Neglected Structures & Overgrown Place #29 — Part-time Leather Chairs & Secret Reading

Leather Chairs

Throughout the year, these chairs have come and gone from their present position. I reckon they’re family rumpus chairs that are kept hidden from visitors: most especially from snooty relatives coming to stay for Christmas and the New Year.

As you can see, their basic framework is good and the leather well maintained (ignore the bird droppings and rain on them) but, if you look closely, the seat cushions have indents in them, each of them bearing the shape of their usual occupant’s bottom. And just because people are related to one another, it doesn’t mean they all have the same size backside.

Personally, I’ve not hidden any item of furniture from visitors. However, this year I admit to removing a particular novel from the sitting-room when some of Mister’s erudite friends came to our house for a meeting about local arts and culture events. The book was such an embarrassment that, even on Goodreads, I didn’t own up to reading it; although there were two perfectly valid reasons for it being in my possession. Firstly, because my daughter lent it to me and, secondly, because I wanted to know why the darned thing was a bestseller. Let’s just say that I won’t bother with the other two novels in the trilogy and would have given it 2-stars in a review.

What, if anything, have you hidden from visitors?

When You’re Sick of Christmas Cake & Pudding

None of my family like Christmas cake as it’s too rich and heavy, but we adore the taste of marzipan, which is why I invented this cake.

Okay, it’s Christmas Eve and you’ve already bought or made your cakes and puddings, but this recipe will do just as well as a celebration cake for New Year, or as a pudding with custard and/or ice cream. So get baking next weekend and surprise everyone with this super-gooey and tasty offering.




150 g sunflower baking spread at room temperature
150 g golden unrefined caster sugar
3 large eggs
225 g plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoonful baking powder
150 g natural glace cherries, halved
250 g golden marzipan, cut into cubes
demerara sugar for sprinkling


Pre-heat oven to gas mark 3 or 170º C

Prepare 18-20 cm round tin, lined with baking parchment, or greased and lined with greaseproof paper.

Put the sunflower spread and caster sugar into a bowl. Mix with an electric whisk or beat with a wooden spoon until light and fluffy.

Whisk the eggs in a separate bowl and add them a little at a time into the butter and sugar.

Fold in the sieved flour and baking powder with a tablespoon. Best to fold in a third of the flour at a time. The mixture should end up of a soft dropping consistency. If it is too dry, add a dessertspoon of milk.

Stir in the halved cherries and cubed marzipan.

Spoon the mixture into the lined cake tin and smooth it out with the back of the spoon. Sprinkle a generous amount of demerara sugar on the top of the cake.

Place the cake in the centre of the oven and bake for 2-2½ hours, but check after 2 hours, as this is usually long enough as you don’t want your cake to dry out.

Leave in the tin to cool before removing.



So the world didn’t end: welcome to 2013!


Window on the world.
It’s never a normal day
through an author’s eyes!

With love and thanks to all my blogging friends for having made my first year on WordPress such an  enriching experience.

May peace and inspiration prevail over adversity and disincentive in 2013.

For The Love Of Haiku

Don’t poison that mouse!
A rodent fattened on cheese–
Kitty’s dream dessert.

My apologies for skipping last week’s haiku challenge and producing a rather belated one this week, but have had countless musical commitments over Christmas. Anyone else who wants to jump on board at the last moment and join in with the fun, please check out

Special Christmas greetings and New Year good wishes to adollyciousirony and all her art game players who’ve provided us haiku lovers with so many eccentric, if not surreal images as our writing prompts throughout 2012.

You can check out the making of the image above at

%d bloggers like this: