How could I forget Kevin

The tree I brought in a pot three years ago has been in a sad state for while but I think he may be making a comeback. I do hope so

Christmas Time

Clearly I need a project like 'The August break' to keep me blogging. What can I say. So nearing the end of the year and blimey it seems to be gathering pace at this point. Maybe more later on that.
After years of shift work and never really minding that we worked Christmas and/or New Year, we appear to be all...indeed.

Started Christmas Day with breakfast in the garden. 
Christmas day had a sunny start, so breakfast in the garden, then a pop into work to deliver baked mincemeat  goodies, then off for lunch. We had a great Christmas day lunch with friends, with all the right ingredients; food, bubbles, silly games, kids, food, chat, all rather good I must say.  We had loads of cards and presents and are very grateful to those posting stuff to us. I need to apologise as I was rather late this year and with a resolution to be better in 2012 I say thank you.

A snapshot of the cards

More photos to follow, as Adam took some great shots of the crowd at lunch and I haven't even got started on the decorations at work.

Smiling and thinking of you

Each time I get into the garden I have fond memories of my nan and granddad warm me. They had a great garden and maybe my pure luck in growing stuff is down to genetics - or it maybe the volcanic soil I have the privilege of gardening in, but either way it makes me happy. I wish I could spend more time in the garden and mainly it's neglected and left to fend for itself.
Gardening has made me much more aware of the seasons, this warmer weather and spurred on new growth for sure, but patience and wonder seem to be the common themes in my mind, we are getting through veg I planted for winter, however the broad beans are looking just about ready. I seemed to have failed at winter carrots, I remain determined and more seeds are in.

Broad Bean seedlings go in back in August.

Now look at them.

Red cauliflower and red cabbage seedlings.
Rather proud of these as grown from seed

The sheep pellets are an attempt to deter the cats

More cauliflower in this bed, along with some onions (protected by the bottles)

Time to pick

This is so impressive, all from seed. Genetics or soil, or maybe both

These look so fab, and so organised, I don't normally manage to plant in rows.
I seem to have almost mastered the 'give the plants enough room' trick

Planted back in August lettuce and radish, now a mental concoction of salad stuff.

As the strawberries didn't do brilliantly in the baskets I thought I'd go flowers this year

Another basket, but this has no plan, I just chucked in random seeds loose at the bottom of my seed box!

Herb patch in an odd spot of the garden is going well. The borage is actually growing though a crack in the driveway. There is also a jasmine plant in there which has flowered for the first time and smells so wonderful.

The front patch of flowers has burst into summer madness, rather pleased about the foxgloves

Love them

The latest seedlings in. Sunflowers.
Will wait a little before I plant them out and hopefully the wind will ease up a bit

Sculpture in the Gardens

A brief interlude to the always wonderful Auckland Botanic Gardens, the sculpture trail is on till February 12th. Do seem to be loving the iPhone and the photo apps that make my pics a little bit tastier.

Part of the 'Garden Elementals' a collaboration of 14 artists

Exotic Blooms by Bev Goodwin

Splayed by Regan Gentry
101 glavnised shovels!

'Big Man' by Lucy Bucknall

Daisy Blanket by Mia Hamilton

Detail of 'Gateway' by Chris Moore

'When gorse ceases flowering' by Jeff Thomson

No, not sculpture, rather groovy in the kids garden

Now just loving the path in the herb garden

Hurrah I'm 40 at last

Will have trouble putting into words the totally amazing, wonderful and truly fantastic time I had turning 40. This photo will have to do for starters.
Kings Canyon walk, originally uploaded by KTandCoffee.

A belated number 9

Oh dear, put this one on the list of '39 Things'. But heh ho, all done. Have new glasses, will be able to see those numbers at work and page the right doctor! Turns out my eyesight hasn't got a lot worse - based on the prescription sunglasses I still had - now there's an idea I should have just worn to those to work. Anyway digressing in my mind and my typing. I have new glasses, my eyesight still isn't too bad.  Apparently my eyes (the technical bit of  them anyway) are different shapes - one is rugby ball shaped and one is soccer ball shaped and this is why I can't judge distance or park a car - hurrah and reason and now I'll just celebrate this and enjoy my bad parking. Choosing the glasses was very interesting, alone in a shop without the ability to decide or any confidence in what might actually look good on me. To the rescue - a box with the three I had narrowed it down to take away. So the next few days at work I gathered various opinions, over my choices, face shape, colour, some opinions bordering on personality descriptions, all in all, it helped, and I would't have chosen the winning pair, but I'm very happy.
So a week to go till the birthday I better take another look at those lists (things and things) and maybe just carry them over.

These boots

These boots, originally uploaded by Adam Drake Foto.

Boots make me think of friends, crazy but true and one of those conversations to have over wine or coffee I guess. Plus some of these friends have been reminding me lately how important each and every day is. To cherish, to smile and to love.

Roxburgh Rhubarb Cake

A new cookbook (yes, I know) means another rhubarb recipe. My prolific rhubarb needs regular eating and inventive ways to be used. This cake I have to say, is one of the best so far. Oh the cookbook is amazing, certainly not for a vegetarian, but it is rather great.

August Break 2011

August Break 2011, originally uploaded by KTandCoffee.

August has come and gone but I really enjoyed the August Break project I stumbled upon. This mosaic celebrates those taking part in the project. It is put together with a sad heart following some tragic news, my thoughts and love with those I cherish and miss.

Number 28

Well, more vague numerical titles for my blog. Well the August Break project certainly resparked my interest in my blog if no-one else's! A thought occurred, what about those 40 things. My 40th birthday is looming fast so here on the eve on the Rugby World Cup I can acknowledge that number 28 is a certainty. When I wrote my list back in October, I added number 28 with scorn and a smirk, oh no, for sure. RWC fever is contagious and fantastic. Auckland is alive with anticipation, seriously, everyone is talking about it. I'm actually sorry I don't have tickets and may still try and get one and at the very least will be watching the All Blacks vs France game in a lively pub like setting.

My RWC whiteboard 
I have (of course), taken charge of the ward decorations - as a colleague put it - "you do like a project." The flags positioning was a two (wo)man effort and was met with great praise, then I managed to find some bunting to finish the task. My proudest moment however is the 'RWC whiteboard', I love the logistics, I love the planning. I am a crazy control freak. The latest achievement has been the lucky dip sweepstake - I am a bookmakers daughter. Again, a proud moment of planning, actually some maths and spelling involved, but I had help on that front (thank you Vicky, Lynne, Jo and Pauline).  I can name all 20 teams involved and probably draw their flags to be honest!

The defining moment came, when, at Jo's insistence I took the first draw in the lucky dip sweepstake, I pulled out.........New Zealand, how bloody cool.


Loosing internet connection at home kind of put a stop to the August Break for a while for me. I carried on with the photos though, so have a selection from the last 6 days to end the month.
26th, at home, after work

27th, walk in the park before the night shift

29th, at the zoo with Poppy

29th, Adam enjoying his day at the zoo as much as Poppy

29th, another food stop. We snacked our way around the zoo!

29th, Poppy at the zoo

29th, Auckland Zoo

29th, at the zoo. 

29th, in the meerkat tunnels

29th, at the zoo

31st, at work. I walk to level 9 from level 3, just beacuse


Twenty-fifth, originally uploaded by KTandCoffee.
I so wanted to get a photo of Adele and her cake, but I thrust it into her hand, we sang and then I carried on with the ward round. When I returned to the office this was all that was left. I had however been saved a piece just for me.


Those jobs I ignored here, did get done to some extent, but the best bit of the day was making a cake for tomorrows morning tea, a belated birthday cake for the lovely Adele. Thank you Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook.

Sugar, butter and poppyseeds in the mixer. Flour, baking powder and salt in the bowl

Milk mixing in with sugar and butter mixture. Eggs being separated

Full on action, egg whites being mixed

Egg whites being folded into cake mixture

Coming together 

And into the tin

Glaze on the pan

A few more minutes

Glazed cake cooling

Cooling and waiting for icing.........until tomorrow then


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