Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Black Friday to Cyber Monday

If you’re shopping online over this weekend and you’re Googling for gifts, you might come across one of my ads. There are the products I’m running ads for. They are targeted at the US market but some of them do overseas shipping. Sell Christmas lights all the year round, indoor and outdoor, lots of imaginative designs. Accessories and other decorations too Their artificial Christmas trees are made in America. Don’t Ship outside the U.S.

Abernook: lots of ideas for imaginative gifts for all of the family – all occasions. Now ship abroad

Timeless Message In A Bottle: These are unique ‘Message in a Bottle’ gifts. For shipping outside the US you will need to email them Thousands of personalized gifts for every occasion you can imagine, especially Christmas. From Friday 26th to Monday 30th; Cyber Monday - Deal 25% off at A Gift Personalized, code 25offall

All About Gifts and Baskets: Amazing Gift Baskets and cookies galore,some for under $25! Only ship to mainland US Oh la la lingerie for the larger lady – why should the slim ones have all the fun? Ship Internationally Natural and Organic beauty products. Get ready for the party season. FREE Priority Mail Shipping over $100, Ship to US and Canada only

Strapya Inc All the little bits and pieces to make your cell phone complete as well as anime. Look out for special offer codes on website. Ship worldwide

OrnamentShop: Choose from over 3000 personalised decorations for every occasion, especially Christmas; This is also the website where you will find real Piggy banks. Shipping to US only as far as I can see.

Well that’s my little contribution to Christmas shopping 2010.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I’ll show you mine if you’ll show me yours

In reply to Sue’s Tuna Fish Pie, here’s the recipe that I use to make Impromptu Tune Fish Casserole. It comes from The Sainsbury’s ‘American Sampler’ by Patricia Lousada, published in 1982

2oz (50g) butter
1 green or red pepper, seeded and chopped
7oz (198g) can of tuna fish, drained and flaked
8oz (225g) Chinese or other egg noodles
10 1/2oz (295g) can of condensed cream of celery or mushroom soup
5fl oz (150ml) carton of single cream
½ teaspoon (2.5ml spoon) curry powder (optional)
1oz (25g) fresh bread crumbs

Gently heat 1oz (25g) of the butter in a small frying pan and sauté the pepper until it is soft. Remove from the heat and stir in the tuna.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, bring 4 pints (2.5 litres) of water to the boil, add 1 tablespoon (15ml spoon) salt* and the noodles and boil briskly until the noodles are ‘al dente’ – with quite a bit of bite left in them. Drain the noodles, pour them into a greased ovenproof dish and toss with the remaining butter. Pour the tuna and pepper mixture over the noodles.

Empty the soup into a bowl and mix in the cream, and the curry powder if you are using it. Pour this soup mixture over the tuna and sprinkle with the breadcrumbs. Bake in a pre-heated oven, Gas Mark 7/425°F/220°C, for 15-20 minutes.

*This much???!

I’ve adapted the recipe over the years as I couldn’t find good old condensed soup here. I made up packet leak and potato soup and thickened it with flour or I made a sauce using whatever vegetables I had, flour and milk I also use pasta to make it too.

Anyone else got a tuna recipe they’d like to share?

The invasion of the hornets...

Continuing the hornets saga. Our Mairie (town hall) is situated in the park and I walk through the park every morning. This morning, returning home, I was very surprised to see blue flashing lights and a fire-fighter’s van coming into the grounds. The fire-fighters were greeted by our village policewoman who pointed to a huge hornet’s nest high up in one of the trees It was like a huge ball suspended from a branch. Now the leaves are almost gone from the trees it had come into view. At that point I met Robert, my elderly friend, so we watched them looking at it and he told me that someone had pointed out another nest to him in a tree in the middle of the village. Hopefully next year we will be rid of them.

When we were small, my two sisters were attacked by a swarm of bees one hot Sunday morning. The owner of the hive decided to move them (not a good idea on a hot day). Years later people were still giving us advice on what to do if you see a swarm coming. Lie face down on the ground, the swarm will fly over you. When they are swarming the angry bees stick to and sting whatever gets in their way.

An amusing review of ‘The Girl who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest’ film.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Dance of the young lovers

I had my first Christmas card this morning from my aunt. She included a newspaper cutting about my cousin Paul who is going to have his beard and hair cut off for charity in the new year. Here’s the story and a podcast.

This is one of the songs from his Blood, Fish and Bone album, Dance of the young lovers. His blog is here

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It’s called progress

Since the beginning of the year we can’t buy the old type of light bulbs. I’ve been replacing old with new low energy ones as they stop working. The new ones are awful, not as strong as they say they are and take three minutes to get up to power. My retired student says that she and her husband have one on their stairs, very dangerous for elderly people (they are both in their 80s). Before we always turned off the light when we left a room, now we tend to leave them on. The worst part is knowing that I shouldn’t have to change them until 2018.

Secondly, our region of France has now switched over to numeric TV. J-M very kindly fixed us up with his old box and an internal aerial. Up until the change over we did have more channels and then they went strange on us, but I discovered that this would be normal in the days prior to changeover. Since the changeover we can get 3 of the old channels (there used to be 6) and two new ones. That means 5 out of the 19 we were promised. We do have an old telly. Fortunately, Rob watches the news and that’s about all. I watch Cold Case (on a channel we still receive) but I can’t watch Medium or N.C.I.S. anymore.

Oh well, there is always ironing to do I suppose.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Happy Birthday!

Happy birthday to Dom, 22 years old today.

Here she is when she was three being an elf at the school end of year festivities.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Another one gone...

Sometimes you find a new blog only to find it’s gone. Today it’s the turn of Dufusdownbeat, a music blog, to bite the dust. The last post is about the Rolling Stones’ Under My thumb, with a clip from Ready Steady Go.

It made me think of one of the presenters, Cathy Mcgowan, we all wanted to be like her, all of that lovely shiny hair. My research led me to this little gem of her miming and messing about with the Rolling Stones – and don’t they look young?  Thanks to Dufus.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Hidden benefit

A few days ago I hurt the side of my foot in the edge of a rocker on a rocking chair. The pain kept me awake for two nights with its coming and going. There was no swelling at all and walking was no problem. I’d also had difficulty sleeping because right my shoulder and elbow were aching (too much computer probably)

No pain at all today (the part of my hand which was stung is better too). Then I remembered something about bee stings being used as treatment for arthritis. I checked to see if I could find anything about the medicinal benefits of hornet stings. Nothing really as bee stings come up on Google more. Has anyone any ideas?

Friday, November 12, 2010


I was just getting the washing inside when I disturbed a European Hornet on my pullover which stung me. I’m applying an ice pack - it hurts a lot.

Lots of sympathy please.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

A lucky escape

Rob and I had planned to got to an auction in Chinon on Monday. This involved travelling the day before and staying overnight n a hotel. Just like we did last year in September. As we’d be going by train we knew that once there, we would be relying on the once a day bus service to get to the auction house on the outskirts of town. When the catalogue came it soon became apparent that by the time they got to any of the bids we might be interested it we’d have left to catch the bus.

For the last two days we’ve had storms and rain, especially on our coast. We’re so glad we didn’t go, we’d have been stuck in the middle of nowhere with nowhere to go in the cold wind and rain.

Friday, November 05, 2010

The river of life flows on

I’ve been to see the doctor twice recently. Once for the usual check up and renewed prescription; All of my test/examination results are excellent. This week I had my flu vaccination which apparently includes the new flu too. I also asked him to look at my knee which I injured two months ago. It still has a swelling on the side. There’s fluid trapped in it, I’ve got to massage it with some gel every night for a couple of months and it will disappear – hopefully.

I was suffering from headaches for about a month. I tried to resist taking too much paracetamol because it gives you… headaches! I cured it by buying a new pillow. - Woke up the next day feeling completely different and no headaches since.

Our doctor will be retiring at the end of the year. He’s been here since I was expecting Dom, she’ll be 22 in ten days time. That’s an awful lot of family history passing under the bridge. He’ll be replaced by a lady doctor.

Talking about time passing. Have a look at this. You have to scroll down to read what it’s about.