Wednesday, September 28

. it's a gOod day to have a gOod day .

Warning . this post contains ramblings which may be considered slightly self indulgent & of a melancholic nature !

i caught myself wishing the year away yesterday . this continued feeling of a lack of purpose / of mojo / of direction is starting to weigh heavier on my subconscious . i have the sense of standing still whilst everything & everyone around me is whizzing around with a known intent & purpose . in my more rational moments i know that this isn't true . & . in that same moment of rationale i know that to wish the year away is to waste the opportunity that the remaining 94days offers . & . that suddenly sounds a lot of time . time to put to use even if it's only making small steps towards something bigger, something with more purpose & direction next year .

whilst looking for a quote for octOber i came across this { annonymous } quote

{ this is the beginning of a new day . you have been given this day to use as you will . you can waste it or use it for good . what you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it . when tomorrow comes this day will be gone forever . in it's place is something you have left behind . let it be something good }

so this year i still have 94 opportunities to do something good . something to make someone smile . something that makes me happy . something small . or . something a little bigger . 94 days to read more . watch more . see more . & . now, suddenly, 94 days just doesn't feel enough ?

. it's a goOd day to have a gOod day .


. have a very gOod dAy .

Monday, September 26

. jAmmy dOdger cUpcakes . { cUpcakes with added cOokie cUteness } .


it's monday morning . it's a grey drizzly day . maybe you are still wishing it was the weekend ? maybe you are still wishing it was summer ? maybe you are mourning the end of National Cupcake Week ? maybe you are mourning the end of The Great British Bake Off as we know & love it ? fear not . whilst i may not be able to bring back the weekend . or . summer . or . the Bake Off back to BBC . i can bring you cupcakes . & . who can be sad when they're holding a cupcake ?

and these aren't just any old cupcakes . oh no . these are { my attempt } at creating a shOwstOpping cupcake for Bumpkin Betty's Baking Club challenge for September . after much deliberating about what to bake for this months Showstopper challenge once again the baking gOds looked down upon me & threw me a cupcake case sized clue in the shape of last weeks National Cupcake Week . in order to save myself from days weeks of further flavour deliberation an sOs message was dispatched to my sister who speedily replied with a suggestion of raspberry or lemon .


so how do you make a cupcake into a shOwstopping cupcake ? i'm still not sure i have the answer to that . but if the time it took to make these is anything to go by these are well & truly of the shOwstopping variety . and by the way . apron's off to those in the Bake Off tent working under those time constraints . i was baking these All Day Long ! though granted you don't see the Bake Off bakers faffing & styling their ingredients / batter / cupcakes / cookies to get the best instagram & blogging shot do you ?

taking my sister's suggestion of raspberry i decided on a simple vanilla cupcake with a hidden centre of homemade raspberry jam . a vanilla swiss buttercream . & . topped with a homemade jammy dodger . because what's better than a cupcake ?  a cupcake with a cookie on top . obviously !

 

making your own jam can seem scary . but it really isn't . & . it's super easy to make a small batch too . the roasting in the oven brings out all the juices & it really is worth taking the time to sieve those pips out too .

 

the homemade biscuits come together in no time at all though it's worth taking the time to chill the dough as instructed in the recipe . & . i also chilled it again when it had been cut into individual biscuits as i think it hold's it's shape a little better in the baking .

 

this was the first time i'd made this recipe . which is the { infamous } Magnolia Bakery's vanilla cupcake recipe . verdict . sO so sO good . this is now my go to cupcake recipe . { sorry hUmmingbird bAkery ! } . i baked mine in baking cups rather than cupcake cases as they're a little more sturdy and you don't need to bake using a baking tin . not to mention that they come in cute colours & patterns .

 

a final dusting of icing sugar . & . there you have it . 

& maybe we haven't solved the problem of mOnday mornings . rainy days . or . the demise of the Bake Off . but please tell me these cupcakes have cheered you up . just a little ?

thankyOu to Bumpkin Betty for another challenging challenge this month . & . as always if you fancy joining in with the baking then pop over to the Baking Club's facebook group . where you can see what all the other bakers have been baking for this month's challenge .

. have a chEery dAy .

Friday, September 23

. hAppy fridAy .


. 1 . a beautifully illustrated list of aUtumn essentials . { blankets & boots are ready } .
. 2 . think i'd be happy spending my aUtumn wrapped up on a blanket & bonnet .
. 3 . a perfect aUtumn outfit . { puts bow blouse & braces on to buy list } .
. 4 . i lOve gOrgeous has gone wild with a boys cOllection launching this aUtumn .
. 5 . Fall . 2016 . { illustrated in a wonderfully surreal style } .
. 6 . how incredibly cosy does this lUxe blanket look ?
. 7 . note to self . { mUst learn how to crochet } .
. 8 . hEllo aUtumn .
. 9 . to add to my " to read " list . { " to read " snuggled up under blanket . see above } .
. & . finally . it's bOtanical week on the BakeOff .
. & . i'm being inspired by this Quinntessential woodland wonderland cake .

. have a hAppy dAy .

Saturday, September 17

. hAppy weekEnd .


. 1 . a little in lOve with this knitted Miffy .
. 2 . a little in lOve with these striped jumpers .
. 3 . a little in lOve with this baby heart blanket .
{ ok . maybe the baby too ! } .
. 4 . already thinking of cosy coats .
. 5 . jUst a little bit adOrable . Small Steps are Giant Leaps .
. 6 . jUst a little bit adOrable . Drawn By Rebecca Jones .
. 7 . in need of some instant comfort . & . a little bit of sparkle ?
. 8 . my thought for today .
. 9 . in need of an excuse for cake ?  National Cupcake Week starts on Monday .
{ yes . a whole week of cupcakes ! } 
. & . finally . it's Pastry Week on the BakeOff . starting with the Danish Breakfast variety .

. have a very sweet weekEnd .

Tuesday, September 13

. the fAntastic mR dAhl . { a very hAppy 100th birthdAy to you } .


today is Roald Dahl Day . & . this year marks his 100th birthday . i had been hoping to post this yesterday in advance of the day itself . but . had forgotten quite how many wonderful tales he had written . & . so got slightly { ok, very } distracted looking for the right images for this post . 

i think my first Roald Dahl memory has to be the film " Charlie and the Chocolate Factory " . though the original film was actually " Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory " . released in 1971 with the, now late, Gene Wilder as the eponymous Willy Wonka, it still has the ability to capture the imaginations of children & adults alike . 

the first Roald Dahl Day took place in 2006 and shows the lasting charm that his books continue to have . the annual event sees parties and book readings and the Dahlicious DressUp Day held in aid of the children's charity in his name . as this year marks the centenary of Dahl's birth, there are a few extra special events happening;  today there is an after school birthday party at the museum . on saturday there is a whole host of events happening under the guise of the wonderfully titled " museum of the unexpected " where you can smell . listen . write . explore . watch . & . eat your way around the activities . for adults there is the intriguing Dinner with the Twits . a gloriously gruesome immersive dining experience . hosted by Roald's despicable duo .

. 1 . 2 . 3 .
{ beautiful illustrations for James & The Giant Peach } 

. 4 . 5 . 6 .
{ did you know . as a boy Roald Dahl was a taster for Cadbury }

. 7 . 8 . 9 .
{ curious canapes . bristling bird pie . perilous puddings }

. 10 . 11 . 12 .
{ if you are good . life is good . Matilda }

. hAppy birthdAy mR dAhl .

. have a hAppy dAy .

Saturday, September 10

. hAppy weekEnd .


. 1 . lOving this painted by Eithne Roberts
{ showing at the AffordableArtFair in bristol this weekend } .
. 2 . wAtching this being created by Sam Pierpoint .
. 3 . drEamscape . dreamers can't be tamed .
{ beautiful new editorial for PapierMache }
. 4 . stOp & smell the roses whilst sUmmer still lingers .
. 5 . create your own blooms ready for aUtumn . 
{ embroidered blooms from bOtanical artist Fleur Lyon } .
. 6 . a touch of grandeur for Autumn from MarMarCopenhagen .
. 7 . cOunting down to Roald Dahl Day on the 13thSeptember .
{ if you are good . life is good . Matilda } .
. 8 . thOught for today .
. 9 . prObably The prettiest coffee pot i've ever seen .
{ from one of The prettiest blogs i've even seen } .
. & . finally . it's bAtter week on the BakeOff . hellO churros & chocolate . yUm !

. have a hAppy dAy .

Thursday, September 8

. inspired . #11 .

i love this time of year . summer is still lingering a little . some days are bright and sunny . & . cardi's and coats are still a distant thought . but . autumn makes it's presence felt . nights are darker and cosier . the hues in the garden are changing from glorious greens to warmer golden tones . there's a hint of what's to come . but . it's not quite here yet .

i was lucky enough to hear Jo Malone speak at this weeks Autumn Fair . she is a very inspiring woman who speaks from the heart . but isn't afraid to talk about the realities of life either . she spoke at length about making mistakes . about being human . about getting it wrong . about life being hard . she also spoke about life being an adventure . about trusting your instincts . about taking time to be inspired in order to feed your creativity .

so today's post is inspired by the changing seasons;  by the spices & tones of Jo's latest scent Smoked Plum and Leather;  by this Back To School time of year;  by all the lovely cosiness we have to look forward to in the coming Autumn months .

. goodbye summer . back to school . plum and leather . hello autumn .
. 1 . 2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 6 . 7 . 8 . 9 . 10 .

. for lots more inspiration and images take a look at my Pinterest board .

. have a hAppy dAy .