Monday, August 06, 2012

Old Habits...

What a great day yesterday turned out to be. In the three events I was watching, GB won two golds, four silvers and one bronze medal, so maybe others were won in other events. Will have to keep watching today. Great win for Andy Murray and was sorry he only got silver in the mixed doubles (although felt his partner let him down a bit).

The weather here in Morecambe was absolutely gorgeous. Hardly any wind and the sun shining all day. Perfect for swimming, and B said there were over 100 swimmers, and together with their family and friends, the social club was swamped with people going in for the food (some of the public too I believe). All the cakes went and the one I thought would be least liked (the chocolate and beetroot brownies), everybody was raving over.
The club ran out of baps, for their bacon butties, so B had to dash to Morrison's to buy loads more. Altogether a very successful day both here and in the various Olympic venues.

Apparently part of the UK got flooded (again) by thunderstorms with torrential rains. We must have been close to the edge of that we we heard all that thunder the evening before. Today woke to heavy rain here, but it has since stopped and the dark grey clouds are moving off to the east to rain elsewhere no doubt, and the sky looks a bit brighter on the horizon, but not a lot. Still no wind to speak of at ground level but the clouds are moving fast, so with any luck the sun will eventually break through and dry off the humidity that seems to have returned.

Not that it matters, the 'swimathon' went very well indeed, as did the social club's funds no doubt, so am well pleased.

Didn't do all the clearing up I intended yesterday as Andy Murray's match was on a couple of hours earlier than advertised, so stayed to watch that instead, and the moment it had finished B arrived back home, so I ended up chatting about the swim, food etc, and then watched more of the Games.
This means today is 'clear up' day. Also have to work out how much the ingredients cost to make the foods sent to the club over the two days, and email this to the organiser who will then pay B later this week.
Not sure what supper will be tonight, have to sort that out later. B has already had a third of the trifle I made yesterday. Unfortunately the strawberry and cream EasyYo didn't set in time, and although I added more hot water and left it overnight, it still isn't as thick as I hoped it would be - and that after 24 hours! Can at least use it, so not really a problem. Might turn some of it into frozen yogurt. Who knows, might even invent a new use for it.

Thanks Eileen for your comment. It was a good idea of yours to dip your chicken into buttermilk before dipping into flour. Will probably make a lot more use of yogurt in this way instead of the more usual flour, egg, and crumbing.
Am sure the wet weather we have been having has been perfect for slugs and snails. We keep finding them scattered over the living room carpet, usually when we follow their trails of slime there is a dead slug at the end of it (they have to use too much slime to get over the carpet and think this dehydrates them).
The man who lives in a house at the back of us says he has hedgehogs in his garden, and B saw one in ours the other day (first seen here), but we need a LOT of 'hogs' to gobble up all the slugs. I've given up growing veggies because of them, the slugs eat the lot overnight!

Forgot to mention the programme about the Amish that was on the other night. Very interesting, but confusing in that the family lived under the very strict rules of the Amish, but still managed to have a phone available at their recently purchased farm, although this 'didn't count' as it was in a small wooden shed some 100 or so yards away from the house.
Prior to the farm the husband worked (managed or even owned?) a construction firm that used heavy vehicles, and he was 'allowed' to go to work in a car as long as it belonged to someone else. car. Everywhere else his transport was by the usual pony and trap.
Seemed there was no problem shopping in the large supermarket along with the rest of the public, and they also went to a pizza parlour for a meal out, so perhaps the Amish are now catching up a bit if not completely 'moving with the times'.

As you know I get irritated by certain words continually being used. Like 'iconic' being last year's word to be used as often as possible. This year it is 'epic', spoken by every presenter and in many adverts, and now 'massive' is in almost every sentence spoken by Matt Baker (if that is his name, he usually presents The One Show).
As an older person, find it very hard keeping up with modern parlance, and for ages have been puzzled by many. Have managed to work out that 'slo-mo' is a short form of 'slow motion', but for the life of me cannot work out what 'mo-jo' means as in "he's lost his mo-jo". Am sure at least one reader will know, so please tell.

Many words used to use when I was a child now mean something completely different, so now have almost to think twice before I say something in case it means something rude (or even obscene) to a younger person. Let us hope that 'super-dooper, and jolly hollysticks' hasn't yet turned into something we'd rather not know about.

Better get back to writing what I'm supposedly here for....
As I've now run out of many baking ingredients, have to decide whether to order from Tesco, or take a trip to Morrison's and scoot round there. Trouble is, when actually in store, I get very easily tempted and have not the self-control to stop adding one or two extra 'treats' to those already in the basket. As I have at least three vouchers to use at Tesco - one alone being more than the delivery charge - might as well make use of them, and if I don't order too much, might end up paying very little anyway. Talked myself into shopping on-line again, haven't I?

As it's been ages since I last ordered, with less than £10 spent during the last few weeks as top up for eggs, milk, fresh fruit and salads etc, think I've proved again that 'using up what I've got' does help to save a lot of money. There are those that will say "well, you've spent the money anyway buying the foods you are using up", and of course this is true, but as regular readers will know, my reasonably meagre food budget is never exceeded each month, and more often spend a lot less, so with two or three months of each year 'using up stores' with hardly any shopping done at that time, this can mean several hundred ££££s of 'food budget' that never left my purse. These savings all add up, and since we moved here three years ago have worked out that I've probably saved more than £1,000 by 'making do', without any loss of meal quality. Thank goodness for that as I need the extra money to help pay to keep the house warm.

With plenty of space now left in the chest freezer drawers, time for another 'stock taking' and see what is lacking. Or should I need to bother, for if there is still plenty there (plus all that in the other freezer (bursting to overflowing), perhaps best I make use of the space by making more 'ready-meals' that can be frozen, plus 'treats' like home-make ice-cream, eclairs etc, and maybe Sticky Toffee Pudding et al for B's enjoyment.
With another baking session due in two weeks (for the club again), worth me making some cakes now to freeze to save me time later.

Wish I could bite the bullet and use up nearly all the food in store, then just live with a couple of kitchen cupboards (above the units), holding just the 'necessary' (coffee, tea, cereals, and assorted canned foods and jars). Plus a few items in the fridge and vegetable basket. Loads of people seem to manage with only a few ingredients, unfortunately I'm not one of them, and am unlikely to change as long as I have someone to cook for (and the more the merrier).

Would it have been different if I'd chosen a different 'career' other than cooking? Possibly would have less in my cupboards, but am sure I would always keep a reasonable stock as this was the way my mother was, her 'food reserves' came in very handy during the war - and after that she always liked to have a couple of weeks 'reserves' in her cupboard 'just in case'.
Even when married and - like most wives and mothers - we went shopping nearly every day to buy the food for the evening meal, I still liked to keep a reasonable stock in store to help out when money was tight (as it often was in those days). Thank goodness for cans of baked beans, for at the end of the week (or month depending on when B paid me my 'housekeeping') the last day, or couple of days if a month, meant the children usually had beans on toast for lunch and again for supper. This habit of relying on baked beans when there was no money in my purse is probably why I still stock up with eight cans of beans when I still have four cans left on my shelf. Old habits die hard they say.

Sky is definitely getting much brighter. Still mainly overcast but a hint of blue now and again, so fingers crossed...
Not sure what the weather will be like down in London this coming week, but considering how bad it has been this year, it certainly cleared up enough for most of the Games to be enjoyed in quite a bit of sunshine and not a lot of rain. Let us hope it stays like this as it must be pretty miserable doing track events (or anything open air - other than water sports - in pouring rain.

Although only just after 9.00am will love you and leave you for today as want to get rid of most of the chores before I settle down to more 'Game watching' (with possibly a bit of Food Network thrown in).

(before I forget, I did check Channel 47 (thanks Mabel for telling me about this) and it did come up on the screen, showing one of the Channel 4 progs. Will have to see if I can find out via the Internet what programmes are shown each day, then I can watch any Superscrimpers and other programmes I missed but wanted to watch).

Hope you all had a good weekend, and didn't get caught up in that extreme bad weather across a strip of the UK yesterday). Look forward to meeting up with you all again tomorrow. See you then.