Winter’s log, earthdate 201604.05

09.27 am

OK, I have to write really, really fast this morning, as I’m not going to get much of a chance later on. Julian has gone to deliver my favourite eldest daughter to yet another appointment, and will then be bringing her back here for the day – then instead of dropping her back home this evening, her husband Neale is joining us all here for dinner tonight, so writing time is going to be meager, at best! (but I’ll try to fit everything in for you all, you lucky people, you! 😉 )

What happened yesterday. Erm… Julian and I sort-of got stuck into doing a lot of itty-bitty quests together, which unfortunately chewed up most of the day – but we did get through a lot, and only died once! My fault as usual – at one point, we were so hard pressed that in sheer desperation, I fired off an AOE (“Area Of Effect” shot – it targets multiple, but largely random, mobs, which has the unfortunate side effect of pulling in a lot more mobs who would otherwise have ignored the fight – and you!) and… we died. Oh well, death in WoW is largely fleeting – you do get better! 🙂 Then it was afternoon, Josh came over and I had my hair done, and then it was dinner time. Because there was nothing much to watch on TV, we decided to watch one of our last remaining episodes of “Foyle’s War” (which has been a truly excellent series!) which would have finished early enough for me to write my blog last night. I say “which would have”, because then the phone started ringing! All in all, we took three calls, none of which were the sort that only took a minute or two. So by the time Foyle’s War finished, it was pretty late – as you could see from the time stamp on last night’s brief sentence! Oh well… As I said – I’m gunna have to write fast this morning, and hope that my favourite eldest daughter is kept waiting the customary half hour or so, by the inestimable Dr. B.! 😉

Oh, remember I was talking about fish ponds and aquariums? And especially marine aquariums? There’s a certain type of marine fish that I’ve always coveted – they’re gorgeous, and I call them “Paisley Fish”, because to me they look as though their skin (scales?) are made from a beautiful paisley pattern. That’s not their real name, of course, that’s just what I like to call them. Their real name is “Mandarin Dragonet“, or, if you want to appear more learned, “Synchiropus splendidus”. I found them by Googling “marine fish paisley”, would you believe, which led me to this – and viola, as the French say, there they were! They come in a lot more colours than the ones in the linked pictures – the ones I saw and fell in love with – so many years ago in the decorative display marine aquarium at a Chinese Restaurant – were a creamy colour, with a brilliant jade and gold “paisley” pattern all over them – they were so beautiful, like little, living, jewelled brooches! And by the way, might I just mention here that I totally hate, loathe, and detest, Pinterest? I have absolutely no interest in signing up with that horrible site, but every time I go looking for “images”, or “photos”, that revolting place always comes up with the best examples of what I’m looking for (see above!) which I can never see properly because they keep sticking their [please insert foul word of your choice in here!] “sign-up” screed, on a black background, right in front of me, which gets bigger if you try to scroll down, and there seems to be no way to remove it, other than signing up with them – which I do not want to do! What do they think I’m going to do? Steal their ruddy images? The most I’d do (because I hate them so much) is put in a ruddy link to them (which I’ve done here, curse me for a fool!)

Anyway, Julian and my favourite eldest daughter have arrived – I’ll finish this late-ish tonight (I hope!)

10.24 pm

Right, here I am again – and I might even get this finished before midnight, for a change! 😉  Well, Lee and I had a good day – we watched one episode of “The 100” – the only one we had, and then we watched multiple episodes of “Arrow” for the rest of the day – aww! Oliver’s mother got killed :/ Julian went off and did a bit more shopping for dinner tonight, because Lee and Neale were staying for dinner. I knew there wasn’t very much Banana Cake left, so I persuaded Julian to make a different sort of cake for dessert, as we had no more “over-ripe” bananas (in fact the old song “yes, we have no bananas, we have no bananas today!” sprang to mind this morning! We had to have a naked (as in a totally banana-less) breakfast this morning! It was terrible! 😉 ) I tried to find a copy of a delicious Almond cake that he made last year, which was absolutely super delicious, and made with mostly almond meal, but alas – I have no idea where I put it – it’s probably somewhere in either the “AAA-All 2015 Folders” directory, or in the “AAA-All 2014 Folders” one – and on further thought, it’s probably in the 2014 one, because we moved here in mid 2015, and I seem to recall that the weather was warm when he did make it, and that it was “later on” in the year, so it must have been 2014… or maybe even 2013… Who cares! It was a wonderful cake, and I’ll move heaven and earth to either find the copy, or find it on the ‘Net somewhere (in fact I think I actually found it in a magazine – so I’ll also look through all my back-copies of all my “Foodie” magazines! See, Julian?! I told you there was a good reason for keeping all those old magazines! 😉 ) In the end, I went back to an old, old recipe that came out of the Ark – my mother got it from a Polish friend of hers, and she got it from her mother, etc., etc. – you know the way it goes! 🙂 It’s a non-yeast recipe for a Babka, and it’s been adapted many times over the years. In the contemporary version, you put everything except the flour into a Vitamizer (they’re known as Food Processors these days) whizz everything up, pour it into the flour, stir well, pour it into a ring tin, and bake for about 35 minutes. There are lots of variations that we used to use, from sprinkling Nescafe crystals in the middle of it, to adding orange zest to the mixture, and dobbing teaspoons of marmalade in the middle. You can find my family recipe for it here. So, that’s what Julian made! At my insistence, he made a cinnamon sugar mixture, which we sprinkled into the middle of the mixture (pour half the mixture into the tin, shake it even, sprinkle whatever you’re using, making sure you don’t get any on the side of the tin, then pour in the rest of the mixture – it works, trust me!) So, speaking of cakes an’ all, I suppose I should hurry up and get onto…

Food stuffz! Last night we had pan-fried chicken breast on a bed of steamed rice with finely chopped spring onions, and half a home-grown tomato for dinner, and for dessert I had a small bowl of the yummy Coles-brand, very low-calorie, Rice Pudding, and a small slice of Banana Cake. For lunch today, I had a Coles-brand (again!) whole-grain, seed crusted bread, with sandwich-sliced roast beef, sliced home-grown tomato, shredded lettuce, and Halloumi cheese, and it was scrumptious! Dinner tonight was slow-cooked Corned Silverside, mashed potatoes, green beans, and half a store-bought Roma tomato, and everyone declared the Corned Silverside extremely good! For dessert, we all had a slice of the Cinnamon-sugared Babka, with a small amount of thickened light cream. It was so very nice – and exactly as I remembered it – I’m making it next time! 🙂

Weigh-in yesterday and this morning. Well, it seems like all my tummy gurgles are paying off! 🙂 Though mind you, after mashed potato and cake tonight, I’ll probably go up again *sigh* but I guess that’s just par for the course! Yesterday (Monday) morning I went from 64.0kg to 63.7kg – down three points… and this morning (Tuesday) I went from 63.7kg to 63.5kg – down another two points, which is all good, and I’m both very pleased, and very relieved to be going down again! No doubt I’ll go up a bit tomorrow, but I don’t think I’ll be too distraught – I’m pretty sure it’ll go down again – eventually! 😉

And that pretty much sums up my two days! We were going shopping tomorrow, but it seems like my very favourite youngest daughter will be coming over for a visit, so the shopping might have to wait until Thursday or Friday. On the WoW side of things, Wynterthyme now has six quests to do for the Stables, which I’ll attempt to get done before Kate arrives – I mean, how long can it take, to kill three large, scary monsters, whilst sitting on a terrified mount?! 😉 Actually, they’re called “Training your mount” quests… And that’s about where everything’s up to at the moment, so once more it’s time to tell you all that that’s about it from me for tonight! Do drop in again tomorrow night – I’m hoping to be able to start writing early enough to do it all in one coherent block, rather than in this somewhat disjointed and rambling fashion, so that you can find out all about what Wynterthyme’s been up to, if there’s still any Babka left, and how my mercurial weight’s going. Until then however, please make an attempt to bee good, remember that many of life’s failures are people who didn’t realize how close they were to success when they gave up, and don’t forget to keep warm – or cool – depending on the weather, to always drive carefully, and to look after yourselves… but above all, please don’t forget to stay safe! 🙂 ciao, all! 🙂

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