Tuesday, 22 November 2016


At this time of year our woodburner gets lit most evenings and it's time to restock our woodshed, cut loads of kindling and make pine cone fire lighters ready for the cold winter days ahead. Here's how we make pine cone firelighters, that also make wonderful Christmas gifts too.

You will need;
Plenty of pine cones, soy wax, candle wick, an old saucepan, spoon, baking tray and essential oils - I use mandarin, cinnamon and clove.

Melt the wax in the pan on a low heat and add in drops of essential oil to the melted wax. Then wrap a a few inches of wick around the base of the pine cone, leaving a few centimetres of wick sticking out.

ladle the hot wax into the dimples of the baking tray and place the cone into each one. Put in a cool place to set, they should lift out easily. Store in a cool place ready for those winter fires!

Monday, 21 November 2016


My dear dear friend is currently undergoing a course of radiotherapy in Bristol at the moment and is approaching it with such dignity and courage she is a complete hero. When I went with her last week, she took me to this small but totally fab cafe called The Workhouse Cafe on Perry Road. Amazing cakes, delicious baguettes, soups and salads served on wooden boards and trendy black enamelware. We enjoyed a chai and regular lattes served beautifully in French bistro glasses. It was certainly a day of contrasts, people watching the hipsters in the cafe followed by people watching in a waiting room full of people wearing their stories on their faces as they waited for treatment.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016


A pinch and a punch for the first of the month as the saying goes. It is the first of November and with the clocks going back and the evenings drawing in I will soon be reaching for my winter woollens. This year I am delighted to have been sent this Liberty Kelly woollen poncho which I am throwing on over everything at the mo to keep me snug. 

"Made in England, for real people."

Liberty Kelly is British through and through, she produces classic items with a contemporary twist, fitted and feminine, suitable for every shape/size and as her website says "made in England, for real people". 

The poncho that I have been gifted to review is a rather lovely midnight blue tweed, woven in Yorkshire using wool from Cheviot sheep. The arm slits are leather bound and the neck has a toggle fastening which I think is my favourite feature of the design. It is roomy enough for a thick jumper to be worn underneath and uber practical to pull on when I nip out to let the chickens out in the morning, stylish enough for the Cotswold mums on the school run and casual enough to be worn over jeans for those days when I really can't be bothered! I love it and know that it will become a firm staple of my mum uniform. 

You can win your own sea blue blanket Liberty Kelly poncho by entering the competition, run in partnership with This Is Your Kingdom on their website. It's a very straightforward name out of the hat competition so very easy to enter. 

Enter the competition at This Is Your Kingdom
Find out more about Liberty Kelly

Good luck!

Disclaimer: the author has been gifted a poncho for review purposes and has not been remunerated for this post. All reviews and opinions on Bradshaw and Sons are the authors own. 
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