We had Joe's birthday party on Saturday. Friday was spent cleaning and tidying, then Saturday morning was a blur of baking, gazebo-building, bunting-tying and preparing lots of food (including the cake). I'd seen a picture of it in one of my books and thought, 'I'll bake that'. So I duly bought the ingredients and didn't bother to read the instructions until the day of the party... There was a bit of a faff as it involved separating egg whites and whisking and spooning in slowly and gradually etc. but it worked perfectly: the whitest, lightest sponge cake with a pink filling of blended mascarpone and raspberry jam.
Joe was keen to get at it (pictured here with his aunt, who we're visiting later this week - she has a lovely allotment to explore).
Our little house and garden did us proud. We fitted in over twenty-five people comfortably and tucked into a tasty barbecue. Most importantly Joe loved it. In fact, he was inspired to take his first steps yesterday - another milestone reached!
It's feeling very autumnal at the moment. It's been dry but very blustery and I wore my warm pyjamas last night. We'll be unearthing the heavy quilt next...
Jay's off work this week. He took Joe out this morning (to look at those rucksack/baby carrier contraptions as we're planning a blackberry-picking excursion) so I got on with some craft fair things. Mainly linocuts (like this beetroot print). I tend to make sketches in a book first then stylise and simplify them as linocutting very detailed drawings isn't something I'm going to attempt just yet.
I tend to draw from memory so my sketches aren't always botanically correct but that doesn't matter. I'll call it the artist's prerogative.
So I sat and mixed inks and printed away, listening to Radio 4. There was an interesting article on Woman's Hour about bibliotherapy. Not something I was previously aware of but very thought-provoking. That's a whole other post I suppose (although I'm actually reading my first novel since becoming a mummy - A Mysterious Affair of Style, by Gilbert Adair).
I love September - I always think of it as my personal New Year. So much to look forward to: comfort food, warm clothes, woolly blankets, bracing walks, woodsmoke... and an invitation to pick plums from a heavily-laden tree (belonging to another aunt).
And these wonderful things.
Hope you're as excited about autumn coming as I am!