Many Christmas fairs were held in Lisbon and its surrounding areas. I attended in some of these fairs. I like going there to show my bags and buy presents or just look at some very talended people's works.
When I went to IWP craft fair I learnt how to make Christmas tree using old magazines. Flavia, IWP vice-president, taught using Martha Stewart's technique. I bought some glitters and sprays to make trees but so far I do not have magazines. I am not the person who buys magazines to read and through away, mine usually kept for a long time because they are about craft or photography.
My bags at IPS Pamper Evening
Between these fairs last Saturday I had Chritsmas afternoon tea party at my house. Last Thursday night I baked my favourite brownies, which is always made whenever I have party at my house. I used Delia's recipe but only with walnuts. Baked sticky date cake, again Delia's, sausuage rolls, cheesecake and scones, which was forgotten to be brought to the table on Saturday. Now all of them are frozen to take to Italy when I leave for Christmas next week.
Of course, it was Christmas tea party and could not be without mince pies. I went to GB store to buy mince meat, never made for myself. The shop moved from Sao Joao de Estoril in Cascais to address Avenida das Comunidades Europeis 415.
My husband after searching for hours about perfect recipe for mince pies he made them. They were tasty and guests were happy to taste the British tradition. But my older daughter who can happily eat marmite did not like it. While he was baking mince pies I went to my studio to work on my new bag.
After the tea party I had dinner with couple of friends, which lasted until 11pm. It was nice to meet Fernando, who gave us interesting evening about Portugal and Portuguese culture.
Suddenly, Portuguese winter arrived in last Sunday. Today I drove in heavy rain for for a couple of hours but without meeting accidents. Although, FM radios were announcing that many motorways had several accidents. My speed was 70 kmh instead 120. You can guess how bad weather was.
Anyway, winter has to arrive at one point and it arrived quite late. Serra da Estrela mountains had snow. Lisbon areas had rains. Normal. Poor trees needed some water after several months of not having any drops.
I got inspired recently and made new bags which I will teach at Patch-mania.
And even I managed to start making a twister quilt. It was easy to sew 5" patches together but I took me three nights to solve the puzzle. I might start sewing tomorrow morning unless I see some problems. Wish me luck!
Swedish poet Swedish poet Tomas Transtroemer has been awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize for Literature. Here is Portugal the news received with great admiration because he wrote a poem about Lisbon and Funchal. Here is the poem.
In the Alfama quarter the yellow tramcars sang on the steep slopes.
There were two prisions. One was for thieves.
They waved through the grilled windows.
They shouted to be photographed.
‘But here,’ said the conductor giggling like a split man,
‘here sit politicians.’ I saw the façade the façade the façade
and high up in a window a man
who stood with a telescope to his eye and looked out over the sea.
Weekend went very well with family traveling for an hour for me to take some photos at Barclays Porsche polo game.
I have seen games on TV so many times and it is considered a "king of sport". I know that many rich and famous just go there to show off themselves and their wealth. Even members of royal family play the game. There was something like that on that day. I have seen a well dressed man, a little scarf under a shirt, wearing suit on 30 degree heat. Women bored to d aeath, they did not come to see the game but just show their jewellery.
Probably, ten percent of spectators were interested in a game but rest just came to be seen.
My experiment went not to bad I think and here are some photos, click here
A Spanish superstore El Corte Ingles is well known in Lisbon. From time to time the shop brings some exhibitions. Today I went to see Barbie exhibition on the 7th floor. There were many expensive Barbies costing more than €60 each. Some of them were collectible Barbie's with from the 1950s. Many of them were wearing beautiful gowns and costums. Sorry about photo quality, I took photos in my mobile.
This is Asian Goddes and Geisha made in 2006.
These are Japanese collections
Moderns party Barbies
Queen Amidala, she is wearing an old Mongolian head dress
After months not going to my sewing room I made new bags for summer. One is not quite finished but with a blue flower shoulder bag I am happy. Usually, I am always happy with my results. But sometimes I have to redo pattern again and again. One which I am working on now soon I will be ready to show you.
This red one is not finished yet. Have to think about what kind of handle it will have. In the photo it looks nice but I am not 100% satisfied with the result.
Энэ улаан цүнх арай л дуусаагүй байгаа юм. Ямар бариул хийхээ одоохондоо шийдээгүй байна. Зурган дээр их дажгүй харагдаж байгаа боловч, сэтгэлд арай л хүрээгүй байгаа юм.
Among all of these I hemmed several trousers, sewn some buttons for shirts. My machine was busy too. She had a long rest at the beginning of the summer and it is working hard now. While I was working put some music on and sang songs. Life is Beautiful!
This is great bag! It is a very roomy, a beach towel go inside very easily. If you come to my blog often you already know that I am fun of Japanese prints. I bought this fabric in Tunbridge Wells, UK, from the Sewing World fabric shop last Christmas. When I visited the shop this June, it made me cry because they are moving.
Another Japanese fabric used to make another Japanese style bag. Sorry for the photo. I got the pattern from Japanese book. Unfotunately, I cannot use this one because I accidently dropped bleach which was not closed properly on the bag. It was not me that used the bleach last time.
Reading books is my life. I can buy books from bookshops and on the net. In England I like visiting secondhand book shops because I can pay only one to five pounds for a book. This time I bought two cookery books. After marrying to a British man I started using Delia Smiths' books. I made many cakes from her recipes. The most famous is the Ameican Brownies. I added my collection with How to Cheat one.
Being Asian and running Asian lunch group I love to cook oriental meals. Almost 2,5kg heavy book published in 1989 but covers recipes from China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand (my favourite), Vietnam (have to learn more recipes to cook), Korea (love their food), Singapore, Sr Lanka, Burma, India, Pakistan, Japan (know how to cook many recipes but still would like to improve).
My FIL bought me Garden-Inspired Quilt Block Desings, lovely book, lots of quilts, uses paper-piercing techniques.
Barack Obama's Dreams From My Father, very readable, actually already finished. Have to start the other one The Last Empress, by Anchee Min.
A couple of days ago my family arrived to England from very hot or becoming very hot Portugal. When we left Lisbon it was +26C and when we landed in Gatwick after 20 minutes circling on top of it because of a plane's landing gear problem, the temperature dropped dramatically, +16C. Nice!
After an hour ride we arrived at my PILs place. Garden was blooming. Vegetable patch had many vegetables, few ready for dinner many not yet.
Since my arrival I had collected straberries and raspberries. Raspberries were easy to collect but I had to always look under leaves. Same as strawberries, but after collecting 500g strawberries my MIL said that she will collect them because I was putting in my bowl not yet ripe ones.
My DD1 was surprised that she can eat without washing raspberries. I had to do some explanation because poor little child always told to wash fruit before eating them. Many of them went to breakfast bowl, frozen, made ice creams and cheesecakes.
PILs had in their garden red currants, my favourite berries, my childhood memories. Somewhere in Mongolia, or to be precise in Dadal, Khentii aimag, during July I went with my grandmother to collect them in banks of Balj river. We made jams, or boil with creams and freeze, it would be almost like ice cream. When I came back for my summer holiday next summer, last jar of jam would be waiting for me. And circle would start again.
Nowadays, I buy in supermarkets, 100g costs me fortune, I would crash them and mix with cream and put on my bread. Yammy!
My family does not often go to Lisbon but today was a special day to be there. The Portuguese capital is preparing to celebrate Saint Antonio's day on 13 June. Street parties will be held, in Alfama and other districts of the capital. Lots of sardines will be grilled and washed down with "green" (young) wine. On top of that, I really wanted to go today, I am marking my tenth anniversary living in Portugal. A decade!
My family reflection in the window.
I went to a restaurant above Alfama but did not see grilled sardines on the menu's dish of the day so I asked a waiter if they had them. Of course, they had, without grilled sardines there would not be a Saint Antonio party! I had a typically Portuguese lunch with grilled sardines, arroz doce (rice pudding) and meia de leite (coffee with milk). The sardines were tastier than ten years ago. I might getting used to my Portuguese life.
My DD2 demanded to have my rice pudding. At the end I had some. Too sweet, but I like it occasionally.
Sardines were on buses, grills,
hanging from the door
stuck on the shop window
flapping on the balcony.
It is traditional to have mass weddings on this day, and in Lisbon the city hall will pay for them if the couples are poor. Today 16 couples were getting married at the Se cathedral, and tonight they would march on Popular Parades in Avenida da Liberdade. I did not see them arriving because I was told that they would arrive later in antique cars, but I saw their relatives arriving in nine buses escorted by police.
For the event the Portuguese media was there. RTP's camera was suspended at the front door of the cathedral. Others were running in streets to get their good shots.
And a famous Portuguese television morning show presenter João Baião was in his car behind the ninth bus. He was friendly, I asked him to roll his car window down for the photo and he did. I gave him my Portuguese-Mongolian Association business card, he looked at it, I guess, he will never look again. He was in a red mini but was quickly spotted and people were shouting "Senhor Joao!", "Senhor Joao!"
Nearby a lady was selling Beirao liquor. This is made in the north of the country. I tried once just for my curiosity. For people who like liquors it could be good but I cannot judge.
A lady had candles to tribute Santo Antonio in front of her shop door, hopefully, there would not be a fire!
Super Bock beer, had been delivered by Post! Sagres has to be there too. The price was just €1. I don't drink beer but I like Super Bock's advertising.
If you know what is written here, please let me know.
With all these stands selling beer, the party will go on!
Of course, what goes in must come out. The streets already smelled of urine.
Life in other parts of the capital was more normal, here are some tourists renting segways. I might try one day.
Someone had the idea to liven up a boring caravan parked closer to the Praça de Comercio.
The view of Sao Jorge castle was great from the praça...
...which also hosted a photo exhibition by Angelo Lucas, sponsored by many big names in Portugal.