October 2017 revisited

Out and about...

I took a trip to Ireland at the beginning of the month, which was a bit of an adventure. I’d not really done a holiday where I haven’t had beds booked or a solid plan of destination, so it was quite nice. It was different to be carefree and uncommitted to any given place. I have a mass of photos on my computer relating to this trip which Rayna sat through. We played a game: Where’s Wally? because some of my photos contain my holiday buddy, but he’s hidden on the mountain sides! I haven’t posted any on social media yet, because there really are loads! But here’s my favourite one:

Taken one evening near Letterfrack, Co. Galway.

I’ve been on (another) steam train… Actually, I’ve been on two. One I went with a friend and another I went with my family. Both were very good and I recommend them both.

Onboard the Ffestiniog Railway

I did write a boring blog post about an amazing curry that I had while moaning that I had to wait for 2 hours to get it because of restaurants tricking me with takeaway menus when their eat-in menus are so different. But, amazing curries aren’t the only thing I’m excited about eating this month…

Ok, I’m missing burgers, but after regurgitating a couple (while on strong pain killers), I don’t think I could possibly eat a burger for a very long time. Unfortunately, I have discovered chicken burgers. The chicken burgers are probably a bit healthier than the beef burgers. Or, that’s the lie that I am telling myself.

I’ve also gotten myself a “vegetable sharpener”. Or, a spiraliser. Not a posh one. It’s not an electric one. It’s just one that I can use to sharpen my vegetables to make courgette into long strands like spaghetti. It’s actually quite fun – I get to eat the bits of vegetable that I can’t sharpen, so, I have tried some raw courgette and actually prefer it to cooked courgette!! And, it’s better to eat a lump of carrot than to get another biscuit out…

“Spiralised” (or sharpened) carrot and courgette

I have, until this month, had three knitting projects on the go: a scarf, a shawl and another shawl (which I actually think is a big scarf!). I now have only two knitting projects in progress as I have (finally) completed the scarf. I made a mistake at the end, so I abandoned the pattern that I was working to and I switched to a moss stitch for the remainder of the wool that I had and fashioned a ‘pocket’ that the scarf can roll into. The pattern was repeated over four rows:

Row 1: knit
Row 2: purl
Row 3: k1, k2tog x3, [yo, k1] x6, k2tog x6, [yo, k1] x6, k2tog x6, [yo, k1] x6, k2tog x3, k1
Row 4: knit


I complained to O2 that being an adult sucks. I spent one afternoon looking at house insurance and thinking of ways I can save money. One of the ways was to terminate my contract with O2 and switch to the Pay As You Go option. However, because being an adult sucks, O2 sent me a box of stuff. It was a nice surprise to receive in the post, but Twittering (?) a thank you just wound up with me being unindated with notifications saying “I’m a customer of X years” and “where’s mine?”. All I did was complain being an adult sucks. It’s not my fault that they sent me a nice box of stuff, is it?

The box of stuff from O2

The drinking bottle thing is quite good – it doesn’t leak (LOL) or taste of plastic. I don’t know how the Smart Power Card + thing works, but it’s in my bag. Presumably I will have to charge it after using it…?

A week of Flossie

A week feels more like a month when I’m around certain people. I love spending time with my younger siblings, so I have to tolerate Flossie. Thankfully, Grandad was able to come and I ended up having a flying visit home to see Nanna (who had to stop at home).

The most important thing to emphasise about the last week of October is that Flossie survived. It’s an impressive feat each time.

The kids and I went for a walk – a small walk, because I still can’t do a long walk. Grandad and I sourced a new sofa, and we had a trip on a steam train along a lake. I think the kids definitely had a good time. I enjoyed spending time with them all, that’s for sure. I taught Himmy how to knit, and we made soup together.


I saw my Oncologist and Haematologist this month. I’m guessing at some point in the near future I shall return to see the Gynaecologist, but this hasn’t yet been communicated to me.

The Oncologist is happy, so I’m happy.

My Haematologist is happy, so I’m happy.

I’ve also played the Lotto because the Haematologist said if there were any justice in the world, that I would win. I’m yet to check the ticket. I’m too scared to find out that I’m not a millionaire…



Two hours for a curry…

After my wonderful steam train ride on Thursday, my friend and I decided that we would go foraging for food. Our usual ‘go-to’ place was miles away and would then put us on a route that we didn’t want to take home. It’s a shame, because I did quite fancy trying their hot dogs, since I’ve gone off burgers lately.

My friend and I walked along the road and we stopped outside an Indian restaurant. Reading the menu stirred my appetite. We saw that they even had a meal deal. So, we went inside.

What we hadn’t realised is that had read the takeaway menu and that was cheaper (by 10%) than the eating in menu – I understand that. A 10% discount to take your food away is popular in a lot of places. But, I didn’t understand that the meal deal that I had gotten my hopes up for was not on offer just because I was eating in. So, we got up, apologised to the waiter, and left.

On walking back to the car, my friend and I were talking: why do they lure us in with one menu and then give us another menu? Why?

If a business is having to pay the overheads for their premises, I would have thought that they would want many customers filling their tables? Surely it would be beneficial to put a takeaway and a dining-in menu in the window? Why only put a takeaway menu in the window when people passing by are more likely to be eating in?

So, we went to another Indian restaurant – by now, our goal was to have a curry. It’s what we both wanted. But the second Indian restaurant was again displaying a takeaway menu in the window. To eat in, there was an extra 70p on rice dishes, and an extra £2 on curry dishes. So, we walked out – not having to apologise to anyone as there wasn’t anyone to greet us when we entered the (empty) restaurant.

We decided, eventually, that we would try a takeaway Indian restaurant in the village next to ours. We arrived, placed our orders (my meal, including a drink, was £10.15) and waited for over 40 minutes for our meals to be ready. We brought them back to my house and tucked in…

Two hours after first trying to get a curry, we had our curry. All the recommendations we had received about this particular takeaway weren’t lying – it was a really, really delicious curry. I’m so pleased that we waited for so long to get it!!

A bullet of yesterday

8am I was awake before the alarm but I still set it to snooze as I had a look at Facebook and read a few pages of my Viz annual. I kept an eager eye on the time because I had to brown the stewing steak and add an onion to my pot of vegetables which were waiting to be turned into a beef stew in the crock pot. After having some breakfast (buttered toast), I hot footed it upstairs to wash and dress so that I was out of the door by 9:30am.

10:30am was the time of my appointment. I parked at the park and ride and I was in the clinic for good time. However, I was kept waiting. There were patients before me who needed more time. I probably also took up more time than I was allotted, so I won’t complain. I finally got seen at gone 11:30. My only complaint was that I was sat under the television having to listen to Homes Under the Hammer and whatever drivel followed that. It could have been worse. It could have been Jeremy Kyle. Consultant was happy with what she saw, but that entailed me going onto do another mission…

12:45pm I was getting a bit anxious that I needed to be home for the afternoon, so quickly ditched my retail therapy plan and made a beeline for the pharmacy where I collected my single 150mg dose of Fluconazole for the thrush that the consultant has seen. I have to return tomorrow (or today because this blog post is being published tomorrow) to collect HRT patches. I also purchased some paracetamol as it’s clear that I really do still need them. While waiting for my prescription to be dispensed, I went across the road to the bakery and spent £2.70 on a current slice and a Cornish pasty. I then went home, ate my lunch and browsed Pinterest while I waited for the Avon lady to come with my new lipsticks, etc.

5:45pm I’m home and waiting for someone (else) to call in. During the afternoon, I have been to Lidl (I bought a birthday present), The Range (I bought some personal stationary for myself and browsed kitchen stuff) and to Tesco where I bought what I set out to buy – a ‘gate’ clothes airer for £7. I then called into see the Recycled Teens where we had a catch up of their weekend away and my week away.

6:30pm I have had my guest call round and leave. I have hoovered upstairs and dusted. I haven’t done any real housework in a few weeks and I live under a quarry. Things get dusty and Flossie is coming on the week of the 23rd of October. I don’t want her to be moaning about my “dust” and her asthma. I think it’s tea time now…

8pm It’s time to settle down on the sofa and watch TV. My dinner is eaten, my washing up is done and I have a French Fancy and a cup of tea waiting for me.


I might end up falling asleep on the sofa, or I might actually make it up the stairs.

It’s been quite a dull and unadventurous day, really, hasn’t it? Tomorrow (today) is even duller, with not a plan in sight…



I love the stuff. I have it bought for me from a warehouse because I can’t get enough of it. I probably eat Marmite 5 times a week. Sometimes I eat it every day.

Marmite (French for “casserole dish”) was ‘discovered’ by accident in 1902 by Justus Leibig. It’s healthy – it’s rich in vitamin B12 and folic acid and the more you stir it, the paler it becomes. Marmite was included in the soldiers rations during World War I and (according to newpaper articles ages and ages ago) it might keep away the mosquitoes – that might be why I don’t get bitten all that often 😉

Marmite isn’t just for toast, either. Here’s how I eat it:

  • Marmite coated roast potatoes (or poured over my oven chips)
  • Cheesy Marmite muffins
  • Marmite and cheese straws
  • Add to soups and stews
  • Cheese and Marmite sandwiches
  • Marmite and scrambled egg on toast
  • A spoonful in a mug of boiling water (with bread and butter)

I’m interested in discovering new ways to enjoy Marmite, so please share with me how you like to eat Marmite…

My shiny…

Daily Post: Weekly Photo Challenge.

What is my “ooh, shiny”?

I have many things that make me go weak at the knees – stationary, crafty things, burgers, Formula One, beaches. I don’t think that I can pinpoint one specific thing. I can’t identify a single thing that could be my biggest weakness. For example, I know that with one of my friends, I should steer away from the candle section. She has so many candles in it that the ISS can identify her house when they pass over the UK.

I’d say, though, the one thing that always stops me in my tracks, when looking at a menu, are the burgers. I can honestly say that if I weren’t at the table, someone could confidently order my meal: a burger. I love burgers. I like the different ways they’re served, with the different buns and the different things they put in the buns. I like the different sauces and the different places who put the sauces in the bun or in a pot next to the bun. I like the fact that sometimes I have bacon or cheese or mushrooms in my bun, or a combination (I refuse to have egg). I like the different kinds of burger (as long as they’re not lamb minted ones!) and the different textures. I just love burgers. I think, I can honestly say, that when I’m out at a restaurant, they are my “ooh, shiny” item. I get lost in the menu, exploring the different burgers.


“Bit piggy?”

I was conversing with Flossie via text the other day. She informed me that she was having a McDonald’s for lunch. From my observations, this isn’t just a bog standard meal. This is a large meal with a few burgers on the side.

I reply to her text to say that I was having a cheese and pickle sandwich, apple, crisps and two yogurts. What I failed to mention was that the two yogurts make one standard size one.

Her response was: “Two yogurts? That’s a bit piggy, isn’t it?”

Inspiring myself to eat

Usually I’m all about the food, but, these past few weeks, I feel that I need to be motivated and inspired to even open my fridge. I was wondering earlier “what are the best dinners I’ve had?” – I rather hoped that one of those meals would inspire me (and yes, it has!).

11115771_10155437923345434_6370014121688157387_nI’ll be honest – I like food that isn’t good for me. I like fish and chips, hot dogs, sausage rolls, crisps, cake, chocolate, chocolate cake, chips… But my #1 go to food is a burger. If I am in a restaurant and I cannot decide on what to eat, I will always pick a burger and hope that I’m not going to be disappointed.

The best burger that I have eaten (not the one pictured) was last year, on my birthday, in a roadside diner. To be honest, those roadside diners aren’t really the type of place that I would choose to eat at but the person I was with recommended it, so we went there. I wasn’t disappointed.

Right now, I’m looking forward to having a burger on Sunday. I have some in my fridge waiting to go on my BBQ.

So, Sunday’s dinner is planned. What about tonight’s?

11541011_10155735411400434_144120354231359204_nI like curries. I don’t like them stupidly hot. I prefer milder ones – a chicken tikka masala does me just fine. I either defrost a pitta bread from my fridge, or I open a packet of ready salted crisps to dunk into it. I’d prefer a “pomp-a-dom”, but opening a packet for just me is a bit of a waste.

I’ve learnt to make a half-decent curry (if I do say so myself) but the best curry I’ve ever eaten have been made by our west country family friends. Unfortunately, I don’t have the freezer space to make one for myself, and I really don’t want to be over-phased by a big pot of the stuff, so I have a £1 ready meal waiting for me to lovingly cook in the microwave.

13590320_10157165416845434_1230712252449396403_nI’ve had ready meals before. However, since living alone, I’ve tried to avoid them in favour of cooking my own ‘ready meals’. I can make them cheaper, know what I’ve put in them, and use less salt than what the boxes say are in the supermarket made ones. Unfortunately, life at the moment means that I’m probably better off with a selection of them in the freezer, and they really aren’t that bad! I had a roast dinner one last night – it was absolutely delicious. I was actually quite disappointed to finish it, but all nice things must end.

The photo that I’ve included are some ready meals that I made for myself – roast chicken dinners. Nothing beats it being home made – the best ones were cooked by Grandma and continue to be cooked by Nanna and a popular roast-dinner-restaurant-chain. But my £1 dinner wasn’t too shabby.