We had a lovely day on monday, running workshops for 23 exchange students from a local high school.

They have asked for copies of recipes used, these are in the “recipe” section of the blog, under Herbal Balm & Lemon & Calendula Petal Muffins. The soap recipe is in the Hair Care section. Happy brewing!

The Hastings Community Arts Centre Xmas Fair has started, this is always a great event, & a good way for us to get through the christmas spending without total panic.

Although this year I was a week out with my plans & we had to label & pack in extra quick time.  We also had a stall at the Rudolph Steiner, Taikura school in Hastings, yesterday, which was lovely. It had a really good atmosphere, & plenty of things for the kids to do. I went on a Fire Engine ride with my 2year old grandson & we were both pretty taken with the big truck. We met lots of people we hadn’t seen for ages, & even found time to sell a few  things. The fairs & markets are good fun, but a lot of work. esp. the unpacking after it’s all over.


Our garden is growing well, we’ve been eating broccoli & broadbeans every night this week, & Zucchini are about to enter our menu. I went mad & planted about 8 plants, so will need to research many recipes for using them up (Geoff’s weak spot is Eggplants & we have at least 2 dozen of those.) Our onions have been struck with a black mildew, which is alarming & disappointing. We have made up a spray using everything we could think of, including Baking Soda, Chamomile, Horsetail, & Copper. I think they are looking a bit better. I’m wondering if it’s something the Broadbeans have introduced as they look a bit spotty, we’ll pull the beans up tomorrow just to be safe. We were planning to plants leeks in the gap, but we’re re-thinking that plan.We are slowly whittling away at the weedy patches, but there never seem to be enough hours in the day at this time of year. Tomorrow’s list of jobs has some of my favourites in it, picking Elderflowers to dry & for tincture, also Wood Betony, Calendula & Honeysuckle flowers. Start a batch of Hypercal Tincture too & make Shoap. Spray onions again & cut back some of the rampant herbs which are blocking the paths. We’ve had some new birds around the place, there’s a pheasant which calls from the trees across the creek, & we had a pair of Herons perching in the old Robinias.

At this time of year we hear but don’t see the Shining Cuckoos, & I’m torn with pleasure at having them around & sympathy for the poor little Grey Warblers whose nests get invaded.