another washing line


i love our town  – there is always a good washing line to be seen. now that winter is settling in I  am already planning my visits to the house next year.

the forgotten 1950’s girls

loving the photos of the forgotten 1950’s girls, shot by Ken Russell.  renowned as a controversial filmmaker,  he started out as a young photographer capturing life on the streets of london.

read all about Ken Russell on his 50s photographs of great British eccentrics – photo by Ken Russell.


slow roasted shoulder of lamb

all the kids love a sunday roast,  and now that 2 of them have left home, its a good draw to get them all home together. robert’s favourite sunday roast is slow roasted shoulder of lamb, which he slowly cooks for over 4 hours, so that the meat becomes almost caramelised on the outside, but falls off the bone.   he makes sure that the lamb is not sitting on the bottom of the baking tray, but lifts it up on a small grill,  and then adds incisions to insert rosemary and cloves of garlic to the lamb and bastes with olive oil. .   jamie oliver adds a tin of tomatoes and wine, but robert prefers not to do this, but makes his own gravy with the juices at the end.   try it, its  delicious and relatively easy dish.

maude has been so busy with school stuff, she hasnt been baking so much, but did make a lovely victoria sandwich, unusually she put the fresh cream on the top of the cake as well as in the middle.


moroccan tones

having visited morocco twice this year, i have been totally influenced by the earthy tones;  you can easily change the mood of a room by adding soft furnishings in contrasting colours – its a quick and inexpensive way to throw colour into a room. you can buy direct from moroccan artisans the – lots of the items are sourced from co operatives so you feel that you are giving something to the community.

if you feel brave, you can retile a bathroom or kitchen floor, or even add some moroccan inspired tiles to the walls – a border in the kitchen always looks good.  you can buy some lovely reclaimed tiles, including moroccan designs from bert & may.

for moroccan paint colours, try the shades old ochre and delilah’s secret , both from fired earth, etruscan red from marston and langinger,

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my favourite restaurants in london

its always difficult to get into my favourite restaurant moro – but now its great to see that you can just turn up and have a few tapas style dishes from moro in their bar next door morito.  same quality food, great different tastes and flavours (moroccan, andalucian, spanish….) – but smaller dishes – more informal and perfect if you just want a little bite to eat.  it kind of reminds me of being in new york.  i notice that if its full then they take your number and send you to the bar across the road – its usually quite quick, its not like waiting for a full dinner to finish.  fortunately you can now try out the delicious recipes from their books. 

vintage fashion fair in clerkenwell

if you love vintage clothes, then tomorrow sunday 19th October is the vintage fashion fair at the old finsbury park town hall.   i love collecting old lace – collars,  lace and voile blouses – just so pretty.

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frieze masters

i have been to frieze modern a few times, but went to frieze masters yesterday  for the first time with a friend – not only is it less than 10 minutes walk from my house, but it is a much calmer and serene atmosphere.  its astonishing that you can erect a big tent next to a kids park and fill it with works that cost thousands of pounds – only in my wildest dreams can i imagine that on my way to picking up a pint of milk i can divert to frieze masters and come home with a picasso drawing or a hepworth sculpture!   the admission to the  fair is pricey, but if you want to see up close a great selection of artworks from the last century including photos and sculptures then its worth it.   whilst i was in there, maude’s art teacher called me to ask whether she had permission to allow the girls to visit frieze modern as they had been given free tickets – what a wonderful opportunity that schools are given free tickets – i really do feel that these events should be more affordable or even offer subsidised family tickets.

i have re enrolled onto the life drawing class at the working mens college – its quite challenging having to do sketches in 5 mins, but its good practise and maybe one day………..

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