29 October 2012

What are you Reading?

I've been making my way through a load of "Freebies" from Kindle but then remembered I'd bought this book when I first got my Kindle last Christmas.

House of Silence by Linda Gillard.

"My friends describe me as frighteningly sensible, not at all the sort of woman who would fall for an actor. And his home. And his family."

Orphaned by drink, drugs and rock n’ roll, Gwen Rowland is invited to spend Christmas at her actor boyfriend Alfie's family home - a ramshackle Tudor manor in Norfolk. She's excited about the prospect of a proper holiday with a proper family, but soon after she arrives, Gwen notices something isn't quite right. Alfie acts strangely toward his family and is reluctant to talk about the past. Alfie's mother, a celebrated children's author, keeps to her room, living in a twilight world, unable to distinguish between past and present, fact and fiction. And then there's the enigma of an old family photograph... 

When Gwen discovers fragments of forgotten family letters sewn into an old quilt, she starts to piece together the jigsaw of the past and realises there's much more to the family history than she's been told. It seems there are things people don’t want her to know.

And one of those people is Alfie.

28 October 2012

The end of summer

It was officially the end of British Summer Time today as the clocks went back an hour.  It now means driving home from work in the dark.  Still the darker nights always mean Bonfire night is coming and so is Christmas.

I spent my extra hour today walking Moss around the pond. I love all the autumn colours at the moment.  Won't be long till they've all gone too.

 There were loads of these toadstool/mushrooms around today.  It was hard to see some of them amongst the leaves.

Hidden Veg Tomato Sauce

This is a great way of getting vegetables into unsuspecting teenagers!!  It makes a great base for pizza or sauce for pasta.  Recipe is from Annabel Karmel.  Wish I'd had her books when Samuel was little.

Hidden Veg Tomato Sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
100g/4oz carrots, peeled and grated
50g/2oz courgette, grated
50g/2oz button mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
400g/14oz passata (ready-sieved tomatoes)
1 teaspoon soft brown sugar
1 vegetable stock cube, dissolved in 400ml (2/3 pint) boiling water
handful fresh basil leaves
salt & pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a saucepan, add the crushed garlic and sauté for a few seconds then add the onion and sauté for a further 2 minutes. Add the carrots, courgettes and mushrooms and sauté for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the balsamic vinegar and cook for one minute. Stir in the passata and sugar, cover and simmer for 8 minutes. Add the vegetable stock and cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously. Add the basil and season to taste. Transfer to a blender and blitz until smooth.
The added advantage of this recipe is that it seems to work out okay on approximate timings, if you forget to set a timer (that would be me who constantly forgets to set the timer ...). Also, I should think it would work the same on any other combination of veg.

27 October 2012

Saturday doings

Only two days left before it's back to work.  Still not to worry it's only another 2 months till we're on holiday again!!
In an attempt to make the most of the day I've kept myself busy.

I played taxi driver for the teenage one so he could go shooting.  It's a bit chiller than last time hence the woolly hat.

Ordered some new boots for the winter.  Lined for extra toasty toes.

Made Hidden Veg Tomato Sauce - Anything to get veg into the previously mentioned teenager - Recipe to follow

Tidied the kitchen.  Please ignore the state of the windows.  They are due to be plastered next weekend.
(They've only been like that for the last year so another week won't do them any harm!!)

I made a Christmas decoration.
and home made pizzas

I helped with some art homework.  I had thought the days of making things from pasta were over............but it seems not.  This now has to be painted at school!!

I watched Strictly Come Dancing and Merlin.  I like Merlin but Morgana is beginning to get on my nerves!!

and I did some of my crochet blanket, which by the time I have finished will be the biggest one to date!!  I think I may have overdone the size.

How was your Saturday?

25 October 2012

Don't work too hard

Mum went home yesterday and before she went she said "Don't work too hard"!

Does this count as a quiet day?

  • Drove Mum to the train station
  • Put the bins out for collection (new system means a new bin!)
  • Put some washing on
  • Blogged for a bit
  • Stripped 3 beds and re-made 2
  • Did some ironing
  • Listened to Radio 2 and managed a pathetic 9 points on PopMaster!!
  • Did some shopping
  • Walked to the bank (which was shut for lunch!!)
  • Made the supper
  • Stacked the dishwasher
  • Drove Samuel to the local town for his Wednesday sports.
  • Came home and made tea and toast and watched Elementary on TV
  • Tidied up before going to bed for a read.
  • Lights out!!!

24 October 2012

New to Blogland

Meet my Mum.  She's very new to blogging but has taken the plunge with the rest of us.

Pop on over to One Beginner's Place and say hi.

22 October 2012

It's too early!!

This morning Mum, Samuel and I walked along to Baxter's to eat one (or two) of their delicious pancakes.

 I had noticed a few weeks ago that they already had their Christmas shop up and running.

It all looks very nice but..............................It's too early!!  We haven't had Halloween or Bonfire Night yet!!!

The man on the left walked straight into shot as I pressed the button. Naughty man!!

21 October 2012


Today the sun came out for the first time all week and in an effort to make the most of it I bundled Mum, Samuel and the dog into the car and headed off to Millbuies.

The colours there are amazing just now and the sky was blue.
 This is my favourite shot of the day.
 More colour.  It won't be long before all the leaves have gone.  They were falling like crazy at one point.

17 October 2012


More brownies anyone?  I'm just about to make a third batch since Saturday.  Someone keeps eating them all!!!

16 October 2012

Halloween crochet

I saw some knitted pumpkins on Facebook last night (http://www.facebook.com/MissPitchyPatchy) and thought I could do that.
 They didn't take very long (probably longer than they should but I was watching True Blood at the same time!!) and turned out OK.
The girl on Facebook charges £5.00 each for hers which I think is Waaaaaaaay overpriced.  I know they are all handmade but come on..........How much?

15 October 2012

Hello Monday

Hello to the first week of the Tattie holidays.

Hello to my Mum coming to stay for a week.
Hello to coffee and chatting.

Hello to doing lots of crafting and not much house work.

Hello to opening a bank account for The Teenage One.

Hello to taking Moss to see the old folk.

13 October 2012


Look ........................... No Grey!!!
My hairdresser is a miracle worker :0)

11 October 2012

Mrs Tiggywinkle

Today at work we had an unexpected visitor.  Some first year girls found an injured hedgehog on the path on the way to school and brought it to the office.

We asked the janitors to put it in a box and look after it until the SSPCA arrived to take it away.  Unfortunately it really wasn't very well so they decided to take it to the vet where the vet checked it over.  Sadly it was too poorly so had to be put to sleep.  It was a shame as it was a cute little thing.

All pupils were anti-bacterialised before heading off to class!!

10 October 2012

A Girlie Day Out

Last Saturday the girls at work had a day out, (without kids and hubbies), and headed off to Inverness.  We all got different trains and did our own shopping etc before meeting up later on in the day.

My friend June and I started our day with a manicure......
followed by coffee and a bite to eat.  This was then followed by some shopping.  I have to say at this point I only bought a mascara and June didn't buy anything!!

We did however have time to try on some fur coats.....Here's me looking like a demented Dalmatian!!
and some very BIG hats.
 I think June wins that round :0)

After all that excitement we thought it best to go and have a wee glass of vino before meeting up with the others for a meal and a chat.
We met them in Hootenannies which smelt like a sweaty old folks home and was reeeeally basic.  The only thing missing was the sawdust on the floor!!
but from there we went on to the Mustard Seed Restaurant where we had a really lovely meal. 
Next stop before the train home was a cocktail bar, where I seem to have been caught unawares!!
It's a long time since I've been out drinking and it was an eye opener to be sober when all around you are a little bit tiddly.
Still it didn't stop me having fun on the train on the way home.