Monday, November 13, 2006


Well, I'm still tired. And a bit head-achey but I'm trying to ignore that for the moment.
After the beginnings of yet another sore throat on Friday I had an early night and decided to sleep till I woke on Saturday. Ended up sleeping for about ten hours and then stayed in bed for another hour or two reading. Got up to have a glass of water and chatted to my new housemate for a while then went back to bed to read for another half an hour. A friend rang just as I got there and I ended up on the phone to him for just over two hours. Wasn't planned for (and boy was I glad he was paying) but was great to talk to someone I haven't seen much of for years (he lives in Belgium). Was tired after that though so ended up sleeping for an hour.

Finally got up and cooked as I'd taken mince out to defrost and had to cook it. It was probably a good thing because I would have been tempted to get a take away otherwise which I really couldn't afford. I made half of it into shepherds pie sauce which tasted delicious but got frozen straight away for lunches. The other half became meatballs which I put into a tomato sauce made from some tomatoes I had left which were starting to get a bit soft. Added shallots and red onions, garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, black pepper and a tin of tomatoes to bulk it out a bit. Once I'd fried the meatballs just enough to get them to hold their shape I added them to the sauce and left it on a really low heat for an hour or so. Spent twenty minutes on the phone to my sister in France and then almost an hour on the phone to my sister who's travelling and is now in Florida. I was paying this time though and I really shouldn't have. I'm going to get hit with a huge phone bill this time round and should know better. Next time I get paid I'm going to buy some of those international call cards so that I have them already there on days I end up feeling like chatting to people miles away. The meatballs in tomato sauce were delicious with some boiled potatoes and enough left over for a couple of lunches this week too.

Had another early night on Saturday and slept nearly twelve hours. I have to watch this. I need to sleep a bit extra because I'm obviously run-down and keep getting sick and was trying to forestall that sore throat getting worse. However it's a very fine line between looking after yourself and getting lost in the kind of lethargy that results in/comes from depression. Especially in the winter, it's too tempting to just roll over and stay in bed all day. I did get up and have a shower and made a start on cleaning my room by putting away all the laundry that had built up over the last month or so. This involved moving all the stuff (mainly spare duvets and bedclothes) which was blocking my wardrobe so yesterday evening I also managed to get most of that stuff sorted out and it now just needs me to move the tallboy blocking the cupboard to put them away. It's all quite complicated but this is what happens when you live in a small rented house and have some of your own furniture. I have a tallboy which I don't want to part with and which I do use but it sits in front of a built-in cupboard in my room. I only use that cupboard for storing stuff that isn't used very often but sometimes I end up with a mess because I'm waiting for one thing to happen so that something else can happen, which means something else can happen and so on and so forth. And while waiting for all those things to happen (all of which are waiting for me to do them!) everywhere becomes messier and messier and more difficult to deal with. Anyway, I've made a good start on it and will hopefully finish it up next weekend, including scrubbing the newly found surfaces till they sparkle.

I did go out yesterday and ventured to Blackrock Market where I had a nice chat with the woman in This Is Knit and bought some wool to start on a scarf for my brother. I also started on that yesterday evening but since it's my first time doing a rib it took me four attempts before I got the hang of it and didn't end up with four or five extra stiches each row. Doesn't look quite as good as the one they had in the shop but I'm pretty impressed with myself regardless.

Yesterday I finally made the healing herb and barley broth I've wanted to make for ages. Very delicious although I may have left it in a bit long as there's not much "broth" left in the pot. Still, tastes good and is very filling. I also finally cooked the butternut squash I bought weeks ago and have decided I'm still undecided about whether I like it or not. I cooked the recipe which was on River Cottage Treatment last week, roasting the halves with butter and garlic in the hole and then mashing the squash with some feta and shredded basil and putting the whole lot back in the skins and roasting for another 15 minutes. It was nice but I found it a bit sweet or something. I'd probably cook it again if I found local squash but I don't think I'd go out of my way for it. Glad I tried it though. If anyone wants the proper recipe it's in the Sieved Tomatoes thread on the River Cottage website:

Booked my car in to get the brakes done next week. Might need to leave the car in over the weekend so am psyching myself up to live without the car for the weekend. Really, unless I'm going away for the weekend I could manage without it fairly easily. I'm going to phone a few contacts and try and book some Tupperware parties this week but if I don't manage to do that I have to seriously consider whether to keep the car or not. Other than for the handiness of it that is!

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