Saturday, 20 April 2013


If there's one thing I love more than cake, it's hoarding. (Himself thinks I'm a hobo in training!) I have bags and bags of tins and glass jars and I have GREAT intentions of doing some crafty things to them! (Thanks to Pinterest!)

Here is a little tutorial I came across; (I don't know what website because I didn't bookmark it, wish I could credit the author :-/ )

 1 Hammer (or heavy shoe)
 1 Nail (Not the stick-on ones, one of those masonry ones the boys use!)
 Some cord or an old shoe lace. (Optional)
 1 Tea-light candle

-Take an empty tin (or can) and give it a good scrubbing and peel off all of the labels.(Instead of scrubbing, simply pop it in the dishwasher)
-If you can't get the glue off use a bit of nail varnish remover, I find that helps for most sticky bits.
- When it's all clean, fill the tin with water and pop it in the freezer overnight. (WTF?)
* This is so when you try to hammer your pattern onto the tin, it won't crush or put the tin out of shape.

- If you want, with a Sharpie, you can draw your desired pattern onto the tin. (Please excuse my wonky heart! Hehe)

- Take your hammer and whack the nail so it punctures the tin, continue to finish your pattern.

I know my nails are dirty, it's called manual labour ;-)

- When finished, allow your ice to dissolve and drain in the sink, then pop in your tea-light. Easy peasy and fab, right?

If you want to use these tins as hanging tea-lights simply puncture a hole either side at the top of the tin and thread some rope through.

Friday, 5 April 2013

The allotment..

It looks so bleak at this time of year!

As the weather was atrocious last year and we were over run with snails and slugs, the poor allotment was left to over-grow. I did have some small raised beds planted in the back "secret garden" yet the yield was little to nothing. Lets just say the snails were well fed last year. As it's now coming into April, it's about time to start preparing the ground/beds for planting in May. Some say you are ready to plant in April, but I find the last chance/risk of frost is after the second week of May. The climate has changed so much over the last few years that the sowing and pricking out times have been later and later. 2 years ago I was caught out in May, it actually snowed the first week!! A good way to test if your soil is warm enough for planting is by sticking your elbow in it, if it's somewhat warm you are ready. Another way they used to test the soil in ye olden times was to pull the gruds/knickers down and sit on it but you don't want to frighten the neighbours, right? :)

This week, Himself and Meself got busy! (Dirty minds!) On his day off we armed ourselves with all of the gardening tools and some muscle. The raised beds were all over the place last year and I wasn't very happy with the layout. Behind the raised beds we have another 11ft to the back fence and I was hoping that this year we could put a sitting area in there. We've been using that whole area for mulching/compost so that's going to be a huge job to clear out! (I had planned to lay out the allotment like this next picture because it was so quaint, but as always, any plans I make Himself wants to do the opposite.) It gets great sun in the evening as it faces west so it's a sin not to use it!

I was on Pinterest this week looking for inspiration for the back area, I found simple and it doesn't look like it needs alot of up keep.

I love the use of the bamboo, it makes a really relaxing rustling sound in a breeze!