maandag 29 november 2010

snowflakes and crystals

As the days are getting shorter and colder, I thought it was high time to make my house look a bit warmer and more festive.

I found some branches outside in the park, which I sprayed silver, and decorated them with crystals and wooden snowflakes. I adjusted the fairly lights to the big living room mirror, and arranged all sorts of white, glass and silver lights on a Moroccan tray, to put on our dining room table. Some tiny white angels flew into the wreath over the fireplace ;-).

The rest of the decorating has to wait until after 'Sinterklaas', which we celebrate on the 5th of December.  This year we will go to Amsterdam and celebrate 'Sinterklaas' with my husbands family. My daughters are very busy, working on their poems and their surprise gifts, for someone in the family. Our living room is a mess. Full of cardboard boxes, tape, paint and different kinds of packaging material. Last year my daughter made Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb for her younger sister. He was very popular, not only with the little ones but the grown ups as well. You can see Perry on the last picture.

I will probably not be posting anymore before Sinterklaas, so I wish all my Dutch readers 'een hele gezellige Sinterklaas avond' and my international readers a happy new week!

Lieve groet, Madelief

woensdag 24 november 2010

End of season

Today's pictures will probably be the last before the snow falls. When we visited our allotment garden last week it was full of leaves. My husband and I cleared away as much as we could and left a few piles for the hedgehogs to spend the winter in. I tied up the climbing roses, did some late pruning and cut the last Cosmea's to take home. We piled up the chairs under the veranda and stored our table in a dry place.

There is still a lot to do before spring arrives. One of the most important tasks is pruning the trees. For now we will be spending more time at home, baking cookies, making chutney's and relishes and browsing through cooking books in search of tasty Christmas recipes. 

Last week I made an Apple Blueberry cobbler. I added a bit of vanilla icecream on the plate. The smell, the combination of hot and cold, and the taste were heavenly! I can recommend it to you.

Have a great wednesday!

Apple blueberry cobbler

1250 gr cooking apples (peeled, cored and stoned)
juice of 1 lemon
100 gr golden caster sugar
150 gr blueberries (or more if you like)

For the cobbler:
100 gr selfraising flour
1 tbs cinnamon
50 gr butter, cut into small pieces
50 gr golden caster sugar
1 egg, beaten
4 tbsp milk

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celcius. Butter a 1.5 litre ovenproof pie dish. Put the apples in a pan with the lemon juice, sugar and 1 tablespoon water. Bring to the boil, then cover and cook gently for 5 minutes. Add the blueberries and cook for another 5 minutes. Turn the fruit into the dish.

Put the flour and the cinnamon in a bowl, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips. Stir in the sugar. Add the egg and milk an mix lightly to a soft batter (this can be done in a food processor).

Drop tablespoonfuls of the batter over the fruit, leaving gaps where the fruit peers through. Scatter over the nuts. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the topping is crisp and brown. Serve straight away.

zondag 21 november 2010

Classy and fabulous

According to Coco Chanel a girl should be two things: 'classy and fabulous'. That's exactly what I try to be :-). I am one of those women who enjoys wearing clothes. They make me feel better, help me to feel more secure and make me stand out in a crowd, if necessary. Most of the time I am overdressed, but that's the way I like it.

This doesn't mean that I buy expensive clothes, quite the contrary. I am always on the lookout for bargains. You can find me in the store when there is a sale, but I enjoy buying through the internet or in vintage shops as well.  I know exactly what I want. It never takes me long to see if there is anything in the store that captures my attention. In wintertime I love wearing black, grey and pastels. In summer it's mostly pastels and florals. My clothes have to be a bit old fashioned, but with a modern touch. I prefer skirts and dresses over trousers.

On the photo's I posted today, you can see some of the things I found recently. I took the short black boots with me from Gent. The grey leather shoes came from Ebay and the floral carpet bag from a Dutch vintage store. The skirt with the black lace was purchased in Paris at a bargain price, together with the black ribbon necklace with tiny pearls. The pink scarf and baret came from the Hema and the pink necklace from an outlet store. To make the picture complete, you can see my new glasses attached to the handbag that I use for work on the last photo! What I would love to know is: what do you wear?

Oh.....I almost forgot 'Rozmeen' from the blog Pastels and White  is the winner of my small giveaway. Dear Rozmeen, the Jeanne d'Arc Christmas book is yours! Will you please mail me your address, so that I can send it your way?!

Bela, Leslie & Nensa, I am having difficulties with my computer and cannot open your blogs and leave a comment. I am so sorry, but I don't know what to do about it. I will keep on trying!

Enjoy your new week, Lieve groet, Madelief

donderdag 18 november 2010


What is the best thing to do, when you go on holiday to England with two teenagers, and would love to make some country walks and visit quaint looking villages? What we did was find one of the locations where the movie Stardust was filmed. One of my daughters favourite movies.

A few of the scenes were filmed at the Wilthsire village of Castle Combe. The scene that my youngest daugther wanted to find the location of, was the scene in which Sienna Miller is standing upstairs in her bedroom with the windows open, talking to a young man in the street. After a long walk though the beautiful village and surrounding countryside we finally found the house! You can see it on the last picture. We had one happy girl and and a pair of happy parents :-)!

Before leaving the village, we drank tea in a lovely teashop. The teashop came straight out of Country Living! I couldn't keep my eyes of the beautiful old dresser. The very kind lady not only showed us her garden, but also told my daughter about the new Steven Spielberg movie 'War Horse', which is shot in the village as well and will be out soon. You will probably understand that when the movie is out, we will be on the lookout for familiar places!

Enjoy you evening!

Lieve groet, Madelief

woensdag 10 november 2010

A small giveaway!

This post is an excuse for being toooo busy, making not enough photographs and laying on the couch in the evening with a good book! The photo's are not my own, but they captured my imagination. How I would love to hold a party in my garden one day with Moroccan lanterns hanging on the branches of the trees or those big white lights. The table will be set with white china and in between the plates, the silver cutlery, napkins of white lace and crystal glasses, little jars of white flowers will be placed. Thinking about it brings a big smile to my face, especially on such a dark and dreary day as today! 

With this post I would like to thank you all, for your sweet comments and the ideas you gave me of how to use my fireplace. Thank you a hundred times!!! I have decided to go on the lookout for a suitable firescreen.

It's the Christmas paperpack edition of the Jeanne d'Arc book that I would like to give to one of you, as a 'thank you'. I bought it for myself a short while ago, but have already finished it. I have soaked up enough inspiration to get me through Christmas. I would love to share it with one of you. If you are interested, please leave a comment saying so. It's for followers only, Dutch or international. The closing date is November 20th. One of my daughters will pick the winning number. Please join in!!

Wishing you all a happy wednesday!

Lieve groet, Madelief

 Photo 1 to 10 Style me Pretty, photo 11 JDL Magazine