29 May 2013

Man does not live by bread alone...

...but a good loaf sure does warm the heart!

My very first attempt at bread baking was surprisingly successful.

My recipe was a bit hit and miss as I pulled it from several different recipes, but despite the fact that it didn't rise as well as I'd have liked, it tasted wonderful!

I've made 3-4 loaves since then, each one better than the last.

I wish I had more time for baking; 
this busy woman's dream is the idea of a bread making machine.

There are so many different breads I'd love to try out, but I'm hoping that the summer holidays will give me plenty of time to develop my culinary repertoire. 

Practice makes perfect. 


28 May 2013

take this cup from me...

It's amazing what you can do with a mug, some porcelain pens and an oven.

Luke 22:43

24 May 2013

les premières étapes de ballet...

I began my training in ballet when I was 2 and a half years old... which all started with little me running around in a circle waving a scarf in the air and trying to stand on my tip toes...  I danced in my first show when I was 3 years old, and completely fell in love!

Like most young girls I loved ballet in every way; loved watching it, dancing it, dreaming it...
But at the age of 17, after years of exams and shows and competitions, I traded my ballet shoes for books and dropped out of dance school to focus on my academic education.

I miss dancing all the time.
Whenever I see a ballet or make a late night dash to the dance studio for some contemporary therapy and 'introvert time' by myself, my mind spirals off into a little daydream of how different my life would be if I'd have chosen the alternative path in those big life decisions...

Three A Levels and a degree later, and I finally got to exercise my passion for ballet and teach this little one her first ballet lesson...

My Godparent's eldest daughter Naomi was so excited about the tiny little ballet shoes I'd bought her, along with a cute Cath Kids' bag for her to keep them in.

For me she'd drawn a picture of the two of us in ballet dresses, going out to a tea-date at Lee Rosy's, our favourite Nottingham tea house.  She'd even wrapped it up in special yellow paper.

We banished her three siblings and the 'grown-ups' to the sitting room, and together we did battement tendus, pliés, sautés, port de bras...  To her it was 'skipping', 'jumping', 'pointing', 'the flower picking dance'...  All of which she insisted on teaching her older brother when we'd finished!

Teaching Naomi was so rich an experience.
I don't know why I didn't start sooner!
She had so much fun and absorbed what I'd taught her like a sponge!
I rewarded her with a tea-date in Lee Rosy's - naturally.

As Naomi took her first step into ballet, I took my first step into teaching.

les premières étapes... que Dieu utilise les

22 May 2013

Breakfast at Annie's

"Breakfast is the most important meal of the day"...

...and if you're anything like me then you'll need something mildly exciting to get you out of bed in the morning!  

Homemade Breakfast Granola

3 cups of rolled oats
1 cup of wholemeal flower
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of sea salt
1/3 cup of coconut oil
1/3 cup of honey
1/4 cup of apple juice or water
1 tsp of vanilla extract
(you can add 1/2 cup of cocoa powder if you're feeling really naughty!)
dried fruit (I use raisins) to add after cooking

Preheat oven to 150 degrees C / 325 degrees F

Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl.

Combine wet ingredients in a jug (you may need to pop the coconut oil into the microwave for 20seconds to melt it into a liquid for easier mixing).

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well.

Lightly grease a baking tray and spread the mixture evenly crumbling lightly with your fingers.

Cook for around 45 minutes checking at regular intervals, moving & turning the granola to avoid burning (the aroma wafting through your home at this point is amazing - enjoy it!)

Leave the granola out to cool before decanting it into a nice big jar.

By this point I can't resist pinching one to eat, but be careful not to burn your tongue in greedy anticipation... oops!

11 May 2013

Unplayed piano...

Mike is a great guy I met here in Nottingham who is based in Hopkinson's near Nottingham Train Station.  He restores furniture and does so fantastically!  His creativity is astounding and his ambition is enviable, his projects bringing life to old pieces in a truly artistic way.

Last year he stumbled upon an old piano at an auction...

My friend Imogen and I went over to have a tinkle on the keys and decided that it wasn't too out of tune.  Mike quickly got to work putting his hand to this bizarre project; he confessed he knew nothing about piano's but wanted to give it a try and see what he could come up with.

- Photograph by Jon Brown -

Pictured above is Elijah-Jack, the 3rd child of my God-parents Joshua & Irdi.
Mike completely restored the piano and finished it with matt black paint that gave it a real sophisticated look.  I felt some strange emotional connection to this particular project so I hooked him up with my God-parents who I knew would take great care of it.

Irdi plays piano beautifully, and their son Ransom aged 6 is taking lessons.
Elijah-Jack will be writing sonatas by the time he reaches 6 I'm sure...
This wonderfully restored piece fills the home with joy and beautiful music.
Made with love, played with love.

9 May 2013

My 'Desert Island Discs' top 10...

Okay I tried.

There was no way I was getting it down to 10!

My list began with about 50 and I had to slash them off violently with a pen in great pain and difficulty.
Ideally I'd take my iPod, but 80GB worth of music is kinda cheating I suppose...
(not that I haven't cheated already - oops...)

So without further delay, in no particular order:

  1. The Smiths - ‘The Smiths’
  2. Damien Rice - 9
  3. Foals - Total Life Forever
  4. Aradhna - Satsang
  5. Blink 182 - Greatest Hits
  6. Lucy Rose - Like I Used To
  7. Bon Iver - For Emma Forever Ago
  8. Dir En Grey - The Marrow of a Bone
  9. Philip Glass - Violin Concerto 2nd Movement
  10. Tom Waits - Alice
  11. Tom Waits - Closing Time
  12. Laura Marling - Alas I Cannot Swim
  13. The Rend Collective Experiment - Homemade Worship by Handmade People
  14. José González - Veneer
  15. Rat Pack Compilation
  16. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Show Your Bones
  17. Gomez - How We Operate
  18. Passion Pit - Chunk of Change EP
  19. Fleet Foxes - Sun Giant EP
  20. The Swell Season - Once
  21. The Civil Wars - Barton Hollow
  22. Vivaldi - The Four Seasons
  23. Daughter - If You Leave
  24. The Head and The Heart - self-titled
  25. The Maccabees - Wall Of Arms

8 May 2013

Tis the season for a picnic...

Or at least it was...
Two days of sunshine and I spent the majority of it reading Plato and being ill... Typical!

I found this photograph of a picnic I had at Wollaton Park near the end of my university life.
This was only last year, but it seems like a lifetime ago!

Hopefully my picnic basket will see the sunshine soon...
Rain rain go away...

7 May 2013

Some of Nottingham's little treasures...

So, I'm pretty blessed to live in such an amazing city full of quirky coffee shops and treasure trove tea rooms.

If you're ever in Nottingham, I'd strongly recommend hitting some of the independent café's found in the depths of Hockley.

You're guaranteed to find something tantalising to tickle your fancy!

One of my favourite's at Lee Rosy's - Lemon Meringue Pie!

Hartley's offers a 'London Fog' - Earl Grey tea with a shot of vanilla & foamed milk.
Sounds bizarre but I promise it's scrumptious!

About Me

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I was born and grew up in the city of Wolverhampton where I went to school and studied A-Levels. I lived in Walsall for the two years of my life before coming to university in Nottingham where I now live. I graduated in Summer 2012 with a degree in Theology, and currently study an MA in Systematic & Philosophical Theology. I enjoy contemporary dance, travelling, literature, live music, being a connoisseur of hot beverages and liberating the oppressed. I have written for 'The Mic' magazine and held the position of Editor for the Women's Network magazine, 'Artemis'. I wouldn't be anything without my God, the beautiful author of life. Any feedback on my blogs is much appreciated.