Sunday, October 10, 2010

It's Been A While . . .

Yes it's been a while since I posted in July following a trip to The Courts Gardens in the Summer sunshine!!!! Real life has a habit of getting in the way, as does work, although I know Big Sis and I are truly grateful to have jobs and for everything that we do have between us. The UK seems gripped by a somewhat grim mood which I can only describe as something approaching wartime, and this is from what my parents told me of that time when of necessity austerity ruled and "make do and mend" was one of the key phrases, as was "Keep calm and carry on". Yes, there were actually posters of that phrase put up in public places at that time!!! The old skills of utilising leftovers in the food line and minimising waste as well as making over where clothes and other things are concerned are being rediscovered and in some cases hailed as new ideas . . . these are skills my grandma and Mom had and passed down to me; likewise my Big Sis was raised the same way. Just my observations and not meant in a patronising way to anyone at all. On the happy side Big Sis and I had a wonderful vacation recently and as usual crammed in a whole lot each day, as well as stitching, hanging out and laughing, movies and food!!!! I think I trucked back half her local grocery store in my luggage and of course brought out with me a whole Waitrose bag full of crumpets for her freezer!!!! Yes I'm sure some online import stores carry crumpets but at an exorbitant cost and at least she gets them fresh from my local Sainsbury's where the bakery manager is intrigued that some of his stock finds its way across the pond!!!!! And as usual on the flights to/from the US, there were the usual number of idiots trying to bring on luggage as carryon then wondering why there wasn't space in the overhead bins!!!!! There's me with my regulation size carryon and personal item (crumpet-stuffed Waitrose bag) all stowed, watching folks get tied in knots then having to give up their bags to be valet-checked - and this is at Heathrow!!!!! It's selfish and wastes valuable time - as it was the plane was 10 mins late pushing back from the gate because of these idiots but of course the airline should enforce the carryon size rule . . . !!!! I know folks are trying to avoid the extra bag charges but come ON!!!!! Get real!!!! OK, rant over!!!!! I got to and from safely and reunited with my luggage which, after all, is the whole point!!!! AND I got a second breakfast too as the outward flight was only half full . . . the airline sure didn't make any profit on me that day!!!!! But then a couple of days after returning, I had to invest in a new cooker or stove as the element blew in my old one. This was NOT cool as it was a Belling and in the UK this is supposed to be a good make but hey what do I know. My friendly electrician sucked his teeth wisely and even though it was only six years old we agreed it would make more sense to bite the bullet and get a new one as parts for these are not readily available over here and labor costs high. I am now the proud owner of a new cooker to be wired in tomorrow evening. There's never a good time to buy high-ticket items but I'm grateful I am in a position to be able to do that. And from what the delivery guys said my old one can be "reconditioned" by the store in some way and reused. Next weekend I plan on making chicken & mushroom pie from scratch in my new pie dish to christian my new cooker!!!!! However today is StitchAlong Sunday and I'm pleased to say White Star is almost finished now - I'm on the last row GO ME!!!!! Happy stitching!!!!!

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