31 January 2015

Parents-in-law: introducing my Northern out-laws

Surviving childhoods living in the war torn town of Grimsby during World War Two, making sure my trawler-brawler husband and his brother safely weathered thousands of childhood fracas and laughing through marriage for more than 50 years, my mother and father-in-law are the wonders of my British world. When the team at Work the World asked me who my unsung heroes are (and deserved to be sent a Fortnum & Mason hamper on our behalf), it had to be my British whanau.

Parents-in-law: introducing my out-laws - Adventures of a London Kiwi
They would kill me if they knew I took this, but this is my favorite photo of them, walking hand-in-hand into the wind.

As an expat, you have a slightly different relationship with your better-half's family. Instead of the usual Mother/Daughter-in-law relationship, my Mother-in-law found herself adopting a quirky, foreign, extra daughter with an eye rolling whilst nagging her husband habit. Not a nice British girl who understands local flavour palates, sunny holidays to Spain and English etiquette (something I've still to grasp, but luckily they allow me a lot of slack), but a crazy Kiwi wanderluster whose idea of a wonderful trip is shivering in an Arctic Circle field watching the Northern Lights shimmer across the skies, cooks pumpkin and sweet potato like it's going out of fashion and delights in Northern English bakeries like 'The Bun Shop' (the "u" has to be pronounced to rhyme with pull).

30 January 2015

Friday figments and photos

Despite spending most of this week shivering, it has been wonderful. Great memories of our honeymoon in the South of France (we must, must go back soon if only to get some vitamin D and improve those 5+ year old photos), booking exciting new trips, celebrating too much, reminiscing about New Zealand, the excited chattering of afternoon tea, guilt at not taking the best photos that I can or writing particularly well, concentrating on laughter instead and snuggling into a warm, unctious scarf.

Life lately - Adventures of a London Kiwi

But hey, that's real life.

Life lately - Adventures of a London Kiwi

29 January 2015

Blenheim Palace, Bladon churchyard, a near miss and Winston Churchill

I adore London with all of my heart, but sometime all it takes is a 4 word message from a good friend to make me yearn to leave it. "New car, road trip?" did the trick beautifully in September last year, and before we knew it Kelly's smurfmobile was packed full of gluten-free snacks, blasting Katy Perry and cruising down the twisting country lanes through Gloucestershire.

As two Kiwi princesses (for the weekend at least), we made it our epic quest to visit as many castles as it was humanly possible to fit into two days, and though to begin with one of the more infamous - Blenheim Palace. Imposing, ornate and fascinating we tagged onto one of the free tours to learn as much as we could soak in.

28 January 2015

(Magic) Winter Fruit Sponges

We've passed the hypnotic date of the 19th of January (aka blue monday) where the shackles of New Years Resolutions have lost their grip, winter is starting to creep frosty fingers on rosy cheeks and battle umbrellas are being brandished at the slightest hint of sleety rain. We all need a touch of comfort; hearty treats to warm the cockles of our hearts.

Winter Fruit Sponge Recipe - Adventures of a London Kiwi

Have no fear, I have the baked solution. Magic winter fruit sponges. They're so simple it's almost criminal and can be made with ingredients found in your cupboard any time you need a cheeky winter warmer.