I worked with my good friend Jo - who is not only an amazing chef, but she just loves cake as much as I do - a rare talent. We made six flavours: an old fashioned chocolate (really cakie - the type of cake you ate as a kid - Nigella would be "nostalgically drawn to this solid offering") with vanilla (with real vanilla beans) or chocolate buttercream; lemon;
Vietnamese coffee, above; vanilla vanilla (with more vanilla beans); and the most amazing super rich chocolate made with ground almonds and finished with a chocolate ganache, sigh, I can't stop dreaming about that one! We sold nearly all of them - with just enough left over for husbands and children.
I think I spent most of my profits on the day - brooches from Harriet and Verna & Hilda, gorgeous cards from gorgeous Catherine. And this most beautiful apron from Cherish by Bek Burrows. Beautiful soft linen with the most generous cut. Incredible stitching that I've never seen before. Amazing detail. It feels like a big linen hug when I wear it.

So many talented women here in Tasmania. It was wonderful to be involved. I look forward to the next one....

I heart cupcakes


I love eating them, and I love making them. Which is lucky because I have another 200 to bake for tomorrow's market.

Yule love this



Only one day late (lucky the little ones don't notice) today we put up our Advent Calendar that Elsa and I made. It will help count down one hectic month. Starting with this weekend I'm having a stall at the Mothers Market, so, so, so excited to get a guernsey for that one. Following weekend it's off to gorgeous Mclaren Vale for my sisters wedding. Then the next weekend we have Miss E's big Pirates and Princesses birthday extravaganza. And finally the big visit from St Nick and we're hosting lunch. Phew! I'm so excited, so much to organise, so much to do. Super busy, but so much fun to be had!