Life Last Week: Bests & Worsts

Bests

1.   Will’s new job.  I think I mentioned either in a blog post or a vlog recently, that Will was waiting to hear about a job at the local solicitors, where he’d done work experience last term.  I’m pleased to report that they finally got it sorted for him, and he’s been really enjoying himself.  He’s just started his final full week there before school starts again next week.

2.   BBQ.  We hosted a barbecue last weekend for a bunch of friends and their teenagers who we met through Will’s primary school many years ago.  It was lovely to catch up with everybody, the rain held off, and we all had a really nice evening, with lots of reminiscing about when the kids were little.

3.   Taunton Day Out.  My best friend and I had a lovely day out in Taunton together last week to celebrate both our birthdays this month.  Although we we decided it wasn’t a place we’d want to revisit, we enjoyed a browse around the shops, a few glasses of vino and a nice meal.  It’s always nice to take a day out of our busy schedules just to spend time together, and it’s become an annual tradition now.  I wonder where we’ll end up next year?

4.   Reliable Tradesmen.   I have a flat that is rented out to tenants, which is 100 miles from where we live now.  Finding tradesmen when things need fixing is always a problem from 100 miles away, but just recently I’ve found some really nice, helpful, genuine people through the Checkatrade website, who have done a great job, on time, kept me informed and not charged the earth.  Win!

Worsts

1.   Guests Not Turning Up.  One of the couples invited to our above-mentioned barbecue did not turn up.  Or let us know they weren’t coming.  Or apologise afterwards.  They’d accepted the invitation weeks in advance, and I text them the day before to confirm the start time and that we would be going ahead whatever the weather.   They replied to the text saying they were looking forward to it.  And then didn’t turn up.  I haven’t heard another thing from them.  How unbelievably rude.

2.   New Computer Problems.  My old iMac was past its best, so I replaced it with a shiny new one last week.  I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice to say I lost the best part of a week trying to iron out annoying glitchy tech issues that really should not happen when you migrate from one Mac to another.  It’s still not completely sorted.  Grrr.

3.   The ‘Summer’ Weather  It has rained every day for the last week, here in Devon.  It’s been dark, cloudy and generally miserable.  I can’t wait to go away on holiday – how I loathe the British weather.

M.I.A.

Just a very quick post to say sorry for the lack of posts this last week – life has just got in the way of blogging, as it has a habit of doing occasionally.

I lost a day and a half this week due to new iMac teething problems – don’t you HATE getting a new computer?!  So I’ve been frantically playing catch-up since then, particularly as I have my annual birthday day out with my BF tomorrow – we’re off to Taunton for the day.

I’m calling this week a write-off as far as blogging is concerned, but rest assured there are posts and vlogs bubbling away in the pipeline, and I shall be back with a bang very shortly.

Hope you’re all having a fabulous summer (she says, ironically, having spent the entire day with the lights on, looking out at driving rain and black cloud – gotta love August in England, eh?!).

x

Currently: August

Book

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I’ve just started this book, by one of my longtime favourite authors, and it looks as though it’s going to be a good read.

Music

Ashley’s Lana Del Rey CD is in my car for some reason, and every time I switch on the engine, she starts her miserable wailing, for about two seconds until I switch over to the radio. By the time I get to wherever I’m going, I’ve forgotten the damn thing is in there – I must remember to take it out. Talk about depressing.

TV

250px-Scandal_Season_3

I am absolutely glued to Scandal on USA Netflix at the moment. I’ve just finished the third season, and it really is one of those series when I find myself saying ‘oh, just one more episode, then …’ It’s been the cause of many late nights since we got back from holiday!

Make-Up/Beauty

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In an effort to streamline my morning routine, I’ve decided to pick one eye shadow palette to use each week, rather than flitting from one to the other each day. This week’s choice is this one, which is a dupe of the much more expensive (and difficult to get hold of in the UK) Lorac Pro Palette.

Frequently Worn Outfits/Items

Pastel coloured jeans and black tops seem to be my summer uniform this year.   The weather’s been pretty changeable here, not many floaty summer dresses in evidence!

Food

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We’ve been enjoying tapas style eating in the evenings lately. Lots of snacky type things rather than a big meal. It just seems to suit us all at the moment.  We did have a delicious fish pie on Sunday evening, though, to use up lots of bits of fish we had floating around in the freezer.

Drink

Mostly water. I cut down on tea and coffee hugely during the summer, without even trying to.

Bane

Rubbish summer weather. Raining cats and dogs this morning.

Joy

11355820_1157913594223484_1369217804_nSilver toenails and tanned legs. Shallow, I know, but they’re just making me happy.

Anticipation

We’re having a BBQ this coming Saturday for a group of friends who were all parents of kids in Will’s primary school class. There will be about 20 of us in total, parents and kids. Lazily, I’m replicating the exact food and drinks menu I did for the last party we had, a couple of months ago, for Ashley’s staff, which was a similar number of people and went down well.

Wishlist

I haven’t had time to even think about browsing any shopping websites since getting back from holiday, so my wishlist is pretty non-existent at the moment. I do have a Pinterest beauty product wishlist board, though, which I’m always adding to.

Random Thought

Eye test this afternoon – I wonder if I’m going to need glasses or not?

Recipe: Summer Sweet Chilli Chicken

Photo 30-07-2015 19 36 34Much as I love my slow cooker, I find myself using it far less during the summer months, but this is a recipe that is the exception to the rule as it’s perfect for summer – light, fresh and delicious.  Oh, and easy to prepare in advance, of course, so you can sit and enjoy a nice glass of something cool, rather than slave in the kitchen for hours – my kinda cooking!

Ingredients

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3 to 4 people

  • 2 good sized chicken breasts
  • 1 small tin of pineapple
  • 1 tin of kidney beans
  • 1 medium mango, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 chilli, chopped finely
  • Fresh ginger, chopped finely
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Sweet chilli sauce
  • Fresh coriander

instructions

Add all the ingredients except the coriander to the slow cooker.  With regard to the spices and chilli sauce, add amounts to your own tastes – we like it fairly hot, but if you don’t, you may want to leave out the chilli and just use the sweet chilli sauce.

Approximate cooking times are 4 hours on high, or 8 on low.

If it’s looking too runny, leave the lid off the slow cooker for the last hour to thicken the mixture.  I do this with almost everything I cook in the slow cooker.

Once cooked, shred the chicken, then mix back in, and serve with rice – jasmine rice goes rather well with this.  Add chopped coriander before serving.

Like I said, super easy and super tasty.  Let me know what you think if you make it.