Friday, 26 January 2007

baking and birthdays...

The last week has seen two of my lovely housemates turn 21, well, Katie won't be until tomorrow, but as she's going home today, we had a pre-birthday breakfast for her. We did the same for Rachel, as she went to Paris on her birthday. For Rachel, I baked some apple and walnut bread with cinammon and sugar topping, and some chocolate hazelnut balls (which tasted very much like ferrero roche), as a birthday cake wasn't really transportable. For Katie, we put greek yoghurt and honey in wine glasses with passion fruit topping, wrote her name in skittles (her dream is to have a bath of red skittles for her birthday, so this was a slight compromise!!!) freshly baked, warm raisin bread (courtesy of petrie, my breadmaker), and delicious home-made chocolate (see right). I love being creative with food.

Today saw even more baking - with Madeleine!! Our first ever baking session. We made lemon muffins with pink icing. Of course, Madeleine's favourite thing to do while we baked was to stick her fingers in anything and everything, including the lemon juice. Having stuck her whole hand in the juice, she promptly put her whole hand in her mouth - I thought this was the best way to make her realize that lemon juice really isn't great. Turns out, she loves it. Just like my sister. I have been quite industrious on the interior design front today too. I finally framed and hung a couple of photos that we've been wanting to have on our walls for a long time. Having thoroughly impressed myself with my ability to hang pictures singlehandedly, I got slightly carried away and added a few more tacs to my bedroom walls to change my wall decoration. What fun.

I have to echo my big brother's response to the wonderful news of Jo and Steve's beautiful, beautiful baby girl being born. There is something that goes way beyond words when a baby is born. Not simply the miracle of a new life being brought into the world, but this beautiful sensitivity and humility that seems to shine in parents, and never fails to make me cry.

Just for your ammusement, I have this phenomenal ability to break things, and the list of things that have fallen prey to me is growing exceedingly quickly....

***coffee table broken

***rachel's radley umrella - dead

***celine's bowl smashed, when being put away

***rachel's gap jumper - now suitable for a 4 year old girl, due to shrinkage

***flat intercom phone killed following a meeting with my foot on the decent of a handstand

In the last 2 weeks...

***rachel's photo frame - smashed as I was trying to fix the wire in the back

***contact lens broken in my zip, having fallen out of my eye

***ipod lost, having fallen out of my pocket

***sarah's jumper ruined - got bleach on it when highlighting martin's hair

***bag of couscous dropped and split in sainsbury's

***big cup of coffee that I bought as a treat for all my hard work, knocked over by my armful of library books trying to escape from my arms, spilling coffee onto one of the library books (10 mins after dropping the couscous)

Approximate cost of my mishaps (in the last 2 weeks) totalling....£160

Please pray for me. Seriously, I'm not joking.

Friday, 19 January 2007

the joys of toddlerhood...

I had great fun with Madeleine today. Some of the highlights of the morning were...

***reading 'We're going on a bear hunt' - this brings back wonderful memories of primary school, and vividly imagining that I really was wading through the long grass

***walking to the park, only we didn't end up making it there - we walked half way which would take about 5 mins with Madeleine in the buggy, but took 25 minutes with her walking because we got distracted by planes in the sky, how a wind chime works, collecting muddy sticks, and pretending Madeleine was a baby, so she needed to be carried. This lead on to us looking up at the clouds to see if we could see any pictures in them. We didn't make it to the park because Madeleine is in the middle of potty training, so we wanted to make it home before having an accident, which we did. Success.

***making snakes out of banana skins

***crouching down on the pavement, singing 'Baa baa black sheep', and 'Humpty Dumpty' - it's wonderful the things you can get away with doing when you are with a young child - take away Madeleine, and I would be being swiftly removed from the streets by the men in white coats

Wednesday, 17 January 2007

prime location...

It would seem that our street is a prime choice for filming various escapades...item number 1: filming for the mini cooper advert. Ours is quite a quiet street, so to hear a huge cacophony outside - screaming girls, music blarring and all that jazz, in the middle of the day, I was somewhat curious as to what was going on. So I was rather surprised when I looked out the window to see a couple of incredibly scantilly clad ladies - dressed like ladies in a brazilian dancers with head plumes and everything - closely followed by the police. My immediate reaction was, 'Why on earth aren't the police doing something about that awful racket and the fact that these women are indecently exposed??!!' Only to realize that the police were protecting them!!! They were filming a 'mini adventure' outside our house!! How very exciting...

item number 2: This week, I came home to find a BMW parked in our drive - a curious sight at a student house. Well, the owner of the Bee-mer was a man working for the BBC and round the back of our house was a film crew, filming some programme about self-sufficiency!!! Cool beans.

Last week was one of great productivity, spending all day every day in the library aven m' amie Hannah. I thought I might go slightly stir-fry crazy spending so much time in the library, but I found the secret to avoiding this is a whole lot of laughter. Hannah is perhaps the funniest person I know, and pretty much all the time we weren't working, we were laughing. This was fine as we were in a study room in the library where you are allowed to talk, although we got kicked out of one of them as a group of physicists' had booked it. This made laughing a whole lot harder, as we had to stifle our laughter, which just made us cry and laugh even more. What fun.

Sunday, 7 January 2007


i am in love. But not with a man, with a book. Perhaps the most wonderful recipe book I've ever laid my eyes on. I discovered the delights of this culinary, artistic genuis just before Christmas and have invested in a copy. Who is this wonderful person? I hear you ponda. Tessa Kiros. A very cool lady with very beautiful children and very wonderful recipes. I bought her book called 'Apples for Jam', which has lots of recipes in it that characterised her childhood, that are fun to make for kids and are just very cool.

So, it's been a while since my last post, I know. I had a lovely time back in the Bay with the cool crew. We had some wild times on sing star - if you want to see some photos of me getting my groove on, check out katy's blog. Love it. It was great to see my siblings again, although with sarah quickly stepping into my shoes of chief-socialite of the family, and with john jetting off to Barcelona, we didn't have enough time together. Here is a photo of two of my siblings on our walk along Neptune's arm on Herne Bay seafront. Legends.

This week back in Bristol has been great. I've had the pleasure and priviledge of cooking for friends most nights of this week, and each time I have ended up cooking for about twice as many people as I had anticipated, which I love! I always want there to be enough food for one more mouth. I even had a twelve week old baby round! although he didn't eat at the table, he just sat and watched us eat, and got unhappy when he didn't get enough attention! Eating with friends is a wonderful thing. I think I have used that word a little too many times in this entry - sorry!

I have been writing this whilst listening to one of my medic flatmates 'percuss' a guys' lower torso. I am proud to say that I have already learnt to distinguish between the sounds - so I can hear the sound change between resonant and dull; when you percuss over a solid mass, like the liver, the sound is dull. Cool stuff.