25 January 2014

Grow Your Blog Party & Give Away

 I saw this button on a  blog   "Grow Your Blog" party!"    and thought it would be fun. it's a blog by  Vicki

 If this is the  first time you have visited  Me    I hope you'll enjoy what you see. I'm an English lady,  living in rural France, and my blog is about my daily life, my garden and the wild life I see. I can take you on lots of walks near to my home, and share with you the things that make me love where I live. Some times I share a special recipe . 

I do some crafting,  less than I used to.
I've always loved making things, ever since I was at school
 my favourite class was  what they called 'Needlework ' way back then.
My school reports had remarks something like this
'' If Barbara gave as much time to Maths 
as she does to her 'Needlework' she will go far''
Reading my grandsons reports, I don't think teachers have changed much, 
when summing up a pupil.

My lane which I take everyday for a walk.

I only started watercolour painting a few years ago,  when I feel brave enough to share something I've sketched or painted, I'll slip them into a post.

My painting corner 

 I love challenges.
Oh I forgot to tell you, I'm learning how to use Mr France's camera.
Mr. France is my husband, so he'll be popping into a few of the things I share with my followers.

We love to share a good bottle of wine.

If you'd like a peep at some of the things I share 
Make yourself a coffee or a nice cup of tea in your favourite cup.
enjoy a few photos I've taken.

A few flowers to make you think of spring .

This is my potting bench, I spend a lot of time here.

 If you're looking  for  places to visit in Paris and see  lots of photos of the Eiffel Tower I'm not for you.
I'll let you into a secret, I've only ever stayed in Paris once 
and that was only a long weekend.

However if you love the country life

 with some extras thrown in
go to my sidebar and click on follower.
  I hope you'll like what you see.
I'll be waiting for you.

                    Thanks for visiting, and thank you to Vicki at 2 Bags Full, our host.

I will be having my first Give Away  as a thank you
The give away is open to any one that comments on this blog post. 
this will be announced on the 15th February 
This is my first party link up
So look out for your name it might be you
Not sure yet what it will be, but it will something French.
à bientôt
Barbara Lilian

24 January 2014

A little bit of this and some of that.

What do you do when it's raining ?

 I'm indisposed as they say !
even if it wasn't raining,
I would only be doing armchair activities.

A good time to get the camera and paints out,
but half way through the day, I felt tired due to the strong pain killers I'm taking.
Which means I will only be showing the shots I took of my indoor gardening. 
Hopefully the paintings will get done when I feel in the mood.
Back in November I bought several packets of dwarf daffodils,
 for the new area we started near the deck.
and thought it would be fun to plant some in unusual containers,
 and grow them on a sunny window ledge.

They took awhile to sprout , but are now shooting up, some more than others.
I thought I'd take a few photo shots, to test my improvement
 playing with Mr France's camera..

This is a vintage cup I've had for a long time and never used for tea,
so thought I'd put it to good use.
I planted these dwarf daffodils at the same time I planted the Paper whites.
which have been and gone.
The daffodils indoors are all growing at different paces .

This is a square glass container I use for  displaying  lots of different things.
It was full of dried Lavender and dried rose buds before I planted the daffodils.

 I like this simple shot.

I use Picasa  for the photos I post on my blog.
Usually for creating a collage.
Look what I did with the above photo. 

Today I tried clicking on a few other things to see what else I could do.
 and found several things like this sketching method. which I'll  certainly be trying in the future.

maybe for a watercolour of the cup and saucer

I collect things I like, not because they have a certain name.

But for all of you who collect pottery
this cup has a group of pretty little flowers on the inside of the cup
and the name underneath is
Soliam ware
made by 
Simpsons Pottery Ltd.
 Cobridge .England
The saucer is one of a few pieces I still have from a full tea-set.
which I had a long, long time ago.
Made by Johnson Brothers .England.

I hope you liked seeing what I did with my cup & Saucer. 

When they're in bloom I'll show you what they look like.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian.

19 January 2014

Sleeping garden.

Although our winter has been mild we've had a lot of rain.
My garden is still sleeping.

this is what we have to look forward to later in the summer.

How often do we not look up and take time to see the beauty of nature.

The sky was blue and the sun was shining

I took time this morning,
there right near to my house was this holly tree, still with plenty of berries.
 These have usually all gone by now.

Though we always make sure our bird feeders are kept full.

Coal tit
A few weeks ago I mentioned I was going to join a photography blog.
Well after reading what my first task was to be I realised it was not for me.
So Mr France has been giving me a few tips, 
and I took  these photos of the birds with his camera ,

I've been using some different menus
and I know I have a lot to learn 
but I feel I have improved.
What do you think ?


Blue tit

I'm not able to do anything strenuous in the garden at the moment,
so as the sun was shining I sat in our sheltered spot 
& Mr France brought me coffee.

We sat at our little round café table
and watched the birds flying from feeder to feeder.
It won't be long before we hear them singing 
and see them starting to build their nests.

I hope you take time to look around
 and see what nature brings where ever you are.

à bientôt

Barbara Lilian

18 January 2014

A Danish recipe for you

It was one of those days when I didn't know what to cook for dinner, 
I was wandering around my local supermarket,
all the essentials were ticked off  my shopping list and were in the basket,
 at the bottom was written something for dinner,
 I always put that when I need an inspiration.
Then I saw the sign promotion.  I went over to have a peep at the counter
and minced pork was on offer. 
So immediately I knew what we were going to have for dinner today.


These are a Danish speciality and we love them.
a bit like the Swedish meat balls. which are served in a fresh tomato sauce.

I first tasted these at our daughter in laws family home in Denmark.
I loved them, and would have loved to ask for the recipe, 
but thought they might think it rude if I asked.

I'm sure you all have your own way of making meat balls
but  thought you might like to try my daughter in laws recipe
It's  tasty and quick and easy.

It's not often I make a post giving a recipe.
So don't expect step by step instructions like Daphne
we became friends when we both started our blogs nearly 2 yrs. ago.
She shares her tasty recipes weekly and I know there will be something there that you will enjoy.
Tell her I sent you, Daphne will love it if you pop in for a chat.

Now for Ingredients to make 
Danish Frikadeller

Makes 14/16
depending on the size you make them.

500 gr. minced pork.
1 onion finely chopped
1 beaten egg
approx.100 ml. milk
3 or 4 slices of bread
2 tablespoons of flour
1 teaspoon mustard 
1 teaspoon oregano
a little salt 
& lots of  freshly ground pepper.
Oil and butter to cook


Put the minced pork in a large mixing bowl 

In a separate bowl  beat the egg, mustard and  milk together
and add the bread, leave to soak until the bread has soaked up the liquid.
If you have a chopping mixer use this to chop the onion finely, then add to the soaked bread
Tip this into the bowl with the minced pork.
Add the oregano ( if you don't have this herb use any of your own favourite herbs.)
then season with salt  pepper.
Finally add the flour.and mix well.
You might think the mixture is a bit sloppy, don't worry ! I put mine in the fridge for a little while.
Then using two large spoons make oval shapes, place onto a floured plate,
roll the meat in a little of the flour, when you've used all the mixture
heat a little oil & butter in a large frying pan on a medium heat,
fry the Frikadeller in batches. for 5 to 6 mins  then gently turn them over
to cook the other side, they don't take long to cook,
so keep your eye on them.They should be cooked in about 10/12 mins. Don't overcook.

This is what they look like after 5/6 mins.

keep you eye on them as they soon need to be turned, 

Take out of the pan and place on absorbent kitchen paper.
 put them in a med. heated oven to keep warm,
till they are all cooked and you are ready to serve.

 Serve them hot with your own favourite accompaniment..
I serve mine with creamy mashed potatoes.

Bon appétit

In the summer they are also great served cold with potato salad  & a crisp green salad.

I would love to know if you try this recipe and what you served it with

also if you like them as much as I do.

à bientôt

Barbara Lilian

08 January 2014

It suddenly felt like spring today.

My potting bench.

I know a lot of my followers are fighting their way through deep snow,
but so far our weather has been very mild this winter but wet.
Today we actually had blue sky and sunshine,
which is why I felt it was like spring.

I thought I'd do a bit of tidying up, doing things I'd left for another day.
That other day has been a long time coming due to sever back and leg pain
which I now find is Arthritis.

In late October and early November I planted a lot of new bulbs
along with the ones from last year which had been stored in the shed. 
I  thought they had all been planted, 
well look what I found, tulip bulbs which had started to sprout

I'm not able to do serious digging yet, so when I saw this trough with a lonely Pansy in bloom
from last spring, I decided to shove the tulip bulbs into the trough.
and hope they'll grow.

There were still plenty of bulbs left, so they were pushed into this green container.

When I plant things in the garden I usually push a stick in the ground
as I get a bit forgetful these days, it reminds me that I've planted something there.

I thought this pot needed something a little more decorative than a stick or cane.
so I chose my little garden whimsies.

I know spring is a long way off yet.
and I'm sure we'll have  lots more sunny days 
but while I wait for these tulips to sprout a bloom,
these little figures make the flowerless pot look a bit more cheerful.

I hope my sunshine day was able to bring a little sunshine into your day 
what ever type of weather you are having.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian