Friday, November 22, 2013

Quick Chat...

As my blogs are always written first thing in a morning, this is a one-off as it is nearly 10.30pm. It's just that I've been busy both yesterday and today what with all the cooking etc, and tomorrow will be another full day of kitchen activity as the social club are now expecting 60 -70 people for their 'music night' and I've only made enough for 50 (original number given to me) so tomorrow will have to do more baking.
So thought I'd just grab a few moments to catch up with comments, as I feel guilty if readers are waiting for a reply and I've disappeared!!  But after this late blog today, won't be back again until Sunday.  Still, not long to wait, time moves fast the older we get.

The mushrooms are still coming up Granny G, and your comment reminded me of one time when I used to grow some in a boxed kit (as I'm doing now), and once they had cropped (think three lots eventually came up in the one box), threw the 'tired' mushroom compost onto the garden border.  The next year - a good 10 months after - I suddenly saw another lot of mushrooms growing there, think it was late autumn, this being the time that mushroom usually appear all over the place, so perhaps worth letting the old compost dry out again, then next year I'll be covering it with fresh damp soil, and see if I get more crops.

A welcome to ali59.  Am always amazed that people remember The Goode Kitchen series, and am thrilled when people write in to let me know.  As you can see, I've still got tunnel vision when it comes to cost-cutting cookery, and although it is harder now to come up with new ideas and recipes, there are plenty to refer to in the Archives of this blog, even I am surprised at how good some of them were (modesty not being one of my strong points).

I too have bought chicken thighs from Barton Grange Eileen, and think they are very good value.  I will look out for the Romanesco when we next go (which I hope will be next week or the week after), they are so pretty to look at I hate having to eat them.  Cannot believe that anything so exceptionally beautiful in design can be just an accident of nature.

Goodness me Pam, how you have brought it all back to me.  Glitter Wax.  I'd forgotten all about it, but we played with it for hours.  Is Plasticine still sold?  Use to have a lot of fun with that to, and can still remember its smell. 
How sad that Corrie and EastEnders has been removed from your TV circuit.  It's particularly good at the moment (always is around Christmas time).

Loved reading that saying you sent Lizzie..."something they want, something they need, something to wear, something to read".   But does that mean they want all four from one person, or one gift from four different people?  Perhaps if they need a new T shirt to wear, and it is in the style they want, and it has something printed on it, it covers all the requests? That's me thinking frugally of course (some might call it being mean).

It's sad really how life today means that many things we used to enjoy doing, now cause us stress. Much of this is to do with the pressure caused by advertising etc, making us believe we should do this that or the other, even worse spend, spend, spend....!!! 
Shopping for food for the festive season can be stressful, and am not sure what I would suggest because Australia (where you live) would not be eating the same foods as we would during the colder months.  Or is Christmas celebrated with turkey, Christmas Pud etc, exactly as we do here?

Anyone wishing to buy a month's food at a time (or even two months....) might find the first few postings of this blog (from Sept 2006 - March 2007) would give some pointers.  Several of the early weeks postings have disappeared due to lack of space (blogger did this, not me), but there is enough left to show the challenge I had set myself - to spend £250 on food and then see how long it would last me without having to shop again.  True, the actual challenge did begin immediately Christmas was over, but the idea would work at any time.  It lasted 10 weeks, and because of the bulk buys, the final total averaged out at £25.00 a week for the two of us.  And not frugally at all, we ate very well indeed.  So plenty of room for improvement if anyone wishes to do the same - but cheaper.  Just use my purchases as a guide (I gave a list - which I hope is still there, and what I made from them).

I will shortly be giving some recipes for very easy to make sweets, but not today as it's just about my bedtime.  Hopefully will find some to give on Sunday.

Thanks Sarina for your lovely comment as it brought back memories of how a real old fashioned Christmas was and still could be.  In today's commercial world, the simple things like board games turn out to be more fun than computer games.  And the smell of home-cooking, not to mention the pleasure of eating such goodies is worth far more than a table laden with food that has be manufactured and processed to within an inch of its life.

There are times I fear for this world, at least the way 'normal' life is going.  Seems that the word 'selfies' has ended up in the dictionary. I'd never even heard of it, but apparently it is what youngsters keep doing these days, taking photos of themselves with their mobile phone, then putting it onto Facebook or other such internet meeting places.   They then wait to see how many 'likes' they get.  Does that smack of vanity? I don't know.  What I do know is that if they get a lot of 'don't likes' this will then lower their self-esteem, and goodness knows what they would do then.  We hear of youngsters now committing suicide when someone sends messages (or tweets or whatever they are called) saying nasty things about them.

My own self-confidence went down the drain completely when I was a teenager, and this because I had grown very tall (nearly 6ft when every other girl didn't seem much more than 5ft 3").  My mother was really good-looking, and so often people would say to me "what a pity you take after your father" (who was the spitting image of Captain Mainwaring in Dad's Army), and even my mum used to say "what a pity you have to wear glasses" (and the common expression then was "a boy never makes passes at girls who wear glasses"). I was told not to stand up straight (because my developing boobs became too apparent for my mother who frowned on things like that and suggested I walk with a bit of a stoop when I was with her).  Believe me, all that was enough to make me feel a freak (and I've never really felt otherwise), so why on earth anyone would want to parade their looks for the world to see, even if they were pretty. 

Surely there must be more to life than the continual clutching of mobile phones in the hand, putting them to ears continually, or tapping away texting to first one and then another.  Maybe in 20 years of so there will be no need for anyone to leave their homes again, and maybe not even leave their own personal bedroom.  Just sit on the bed with a mobile phone and a pizza that someone has shoved through the door, and what more is there in life to want?
But then who am I to criticise?  I seem to be glued to the TV for more hours than I care to think about.  At least it is generally 'educational' (by that I mean mainly cookery progs, or quiz shows such as Eggheads, Pointless, University Challenge...).  I've even begun missing a few Corries and E.Enders and find I can pick it up again without having lost the plot next time I watch. 

You'll have to forgive this rather bitty blog, but am not used to writing this late at night, and when it comes to writing about frugal food, even then I'm not always sure which way to deal with it.  None of us are the same, all dancing to a different tune, but hopefully keeping in step when it matters.
I'm nearly nodding off over the keyboard, so will say good-night, and, if everything goes well, will be back with you again on Sunday.  Enjoy your weekend.  TTFN.