Just me 'blurbing' about life..past, present & future…family, ancestry, books, sport, crafts…whatever pops into my head!

The Gallery: Week 96 – Extreme Close-up

…I realise this is not the ‘arty’ interpretation of ‘Extreme Close-up’ but this photo immediately sprung to mind when I saw this week’s prompt!  Sorry it’s blurry too but it was just funny when he caught sight of himself, he looks so surprised!!



Pop over to Tara Cain’s ‘Sticky Fingers’ Blog to see how close-up everyone else got!  Click here to see all the other entries




Listography: 5 reasons why I know I am a ………Headless Chicken!

I think this term now best describes my days, my months, my life; my poor attempt at being a mother to 3 children, wife to 1 long-suffering husband, friend to many, slave to the grindstone etc!


1.   There are laundry baskets in varying stages of the process littered around the house…consequently the drawers & wardrobes are empty and when anyone yells ‘where’s my school uniform’, shirt, pants etc, I direct them to the ‘blue stripey bag at the top of the stairs/washing line/fermenting PE kit bag!

2.   I have half finished jobs/projects all around the house; half a Granny square that I started in my eager moments of thinking I should learn to crochet (why?), a bag of compost, a zillion pots and many packets of seeds on the garden table in my ‘groundforce’ moment when I thought we should grow our own and a John Lewis bag of material gathering dust next to my Kirsty Alsopp’s Craft book (also gathering dust!) next to a curtain pole…I couldn’t decide whether  to make curtains or bunting on my new sewing machine (also gathering dust!!) so did neither so far!

3.   I regularly open the microwave to find my mug of tea which I hadn’t had time to drink before the school run so popped it in the microwave to reheat (yuk!) on my return and prompty forgot I had put it in there.

4.   I actually make it out of the door in time for the school run, complete with everyone in hats/gloves/shoes/coats (not necessarily their own), school bag, water bottle, nappy bag, phone, keys…seatbelt on, start the car, realise I am still in my pyjama trousers and slippers…pop back inside to dress appropriately and collect the child I forgot to put in the car the first time (no, I’m not joking!).

5.   The hallway has a plethora (hate that word) of plastic bags with who knows what in…they’re all destined for somewhere, borrowed baby bits back to a friend, charity shop offerings, hand-me-downs for friend who just had a new baby, Skaterboy’s eco project that should’ve been in school last week, overdue books for the library and many more…I just keep forgetting to put them in the car!

It’s a worry, this list of 5 is just a snippet of daily/weekly chaos, I really need to streamline my life but just don’t know where to start! I might just pop the kettle on to make a cuppa…then forget I ever did and pour myself a glass of wine!

To see more entries in this weeks listography, visit Kate Takes 5



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The Gallery: Week 95 – Colour

…fab prompt for this time of year, I love how the grey/white/grim colourless winter gets blown away by the vibrant lively colours of spring…I do feel like a hibernating hedgehog just waking up!


This azalea caught my eye in the local florists, not only for it’s sale price of £2 but it’s gorgeous colour and I’m not a real ‘pink’ person! I thought it would brighten up the garden…that is until my Dad reliably informed me that if I have an azalea that is in bloom now…then it is not a hardy one and can’t be put in the garden (how does he know such things?)…annoying, but still beautiful and now brightening up my kitchen!


Taken in Scotland last year, I love the warmth of this picture knowing that it wasn’t warm up there at all…if only it were taken by me (clever husband, *groan*).

See what the others have posted at The Gallery at Sticky Fingers. …there’s many impressive and interesting interpretations this week, as always!



…Food, Glorious Food!

Every week I have the same old dilemma of what to feed the family…Image

…3 meals a day, 7 days a week…and a variety of ages to accommodate…it stresses me no end and I just can’t seem to get a handle on it.  I go to the supermarket with a very limited list of things I can actually remember that we’ve run out of…most I don’t remember and  the rest of the things I buy are because I like them or they are on offer…rarely because I have thought of what I am cooking and they are part of the ingredients list!  No wonder our grocery budget is out the window and through the roof!

I must spend hours opening & closing the larder & fridge doors in the hope that inspiration will jump out at me…more usually I realise that there is not much you can make with microwave popcorn, a jar of hollandaise sauce & a pack of mini batternberg cakes!

So how glad was I to see this linky re: meal planning…clearly this was a sign..I must sign up and start to get a little organised when it comes to meals in our house!

OK, deep breath and jump in…off the top of my head (…and desperately trying to think of what is in the larder, fridge & freezer) I will cook the following this week:

Monday: Penne Bolognaise (slight cheat as have just done this meal & had home-cooked sauce in the freezer!)

Tuesday: Moroccan Chicken with couscous

Wednesday: Kedgeree

Thursday: Pasta Bake (no idea what this is just yet but will probably be whatever I can find in the fridge/larder)

Friday: Katsu curry

Looks easy enough…apart from that it doesn’t include lunches or alternatives for Little Miss Red who, at 10mths, is probably not quite up for Katsu Curry yet.  Oh well, it is only my first week so we’ll suck it and see, who knows, I may even take photos!

Cooking with love!

I’m linking this up to Meal Planning Monday over at At Home With Mrs. M.


The Gallery: Blogger Wedding Album

….yipppeeeeeeee, I will actually get to be in a Wedding Album…finally!  We had a ridiculous number of photographers (guests) at our wedding along with a professional Wedding photographer but still have no Wedding Album…or even a framed photo come to think of it!

We married in Feb 2005 after having got engaged in the previous October.  It wasn’t a great deal of time to plan a wedding but I really had no choice.  We both worked in MotorRacing, along with so many of our friends, with the season starting in March & ending in November we either had to do it before the season started or after it finished…I didn’t want to wait so long in case he changed his mind so opted for the earlier date.

Being a Wedding Planner it should’ve been easy really but planning your own is a different game altogether…it was comedy for the most part but I loved every minute of it…especially these funny bits…

…oh dear, the Groom got the Bride’s name wrong!!! There was an audible gasp from the guests…

he’s lucky I still said ‘yes’!

The beautiful confetti throwing & bubble blowing moment was lovely…

until someone (naming no names!!) got the bird seed out…got the Groom right in the eye…

The first dance to Paul Weller’s ‘You’re the best thing’ (we met at a Weller concert in Barcelona)…this was supposed to be a beautiful moment, a Dutch tradition started by friends where everyone holds ribbon ends and you end up entwined together in beautiful colourful ribbon….it didn’t quite trasnslate as the ribbons lengths were too short…

more like being lassooed is how ours was!

“Say something nice about the bride”…I hope I wasn’t too threatening!!

“Just Married”…

The End

Thanks to Tara Cain & A bloggers wedding album …go take a look at everyone else’s ‘meringues & vol au vents’!

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Silent Sunday

Silent Sunday mocha beanie mummy

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The Gallery: Week 93 – Friends

…’oh goodie’ I thought when I saw this weeks prompt, I have great friends and lots of photos of them…some from my distant past, lots recently through having my children and many collected from each chapter of my life along the way.  As a hoader of most things, any things from my past…I also collect & hoard friends.

Here’s a few of them:

My best mate ‘Bird’…we became friends at University when we played Volleyball together, ultimately ending up travelling the world together, working together…still best mates nearly 20 years on, she’s awesome!

I met Lula at work…she tagged on to a holiday a few of us had booked to Bali, a random liquid lunch in Kuta and many Cuba Libre’s later and we became best her!

My wonderful big Sis, Hils…obviously known her a while and tho’ we fought as kids, she is my most precious friend in the world…so lucky to have her.

…and this is all of us together on my 40th at an outside ice rink…I love that I met each of them at different places & times but we all have worked and played together!

These are a mixture of some of my closest friends from university and a summer camp in the USA but all happily morphed into one common group of friends now…this was taken when we all met in Australia for one of my best friend’s (Dickie) wedding (me with the beer in hand!). We still all catch up, not all at the same time so much as spread in various countries and now all with children but it’s always like the good ole carefree days when we do meet up.

In the yester years of letter writing (can barely get a birthday card off on time these days) I took great care in choosing all my different coloured & patterned stationery from the shops and specific pens depending on my mood and I would write letters to everyone…and there was nothing like the thrill of receiving one back.  If only those days were still here and the post didn’t only consist of bills, flyers & other boring stuff.

However, I can’t complain about the ‘modern day letter writing’ as catching up with old friends on Facebook & emails from around the world is fab.  Sometimes I think I should trim down the number of friends I try and stay in touch with but each one holds memories of a certain time & place in my life and without them and the photos that go with them, I would forget bits of my life.  So I’ll hold on to them all (I still have most letters I’ve ever received too and address books dating back to school…yes, our loft is fairly full!) for now and continue to carry on making new ones…you never know when you may need one!

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Listography: Cook Books

When it comes down to it, I probably love the idea of cooking more than the ‘actual’ doing…I don’t think this was always the case as from attending Catering College at 16, I have never really been far away from the Food & Hospitality Industry. With stints in Formula 1 hospitality and now currently working for a top London caterer, I would consider myself a real ‘foodie’…but more the ‘eating’ side of things than the production.  Since being on maternity for the 3rd time, cooking seems to have become more of a chore than a pleasure, with having just cleared away from one meal catering for all age ranges from weaning baby to hungry husband, I’m already having to think of the next one…3 x’s a day, 7 days a week, it has kind of lost a bit of that magic due to time constraints.

So I’m really pleased that Kate Takes 5 has chosen fave Cook Books for her Listography topic this week as it has prompted me to fall in love with my recipes again…here’s my Top 5…

1. Tana Ramsay’s Family Kitchen


I turn to this book regularly and have some faves that I know the kids will eat and are very easy to do…still loads I haven’t tried but look delicious so will get round to it one day!

2. Nigella Lawson’s Nigella Express


I like Nigella and I love her food…I always have the ingredients for her Rocky Road in my cupboard and often make it when I need a bit of a pick-me-up…my copy is still in storage since moving house but it’s all on the internet thankfully.

3. Bill Granger’s Simply Bill


I love his books and style of cooking…it really is so ‘laid back Aussie /outdoor lifestyle’, a real tonic to counteract our somewhat dreary winter weather.  I make his coconut bread regularly, served toasted with lime marmalade, it’s to die for (actual recipe in another of his books) and again, my copy still in storage 😦

4. Various!


Ok, so this one is a bit of a cheat but I am a sucker for those freebie recipe cards found in all the supermarkets and any similar free magazines…my husband despairs of me as they are in a big messy heap in the kitchen most of the time.  I have to confess to making about 5% of the ones I have but they are good for inspiration.

5. The Hummingbird Bakery’s Cake Days


I just bought this last week…it was such a pretty coloured cover and I love cake so it was a simple impulse buy…I have yet to bake anything from it…still too busy working my way through the freebie recipe cards!

I hope you like my selection and I look forward to looking at everyone else’s…between the Mugs & this weeks Listography, I feel like I have visited all your kitchens…wierd!!

PS…just in case you feel affronted that I have missed the deity that is Delia off my list…I haven’t…See No.4, I have her Waitrose recipe cards…!



The Gallery: Light…cont’d…

…got confused with another linky where you can only post one photo and after having a looksie at other peoples entries, realised I had loads more photos that I always remember for the ‘light’…so sorry, here’s a few belated ones…


This was taken by hubby on our honemoon to Morzine…such a great pic for the fact that I was looking like I could actually snowboard and not on my @$$ as was the case for most of the time, bar this split second!

And after the honeymoon, (…literally) came out firstborn, light of our lives…


Camera Guy was very good at taking pics in those days as it was just the 3 of us, always stopping the car because it was ‘great light’…


Our ‘baby’ looking like an angel with his ‘halo of light’…we have tried to reinact this moment with our subsequent babies but none were quite as perfect as this one…


…and finally this one, always love a children & ice cream photo…


OK…and now I am going to turn the lights off…..and go to bed!

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The Gallery: Light

The Gallery: Light

…I love that these prompts make me slow up a bit and look at daily life through slightly different eyes…so here’s what I’ve come up with…


Always good to appreciate the end of a lovely day….minutes before the chaos of ‘bath, bashing & bed’ ensues! (what it was known as when we were kids…don’t call social services!!)

Pop over to Sticky Fingers to see what other lovely light inspired images are in The Gallery.

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