Tuesday, 27 January 2009

It's been a little while since I updated, reason being, my mum came to tea on Friday so we could celebrate her birthday together. My mum was minimalist long before the word existed, so everything had to be tidy (correction, everywhere she might see had to be tidy - the rest doesn't bear thinking about!). I made her a Victoria sponge with lemon cream filling, so Friday was spent in the kitchen, adding to the washing up!! My dad always made one for our birthdays and when he died I took over the task. I was a little perturbed when I took it out of the oven - it looked as though it had hardly risen and felt as heavy as a brick!! But it was OK - apart from being very slightly lopsided (but that can be wangled when you put it together) and at least it wasn't burnt round the edges (much more drastic, you have to indulge in corrective surgery and then cover it up, and I hadn't anywhere like time for that!!).

I had a quiet evening after that - and managed to dig out a bit of my finger trying to open a crown cork without a bottle opener - that is still recovering. (It's right on the knuckle, so every time I flex it, it gets disturbed a little.)

Now I have time to do something else - what do I fancy? I'd love to make some cards (but that would play havoc with my tidy sitting-room, it's an inherently messy process, involving everything being out!!) and I have that book on the Catholic (aka Counter) Reformation which would be a good way to ease myself into studying again .... and a lot less messy!!

I hope one day I will make some cards - then this blog will look a little more interesting ..... assuming I eventually suss out how to post piccies .....

Well, I did neither of those things. I decided to go to Croydon to get some things I needed as the weather was as good as it was going to get for the next month or two, although that bite was back in the air again, which meant it felt worse than on Sunday even though it was sunny, and by the time I came back, after dark, I was quite well chilled.

First objective was to replace the purse I had stolen. They had the same one, so I could have replaced it exactly, but that one always tipped money out so I went for a slightly different one - not so many useful compartments, but the money stays inside. Next stop the kitchen department, for oven gloves and a baking tray, which I got, and added to them a new frying pan and a worktop slicing machine, which is really like a guillotine for food and I hope has a finer blade than a knife so will cut thin slices neatly. The frying pan is actually a skillet, so has higher sides - less food spilling out of it, I hope! I also got one of those things you use to hold an onion while you slice it which I hope will keep the onion in place.

I looked at hand mixers/blenders; the Kenwood Chefette I have had for years still works, but one day the bowl will crack and I doubt I can get a replacement. I couldn't see anything as compact, though there was a Bosch that seemed to do everything under the sun and I might well go for that if I need something new. For the moment I will stay with my old faithful.

Whatever they invent, they don't seem to have a tin opener that is compact, works efficiently and is easy to clean ....

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Domestic goddess I am not!

Things are looking up. Sitting room looks bare, other places chocka with all the stuff that was in there. Need to sort out big-time, but tidying is so boooring .... and surprisingly tiring; I've come to the conclusion that's because you need to think where to put each thing that's been misplaced, and, even worse, where to put the things that never were placed because you didn't know the right place for them!!

Must do stack of washing up! At least that has a definite place to go, and my investment in cocoa butter hand cream has solved the problem of cracked skin (due to being in water, and surprisingly painful).

Sunday, 18 January 2009


Took advantage of the better weather to do some shopping on Friday - and (I'm as sure as I can be) got my purse snatched out of my zipped bag!! :( Upside: it happened after I had done the necessary shopping and when the bank was still open, so reported it at once. Downside: the resultant hassle of being without the necessary plastic for at least this week and losing my student card (useful ID and the only photo of me that is half way bearable to look at!!).

What a hassle, but has to be done. Hope the **** gets caught using the plastic!! (Highly likely ... NOT).

Otherwise, not much to say .... mum's birthday this week, so hope to make a cake and have to tidy to make the sitting room fit for purpose (she is bound to notice the bit I haven't done .... because it doesn't worry me enough to be worth the hassle: good enough rather than perfection is all I aim for!!). Something (as distinct from nothing) needs doing anyway, and I still have to sort the craft stuff (which has been moved out for said visit, so will be harder to sort).

It's not a place I've wanted to sit in cold weather, but I now have an additional heater so I can supplement the central heating (judging by both the John Lewis website and the local ironmonger having sold out, I was not the only chilly mortal in the land ;-) )

Thursday, 8 January 2009


I went to look at the Capture the Magic sale and bought some good things - papers (I'm loving Paisley at the moment) among which is the Paisley Christmass one I missed getting earlier. I have to be careful, because if they're 12x12 scrapbooking ones they're often too large in scale to use for cards, but I hope I've chosen right. I've tried to stick to things that will go with what I already have (which is why I went for sheets of paper, not pads - I don't need so many of the same design - and I've tried to get colours I haven't got: masculine blues). My brother has acquired a stepson, so I have to learn to think 'boy'!! Doesn't help that sport for me is the longest yawn in history .... I got some horsey stickers, too, because I have peel-offs of horses (back to girly again!).

I have got more than one of some - the Christmass one (I might make packs of cards) and one or two of the others: I'm hoping to cover some boxes and I'll probably need a bigger piece than 6x6, and more than one if I need to practise!! as undoubtedly I will!

I am still chilly - not good for the health, and it's not that I don't dare put the heating up; I've done that and it's still cold in here. John Lewis no longer had the little heater I was thinking of getting, so I must be one of many who feels the need of a heat boost just now. I've known this house chilly before, but not so much so that the heating system can't cope (and that despite the fact that it was a bit warmer outside today - not that I was going to test it myself - my desktop gizmo told me!).

I tried to put a comment on the Salt site, but it told me I had the wrong username/password :( despite the fact that I got on here - tomorrow is another day and I'll try again. The theme is 'self-control' and my immediate thought is the necessity of said virtue if my New Year project is to succeed! So my LO would feature the tools I need to do the job and the words of St Paul on running with patience the race that is set before us - I expect results after two days, and the race concerned is a marathon not a sprint!! I won't get it done, because I still have to learn to use the camera to do the photos (not to speak of finding the items in question - at the moment I'm working from memory, having done it before).

Salt, if you don't know it, is a site belonging to a group of Christian crafters who like to express their faith through the crafts they enjoy, so if that sounds like you, saunter over for a look.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009


It really is!! And the heater I wanted to order from John Lewis is no longer on their website, though I don't think it was a sale item :(

That's the bad news. The good news is that the weather forecast is showing it as warming up a bit on Sunday - which I will believe once it happens! It's misty here, so no sun to warm us inside, but it is better than the forecast. Another downside is that for some reason I always feel I want to eat when I'm cold .... which is a big no-no if I want my projects to succeed.

Tuesday, 6 January 2009


Actually, I haven't been at the booze, but my New Year project had a little glitsch Saturday night ..... there was a bag of crisps from Christmass and the cold had me having an extended nibble .....

I had a pub lunch on Sunday. At the moment it's so cold I only go out on Sunday, to go to Mass and top up my groceries. While I'm out I have a bit of a treat - lunch before I go home. Lunch happened about 4 pm - garlic bread followed by surf and turf, so lunch and supper in one! And cake and coffee to finish off. Usually I make it a panini at the coffee shop, then cake and coffee, but I was so late I didn't want to cook again that day. I feel a bit guilty that I didn't get to Mass (I had to wait until it was the same temperature as it had been last week to go out and by then it was too late) and yet got to the shops, and I feel I've missed out, too.

Even though I've got the heating high I'm not really warm. I don't think the heating system is geared up to this. It was on my list to organise getting it serviced and it might not be working as it should, so it would be worth checking .....

Otherwise I'm now back on the straight and narrow and impatient to see results! They just don't come that quick ....

Never did get back to the reading, but need to - life is just too boring staying inside otherwise!

Friday, 2 January 2009

Today's the day!

For me to start my New Year projects!

Which meant I skipped butter on the toast (good move, didn't miss it, so that leaves scope for a little indiscretion somewhere else). Lunch is already prepared, so I might tackle the washing up instead of cooking - I swear to it, if you leave even as much as a teaspoon in the sink it breeds! Whatever, the washing up seems to pile up .....

After lunch I'll dig out my book and do some study: I miss it, and will definitely go back to it in September (assuming I will be accepted for another bite at the cherry: the last bite was more a series of ineffective nibbles, but I'm starting from a different place this time). I am looking forward to re-visiting a book I read after A Levels - Henri Daniel-Rops' account of the Catholic Reformation (aka the Counter-Reformation). It has the advantage of having been written in modern times, but (just) before Vatican II, which means the Council of Trent is its reference point. Thus it gives a picture of the influence that Council had before it was superceded by Vatican II. From what I remember, there should be some nice juicy quotes in there ..... handy for the emphasis our new course director puts on Trent. It will be revision for me, because I read quite a lot about it when I was at uni first time around.

Thursday, 1 January 2009

New Year!

I hope it will be a good one, especially for anyone who has good reason to be glad to have said goodbye to 2008.

Not much revelling in this neck of the woods - 00.01 am saw me snuggled under the duvet!! I'm glad I didn't get there any earlier as my neighbours decided to greet 2009 with fireworks - that's how I knew it was midnight!! There were only a few, so no great disturbance, but if they'd woken me up I'd not have been best pleased.

Someone else had been out celebrating and serenaded the street at 2 am - again, luckily, I was awake anyway - so 2009 has started well, with a lie-in and I think the cold is on its way out.