Monday, 24 November 2014

The Toadstool Holiday & The Gifts of Imperfection

haven't the days of November flown by!
Our little toad-stools have been seconded by fairy folk
 & been for a little holiday down the road. Frog isn't best pleased but I'm sure he'll recover shortly.
 Last Sunday was the annual Taikura (Rudolph Steiner) school fete.
I am so glad that it's just down the road; an easy little stroll from our house.
This is one of my favourite stalls...decorate your own floral crown.
 It must be so nice for the children to use their little tickets to buy fresh & delicious treats all by themselves.
 It's not often that you see true beauty at a school fair...
 It's a big job to put it all together & the parents are required to contribute quite a great deal.
Aren't these adorable...
 a basket full of cats & a row of expectant dogs.
 The Ice Queen was tucked away in her hideaway in the shade of of rhododendrons.
 And the Fairy Queen was over this way...
 She didn't mind an adult popping in.
 Calm rides on white horses along winding trails.
 A clown or two doing the rounds. The sign on his rear end says "Kick yourself".
 Would you like to come to a puppet show?
 Or have a little kiss from an angel?
These wee double rhodohypoxis (what kind of a flower name is that!!) are called Angel Kisses.
 Do you know about Motherwort?
It's a wonderful herb, also known as Leonurus Cardiaca...lionhearted one!
I found some very useful information just here.
And more over here at The Polishing Stone:

"Motherwort provides strength and comfort. The word itself derives from the Old English words meaning "mother's plant." Another name for motherwort is heartwort. This and its species name, cardiaca, speak to motherwort's usefulness as a gentle tonic that strengthens the heart. So next time you sense your heart sinking and feel you can't possibly make it through the days or weeks ahead, reach for motherwort. I certainly plan to do just that."

This is just the right stage to harvest the herb.
 So on a nice sunny afternoon this week I picked my Motherwort & snipped it with kitchen scissors fairly finely, then to one jar I added organic cider vinegar & to the other vodka. It should be 100% proof but I don't have any that strong so I used what was in my cupboard. Now I have put them in a cool dark place to sit for 6 weeks.
 My little garden angel lost all of her paint (somehow!) so I have given her a little reviving coat of pink. Isn't she sweet....did you catch her kiss?
 I think that she's been secretly painting the pansies in the night.
 This true geranium called Rosanne is the prettiest shade of blue. There are holes in her petals where "someone" had a nibble, but such is life...holes & nibbly bits, bugs & annoyances;
 rust & paint that falls off.
 In the end everything ages & wears & starts to smell a bit funny...
 I have always wanted to paint an old suitcase & this one was either going out to to the op shop or having a revamp & since the outside was the vilest shade of bland brown I decided that I would paint it pink! Well ok, the first coat was white...
 but the next ones were pink. Much better. Now it can stay.
 I found an enticing little recipe recently for making an apple spice mix with fresh spices. I made a batch using almost all whole spices....oh wow, what a wonderful smell!!
 I grated & ground them in my dear little old coffee grinder.
 The only thing that I added already powdered was the ginger.
I have been cooking apple for our breakfast, adding a few sultanas & a spoonful of this heady mix...divine, especially with creamy yoghurt or kefir!
I found the inspiration just here.
The quantities go like this:
4 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
 We are all packed up & off to the Waikato for a few days tomorrow morning. We're so looking forward to seeing David. He's been working here at Zealong for a few months now & loving it. He is the only caucasian amidst the Cambodians & Taiwanese workers, luckily his Chinese is very good now & the Taiwanese coming along well. Zealong is New Zealand's only (organic) tea farm. November is a busy month & the first harvest of the season.
David says that he hopes to visit this beautiful tea plantation in Taiwan next year.
Are you a tea drinker?
This is surely true...tea can be such a comforting friendly drink.
Shall I put the kettle on?
Thanks so much for your visit.
I'll catch up when we return.
Have a lovely week.
Much love Catherine x0x0x


  1. Hello there Catherine, what a beautiful post today ... so much loveliness. I think that little Fair or fete looks just wonderful, so many lovely stalls ... lots of lovely old fashioned stalls too :-) Yes it does look like your pink angel has been secretly painting the pansies .. mine have sucumbed to mildew by now. I did not know about Motherwort but it sounds amazing. I think if your little pink suitcase goes missing ... it may well be hiding at my house !!!!! Its just gorgeous., Have a safe & happy trip to see David dear friend. Look forward to catching up soon, x0x0x0

  2. I love the Rudolf Steiner fair. I missed it this year here in chch though. Love the toadstools and what a delight to make a floral crown. the doggies are cute to and these pansies are gorgeous. I enjoyed your post

  3. How beautiful the tea plantation looks - I would like to visit it - I once visited one in Sri Lanka - the people worked very hard to pick the leaves.

  4. Your photos exude sunshine! What a lovely festival! Beautiful!


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