Thursday, 30 June 2016

Leftovers on Leftovers

There seems to be something about my kitchen that make the men in my life want to take it over.   Not that I'm complaining.  Bring it on I say!   Think back to all that cupcake cooking by Louis and Mr Metrosexual last week.  Reiki Ray has turned up before, not just with his therapy table, but also with the ingredients for a quorn chilli.  And now Corn Pipe is the latest to shoo me away from my own hot stove.   He knocked up steak, veggies and a variant of dauphinoise potatoes. Thinly sliced spuds were layered in a dish with cream and oodles of garlic. The dish was topped with a smattering of diced bacon and grated mature cheddar.  Very good it was too.  I was particularly pleased to find leftovers of that in the fridge the next day snuggling up to the remains of a batch of my old staple, daily dal.  Both needed using up pronto.

So here's what I came up with yesterday.  I popped a layer of the dal in one of our lunch pots, added a handful of baby plum tomatoes and then topped it with some of those lovely garlicky potatoes.   All it needed was a blast from the microwave at work and hey presto a brand new meal! This all goes to prove that leftovers can be the dog's doo-dahs.  It was divine,  the best lunch I've had for ages!

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Sky Rise Baby

Oh 'kin 'ell!  I knew exactly what I was going to blog about this morning and the website that I needed is down.  *"%&£%%^^)*£$!    Let's find something quick to stop those unbecoming fish wife mutterings.

Ah,  this will do.  It's a little treasure that I found and  I copied to my desktop .  I'm sure that little boy has a head for heights to this day!  Of course it hails from days before nameless, faceless Health and Safety officials went absolutely mad and came out with enormous balls of cotton wall with which to wrap us.  I' have fond memories from more precarious times myself.   Maybe, in modern times where new builds seem so skimpy on space, this idea could catch on again - until that is, Social Services find out!

Tuesday, 28 June 2016


I'm all too aware that I haven't blogged about the course by the Sensory Integration Network  that I went on a couple of weeks ago. It's not an oversight on my part.  Most of the time my posts are of 'the quick and dirty' variety, knocked up whilst I sup my first cup of tea.  Hell, on a good day I can even manage to complete two and schedule one ahead for later so I can have a  nifty lie-in on another day. What I learned on my course about sensory integration and older adults was so important that I want to write  in a way that does it justice.  Maybe over a few posts.    It'll take a little time, a resource that seems to be in short supply at the moment. So you'll have to wait.

As a precursor to what I'm want to share please take a few moments to watch this video or read the article contained in this link.  They're both from an old episode of the BBC's 'Horizon'. They make apparent the extent of the suffering that can come around when healthy working aged adults spend just a short time in a sensory deprived environment.  Now I work with elderly people with dementia whose diet of sensory stimulants suffers not just from living in underwhelming environments but as a consequence of the physiological processes of ageing.  A recent piece of  work by Pinto  found that 94% of older adults in a sample suffered at least one sensory deficit.  And that's after adequately corrected sight and hearing loss were ignored for the purpose of this study!

A penny has dropped. Many of the people that I work with must suffer sensory deprivation day in day out at a level which is bewildering at the least but maybe more often and not frightening.  Torturous in fact!  No wonder they behave oddly, lash out and put themselves in situations of danger.  The course was billed as 'life changing learning'.  It certainly was.  I feel that I would be negligent of me not to incorporate the teaching from the day into practice.

Monday, 27 June 2016

Talking About Trump

'I met a really sweet old lady on the bus today' said Louis after he'd got home from school this week.  I mentally considered what age constituted elderly in his eyes.  Fifty five maybe?

'And I decided she needed to know all about Donald Trump'.  Ye gods!  Those alarm bells started ringing.

'You didn't tell her  that he'd said that he'd like to sleep with his daughter did you?'  I asked tentatively.

Louis shook his head vehemently.  'Of course not!'. Then there was a pause....of the pregnant variety.  'Oh, okay, actually I did'.

A swathe of embarrassment came over me.  After all my son's voice isn't exactly on the quiet side. The whole bus must have been in stitches.

I finally mustered up the courage to speak again.  'What did she say?'

The answer was priceless.  'Well' said the 'old' lady.  'I'm so glad you've shared that.  Now that I know,  if I was American  I wouldn't vote for him!'.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Prickly Pressie

'I've bought you a present Mum' said Louis after he'd visited the craft fair last week.  Am I the only parent who feels some trepidation when these words are uttered?  After all kids often have a completely different idea  to adults of what constitutes beautiful and worth giving house room.  Those dolphins last year were a case in point.  I HAD to say something then.

I needn't have worried this time around for this teeny porcelain planter around three inches high, arrived at home via a sports bag.  It then spent about four days in the dark as Lou forgot it was there.   Amazingly its contents survived intact.   It came complete with cactus or is it  aloe vera?  My botanical knowledge of desert dwelling plants is pretty limited.

It's designed by Jack Laverick whose range of geometrically themed lamps and planters have a pleasing simplicity that is nothing like some of the kitsch stuff that has been gifted before. Phew!  I'm pretty chuffed with my little spiky plant and will try to tend it carefully.  Who knows, if it survives it can be potted up into a larger container by the same maker, maybe the hanging conical one.  The prices are pretty reasonable after all. 

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Big Stranger Rodeo

There's 48% of us on this small island nation of ours who don't know whether to laugh or cry at the moment.  Hell, let's have a comedic moment to take our minds off things shall we? Thanks Corn Pipe for bringing the ten year old programme Balls of Steel to the attention of me and Louis.  Here's an intensely silly little clip  that brought cross-generational mirth to the Lovelygrey household.  My boy's giggle is a fine thing that never fails to lift my spirits!

Friday, 24 June 2016

Crocs For A Wedding

The excitement is mounting!   At the end of next month I will be the proud owner of a gorgeous sister-in- law.  I've never had one of those before.  With the super special wedding in the offing I've been putting together an outfit that befits the sister of the groom.  It's all the more important now that  I look tip top as I've accepted the invitation to do a reading at the ceremony.  I'm not sure what it is yet but I thought that I could always substitute this sweet little Pam Ayres poem at the last moment if it's too bollocksy and arty!

You'll have to wait for the big day to see what I ensembled.  Needless to say I won't be fading into the background  But I thought I'd let you have a sneak preview of my shoes.  I gave my brother a minor heart attack yesterday by announcing on my Facebook page that 'My Crocs for your wedding have arrived!'  After all my trademark footwear since adolescence has been from the clumpy genre.  I am a bitter disappointment to Mama Lovelygrey who loves her high heels but they truly aren't not a good look on me.   In the absence of a finishing school education I end up walking like a pissed bloke in drag on a stag night.  And that's even before I've had a glass or two of vino.

Fear not little bro' for even though I am your embarrassing big sister I know a style faux-pas when I see one. So  I'm not about to turn up for your big day wearing a pair of the  holey clogs that are the signature look of this footwear brand.  I'm far too vain for that anyway.   No, instead I've gone for the Leigh II Graphic Wedge,  which are in the sale at the moment in Croc's UK online store.  They tick all the required comfort boxes but also look pretty dead funky.