Sunday, 28 August 2011

Break-up Cupcakes

Earlier this week the couple next door parted ways. Whilst treading the fine line between not wanting to look like I was prying and still getting all the gossip to pass on to City Boy, I managed to ascertain that their relationship had suffered a long, drawn-out demise and that he was finally moving out of their shared flat. What do you say in such a situation? I have no idea, so instead I baked goodbye, cheer-up, all-the-best, plenty-more-fish cupcakes to send off with him and all his wordly posessions.

I felt that if any humble cupcake could convey all that it would be red velvet with cream cheese icing.

I did try and explain that I hadn't made cupcakes because I thought him leaving was a celebratory occasion, but rather that baking is my instinctive reaction to many and varied circumstances. I think he understood.

I had intended to insert some photos into the above text, but remembered my intention only after I had sent the final remaining cupcakes off to work with City Boy.

We're currently up North, originally for a wedding on Friday, and currently spending a couple of days in the beautiful Peak District, dodging the showers by hiding in country pubs. When you emerge to a sight like this it's difficult to mind the rain too much.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Testing, testing

I've been incredibly slack about getting around to writing all the posts I want to. Even though I've spent the last four months sitting on the sofa. After some consideration I reached the conclusion that this was perhaps due to the fact that every time I want to put a post together I have to drag out the laptop, find the camera and the cable, edit photos, load to flickr and write the post. So this evening I downloaded a couple of apps that should, at least in theory, mean I can do all this from my iPhone. I understand that I will even be able to draft posts on the tube, so there should be no excuse now.

City Boy is out this evening, so with our resident fish-phobic catered for elsewhere, the cats and I could have haddock for dinner. Mine in the form of fresh, spicy kedgeree, made with tomatoes picked from the garden ten minutes earlier.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

August Garden Update

Where has the sun gone?! I took these pictures yesterday, and meant to quickly write something to accompany them this morning, but it's a very different view from the back door this morning. It's been raining since I woke up at 7 - that's English summertime I guess!

My little garden is turning into a jungle. I can't do anything about it at the moment other than ineffectually poke at things with a crutch, so I'm just going to let nature take its course and enjoy it as it is.

Last night I picked baby courgettes about five inches long straight from the plant, sliced them in half and grilled them on the barbeque. We also barbequed whole red peppers (not home-grown unfortunately) and halloumi and ate it all in french bread with onion chutney. Delicious, and even more so for being eaten outside on a balmy evening. I can't wait for the tomatoes to ripen, hopefully they'll get a move on now we've finally got some sunshine.

I have nasturtiums growing like crazy all over the place.

They're currently dropping these large seed-pods all over the garden - I'll have to find out if there's anyway of drying them out to use next year.

The sweet peas have more blooms everyday. I've already had two vases full and they just keep coming.  I went for subtle colours this year - these are 'Champane Bubbles' and are delicate peaches and cream colours. I've already made a mental note to go bright next year. These are pretty, but they get a little lost amongst all the other colours crammed into the garden.

The cats had turned semi-feral in this wonderful weather. If I didn't feed them inside they'd never have come in to the house. Of course it's a different story now it's raining and they want to sit on my lap with wet muddy paws.

Monday, 1 August 2011

The Benefits of Neurosurgery

 As far as I can tell...

...there are only two good things...

...about needing surgery on your spine.

The first is that people bring you...

...a ton of flowers...


The second that you are allowed, in fact instructed... spend the afternoon like this:


(Glass of wine probably not actually recommended in conjunction with the painkillers. Would anyone believe me if I pretended it was apple juice?)