New Peas

Grow little peas. Grow!2

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Black Currents


Bursting with vitamin C and antioxidants, this season’s black-current harvest is a bumper crop.

Dozens of cuttings taken from just one plant, bought just a few years ago, we now have three good-sized rows of black current bushes affording us enough to make several jars of jam, put a few kilos of fruit in the freezer and still have thousands of juicy currents left to munch on whenever we wander into the garden.


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Simple Socks

Striped Socks

Once you start wearing your own hand-knitted socks, you’ll never want to go back to machine-made, store-bought socks ever again. All that’s needed are four skinny sticks (sock needles) and a length of yarn (sock wool) then you knit round and round and round, with a few fancy turns at the heel, until you get to the end. Simple!

After a friend gave me a sock knitting lesson several years ago, I’ve been addicted to the art of bespoke socks ever since. I have a drawer full of the little beauties.

The socks in the picture above were made with some blue sock yarn, from Knitworld, bought specifically to combine with leftover bits in my stash that are too short to make anything useful on their own. Combined with some smudgy-green, self-patterning sock yarn, left over from one of the first pairs I ever made, I’ve ended up with a rather smart pair of useful socks.

Details on Ravelry 


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Venturing North to Gore Bay

We took a leisurely drive north, today, for the first time since a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck North Canterbury last November and closed off most of the South Island’s Northern section of State Highway One. As the roads still haven’t been cleared all the way to the top of the island, there were no trucks and very, very few cars on the road with us – bliss.

At Gore Bay, we took a long walk to the cliffs at the southern end where we were sheltered from the southerly breeze and felt surprisingly warm for the middle of winter. We admired driftwood, huts, stones, shells and intrepid plants clinging to the soft cliff faces.

Gore Bay

Walking south


Driftwood hut


Piece of paua (abalone) shell


Textures and colours underfoot

We stopped at the Cathedral Cliffs lookout, just south of the bay, to take some snaps and admire the view.


Cathedral Cliffs – Gore Bay

On the way back, we stopped at Two Rivers Cafe in Cheviot for a late lunch. Delicious food, excellent service and a descent pot of tea. A good day.

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Shortest Day


Every year I watch the sun rise later and later, gradually creeping north along the mountain ridge line to the north of my small holding, until it reaches its final destination on the north-west slope of Mt Cass. Tomorrow, it will begin making its dependable journey south again.

In the Garden

A light northwesterly brought an unseasonably warm day. Perfect for taking stock of what’s still in flower in the middle of winter. Not much, but still enough to delight.

mid-winter flowers

Asylum, Mexican tarragon (just going over but lots of new buds to look forward to), euphorbia, hebe, rosa mutabulis, rosa Glamis Castle, calendular (everywhere), self-sown hebes, rosemary (and friend)


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First Post

While I familiarise myself with the WordPress knobs and dials, I thought I’d share a recent shot of my cat, Hazel, intently watching a young rabbit in our garden.



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