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My Diary For 2023

Every year I write a blog post about which diary system or set up I am going to use for the following twelve months. In recent years, I have moved away from a Filofax (I trialled something earlier this year - more of that in a minute) and fallen in love with the Hobonichi printed diaries. For the last two years I have used a Hobonichi Weeks as my personal planner and I won't be deviating from that this year. I have tried a Hobonichi Techo A6 a couple of times but have never managed to feel comfortable with it size-wise.  I have always lusted after the Hobonichi Cousin A5 as a main work planner so, this year, I have bitten the bullet at launch time and invested in my very first one. Hobonichi Weeks The Hobonichi Weeks is a slim diary with a yearly, monthly and weekly layout. The main section is a "week to view with notes" and there are an additional 70 note pages at the back. This year (2022) I used the "Mega" version which comes with almost three times as m

RECIPE : Cherry Cookies

I fancied baking something this week and got out my trusty recipe book but then realised that I hadn't got quite the right ingredients in to make some cookies.  In for a penny, in for a pound, I replaced some of the ingredients and hoped for the best.  My 14 year old chief taster has pronounced them "not bad really" which is high praise indeed.  I love the rustic look of them too so here is the recipe for you to try this weekend. This recipe makes about 12 cookies.

Recipe - Cherry Cookies -


  • 125g butter or margarine
  • 75g of brown sugar
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence
  • 125g of self-raising flour
  • 15 glace cherries (chopped into small pieces)
  • Large baking tray covered with a layer of baking paper.


Recipe - Cherry Cookies -
  1. Preheat the oven to 180F/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Beat the butter/margarine, sugar and vanilla essence until soft.
  3. Sift in the flour and mix well.
  4. Add in the chopped cherries and mix again until the mixture forms a soft dough.  It will be slightly sticky
  5. Wrap the sticky dough in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for about half an hour
  6. After chilling (you and the dough) open the clingfilm and break off small pieces of the dough (about the size of a walnut).  Roll these into a ball and place on the baking paper and squash slightly.  Make sure you leave plenty of room between each dough ball as they will spread during baking.  You should be able to make about 12 dough balls.
  7. Bake in the oven for about 15-20 minutes.
  8. Leave to cool for a few minutes on the tray after removing them from the oven and then let them fully cool on a wire rack. 
  9. Store in an airtight container if you have any left after the initial tasting.

Top Tips

  • I have a silicone spatula. It only cost a couple of pounds but is invaluable when I'm baking. It beats the sugar and butter brilliantly and scrapes the bowl perfectly.  It is really worth investing in one.
  • Wet your hands before rolling the small pieces of dough to stop it from sticking to your hands.
  • You can replace the cherries with dried fruit such as raisins.  Let me know if you experiment yourself.