Thursday, 14 April 2011

Ice-Creams and Sorbets!

I have been given an Ice Cream maker for my birthday!  This has happened to coincide nicely with my new diet regime that I had forewarned the husband about but seems to not have been registered. 

However it has also coincided with the weather getting warmer and being able to make our own varieties of ice cream for Bobs will be a welcome relief to whenever we go out and he wants some but there is always the inevitable nut warning. 

Also, I can make sorbets!  Corn syrup is about to become my new best friend.

We will start with a relatively simple strawberry ice cream and then build up to something more substantial.  As an added gift I also received the Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and Sorbet Recipe Book.

Looks like that diet of mine is going to go nowhere fast!

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Vive La France!

I went to Paris!  Yes I did!  I left the children with their father on a Friday morning and headed over to the most enchanting city in Spring.  It was amazing.  Two and a half days of not changing nappies or being whinged at by small people.  Hurrah!

My friend Jan and her partner Andrew were kind enough to put me up, or put up with me, which ever is more appropriate, and took me to see a little snippet of their life in France.  We had picnic's in parks and dinner in funky French restaurants.  The food, needless to say, was amazing and I had one dish of fish wrapped in filo pastry that was so simple and delicious that I am going to try and recreate it for the kids, so hopefully a new recipe to come soon.

I am also going to start collating my recipes together to create a recipe book.  Exciting times.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

My mother told me.....

There is a competition on Uber Kate to win one of her 'to die for' necklaces.  All you have to do is write some great piece of advice your mother told you, or worst piece of advice, and maybe, just maybe, you will be lucky enough to walk away with some amazing jewelery.  Well,  never one to say no to more glam, I thought I would add my snipet.

I thought long and hard.  Looked at the other entries 'love yourself', 'be kind to others', blah blah blah.

Truth is, I don't remember my mother giving me such advice.  I do remember, 'don't be so selfish', 'don't eat so fast', 'wear a bra or your boobs will be down by your knees', but the other bits of sage advice I think I gleamed from the never ending playing of Anne of Green Gable.  I am thinking this was probably her way of imparting advice.  Through the medium of TV classics.  I still get told to play the 'Glad Game' at times.  This results in me biting my tongue, counting to ten and almost glad Pollyanna felt out of that damn tree in the first place.....*and breathe*

No, my mothers pearls of wisdom usually came along the lines of:

Me: Mother, am I adopted?
Mother: Don't be so silly dear.  If you were, we would have taken you back by now.

Or the time I trilled down the phone to her after seeing my first baby scan:

Me: (singing) You're going to be a grand-ma!
Mother: (singing): You're going to lose your fig-ure....


Still.  That didn't stop me from writing in her Mother's Day card:

Dear Mum

Thanks for all that you have done for me.  As my children grow up, each and every day all I can think of is 'dear God, I am so sorry for the nightmare that was raising me".

Much love

There truly is no harder job and all the times I railed against her and the restrictions imposed on me as I grew up all seem to make sense now.  Typically it has taken 30 *ahem* years to grasp this fact, but hey - at least it is learned, right?

I don't know what advice I will pass on to my children.  I hope they learn from my actions to love deeply, forgive wisely, learn diligently, act truthfully and live honourably.  I hope they always know that to be a first rate version of themselves is always infinitely better than being a second rate version of somebody else.

One thing my mother did always say was that my education was my inheritance.  Whether this is to cushion the blow of her leaving all her worldy assets to a cat home or not, I don't know.  But I do know, now that I am in the midst of selecting a school for Bob, that this was probably the best thing she did tell me.  Nothing in this world is impossible if you have a good foundation within yourself to work hard and learn well.  Money can be earned or even won.  Possessions can be bought. But you can't reach your true, full potential if you don't have the roots beneath your mighty oak to hold you up.

Trying to choose the best school for my son is such a daunting and over whelming task. Where will he be happy? Will he have friends? Will he be sociable?  Will he learn well? Mixed schools or single sex? State school or private? What suits him best?

So many decision, but at least I know one thing to be true.  The best thing I can leave my children with in this world, when I am long gone, is the knowledge that have had a good education and can think for themselves. 

Maybe Mum was full of the best advice after all?

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Bongo Madness and Mothers Day

This weekend marked the celebration of Mother's Day in the UK.  I say 'celebration' but it really is just another day of the week where demands are made of you, but there is likely to be some form of recompense in the shape of chocolate.

True to form, my promised lie-in was interrupted by shouting children and an ever-increasing-in-stress husband.  Cuddles were had and presents received.  I got a cook book from the kids.  I am trying not to read too much into that .......

Most of the day was spent with a lot of noise, whining and moaning, and a general feeling by me that for Mother's Day what I really wanted, was not to have to mother for an hour or so.  But truth is, I wouldn't change it for the world.

We also decided to go an look at a few Bongo's this weekend.  Not the drums that you beat at hippy festivals, but the type that you turn into campervans, so you can go to hippy festivals.  We are in two minds as to whether we should purchase such an extravagance.  Will the long term benefits of having an instant holiday maker pay off? Or will it just be a ludicrous flash in the pan idea that we will be desperately trying to sell on Bongo Fury in 12 months time?

Either way, we knew that we couldn't make any decisions without actually having seen one close up and in person.  My son was in heaven!  Jumping in and out of various conversions and telling us which colours he thought was best. (Red, apparently).

The gentleman selling them said that he and his family used their camper a lot.  It was great to get away one weekends and more importantly, it meant that you did more as a family as a consequence.  And that can only be a good thing.

Unless you are stuck in torrential weather with a snoring fart monster that takes up all the bed space.

Hmmm, maybe I need to get a separate one for the husband?