Saturday, 24 December 2011

A very Marmalade Cottage Christmas

For the last couple of weeks, the reinventors have been planning the inaugural Marmalade Cottage Christmas.  Last night it came together.  With 12 adult and two infant guests, there was probably enough food for 20 and presents for everyone.

This isn't exactly a hand-made gift, but near enough.  The practical reinventor found a block of organic glycerine soap and melted it down, adding kaffir lime leaves to the bottom layer and lemon rind to the top.  She also made some old-fashioned Bay Rum aftershave (mostly vodka, so if it doesn't work as aftershave, she supposes the recipient could drink it...) Others unwrapped jam or relish and a selection of vintage gifts found at op shops and garage sales.

Brown paper packages tied up with string under the tree. 

And the very festive dinner in the back garden.  Dips and nibblies to begin, punch and wine, turkey, glazed ham, falafel, coleslaw, potato salad, baked potatoes, braised lentils, beans with beetroot and fetta, then gluten-free orange cake, fruit and pavlova with the traditional Australian topping of crushed peppermint crisp.

There are several weeks' worth of leftovers in the fridge!

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Surviving remnant

The front garden of Marmalade Cottage wasn't ever (as far as the reinventors can tell) much to look at.  When we moved in, it was brown and sad.

Just hanging on were three hydrangeas.  The plan was to plant out the front garden with masses of flowers - all white in contrast with the red brick of the cottage.  Hydrangeas are rarely white.

The practical reinventor cut the hydrangeas back savagely and applied glyphosate.

This is what happened:

Looks like they're staying.

A long time coming

The reinventors inherited rather a lot of Marmalade Cottage's former owner's possessions.  Some of it was quite nice, the rest was this:

Then it was this:

More correctly, it was about a third more than this.  The enterprising and desperate of the area have removed quite a lot of saleable scrap metal.

We're just pleased our stables now look like this: