Thursday, May 31, 2012


Found this great little video on youtube.  Apologies to those of you who don't speak German, just posting it so I can come back and find it later. :)

What can I say?  I'm easily amused.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

How to make Worcestershire sauce

Mark and Bruce posted a recipe for Worcestershire sauce recently and I, true to form, am taking a few weeks to get around to trying it out at home.  I have choir rehearsal all day next Saturday so it's likely that I won't be able to get to the spice shop until the week after.  I have a few days off towards the end of June so I am putting it in my diary for then.  Anyone care to join in on a cook-along?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Let's get started again so

I miss blogging.  I miss writing stuff out of myself.  Need to get started with it again, not least in an effort to regain a bit of sanity in my life.  Still struggling a bit with a lot of emotion and trying not to let it pull me under.

I had something of an epiphany with regard to my impulses over the last few months to buy, buy, buy more and more stuff - most of which I have resisted, but it was puzzling me a bit where it was all coming from.  I know part of it was the prospect of being potentially debt-free soon and therefore having more disposable income available.  But that's not the whole story.

I've come to realise that most of the stuff I want to buy is househould related which eventually led me to the realisation that actually, I just don't feel at home where I live.  This has nothing to do with not liking the place I'm living in and everything to do with the fact that I haven't made it into a home.  I feel like I don't know how to and that is what I am going to have to work on now.

Part of the issue stems from having lived in rented places for so long.  In Ireland, unlike Germany, the vast majority of places are rented furnished, with rarely even enough space to fit in a bookshelf of your own.  So you just live with what someone else has chosen.  In Germany, of course, you quite literally have to bring the kitchen sink with you.  When you move in somewhere you get bathroom fittings (sink, toilet and bath/shower) and that is it.  You bring your own lights with you, your own furniture, your own kitchen.  Partly because I didn't have a lot of money and partly because I like the idea of re-using when possible, I bought mostly second-hand furniture as and when I had the money and whenever I saw something that looked vaguely suitable and so I am again living in the kind of place that is just like any rented place in Ireland - a mish-mash of different stuff, practical but not necessarily aesthetically pleasing or well thought out.  And yet I don't think I have one piece of furniture that I would like to get rid of.

Essentially the problem is that I do want to live in a place that expresses my personality.  And something more than the chaos that has been much of my personality the last few years.  The real core of myself, I suppose (although putting it like that seems a bit of a tall order for furniture to fulfil).  Of course, figuring out what that is and what it looks like when translated into furnishings and decorations isn't all that easy to do.  Hence the temptation to just buy more and more stuff - completely buying into the "look how great your life would be if only your home looked like this" mindset.

It's going to take me a while to get there but understanding where it is I sort of want to get to and why is a good start.  So after all that I did make a purchase - 20 frameless  photo frames.  I started to do this when I lived in a house in Ireland where, unusually, we were allowed to hang some of our own paintings and photos.  I put up about ten of my favourite photos.  After moving here I added a few to that number and hung them on the wall above where I put my desk.  And there I stopped.   But the idea was to cover a large part of the wall with photos.  So while I was laid up sick with a cold a couple of weeks ago, I spent some time looking through the big box of photographs I have that have never made it into albums and took out some more that I would actually like to be looking at on a regular basis.  It's a small start but that's how every journey begins I suppose.