Posts

Showing posts from September, 2015

Wednesday Morning

Well as I sat down to scribble the news arrived that son number one is due to arrive on the evening of the 6th October.  He gets into Heathrow at 6pm so I will not expect him to arrive home until after 9pm.  I am glad that now I have a date and time I can organise myself a bit better.  With any luck the car should be back today after its very expensive trip to Landrover.  I still haven't heard anything regarding the coffee machine but hopefully that too should be back soon.
Yesterday was a glorious autumn day and it put me in mind of the second season I took Basso hunting.  It was early October, as that is when the shooting season starts, and it was 35ÂșC and we were worried about heat stroke for the working dogs. So there is still hope for some warmth before winter finally sets in.
Alfred, my new pet spider, is busy making another web he did manage to catch a small fly yesterday and I did a bit of research he is apparently an Araneus diadematus as he has a very distinct white cro…

Tuesday Morning

Lets start with some good news the money has reached Thailand and we should soon be given the travel arrangements.  Denny is coming to clean and the sky is clear.  Now for the not so good news Landrover rang yesterday and will need to keep the car until Wednesday and worse still it is going to cost me £2,000 to get the repairs done.  All I can say is thank heavens for my savings pot this month has to be the most expensive on record.  Now I am in a real cleft stick do I keep the car having just spent so much on it or do I go ahead and sell while it is in tip top condition and before something else breaks.  I am not sure which way to go I will have to give it some serious thought.  
Now this will make you laugh as you already know I am marginally crackers and after watching the spider make his web  I decided to reward him and threw a dead fly, I found on the kitchen window sill, into his web and watched him wrap it in silk in moments and this morning Alfred, yes I have given him a name…

Monday morning

Good morning all here we are at the beginning of another week.  Yesterday went well and the roast pork turned out very well the crackling was a little soft in places so while the meat rested I put it back in a hot oven for about 10 minutes which did the trick.  I added a tablespoon of sour cream to the gravy which was really nice to give a little acid touch to what can be a bit of a greasy meal.  I managed to get rid of a couple of bits from the garage namely the vice and the grinding wheel both of which were bench mounted.  I am very careful about this and always ask the wife first as I find the men are like kids in sweetshop and I don't want to be responsible for landing someone else with our refuse.  I have offered Sandy first refusal on stuff for her allotment and I know that Mark the gardener also has his eye on some of the items.  Once I have given away all I can I still think a skip will be needed to get rid of the remainder.
James friend arrive around 5pm and it was decid…

Sunday morning

Good morning all yesterday was a red letter day nothing broke and the new remote control arrived as did Mikes prescription so with the exception of my lovely coffee machine all is functional.  While I set to and made the shepherds pie James maned the laundry and got three machine loads out on the line and neatly folded when dry so all I have left to do is a small amount of ironing.  For lunch we had some part baked baguettes with some ham and cheese and some tomatoes still warm from the greenhouse.  The pie was for supper with some broccoli florets.  Today lunch is going to be some roast pork which at last I have remembered to take out of the freezer.  I will have to make a dash for the shops to replenish the milk and a few other essentials like biscuits.  Mike is going through about 5 packets of biscuits per week so it is all I can do to keep up with the biscuit supplies.  I have tried to explain that they are not the most nutritious of foods but he likes them so what the hell he ca…

Saturday

Sorry to be so late but I had a pretty disturbed night and finally fell asleep at 6am.  I had a busy day yesterday which started at the bank which was in a state of total disarray they seem to be in the middle of a refurbishment so lots of wet plaster and bits of the ceiling missing.  However there were staff on hand helping people to an assortment of machines as there were only two counters open at the time and a queue that went on for miles.  Money sent to Thailand for a ticket home - what I don't understand is why it takes two working days to reach there when all that is happening is that someone is typing number in a computer.  After all I can send a text which arrives in seconds and share transactions happen almost in real time.  Then it was up to Curries to replace the home phone the charger part of it had broken so I took a management decision and bought one with 4 hand sets so we can dot them around the "bungalow" so I have left them packed up and just remove on…

Friday morning

Good morning all according to the weather forecast we in for a good weekend or a least a dry one.  It will be a relief not to have rain for a couple of days.
It looks like the balloon has gone up in Thailand and I didn't make the spare bed up needlessly.  Soon I will have and extra pair of hands to help with the declutter.
Yesterday morning I made us breakfast of the Jamie Oliver breakfast popovers and very nice they were too.  This has to be one of the best uses of cottage cheese ever, especially as I don't like cottage cheese or breakfast.  Lunch was the leek and potato soup James had made and supper was some bubble and squeak and fried eggs.  I glazed a ton of carrots which are now in the freezer ready to nuke when needed.  Once the weather dried up a bit James and I took the dogs for a run and boy did they run.  Dan made a complete fool of himself when he was chased by a small puppy no bigger than a Yorky and he legged it with his tail between his legs.  What a big girls …

Thursday morning

Yesterdays sunshine was short lived by lunch time we were again beneath a blanket of cloud and this morning it is wet and blowing, however the forecast looks better for the weekend.  In the morning I got on with a bit of cooking I had loads of potatoes that needed using up so I made some sweetcorn chowder and James made a big pot of leek and potato soup.  By the way I might be teaching my grandmother how to suck eggs but I will mention this anyway in case it comes as news.  If you use blocks of parmesan there is always a piece of rind which I hang on to for soup making.  I just throw them in with the ingredients for good boil.  They soften dramatically and can be fished out at the end of cooking but if you are going to blitz the soup you can leave them in as they disappear easily but add lots of flavour to your soup.
We had the sirloin steaks for lunch with runner beans, mushroom and potato wedges but supper was a much smaller lighter meal we had a good old fashioned prawn cocktail w…

Wednesday morning

Yesterday the rain was supposed to stop by lunch time but no such luck it continued for most of the afternoon and evening.  Though it is still dark the sky is clear because I can see the stars and the temperature has dropped to single figures.  Today is supposed to be a good day weather wise but at least yesterday's rain made sure I got on with the ironing.  It always feel good to get to the bottom of the pile even though I know I am chasing my tail.  I think this is the soul destroying part of housework I hate, nothing ever lasts, nothing stays clean so you are trapped in a never ending repetitive circuit.
We tested the remote control yesterday morning but sadly it is dead so it was a quick phone call to Virgin who supply our cable TV and a new remote is now in the post.  Actually when the accident happened the dogs disappeared in double quick time.  Dan legged it for the garden and Tubby tried to bury himself under my pillow.  They had been having a grand game which if they had…

Tuesday morning

Good morning all guess what it has been raining since lunch time yesterday and it is still hosing down.  I don't know if it is just my perception but I can't remember a worse summer lets hope it is not followed by a really bad winter.  I can remember several of those and I would rather not have another.
Yesterday morning was largely taken up with hair appointments as I took Mike with me and we had consecutive appointments.  Anyway at least we don't look like uncared for dogs any more.  By the time we got back it was lunch time and I was not prepared so I fell back on a quick simple meal. Pasta with a simple sauce made from the one remaining slice of roast pork diced together with spring onions and tomatoes from the garden all cooked to mush then a liberal dousing of cheddar cheese. Then in with the boiled pasta and some of the cooking water to slacken the sauce and knob of butter for flavour.  Is this a record? lunch for three with one slice of cold roast pork.  James was…

Monday morning

Good morning all.  Today we are covered in a blanket of cloud but there are glimmers of sun peeping through the gaps.  
Yesterday I flew round Aldi and replenished the stock cupboards, I don't know who eats all the food perhaps we have some big fat mice somewhere!!!!  I had forgotten to get the pork joint out of the freezer so I bought one that was unfrozen and slammed it in the oven as soon as I got home.  I had a big bag of curly kale which unlike the chopped up stuff in the supermarkets came in the full leaf form.  This meant I could remove the tough centre rib and just lightly cook the greens.  Together with some sage and onion stuffing balls and a big blob of apple sauce it was a really decent meal.  The crackling was really crisp and got devoured in an instant.
As the joint was big enough we all had cold pork and apple sauce sandwiches for supper.  I got all my major jobs done in the morning so I could spend the afternoon soaking up a bit of sun and knitting.  I left the ir…

Sunday morning

Good morning all WE HAVE SUNSHINE and clear blue sky what a relief after all the miserable rain we have had over the week. I managed to get my car booked in with Landrover next Monday 28th and I am seriously thinking it is about time to change vehicles so once it is back to full performance I will have a look around at selling it and buying the same model but younger.  Once the niggles are fixed it is in reasonable condition and with a bit of spit and polish it will come up well.
I have been keeping tabs on Right-move and there seem to be loads of bungalows in our price range with the sort of accommodation I am looking for.  The object is to make a bit of profit from downsizing which will allow us to make alterations to the new place like adding ensuite bathrooms or conservatory and perhaps remodel the kitchen if necessary.  Anyway I am very hopeful that we will find something to our taste in East Anglia.  I would like to be near the coast but not on it.  There seem to be huge estate…

Saturday morning

Good morning all thank you all for your good wishes I think a day in bed has done me good as I feel much more human this morning. Yesterday morning I felt so dreadful I couldn't even face a cup of coffee.  I lived on water and paracetamol and slept for most of the day.  Fortunately James is better so he could take over where I left off.
The day before I gave my wardrobe a good going over and discovered I have about 1000 T shirts and 3 pairs of trousers.  Anyway I have thinned out the tops and discarded the gardening ones.  At least I can now see the wood for the trees.  I packed up a fair amount of stuff for the charity shop.
Today I will need to book the car into landrover as I have a couple of faults and some kind soul has smashed my wing mirror.  I seem to have hit a period of breakages but I guess that is just life.  Once the car is fixed I think the time has come to change it for a younger model.
Of all the days to spend in bed yesterday was probably the best as it rained al…

Friday morning

Sorry folks been hit with the virus that clobbered James going to stay in bed..

Thursday morning

Good morning all.  Yesterday it poured with rain for the whole day with short intermissions so I spent time knitting and reading and watching garbage on the TV.  I got some news about the coffee machine it is going to cost me £400 to repair and one part will not be available until October, just the sort of news to make your day.  If it were not built in I would have abandoned it but there is a big hole in the kitchen so really I have no choice.  Just as well the house is not on the market yet.  
I have been keeping and eye on property in East Anglia and there seem to be hundreds of bungalows for sale so I don't think we will have any problems finding somewhere else to live.  Hopefully with the profit from this place I will have enough money to make any alterations I fancy.  Like adding en suite bathrooms or a large conservatory.  The gardens are smaller and more easily coped with and if I can I will get my caravan on the front garden it will give me a nice extra space when visito…

Wednesday morning

So far the weather forecast is right and we have had buckets of rain.  Everything is dripping with water and I have had to resort to the tumble dryer.  It might just as well be mid winter. I was hoping an indian summer but it doesn't look like we are going to get one.
I finally finished the last of the jumpers for Shiona and have taken a management decision to use the last of the yarn to make a matching scarf.  The house is spotless after Denny's visit but there is still the inevitable pile of washing and ironing to be done.  
I bought a piece of ready roasted ham from Aldi and for supper last night we had ham egg and chips. The ham comes in one piece so you can slice it as thick or a thin as you choose which makes a change from the sliced ham that has been sliced thin enough for a microscope slide.
Today I fancy some fish for lunch and I have yet another pair of sweet corns in my veg box. Cooking for 3 is really difficult.  I think I will just strip the kernels and serve the…

Tuesday morning

Image
Good morning all, yesterday was a washout it rain heavily in the morning and then reduced to drizzle from then until mid afternoon.  Fortunately James had got the dogs out for their walk before the rain started so at least we were not treated to wet dog smell while they dried off.  
I did the buffalo burgers for lunch and though they were OK they shrank quite a bit and I think you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between them and any other beef burger.  They were not a patch on the wagyu burgers which are truly delicious.
Dan has followed me down stairs and is doing his morning patrol of the garden and of course he has set off next doors dogs who are now barking their heads off.  I was at first worried that my dogs would join in the barking but fortunately they just ignore all the noise and go about their business unperturbed.
While it was raining I got on with my knitting and finished the last jumper but I have still got some of the wool so I have decided to make a match…

Monday morning

Yesterday was fine in the morning but it started to rain in the afternoon and by the look of the garden it has rained most of the night.  Everything is soggy and dripping.  James has just taken the dogs for their walk and Mike is still in bed so I have a few minutes of peace and quiet to wake up.  
I had the inevitable trip to Aldi yesterday and found they had buffalo burgers, well you know me, I had to have some to try.  I finally got round to making the tuna burgers and they were really nice and went very well with a plain tomato salad.  Supper was equally easy we just had a sandwich of ham and Emmental with a good smear of english mustard.
So far today I have no idea what we are going to eat but my freezer is a bit fuller so I have plenty of choice.  I have quite a few errands to run today so I had better get going.  The coffee pot is bubbling and that is my first priority.  
Have a good day all

Sunday morning

Image
Good morning all.  I am up a bit later this morning with no barking dogs I was able to sleep until 6am which is quite reasonable.  The rain we were promised came in small showers scattered through the day and this morning we have a nice red glow as the sun comes up.  Is this this "red sky in the morning shepherds warning"?  I guess we will have to wait and see.
Yesterdays lunch was a nice easy job I just fried off the chicken thighs and then added them to a tray of red and orange peppers, cherry tomatoes, onions and garlic cloves then the whole lot was put in the oven for about half an hour to cook the vegetables.  I had one portion left over so I put it in the thermomix and blasted it into soup which I will put in the freezer this morning.  No one fancied the tuna burgers so in the end we shared a take away pizza that would have made the Italians cry with shame.  It was just a big soggy mess oozing grease from the wrong cheese.  I don't know why I don't learn that …

Saturday morning

4am and next doors dogs are barking and woke me up now I don't know what to do. If I go back to bed I risk a headache and if I stay up I can make a start on the days chores.
Yesterday was a glorious sunny day and I managed to get all the washing done and dried so now it is the ironing which is the major chore.  Mike had a visit from the occupational therapist who is Rumanian and she is the sweetest of girls she managed to persuade Mike to accompany her on a walk up the garden as far as the pond which is about half way, still it is a start and the farthest he has walked in ages.
We actually had breakfast for a change thanks to Joy and her use of the excess tomatoes.  I had just had a major picking session and had loads of small fruits so I cooked them down with a splash of oil and a clove of garlic until they were of a jam consistency then spread on toast.  Very tasty and just the sort of thing I fancied for breakfast.  Lunch was a sort of prawn cocktail, perhaps more accurately i…
Image
Good morning all.  Yesterday went according to plan the guy who was to mend the coffee machine turned up at 9 am and quickly decided that it needed to go to the work shop for repair so I am with out my wonderful machine for anything up to two weeks.  However, I am not going without coffee and have resorted to the good old fashioned way.  
That dealt with the central heating engineer turned up and now I give you full permission to laugh your socks off.  The central heating controller is wireless and just needed new batteries.  I had diagnosed this as a possible problem but after 6 years Mike was convinced that it was wired in to the mains.  In some ways, though I feel a fool, I had no idea how to open the plastic box of tricks and stood a very good chance of damaging it if I attacked it with a screw driver. Anyway now I know and in 6 years time I hope I will no longer be here and I have a years worth of boiler maintenance cover cover.  With winter coming that can be no bad thing.  
On…

Thursday morning

Good morning all.  They say misfortunes come in threes and yesterday the coffee machine gave up the ghost so I have an engineer coming today to fix that.  This means I am on cups of tea instead of coffee not my favourite morning beverage.  At the moment I have no idea when either the central heating or coffee machine engineers are coming but I should know by 9am.
The weather was dismal yesterday morning in fact we had drizzle for much of it however it did brighten up in the afternoon.  I did us some fish for lunch with runner beans and crushed potatoes and for supper James made a very tasty mushroom risotto.
The sky is just getting light and it looks cloudless but how long that will last is anybodies guess.  It is still pretty chilly at 11 degrees.  Once I have found out when the engineers are coming I can make some plans for the day.  I really need to do a small shop for milk etc. again this will depend on the times I am given.  Hopefully by tomorrow I will have my coffee machine a…

Wednesday morning

Good morning all it is only just beginning to get light but the sky looks overcast.  I made a bit of a mistake yesterday by going back to sleep after the barking woke me.  Of late I have managed to go back to sleep with no unwanted results but not yesterday I gave myself the mother and father of headaches which hung on determinedly all day.  Anyway I am up a bit earlier today as I don't want to fall into the same trap again.  
Fortunately our boiler problem only affects the radiators not the hot water as the engineer can't come until tomorrow.  At least we have hot water for showers etc and if push were to come to shove I have two gas fires one in the lounge and one in the dining room so we will never be cold.  
James is still very croaky but up and about taking the bins out for me which is most welcome. Yesterdays lunch was a rather sad affair I just boiled up a bag of tagliatelle and made a sauce with some chopped ham, skinned and pipped tomatoes, grated cheddar cheese and …

Tuesday morning

Good morning all.  Today looks more overcast than yesterday which was a brilliant drying day for the laundry which is all done and now awaiting my loving touch with the iron.  Next doors dogs had me awake several times in the night with their barking, they are becoming a real pain in the posterior. 
Late yesterday evening James noticed that the control panel for the central heating was flashing constantly.  We had a look to see if there was some obvious problem but could find nothing and all our efforts were in vain so this morning I will be on the phone to the manufacturer to see what I can do and if I need a heating engineer to come and fix it as it is now as dead as mutton.  As far as I can tell the hot water is unaffected but this is something that needs fixing sooner rather than later.  I don't want to call out an engineer to replace a batterie or something very simple.  I think it is wired into the mains so it shouldn't be just a batterie but who knows this is not my fi…

Monday morning

Good morning all well at last the weather has turned and we have clear skies it is cold but bright which I can live with.  
Yesterday was a quiet day I got my shopping done and made the bubble and squeak with bacon chops for lunch and supper was some ham and mustard sandwiches.  I still have about half the cabbage left so today it will be bratwurst with buttered cabbage and boiled potatoes which hopefully will see the end of the cabbage.  James is already out with the dogs so that will be one less job for me.  Today looks like a good day for laundry and as usual the laundry basket is full.  I think there is a laundry fairy who makes sure the basket is always full so thank goodness for washing machines.
We were hoping to go shooting on Wednesday and if this weather holds it looks like we might make it however much depends how James is feeling with his chest.  I had a bit of a disaster with my knitting I dropped a stitch which ran like a ladder in a stocking and was impossible to recap…

Sunday morning

Good morning all guess what the sun is shining it is still cold but at least it is bright.  We have had some news from Thailand and while things seem chaotic at least we are now in the picture.  Whether he comes home or not depends on if he gets a job or not so it is all a waiting game.  James is quite rough with his chest and feeling rather unwell but he still took the dogs out first thing.  I have now sent him back to bed as rest will do him only good.
Yesterday I made a big pot of minestrone which we ate for both lunch and supper.  It was pretty substantial so it was more of a meal than just a bowl of soup.  Today I have a savoy cabbage that needs eating so I am thinking bubble and squeak and bacon chops.  However I will have to hit the shops for the bacon chops and a few other bits and pieces.  Fortunately the shops don't open until later on a Sunday and I have had a long lie in this morning.  I seem to be making up for a life time of lost sleep.
I will keep this short as I a…

Saturday Morning

Good morning all.  It is another winter like day with no sun just thick cloud and the temperature is only just in double figures so pretty chilly.  Yesterday was much the same cold and cloudy with nothing to recommend it except it was dry.  Let's hope the indian summer may yet save us from what has been a very dismal summer.  
One of James friends came to visit and as she is a cake maker she brought us a Bakewell tart and a tea bread with stacks of fruit which did us for supper.  For lunch I had done a pork fillet which I first cut into medallions then batted out, dipped in seasoned flour and fried until well coloured.  I then transferred the meat to a roasting tin and added red peppers onions and loads of tomatoes from the garden.  A splosh of marsala and a handful of sage leaves an in the oven it went just until the veg was cooked and marginally charred on the edges.  I served it with some tomato bread sticks and some buttered runner beans.  It made an acceptable lunch and stre…

Friday morning

Good Morning all and it is a good morning the money has landed in Thailand well done the staff of  Nat West Bank who have been very kind and helpful and made this happen.  Is he coming home you ask well sadly we don't know any other details yet. 
Shiona came over and had been suffering from Aldi deprivation so we had a trawl around and she also had her car washed by our eastern european car wash and she was amazed at how they descended on the car like a swarm of ants.  It was cleaned inside and out in a matter of minutes for the princely sum of £10 When they were done it was immaculate and she was thrilled.  Several members of the staff tried to glean information from us on where they could apply for jobs.  Naturally we told them about the job centre and also the library who would help them get on line to look for work we also advised them that apple picking would soon start and pickers are always needed on the local farms.  I have no problems with these immigrants they work like…

Thursday morning

Good morning all sorry about yesterday but I was desperately trying to track down the money I had sent to Thailand.  You know me well enough to know that I suffer fools very badly but I have to say that the folks at Nat West were wonderful.  Sadly I had to get to a bank and sign a piece of paper amending the account number which I had got wrong.  The lady I dealt with was older and obviously understood that I was a mother with a son in need of help so she was really helpful and did everything for me all I had to do was sign my name.  With the time difference the banks were about to close in Bangkok just as ours were opening so it was all a mad rush.  Hopefully the money will land in his account today or tomorrow.  We are still none the wiser if he is coming home or intending to stay put no doubt in the fulness of time we will find out. I haven't checked the email yet so I don't know if anything has happened overnight and I am slightly scared to even look.  
Today Shiona is co…

Wednesday morning

Sorry to be so late again but I am chasing my tail trying to sort out the money to Thailand it has gone from my bank but who knows where it has ended up.  I will get back to you if I have any news now I am very busy taking photos and scans etc.

Tuesday Morning

Good morning all just this second woken up.  Actually that no quite true I have made a cup of coffee first.  Yesterday was a total wash out thank goodness I had planned a day in the kitchen not the garden.  It rained all day not heavily but constantly and the dogs got soaked on their walk.
I made a big slow cooker full of bolognese sauce which will be divided up and put in the freezer now that it has cooled down.  I am going to keep this short and sweet as Denny is here already and I am in her way.  
No news from Thailand so still not sure what is happening in that direction.  Have a good day it is dry here but dull as ditch water.  I may attempt some laundry and hope.