A Good Friday at Polesden Lacey

It’s hot cross bun day!! So what better thing to do then have some for breakfast, and then go out for the day as a family. Once we were all ready we drove to Polesden Lacey to have a wander about. It’s a National Trust place and we’ve not visited it for a couple of years, so it was good to go back. It was very busy, which we expected, and the first hurdle once we’d parked was to figure out the new parking machines. Now before, what you would do is, as long as you had your sticker on your car window then you didn’t have to visit the machines. Easy, simple, no hassle what so ever. Now, you have to get a ticket from the machine. It’s still free as long as you have your membership card. But oh dear lordy, lordy, it’s so fiddly. First you have to press “Any key”. Now we couldn’t see a key named “Any”, so we just pressed a key. Then you have to push the button to say you’re a visitor, then scan your card, and then finally a ticket is printed for you which you have to go and put on your dash board. What a palaver!! There are 2 machines and both had queues. Look National Trust, I love visiting your places very much, but there is a saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!”

We finally got in to Polesden Lacey, and off we went to explore. There were lots of kids running round doing some kind of easter egg hunt, but we wandered off, without a map, to find somewhere quiet to have out picnic lunch. Polesden Lacey is lovely. There are plenty of things to explore. On our travels we saw a beautiful rock garden with paths meandering through it. George being George had to follow the paths.

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You know in a previous life I think George was a dog. The reason for this is because he has to go for a good run at least twice a day, and where ever we go he always has to find a stick. There were other things discussed but I’m not going to talk about those here.

We sat down and had our lunch and looked at the views around us, which are so beautiful and calming. After lunch we continued on our exploring venture and found the vegetable garden, all of which looks very bare because it’s the beginning of the season. I’ll have to go back  again in July/August time to see it in full growth. We found the chickens that looked very happy in their large run. It’s surrounded by an electric fence, and George wondered if he would get a shock from the fence if he touched it with his wooden stick. How that boys manages to get through a day at school without injuring himself I’ll never know. Although I do sometimes get calls from his school, which I dread. Last time, about 2 months ago, he broke his finger during a PE lesson. I dread seeing his schools name come up on my phone.

After walking round for a little bit longer, we ended our day out going to the cafe to get the kids and ice cream and Mark and I had a hot drink each. Then it was time to come home. It was lovely for Mark to be able to come with us today. Usually he’s at work and the kids and I have all the fun, so today he was able to come and enjoy it with us.

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Happy Easter everyone, enjoy your hot cross buns today, and your chocolate easter eggs on Sunday, and spending this long weekend with friends and family.

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Friday 31st March 2017 – The end of an era.

This is a little bit sad, but I need to share it with you. Today was my last official day on my allotment plots. After 11 years I am leaving because we are moving house very soon. Don’t panic I will return, but it may be a couple of months before you see me again. We are moving a distance away from where we live at the moment, but in our new place we will have a much larger garden, and Mark and the kids have told me that I can do what ever I like with it. I love them all so very much. They clearly know how much gardening means to me. Let mum garden, it keeps her calm!

So for one last time from my allotment plots in Surrey here goes. Thank you for watching and commenting you really have made it more fun than I could ever have imagined it to be. I would also like to thank everyone on the allotment site. I have made so many wonderful friends and we have swapped so many stories and information, I will miss you all very much indeed.

Next time I see you, I’ll be in my new garden, and I’m hoping that you will join me there, not actually in the garden itself, but via the magic of You Tube!!

TTFN!

Subscribe to my HERE for my FREE newsletter and I also how ebooks available, so if you would like to know how to grow Potatoes or Onions I can help.

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Roasted onions with pancetta & parmesan

Have you ever wanted to grow your own onions? Well why not buy my latest ebook: Claire’s Allotment Essentials Onions. It’ll tell you everything you need to know and includes a wonderful recipe at the back. It’s only 99p!! I also have an ebook on Potatoes again with a wonderful recipe in as well.

Here is an amazing onion recipe for you to try.

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Tuesday 7th March 2017 – Let’s lance that broccoli!

A glorious day today, so where better to spend the morning than up the allotment. Lots more sorting out again today, it’s surprising what you accumulate over 11 years! This time I broke down the large compost heap I have, and spread the contents out in some neighbouring beds. The outside of the compost heap was made from old wooden pallets, but over the years the bottoms have rotted away. So when I pulled them up the bottom of the pallet stayed on the ground. I loaded more stuff into the car, all wood this time, and took that off to the recycling centre. I also harvested some more of my sprouting broccoli “Lancer Mixed”. Here’s how I did it, it’s very easy…

We’ll have that with dinner tonight and I’ll sauté it like I did before. Here’s how I cooked it, just incase you missed it before….

As the weather is very slowly warming up I also noticed that my rhubarb is starting to come through, which means that spring is nearly here.

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So another busy morning. I won’t be able to get back down to the allotment until Friday as I’m working the next couple of days. Still it’s not going anywhere. Let’s hope the weather stays fine.

Don’t forget to sign up to my newsletter, click HERE  Then you’ll be kept up to date with my latest ebooks. The next one is due out very soon and it’s all about Onions!!

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Red Onion & Potato Rosti

Are you fed up with cooking your potatoes the same old way? Then why not try making a potato rosti instead. It sounds complicated, but really it’s very easy. Follow my easy to follow instructions and people will think that you’ve spent hours making something so wonderful and tasty.

If you want to know more about this recipe and how to grow your own potatoes at home, then please click HERE  to download my ebook.

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A different way to cook your greens!

Most of the time we boil our vegetables, but I also roast them and this brings out their natural sugars. I have roasted broccoli before, but today I decided to try something different and sautéed some Lancer Mixed Sprouting Broccoli with some onions and garlic. Give it a try, it’s delicious!

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Tuesday 28th February 2017 – A little surprise!

I don’t know about you, but I like little surprises. So when I arrived on my plot this morning I was greeted with a couple of wonderful surprises. I’m still having a good sort out of both my plots, with lots of trips to the tip with stuff. Last spring I sowed some cauliflowers “Romanesco” which grew beautifully, but didn’t seem to produce any cauliflowers at all last summer. So therefore I’d given up and was prepared for them not to do anything and I would give the plants to the chickens as a treat. Now I’ve not been up to the allotment for a couple of weeks, but today when I went up, there in front of me as bold as brass were several wonderful cauliflower heads. I’m not sure why they’ve suddenly decided to arrive now, but I suppose, better late than never.IMG_3783.JPG

Then also as I was looking around I saw some of my Broccoli “Lancer mixed” that is also ready to harvest. Now this I expect to be ready about this time. Actually I was expecting it to be ready about January, but still I’m very pleased to finally see it. I harvested a load and there is more on it’s way. So hopefully we’ll have  plenty to keep us going for a while.FullSizeRender.jpgFullSizeRender-1.jpg

Now I know that many of you have been asking when I’m going to start this years videos again. We’ll to be honest I’m not sure. Don’t panic there will be more this year, but I’m just not sure exactly when. You see we’re in the process of moving house at the moment, and are relocating a distance away from where we live at the moment. This is why I’m having a good sort out of the allotment plots. We’re not staying in the same area so therefore I won’t be able to keep my allotment, but our new home has a lovely sized garden and therefore I’ll have my allotment plot in there instead. Once we arrive I’ll show you around, and you can join me in my journey turning what is, at the moment a load of grass into a wonderful allotment plot. When the time comes, I will do a goodbye video from my allotment here, so like me you can all say “Goodbye” to it. It’ll be sad after all these years, but then you can all join me in saying “Hello” to my new space. I’ll keep you posted, so don’t worry. I’ll still keep blogging when I go down the allotment and making the odd video about cooking my vegetables, but hopefully very soon I can start sowing some seeds for this year.

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