Garden Journal

There is a lovely lot of colour in the garden at the moment with all the spring flowers in bloom. Last summer, on one of our walks, we saw some pretty poppies growing wild and we took a flower head home to save the seed. We planted the seeds in our front garden, and they have been flowering the past few weeks. Nick took these lovely photos.





Yesterday I planted the veggie garden with the tomatoes, zucchinis, lettuces and spring onions that I raised from seed. I still have a lot of planting out to do of flowers and herbs. Hopefully we won’t get any more frosts. I’ve planted the beans, saved from last summer’s crop. Nick had to erect a new bean frame, as our old one blew over and broke in the wind. There are still a few cabbages, red onions, silverbeet and spinach growing in the garden from the winter, although the silverbeet and spinach are starting to bolt and go to seed now.

These are the October pages from my garden journal.

garden journal

garden journal

Halloween Mixed-media Art Journal Page

A Visit From The Ancestors

Halloween mixed-media art journal page

This page in my art journal was made using scrapbook papers, fabrics, chalk, paper lace, and a metal embellishment.
A while ago I was given some quilt fabrics. There were several black pieces with designs of silver stars and swirls, and were perfect for including in this project.

The All Hallow’s Eve scrapbook paper is from Graphic 45’s Time to Flourish collection.

The ancestor pictures are from Kaisercraft’s Betsy’s Couture collection.

The picture of the haunted house is from The Graphics Fairy, which is a great resource for free vintage images, crafting ideas and tutorials.

I love that in my art journal I can tell a story in pictures rather than words.

Mini Pumpkin Quiches

mini pumpkin quiches

This is a great recipe for using up leftover pumpkin. The little quiches, made in muffin pans, are a good finger food for parties, with Halloween just around the corner, or, as the days are getting warmer here in New Zealand, they are nice for taking on picnics.


150 g wholemeal flour
150 g plain flour
150 g butter or dairy-free spread (I use Olivani)
cold water to mix

Sift the flours into a bowl. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add cold water a little at a time and mix until the dough forms a ball. Chill the pastry for half an hour before rolling it out.


1-2 cups cold mashed pumpkin
2 eggs
¼ cup milk or dairy-free alternative (I use oat milk)
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 teaspoon savoury yeast flakes (optional)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 spring onions, chopped

Heat the oven to 200°C.
Whisk the eggs and milk together. Whisk in the pumpkin, then add all the other ingredients and mix.
Roll out the pastry and cut into 12 rounds, using a mug or cup. Grease the muffin tins with a little oil, then place a pastry round into each hole. Divide the filling between the rounds, being careful not to overflow. Any leftover filling can be used to make extra quiches with the leftover pastry. Cook for 30 minutes.

mini pumpkin quiches2

Inside My Studio

It’s so nice to have everything organized in my studio now, so much easier to have everything in one place instead of scattered around the house. With the birds singing outside and sunshine flooding the room, it really is a pleasant place to work and play.

The Holly Hobbie quilt hangs over the front of the cabinet, hiding the boxes of craft supplies.

This chest of drawers, already full of crafting paraphernalia, was shifted from the house out to the studio.

The shelves that Nick built hold my books, journals and magazines, art projects, seeds, jars of buttons and beads, scrapbook papers, and knick knacks.

A small seating area for relaxing and for writing. The seat lifts up to provide handy storage underneath. The country style cabinets at either side came from Storage Box. They fit in the space perfectly. The baskets are made from water hyacinth and are great for keeping fabrics in.


This is my latest work in progress, a new quilt I am making for our bed. It is a simple design of patchwork squares in colours of greens and browns. I just have to finish quilting the top and then sew on the binding.

The quilt draped over the back of the chair was the first one I ever made, at a beginner’s class I went to about ten years ago.

I like to listen to the radio while I am crafting. Magic FM is my favourite radio station, which plays songs from the 60s, 70s and 80s.

When it gets too hot outside, Finn comes in and lies under the table.

The view from the French doors on this sunny spring morning.

Garden Journal

September has been a very wet month here in Hawke’s Bay, but the beginning of spring has brought plenty of growth in the garden. Daffodils and tulips have been blooming, pretty blue forget-me-nots have sprung up all over the garden, the lavender and rosemary have been abuzz with bees, and the orange and grapefruit trees are laden with fruit, although not quite ready for picking yet. I planted trays of vegetable and flower seeds in the greenhouse, and we dug compost through the garden beds, ready for planting in a few weeks’ time after danger of late frosts has passed.

garden journal

garden journal

Keepsakes Box

I often keep cardboard boxes that things have come in, thinking that they might be useful for storage. This one was a particularly nice, sturdy box.

After having it sit around for quite some time, I decided to embellish it and use it as a keepsakes box.
I decorated it with scrapbook papers, die cuts, fabric trims, buttons, and inspirational phrases.

Now I have a lovely box for my keepsakes.

keepsakes box

Book Update

Christmas in Wattle Lane, the third novel in my Wattle Lane series, is now finished and has been passed on to my lovely editor and proof reader.

In this third instalment, Neave and Lily prepare to celebrate their first Christmas in the Wattle Lane Guest House. As they make vintage-themed decorations and bake Christmas goodies, a guest arrives with a strange aversion to Christmas, while next door, at Wattle Lane Keepsakes, Angeline relives some emotional memories from her past as she makes a very special scrapbook album for her daughter.

Now it’s on to the all-important book cover. Christmas evokes so many wonderful images that it will be hard to choose one to best represent the Christmas spirit of Wattle Lane – handmade paper snowflakes, vintage ornaments, or maybe some yummy Christmas fare…