Saturday, 19 January 2019


I’m a little nervous about today’s dinner. Yesterday, at the club, much of the conversation was about a rather disastrous chowder our friends had had at another mutual friend’s home. They’d struggled through it & one at least had suffered from indigestion all night afterwards.

I’m making chowder for dinner today hence the nervousness.

The recipe is actually for a clam chowder but I was unable to find the required tins of clams around here. Indeed clams full stop. We tried various places with no luck. In the end I’ve decided to use tinned crab instead. The mixture is in the slow cooker slowly cooking away to soften the potatoes. Later on we will pop out to get some bread & milk, the former to accompany the chowder, the latter to make up for all the milk that’s gone in the chowder leaving us short for tea.

I’m just hoping we enjoy the meal now.

Certainly the magpie seemed to enjoy the bit of bacon fat & black pudding left over from yesterday’s meal, a Fox’s experiment of scallops, bacon & black pudding.

As you may realise from our renewed culinary enthusiasm & experimentation, we’re feeling much better now. The Fox seems over his cold. I’m still a bit blocked but I’m down to just a couple of tissues a day now, not the half box of I was on. We celebrated yesterday with me moving back onto the sofa, near the Fox, my legs once more comfortably stretched out on his lap, my toes nuzzling in, as we had something to drink, listened to some music & chuntered. At last we’re at the stage when we can feel a cuddle is definitely on the cards & we relish it.

Friday, 18 January 2019

New life

Our gardener came yesterday. I ventured out with a mug of tea for her & sat & chatted for a bit. It was lovely to see some of the spring bulbs are budding up. Here are the beginning of white snowdrops buds, there some golden crocus buds. The hellebores are out, some pink, some white. Life is definitely beginning to burgeon. We both worry it may be a bit too early as the worst of winter has yet to come.

What really bemuses us is that the lobelia is still in flower in the walled garden. Admittedly that garden is more sheltered than most of the garden, but even so.

We’re re-designing the front garden. It’s no longer going to be the herb garden. The essential culinary herbs have moved to the back, near the house. At the moment only the bay tree remains in the front. That is too big to contemplate safely moving to the back so I will have to continue to venture out the front when I need a bay leaf. I’m looking forward to getting something more planted in the front. We appreciate the privacy afforded by a few shrubs & other plants. At the moment we still feel a bit exposed. Our gardener as drawn up a list of suggestions only she keeps forgetting to bring the list with her. Hopefully she will remember soon.

Thursday, 17 January 2019

Getting back to normal

It is so good to be getting back to normal. We managed a food shop yesterday. It was only a small one, but we both managed it without adverse side effects. We celebrated by popping down to our local pub where we joined our cruising friends who are still trying to escape the misery of house-hunting. It’s really getting them down. Another couple of friends came along to join us. We then moved into the more restaurant part of the pub & had a meal.

We usually have the fish & chips there. Nice & simple, just what we fancied. We put our order in to be told the cod had come in a rather small size. Did we want that? We agreed though we supplemented it with a bowl of homemade tomato soup. We were bemused when we got the bill to see this small size of battered cod was called fish finger. All I can say is most ready battered cod fillets you get in the freezer compartment in the supermarket are smaller than the fish we’d just had. It certainly wasn’t a fish finger! The only thing you could really say is that it wasn’t the whale that overhangs the plate that they usually serve here. It was good, though the chips were really rather too fat.

I’m bemused by my post this week. Yesterday I got a letter from the hospital. I’ve got an appointment with Orthotics to sort out my new knee braces. Today I got another letter from the hospital. This time it is from the Breast Clinic with an appointment. Both appointments are on the same day. I’m telling myself it will get both jobs done in one trip. There’s a couple of hours between appointments so we may have a bit of a look around Lancaster, or go along to the nearby garden centre or over to Glasson & the smokehouse – we’re out of smoked salmon at the moment. If the first appointment takes longer than expected we may just end up popping into the cafĂ© for a drink. It will certainly be a busy day.