A New Year message from Savour the Moment

An explosion of colourful fireworks above the Edinburgh skyline taken in 2015 by Eric Richardson

Hope… for the New Year

A New Year message from Savour the Moment

The beginning of a new year is a time of resolutions and fresh starts.  Dark, winter days can make staying positive very difficult.  But for now, we have hope.

‘Once you choose hope, anything’s possible’.

Actor Christopher Reeve
An explosion of colourful fireworks above the Edinburgh skyline taken in 2015 by Eric Richardson
Hogmanay fireworks, Edinburgh 2015. Photo credit: Eric Richardson

Dark days

Written in 1908 a poem was brought to the attention of King George VI in 1939, when the days were very dark indeed.   He included it in his radio broadcast to the empire. Who knows what the New Year holds for us?  It is so full of uncertainty. Here is that poem, a message of hope for us all.

The Gate of the Year

by Minnie Louise Haskins

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
And he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

New Year fireworks Photo credit: Eric Richardson
New Year fireworks
Photo credit: Eric Richardson

Happy New Year…

and as the comedian Dave Allen, popular  in the 1970s famously said: ‘May your god go with you’.

Goodbye 2018, Hello 2019

Goodbye 2018.  That was the year that was

 

That was the year that I started my blog.  I visited places, made things, shared experiences with the grandchildren and blogged about them. It was an amazing summer. I loved it.

Fishing takes patience
Fishing on the Chesterfield Canal

Recipe archive

One day my blog will be the place that my children go to for the recipes that they currently request on a regular basis.http://savourthemoment.co/my-recipes/how-to-make-the-perfect-braised-red-cabbage/

Red cabbage and apples help to make a colourful display of all the ingredients required to make the perfect braised, red cabbage
All the ingredients needed to make the perfect, braised, red cabbage

Guest blogger

I did some guest blogging on a couple of other sites like https://thegrandparenthub.com/ this is a site that shares ideas and things to do with the grandkids and is full of inspiration.  And then there’s my local ‘What’s In and What’s On’ website for my region https://www.innorthnotts.co.uk/ which is full of things to do and places to visit.

Travel

Travel played a big part in my life during  2018.  South coast of England, east coast of the USA , west coast of the USA and Scotland.  There is an old saying ‘travel broadens the mind’ so perhaps there should be a bit more of it.

Route 66, Santa Monica
The end of Route 66 is on Pier Park, Santa Monica

The New Year is just around the cirner

2019 is already beckoning and it would be good to get to know my own country better.  Perhaps an extended tour of the UK in a motor home? https://www.justgo.uk.com/ All suggestions gratefully received.

Get active

There should be more exercise.  I could sign up for a ‘long walk’ or train for a half marathon.  Again, all suggestions considered. I do need a challenge.

Brand spanking new trainers

New skills

And then of course there is ‘sausage making’.  I recently purchased a sausage maker.  That is a story/blog, for another day.

It’s the best policy

I have to be honest and admit that I don’t like the turn of the year.  The ticking of the clock.  The anticlimax. The resolutions. The stepping into the unknown.  But it is just another day with a different number when all is said and done… isn’t it?

Hello 2019

So, with some trepidation I will welcome in 2019.  It boils down to two things: being healthy and happy.  That is all I wish for my family, friends and of course you and me.

Happy New Year dear reader, I hope it will be kind to us.

 

 

Wishing you warmth and good cheer this Christmas

Angel chimes, with lit advent candles on the mantelpiece by the Christmas tree.

I wish you a very happy Christmas and a healthy and prosperous New Year.

Angel chimes, with lit advent candles on the mantelpiece by the Christmas tree.
Angel chimes, with lit advent candles on the mantelpiece by the Christmas tree.

This image makes me think of the poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’.   It contains all the names of the reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen Comet and Cupid, Donner and Blitzen and of course Rudolph.  Which got me nine points in a recent pub quiz!

Wishing you warmth and good cheer this  Christmas.

 

 

Make a stunning Christmas centrepiece

A very effective table centrepiece

It takes a bit of patience but it’s worth it

Make a stunning, table centrepiece using your Christmas cake and fondant icing.

Fondant icing reindeer and trees with tea lights to make a woodland scene
Fondant icing reindeer and trees with tea lights to make a woodland scene

You will need:

  • Christmas cake with marzipan icing
  • Large pack of fondant icing, I got mine from https://www.aldi.co.uk/
  • Rolling pin
  • Scalpel or small, sharp, pointed knife
  • Cardboard, pencil and scissors to make template
  • Icing sugar and water for the grace icing
  • A few toothpicks

Ice the cake

Roll out the fondant to the size of the cake, leaving enough spare to make the reindeer.  Dampen the marzipan and place the fondant over.  Smooth the surface.  Leave for a couple of days to harden before making the reindeers snow scene.

Christmas cake with a layer of marzipan under a layer of roll-out fondant icing
Christmas cake with a layer of marzipan under a layer of roll-out fondant icing

Make the template

Find a simple line drawing or picture of a reindeer.  Sketch onto a piece of card.  It doesn’t need to be posh card, I used a piece from a tea-bag box https://www.yorkshiretea.co.uk

Cut out the shape and then… carefully and painstakingly cut out the reindeer.

Carefully cut out reindeers shapes using a card template
Carefully cut out reindeers shapes using a card template

Leave them alone

Put them on a board to dry out for a couple of days.  Leave them out of reach.  They become quite brittle and so need to be treated with great care.

Glace icing snow

Place three tea lights on the cake. up a paste with icing sugar and a few drops of hot water.  Use this to make snow drifts in which the reindeer will stand.

Set the scene

With great care place the reindeer in the snow as in the picture.  Use toothpicks to prop them up until they have set.  Some of the legs may come off! In which case they become  laying reindeer.  Some of the antlers may snap off – in which case they become does!

Use toothpicks to prop up reindeer until they have set into position
Use toothpicks to prop up reindeer until they have set into position

In the woods

Trees can be made from simple, right-angle triangles.  Lean three together in a puddle of glacé icing with a little icing spread on the edge where they join together.

Centrepiece

Light the candles and turn out the lights for a stunning, Christmas  centrepiece.

 

 

 

Christmas Market Time!

 

Wonderful creations on every stall of the Saint Nicholas Market
Wonderful creations on every stall of the Saint Nicholas Market

It’s Christmas market time

Where better to indulge in the sights, sounds and smells of the yuletide season but your nearest Christmas Market.  With the Yuletide season upon us, the aroma of mulled wine and spices, and the sounds of Christmas songs… we’re ready to fully immerse ourselves into the festive spirit with a visit to a Christmas market.  The streets of all the UK’s major cities – and some of the towns and tsbrave the chilly winds and visit one before it’s too late!

Crowds flock to the Vity of York for the Saint Nicholas Fair
Crowds flock to the City of York for the Saint Nicholas Fair

The Saint Nicholas Fair

The Saint Nicholas Fair, York.  My Christmas market of choice this year is – the Saint Nicholas Fair in York www.visityork.org/whats-on/christmas.  It is even better when you let the train take the strain https://www.lner.co.uk

The lovely Christmas aromas coming from the traditional chalets
The lovely Christmas aromas coming from the traditional chalets

Traditional chalets

The historic streets of York come alive during the  winter months.  Take a stroll through the vibrant market stalls of the St Nicholas Fair.  Peek inside traditional chalets prettily decked-out with fairy lights and just follow your nose.

From baubles to baskets, an interesting mix of wares on every stall
From baubles to baskets, an interesting mix of wares on every stall

It makes Christmas shopping very nearly enjoyable

The St Nicholas Fair is at the heart of Christmas shopping in the City of York https://www.visityork.org/whats-on/christmas .  Over 100 traditional style chalets are dotted along Parliament Street, St Sampson’s Square, The Judge’s Lodging and Coppergate.  A million visitors enjoyed the delights of the Christmas market last year.

Original and unique. Items crafted from the wood from old wine barrels
Original and unique. Items crafted from the wood from old wine barrels

A seasonal tradition

Visits to Christmas markets are fast becoming one of the UK’s favourite seasonal traditions.  It doesn’t matter where you are in the country, you are never too far away from a Christmas market.

Hurry, only one week left…

York is a Christmas shopping heaven with its eclectic mix of shops and the magical Christmas market. The festive shopping started at St Nicholas Market In mid-November and will continue until December 23rd. The ancient city and the market combine to provide a very Dickensian feel with a hint of Victoriana with the busy market stalls which sell everything – crafts, local produce, and lots of quirky things made in Yorkshire. 

 

Colourful, eye-catching and tasty. A homemade confectionery stall
Colourful, eye-catching and tasty. A homemade confectionery stall

York Railway Station
York railway station is a ten minute walk from where it is all happening.  This is a really great opportunity to soak up the city’s medieval charm and enjoy the festive flavours that transform York into such a magical place.

Traditional chalets

The St Nicholas Fair is at the heart of Christmas shopping in the City of York https://www.visityork.org/whats-on/christmas .  Over 100 traditional style chalets are dotted along Parliament Street, St Sampson’s Square, The Judge’s Lodging and Coppergate.  A million visitors enjoyed the delights of the Christmas market last year.

Traditional wooden cabins that house the Christmas market traders
Traditional wooden cabins that house the Christmas market traders

Visits to Christmas markets are fast becoming one of the UK’s favourite seasonal traditions.  It doesn’t matter where you are in the country, you are never too far away from a Christmas market.

A good excuse to experience a local hostelry

And of course there are many pubs – many of them boasting their own unique piece of history and local ales and homemade food.