Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Day 3..standstill..but wait..

The guy didn't come to further the kitchen today but April cleaned the newish oven for me and JB made these fab cakes.. banana and sultana (they taste spiced but we think it is the sultana) and chocolate, but these are Gluten-Free for Colin's dad, so they are individually frozen for him to have after supper, or with ice cream.

Thursday (that's tomorrow) I will have two men in the kitchen.. watch this space!!.. (and you know , I didn't think of this progression when I suggested a pic a a day at the weekend! )

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Day 2 in the kitchen!

Day 1
Day 2

Much discussion and anticipation...I am lucky enough to still have my 'old kitchen' so no problems with meals.. except all the furniture was everywhere..and that meant 'Easy Tea!'

Monday, 29 July 2013

Leading by example!

So I set the week's challenge over at Lucky Snapping here.. to post daily pictures, (or maybe a weeks worth in one go... that will let off the late comers!) so we can catch up with each other again.  

I thought it would be nice to see what everyone is up to as the school holidays settle in and hopefully we get some more nice days of sunshine (be it liquid or not!)

Here's my Monday... the kitchen (albeit in many many boxes) arrived today!

I just saw this as the random quote which comes up on my blog...  

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort!... xx

Monday, 22 July 2013


Lynne over at Lucky Snapping here has set us a lovely prompt today and I am going to get ahead and give you my ten penneth on a Monday for once!

She has asked us what we appreciate, basing this on Voltaire's quote :

Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well...

I think the thing I appreciate most of all is health., whether that is mine, my family's or good health in general. You just don't appreciate how great it is to be well until you have an off day or hurt yourself and all your plans are in turmoil. Similarly how hard it is to see the people you love suffering, whether it is something small or having to deal with the emotional fallout of an issue as much as the physical.

Then there is family..
 Yesterday was my brother's 64th birthday and we spoke on the phone for the first time in ages. Not that we had disagreed on anything, life just got in the way and we hadn't made time for it...not that I hadn't thought almost every day that I must call him soon!   He sounded great and says he is still fishing, a trip every couple of weeks, but he doesn't have to do too much manual work now, he is the skipper and 'find them the fish', the best use of all his experience, all 50 plus years of it I'm sure.

Our dad died at the age of 47 and a few days. My Mum was only 44 at the time and many a day I ponder how she must have felt and how grateful we all should be to have our health and consequently our life and loves for so many more years than they did.  Ken once said he thought he wouldn't be old but hey compared to Dad he did great already!

We talked a lot, caught up on the latest news, those 'hatched, matched and dispatched', as you do when you see friends and family after a while. We have 13 children between us, so Mum and Dad did well having the only two children from their direct families and us giving 13 grandchildren!  We agreed that is is quite special having a houseful of children, all those personalities and possibilities for the future.  My kids tease me about who is the favourite, like one of them may be loved more than the rest, but the best bit about having a big family is that each one brings more love and its not about sharing out a limited amount amongst more people!

I really like living close to where I have always lived, knowing that I don't have to go far before I meet someone who even if they are not a close relative, they may have shared some common history and perhaps loved and appreciated the same things.. there I go again, playing that nostalgia card.. 

.. I will add some more appreciation thoughts later in the week.. 

.. and send loves to Zac if he reads this from the bridge of the Star Princess out off Alaska somewhere!

Before I go.. I think we all appreciate massively, yet take for granted sometimes, the huge and fantastic advances in technology that have moved my life from writing copious pages of family news and sending out with Mr Postie in the hope it will not pass the recipient as they travel the email / Facebook / Blogger friendly world we live in, instant notes that have made the world a so much smaller place, letting our lad be on the opposite side of the world to us yet able to feel 'as close as the phone.. well Facebook or Blogger!'

Well my bum hurts sitting on this wooden stool so I am going in search of a laying down place!

More food!

Just catching up and reviewing my weekend, the thought came to me that once again the world in this household seems to revolve around food, lurching from one mealtime to another!  

I guess years ago when my Mum didn't go out to work and was raising us kids the same went for her.. a bit of washing, prepping for dinner and then later on for tea.  dad and Ken used to go to sea from Spring to Autumn and also fitted in the needs of the violet growing, but with the tides sometimes they went to sea twice a day.  maybe they went out at 4am and then in late morning, a bit of food, sleep and back out for the evening tide.  There was always a meal to be had and although there was only four of us it did seem like family time.

Dad and Ken used to tease me, what else do you do to a little girl as she is growing up. Ken once told me that because I had swallowed a prune stone that I might grow a tree out of my ears.. and promptly went outside to get a bit of bush to show me how I would look...not impressed, I can see the face I must have pulled in the grandchildren now when they get teased!

Mum made proper food, no tins and nothing pre-made. We had no fridge until I was about ten years old, we had solid rings on the cooker so it was hard to heat oil to be hot enough for chips, so they were a rarity too. On the odd occasion Mum did cook fish and chips Ken and Dad were known to have stood outside our back door and pretend they were waiting in line at a chip shop as the visitors to our little cove went by!

Favourites were Rice Pudding and Junket.. well junket wasn't that favourite but it was a kind of regular Sunday lunch dessert, light and milky, made to set by adding rennet (an enzyme from a cow's gut, the same thing that we have that sets milk in our gut when we are babies!)
The only bit I liked was the sprinkled nutmeg and sugar on top! 

Dad and I loved the skin which formed and caramelised around the edge of the rice pudding tin and we would both try and get that bit at the end of the pudding... I think Mum made a pint at a time, I always make two pints as Kate, Ross and I love it so much! One day recently someone in our house put the pan to soak and I missed the sticky edgey bit and I was really peeved!

Lyons Chocolate Cupcakes were such a treat when I was young. Not the BakerBoys ones they only seem to sell now, but the Lyons ones, with chocolate sponge and thick fudge. 

I think one day I had a huge debate with my brother about who could have the spare one as there were only three of us who would eat them. He was such a tease big brother.. and I guess maybe I was a whinger baby sister... just the same every generation!

School dinners were okay, except that they made you eat everything, the only way to get round it was to ask to not have something you disliked!  I loathed grated carrot in salad but it was already set out in the salad so no luck there. Many a time I have forced it down disguised in the mash we got given with salad!   

Pasty pie and bread pudding were school dinner favourites. I always recall seeing a small plate with a spoon of each food that was saved in case there was a case of food poisoning, a solitary plate left on the clean table behind the cooks!

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Back to blogging in earnest!

So I am trying to get back into a routine with this.. and here I am today. Col just got back from a three day trip and we had lovely supper with Ross & April..I love the summer salad and strawberry season, easy but oh so healthy feeling food.

The new room has been sanded (thanks to SiL Tom) and has the first wet paint after April & Ross came 'home from school '.. (they both work at a local Secondary). We spent a couple of hours masking it up on Monday and I got my camera out....

Lilly had her first school Disco (not really a disco Mum, more a lot of games in the yard!) so Lisa called by with Lyla and Annabelle. It's been a lovely summer, Lyla is talking loads and is always asking where is the cat; she has a love/ hate feeling about him, wants to find him but is dead scared of him then!

Lyla loves to eat, she grazes all day and is so lean.. she must use up all the energy learning..

.. and Annabelle has found her feet, she is making all the usual noises but it is sooo cute when she is 'ours', where did the last six months go?

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Getting reacquainted! July views! Food and more food..etc!


Oh my goodness a month has passed since I last wrote, lots of things have taken place, people have come and gone and events have happened, but it is so hard to get back on the blogging horse when there is so much to say.   I know I should just pick up here and run with it but as I kind of diarise it is hard to 'miss a bit'

As a starter I will go the easy route and share my July ever excuse the quality of some of these pictures!

This is the latest July yard view.. I have a verandah almost! 

The kitchen arrives late July so August will see a lot of boxes in my window view, but in July we have used the new room for some dining..
 This is the view into the new room where my window view 'was' ... ahhh we had just got home from a trip to Manchester (more on that later) and Zac was having his last few days with us; also our pals from the States were staying to work on a trolley venture and spend some time ..that's Ben between JB and Colin, food is the theme again here!!

 The view from further back shows that Kate's pole will still find a home, even amongst the building! I will probably lose the red theme on the walls and see if a nice light feeling can permeate the room... at least til I get a red splashback!! hahah... more food!

A little more restful was the Porthcurno July view, slightly ringing the changes, the view from the top of the hill, a peaceful sea, we should have been boating perhaps!..this was just before the glorious weather began.

Ahh Jordan came out boating last week, she is going to be a great boater, learning lots from Colin and never afraid to get wet!  It was a good chance to grab a Mount View, this was about 7pm and the sun was still nice and warm

Annabelle is just fab.. she is smiling and reaching for things and doesn't answer back yet so she is Ross' favourite!!  We had the three girls last week for Lisa & Tom to get a meal out, she is just 25 and I am just so proud of her, a Mum to three lovely girls, working so hard to make their business a success and giving her girls so much fun and love too.

The sofa was full with us two and the girls, I really should use the decent camera instead of my phone, esp in the evenings, but the moments just happens! 

 I have the other sofa view too, Ross and April were great keeping the girls (and us) amused with old style TV via Ross' Apple TV .. Sesame Street, the Magic Roundabout and the Clangers!


Since last I wrote Zac has left for his next sea phase, he is out of Seattle for three months and off to Alaska each week, like a geography field trip for work! Glaciers everywhere!

Before he left he had a few days in Southampton for the naming ceremony of the new Royal Princess.. and as you can see his camera is much better than mine!..the Sky walk piece of the new ship lets you walk out 'over the sea' and it has a glass floor!

Oh hello there!

But it hasn't just been Zac out with the paps.. Col and I went to Manchester mid June to see Robbie Williams, our Christmas gift from Lisa and Tom. I have really enjoyed planning the trip and while there we had a great time, saw some old friends, ate and drank lots and just chilled in grown-up fashion.

Ollie Murs was the support act and I just loved every minute of the stadium experience at ManCity / Ethihad.  Oh and my breakfast at the hotel should no go unmentioned..

When Ollie met Robbie..
Banana waffles of the MalMaison variety!

So now I am going to look at the calendar to see if there are any big events I have missed..of course July is a busy birthday month for us here..Ross turned 27, Lisa 25 and our gorgeous Lilly is 5 today..JB did them proud once again with Cake.. a Genoese sponge with raspberry / strawberry coulis and fresh fruit.

It's amazing I have been blogging almost five years now as Lilly's birth and my Mum's passing a few months after really spurred me on to put fingers to keyboard and preserve the memory!  I have found it hard to settle into blogging and also scrapbooking the last few months, the house has been in turmoil with the building work and somehow it doesn't make me feel very organised to relax and do cerebral memory things.

I wonder too if maybe five years on I am coming out of the shadows, the worries that if I don't chronicle things for the family 'history' etc that it will pass unnoticed.. I don't know.  

Getting the room sorted and space again to work on some pictures will hopefully give me chance to finish some of the half started scrap projects for Zac and JB.. and anyway with Zac away I have to blog to keep him breast of the family news.

As a PS I have just looked back over the challenges that Lynne and Anne have set and I hope that maybe this post shows just how 'Lucky' I have been with such a busy lovely life and how I am still taking the pics even if I'm not posting every day! 

 I am not sure the life I have sounds very 'Relaxing' as Anne prompted in June but I am thoroughly chilled and when we can Col and I have been grabbing a few hours to lay about and even nipping away for a few days. It is quite strange but very therapeutic, my favourite relax is Sunday brunch in a little cafe in Torquay where there is a free jukebox and we play Pretty Woman by Roy Orbison and lots of other 60s stuff.  Yes, that's our relax, some 'old tunes' on the stereo and some great memories!