Monday, December 21, 2015

three words

+ Tiny star-like flowers on my new sedum. I love how delicate they are and how the colours go with the grey foliage.
+ And Elusive primes - a zine created by my talented friend, Zoë. You can see more of her work - and that of other creative and clever women - in Three words: an anthology of Aotearoa/NZ women's comics coming out in March next year but available now to pre-order. Also some contributor profiles here and a radio interview with editor, Sarah Laing here.

How're your christmas/holiday preparations going? I bought a real tree this year but, I don't know, it looks a little sad. Real tree? Or artificial tree? What do you think?

Friday, December 18, 2015


Hydrangeas are in flower and cherries are in season - two good things at once.

Eating: the incomprehensibly delicious combination of rhubarb and strawberries. Together they make an amazing crumble. Recipe here for baking rhubarb in the oven. Crumble recipe here.

Reading: The New Yorker. It's the Mary Norris effect.

Monday, December 7, 2015


Some Crown Lynn treasures - "staccato" side plate and a pair of "narvik" dinner plates - found on our last holiday at Matakana. And a plate by Pauline McCoy purchased at the Big Clay Day Out held by the Auckland Studio Potters on Sunday.

Reading: Between you & me: confessions of a comma queen by Mary Norris who is a copy editor at The New Yorker. She started working there in 1978 so you could say she's an authority on spelling, punctuation and grammar. Which is what the book is about. Sounds pretty dull but, actually, it isn't. Review here.

Monday, November 30, 2015


I bought this sweet little elephant on Saturday from the Toi Ora stall at the Grey Lynn Park Festival. It was made by blind artist Juliet Jackson. He's quite a weighty little elephant with a bluish grey and chocolate brown shiny glaze. So sweet. He fits so neatly in my hand.

Reading: Ru by KimThuy

Monday, November 23, 2015


I've had a few days away "up north". We intended to camp - which we did for the first night - but ended up staying at friends' beach houses as the weather forecast was rain every day. As it turned out the weather wasn't so bad - cloudy, windy, chilly but with only a few showers. So we still got to do lots of walking. And we got to catch up with friends. Always good.
  • Mangawhai Heads. One of my favourite beaches. If I could buy my own beach house it would be here.
  • Point Wells. I love this mishmash of letterboxes. Don't know how number nine got to be there though.
  • Tawharanui. Lots of pukeko chicks around. And some great walking trails.
  • Walking back to Omaha after visiting the Matakana farmers' market. 
Reading: The book of Ruth by Jane Hamilton. This is so good. Please let it end well.

Monday, November 16, 2015


Tramping in the bush all day requires a few high energy snacks. So I've made a batch of Annabel Langbein's Superhero Balls in readiness for my next outdoor adventure. They are super easy to make - throw everything into a food processor and then roll into balls. Recipe here.
Also good as an after school snack. Or homemade christmas gift.

Reading: Here and somewhere else by Grace Paley and Robert Nichols. Described as political writing this is a small collection of short stories and poetry by husband and wife. Review here.

Thursday, November 12, 2015


I finished this little baby cardigan for a work colleague who is now the mother of two little girls. I love the soft grey - it's a nice gender neutral colour. (Patons Dreamtime merino 4 ply in colour "silver"). The pattern is from Panda book, #205 Adorable baby knits. 

I'm thinking of knitting this next. I've joined a women's tramping group and we're expected to have a woollen hat in our kit. Yes, even in summer.

Watching: The big year. This is an OK film starring Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson. But it's based on the book The big year by Mark Obamscik who followed three birdwatchers competing to become birding champion of the year back in 1998. The idea is to spot the most bird species within North America during the course of a year. I loved the book - an incredible true story of obsession. 

Viewing: At the beach - 100 years of summer fashion showing at the Maritime Museum until 8 February 2016. An interesting and nostalgic exhibition of New Zealand made or designed beachwear and a history of our love of the sea.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Some recent pottery purchases. The black bowl was made by Kirsten Dryburgh and bought from her studio. The bowls are by Peter Lange and the pink vase by "JD" both purchased from the Clay Works Potters' market back in August.
The Auckland Studio Potters annual fair is coming up in December for those of you living in Auckland and in need of pottery.

Reading: First lady: from boyhood to womanhood by Liz Roberts with Alison Mau. Elizabeth Roberts was the first New Zealander to undergo full sex-change surgery. Listen to her radio interview here on National Radio.

Watching: Slow West. I love a western.

Friday, October 30, 2015

cat bear rabbit

Little "anything animals" that are quick and fun to knit and a nice gift. Inspiration here. Pattern here.
I knitted these in a finer wool so modified the pattern. The legs and arms are made by knitting i-cords and, like cables, they are a little bit of knitting magic. Excellent i-cord tutorial here.
Have a wonderful weekend.

Monday, October 26, 2015


A blue and cream striped baby sweater started over a year ago for a neighbour's baby. (I don't know why it took me so long. I think I just went off knitting. Back into it now though.) I've made this pattern before, here. I never thought about it when I chose the colours but they are definitely nautical. Maybe she'll grow up to be a sea-faring girl.

Update: The winner of The Bird of the Year 2015 is the bar-tailed godwit. There was a bit of a scandal with the competition this year when "two Auckland teenagers" submitted around 200 votes for the kōkako using different email addresses. Go figure.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

lemon and rosemary

I took a batch of these biscuits up to Martins Bay. I've made them many times and they're really very good. And popular. Here's the recipe. I hope you get the chance to make them.

Lemon and rosemary biscuits
1 cup caster sugar
1 heaped tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 heaped tbsp finely chopped lemon zest
170g butter
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt

In a small bowl, combine the sugar, rosemary and lemon zest. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter, olive oil and 3/4 cup of the sugar mixture until light and fluffy.
Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix well to combine. Bring the mixture together with your hands to form a firm ball of dough. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Divide the dough into about 20 balls. Roll each one in the leftover sugar mixture and place on the baking tray. Flatten firmly with your hand or the bottom of a glass. Sprinkle any remaining sugar mixture on top of the biscuits.
Bake for 12 minutes until lightly golden. Cool for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

Reading: bonnie delicious, petite kitchen, and my darling lemon thyme.

Monday, October 19, 2015


Welcome to hello tangelo! Thanks for finding me here. This blog is a continuation of my previous blog, never odd, and it's about living in New Zealand - going places, making things, a little bit of gardening, reading, food.

These photos are from a recent overnight stay at Martins Bay - a pretty little bay on the Mahurangi Peninsula (about an hour's drive from Auckland) and a nice place for a quiet holiday. Or a day trip. Or picnic. And a popular spot for birds. We saw plenty of fat tui on our walks and these birds - red-billed gull, New Zealand dotterel and Oystercatchers - down on the beach. If you're interested in NZ wildlife you might like to vote for Bird of the Year. But hurry - voting closes this Sunday, October 25th.

Watching: Everest
Reading:  Tripwire by Lee Child - Entertaining page-turner for those times when you want to read without thinking too much. Contains a few (not overly described) nasty bits that you can skip over.
The weight of silence by Catherine Therese - A funny, sad, honest memoir of growing up in Australia in the 60s and 70s.
Fine little day: ideas, collections and interiors by Elisabeth Dunker - the subtitle says it all. Loads of photos and inspiration.
Viewing: HaaPoom by Seung Yul Oh at Te Uru until November 8 - Includes this hilarious video. Turn the volume way down before watching.