Food, Uncategorized

A recipe from across the Atlantic*

My baking repertoire expanded this week.

I was given this recipe for butteries by a neighbour recently. They are a speciality of the North East of Scotland, particularly Aberdeen, a flaky buttery confection, perhaps the Scottish version of croissants; but unlike their French cousins these pastries are salty.


My first memory of them is one in which they were elusive. I’d gone  to the North East for the wedding of a college friend and my travel companion who knew the area better insisted I try them. Unfortunately our search took place  as we drove back South the morning after the wedding and fell foul of Sunday closing. Not a buttery could be found.


Later they began to be available in Edinburgh but I was never that keen. Now I think I just didn’t try the right ones. They were a bit fiddly to make being a puff pastry, and very far from “healthy” as they are full of fat and quite salty. But the end result. Mmm. Even if I do say it myself. Flaky, buttery scrumptiousness.

A picture you ask? Too late. Sorry Reader, I ate them**



*Clachan sound which runs past Sheiling is technically the Atlantic, our neighbour lives on the mainland .

** I didn’t eat them all, MrS had some too and we froze a batch before baking.





A little circular story


We spent Christmas away from home,  luckily Santa was able to find  us down in Abergavenny and filled up our stockings. This collection of stories appeared in George’s.


Imagine his surprise when he found this inside


And so he set off in search of the house. Luckily it was still standing, slightly less so George had forgotten his phone so had no way of taking a photo.

Today this arrived, by post this time,  not Santa.

ladyvanishesback cover

Completing the circle.









History, Uncategorized

Exploring the past

We were away down south for the holidays, visiting my family in Wales. While there,  I took the opportunity to visit the town where one of my maternal great grandfathers was born. I’d found out about this branch of the family largely thanks to the great local history site Thornbury Roots. I was amazed to find my great, great grandmother was named Caroline!  This was purely coincidental, my parents  just liked the name which was very popular in the early 60s.

My  great grandfather lived in this house


with his parents and eight siblings. The family lived at other addresses in Thornbury and one of my great grandfather’s brothers ran a decorating business from this house


on Castle street.


My great-grandfather left the town and moved to Wales where he married my great grandmother. She was also a migrant from England;  her family came from Dorset. But that’s a story for another day.