Sunday, 25 May 2008

Good News Bad News again

080524 breakfast
Originally uploaded by commonplaceiris.
Here's a picture I took while eating the granola I made on Friday for breakfast with some strawberries and milk. It was "so good" (as my daughter keeps saying about her food at the moment), I will definitely be making my own granola more in the future.

Good News: the washing machine seems to be up and running again which means we may be able to pass it on to our tenants when the new one comes as originally planned (since they don't have one at all).

Bad News: instead of getting up and going to a birthday party this morning my daughter and I turned over and went back to sleep after a restless night. When I went to bed last night she crawled up on top of me, and was tossing and turning for hours which meant I wasn't sleeping much until she finally settled down. We took her temperature when we finally did get up this morning (underarm) and it was 100.4 so we were glad we'd chosen not to push things and go to the party in case she was contagious with something.

Good News: the fever didn't seem to be really bothering her much. It was apparent that she was under the weather but she wasn't really unhappy so we just had a quiet day at home. She spent a lot of time with her daddy today and I got into my sewing room again. Who knows I may even have some finished projects to show off soon (I'm actually wearing a new pair of flannel pj trousers right now).

Saturday, 24 May 2008

modern conveniences

We've been planning to replace some of our old inherited appliances (after finally filing some overdue tax returns and getting refunds). There's good news and bad news...

Bad News: this morning our washing machine was still full of water when it should have drained and spun while we were sleeping. It did not seem at all interested in draining and spinning although it did still agitate so not completely dead. Now when I was in my first year at university I did all my washing by hand in the tiny sink and a big plastic container in my room. With a toddler who wears cloth diapers and a husband who also produce laundry in the house I am not so thrilled with the idea of going back to washing by hand while we wait for a new machine!

Good News: this got my husband to finally order the washing machine he's been talking about us getting for many many moons (unfortunately it will take 3 to 4 weeks to get here)... and after some coaxing and poking the washing machine did finally drain and spin and my husband rinsed the clothes out and put them back in the machine and got them to spin again - hurrah! We shall experiment with it further over the weekend I'm sure but it seems there is hope at least.

More Good News: We had a new stove delivered last Friday, hurrah! The old oven worked just fine but the burners were quite unreliable to say the least so this is very nice for me. I broke it in on Friday evening by making a roast chicken dinner and baking bread. I've also made banana chocolate chip flapjacks (recipe found here, tasty) and had another go at the beef and rhubarb dish (this time I did serve it over rice) for a potluck dinner. Last night I made another version of potato and cheese bake which I served with some pea greens bought at the farmers market (where I also got rhubarb) cooked up with bacon and mushroom. (See the nice shiny stove that the plates are sitting on? It makes me happy.)

Today I decided to make granola for the first time (having polished of the last of the bought stuff the previous day). I've always intended to have a go at making my own, but I always wonder whether it's worth it since I don't consistently eat it and somehow it'd be worse to let it go to waste if it's homemade. Well I saw a recipe for cocoa-coconut granola at everybodylikessandwiches, and since I love chocolate and have actually been eating cereal more often recently I thought this would be a good time to finally give granola making a go.

I started while my daughter's breakfast oats were cooking so she insisted on helping with the dry ingredients and I finished putting it all together while she was eating. I didn't actually try eating it in a bowl with milk or yoghurt or anything yet, I've just been snacking on it from the jar, mmmm. I'm thinking it'd be good with raisins, or dried cranberries (as well as the apples, or bananas in the photos posted with the recipe). Maybe tomorrow I'll have some with some of the strawberries I didn't put in our rhubarb and strawberry sponge pudding tonight...

Monday, 12 May 2008

pentecostal mothers day

My husband took this picture of me with my daughter this morning just about to leave for the Pentecost service at church (hence lots of red clothing). I seem to take almost all the photos around here so it's nice to have a picture of me and my daughter together on Mothers Day.

And this is not all my husband did for me on Mothers Day either! He's going for some kind of prize this year I think. I got a cute card (which he helped our daughter to initial as we'd done for his mother and memere the day before) and a box of truffles. There were going to be flowers as well apparently but they had to be postponed due to our poor daughter throwing up in the car en route (we're hoping it was due to too many snacks at church rather than her inheriting my horrible car sickness). The best thing though was that he spent most of the day with my daughter so that I could have some time for me alone!!

I guess it's a little odd to celebrate being a mother by not mothering for much of the day but it was lovely to be able to listen to my favourite Radio 4 shows uninterrupted, and to get a rare chance to do some sewing (must get a sewing machine I can bring downstairs). Actually I think getting to take that kind of break makes spending time with my daughter afterwards seem all the sweeter. And how joyous when her daddy would bring her up to visit me and I'd hear "hi mummy" and she'd rush over to give me hugs and kisses.

A further bonus was getting take out food for dinner so that I didn't have to worry about cooking (I do enjoy cooking but when I'm sewing it's hard to tear myself away). Just as it was time to go pick up the food the power went out. Thankfully the power wasn't out at the restaurant so the food came home alright and we ate most of the meal by the light of an oil lamp and candles alone which my husband would not normally do voluntarily but I love.

Now I just need to rectify the neglect I've shown my own lovely mother this year (hi mum -- sorry I'm as disorganized as ever but I love and appreciate you very much).

Friday, 2 May 2008


spring journal page
Originally uploaded by commonplaceiris.
I've been wanting to try something like this for a long time. The biggest obstacle has been just getting something on a page and getting started.

The arrival of Spring is spurring me on to renew myself, start new things bring back habits I've lost and so on. I want to start posting to this neglected blog again, I want to be more creative and make sure my daughter's creativity is supported. I really want to feel less chaotic! I'm working on it -- here's a beginning in this new journal. Hopefully if I can keep building on these ideas the rest will follow.