Welcome to our blog.

….. We make
….. We explore
….. We nuture

Three children (16, 14, 12)*** Two parents *** one dog *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging since January 2010, about everyday happenings that bring us joy.

You can find me here

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Just a thought….

“A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe.”


Thank you….

  • Carol Not only is your bag practical, it is also very cute. Most reuseable bags aren't very attractive but I use them anyway. 16 Jul
  • Crummy Mummy We've been up at our allotment watering every day too - could really do with some meaningful rain now, although I'm not complaining! #MMBC 16 Jul
  • Kim Carberry What a fantastic idea and a fab looking bag. So pretty. I love your sewing machine too. x 15 Jul
  • sam What a well timed shot X #mmbc 15 Jul
  • Craft Mother I really hope you do get the gardening bug. Wonderful way to spend your time. 15 Jul
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I made a produce bag

Anyone else trying to cut back on their single use plastics? It’s an ongoing process for me, but #PlasticFreeJuly is this month and it’s encouraging me. I’m under no illusions that I can eliminate all the single use overnight. It will take longer. One item at a time.

Today, I checked reusable produce bags off my list. Instead of using the plastic or paper bags when I buy fruit and veg, I can use my produce bag. A drawstring bag, made from light weight fabric. It’s not transparent, but see through enough for a shop’s checkout staff to see how many peaches are in the bag.

I used a toggle and elastic rescued from a small bag that held one of the children’s waterproof coats. The fabric is a net curtain from when we lived in Italy, when I was a child. I call them net curtains but they were more cosmetic. All the windows had fixed mosquito nets and heavy metal roller venetian blinds, blocking the view. These nets used to hang at the side to soften the look, especially in the bedrooms. Thinking back, I’m not sure it worked.

(One summer, I remember a swarm of bees taking up residence in the box casing for the blinds, in one of the bedrooms, making it unusable. The bees rather objected to their hive being invaded by a clanking metal structure, every morning. If memory serves me right, that bedroom was out of action for a while. No-one went in there. I don’t remember what happened in the end.)

Anyway. Not your classic British net curtains. The fabric is more lightweight chiffon. Like a scarf. The curtains had a channel at the top for the pole or elastic that it used to hang from. I re used that part for the drawstring. Fortunately the elastic I had, was just a little bit shorter than the width of the curtain, giving the final bag a bunched opening, which doesn’t flop. I cut the fabric to make a square bag and sewed around, leaving the top open.

It was lovely weather, this weekend, and I took my hand cranked Singer machine outside to sew. I used French seams. The fabric tends to fray and is see through, so I wanted to hide the edges. I also think it makes the join stronger and less likely to break. An advantage to making your own. I know it will hold a good number of apples and not split as I put it in my basket. Chasing renegade apples, making a break for freedom around a market floor, is not top of my list of things to do.

The bag was quick to make. Works a dream for the peaches I tried it out with. I have enough fabric left to make several bags. I plan to make one for a baguette too, rather than the long plastic bags that they use in shops. When did they stop wrapping them with a small square of paper for handling purposes? (Showing my age?)

This bag is on a mission today. Youngest is making fruit crumble in food tech at school. The fruit is measured out and in the bag, waiting to be taken in. No single use bags. After that, I’ll roll it up and keep it in my bag, so I don’t forget it when I’m shopping. Added bonus, it will be easy to wash.

This is not the only single use plastic I’ve swapped this month, but the list can wait to a later time. I’m pleased with my home made bags. I’ve recycled fabric and fixings that could easily have been thrown out as their original use had long since gone. They are pretty too. A win-win all round!

The proof will be the eating of the pudding, as they say. Do you use re-usable produce bags?

Other side of the petal – My Sunday Photo

And what did the beetle see as she peeped over the top of the petal?

Female thick legged flower beetle. The males have the thick back legs, in case you’re wondering.

Garden (word of the week)

 Another week of gorgeous weather. We’ve eaten out in the garden most evenings. I’ve been working late and opted for picnic style, cold meals, so I can cut down on preparation time. The kind of meals that transport me straight into holiday mode, when eaten al fresco. School is winding down for the children, which means they are right there with me.

We’ve spent a fair amount of time in the garden. Everyone takes turns to help me water in the evenings. The kitchen garden has doubled in growth just this week. Stopping myself from wishing the time to fly, but I am looking forward to heading for the kitchen garden again, rather than the shops for all of our fresh produce needs. Already enjoying salad straight from the garden.

The garden takes a fair bit of work. No doubt about that. I have fresh appreciation for all the childhood gardens I remember. I grow poppies and big daisies in one part of the garden, which are the plants I remember from my grandparents’ garden. These flowers always seemed to tower over me, as I ran around their garden back in the 70s. The strange thing is, that the daisies, I grow, still tower over me. The poppies may still be from seeds from their garden, but I’m not sure. It’s been too long*.

(*Reference to me remembering not the viability of the poppy seeds. I read that it’s been shown that 50 years on and poppy seeds can still germinate.)

Lots of badminton and ball games being played out in the garden too. I love hearing the laughter. We’ve also been crafting outside. I’ve taken my knitting outside, a few times for a break. I pull a bench into the orchard. It’s covered in lichen and moss, which makes a great natural cushion. Favourite spot in the middle of the day.

The children made the most of painting outside last weekend. I love their artwork. The thyme plant, is doing well in Youngest’s blue baboon wall planter.

Apart from a week filled with garden time (update: the garden goddess has worked her magic), we’ve been missing one member of the family as Eldest teen is off on a science school trip. Judging by her texts (few and far between), it sounds like it’s been long hours of actual school work and she’s ready to come home. Bit different from her usual school trips which involve going abroad and sound distinctly more like holidays than work.

It is the quiet before the storm. Next week looks like a much busier week, so I’m glad for a quieter time this week. I’ll still have garden to escape to.

Joining in Anne’s Word of the Week. My word is garden.


Word of the Week linky


There have been cases when people lifted my photos and words, and used them without credit to me or asking permission first. Using them for their own commercial gain. I have now added a level of security to deter people from doing this. Apologies to people who do play nicely. If you would like to use any of my photos, please contact me.

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