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Gooey Tear & Share Cheesy Bread


New Years Eve! Its hard to believe that we are at the end of what has been an amazingly difficult year for many if not all of us. This has absolutely been a year for the books. I think I join in with many of you in wishing and hoping that 2021 will be a lot kinder all around!

Needless to say because of Covid, celebrations will be somewhat subdued this year on many fronts. Its not a problem for me as I have never been one to go out and carouse on New Years Eve.  

I raised a rather large family and could never afford the cost of a sitter as well as going out to a dance or a party in my younger years. Staying home has always been pretty normal for me.  

As well my ex husband was in the Military Police so he always had to work on NYE.  That meant staying at home with the kiddles and enjoying a finger food feast. We would watch our favourite DVD's and eat picky bits until they came out our ears. 

We would all be trying hard to stay up until 12 o'clock so we could watch Dick Clark's Rockin New Year's Eve and watch the big apple fall in Times Square.  To me those were the best New Years Eve celebrations ever. 

I loved being with my children and enjoying our nibbles.  We would have potato chips and dips, maybe some chicken wings.  Meatballs, and small sandwiches, Prawn rings, and all sorts of yummy bits. One of my favourite things to make would either be Spinach Dip in a loaf, or this fabulously tasty Gooey Tear & Share Cheese Bread.

One thing that's really nice about this Tear & Share Cheesy Bread is that the bread itself is the bowl for the dip. (Much like Spinach Dip.) I uses fairly simple ingredients and I could often use cheese that was leftover from Christmas.

Camembert cheese, and soft goats cheesem both which melt beautifully.  I usually like to use a round loaf to hold the dip and make up the picky dipping bits, but this year I could only get an oval. No mind, it tastes the same no matter the shape!

Gooey Tear & Share Cheesy Bread

The loaf gets hollowed out in the middle to make a "bowl" for the melted cheese. Make sure you save the bits you hollow out for dipping. You then cut the remainder of the loaf into one inch cuts, ready to pluck out and dip into the melted cheese as well.
You make a lovely garlic and herb oil which gets brushed all over the loaf before you bake it. It has just the right amount of green herbiness and pungency from the garlic. I use rosemary, but you can use whichever herbs float your boat. Just make sure he flavours go well with the cheese.

The cheese gets cubed and put into the centre "bowl" of the bread and then you cover the whole thing lightly with foil. It is then baked in the oven until the bread toasts and warms through, all of that lovely herby oil crisping it up in places.

The cheese gets all melty and gooey. You don't have to use the cheeses I have suggested. Its your choice. You can use any combination of melty cheese that you enjoy. I can tell you that reblochon is nice as is Swiss.  Just make sure it is a cheese with great melting properties.

A bit of flaked sea salt on the surface decorates it in a really nice way. Like little diamonds or jewels, also adding flavour.  Once this is ready all you have to do is sit back and watch your family and or friends enjoy it. 

Its so much fun and a great conversation piece. Not dissimilar to the fondu parties of the 19 60's and 70's where we all gathered around molten pots of cheese with bread to dip, or hot fat with pieces of chicken, etc. to fry.

You just can't beat the simplicity of this, or the taste. Its a fabulously party appetiser, whether you be many or a few. You can adapt it to smaller groups by using smaller loaves of bread.

You can even make individual ones (if you are really germ phobic) by using individual crusty rolls, which is really a lot of fun also.  Whatever you choose to do, one thing is for certain, this is sure to make for a really appetising and delicious part of your New Year's Celebrations!

Wishing a really Happy New Year to all! May your 2021 be happy and blessed and filled with peace, comfort and joy. Here's hoping it is a good year to us all!

Tear & Share Cheesy Bread

Tear & Share Cheesy Bread

Yield: Variable
Author: Marie Rayner
prep time: 10 Mincook time: 25 Mintotal time: 35 Min
This delicious appetiser is simple to make, ready in minutes and delicious!


  • 9 ounce (255g) round of Camembert Cheese
  • 3 1/2 (100g) ounce round of goats cheese
  • 1 (1 pound) loaf of Italian or Sour Dough bread, unsliced (a round loaf is best)
  • 1 fat clove of garlic, peeled
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves stripped from stalk
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt flakes
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Have ready a large baking sheet, lined with foil and buttered.
  2. Trim any rind from the cheese and discard. Chop the remaining cheese roughly.
  3. Hollow out a round roughly 4 1/2 inches across and 1 1/2 inches deep in centre of the loaf of bread. (This  becomes a receptacle for the melted cheese.)
  4. Cut the remaining loaf into a cross hatch pattern, cutting almost all the way to the bottom, and spacing the cuts 1-inch apart.
  5. Finely chop the garlic and rosemary leaves.
  6. Whisk the rosemary, garlic, black pepper to taste and oil together in a bowl.  Brush this all over the loaf, making sure that you get it down into the cuts as much as possible.
  7. Put the chopped cheese in the centre hollowed out area.  Sprinkle flakes of sea salt over all. Cover loosely with foil.
  8. Place onto the baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes until golden brown and the cheese has melted and is bubbling.
  9. Serve  hot.
  10. People can pull off pieces of the bread to dip into the cheese.
Did you make this recipe?
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This content (written and photography) is the sole property of The English Kitchen. Any reposting or misuse is not permitted. If you are reading this elsewhere, please know that it is stolen content and you may report it to me at: mariealicejoan at aol dot com Thanks so much for visiting. Do come again! 

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Marie Rayner
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Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta (small batch)

  Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta

This tasty pasta recipe I am sharing with you today makes for an excellent mid-week supper.  I am in the process of down-sizing a lot of my recipes, so this is a small batch recipe and feeds two people generously.  
If you are just one, you will have one serving to eat now and one serving to freeze for later on!  Many of us are having to survive in limited circumstances at the moment, without having a lot of others around to feed. Recipes that just feed one or two are certainly going to come in very handy. 

Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta 

You can also certainly double or triple any recipe to serve more if you wish. I try to always share recipes that are very "cook" and family-friendly, using simple ingredients and methods, so they are easily adaptable to many tastes and needs. 

This recipe I am sharing today uses very simple ingredients. Italian sausage, marinara sauce, onions, garlic, Pesto, spinach, cheeseand pasta.  There is nothing too out of the ordinary at all. Generally speaking I will always have most of these ingredients in my store-cupboard.

You can certainly make your own Marinara sauce for this, but a good bottled one works very well. Just buy the best one you can afford to buy. There are some really great ones out there.

Its a bit of a cheat using jarred marinara sauce, but it does make for quite a time saving.  If you use a really good quality one however, it won't really matter.

I like to use sweet Italian Sausage, but that is a personal preference. Feel free to use a hot Italian Sausage if you wish. In the UK I used to pick up my Italian Sausage at Costco. They had some lovely ones.

I have not sourced it here in Middleton yet, but I think that you can buy it in most of the Grocery stores. I live in a really small town at the moment, so I have only a few places to choose from. In larger urban centres you will be literally spoilt for choice!

When I was growing up my mother used to make us Spaghetti Bolognese once a week just about every week. It consisted of her browning a pound of ground beef and adding a can of Catelli Spaghetti Sauce.  That was Italian to her! 

I wasn't very fond of the meat in the sauce, so she used to save out a spoonful of the sauce for me without meat in it. That's a mother's love for you. It is limitless and without judgment! 

For this sauce you just remove the skins from the sausage and crumble it into a skillet. (Its really easy to take it out of the casings.  Just slip a sharp knife into the casing to make a cut and slip it right off.)Add the onions and garlic and brown it all together. 

Once you have everything browned off you can add your marinara sauce. I used the President's Choice Marinara Sauce from the Atlantic Super Store. Their products are usually quite good. I recommend Lloyd Grosman Tomato and Basil sauce if you are in the UK.

You let it all simmer for about 15 minutes and by that time it should be nice and thick. You are going to stir some Basil Pesto into it for even more flavour. 

I used to like making my own Basil Pesto when I was in the UK.  I am still finding my feet over here in Canada, so just use whatever brand of Pesto that you like to use. 

Once I get into my own place I plan on growing my own Basil if possible. I would like to have a little window sil herb garden.

I just need to source a good place to buy seeds from. Any recommendations?  I am flying in the dark here. 

Once you have the sauce made, all you need to do is to combine it with your cooked pasta, the cheese and fresh spinach. I adore fresh spinach in bakes like this. If they are very long, I always remove the stems. If short, I leave as is.

I also always use whole wheat or smart pasta if possible. Its just healthier and to be honest, I can't really tell the difference, especially in a bake like this. 

Every bit of extra fibre helps!  I try to pack it into my diet wherever I can. Funny how when you are young, you don't really think about things like that. I didn't at any rate.

Now I am older and have more years behind me than ahead of me, I think about things like fibre and fat. And sugar. I try to do my best when I can. 

Don't we all! Youth is wasted on the young. If I had known then what I know now, I might have done a lot of things differently, especially diet wise, but alas I did not. All I can do is the best that I can now.

I like to reserve a bit of cheese to sprinkle on top after I spoon everything into the casserole dish.  A bit of cheese on top always goes down a real treat.

The casserole I used for this was a small pyrex one. It was about 7 inches square and two inches deep. It was just the perfect size for this.

The flavours in this are spot on and so delicious.  I adore casseroles like this. Simple to throw together and using simple ingredients. 

They make the perfect midweek supper for those nights when you are not feeling truly inspired but you still want to put a tasty meal on the table. NO fuss and NO faff spells winner to me!

Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta

This is one dish that has a lot going for it flavourwise!  Well everyway-wise really. Quick, easy and delicious works for me every time, and when I can manage that pint sized, even better!

All you need for this is a salad on the side. The glutton in me always loves a bit of garlic bread with it as well, but an ordinary crusty loaf or roll also goes very well!

Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta

Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta
Yield: Serves 2
Author: Marie Rayner
prep time: 20 Mincook time: 30 Mintotal time: 50 Min
I cheat a bit with this by using a good jarred marinara sauce, but I think you will agree that this dish is fabulously tasty! Quick, easy and delicious! You can easily double to serve 4. It also freezes well.


For the Sauce:
  • splash of olive oil
  • 1/2 pound Italian sausage links, casings removed and discarded
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  •   2 small cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 (26 ounce/730g) jars/carton of good marinara sauce
  •   3TBS of good Basil Pesto
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
You will also need:
  • 1/2 pound (225g) penne pasta, uncooked
  • 4 ounces (115g) of finely diced or grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup (90g grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 3 ounces (85g) baby spinach leaves 


  1. Heat a large heavy bottomed pan over medium high heat. Add a small splash of olive oil, then crumble in the sausage meat. Cook, breaking up with a spoon, until the sausage is evenly browned and no pink remains.
  2. Add the onion and saute for about 5 minutes longer. Add the garlic, cook for 1 minute and then add the marinara sauce. Reduce the heat to medium.
  3. Simmer for about 10 minutes, then stir in the pesto, salt and pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste. Set aside.
  4. Cook the pasta according to package directions in a large pot of lightly salted water. Drain well.
  5. Preheat the oven to 190*C/375*F/ gas mark 6. Butter a 9 by 13 inch baking dish. Spoon a thin layer of sauce over the bottom of the dish.
  6. Combine the pasta with the remaining sauce, the spinach leaves (I like to try to pick off and discard any large stems), the mozzarella cheese, and 60g of the Parmesan cheese (1/3 cup) Mix well to combine and then spoon into the prepped casserole dish. Scatter the remaining Parmesan cheese over top.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes, until the casserole begins to bubble and the cheese is golden. Serve hot.
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @marierayner5530 on instagram and hashtag it #EnglishKitchen
Spicy Tomato & Sausage Pasta

This content (written and photography) is the sole property of The English Kitchen. Any reposting or misuse is not permitted. If you are reading this elsewhere, please know that it is stolen content and you may report it to me at: mariealicejoan at aol dot com Thanks so much for visiting. Do come again! 

  Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Marie Rayner
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Quick Naan Bread Pizzas

Here we are in that no-man's land between Christmas and New Years. Some of us have exhausted our desire for turkey sandwiches and what-not.  We are trying to recoup our energy before preparing to cook our New Years Feast.

These are the days when we are not necessarily wanting to expend a lot of energy on preparing meals. We just want to catch our breaths before the next onslaught! Most of us will have had smaller than normal Christmas celebrations this year.

But small or not, they will have required a lot of time, effort and planning to produce. It takes just as much time and energy to produce a meal for one or two as it does for four, six or more people.  Its just cooking on a smaller scale, but  not necessarily less work.

If you are like me, you have a healthy store cupboard and these few days in between the Christmas leftovers and the New Years preparations are the perfect time to avail yourself of some of the convenience contained within! 

It is surprising just how delicious a meal you can produce with a very few ingredients put together in a delicious way. One of those fab and tasty creations are Naan Bread Pizzas!! 

Naan Bread is a flat yeasted bread which hails from the North of India.  Similar in appearance and texture to Pita bread, it comes in a variety of flavours. You can get them in a large size, ready to be torn up or you can get them in smaller sizes as well. 

For these pizzas I like to use the plain ones, which are simply flavoured with garlic.  They are shaped like a tear drop and are roughly the size of your hand.
They are baked on top of the stove on a flat grill or skillet here, but in India they would be baked in a Tandoor oven. They are incredibly convenient to use as a quick and easy pizza crust, much like a Pita bread would be. 

You will also need a nice melty type of cheese. Mozzarella is the normal cheese that is used on Pizzas and is known for its ooze factor. You can use any cheese you like or a combination of cheeses. I love fontina cheese, or Gouda.

You don't need a sauce for the Naan Bread pizzas, but you will want a nice layer of melty cheese to grab your toppings and form a nice flavour base.  You can get as wild as you want with this or keep  it simple. Its all a matter of taste and choice.

I always like to keep a variety of olives in my store cupboard. I adore olives. They come in very handy for using in salads, sauces, etc.  And . . . they are wonderful on Pizzas.

In the UK I used to be able to get foil packs of dried and seasoned olives in both the green and the black variety.  They would sometimes be seasoned with garlic and herbs.  They were perfect for use on pizzas.  
I would simply tear them up and scatter them over top. I am sure going to miss them. I haven't been able to find them here yet, but I maybe am just not looking in the right places.

Marinated Artichoke Hearts

Another ingredient I aways keep in my larder are marinated artichoke hearts.  They are such a versatile ingredient. I use them to make Artichoke Chicken and a fantastic Artichoke Dip which is really great when you are entertaining.
But they are also fantastic to use as a pizza topping. I like the marinated one because they have plenty of flavour, but you can also use plain tinned ones as well. Both are very good.

I tend to use the oil marinated ones, which is naughty I know.  That marinade oil has lots of flavour in it however and is perfect brushed over the Naan breads before you top them with anything else.

It is also very delicious drizzled over top of the finished pizza, again, adding flavour.  They are usually marinated in olive oil with garlic and herbs.  Delicious! I don't like to waste anything.

Today I have kept the toppings very simple.  You can go crazy with toppings however. Adding some chopped pepperoni, or ham.  Pineapple even, if you are so inclined.

Other good add ons are chopped onion or mushrooms, or both. I like red onions because of their colour and mild flavour. Spring onion is also very nice. Today I added some fresh thyme leaves.

One thing I always, ALWAYS add to my pizzas is Parmesan Cheese. Its a lovely dry and hard cheese that packs plenty of punch. You don't need a lot of it to add flavour to anything. It is the dieter's friend in that way.  

You get the flavour of the cheese without needing a lot of it. I cannot imagine not liking Parmesan Cheese. It is one thing I would never be without if I could help it. Its great on pastas and in salads as well.  
I always save the rinds which I throw into soups and sauces when I am making them. They add unimaginable flavour to these things. Never ever throw the rinds away!

These are just my suggestions for topping these quick and easy pizzas. You can of course adapt the idea to incorporate your own favourite toppings as and how you wish.

I always make a salad to serve with these, and with the nice bagged salads on offer these days, even that need not take a great deal of effort to execute.  And there you have it, a delicious supper for the family that everyone is sure to love! 

With minimum fuss, and minimum muss. Little to clean up and yet still incredibly edibly pleasing to everyone involved! The perfect catch-your-breath meal!

Quick Naan Bread Pizzas

Quick Naan Bread Pizzas
Yield: 4
Author: Marie Rayner
prep time: 10 Mincook time: 10 Mintotal time: 20 Min
These make for a quick and easy midweek supper. Perfect for when you are just exhausted and can't be asked! They are delicious, simple to make and use store cupboard ingredients. You can also make as many or as few as you want.


  • 2 cups (280g jar) of quartered artichoke hearts, marinated in olive oil,
  • 4 small individual Naan breads (I like the plain ones with garlic)
  • 12 ounces (350g) sliced Taleggio Cheese (Dutch Gouda is a good substitute)
  • 2 cups (400g) pimento stuffed green olives
  • 4 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 4 heaped TBS frshly grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 heaped TBS of chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F gas mark 6. Have ready a large baking tray.
  2. Drain the artichokes, reserving the oil.
  3. Place the naan breads onto a large baking tray.  Brush with a bit of reserved artichoke oil.  Divide the Taleggio cheese between the breads.
  4. Top the cheese with the drained artichoke quarters, the olives and the thyme leaves. 
  5. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese evenly over top.  Dust with a bit of sea salt and lots of black pepper. (Remember that the olives and artichokes will probably be quite salty)
  6. Drizzle a bit more of the artichoke oil over top.
  7. Bake for about 10 minutes in the heated oven, until the cheese is bubbling and the naan are golden brown at the edges. 
  8. Sprinkle with some of the chopped parsley and serve hot.
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @marierayner5530 on instagram and hashtag it #EnglishKitchen

Quick Naan Bread Pizzas


This content (written and photography) is the sole property of The English Kitchen. Any reposting or misuse is not permitted. If you are reading this elsewhere, please know that it is stolen content and you may report it to me at: mariealicejoan at aol dot com Thanks so much for visiting. Do come again! 

  Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Marie Rayner
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Turkey Mulligatawny Soup

One thing that mom always mad after the holidays was soup.  If there was a leftover bone or carcass or meat from anything, one thing we could count on was a big pot of soup.  

We loved mom's soups. They were hearty and delicious. I used to make soup a lot when my children were growing up as well.  My ex husband called it Stewp because he felt they were like a cross between a soup and a stew.

We have never gone in for really thin soups. Broth with just a few bits in it. We like soup with substance. It doesn't have to be thick and creamy. It just has to be hearty. 

I had one child who hated soups of any kind.  Amanda. She used to moan and groan everytime.  I guess you can't please them all. 

We used to be so happy when my mother made a nice pot of homemade soup. It was something we really looked forward to, even after we grew up.  We could rely on mom having a pot of her homemade soup in the freezer ready to drag out and warm up for us.

One of my favourite memories was when I was first living out on my own after my second marriage fell apart. I came down with pneumonia and she brought me some of her nice homemade soup. It made me feel better even if I wasn't better. Mom's and soup.  Two good things.

A good soup always begins with a good stock.  I always take my carcasses and put them into a pot to make into stock as soon as possible  after cleaning of the carcass.  Roasted bones make the best stock, so if you have time try to roast them in a stove top to oven casserole if you can first. 

Once you have done that, you can add a quantity of cold water and some aromatics such as celery (include some of the leaves), onions, carrots, garlic, and parsley, along with some salt, a broken bay leaf and a small handful of peppercorns. You can add some other herbs as well if you like. Summer savoury is awfully good in poultry stock.

Just bring it to the boil, then reduce, cover and simmer for a couple of hours.  At the end of that time it should be well flavoured, having leached plenty of flavour from the bones and any meat that might have still been clinging to them.  (I always like to leave a little bit.)

I usually place a colander over a clean saucepan and strain all the bones and aromatics out at that point. You can just discard all of that. If you refrigerate it any fat in the stock will harden and it will be easier for you to skim it off and discard.

Mom never bothered. She left all fat in the soup.  I can remember asking her what those glossy beads on top were and her telling me they were vitamins, lol. God bless her. We never minded.

Nowadays we are a bit more health conscious however, so do skim it off and discard. You can then pack it into individual containers ready to freeze so that you have a container of fresh stock ready to use whenever you want to make a pot of soup.

Mom never made fancy soups.  After Thanksgiving and Christmas you would get turkey soup.  After a roast chicken, chicken soup. After New Years and Easter, Pea soup, and if she had beef bones you got beef/vegetable soup.

There was no variance.  It didn't matter we loved them all. You can't beat old fashioned simplicity for comfort.

One soup I like to make wih some of th stock is this delicious Turkey Mulligatawny Soup. It is rich and delicious with an abundance of East Indian/Asian flavours and filled with meaty chunks of turkey, plenty of vegetables and rice. 

There is a gentle hit of  heat and spice from the use of curry powder and a touch of sweetness (which goes well with curry) by using a fresh apple, chopped. Altogether, its a very hearty, delicious and satisfying soup.

More heartiness is added by ladling the hot soup over cooked rice in the soup bowls. You could of course cook the rice right in the soup, but I prefer the texture of it done this way. As well, if you have someone who doesn't like rice, they don't have to have rice! 

This is delicious served with warm mini naan breads. I love the fruity Peshwari naan, myself, but regular crackers, poppadoms or dinner rolls also go very well.  Enjoy!

Turkey Mulligatawny Soup

Turkey Mulligatawny Soup
Yield: 4
Author: Marie Rayner
prep time: 10 Mincook time: 30 Mintotal time: 40 Min
A quick and delicious soup with an asian flair created to make the most of your leftover cooked poultry. You use cooked turkey meat in this, which makes it perfect for this time of year. You can also use cooked chicken.


  • 1 TBS vegetable oil
  • 1 eating apple, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped coarsely
  • 1 stalk of celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, trimmed, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 TBS wholemeal or plain flour
  • 1 tsp curry powder (I use medium)
  • 1/2 tsp dry mustard powder
  • 5 1/2 cups (1 1/4 litre) of well flavoured chicken or turkey stock
  • 3 cups (400g) of boneless, skinless cooked turkey, cut into bite sized pieces
  • fine sea salt and coarse black pepper to taste
  • Cooked rice to serve (I like brown basamati)
  • Chopped parsley to garnish


  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan. Add the apple, carots, celery, onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, over low heat until the vegetables have begun to soften.
  2. Mix together the flour, curry powder, and mustard powder. Sprinkle this over the vegetables. Cook and stir for several minutes.
  3. Add the stock slowly so as to prevent any lumps. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook, uncoverd for 20 to 25 minutes, until the vegetables are completely softened and the apple has begun to break down.
  4. Stir in the turkey and heat through. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  5. Place a portion of hot cooked rice into each of 4 heated bowls. Ladle the hot soup over and sprinkle with parsley. Serve immediately. Delicious!!
Did you make this recipe?
Tag @marierayner5530 on instagram and hashtag it #EnglishKitchen
Turkey Mulligatawny Soup

This content (written and photography) is the sole property of The English Kitchen. Any reposting or misuse is not permitted. If you are reading this elsewhere, please know that it is stolen content and you may report it to me at: mariealicejoan at aol dot com Thanks so much for visiting. Do come again! 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Marie Rayner
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