Thursday, 31 May 2012

Fruity Metcalfe's New Hat

My wonderful miniature toy Wire Fox terrier known to me as Fruity Metcalfe, is sporting a rather fetching hat at the moment in preparation for the Jubilee weekend, respect an' all that. I thought you might like a peek.
Can you see the cat on the hat? That's almost a poem isn't it?

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Beauty Will Out.

Couldn't resist posting this wonderful photo of Debo's grand daughter Stella Tennant. Totes amazing.

Monday, 28 May 2012


Part 3 of 3 tonight and not to be missed.

I'm hoping we may see a little more of Debo tonight, although she wasn't very well throughout 2011 when this series was made.
Still I'm developing a great affection for the Duke and Duchess. I think Chatsworth is in very safe hands indeed.

BBC 1 @9.00pm.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Eurovision Fever

Well not exactly a fever, but for the first time in donkey's years I will be watching tonight.
I'm really looking forward to it, and for once it's a 'real' singer representing Britain.

Go the Hump :) 

When I was but a mere tot we used to send the very best pop singers of the day and we were thrilled when we won. Which we seemed to on a fairly regular basis, or maybe my memory is playing tricks?

I picked up some scrummy suitably continental food from the food marquee at the Heathfield Country show this morning.

And from these culinary delights will be preparing a Euro meal of mezes and tapas served with a perfectly chilled bottle of Morrison's finest half price Processco.

Country shows are the best, here are a few pics from today

Lots and lots of lovely creatures there today as well but difficult to get good pics because they were surrounded by adoring country show goers.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Now There's Only One

I was driving home tonight after a very tricky long day at work, feeling very grumpy, suddenly I noticed the huge red sun in the sky and Robin Gibb was on the radio.

The world suddenly seemed a better place, R.I.P Robin Gibb 1949-2012.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Knitted Projects

Hello all, thought I'd post a pic of my finished New Zealand wool cushion, now laying resplendent on the spare bed in the garden room.
I was very pleased with the way the honeycomb pattern turned out, very tactile, everyone at my knitting group loved it. It would be a nice stitch to use for scarves and bags methinks.

So what's the next project? Well I had a mind to do some crochet, but then spotted a very cute pattern in my Rowan subscription magazine.
To be honest I have never made a knitted toy in my life, but I do know someone who is mad about owls, and it is her birthday soon. Not that I'm saying I'm making it for her of course :)
Orwell The Owl Doorstop. I have some lovely yarn in my stash just right for this little boy, and heaps of vintage buttons to choose from for his eyes. I'm not sure his beak looks right though, maybe it's the angle of the photo, I might have to effect some rhinoplasty.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Garden Update

It seems dear reader the minute my lovely husband started to dismantle our second hand greenhouse, the skys opened and it hasn't stopped raining since.

He and the guy helping him need a good dry day to reconstruct the greenhouse. So hopefully next Saturday it should be up.
Probably a bit late for this year, but we know it's gonna be at least two years before this garden project will be finished.

We went to a  friends birthday party yesterday, it was an all dayer, right through to watching Chelsea play football last night. We were home by eleven, but I feel shattered today. Must be my age :)

Still I have done some work in the garden today. Clearing a bed for the strawberry plants that came free with the green house.

I also helped Mr.S&P plant a lovely Wisteria at the side of the house, it will look beautiful but also will help to conceal an old concrete coal hole that we now store a few logs in.
As Stanley Baxter famously said in his best Southern Belle accent "Wisteria on the outside and hysteria on the inside".

Friday, 18 May 2012

Turn Your Back For One Minute

Whilst you're unpacking your shopping, and there's someone taking up residence in some chazza shop tissue.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

My Cosmopolitan Blog

Good evening dear readers. It pleases me greatly that more and more people seem to be discovering my blog. And I'm pretty sure that by now I have folk that regularly drop in, but my big question is who are you?

 I look at my 'audience' and it seems a lot of people in the USA and Europe pop by, but also far flung folk as well.

Now I don't like reading 'needy' blogs or blogs that tell you to like them on Face book and all that old nonsense, but I would like to hear from you if you read my blog occasionally/regularly/often/fairly often. Post a comment why don't ya?

Let's get acquainted :)

image found @

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Beryl, Betty and Iris

I love this image, thank you jellyjamdorset blog. It shows just how beautiful a collection of utility china can be, the ice cream pastels look sensational don't they? No pattern or overly fancy stylish shapes, just a quiet harmony of colour. It's not often I like understated but utility china is definitely doing it for me right now.

Funnily enough I used to really hate Woods Ware, I think because we had to use it at my secondary school in 'Housecraft' lessons to serve up the truly terrible food we used to make. Once we were old enough we could practice holding dinner parties in a small purpose built flat in the school. Now I'm wondering what else the teachers might have got up to in that flat, didn't occur to me at the time of course:)

This is my first major purchase of Wood's Ware, meet Beryl 
and Iris
As seen on t.v don't you know?
Mrs. Nellie Last shared a utility cuppa at the Red Cross shop.
And of course top level English spies wouldn't drink out of anything else.
I think it's as every bit as elegant as this French crockery from Dibor, but soooooo much cheaper, you can still afford to put some decent food on the plates.

Woods Ware is also super sturdy and has been kicking about the planet for over 70 years, so you know it's gonna last you. 

I have to finish this post with news of another Beryl that has been kicking about for the longest time, 90 years in fact. Together with her friend Betty (86) they have just won a Sony radio award for the best entertainment programme, broadcasting on radio Humberside.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

The Jerwood, Family Friendly Gallery Hastings

My boy Jack popped home for a visit a couple of weekends ago, when Mr. S&P was away up t'north visiting his mates and getting food poisoning, tra la la.

We had a day out together and beetled along to Hastings, it's only about 1 hour and 10 mins from us. We both wanted to visit the new and much opposed Jerwood Gallery, (note to self stop calling it Jedwood, so uncool and not even funny:).
We got there early because parking is always an issue in Hastings, and had a slap up breakfast on the front. 

I love early mornings by the seaside, the light is quite beautiful and everybody is busying themselves setting up for the day, whilst the gulls are making a right old commotion, all the sounds and smells of a great British seaside holiday.

 The Gallery was fairly empty and felt very spacious but it is a small collection. The permanent collection consists of 20th and 21st century British art.
At present they are also showing the work of Rose Wylie.
I do find 'naive' art quite challenging, but that's a good thing right? Jack loved the work. So something for everyone.

And of course we visited 'Made in Hastings' and 'Judges Bakery' where we bought some cakes for afternoon tea, Jack had a raspberry meringue the size of his head.

We poked our noses into most of the vintage shops and rounded the day off with a fresh fish purchase for our supper. A brilliant day.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Poor Girl's Cassoulet

Sausage casserole has never really appealed to me. Don't get me wrong I love a good banger but next a nice fried egg or in a sarnie, yum. It's got to be good quality mind, lots of free range meat and herbs, The Black Farmer's or Duchy's are my favourite, I always snap them up when they're reduced at Waitrose and store them in the freezer.

Then this week I discovered a new breed of sausage .........

So now I'm thinking more on the lines of Cassoulet, so much posher, so much more me somehow. 10 deliciously chubby little sangers mixed with sage, mixed pepper and thyme, perfect for one of my slow cooker specials.
I had a rootle in the fridge and found some 'essential' celery, mushrooms, peppers, onions, garlic, coriander leaves and some left over red wine and plum tomatoes.

Browned the sausages off, took them out of the pan then cooked the veg in the same pan, added it all to the slow cooker including the celery leaves, then slow cooked all day whilst I got on with other things.

Well pop pickers it was a taste sensation, super quality, super thrifty and best of all enough for another meal saving time and energy, 'cook once eat twice'. You could bulk it up even further with some white beans or lentils and it would easily feed 5 people.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Miss. Hope is Hysterical

Does everyone know about the wonderfully whimsical vintage sweet makers Hope and Greenwood? They have a traditional sweetie shop in South London but also sell wholesale to selected outlets.

Miss. Hope writes a laugh out loud blog, but has surpassed herself this time with this little film.

I spotted Miss. Hope with Mr. Greenwood at the recent antiques fair at Ardingly, and as she passed by I said "Hello Miss. Hope", she looked quite startled, sorry Miss. Hope I was just being friendly.

Monday, 7 May 2012

An Ode to Women

Whatever you give a woman, she will make it greater.

If you give her sperm, she'll give you a baby

If you give her a house, she'll give you a home

If you give her groceries, she'll give you a meal

If you give her a smile, she'll give you her heart

She multiplies and improves what is given her.

So if you give her any little crap, be prepared to recieve a ton of shit :)

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Open for Business

Hello everybody peeps, much excitement in the S&P household today, as I have just returned from my local high street coffee shop setting up my luscious cabinet of vintage delights. 

Yes, Shrimpton and Perfect is now open for business in Uckfield High Street, or Uckkers as we like to call it, yes, just to make it sound posher than it is :)
82-84 High Street Uckfield TN22 1PU, next the train station. The coffee is pretty damn good too.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Thrifty Tips Time

One of my fav' blog reads is by a lovely lass who bubbles over with enthusiasm for sharing all things thrifty. This week she 'vlogged' about making your own Fabreeze. It's not a product I use a lot, not too many nasty whiffs in my house thank you very much. But I do sometimes have occasion to use it :)

You can find her recipe here. I wondered if it might work as a linen spray? The idea of which I adore but not the humungous price tag. In looking for an image for this tip I stumbled on another blog with a different recipe for the same product using baking soda as an ingredient instead of distilled white vinegar. Thought I should mention her as I've nicked her image, it's the only ladylike course of action. Plus it gives you dear reader a choice of perfumed concoctions.

I don't often come up myself with original thrifty tips, but this could possibly be construed as a thrifty tip.
I like low calorie fizzy drinks with nice unusual fruity flavours, but they always seem to be a lot more than your bog standard lemonade.

So I buy my perfectly priced lemonade and keep a stash of high juice squashes, purchased when on offer of course, then I add my flavour of the day/hour and  have a variety of fizzy drinks without lots of different bottles being open and losing their fizz.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

I am a Lady ergo I read The Lady

I used to 'take' The Lady (no pun intended) on a regular basis when it was cheap, £1.00 only. But it was, well, a wee bit fusty. Fabulously old fashioned, but not enough of real interest to keep me buying it. 
But hey look at her now! Really interesting articles, just a little bit different from the mainstream magazines.
Darling little dogs in knitted outfits.
The Good Duchess, The Bad Duchess.

And the thing that sets The Lady apart from any other magazine I know, The Classifieds.

You can find yourself an exclusive holiday, or a new exciting situation maybe abroad, (it's where The Royals advertise for staff), or if you are a lady in reduced circumstances some financial help.

If you're really looking for something specific, The Lady can help with that too..........
Some dear soul is looking for a small fruit knife in a sheath for a Lady's handbag. Could this be a code and the lady in question a spy? as Nancy Mitford would have said "too thrilling".