A few more household hints and tips Part Three

Are you conscious of killing germs at the moment?  How is your remote control looking?  A splash of hand sanitizer on a piece of kitchen towel will do wonders for your remote controls.  A cotton bud can help get to the trick.

Want your undies to smell nicer?  Take a coffee filter and fill it with a little bicarbonate of soda and some essential oils.  Lavender or orange sound good.  Tie it with an elastic band and pop it in those drawers.

Want to keep your bread fresh?  Pop a clean potato in the bread bin.

Just had a cup of ground coffee?  When the grains have cooled down use them on your hands as an exfoliator.

Got dry skin on your face?  Try a mayonnaise mask and leave it on for 20 minutes.

Feeling tired?  Whilst watching TV, roll a tennis ball under your feet.  A bit of a revival.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How are lovers coping during lockdown?

I was just reading about lovers making love in a supermarket car park.

None of my friends have admitted to having a secret lover in their senior years. But it set me thinking. How would you contact each other with your spouse in lockdown with you? Would you have a secret phone? Would it be hidden and switched off? Would you have a secret email address? How would you access your lovers messages with your spouse looking over your shoulder, especially a jealous partner or worse still, an abusive one you were planning to escape from prior to lockdown, with or without the support of a lover.

Meeting up in a hotel has become impossible. Meeting up in a bar or cinema is a no go. Even if you get to meet up in a mutual friends house/garden, Should you be using your mutual friend’s wine glasses and cutlery? Surely you wouldn’t dare kiss and hug your lover in case you unknowingly have the virus and his daughter has just had a baby and vice versa?

Would you risk it for a quickie in a car park or in the woods? I know I wouldn’t, but many people are young, energetic and miss a good sex life, or maybe just a bit of romance that is missing at home.

It’s a difficult time for everyone. Most especially those grieving for their loved ones lost to this terrible virus but lovers must feel a little helpless and wondering if it’s all worth the risk.
Continue reading “How are lovers coping during lockdown?”

Look where we are today

The boss went to look for carpets and bathroom cabinets and came home with doormats and would you believe it, real cactus fridge magnets. She just dumped us in the room with the packing boxes! We don’t even know where our new downmarket friend from Marks and Spencer is.

Oops, looks like he has fell asleep next to the new mattress.

She cares more about her silly new cactus than us.

Moving home

My boss has moved to a new flat in the same postcode but a quieter area. She’s going to be 70 this year and so slow at unpacking. My name is Tedward from Hamleys toy store in Regent Street in London. I’m the one with the brown bow. My best friend, Edward from upmarket department store Harrods in Knightsbridge is opposite me but I have been forced to share with Christmas bear from Marks and Spencer. There really is no accounting for taste! There’s a bed made up in the spare room and we were so comfortable sitting on the pillows, socially distanced as it’s currently called, when she decided to have a nap. She ordered a super luxury bed which arrived today for the main bedroom but she hasn’t bought carpet yet, so we have been turfed out next to all the boxes and upturned mattress. Wish I was born in Toy Story.

Anyone think CBT therapy works?

During a difficult period in my life shortly after my 84 year old mother died, I volunteered for CBT therapy. I trained as a psychotherapist but didn’t take my final exams because of reasons I won’t bore you with. I already knew about the deep breathing techniques and used them when I had a panic attack. Apparently panic attacks are more likely to happen in the morning when our bodies use adrenaline to let us know it’s time to wake up. I went for CBT therapy for a few weeks and found it a bit daft to be honest. What I did gain from it was to put my worries in a suitcase to deal with for only 15 minutes a day and then send the suitcase down the river. This helped me enormously. I plucked up the courage to ask my therapist how old she was and when she qualified. She, like myself, hadn’t qualified and was a student. So was that the blind leading the blind!

Anyone out there have experience of CBT therapy you are willing to share?

A Poem for the end of Winter

A Poem for the end of Winter

SPRING IS ROUND THE CORNER

February is on its way

The end of winter, I suppose

Still lots of days completely grey.

Crocuses will burst through

The early morning dew

Hyacinths and snowdrops too.

March winds will soon blow

Daffodils may sway

Huddled together

Avoiding the last of the snow.

Cheese Quoits for a Soup Topping

Why not liven up tinned soup with these delicious cheese rings.

Ingredients:-

6 ounces of plain flour

Half a teaspoon of cream of tartar

Half a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda

Half a teaspoon of salt

A sprinkle of black pepper OR cayenne powder if you like things spicy

Half an ounce of fresh butter

2 ounces of cream cheese

2 or 3 tablespoons of milk

A little beaten egg

2 tablespoons of grated Cheddar cheese

Method:-

Sift the powdered ingredients into a bowl. Rub in the cream cheese and butter until it resembles breadcrumbs. Blend with milk to a soft dough. With light strokes, roll out fairly thin and use a round cutter to make rings. Brush over with egg and dip into the grated cheese. Bake in a moderately hot oven for 10-12 minutes. They should be nicely risen and golden coloured. Re-roll some of the leftover pastry if you wish to make more. Serve piping hot on top of soup, tinned or homemade.

My husband’s Pomfret fish curry

The ideal size for a Pomfret is between 475 to 500 grams. Its delicate, white flesh lends itself admirably to several cuisines. It is found in the deep Indian ocean, therefore the catch is small resulting in a high demand.This pushes the price up.

My husband bought frozen ones from our local fishmonger, Golborne Fisheries in the famous Notting Hill.  It had been in the freezer for about six months during the Covid lockdown, so he decided to rescue it in his fish curry.

 Ingredients:-

A Pomfret fish, cut into chunks 

A dried lemon or lime (stick a knife in it to let the aroma spread)

Ghee to fry

Chopped and diced onion

Four cloves of garlic, crushed

8 cardamons

A teaspoon of cumin seeds

A teaspoon of crushed cumin

A teaspoon of crushed coriander seeds

8 cloves

A teaspoon of Nigella Seeds

A tablespoon of turmeric powder

Two teaspoons of hot curry powder

A tin of good quality tomatoes or fresh tomatoes, skin removed if preferred

A splash of water, to allow the fish to cook

Salt and black pepper

Coriander, washed, dried and chopped for a garnish

METHOD:

Melt some ghee in a large saucepan.  Fry the onions and garlic until golden brown.  Add the spices and the pomfret fish cut into chunks. Season with salt and pepper.  Add the tomatoes, dried lemon and water and simmer for half an hour.

Serve with pure white basmati rice and garnish with coriander.

A Quick Light Lunch – Cheese and Tuna Medley

CHEESE AND TUNA MEDLEY

4oz of tuna fish

2 eggs and a drop of milk

A few chopped mushrooms

A packet of plain potato crisps (crushed)

A small tin of garden peas

6 ounces grated cheese

1 tomato (sliced)

1oz of finely chopped onions

Salt and pepper

Turn on the oven to 180c if a fan oven/gas mark 4/350F.

Butter an ovenproof dish.

Put the tuna, mushrooms, crisps, onions, peas, 4oz of cheese, salt and pepper and eggs into a mixing bowl.. Stir well. It should be very wet; if not, add some milk. Place the mixture into the buttered dish. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top and then the sliced tomato. Cook for about 30 minutes and serve hot.

A Visit to Andy’s Taverna in Camden Town, London

My second meal out since lockdown was a birthday celebration for my husband at Andy’s Taverna.

We were made to feel welcome and everyone wore a mask.  It was the end of the summer and the outside tables were all taken so we sat indoors.  There was plenty of santising going on and the toilets had plentiful supplies and were clean.  The food was amazing.  The portions were so big, I asked to box mine.  The service was excellent.  Will definitely return when it’s safe to do so (lockdown etc.)  We had to wait about 20 minutes for the dessert but it was well worth the wait and they told us it takes a while.  I don’t eat chips on a regular basis but these were the best I have had in a long time.  The only niggle was, the place is so popular the tables were a little too close together during these trying times with Covid.

Kleftico and a spread of starters, hot and cold

Beef stifado

mixed kebabs

A selection of starters with bread

More starters

The interior decoration.