Short. Hungry. Addicted to tea. Hi, I'm Emma. I like to write stuff.

I spent over 12 hours on this cake, and just as I gently pressed the last sculpted tiny scone onto my handmade and painted icing cake stand, husband tells me he's left the flash card for our SLR at work.

Fantastic.  Thankfully it's not 2004 and my camera phone does a nice enough job, despite the yellowy overhead lights.  I would have taken it outside for better lighting, but being summer, and in England, it was pissing it down with rain.  So everything was against me.

But who am I to let the weather and my husbands forgetfulness end my attempts at recording my hard work?

So here, in all of it's colour corrected glory, is the story of how I made this cake.

My Auntie Bee has made our birthday cakes for the past 26 years.  I've had trolls with candy floss hair, a sulky teen leaning over a computer, cookbooks, art pads, giant cows and shopping bags.

So as soon as I found an interest in baking, I started to return the favour.  This year I decided to push the boat out a little and attempt a version of a cake I had seen on the talented Emily's blog a few months back.  Here is the link, and with much better photography than this post will have.

So how was it done?  When it came to making afternoon tea parts, I had to let the icing dry before I could paint them, and then dry again before putting it all together.  Each part was made separately and then assembled on the cake.

So i made one hell of a mess.

My first attempt at plates & saucers failed (they were too thick and wouldn't set.)  But my teapot, teacups, sandwiches and tasty treats were all drying nicely.

The teapot was easy enough, despite my spout looking a little flaccid and sorry for itself, and I ended up making an extra lid after my attempts and putting a little handle on the top ruined the original shape.

I remade the plates, plus a few spare ones in case any broke in the assembly.  It was a bloody good job I did.  Then I painted the same pattern onto the plates, parts of the cake stand and teacups.

The worst part was the cake stand.  I don't know why I did that too myself.  One extra hard push and the whole thing snapped in half.  Assembling tiny sandwiches and scones to a delicate sheet of icing, with shaky big fat hands was incredibly difficult.

But we got there.  I say we, but Kris actually played Spyro games and napped whilst I assembled and made this cake.  Which is why there are no pictures of me making it.  What a rubbish glamous assistant he turned out to be.

So after 12 hours (split over two days)  I was putting the finishing touches to the cake.

Everything was made from icing, and was fiddly as hell.

1 teapot
4 teacups and sauces
1 cake stand
1 sugar pot complete with mini sugar cubes
1 milk jug
1 cake knife
1 cake plate
3 serving plates
20 mini ham sandwiches
4 scones
1 pot of jam
1 pot of clotted cream
8 various pastries
4 eclairs
1 victoria sponge
4 spoons
1 table runner

All I can say was it was a bloody perilous 10 minutes car ride over to my Auntie's house.

But I think she liked it.

So then onto the best part, eating it.  I went for a traditional classic sponge, with a redcurrant and strawberry filling.

She refused to cut through any of the decorations, so carefully dismantled the cake before cutting.

And that's about it.

Happy Birthday Auntie Bee!

Me and the blog.  We ended up taking a break.

After months of opening up a blank screen, watching the little line thingy flash a few times before closing it down I decided that if I had nothing to say, I wouldn't write at all.  After all the sun was shining, and I had places to travel.  I would pick it up when I had something to say.

Then the proverbial shit, hit the proverbial fan.

Kris contracted salmonella.

Now, I'd just like to state, that as primarily a food blog, I did not give my husband salmonella, but he gave it to himself by cooking nothing but sausages, whilst I was out of action with a B-12 deficiency problem.  (Pro-tip, if you cut out meat and dairy for a length of time, please use supplements!)

Yes, that's right.  Just sausages.  Breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Sausages.  For quite a few days.

And some of those sausages were obviously a bit dodgy.  And he shared that delight with Genna.

Whilst Kris and Genna suffered with Salmonella (and it's horrible messy symptoms) two of our ratties passed away within 6 days of each other.  That sounds bad, let me just state that they did not have any of the sausages.

They were both quite elderly for rats but it is still horrible to say goodbye to any furry family members.  Especially when your human family members are in the hospital and you have a poorly pooch.

Rip little ratties :(  I do miss the cuddles.

So as it were, blogging on top of life's challenges, seemed like a chore I wasn't in the mood for.  The blog got pushed further and further down the food chain of responsibility, behind "Make the house smell less like dog poo"

It's a few months later, and we are no longer a salmonella household, and our remaining furry family members are on the up.  So let's get to the good stuff, because it's not all doom and gloom.  In between the ratty funerals, hospital visits and the rest of life's bullpants, there has been more good stuff than not.  Since we last caught up, all this has gone down.

I made a birthday cake

Glitter exploded onto it and I made it the day before a holiday, but I feel it was a success.  It was for a very excited 6 year old who loves bugs and flowers.

We went to Rome during a heatwave (Post coming soon)
So good.  SO GOOD.  I feel it's going to take a few parts to get it all across.  I am desperately Romesick.

We had afternoon tea in a castle

It felt like Hogwarts.  But smaller, and in the Midlands.  I got to eat a lot of husbands share too because of his recovering salmonella belly.  So there's always a plus to these things.

My brother got older (and we spent his birthday getting pies in the face)

I got older


My other 'little' brother turned 21

Even though this is not possible because it felt like yesterday that he was running around in Thomas the tank engine pants or sporting a cute little mini Gareth Gates Fringe.  CUE CUTE GARETH GATE FRINGE PICTURE

I am probably going to pay for putting that there.

I found these old pictures of our dog Logan

Yes this deserved it's own new bulletin.  LOOK AT THEM.

I met with lovely vegan blogger Ellie

I found this bargain of a book in a antique shop.

I made this birthday cake for my Auntie Bee (post to come)

There have been weddings
And lots and lots of recipe creations

Yep.  No more flapping about.

  As I write this, the UK is experiencing a mini heatwave.  It's pretty hot.  Alot of people are talking about it.  Luckily, we were away at the beach when the sun first appeared.  Our first holiday with Gen, and her first time on the beach.

If you'd a little backstory on Genna read this: Don't worry here's my butt - The 'tail' of my pooch.  She's been with me since I was 13, and is pretty awesome.  Go on, go have a gander, there's a lot of pictures of her in hats.

Let's get down to business.  There is a lot of things in this post.  Sunsets.  Food.  Beaches.  Typical instagram jumpy asshole pictures.  Baywatch dogs.  It's all here.

I'll start by introducing who'll you'll be seeing a lot of.

L-R - Kris, myself, Ayse & James.
Yep, us.

The journey from our county to the middle of Cornwall was a long one.  We set off at about 8 in the morning and arrived a little after three, with some pit-stops for coffee, dog peeing and leg stretching.  I don't think Gen was complaining too much about the seating arrangements though.

One place we stopped off is a favourite of mine, The Jamaica Inn.  It's the title and setting of the Daphne du Maurier novel and recent TV adaption, but that's not the main reason I love it (I've been a fair few times prior to this).  It's got an awesome story, built in 1750  as a coaching inn, it has a butt-load of history. Stories of smuggling, and ghosts (it's supposed to be really haunted) not to mention the whole place is lovely to walk round and it still contains the old bar.

We just had a coffee, and Gen emptied their water bowl, but it was a good pit-stop none-the-less as the sun was shining, and it was starting to get really bloody hot.

Gen had just spotted food. 

Short arms do not make for a flattering selfie.
Then we were off, the next hour down to the place where we'd be resting our heads for the next few nights.

We were staying in beautifully restored cottage, an old school mistresses house, (I think) with tons of charm, and two hosts that were proud as punch to show it to us.  They had a big field that Gen was allowed to roam, with a brilliant view of the sunset.  Over the next few days, we'd learn about the restoration, and what it looked like before, but the main thing was the kitchen.

It had an awesome, VERY well stocked kitchen.  Which considering we had come with the intention of cooking all our own meals was perfect.  We ate dinners either in the living room overlooking the fields or in the little courtyard.  Such an awesome backdrop to our little adventure.  If you fancy checking it out, it's here.

No, I haven't been paid / sponsored to leave that there, I feel compelled to share it.

After unpacking and settling in, we couldn't wait to get walking.  We bundled (a little reluctantly) back into the car for a short drive to take a coastal walk to the beach.

If you ever take a coastal walk in Cornwall, you will always be taken aback by how beautiful it is.

And windy.

Really, bloody windy.

but mostly beautiful.

After trekking the coastal paths for about an hour, we reached the beach to let off on her first beach adventure.

She loved it.  At first she was hesitant of the wet sand and the sea....

But after a few minutes, she became super dog, and literally ran everywhere.  I've never seen her so excited and happy.

Though to say Gen was the only one enjoying the beach would be a massive lie.

I am the only one blissfully unaware of the impending wet dog.

Then I started getting hungry, and I was making that fact pretty well known, so as the sun started to set, we headed back up the coastal path to the car.

We got back, made some quick food and watched the sunset at the same time.  No picture of the food, too hungry to waste time with photos.

Bright an early the next morning, Gen went for a leisurely sniff in the adjoining field before we set off to St. Ives.  I don't have many pictures of St. Ives due to heat / laziness / too much food in my hands, but there we go.

It was bloody hot in St. Ives and I had a really bad case of hay fever, but did we let that ruin our morning!  Hell no!  We wondered the shops, soaked up the sun and bought some lush food from the many little shops dotted around.  We got fish and chips, and ate it by the sea.  Luckily no seagulls stole our food.

Back home we made some dinner,  pictured above.  Then we set off for another evening beach adventure.

See that?  I am going to poop down there.

The sky this particular evening was beautiful.

The next day, we had cream tea on the brain.  We ventured to St. Micheals Mount.

So far, it was boiling hot, so we walked across the causeway (it disappears under the sea after a certain point in the day) and found a shaded area to have a brew, some sweet stuff and a bowl of water.

Then off to Mousehole, which was teeny & sweet.  Lots of narrow winding streets on hills.  We walked around for a few hours, had a little rest over looking the sea (and having some snacks) and then we scarpered off home for a last evening feast.

After dinner, we bundled the car up with some pudding, cider and blankets and went to watch the sunset on another beach.


Gen, Kris and I climbed up some rocks, made a little base and watched the stars come out.  The only editing I did to this picture was lighten it.  It really did look this beautiful in real life.

The next day was home-day.  We said goodbye to our hosts, packed up our car and made our way home.  Not without a little pit-stop in Padstow.

Where we also happened across mine & Kris' family who were also holidaying in Cornwall.

We got in a few drinks, wondered the beach there, grabbed a fish an chips from Rick steins and set off home.

Major sad face.

Take me back!

Emma | Fork and Good
Married. Mid-20s. Documenting it all via vaguely sarcastic and sweary blog posts. Obsessions changes weekly.