Friday, 24 December 2010


Well Christmas eve is here and where am I? working! First time worked a night shift on Christmas eve and my girls are not happy about it. I've done well not to have worked it for the last eight years. I have to take a turn, it's only fair. Because I'm working In-laws have invited us to theirs for Christmas dinner. I will be opening presents with the family when I get in from work then it's off to bed for a good sleep then over to the In-laws later in the afternoon. Hubby and girls will be going over before me so I can sleep in peace and quiet.

I will be busy Boxing day though, got daughter No1 and son-in-law and 2 grandaughters arriving for another big meal. Got my table set today and the house clean and all bedding changed. Gammon cooked this evening and desserts made and in the freezer. Roll on 7.00am I want to get home  and start enjoying Christmas!

Monday, 20 December 2010

I'm back

Not been on for a week but I'm here now and rearing to go. Busy time for all of us but I think I'm all prepared now. All present shopping has arrived. Last one ordered on the Internet arrived after two weeks, very early Sunday morning. Everything is wrapped and stashed away. Delivery with Tesco was booked weeks ago and will arrive Thursday. Just had my last visit to Aldi for last few things to last until delivery arrives and I am not going anywhere near a shop until new year! I can't stand the hustle and bustle of shops at this time of the year, it's manic, gets me so stressed so I take the easy route, and get everything delivered.

This year we have put a limit with my husbands parents on how much we shall spend, £10 each was the limit. None of us really need anything and it is so pointless spending money on gifts nobody really wants or needs. I have pooled the in-laws money together and have made a hamper for them. I have bought things that have only been on offer in the shops like a tin of biscuits for £4 and a bottle of wine when it was on offer. I bought a lovely block note pad in the sale for 99p was originally £4.99. I am also adding a jar of home made lemon curd. 

I made a jar for the in-laws and a large jar for us, it does taste lovely. I will make a nice label to put on the jar and it will go nicely with my hamper. I will put a picture of the hamper on my blog when it is finished. I had a lot of lemons left so I made a lovely lemon drizzle cake. This I slice up and put in the freezer and just take out a slice when needed.

The lemon skins that are left get put into a container and I keep this in the fridge. I add about 4 halves to the dishwasher and they give everything a lovely fresh smell. They last a couple of washes then I put them in the compost bin.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Menu plan

Menu plan for this week is

Fish fingers, wedges and beans

Left over chicken in sauce, vegetable rice

Fish pie, carrots and peas

Creamy mascarpone tuna sauce, pasta. cheese and garlic bread

Fish, chips and mushy peas

Chicken fajitas

Roast pork loin, veg, roast potatoes and apple sauce

When we have a roast chicken I always strip the carcass of all the leftover meat then throw all the skin and bones back into the slowcooker with some peppercorns, 2 bay leaves, a carrot, onion and water to make stock. On Tuesday we are having the leftover chicken mixed into a sauce of sauteed onions and mushrooms, chicken stock, milk, parsley and flour to thicken. This will be served on boiled rice with mixed vegetables added. It makes a very filling meal just from leftovers.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Like my bargain?

Do you like my great bargain?

It's a huge stock pot I got from the charity shop I volunteer at. I got it for £2.00! It's first job was to boil the dogs carrots. I bring the pan to the boil then always turn the hob off after 5 minutes and let the carrots cook in the steam and heat from the cooling hob, it saves on the electric. The pot will be great for jam making or for boiling big hams at christmas. Really pleased with my find. 

Worked a night shift last night so didn't get up until 1.30pm. I know, it's early when I've worked nights but I get up at that time to take the dog for his walk if no body's here to take him out. I hate dog walking at the moment with this weather. The roads and paths are still treacherous in our village, nothing is melting because the temperature every morning my husband goes to work reads -10. I've nearly fallen on numerous occasions and so has the poor dog. After my walk managed to get some cooking done which I enjoyed. I boiled a gammon for sandwiches and boiled the pan of carrots for the dog. I had the bread maker on making the dough for 3 baguettes and I made a veg and tuna lasagne.We had the lasagne for tea with a baguette made into a garlic baguette and a salad.

I have 3 portions of lasagne to freeze for another day.

Friday, 3 December 2010

Fed up of all this snow now!

Getting really fed up of the snow and ice now. It's been here since Monday and I've had enough! Had a horrible drive to work Tuesday night and an even worse drive back early Wednesday morning. Got my car halfway in the drive and it ground to a halt with spinning wheels. There was too much snow on my drive it all got clogged around my tires. I'd had enough so left the car and went to bed. Had a few hours sleep then daughter No3 helped me clear the drive and I was able to get my car off the road.

Not been in the car until this morning to go to my voluntary job. Had to visit the garage before going to my job to have them look at my exhaust on the car. My daughter No3 said I sounded like a boy racer car when I picked her up from college on Monday. Well it ended up costing me £157 for a new exhaust fitting, just what I needed on top of the week we've had.

Got a lot of soup made to stock up for the coming week. I made a batch of cauliflower and goats cheese soup. I made this with a 49p  reduced colly and a piece of goats cheese I found in the back of the freezer. The second soup was leek and potato made with 49p Aldi leeks.

They both taste really nice. Don't have to think about what to eat for lunch, just need to remember to take one from the freezer the night before to defrost.