Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Movie review

On Saturday night we went for a Curry and then to the flicks. We went to see this movie. It was very good I thought - and would happily give it a score of 8 out of 10. Clint plays a cantankerous somewhat racist (due to his memories of the Korean war) old man whose neighbourhood has become increasingly ethnic of late. He reluctantly makes friends with the family next door - and then goes on to teach their youngest boy some life lessons.

The ending is very good and made me cry (I blubber at the drop of a hat!). I would recommend it. Nobody does grumpy as well as Clint.

Succumbed

Our little world in Banbury is a world of re-cycling. We have re-cycling bins and boxes for bottles (green, brown and clear glass) - we re-cycle cardboard and paper - and Posselq has hessian carrier bags from Tesco which live in the boot of his car. I, however, am about as far removed from being an eco-warrier as it is possible to be.

Today - that has all changed. I was in the checkout queue and the lady in front of me picked up two of the Green shopping bags - "What a good idea!" I thought and proceeded to buy three of them. They are very good and have pockets for bottles (oh for goodness sake - get a grip) and are very roomy - so roomy in fact that a £65 shop fitted nicely into two of them with room to spare.

I am not about to swap my diesel truck for anything eco-friendly any time soon - but I think that so far I'm doing really well. One step at a time.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

What's in a name?

Earlier in the week I wrote about our bathroom at home when I was a girl. I stated that the toilet was invented by Thomas Crapper. I was, in fact, wrong!!! ~(Never?)~ Thomas Crapper actually invented the ball-cock and the syphoning system which is used to flush the toilet. This led to finding an article about people whose names reflect the job they do and whether we are influenced in our choice of careers by our given name. You can read the article here. The theory is called Nominative Determinism. Names originally derived from our trades - so historically you get Smith (from blacksmith) Wright (from wheelwright) and so on.

My name is Wood - so perhaps I should be a joiner!!! Here's some other suggestions and examples......"Dick"(!), "Splatt and Weedon" - 2 Doctors who wrote about incontinence in the British Journal of Medicine (I kid you not), a gynaecologist called Dr. Beaver (honestly), Mr. Bun the Baker.......(sorry) and then the infamous Mr Scheister who is a lawyer!!!

Personally I would like to meet Mr. Pex, Mr. Large, and of course my favourite Mr. Wypmitileyeblede. (Say it quickly) :)


Yum Yum


I have just (as I do every year at this time) re-discovered Hot Cross Buns. I love them and have just eaten two with lots of butter on them. The nicest butter (I think) is Lurpak. Not that keen on Anchor - it's too yellow for me!

A question for the horsey girls....

...Why are bloody hay splinters the most painful thing ever? I have two and they're so small that I can't even see them - but Oh Goodness I can sure as hell feel them. They nestle undetected in the pads of your fingers - and then you momentarily put a bit of pressure on a finger and hey presto - almost reduced to tears with the shock and sharpness of the pain (am I being a bit wimpy here? - I think not as I am usually somebody who can stoically cope with any level of pain that life throws at me...it's a girl thing) !!

Now I am gearing up to being a concert pianist (!) I need to take extra special care of my fingers - and hay splinters are not helping.

I'm now going to dig away at my fingers (there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth) with a sharp needle in an attempt to wheedle them out :(

Posselq is home tonight - so I will be expecting sympathy.

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Piano Lessons - Episode two

Yesterday I had my second Piano lesson. After a few hours of practice - and some hints and tips from Martin it's kind of starting to come together and make more sense. Turns out he knows Nikki Lambourn who used to be my singing (warbling) teacher, and has played at the Albert Hall when she was singing...small world?

Anyway - Posselq wanted to listen to me playing yesterday - but we're not ready for any kind of audience yet (who would want to listen to three bars of 'Clare de Lune' played badly - anyway?) I can do a half decent rendition of 'God Save the Queen' but luckily - I haven't found a way of posting music on here yet - so for now - you're all safe. 

I've got another four tunes to learn for next week and two of them have F sharp in them (that's one of the black notes apparently!)

I also had to pick up a music stand for Posselq's daughter - and I have to say that the staff in the music shop here in Banbury are amongst some of the nicest people I've ever met! The young man who came to set up the Piano here at the house last week was lovely - his Mother must be so very proud.

Ways with Coat Hangers

When you get to a certain age you're allowed certain peculiarities. You can be anally retentive about certain things and it's okay. I am - about quite a few things as it happens - (socks not being balled up as a pair but - no - ironed and laying flat in the drawer as if they were new is one of mine) but I have NEVER been bothered about coat hangers. I don't particularly like wire ones because they aren't the right shape for my clothes - but I have used them in the past in an emergency and it's not something I would lose sleep over.

Posselq is - however - bothered about coat hangers. Really bothered in fact. He has coloured coat hangers - in two colours. And there are two distinctive types. One for trousers, and one for shirts. He has explained to me the reasoning behind his foible, and the differences between the two types- but I wasn't listening properly and so forgot! I bought him some new coat hangers from Tesco a few weeks ago - only to be told they were the wrong type (!) I thought I had got it right - but clearly not!!!

Yesterday he had to (patiently) explain it to me again - this time making sure I totally got it!...and I have now totally got it. He also likes his shirts hung a certain way round in the wardrobe - the reasoning?.......well, it's so he can just pluck the shirts off the rail and put them straight into his suit carrier and they are all facing the same way. I kind of get that too - as that's the sort of organisation I feel comfortable with.

I promise never to put the wrong garment on the wrong coat hanger again....or hang the shirt on the hanger the wrong way.......(For goodness sake - how many times do you need telling?!!!!)

.......This makes him sound like some kind of nutter - he isn't - honestly - he just likes certain things done in a certain way.....and just for the record he hasn't said anything like that to me - all he has done is ask me very nicely if I could find my way to doing it like that!!! (has probably worked out by now that if he got cross about it and then shouted he would probably end up buried beneath the lovely york stone patio!)

Living with someone and learning all about what they like and dislike is fun...isn't it?


Monday, 23 March 2009

NFU

I'm a bit annoyed with NFU today. They have been happily taking insurance premiums from me for some time - and I am in the process of making a claim for Rupert's recent surgery. Last week I got an 'Outstanding Debt' letter from the Vet so the claim clearly hasn't been paid. I 'phoned NFU on Thursday about this and they promised me a call back on Friday. They never did. (surprised?). When I called this morning I was told by a young lady (?) that I clearly had no idea how busy they were??????  It's a good job I couldn't reach her or I would have pulled her head off her shoulders! I asked to speak to her supervisor - she put me on hold - Mantovani -la di dah di dah.......... came back 9 minutes later to tell me that the Supervisor was in a meeting but the reason the claim hasn't been paid its because they are waiting for some info from the vet. I called the Vet only to be told that they have had no request for info and apparently NFU do this all the time - it's called 'fobbing off'!!! Fan-tas-tic.

Eventually I called the broker who sold me the policy and asked/told him to get this sorted out in double quick time :)

It will be interesting to see what happens next.

So - for now NFU stands for "No F*******g  Useful" person working there. :)

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Shall we have a vote?

Posselq is coming home tonight. He'll find a clean house, a cooked dinner (that's if you can call home-made quiche a proper dinner! - A man needs a proper dinner after a full day's work) all the ironing and laundry is done....and me...a proper little Stepford wife (have you seen that movie?) with make-up on and dressed to kill.

In another few months I will be sitting here playing the piano as he walks through the door - ha ha ha!!! Probably dressed up like a french maid or a schoolgirl with a whip in each hand too I shouldn't wonder.... (Cook in the kitchen - whore in the bedroom?). The dog will be freshly washed and fed, the horse ridden and retired, the lawn mowed, that car washed, the fridge full of freshly baked stuff, and of course - the freezer full of soups and stews.and so on and so forth. 

Actually - thinking about it what will probably happen (and I'm only saying this before Christian gets the chance) is that I will be asleep on the sofa in a pair of old jogging bottoms, Domino will be on their way with a delivery, the fridge and freezer will be empty and so will the gin bottle. The laundry will be stinking in the dirty linen basket, the garden will resemble a vietnamese rice field, the dog will have left home, the horse will be in a random field somewhere, the car will have been impounded and the piano - well - the piano will have been used for firewood.

Shall we have a vote as to which scenario is more likely? Stepford wife - or council house wife?




Wednesday, 18 March 2009

More from a Domestic Goddess....

This morning whilst doing my dutiful domestic Goddess tasks of ironing the Posselq's shirts - the iron exploded. Well, that's a bit of an exaggeration really - (I wouldn't want you to think that my life is in any way hazardous) but it kind of went 'bang' and then stopped working. I tried replacing the fuse - but - alas - no joy!

Off I went to Comet to replace the iron. Now - Posselq's iron was probably purchased by a man. I say that because it's a "Bosch". I know Bosch as a brand of manly tools like drills and hedge cutters and the like - not really known for making domestic appliances that would please a Goddess such as I.

I have to say that the Bosch iron never really did the job to my standards (army trained!). I wouldn't want to cut the grass with anything made by Braun, and I'm sure that a Philips Iron will be better than a Bosch one - it just kind of makes sense to me.


Update - have just ironed a quilt cover with the new Philips Iron - and it has done the job a treat!!!

Oh For goodness sake - will somebody please pour me a very large gin :)

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

The inquisition of 1970

Memories of when I was young include the Great T**d Mystery. I've just been chatting to Posselq on the 'phone and laughing about this one. My Father was a plumber, and therefore must have thought that the bathroom and toilet at our house were his personal domain. With five people living there - occasionally things were bound to go wrong. When they did - we would have the Spanish Inquisition (or a Sheffield version of it...any road 'up).

One day - somebody (and we never found out who) left a 'floater'. Now I'm sure this has happened to everyone of us at some point. 

When my dad came home and saw this offending missile lurking in the porcelain - he had a bit of a hissy and shouted us all to gather round. Then - the questioning began........."Was it you?" came the stern and accusatory voice.....we were all trembling with trepidation and fear at being the one who was responsible for such a crime against bathroom fittings.  (Did you know that the man who invented the flushing toilet was called Thomas Crapper?). Wondering, as always what the punishment would be for such a henious offence. 

It was totally ridiculous that a grown man would hold such an inquest into a floating t**d - almost as if one of us had done the deed on purpose to annoy him!!!

Nowadays we all laugh hysterically at the memory of the "Great T**d inqusition of 1970" but at the time it was quite traumatic. 

It's funny how childhood incidents can affect you well into adult life - I still have a morbid fear of leaving a 'floater' and always double check that whatever I have left has fully disappeared before I leave the bathroom!!!

What rhymes with purple?

I'm English and therefore I crave disappointment !

I love Bill Bailey - and this is very funny :)

Smoking news

Well - we have patches - but we're a bit short on willpower and determination. I have been smoking since I was 13 - so thats.....too many years to count.  I am totally and utterly addicted to the bad drug Nic-O-Tine. Yesterday Posselq came home from work early and caught me with a packet of the evil weed in the kitchen. I regressed to a 13 year old (remember when your Mum caught you red handed with something you shouldn't have - the stammering - the sweating - the fibbing?) Can you imagine a grown (?) woman trying to walk backwards to the rubbish bin with a packet of fags hidden behind her back - trying all the while to look normal and carry out a conversation - Oh my goodness - feel the shame. It would be quite funny if it wasn't so woefully pathetic!

So we're trying again today. Posselq stuck my patch on before he left for work at 6.30 this morning. How kind! So far so good :)

Piano fun

I never ever thought I would be posting photographs of food on here - or writing about cooking. Somebody please pass me a large bottle of gin...this is getting ridiculous!

Yesterday I had my first piano lesson. It was really great. My teacher is called Martin and he was very funny. He told me that I was very good - and has suggested I start on book 2 of the text book series as I am too advanced to begin on book 1 - yeah baby! Today I am going to do an hour's practice. (Hmmmm - not entirely sure if that is the correct spelling - is it practice or practise?)

He has given me four short tunes - and I am going to wow him next week by knowing them all off by heart. I have to play with both hands too - Oh crikey!!! 

Fortunately for the neighbours here in sleepy rural Oxfordshire (shhhh) the piano has headphones.

Burgundian Braised Pork with Borlotti Beans

This is what I (with the help of Delia) created for dinner last night. It doesn't look that great - but - trust me - it was very nice! I'm not big on pulses and weird stuff (it won't be a day too soon if I never eat couscous again) and it had Borlotti beans in it but it was very nice - so nice in fact that I'm having leftovers for lunch today! The mash potato was 'cheesy mash' - and the sauce had 3/4 of a bottle of red wine in it!!

Posselq scored it another ten out of ten.

Sunday, 15 March 2009

Weekend News

We've had a lovely weekend. Dan and Jan turned up on Friday night for a sleepover. I haven't seen errant daughter for  while - so that was lovely. Posselq cooked a lovely fish pie (better than I could have attempted - mind you I did my bit by doing the shopping - off I went with a list....).

We all watched 'Comic relief' on Friday night - the films about the kids in Africa always make me cry and this year was no exception. 

The new digital Piano arrived on Friday morning and I have my first lesson tomorrow lunchtime - I don't think Richard Clayderman needs to worry about the competition just yet - but give me time and I'll soon be rattling out some Rachmaninov :)

On Saturday after waving the kids off - we went to Solihull for a spot of retail therapy - after disappointment in John  Lewis (Customer service - shite!) over an exploding fountain pen - we experienced much joy clothes shopping. I was treated to a fabby dabby new leather jacket - and I bought a dress, a new jacket and a couple of scarves. Posselq got some new kitchen gadgets - including a do-it-yourself stirrer - seriously you just put it in the pan and it stirs for you - very 'Harry Potter'. 

Today we have had a leisurely day - one of the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal (apparently) is fatigue. I can confirm that as I fell asleep on the sofa while waiting for my omelette to be cooked at lunchtime. We did manage a trip to the tip to take the Christmas tree which has been lounging around in the back garden for the last ten weeks.

Posselq has just been out on his mountain bike for the first time since he broke his neck in Portugal last summer and had to have his head screwed back on!! Luckily he came back an hour later in one piece. (phew!) I was mentally preparing myself for a phone call from the head (that's the only bit that can speak) telling me that it had become unattached from the body and needed some assistance - but thankfully Posselq came back - head and body still together.

We're just about to have some dinner - and then it's back to Monday and the working week :)




Cooking...with chickpeas? (Have you gone mad?)


It's turned out that Christian and I have started learning to cook at about the same time. He's doing really well. I, too am doing okay. Last week I created a mouthwatering Moroccan Chicken with preserved lemons and Chickpeas. If you're interested in making it (it's very easy!) the recipe can be found on page 123 of Delia's 'How to Cheat at Cooking" book.

Posselq scored it a 10 out of ten.


Thursday, 12 March 2009

No more fags!


Okay - here we go again. This time I am determined to quit for good.

Jon Allen

Whilst ironing this morning (so many shirts - so little time) I was listening to Terry Wogan on good old Radio 2. He played this song which I loved. It's a guy called Jon Allen - totally new to me. The song will be available for download from I tunes on 16th March.

Terry Wogan is very good by the way - he also played Nickelback this morning!!

Cast-off clothing

Having had my colours done - I am now in need of  a complete new wardrobe - any excuse? I have culled my old clothes collection - there is no longer any brown in there. This resulted in five bin liners full of clothes - which I took to my Mum's the other day. She and Aunty Mimi had a field day - however they are both size 14/16 and it was mightily funny watching them both trying to squeeze themselves into my size 10 cast offs!!! With some garments they actually managed it - and we nearly had a 'handbags at dawn' incident over a couple of items (cream suede coat - and beautiful long cardigan from Monsoon which cost me the thick end of a ton and I've worn it once...grrrrrr)

However - they both got some delightful pieces to add to their already bulging wardrobes and I got a whole lot of wardrobe space - which now needs to be filled up again :)

Deliveries

This morning Shitty link have delivered 6 parcels. Vaughan (lovely driver - who is nice - not shitty...and over a cup of tea was regaling me with stories about his 24 year old girlfriend - he's about 55 ....way to go Vaughan) brought them all into the house for me. Five of them are the component parts to the new electronic drum kit for Posselq's daughter, and the sixth is a new bathroom cabinet. I'm not allowed to open the drum kit boxes (Posselq wants to be here when they are opened so he can share the fun - fair enough) - but I am allowed to open the new bathroom cabinet box. Ooooh - aren't I lucky? :)

The life of a domestic Goddess is never dull - later I'm off to buy a new ironing board cover!!! Woop di doo!

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Naked Bodies

I like this website that I found whilst browsing. Click on the photograph to see the person naked. I don't like it for the obvious reason - although I have no problem looking at nakedness per se - I just thought the diversity of body shapes was interesting and that everybody looks okay naked - which is a good thing - seeing as we always seem to be in pursuit of the 'perfect' body shape.

How annoying......how pleasing

....I wanted to post a photograph of the delicious dinner I cooked from Delia's 'How to cheat...' I cooked it on Monday - took a photograph - and now cannot find the connector cable for my camera. I had it just the other day. This meant a cyber trip to Amazon.co.uk to order another one. I just know that five minutes before the postman brings it later this week, the original will show up. Sod's law.

Also - I have a very annoying spot inside my ear. It's itchy and I can't quite reach it. Grrrr.

Also - today I had to go to the farm supplies shop to fetch shavings for Phoebe. My satnav took me to the wrong place - some country park in the middle of nowhere. There were sheep on the road and they simply wouldn't move. I waved my arms at them and everything - five minutes later they just meandered off. (Mint sauce...mint sauce!)

Also - I stubbed my toe on the vacuum cleaner (the life of a domestic goddess is never without high drama)..and it hurt...a lot

Also - I gave Millie a haircut and it went a bit wrong - all the other dogs will take the mickey out of her tomorrow :)

However - some very pleasing things have happened today too. I have booked some piano lessons, and Posselq called home to see me on his way from somewhere in Warwickshire (?) to Leeds this evening. I wasn't expecting him so it was a lovely surprise.

And - I bought a fabulous pillar box red jacket from Debenhams today. Pillar box red being one of my new 'colours'.

The balance of Yin and Yang has been restored.


Tuesday, 10 March 2009

I want to kill a pensioner

...just to see how much mess it would make?..and would that be a particular pensioner or would any random pensioner do?

I've been to Sheffield today for yet another funeral (Sheffield is one hell of a dangerous place to live it seems). After the service (very short 20 minutes - all done...when it's my turn I insist on at least an hour - please note) I went to my Mum's for a cuppa. I got Millie out of the car and took her to the grass to do her ablutions. She did a little poo - and being a responsible dog owner I always have a little poo bag in my pocket to collect little poos in.

Anyway there was a pensioner sitting in his car (don't know what he was waiting for - death perhaps?) and of course his car was sparkly clean and had the regulation folded picnic blanket on the back shelf. Just after Millie had done her deposit - and before I had the chance to scoop it up - he pipped his f*******g hooter at me and after winding down his window said 'I DO HOPE YOU'RE GOING TO PICK THAT UP'. He said it in a kind of interfering busybody 'rules are made to be adhered to' 'not in my back yard' 'too much time on his hands' pensioner way.

I nearly threw the dog poop straight at him - it would have flown in through his open window and splattered him right on the chin. And that would have been a result.

Oh - I was vexed.  I turned round and gave him the horrid cold - 'if I could stab you and get away with it I would' - look.....not good - not good at all. And then I came out with a very uber-cool retort....."Of course I am - you silly old duffer" I said. How's about that for uber-cool?

I really don't know what came over me :)

Monday, 9 March 2009

Colours

On Friday I had my colours done. Not my hair - no - but my colour analysis. We went to see one of these ladies and they do a full work-out on you.

The result is that I can still wear black (thank god for that) - but all the autumn shades I am used to wearing now have to go. Apparently I am a winter person - but with brightness. So that's lots of jewel shades.

It makes such a difference to how you look. It was also very emotional. At one point when she held a swatch of fabric up to my face I burst into tears. She got my personality type spot-on too - apparently I have larger than life personality!! I didn't know that :)

Colours I should avoid at all costs are browns, beiges, olive, etc etc - most of the colours in my wardrobe in fact.

This morning I have been to Debenhams and begun to replace my wardrobe contents. 

Music

Following on from my last post - and still following a musical theme - one of the things on my bucket list is learning to play the piano. I did try when Dan was small and bought a baby-grand piano which I had in my hall. But when the (male) piano teacher turned up drunk one night - declared his undying love for me and promptly chased me around said piano - I stopped having lessons (well - you would - wouldn't you - I mean - he drove a Lada - and it was yellow!). A few years later - times were hard and money was tight - so I flogged the baby grand for less than a grand to buy food and pay a leccy bill.

Posselq's son is musical (play's bass guitar very well and is in a band) and Posselq's daughter wants to learn to play the drums (which is a very cool activity for a girl), so on Saturday we went off to Banbury into a music shop and Posselq bought an electric piano. It's being delivered later this week - and I'm going to have lessons!!! I can't wait - there will be no singing however!!!

BAD Posselq !!! (and son)

The Posselq found some of my songs on i tunes. When I say 'my songs' I don't mean songs that I have written - no - I mean songs that I have sung - and recorded. Now, I'm not a good singer but a couple of years ago I took some lessons with this lady who is called Nikki Lambourn - (you may remember this song - La Bassey recorded it last year - fab!!! Listen to the whole song on itunes - it's very very good) However, I soon realised that singing wasn't really my thing - and therefore stopped before anyone got hurt :)

NOBODY listens to my recordings - apart from my Mum who has them on a CD - and she always cries - that's how bad they are. I like to sing - as anyone who knows me will testify - but I am not good at it - not good at all.

Now, Posselq and Posselq's teenage son decided it WOULD BE FUNNY to ferret through my I tunes and then burn a CD of my songs and play them in the car - note - without asking permission or telling me.

So - here's the scene - four of us in the car - headed to nearby tack shop to buy Posselq's daughter a riding hat. Posselq's son hands me a CD and asks me nicely to 'pop it into the player'. Because I AM NICE I duly did as I was asked. The intro music comes on and it's the intro to James Blunt's "You're Beautiful". Now, I really can't sing and my version of this particular track sounds like two cats being strangled. Like a complete tit I said "I really like this song - in fact it's one that I used to sing".

Imagine my horror, humiliation and shame - when my reedy little voice start to whistle its way out of the car speakers......I WAS MORTIFIED!!!

Of course - everybody else is laughing hysterically - because it's so funny to take the rise out of a sad middle aged woman who used to enjoy the odd warble.

Poor Posselq has severe bruising to his upper left arm where I beat him in the car. 

It was very, very funny - but I don't think I can ever forgive them.

Revenge will be mine :)

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Pie report

Well - I have to tell you - the Meat and Potato pie was a great success. Mistakes I made were...not letting the pastry 'rest' before I put it on top of the pie - therefore it shrunk a bit in the oven...but that was all. Oh yes - I didn't roast the squash for long enough so it wasn't ready and didn't get eaten - but I thought twenty minutes was long enough - oh no - it needs about 45. However, apart from that I got a score of 9 out of ten from the Poselq. He did say he would have given me ten - but then I might feel there was nowhere else to go after that :) But I'm impressed with myself for making my first ever Meat and Potato pie at the very young age of 45. My Mum is impressed anyway. It kind of begs the question of 'what have you been doing for the last 45 years if you've never even attempted a Meat and Potato Pie?' I'm not even going to attempt to answer that - suffice to say that Gin has featured heavily.

The blackberry and apple pie was okay - but something went wrong and the pastry was a bit soggy. I think I put the pie top on too early - it was made from about 2pm...in future I shall pop the pastry lid on just before it goes in the oven. The custard though was delicious - I can't claim that credit as it was Tesco's finest. No faffing about with vanilla pods and egg yolks for this girl - not yet anyway - one step at a time.

Poselq even 'phoned Auntie Mimi to tell her how impressed he was!

I am having leftover pie today for my lunch, with leftover gravy.

Poselq is cooking tonight - I think two days of me cooking in one week is enough for him.

Delia - eat my dust :)

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Boring? Middle Aged?

I have just read some of my recent posts and am now a bit concerned that I am becoming middle aged. This time last year I was writing about totally random stuff in a totally random way. Often about drinking, partying, dating, work and people in general.

Now I am writing about cooking!!! What's happening to me? Soon I shall be wearing big pants and flat shoes....NO, NO, NO......it's never going to happen.

Tomorrow I shall write about whips, chains, and whatever kind of deviant behaviour takes my fancy :)

Cheating

Last night, after it was  recommended to me (during our 'How to make Meat and Potato pie' chat) by my dear Aunt Mimi, I ordered this. I know that I should be ashamed and I shall have to hide the book from Poselq who is an accomplished cook  who does everything 'properly' - but I figure that coming to cooking so late in life I need all the help I can get:)

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Secrets

I have a secret. It's a secret recipe actually. Goodness me - what's happening that I would get excited over a recipe? I need more gin. Anyway the 'secret' recipe has come direct from the horses mouth - well the 'aunty's mouth' actually as my beloved Aunty Mimi called me tonight to give me her special secret recipe for Meat and Potato pie. I told my Mum that I was making the pie and she called Mimi, who then called me to impart her years of cooking experience. There is a special secret ingredient - and obviously I can't tell you what it is - or it wouldn't be a secret...would it? Anyway - tomorrow is Meat and Potato Pie day - and I shall have to start cooking it quite early - not because it takes a long time - but because I am a tit and am bound to make some horrific mistake - and will therefore need bags of time to remedy the situation.

Full update on 'Cooking fun' tomorrow - no doubt at all :)

Geneva


I've just realised that I haven't written anything about our weekend away in Geneva. Well, we had a lovely time! We left here on Thursday tea-time - I was designated driver of fast racey BMW - because 'im indoors had some phone calls to make. I didn't drive fast racey BMW in a fast racey way though - because I am calm and sensible (not like when I was in my twenties and anything under 90mph was walking speed). When we got to Weybridge we went for a lovely Curry before a sleepover at the Big House (flying from Gatwick mid morning Friday necessitated waking up in Surrey - not Oxfordshire) Luckily I am still welcome at the Big House and nobody had moved into my old bedroom in the last two weeks!!!

We flew - we landed - we got cab - we arrived at the Hotel. 

On Friday night we went out for dinner here. The Steak and frites were very good - I would recommend it!

On Saturday night we had fondue at a cosy little restaurant (cannot remember its name!) and then on Sunday morning we went for a wander and found the History of Science Museum.

We flew home again on Sunday afternoon. On the way back to Banbury I was no longer designated driver. He drove. That means travelling at warp speed. He likes to drive fast - which is a good thing as it means you get there quicker - however (you knew that was coming didn't you?) He's a very safe experienced driver - after all he drives about 600 miles each week. I, on the other hand, am not a good passenger. Just like my Mother (I am turning into her!) I get very nervous when not in control of the vehicle - and sweat and panic when the driver does things like fiddling with the radio at ninety miles per hour. Cue wimpering and the involuntary making of strange noises from some place near the back of my throat. I can't help it - I know how annoying it is (I have nearly de-camped my mother from my car before for committing the very same crime) but still do it none the less. 

The Poselq put up with this until we were nearly home - then I made one wimper too many and that resulted in a bit of a barking at. To be honest I deserved it!!! That meant to the rest of the journey was carried out in frosty silence. 

Once we got home I apologised, he apologised and then we had supper. All in all we had a lovely time :) Perhaps I need hypnotherapy?



Phoebe's first day out

Today Phoebe's two week quarantine period came to an end (no strange diseases in my horse!!) and she went out in the field for the first time in over 15 days. I have to report that she went to the field in a calm and orderly manner - with no rearing, no pulling, no shenanigans of any type whatsoever! Unbelievable really - all things considered. She was wearing her new green check turn out rug - and she looked lovely.

Her stable is all clean and fresh for when she comes in again at tea time - but I have a feeling that she will be clarted in sticky mud seeing as it has rained all day today here in Banbury.

On the domestic goddess front - I have just returned from a trip to Tesco to purchase all the ingredients needed to make tomorrow's meat and potato pie - and we're having apple and blackberry pie for dessert (with custard - yum yum). I have to confess to having purchased ready made pastry - one step at a time!!!!

Ratings on the dinner will be published tomorrow night:)

Monday, 2 March 2009

The scores on the doors........

I got an eight out of ten for the liver and onions. It had nothing to do with the fact that I drank a quarter bottle of Bombay Sapphire Gin whilst cooking the veg!!! I live to fight another day - on Wednesday I have to make a meat and potato pie ...wish me luck!!!

Cooking - again?

Today I am making Liver and Onions. It has been requested!! We shall have it with Mashed potato, carrots, spinach, and onion Gravy. It's in the slow-cooker as I type this. God, I hope it's edible!!!

RIP Michael

More sad news. The lovely Michael - a smashing friend and a true gent if ever there was one - has sadly lost his brave fight against cancer and passed away over the weekend. He will be sadly missed.  "Yo MacTaplin".