Category: Recipies

Country File Live photos 2017 (by )

Country File Live was an amazing event with just so much going on - because I was working there I barely got a chance to snap things as I passed - the girls and Al also had a fab time but still felt that they had barely scratched the surface - Jean took photos on her iPad which we'll pop up in a different post. These are the snaps I took on the first day.

Snake with the reptiles and amphibian group Country File Live

This beautiful snake was part of a demonstration including handling by the Oxfordshire Amphibian and Reptile Group (I think!).

Blue dragonfly at Country File Live

I caught this blue dragonfly whilst taking a nap on some bails in front of the bee hive (head injury recovery means I have to take random naps but it is very surreal to conk out in public but I think it's working well).

Birds on the lake Country File Live

There was a lake with a wibbly wobbly bouncy but secure temporary bridge across it. It contained various birds and plants coming and going.

Tree face Country File Live

There were some great flower displays in the Wild Life Zone.

Metal Duck Country File Live

I love this duck - it is exactly the sort of thing I would buy Al if I had more money 🙂

Bikes and flowers in the wild life zone Country File Live

This bike display cheered me up even though it had just been bucketing it down!

tractor tractoring country file live

Tractors! I live like machines like tractors.

Ye old tractor Country File Live

I love old machines like tractors.

Vintage tractor Country File Live

Probably a good job I didn't have more time or there would have been hundred of flower and machine pics!

Old tractor Country File Live

I'm working on a series of machine colouring sheets for an event in the autumn as well to be fair - but I would have still taken all the photos regardless.

Tractor! Country File Live

I like the gubbings of machines.

Tractor bits Country File Live

I think they are pretty

Tractor parts Country File Live

These were all from a huge monster of a machine

Tractor gubbings Country File Live

Many people were taking photographs - elderly men mostly and a press officer.

Tractor swirls Country File Live

Everyone feels they need to ask me why I am taking photos of tractors or make jokes about it - this happens at car shows too.

Being a little bit batty at the Garden Stage with Oxford Mammale Group at Country File Live

We got Batty with the Oxfordshire Mammal Groups.

Foxes and Badgers with the Oxford Mammal Group at Country File Live

And met the cuddly foxes and badgers.

Oxford Mammal Group explain mice with cute cuddlies

And a squeaky little mouse 🙂

Mouse, fox and badger skulls country file live

And skulls of said animals - well actually in the photo there is a mouse skull, fox and badger.

Giant papier mache stage beetle at Country File Live

Insects also featured heavily including butterfly nets creches, many types of bees and this giant papier mache stag beetle!

Milk churn urn flower pots country file live

Milk churn flower display - this is similar to what I wanted when we lived at The Bakery though I was going to bare paint them so they didn't rust away.

Sheep sculptures at Country File Live

Sheep sculptures - love these though more from a making point of view if I am honest - I remember going to a Garden Show and seeing large metal dragons like this which I adored! If we ever get to do the Salaric Emporium idea and have a tea garden then this sort of thing will be in it (along with dinos and fairies!).

yellow water lilies on the lake Country File Live

These beautiful yellow water lilies where on the lake.

Go Wild Country File Live

Loved the giant Go Wild sing 🙂

Water plants Country File Live

Water plants on the lake - oh I probably should have mentioned that this was at Blenheim Palace.

Geese arriving on the lake at Country File Live

The geese kept landing and taking off from the lake and were pretty impressive!

Geese at Blenheim Palace Country File Live

There was plenty of garden ideas - especially those to help you have a greener more wildlife friendly garden - I like this shed but I'm pretty sure ours is falling down and couldn't take the extra strain!

A shed of flowers for the bees Country File Live

Food is a huge part of the event too - I caught sight of this fab cheese stall!

Cheese at Country File Live

And Kendal Mint Cake Laqueur!

Kendal Mint Cake Liqueur at Country File Live

And to end - more animal sculptures 🙂

Horse and deer sculptures at Country File Live

Big Food and Naps (by )

Big Food Christmas left overs

Yesterday I did an hour of work and then went for my 9 am nap, this is supposed to last half an hour and is part of the new regime to make the head injury go away but... I woke up at nearly 2 pm having slept through all my alarms.

To be fair before said nap I felt awful, really fluey and afterwards I felt really good and got lots done but it was frustrating as it felt like I'd waisted the day.

I hadn't even had breakfast so I decided to treat myself and had Christmas left overs that were frozen in the freezer and made some gravy. This was my meal for the day - it was good 🙂

Alaric has made me me safe paneer for today which I can just reheat and I was actually organised enough to sort us out a family only mocktales. Al did admin, Jean worked on her Foodverse and has actually managed to get it out of the planning stage and started writing it 🙂

I finished off my Storystorm with over 100 ideas for picture books - most of them are kind of one idea and would make a series - now all I need is time to write them! I also did some poetry writing once Jean had gone to bed - she was most helpful with my storystorming and looked things up on her tablet for me. Mary did not join in this Mocktales which was the first of the year (my bad!) as it was too late which made her a bit of a grumples but Daddy flew her to bed and she was a super hero so she was happy.

So yeah kind of did everything wrong yesterday - binge slept and ate one huge meal which was most of my cal allowance instead of spreading out over the day but was actually very productive in the end - still kind of feel guilty though!

The Jan Recap… (by )

It's the end of January so what has gone on in the household snell-pym in the first month of 2017?

For a start there was the end of Christmas, I am still making the last few Advent vids ready for Christmas next year. We delivered presents though sadly not all the presents so we still have a back log!

Also mine and Mary's birthdays - mine involved a coffee, meal and shopping with Al before hospital stuff but we have only just done the proper celebration with kids and friends this weekend just gone which was also Mary's birthday. There was also posh vegan/Gluten Free brunch. Mary has so far played in the Waterstones cafe with her friend Lilly as her party is going to be in two weeks time. We've planned the party and got stuff ready for it.

This includes me working out how to make upcycled unicorn head bands and tail belts and little roll and pop up horses for the kids to make.

My mother was hospitalised so there was a trip to Essex and the adventures of getting home on the train which were unexpected.

DIY wise we have fixed several toys, remounted a coat rack which had pulled off the wall, dealt with networking and upgrading Jean's computer.

We got a telescope - an amazing thing which was a pool of Christmas money instead of presents for Al and Jean and part of mine and Mary's birthdays. We've seen binary stars so far. It was an undertaking to assemble and we now need to build a storage/transport box but it is assembled and being looked through though we've only had like three clear nights!

I've had three lots of testing at the hospital which took it's toll and norovirus hit the household. I missed a theatre meeting about performing a monologue and a poetry recording evening but I am being given second chances at those so that's all good.

I also missed my Krav self defence one off class and a poetry book launch which made me sad but on the other hand I was live streamed reading poetry at Food For Thought.

Talking of poetry I have also been typing up and editing poems from the BOOKCASE (Not shelf) of notebooks I have. The shear number is insane obv. not all of it is usable but a lot is so I have been organising Turquoise Monster and have even started submitting work again (as in 2 poems so far). I've written three poems this month predictable all about Trump. Of course I am doing my poetry writing challenges so I've drafted a good few more mostly not about Trump.

Jan has also been me gearing up for the poetry writing challenge that I host over at Wopo.

I have also designed, refined and created mini poetry scrolls, story scrolls, made bookwallets etc... for blank scrolls for others to write poetry on, personalised pencils and made write your own poem kits, made and put together 100 mini zine surprise pouches, story boarded two more zines, drafted half a short story, edited a couple of flash fictions, tried to write daily on this blog and started on the mammoth task of trying to sort out the Salaric Craft blog.

Also Storystorm - what used to be Picture Book Idea Month has rebranded and moved to Jan. so I have been idea generating and expanding on those ideas for kids books.

Alaric has been making a cufflink holder for the cufflinks I made him for Advent, the girls have been making invites and decorations for Mary's party and we have all been working on the cosplay outfits for True Believers Comic Festival which is this weekend coming. This has involved sewing, sticking, painting, metal twisting, papier mache and buying new wellys.

I had to get a third print run of my colouring book Love: A Stranger Dream made and in general have been trying to sort out The WigglyPets Press.

I have been teaching myself origami and have folded lit. hundreds of things from geometric modules to make bigger things from to little stand up foxes to pretty little boxes.

We've organised things for getting back down the allotment, so just sorting out containers for soil etc...

I've knitted four hats, made an Ironman craft kit, taken the kids to two (not us) birthday parties. Three projects are still currently being designed and refined including mending a rocking horse that is older than me. I accidently made a pair of slippers from an old coat whilst trying to make a portal gun (please tell me this happens to other people!).

Alaric made my laptop usable again (for now) and we had a chicken fatality 🙁 and we had to fix the chicken run and stuff and general animal stuff to sort out. We've got our new electric car and there was pie making!

NB pie was not chicken Al is veggi!

Jean is still at Scouts, Jujitsu, and Drama and Mary is doing her Ballet, both girls are missing climbing but for one of the parties we did get to go "caving". Alaric is still doing Krav and Hackspace each week. Oh and of course we had to do my tax (sobs!).

There were also visits from and too various family.

So that was January - it snowed and it rained and there was scary fog.

A Flambe Lunch (by )

Bacon on fire

So yeah - looks like I still can't really cook on my own. I'm fine with popping something in the oven to heat and nuking stuff in the microwave and even things that cook quickly in the frying pan though I still tend to burn them. But yeah I was grilling some bacon, I knew it was an off day, I couldn't find half my craft supplies that turned out to be exactly where I left them and so on.

Issue - weekend was busy with poetry performances, kids parties and tax returns. I think it might have been the tax return I had to think about which years stuff happened in and that is often different to the year it was paid for in which might be a different calendar year to the tax year and might not. Al did the reciet checking but I still had to work out dates and where I'd filed (or hadn't filed) various invoices etc..

Basically I am on my own during the day, Al normally makes food for me to just nuke for lunch or I have dips and veg etc... but there wasn't time to organise that because the weekend was busy and I didn't even do everything we were supposed to do! ie I was supposed to have a self defence class - something kind of needed after the van being smeared in shit and yobs throwing sexual insaults at me and my daughter.

Getting back to it - I decided what I wanted was bacon because it was being a slow day and I couldn't get my head around anything so working was a no go. Everytime I tried to do my naps someone was at the door delivering stuff (yes Christmas stuff is still arriving at our house!!! And we still have presents to hand out - go us!). I put the bacon on, I don't like cooking it when Al is around because it stinks and he's a vegi and its not nice for him.

Not really sure what happened, I was in the kitchen, the bacon was under the grill, it smelt like bacon cooking and then suddenly it smelt like bacon burning and when I looked there were flames coming out of the grill and I was like "AARRRGGGGGGGG" I oiked the grill tray out singing my oven gloves (booo hissssss) and popped it in the garden where the flames where leaping and spitting as the rain hit the hot fat.

I looked for our fire putting out thing... cylinder. It wasn't there - this is because it is actually in the workshop where it is more likely to be needed but Al says we can get a fire blanket for the kitchen which will make me happier.

When I looked the flames had signif. calmed down in the rain and I thought it would be ok so I got my camera and took a pic - because you know that is just what I do! Here's a picture of my lunch or rather the lunch that would have been.

Of course I was then too worried about burning things to attempt making the kids dinner and was just setting them up with cheese and biscuits (remembering Mary can't eat cow milk and is refusing peanut butter I wasn't very sure what I was actually going to be feeding her - we were going to be having fish fingers but the grill tray was/is still in the garden and I am not sure it will be much good). To the girls delight and my relief Alaric came in brandishing shopping and started cooking pasta.

This meant Mary went to bed an hour past her bed time as he comes in just before her bedtime. So kind of failure - kind of funny - kind of scary - very frustrating but also I am starting to see the correlations with things. I did heavy brain load stuff (tax) whilst not having my naps - I will get there with this one but it is why Al worries about leaving me on my own.

Shakespearian Mock Tales (by )

Twelfth Night mocktail

Last night we had the second ever Mock Tales - 2 hours of stories and writing creativeness with sticky non-alcoholic cocktails. They were Shakespeare themed as it was his 400th birthday at the weekend 🙂

I did 20+ pages of my comic book script/story board and now know how this story arc ends, Alaric managed 5000 words of our joint novel/series.

There were 3 of us so I was limited as to how many drinks I could make!

Twelfth Night mocktail A midsummer nights dream mocktail The Scottish Drink for Shakespearian Mock Tales Tempest non alc. cocktail for Shakespearian Mock Tales

Above are Twelfth Night which was minty, Midsummer Nights Dream which was vanillary, The Scottish Drink which was fruity, and The Tempest which was Sugary.

We also had home made Pizza which was dairy and gluten free - Mary had opinions...

Mary proclaiming her dairy and gluten free pizza is yucky whilst grinning and grabbing the next slice

I remembered that when I was in secondary school I became obsessed with The Tempest as a story and drew the whole thing as a comic - I wonder if it survives somewhere? I loved the stop motion animations they did of the shakespeare stories I need to try and find them for the girls.

Jean tried a Tempest before she went off to best - she was a little horrified at it's stickiness - she still drank/ate it.

Jean being unimpressed by mocktail

Recipes are being written down for Salaric Cooking before people start prodding again 🙂

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