Sunday, January 29

chocolate banana bliss

It started with 3 over-ripe bananas in the fruit bowl. . .
followed by a thoughtful flick of cook book pages. . .
a meeting of eggs oil flour cocoa and sugar. . .
and ended with a VERY gluttonous afternoon tea

The question I have to ask myself
(with the hindsight of chronic indigestion)
is how many chocolate banana muffins
count as TOO many chocolate banana muffins??!

3 very ripe bananas
125ml vegetable oil
2 eggs
100g soft light brown sugar
225g plain flour
3 x 15ml tablespoons best-quality cocoa powder, sifted
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 x 12-bun muffin tin

Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6 and line a muffin tin with papers. Mash the bananas by hand or with a freestanding mixer.Still beating and mashing, add the oil followed by the eggs and sugar. Mix the flour, cocoa powder and bicarb together and add this mixture, beating gently, to the banana mixture, then spoon it into the prepared papers. Bake in the preheated oven for 15–20 minutes, by which time the muffins should be dark, rounded and peeking proudly out of their cases. Allow to cool slightly in their tin before removing to a wire rack.

Friday, January 20

back in the land of the living!

Thankyou all for the kind comments, emails, phonecalls, hugs,
cards and cakes that arrived following my recent mishap.
I'm touched by such thoughtfulness
even though I don't really "know" any of you.
Pleased to report that I'm mending well in spite of feeling a bit
sheepish about my own stupidity!
Bruce is enjoying a winter holiday getting hairier,
muddier. . .and needless to say fatter by the day.

Enforced time indoors has seen me clearing through the
stockroom cupboards where I found these two
vintage magazines from opposite ends of the spectrum-
A 1975 Valentines edition of Jackie and a 1927 copy of Home Notes

such a contrast between the elegance and simple lines
shown in the fashions of the Twenties, and the funky fabness of
teenage life in the Seventies

The adverts in both magazines make great reading!

The topic of making an income from home is obviously
a timeless one. . .

which era do you prefer?

Monday, January 9

from ouch. . .to !!!!OUCH!!!!

After the popping champagne corks at Christmas, our anniversary and New Year, my birthday at the beginning of January always falls a bit flat.
In 2011 I clearly remember saying "you know I'd really like to do something different for my birthday next year". . .

I woke on Saturday morning quite breathless and light headed and didn't put up much resistance when Mark said he was taking me to A & E.

X-Rays showed I had a punctured lung caused by my broken ribs and I spent a very un-jolly weekend strapped to an oxygen mask.

I've been allowed home today but must report back on Wednesday for further X-Rays to check its not collapsed any further.

A birthday to remember for all the wrong reasons- be careful what you wish for!

(and yes to all of you who've asked, I'm afraid Bruce did have a hand [or rather a hoof] in this mishap)

Friday, January 6

eating those words. . .

. . ."this year is going to be such a good one". . .you recall reading that sentence in my last post. . .?
Famous last words.
I had an unfortunate little accident and started the year with 2 cracked ribs, and one side of my chest is magnificently multi-coloured (a black-and-bloob?)

You couldn’t make it up could you?
I’m sure I'd see the funny side of it if only laughing wasn't so painful!!

Looking forward to 2013. . .
Calamity Elaine

Sunday, January 1

2012- bring it on!

Christmas Eve. . .The horses settled in their stables, the sound of rustling straw so perfectly apt for this evening as we bid them goodnight. Midnight Mass at our tiny local church, no more than 20 hardy souls in the congregation, puffs of breath rising in the air as we sing rousing carols and vie for warmth from the tiny radiator. Walking home afterwards guided by torchlight through the eerily dark woods singing schoolday words to the hymns. The cat coming to meet us, cream-tipped tail held aloft like a beacon to light the way. Drinking nightcaps in front of the woodburner.

Christmas Day. . .Champagne and presents. Carols on the radio. Cosily reading our books in front of the fire. Cooking Christmas dinner together and not eating until early evening. Downton Abbey. Heartfelt peace and goodwill.

Boxing Day. . .Traditional bubble-and-squeak lunch, getting together with friends. Returning fresh-faced from a windswept ride on Bruce and scoffing chocolate cake (me not him- he had carrots).

Our Wedding Anniversary. . .Soppy cards. Red roses. A "day out" to Swanage in the pouring rain. Waiting 45 minutes in a crowded coffee shop for toasted cheese sarnies, holding hands and laughing as we people-watched and got hungrier and hungrier.

New Years Eve. . .Walking along the beach at Lyme Regis with dear friends. Finding fossils, and skimming stones into the sea for their dog to fetch. Hearty pub lunch (like we needed more food). Staying awake til midnight and letting off a huge firework in the garden. Shouting "Happy New Year" into the darkness and toasting 2012 as it arrives.

New Years Day. . .this year is going to be such a good one- no Resolutions, just an aim to make to the most of every day and stop worrying.

Bring it on! xx
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