I used to have a real love of books. I would literally start reading a book at bedtime and find I was still reading at 3am! Probably in the last 5 years ago, my passion for books has been quashed by I don’t know what. It’s so strange to me. I read lots for sure, I read numerous blogs, news sites, Facebook, Twitter and the like, but for some reason I read very few books.
I think it may have something to do with forming good sleeping habits. I used to have terrible insomnia. Sometimes laying awake for hours, reading or not. It was very annoying. Though I was recovering from a major illness and therefore had no where to go, I didn’t like feeling like a vampire. So I set about trying to change my habits about sleeping. I don’t do anything much in the bedroom that doesn’t involve the bed. I mostly don’t even get dressed in there. I took everything distracting out, including books, so I could focus on what the bedroom is mainly there for, sleep.
Now this did work. I now sleep great most of the time. A couple of bad habits have snuck in, such as checking emails, playing games or reading the few ebooks I have (I limit these to 10 minutes and never in between sleep sessions) but on the whole I do well, I get my 8 hours and wake up refreshed! The hubs on the other hand still struggles with sleep. Sometimes it takes him hours to get off and he often wakes not long before mid day if left. He reads a copious amount of books. His kindle is packed with every kind you can think of and I am constantly frustrated by the piles we have in the bathroom. Do I have to forfeit a love of books for a good sleep then??
I don’t miss it though. I really don’t miss books at all. If I see a book that takes my fancy I will read it, but I don’t have the hunger that I did in my teens when I read most of Shakespeare for fun, devoured every Terry Pratchett book that came out and scavenged at my local charity shop for books a few times a week. I still read more instructional books like for baking or crafts, those remain well thumbed.
I’m wondering if this is something you guys are experiencing too. Do you still read books in the traditional sense? Do you read as many as you did? I’m really interested to know.
February 21, 2013 Thursday at 3:11 pm
In our house we call these special because it’s always a special occasion when we have them!
It’s a really easy way to make something ordinary special. Hopefully it will also make someone you love, feel extra special!
Also note, the butter really makes this dish, go with it!
Feeds: One very hungry person or 2 regular
Prep/Cook time: <15mins
- Tin of baked beans
- Half an onion
- 1 tbsp Butter, for sautéing
- Chilli flakes, to taste
- Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- Splash of milk. Optional
Heat your butter in a saucepan, on a medium heat (add a drop of oil if you’re frightened of it burning).
Once it’s heated thoroughly, add the onions, chilli flakes and black pepper and stir. They’ll take a minute or too to start to soften but don’t let them turn brown, as soon as they are translucent, add your beans.
Turn the heat down a little and stir. Stir frequently with a wooden spoon allowing the beans to soften and break up slightly.
Cook on slow until your sauce has thickened slightly adding a splash of milk to loosen it a little if preferred.
Serve on warm cornbread, buttered toast, bagel, with breakfast or anything you’d normally have beans with.
February 17, 2013 Sunday at 1:06 pm
Happy Valentines people!
I know not everyone loves Valentines day I get it. We don’t really do the traditional valentines day either. We give cards and we have dinner together but no boxes of chocolates or big bunches of flowers. I’m allergic to pollen and he is diabetic! We enjoy spending time together, just being, and thanking our lucky stars we have each other.
So it’s not a gift from the hubs I got today. No, it was a brand new nephew who came early this morning. I’m currently at work and I am itching to get out of here so I can get all the details!
A lovely surprise indeed!
February 14, 2013 Thursday at 11:33 am
February 13, 2013 Wednesday at 10:43 am
This is part of a new feature on simple foods jazzed up and made especially yummy! Hope to have something for you every Sunday for some lazy day grubbing. PS. sorry for the poor photo. I don’t have a very good camera and it’s stormy here!
This isn’t your average coleslaw but, as I’m sure you’re aware, there are many, many different versions of this creamy salad to be had. This is my favourite version and I think it deserves the gourmet title! I love that it’s so green from the Savoy cabbage and so savoury from the mustard. I can, and have, eaten bowls full.
Gourmet Deli Coleslaw
Yields: 2 ample portions
Prep time: 10 minutes
- Half a Savoy Cabbage, finely shredded (about 2 cups)
- 1 Large Carrot, Grated (about 1 heaped cup full)
- Half a large Onion, finely sliced
- Optional: Spring onion, sliced
- 1-2 tbsp Mayonaise (adjust to suit your tastes)
- 1 tbsp Salad Cream (Can sub extra mayo and a little vinegar)
- 2 tsp English Mustard
- Plenty of fresh ground black pepper to taste
The method is super easy too, just bung everything in a bowl. Mix thoroughly, trying to avoid hot spots of mustard, and enjoy!
We especially like this with curry chicken, ribs, or served alongside my special beans recipe (to come next week) with meat pies mmm.
February 10, 2013 Sunday at 10:22 am
February 6, 2013 Wednesday at 11:13 am
I really can’t recommend it enough. If you like structure but find it hard to plan things out yourself, this is for you! I chose this plan because I find it very hard to deal with other peoples mess. I find it overwhelming and then I become messy. So I’m hoping this plan will help instil order into our home that is contagious. I thought I’d do a run down of how my first full day went.
It’s been going well in my opinion. Obviously I leave the house each day, so getting dressed to my shoes is already a habit. I also can’t make the bed because there is someone still in it. I’ve tried making him wake up at 6:30 as well, he doesn’t want to xD. I work, so I just append my routine to my work day. It was clean your bins day, so I did just that. Not the outside bins mind, bin day is not till Friday and I didn’t want to have to yank everything out.
So I emptied and cleaned all the bins, inside and out. Once I’d done that though. The kitchen floor was all wet, so I thought I may as well sweep and mop it. I didn’t go hard core with floor cleaner, scrubbing etc, I just used the left over hot water and cif, took the recommendation to limit extra tasks to 15 minutes and had at it. Then, when I was emptying out the hot water, I thought, I may as well clean the front step. So I did that too and got rid of all the horrid cat debris she leaves everywhere.
I didn’t shine my sink, only because the fly lady method seems to depend on one person doing the bulk of the cleaning. We’re not doing that. This week is hubbies turn to wrangle the dishes, so I’m not interfering.
I did do my load of laundry, I’m usually good about washing regularly but the hubs is not. So I’m alternating each day a load of my clothes and then a load of his the next. The hubs likes way more fabric softener than I do, so mainly I wash separate but I’m sure clean clothes with not enough softener wins over dirty any day.
I wrote everything down on my white board, so I could feel proud of myself for having got it done and then I had a treat. No point working hard if you’re not going to reward yourself is there!
I got myself all set for the following day but forgot my breakfast . I had my keys, purse, milk (for tea at work), headphones and clothes ready to go. This plan isn’t perfect here. I had to change my outfit choice because it was much colder than forecast today and I am a bit achey so needed loose layers. I might choose to have outfit choices rather than setting out clothes because I then had to spend extra time putting things back. It’s a learning curve.
All in all it feels like a success. I think I’ve been trying to do too much at once. It’s become overwhelming and then I’ve just stopped trying. I’m not saying that you need to join fly lady but I do have these tips.
- Set yourself a list of tasks in a visible place such as a pinboard or on the fridge
- If you have under 10 tasks aim to do about 90% if you have more aim to do 80%
- Check the items off the list as you go. Seeing the list become smaller is a great motivator.
- Set yourself a time limit for each task, don’t spend hours on something if you don’t want to!
- Reward yourself for doing well
- Start in the kitchen or the bathroom.
- Declutter! If you haven’t used it in a year chuck it out, if you haven’t even thought about it in 6 months, chuck it out. If it doesn’t have a home and doesn’t get used, out it goes!
I’d love to know how you guys motivate yourself to stay organised. Let me know in the comments or direct me to your own posts.
February 5, 2013 Tuesday at 10:24 am
I’ve finally gotten used to waking up at the unearthly hour of 6:30 am. Yay, go me! Shame I literally only have about 3 weeks left of this assignment but hey ho, at least it’s not a chore trying to wake myself up any more. I was also really excited by how light it was when I woke up and I saw a butterfly! To see a butterfly in early February is crazy! Spring is almost upon us.
Being bright eyed and bushy tailed means; I’ve been doing more crafting and because I’ve been doing more crafting, I’ve come up with an idea for a tutorial you guys might like. I hope to have it mocked up and finished soon. Still no pictures. I think I’ve lost my photo taking mojo… but I have finished 2 projects, a kimono for round the house and a pair of slippers which inspired my new project. They are based on a pair of baby booties I’m not 100% sure I shared here. The base pattern I used did not suit the style though so I’m drafting my own version kind of using the sizing on the pattern I was given. I think it’s gonna be kind of awesome, so I am excited to get started.
There was no baking in the month of January, well unless you count cornbread (and I don’t). How crazy is that? I’ve been doing more cooking though. I’ve made curry chicken twice, (the aforementioned) cornbread (delish btw), macaroni and cheese (West Indian style) and of course the basics like chicken grills and rice/pasta . January really took it’s toll on me. I’m hoping to get some more baking in this month, this is depending on my kitchen staying organised. I’m following the Fly Lady method (of Flylady.net rather than an actual fly lady) to try and keep my life organised and try and stop the blame game from flying around our house. This week is the kitchen and so that bodes well for weekend baking!
February 4, 2013 Monday at 12:56 pm
Winter is the time for crafting. Plenty of time snuggled indoors with plenty of warm blankets in front of a cosy fire. A project or two in lap, with a couple more close by just in case. Comforting stews, tea, cake and warm puddings become habitual.
Winter is not the friend of those trying to take pictures of said crafts on their phone camera (because they have lost their regular camera). It’s also not the friend of commuters, especially when it snows. It also seems to encourage slugs to make their home in our basement who then visit the kitchen in the middle of the night *shudders*.
I’m glad winter will soon be over, it is definitely not my favourite season. Hopefully spring will bring with it more blog writing and documenting. Also hoping spring brings hope to us starting our family. I start my first round of assisted conception treatment the end of the month. Wish me luck!
January 25, 2013 Friday at 11:25 am
I’ve finally got round to some crafting. Our friends little girl turned 3 on Sunday and she is the epitome of girly girl. I knew she would absolutely love a tutu or petticoat and so I scoured the net for a pattern I saw one time many moons ago. I couldn’t find it but thought I remembered enough of it to wing it.
I knew I needed chiffon but I made the most time sucking mistake of not getting a non fray kind, doh! Then when I got home I found the pattern telling me so. By the way, the how-to is awesomely detailed check it out. I took another trip back to my local fabric shop only to find they didn’t have any non fray chiffon. They had no knit chiffon at all. bum.
I persevered though. I was determined a skirt would be made. So I zig zagged all those edges bar the chiffon I’d already ruffled… All 60 plus metres!
It was so worth it. She absolutely loved it! I’ve lost my camera so waiting on her daddy sending me a picture of her in it, but it looked adorable. Especially walking home seeing it bobbing about under her coat, so cute! God help us if we don’t have a girl. I think the boys will be getting tutus!
This is the only picture I have of the whole ensemble. Leg warmers and leotard (onesie suit) included!
I’ve been doing more crafting but that will have to wait till next week!
December 11, 2012 Tuesday at 5:49 pm