Sunday, February 08, 2015

Sun rises, sun sets | Music

Only in the last couple of days have I beared any resemblance to a human being. The past few weeks have been an absolute whirlwind of travelling [I can still see my unpacked suitcase sitting at the bottom of my bed, sending out disapproving vibes], baking, working, commuting, and then working some more. In 7 days I worked and travelled for more than 95 hours, and when I calculated that I wanted to die a little bit inside.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Skidding into illicit activities | Music

The new year! A year so far filled with broken resolutions [see here for cake], night shifts, and the icy grip of winter hitting Glasgow with a vengeance.

Even leaving my flat has become fraught with tension, as I try to combine balancing my surprisingly heavy work bag [filled with ever-disappearing black pens and posh pot noodles] with lowering my centre of gravity and doing a kind of crouch-shuffle across the ice to get to a patch of tarmac. An old woman striding past with spikes on her boots looked at me pityingly as I got stranded in a particularly bad patch, and actually offered to help me out, like an urban mountain rescue. Only slightly less embarrassing than when an old man offered me some of his spare weights in an ill-advised body pump class.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Molten chocolate & chestnut torte with pears

So, here's the thing. Resolutions are all fine and well, but it's very hard to keep one resolution [let's say - eating healthily] when it directly contradicts another resolution [blogging more often]. If this were a Venn diagram, these two circles have the teeniest tiniest overlap, which mainly consists of courgette spaghetti, coffee, and porridge.

This is not in the overlap. This is nowhere near the overlap. However, it is incredibly delicious, and if, like me, you have the remains of a jar of chestnut purée in the fridge [and who doesn't?] then this is the perfect dinner-party dessert to ease into the new year. If your resolution is to keep gluten-free, go right ahead, but if your resolutions are similarly healthy - stay back. Ahead lies dangerous territory. Or go for a big long run.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

And the clock struck midnight

I’ve just snuck in with my Christmas post before the deadline – I’m actually writing this from my on-call room at work, whilst things are all settled and nobody’s sick [a Christmas miracle!]. Whilst you’re all tucking into turkey and anxiously watching people open your presents, spare a thought for the poor souls who’ve been roped into working the Christmas shifts. Short straws have been pulled, favours promised, and rota co-ordinators bribed to no avail.

Despite having to postpone my Christmas until Boxing Day, I’m full of the festive spirit [as per usual]. I’ve been extra-prepared and had bottles of spiced damson gin, peach schnapps and apple & ginger bourbon liqueur infusing away in a dark cupboard for the past 3 months – turns out my plan of forgetting about them has worked perfectly and nothing exploded or has given anyone botulism [so far].

Monday, December 22, 2014

Any excuse | Mince pie spiced Irish cream and Salted caramel & chestnut Irish cream

We take our Christmas drinking seriously in my family. Champagne for breakfast (naturally), wine with Christmas lunch, a gin and tonic later on as we're settling in to play a board game, and then, at some point, my Dad will offer to make a round of Irish coffees. Always. The only acceptable excuse for declining is because you're still full from the second helping of sticky toffee pudding, and even then, you've got to pull your socks up really.

So it comes as a surprise to no-one that many of the presents for my family are alcoholic - for one thing, they make an excellent addition to the 'Now Drink This' game we get going every NYE, and for another - it's incredibly simple to make your own liqueur. It's even simpler to make your own Irish cream [ie knockoff but much tastier Bailey's].

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Bright lights, big city, bigger appetite

So this month started off rather inauspiciously, as I spilled an entire carton of soup inside my handbag on my way to work. Homemade soup, to be fair, but weirdly enough the fact that I had roasted the pumpkin myself didn't make it any less irritating as it got inside my purse, my stethoscope, all four of the lipsticks I somehow found in there, and, worst of all, my iPod.

Mourning for the eponymous iPod had to be cut short though, as my long-awaited annual leave meant that I was on a train down to London, clutching a list of all the food I wanted to eat and people I wanted to see. 

I somehow found myself in the first class carriage [I think the cape I was wearing gave me an air of mystery and wealth] and let me tell you - I have been spoiled. After round after round of free gin & tonics, chocolates, cups of tea and cheese and crackers, I nearly cried when they told me how much it would be to upgrade for the way back up. I even wore my new fedora to try to play the mysterious and wealthy European socialite card again, but it turns out that it would be hundreds of pounds despite my obvious intrigue and hinted-upon riches. No wonder Richard Branson's doing well for himself.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Falling too far into fall

Confession. I may have gone SLIGHTLY overboard with this whole autumnal thing. I've got seasonal boozes infusing in my cupboard [except I haven't checked on them for about 2 weeks and now I'm scared to. I know they haven't exploded, that's enough, right?], I've made at least 3 batches of brownies, my local postman has been despairing at the numerous crafting things I've bought online, and I've carved six pumpkins in the last two weeks. Yes, six. Also, I got up early on Saturday to go out collecting leaves, like I'm in an episode of Art Attack or something.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Internally balanced, externally wonky

Could it get any better? Gin & tonic with lots of ice, blazing sunshine with a breeze, and ferociously competitive Rummikub games [I am the one, the only, the Master of Tiles]. I don't mean to rub it in your faces, but my trip to Portugal was amazing.

It was our first full-family getaway in over half a decade, and I think that the fact we could all legally drink [even my 16 year old brother - except after he realised he wasn't pulling off 18 the thrill wore off and he stuck to chocolate milk. No, really.] helped the family dynamic. No arguments, no tears, just lots of wine and gin and port, as my mother tried to convince everyone Yahtzee was a really good game [not buying it], and my dad whipped out his rusty Portuguese to navigate us around the Algarve.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Postcards from Paris

So a couple of months ago my sister and I popped along to Paris and I'm only just telling you about it. I know, I'm awful. But I've been busy, honestly. Not even pseudo-busy, but honest-to-gosh, getting-a-degree, saving-lives, evacuated-from-my-flat busy [more on this later].

With our holiday wardrobes planned and packed, and our itinerary carefully researched [read: searched #paris on instagram], we were off to our little apartment with a view. Balconies are a prerequisite for any Parisian adventure, after all.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Dublin Calling

Dublin! Lovely sunny Dublin. My home for the month of May treated me very well indeed, and by very well, I mean my average burrito consumption was 0.75 burritos a week. Me gusta.

And it wasn't just burritos, ohhhhhhhh no. If you've ever been to Dublin [or follow me on Instagram], then you know that it is a city pretty much obsessed with food and drink, which suits me just fine. Doughnuts, brownies, macarons [I am basically a sniffer-dog for Laduree], the BEST PIZZA OF MY LIFE [chorizo, goat's cheese, wild mushrooms....just...], delicious salads and incredible ice-cream. I am a walking mound of food.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Post-Forgetful Stress Disorder

Soooooo guess who got her laptop fixed all by herself? Tech feminism, that's hot. To explain: I haven't been able to Google/Netflix/stream Game of Thrones for DAYS now, and it's been killing me! I am scarily reliant on machines. Not looking forward to the Luddite revolution.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Paris Paris

BONJOUR MES AMIES. Why am I speaking French, you ask? Well, because I've just come back from a casual jaunt to Paris! Yes, a casual jaunt. Nothing better than a [very] long weekend away with your best friend to reinstate one's joie de vivre. It's been eclair o'clock every hour of every day, interspersed with various other pastries and even the occasional meal.

It's not for nothing that we told the couple next to us in the fondue restaurant - "We came to Paris to EAT." They couldn't even finish their fondue. Amateurs. We ate 5/6 of the cheese one and all of a meat one. I drunkenly yelled at the waiter when he tried to take it away from us. What can I say?  I heart cheese.