Thursday, December 27, 2012

It's Over

                                                               Baby's first Christmas

Well its all over for another year. Had a pretty quiet day as expected. Some nice food, that I had a big hand in making this year. A highlight was watching as Jacob tried to rip the paper off his presents. He is far too young to know what it was all about but he did have an excited look on his face as his aunties assisted him with the ripping. He did receive some lovely gifts. As adults we get to play with the toys too.
One thing we wont do next year is make a fruit cake. Hardly anyone has eaten it and it sits forlorn in its tin. So no more next year. Other things to ditch is the gift giving angst. Happens every year. I am not buying for adults just children. My gift to my kids will be nice food, and a home they can always come home too.
The bloke had to work on Boxing day so things are back to normal quite quickly around here.
Our second daughter is holidaying in Darwin with her partner and she reports to be having a ball. Best Christmas she's had in years she says. Gee I wouldn't mind half of her joy.
The weather was predicted to be stinking hot here, but luckily Christmas day was quite mild and even though it was hot yesterday, today it is mild again. No complaints from me, I sit inside with the air con all the time, but humid weather really causes me grief.
Well have you been to any post Xmas sales? I gave them up years ago. Even is I could walk around I wouldn't. I mean truly do we need more stuff? Half the time the prices are not that cheap, but the spruikers make out like we better but this thing now whilst it's so cheap. Gah. I can't even raise enthusiasm to shop online. I have had a $0 balance on my credit card for some time. Even the kids are questioning my spending abilities. :)
I just don't have it in me to spend. Additionally the girls were wondering if they were seeing right when they saw one of my older girls with some of my 'home' magazines in her place. Did mum give you those they asked, incredulous at my ability to part with something that I have stockpiled for years, and I mean years.
Yep, I have been giving away stuff here and there. Books,magazines-(far too expensive to be only read by one person), bits of costume jewellery, other stuff.
We live in a large home and it is full of 'stuff', not just mine either. My kids have inherited the collecting bug and the bloke holds onto stuff.
I sometimes wonder if we might need an intervention, not dissimilar to what you see on the telly.
The frustrating thing is since I am practically immobile I am not able to act on my random urges of cleansing, I have to wait until some like minded person, usually the bloke, is kind enough to carry out the cleansing under my instructions.
As 2013 fast approaches many people make new year resolutions, and I certainly have over the years. But this year I don't have any expectations, nor the energy to carry them out. I guess I could make an effort but then it's difficult to come up with plans that someone else must assist you to accomplish.
However as I think more, I might be able to set some personal goals, just small ones that only I can do for me. I will have to give that idea more thought and get back to you.
Do any readers, if there are any, and I am not talking to  myself, set goals for the new year? If so can you share with me?

I will end it here wishing everyone a great new year.



Thursday, December 20, 2012

A Quiet Christmas

Thursday 20th December, just five days before the big day. I say it every year, but I'm always amazed when I realise that the festive season is upon us again. As I am nearly always at home I get to observe what the neighbours do in preparation for the event of the year. It usually starts in November when those with motivation and a heart filled with cheer decorate their homes and gardens with sparkly lights. The house across the road has seizure inducing strobe like lights and I am careful to shade my eyes from the glare. However the droves of people who drive from house to house gawking at the Christmas lights seem to love it. Voices ring out as strangers shout out festive greetings to each other through their car windows. Annoyingly it is sometimes hard to get out of your own driveway as you wait for the long lines of traffic to pass. Rest assured we don't add to the suburbs congestion, we never put up lights. Yeah, bit sad, but I figure there are plenty of others doing it on our behalf.
A funny thing happened a few weeks back. The man from next door who we never really talk to; we do keep to ourselves, knocked on the door to ask if it was okay if he decorated our large Christmas tree shaped conifer in our front garden. My daughter who answered the door told him to go for it. We laughed about it later, wondering of he was feeling pity for us, or just loved our large conifer.

This year like many before we wont have a full contingent of family here with us and I do admit to feeling a little sad. In Christmas's past that was the best thing about the season for me. The yearly shenanigans, the feasting on beautiful, delicious food. The jokes, laughter the joy felt at being together and having fun. Now our numbers have dwindled, due to loss and unhealthy family dynamics. So this year it will be the bloke, me, and three of our girls, one SIL, and of course our beautiful little boy Jacob. A quiet day, lovely food, maybe a movie or two, a nap and a good book I am hoping. The bloke has to go back to work boxing day so there wont be an extended festive season for him. Just another day we say.
I hope you all can find some joy in the season, no matter what that looks like.

I leave you with one of my favourite photos of this year.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Keeping it Simple


Simple food is often the best. Recently out fourth daughter was visiting us and cooked a lovely meal (see above picture) including her delicious potato bake. It tasted even better than before, and then she discovered she had used custard powder instead of cornflour in the sauce. It was a tad yellow but it tasted awesome. Maybe a secret ingredient?

What cooking mistakes have you made that enhanced a dish rather than ruined it?

With Christmas fast approaching and I say that with total denial, I am hoping my eldest daughter gets motivated and energised to do the baking required. I don’t have one inch of Christmas spirit in me. I feel flat, exhausted, sad, a little bit grinchy, (is that even a word) anxious-oh I could just go on but I’m not, for all our sakes. So many people tell me that I have a grandchild now, who will be 4 months old when the big day rolls around, so I have to be happy. Well I cannot be happier with him and I am trying to do my grandmother job well. This year he will like the paper much more than what the toy is. But in future years I will most certainly enjoy seeing his delight at the arrival of Father Christmas.

So now back to simple foods. Christmas this year will be just the bloke and I and three of the girls, my newly minted SIL and of course our darling little Jacob. The plan is to go to Jacob’s home for a nice light breakfast, maybe fruit, toast and whatever else we choose, then come back here for a lunch of cold meats including baked glazed ham, roast chicken, maybe a roast beef, German potato salad, garden salad, pasta salad with trifle and a nice refreshing homemade cheesecake for dessert. Leftovers will be consumed throughout the evening and even next day. See simple and delicious and easily prepared.

I know that I have been quiet here again and I can’t promise things will change, but I do value all of my readers and your comments really cheer me up.