Monday, 18 July 2016

My Week in numbers...

One little dog...

Who is not so little any more.  Hector is a constant delight yet drives me to distraction on a regular basis. I've given up all hope of the garden ever looking good this year! But he does make us laugh. He found this old deflated football in the depths of our weedy undergrowth ( it's years since any of the boys have kicked a ball in the garden) and it is his most favourite thing ever!

Three birthday cakes...

There have been three birthday cakes made this week, each completely different, each of them well received and I've enjoyed making them which I guess is good news. Although I enjoy the process of baking and trying out new recipes it is the decorating that gives the most satisfaction. After all they might taste good but they need to look good too!

I didn't know the person who ordered Sarina's cake and he came all the way from Milton Keynes to get it... I was flattered but I'm sure there must be people who bake cakes in Milton Keynes!

Six machine embroidered graffiti signs.

I taught a machine embroidery graffiti class at Art Van Go on Thursday. It was the first time I had taught this class and although it was a small group it mostly seemed to go down well and there was much chatter, laughter... and rudeness if you haven't already noticed!  And some pretty fantastic results too. I say mostly, as there were actually seven people in the class but one lady wasn't so happy... she was bored stitching all day so left early! Can't please everyone I guess... although I'm not sure what she expected from a machine embroidery class. Tap dancing?

Five desserts...

Our branch of the Embroiderer's Guild had a fabulous supper party on Friday where we were treated to an inspirational talk from the costume embroiderer from Game of Thrones, Michele Carragher. I've never actually watched the TV program but the costumes are stunning. Do check out Michele's website to see her fantastic work. It was a real treat to listen to her explain about her inspiration and process. After the talk we had a buffet supper. I'd made two cheesecakes and three pavlova. There was almost a crisis with the pavlova but whipped cream came to the rescue and cemented it all together! There wasn't much of either left so I guessing what they lacked in looks they made up for in taste.

Five loaf cakes...

More baking for our Farm Shop. I had planned to make more than five loaves (I'm sure there is a joke about fishes in there somewhere if only I could think of it) but ran out of time. Just as well really as I popped in this morning and they had only sold two all weekend! It is the third week baking for them and it's all very slow. 

The week ahead is filled with more bithday cakes, more puppy playtime, more farm shop baking and more preparation for another weekend of Open Studios. Chatting to other people it seems Open Studios has been particularly quiet for everyone this year so I'm not holding out too much hope for a busy weekend. Meanwhile I'm making the most of the sunshine and washing everything in sight. Didn't factor in having to iron all the loose sofa covers in this heat though... I'm steeling myself!


  1. That's a BUSY week Gina! Your cakes are always so beautiful and I love that word is getting out -- even from far away! Cute picture of Hector too -- looks like he's keeping you on your toes! ;-D

  2. As ever, all the cakes look fab, but I am particularly drawn to the first cake - do you think it's too late for me to take up gymnastics?
    I've finished my graffiti stitching (and in case anyone wonders, I am NOT responsible for the rude one.
    Right, I've tucked my skirt in my knickers and I'm off to practice my handstands.

  3. Those cakes look absolutely wonderful.

    I had a no show on our course, well not for the course itself and then when she did turn up, no apology. Like you said, you can't please all of the people, all of the time. Glad you enjoyed the rest of the class - they're the important ones :)

  4. How rude of your embroiderer! She must have a very high opinion of herself of she couldn't see the day through, even if it wasn't what she thought ot was going to be (though goodness knows what she anticipated, as you say). Looks like your other ladies produced fantastic work, amd I am sure loved their day. Your cakes are fab, so professional. Shame the farm shop sales are so slow. Hector looks adorable. Our back garden is wrecked with Meg, our yellow lab. She has dug several impressive holes to bury things in, and also pees out there (naturally enough) so the grass grows unevenly. She is adorable though, as I am sure Hector is too X

  5. Hector is so gorgeous I'm sure you'll forgive him anything, just about. So much wonderful baking. I wish I lived near enough to buy from you , but then again, we'd both be big as barrels if I did! What a way to go though :-) I hope your Open Studios is a bit more lively this weekend. xx

  6. Fantastic, a old ball from a hedge, these are the best, flattish, smelly and delightful for a not so small puppy.
    It is a shame that you lost a student but I guess it was more fun without her moaning with boredom. Expectations are weird. I once did a pre-course expectations questionnaire and was surprised to find that half the students had not familiarised themselves with the course brief as their expectations were rather outlandish! Personally, I find it quite relaxing to do a repetitive task, it is soothing and allows for the mind to wander now and then. Your cakes, as always, are amazing! I must show these to Annie, who has started taking commissions for children's birthday cakes (she's had two, at the tender age of 12). Have a lovely week. Hopefully 'the heatwave' has arrived where your live, too. I am rather enjoying it although of course it arrived on my first day back at work! xx

  7. Gorgeous cakes as always. I love baking and experimenting but I'm not sure I would have the patience and certainly not the skill to decorate them so beautifully.

  8. You go to a machine embroidery class and don't expect to be sewing all day?? I don't know!!! Perhaps one of her class mates took inspiration from her! ;)
    Wonderful baking and gorgeous always. :)
    V x

  9. Great post Gina that made me laugh. You could maybe fit in a little tap dancing at your next class,maybe? I love the gymnast cake.

  10. I really should not read your blog before lunch because now instead of the planned salad all I want is CAKE. They all look fabulous. Love the graffiti signs and cannot comprehend some people's attitudes. As my dear old dad used to say "There's now't so queer as folk".

  11. Ahh Gina, that Hector really does love his newly discovered treasure. I am now wondering if he could be a natural born Frisbee champion.

    Oh, those cakes look sooo good. I can imagine how happy they made the folks who were being celebrated.

    Hoping the Farm Shop sales increase. I know that some of the folks who have stands at the farmers market I visit will offer samples to entice customers. Since I gather that you are not actually present at the Farm Shop, it might not be easy for you to allow sampling of your baked treats. How delicious those loaves do look!

    Your drop out embroidery student amused me...better for her to leave and take any downer atmosphere with her, I'd say. Those very cool badges are all so upbeat!

    We are still in a heat wave...yesterday afternoon's thunderstorm helped for a while to bring down the temp, but oh that humidity is still riding high.


  12. It was a very enjoyable evening at EG and the puds were delicious. As were the cupcakes - we all enjoyed them.

  13. Fantastic cakes! No wonder people are driving from far and wide for them!

  14. I've only just found this blog - and yes, I did the rude one. Couldn't resist, I'm afraid. I've been on previous workshops with the one who left; sadly she's a "downer" and it was quite a relief when she left our table. A fabulous workshop, Gina. Thank you.

    1. Welcome to my blog Patti. Good to hear from you... The photo of your work has been shown to many with much amusement!


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