Sunday, January 5, 2014

a weekend...

I've spent the weekend putting together a herb garden at the bottom of the back stairs...




...and planting some kale and pea seeds for the nutriblasts Mr E and I have for breakfast every day. It's so hot and humid here that we should have them ready to harvest in 10-14 days...


It's the end of the mango season in North Queensland so Mr E and I bought a couple of buckets from a roadside farmer on Saturday, along with a huge bag of large passionfruits. One bucket had unripened green mangoes for Mr E to use in his first attempt at making mango pickles, but the second bucket was full of ripe mangoes which I peeled and chopped. We now have a freezer full of mango pulp for smoothies and 1-minute icecreams...



We also bought a big box of fruit from the organic grocer, and after I cut up the pineapple for use in today's nutriblasts Mr E planted out the top of the pineapple. In about two years, if we still live here, we'll harvest another pineapple...


I'm looking at using a variety of containers to plant more herbs into. This is  a favourite tea pot of mine, but alas it spills tea everywhere when it's being poured as the spout is not the best shape, so I'm going to have Mr E drill holes in the bottom and I'll pop some sage inside...



After all that gardening and food preparation I freshened up the dining table with the very first tablecloth I ever made...


It was 2005, and I'd only been stitching a few months when this pattern caught my eye. We were living in a caravan park and homeschooling, while Mr E did some temporary teaching in the gorgeous town of Armidale. To keep myself busy after the children's lessons I had taught myself to embroider. I don't remember whose design this was, but I found it in a magazine and loved it...


For years this tablecloth has only been used to cover the table on birthdays, but as our life has changed a lot since 2005 I thought it was time to let it become a regular visitor to our dining room from now on.

With my table covered, I brewed a coffee and sat down to read a new 'favourite' English craft magazine...

This is the second issue here in Australia, as they take months to arrive from the UK, and it's even better than the first. I love this car and caravan project!


It's almost 3pm on Sunday afternoon now, and I'm about to settle in and watch the Brisbane International tennis final between Lleyton Hewitt and Roger Federer while Mr E brews his pot of mango pickles.
Stitching on my lap, iced tea by my side. Nice.
What are you up to this weekend?

hugs
 jenny

19 comments:

margaret said...

love your tablecloth, a small world I put a old one on the other day and added a photo of it on my blog too.
Not seen the magazine here in the UK so will have a look next time I go into the city

Jenny of Elefantz said...

It's only the second issue, Margaret - and not popular yet, but I think it will be.

Anonymous said...

Such a sweet tablecloth, Jenny. My weekend has been spent mowing lawn, potting up some vegies that were long overdue. At the moment I'm sewing some blocks together for a quilt. All in all a good weekend, I feel like I've achieved quite a bit. Enjoy the tennis.
Sue

Jenny of Elefantz said...

It's a lovely feeling when you accomplish tasks. Nail biting third set!!

Mhairi said...

Do you freeze mango cheeks. I read somewhere that you can and I was wondering if you had any success with this.
Here in SA we are paying so much for mangos that I am drooling at your mango pulp. My mum used to make a passionfruit cordial that was so good. I love passionfruit on icecream. Hope you have a good year.

Vickie said...

sounds like a very relaxing time..your tablecloth deserves to be on the table more often it sure is beautiful..hmmm that mag looks interesting, cheers Vickie

Susan said...

That sounds like a lot of activity . . .shame about the leaky tea pot but a great idea to plant in it - though I think I'd try for geraniums....I'm a matchy matchy girl!

Lin said...

Love your herb garden Jenny. My last weekend of a 3 week trip to England - back to France tomorrow. I will look out for the magazine when we do our final shop in the morning. Meanwhile enjoying a last afternoon with family.

Edi said...

What is better than a productive, relaxing weekend. Sounds like bliss to me. Gearing up for another snow storm (this one is promising 12+ inches). Glad for all the sewing and stitching that's ready and waiting. Now to just finish the laundry, dishes and dinner . . . :)

Love'n'hugs.

Evie H said...

Sounds as if you're totally enjoying your new home and making it yours. I love your taking us on your journey. Oh, how I miss mango pickles! Haven't had any since leaving Hawaii. They never have green ones in the market. =/

Cindy said...

Since it is snowing and going to be below zero tonight here in Indiana, USA, I am more than a little envious of your gardening! I even had to show your pics to my husband:) That tablecloth is beautiful. Love the embroidery.
Cindy

Sigi G said...

Jenny I just love your deck - it just relaxes me to look at a picture of it. I enjoy seeing all your beautiful embroidery projects!
Right now for this weekend - we are shoveling snow - and shoveling snow. But that can be cosy too as long as you don't have to go out.

desertskyquilts said...

It looks like you were good from the get go, too. Lovely tablecloth. I love herb gardens. It's something I can do on my back deck in the warm months. The Rosemary is quite a bush now and has made it through 3 winters. It's going to be zero tomorrow night, (-17.78C) and I'm interested to see if it can handle that much cold. It sits right by my bedroom sliding glass door, where I think some heat seeps out, so we'll see.

Yours looks wonderful, very pretty, like everything you do, and I love the teapot you're putting the sage into. I plant pineapple sage every year, because I just love the flavor! I tried blackberry and chocolate and orange, and they are all good, but pineapple is the best!

Heather said...

Must come and have a coffee on the deck, as it looks so cool and relaxing. Love the herb garden, nothing better than adding fresh herbs in the cooking pot.

Jenny of Elefantz said...

I froze all the meat from my mangoes, Mhairi, discarding just the seed and the skin...and in this morning's nutriblast they were amazing.

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Stay warm, Edi...perfect weather for stitching. x

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Mr E made about 3 kilos of them yesterday...now to let them sit for a few weeks before we opne a jar. My house reeked of spices and mango yesterday! LOL!

Jenny of Elefantz said...

I imagine it's lovely to watch the snow through the window of a cosy home...x

Jenny of Elefantz said...

The pot is on, Heather! Come soon... xx