Rain and berry picking

This morning, while the skies looked a little dubious it was still (just about) dry, so Handsome, Cheeky and I went out for a walk to look for blackberries. We were very successful, and I was delighted to come home with a goodly sized amount – I’m hoping for a cood couple of jars of jam out of this little lot! Later on today then, Cheeky and I went out to the trees at the front of our house, where I noticed yesterday that a lot of the elderberries are ripening. We managed to pick quite a lot which are already ripe, whilst leaving loads which are still green or pinky purple rather than black. So lots to look forward to in a couple of weeks!

I plan to make the obligatory jam with these berries, with the addition of apples for the setting properties, but now I’m thinking that I really should make something else with the blackberries too. Maybe a pie. Mmmm, blackberry and apple pie! I’m going to have to give this some serious thought!

In other news, we went to Clarks in order to buy the kids some school shoes, and I’m now £66 poorer. I can’t remember the last time I spent £33 on a pair of shoes for myself! I did look at the Mothercare own-brand shoes, but they didn’t have Handsome’s size, and while the ones I found did seem to fit Cheeky, they both have very wide feet and so my imagination went into overdrive, thinking of the permanent harm I could do to their growing feet for the sake of the extra £17 I might save by not buying Cheeky the more expensive shoes. So I gave in. Luckily (for me), GG’s Uncle very kindly paid for one of the pairs, so I can pretend (in my head) that the shoes really only cost £16 a pair now. Oh, the little deceptions we play on ourselves! Today really was an expensive day for us, as I also filled the petrol tank in our car, which was another £40. We plan on trying to limit ourselves to £10 per week on petrol this month, in an effort to see whether it is possible to just fill the tank once a month. It would make it much easier to budget for the petrol if we could fill it up on payday for it to last the whole month. We don’t do many journeys longer than the twelve mile round trip to my mother-in-law’s house, so I’m really hoping it’s possible.

I really feel like baking something, so I think I’ll head into the kitchen now and see what I can rustle up. Oh, and remember you only have a day and a quarter left to enter my giveaway! So far, I really have had entries from right round the world, which is making it really exciting for me!


5 Responses

  1. Mmm, blackberries. My hubby is brewing some blackberry wine at the moment and I can’t wait to sample some. I’ve got him lined up for some elderberry wine afterwards (although he seems quite taken with a recipe that involves both elderberry and runner beans…… not two things you’d naturally think would go together!)
    If you want something else to do with blackberries, I can recommend blackberry gin – made like sloe gin only use blackberries instead of sloes. I made it one year when I couldn’t find any sloes and now much prefer it. The only down side is that you are supposed to wait for at least a year before cracking it open…

  2. With sloe/blackberry gin, (I’ve never made it) do you just add the blackberries to the gin and leave it to stew? I made some fruity liqueurs last year doing that – citrus whisky, raspberry vodka and mixed berry gin – but I wasn’t drinking at the time and didn’t get to sample any 😦 so I’d love to give it another go this year! Oh, and it’s good to see you back around blogland, by the way!

  3. With only DH and I, I have quit putting up jellies and jams. I lack the energy to do so with having to everything else around here. However, while I was visiting my Aunties and cousins they gifted me with a variety of jams they’d made. The raspberry jam was finished off yesterday now I’m debating what jar to open next.

  4. I love having all the home made jams and marmalades in the cupboard, especially the ones which you can’t buy in the shops (to my knowledge!) like dandelion or apple and ginger. It does take up a lot of time for each batch though, when you factor in the fruit-gathering time. But everyone around me seems very appreciative of my efforts!

  5. I love blaackberry picking and we went last Sunday, got home and made crumbles, pies Blackberry slump and froze some.

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