It's been a bit quiet on the blog lately and my excuse is the same as always lately (with the added stress of Christmas)...
I've been in Sweden since Wednesday and so far I've been resting, eating, reading and trying to ignore all the school work I'm supposed to do over Christmas break. And celebrating Christmas of course! (with even more eating)
With regards to presents it was a good haul this year.
And just now, over dinner, me and my aunt have decided to make our own Christmas beer next year!
Sunday, 25 December 2011
It's been a bit quiet on the blog lately and my excuse is the same as always lately (with the added stress of Christmas)...
Monday, 12 December 2011
That is what will keep me going today. I was up half the night writing that damn sociology essay that's due at noon today. It's not completely finished but an hour or so in the library should crack it.
This is my last assignment before Christmas (I'm ignoring the ones I have to do over the Christmas break) and tomorrow is our last day of college. I think it's very likely that as soon as I've emailed in the essay I'll be on Christmas break in my head!
Right now it's all about trying to get as much caffeine as possible into my body...
Friday, 9 December 2011
Not entirely sure what this blog post is actually about so I might just throw this in here as well: I finally managed to wirelessly connect my brand spanking printer to my laptop today! It only took me two days to get it sorted out.
(yes, it's ok to break into spontaneous applause at this point)
Once more unto the breach dear friends!
Tuesday, 29 November 2011
Got my literature essay back today, the one I thought was crap expecting nothing more than a pass on.
Turns out the teacher thought it was worth a distinction!
So now, no matter what happens, at least I'll have one distinction at the end of this course!
Monday, 28 November 2011
Sunday, 27 November 2011
My sis is busy making mountains of meatballs and soon we'll be stuffing our faces with balls (vegetarian for me), boiled potatoes, Swedish creamy beetroot salad and a lovely saffron cake for afters! She's even bought Julmust (a Swedish Christmas drink) for £2 a can!
Friday, 25 November 2011
I did not do very well on it... If you look up crumble under pressure in the dictionary you'll find a picture of me. So now I have to write an awesome essay to get a good grade for this unit. And I will not crack up doing this. I am starting tomorrow!
Today I have the morning off and I had decided to just take it easy and relax for once but I think that by now I've been conditioned into constantly feeling like I have something to do so the relaxing isn't going so well. So I'm going to go and buy a few Christmas presents and stuff I need for the party I'm going to tomorrow. And a school bag as the canvas bag I've been carrying my school stuff around in broke yesterday!
But first I'm going to go wash my hair!
Tuesday, 22 November 2011
Have taken the morning off to finish this bloody essay about the historical development of the English language. I have really struggled with it. I can feel myself slipping back into my old patterns of not being able to finish anything because I put too much pressure on myself to write the best fecking essays ever written... My problem with this essay is twofold: I find the subject really interesting and haven't had any problems grasping the ideas and facts; I have for some reason decided that I want a higher grade for this unit - pass is not enough.
I have given myself a little break now to try and coach myself not to freak out. My thoughts are going something like this: "buck up Sabina, you can do this! Don't worry so much, just write the bloody thing and be happy with whatever grade you get! It's not worth driving yourself to insanity over a merit or distinction!"
So back to Caxton, Johnson and co!
Thursday, 17 November 2011
Tuesday, 15 November 2011
Today I handed in my first essay. I've handed stuff in before but they have been either drafts or just part of units. This was my first unit assignment, the thing that will determine the grade I get for the Modern Drama unit in literature.
I had forgotten how nerve wracking these things are!
It's a good feeling to have gotten it done though!
Friday, 4 November 2011
from A dress a day via the awesome Whinar
Friday, 28 October 2011
It's 5.20 am and I'm in a cab on my way to the airport. I'm going to Sweden for the weekend because tonight is the release party for Tender Hooligans' debut album. And it just so happens that the lead singer of, and musical genius behind, Tender Hooligans is my brother.
So I get up at 4.15, drink a cup of tea, try to resist the urge to throw up and travel to my hometown to support him. And to tear it up with the rest of the hooligan crew!
Rock on, I say. Rock on!
Thursday, 27 October 2011
Yesterday I was watching Prime Minister's Questions and a female MP asked David Cameron about the fact that so many women voters are unhappy with the government. Cameron's reply? Something about the financial climate affecting household finances. Supposedly this is why women don't like the coalition government. Because that's all we do and all we care about: keeping house and home.
Apparently it is of utmost importance that we are able to tell if it's women in the boxing ring, or men. And the way to accomplish that is for female boxers to wear a skirt. A skirt! While boxing!
Sometimes I despair.
Sunday, 23 October 2011
Living in a house where a teenage girl also dwells can mean a lot of shouting.
Luckily I'm not involved. (Only if I'm working, but even that is rare. She seems to reserve it all for her mum.) I'm cocooned in my duvet, in my bed, in my room, with my book. And it can actually be quite entertaining! (Yes I am heartless.) Listening to mother and teenage daughter having a shouting match across the floors of the house. And I can sympathise with both of them.
I don't remember shouting that much at my mum when I was young. Did I? And I'm pretty sure I didn't call her horrible names. If I did, forgive me mum.
In fairness, all I can really remember of my teenage years is deep, dark, seemingly never ending depression, self-loathing and self-harming. So maybe it wasn't your average, garden variety youth.
Tomorrow I'm going to write the first draft of my personal statement which is due soon. For my university application. Well, it's not due for my application. Still have a month or so for that. It's due for school.
Anyway, I've put it on here now. That means I have to do it. Or live with the shame.
Not really, but I do need a kick up the bum and I'm hoping putting it in writing will help.
Now it's like I have a contract with the internet!
Sunday, 25 September 2011
I managed to sort out the page numbers and decided to ignore the title page thing.
It is only a draft after all so I'm counting on my teacher telling me what needs to be sorted out...
Either way, my first written school assignment in more than ten years will be handed in tomorrow!
Fingers crossed (or if you're Swedish: hold your thumbs)!
I'm not entirely sure what "title page with full title of assignment" means either...
I give up!
I don't want to do this bloody course any more!
I made myself a cup of tea and decided to get started on my homework. I read Her Big Chance from Alan Bennett's Talking Heads and because I like his monologues so much I just carried on and read half the book.
I finally told myself that there are no prizes for reading ahead and made a start on something that actually has to be in tomorrow: a flipping person specification and an action plan for applying to uni.
It was around this time that my old friend procrastination popped round and decided to spend the day...
So in the last few hours I've spent maybe half an hour working on my assignment and the rest reading blogs, watching TV, painting my toenails and really anything that isn't schoolwork.
Now, before anyone starts waggling a finger and saying "Now, now Sabina. You really must do your homework..." I'd just like to point out that the thing is more or less finished. It's really just fine tuning at this point.
And it will get done tonight!
Along with my linguistics homework.
Saturday, 24 September 2011
After another sleepless night I am now lounging in bed watching breakfast on BBC and thinking that I should really have a shower and start getting ready.
You see I'm going to an open day at Queen Mary University today.
I'm slightly nervous but really excited, I've never actually been on a university campus before.
My dear sister is coming along as well so it should be a fun day out!
Thursday, 22 September 2011
Tell you all about my amazing new life as a student and all these new experiences and impressions.
And, you know, it is great.
It's also exhausting since I'm still working the same hours. Or rather, have the same workload but less hours to do it in!
I also need to research universities and find 5 courses/unis to apply to before the end of November.
And do my schoolwork.
And try to resist the urge to curl up in the foetal position and cry whenever I try to do these things.
I also found out the other day that, apparently, I don't know how to use punctuation! Specifically full stops and commas.
So rather a lot to take in...
On the upside, I seem to get a discount whenever I buy anything!
And my sister is coming with me to my first university open day on Saturday!
Wednesday, 7 September 2011
Monday, 5 September 2011
Since I am shortly going to be a student again (and also because I'm a pedant when it comes to spelling and stuff) I bought a dictionary today. While I was waiting to pay I flicked through it and looked at a random page and this is what I saw: Fart - let out wind from the anus.
So it seems that even when I try to be all grown up and responsible I just can't.
I mean, you can't for a minute imagine that I didn't have a little chuckle right there in the queue at WHSmith right?
Sunday, 4 September 2011
Friday, 2 September 2011
Since I got back from my holiday I've been looking after a neighbour's allotment, which basically means that every few days I walk there, pick whatever I want, do a bit of watering and maybe tie up a tomato plant or two. Then I carry my haul home and make it into lovely jams and chutneys. For this she paid me and also gave me two bracelets (she makes and sells jewellery). So when she got back the other day I went over there with some jars of stuff, I kinda figured we'd share it all but wasn't sure what she wanted so just gave her a selection.
Today when I got home from work she had popped a present through the letter box. Two brilliant jam and preserve books and an awesome, professional style thermometer. To say thanks for the jam.
And now I want to give her more jam to say thanks for the stuff...
This could go on forever!
Thursday, 1 September 2011
And in her comeback post you can read about one of the things I've been freaked out about... She's preggers! Which, of course, is awesome. She's going to be the best, coolest, funnest mum ever, her kid is going to be cool, gorgeous, clever and brilliant an I am, obviously, going to be the best aunt ever!
The reason I've been slightly freaked out about it is that she's just a baby herself. Yes, shes 27 which isn't actually too young to have kids, but she's my baby sister. Also, she just seems to have grown up all of a sudden: baby, new job and career prospects, setting up a home with her boyfriend and all the while I'm still floating around trying to decide how much longer I'm going to do this Peter Pan thing.
But I am really happy! For her, of course, but also for myself.... I'm going to be an aunt! I can't wait to meet the amazing creature I saw on the screen at her 12 week scan!
Tuesday, 23 August 2011
I finally seem to have found a way to stop my aerial signal constantly dropping out: balancing it on top of my laptop.
It's not ideal but it's working for the moment...
I'm going to have to find something else to precariously balance it on tomorrow, since I kinda need to use my laptop, but right now I'm too tired in an insomnia way and just need to half watch tv/half try to sleep.
Saturday, 20 August 2011
OK, recipe might be a bit of a stretch, it's actually more of a technique.
Anyways, here we go:
Best Macaroni Cheese ever:
Cheese (Mature cheddar or similar nice, strong flavoured cheese. I like Cathedral City)
Macaroni (or any other pasta you have to hand, I used fusilli)
Mustard powder (or mustard)
Salt and Pepper to season
Find a good mac and cheese recipe (I usually use Nigella Lawson or that Student Cookbook by that young guy Sam something.)
Halve the recipe because it's just you and you don't need four portions.
Prepare all your ingredients, cook pasta, make roux, grate cheese etc.
Put cheese into your white sauce, realising when you've put most of it in that you forgot to halve the quantity of cheese.
Think oh well, I've grated all this cheese so might as well use it.
Finish preparing the cheese sauce.
Follow the rest of the steps in your chosen recipe.
Enjoy the cheesiest mac and cheese in the history of the world.
Friday, 19 August 2011
And now I actually want to blog. Well kinda.
See here's the thing: I'm freaking out. But the things I'm freaking out about are not things I can, want or am allowed to blog about. And they are I really want to blog about.
Hence I'm not blogging.
But everything will become clear eventually.
Just thought I'd get that out there.
p.s. One of the things that I'm freaked out about is also something I'm really happy about!
Tuesday, 2 August 2011
Friday, 8 July 2011
Thursday, 7 July 2011
I have to leave home at about seven in the morning and when I get there I'll have to hang around the airport for a couple of hours to wait for my friend who's flying in from Sweden.
I'm really excited!
Not about the waiting part obviously, but what comes after it.
And somehow I've managed to be quite organised for once.
For me at least, my boss would be crying blood if she was "only" as organised as me.
So let's put it this way: my bag has actually been packed several hours.
I won't be up 'til three in the morning throwing the last few things in, only to realise once I get there that I've forgotten loads of stuff.
I think I deserve a pat on the back for that.
My room is still a mess though.
I'll never be a tidy packer. Or a tidy anything for that matter.
Off to bed now, to dream of Barcelona.
See ya on the flip side!
Wednesday, 6 July 2011
*ding ding dong* the next train to London Waterloo will now be arriving at platform one.
*ding ding dong* platform alteration, the next train to Waterloo will now be arriving at platform two
*ding ding dong* ignore that, it's platform one again
And so on and so forth!
This time next year, when millions of Olympics spectators will flood our public transport system, I predict we'll be spending half the day doing these kinds of things...
Tuesday, 5 July 2011
I was told by a personal trainer last week that I needed to lose weight (not in so many words), even though I am by no means overweight and I don't actually want to lose any. He also told me to not eat a lot of fruit and veg and basically live only on protein.
Today the lady threading my eyebrows said I should really do my whole forehead as it would "look nicer and cleaner".
What is up with the world?
Monday, 4 July 2011
Friday, 1 July 2011
Wednesday, 29 June 2011
I have actually tried to post from my phone a couple of times but, as I hadn't updated the app, it wasn't working and when I went to update it I realised they had changed the way the ads work so uninstalled.
Now I have to find a new, good blogger app.
Add that to the list.
I do have a couple of baking related posts in the pipeline and now that I'm all booked and sorted for my hols I might actually get in the right head space to publish them!
First thing on my to do list, however, is sleep.
Tuesday, 21 June 2011
Wednesday, 8 June 2011
Ha! I say. Ha!
(Ok they haven't actually messed with me yet, but they're trying their hardest.)
I feel it's best to nip it in the bud. They clearly don't know who they're dealing with and so need to be educated.
Sunday, 5 June 2011
Anyway, a few weeks (months? how old am I?!) I thought: Hey wouldn't it be great to have one of those for this summer? As a sort of travel journal for Barcelona and Sweden but also to just generally record (my last) summer (as a 20-something!). Great, I thought, I'll get one (or two, or three)!
But, oh no! Why would something be that easy?!
Turns out they're not arriving on our little isle until end of July!
Which is after I've been away and half the summer is gone...
So, I've more or less decided to get at least one and some of the bits from the states. I know it will be more expensive but that's the price you pay for being impatient!
One thing that annoys me about this whole situation is that I have a friend (old flat-mate) who's living and studying in the states. She's gone home to Mauritius for a bit and is stopping in London on her way back in a couple of weeks. If I had realised earlier, I'm sure she wouldn't have minded bringing one of these babies for me...
That would have required me to do something earlier than last minute, however, and we all know I don't do that!
When I grow up, I want to be organised!
It seems to be sold out everywhere... If there is a god, he/she certainly seems to not like me very much.
And the title of this post is actually not true, there are things to report. Just not very interesting ones...
My reason for being a ad blogger is this: I have been reading. And baking and tending my garden (well three strawberry plants and one chili plant). But mostly reading.
A while ago (a month, two months? It's all a bit of a blur...) Sky started showing Game of Thrones. I immediately knew it was for me: fantasy, knights, kings, dragons and evil plots! I don't however have sky on my TV and I could watch it on the beast upstairs but, apart from the fact that it freaks me out, I don't really know how to work it. Besides, I'm rubbish at watching TV these days, I never remember when anything is on and end up missing it every week. So I did it the old fashioned way and bought the book the series is based on.
And like that I was hooked! So for the last few weeks all I have done is read. Last night I started the fourth book and soon I will have finished them all.
So, if anyone out there is a massive nerd like me and haven't read these books I highly recommend them!
The whole series is called A Song Of Ice And Fire and you really need to get them all in one go as it's torture if you finish one and haven't got the next one to hand!
I have sat up until the wee hours most nights just reading. Whenever I have a minute (waiting for the kettle to boil, waiting for the iron to heat up) I read. They are addictive!
In fact, I'm going to read a bit more now before I go to the shop to get the stuff I need for fajitas with sis tonight!
Wednesday, 25 May 2011
I managed 2 1/2 days then I had to break it. So I'm counting that as a success. Hmm...
Basically I woke up around four on the Monday morning feeling like I was going to die. I was drenched in sweat and as nauseous as it's possible to be without actually throwing up. After drinking some water and taking deep breaths I managed to get back to sleep only to wake up around seven freezing cold. I tried to drink some herbal tea and breakfast juice but every time I took a sip it tried to come right back up again.
I could hardly stand up and spent most of the day in bed shaking uncontrollably and trying not to vomit. I was roasting hot then ten minutes freezing cold. I pretty much felt like I had been struck down by some killer bug. Now I don't know if this was the detox kicking in or just the side effects of not eating but it felt like my body was saying "enough with the flipping juice, I want food!".
Let me tell you, I'm no wuss. If it wasn't for the fact that I had to go to work in the afternoon and I could barely get out of bed, I would have carried on. I don't like to leave things unfinished. (I do all the time, but I don't like it!) By three in the afternoon, having been unable to drink any juice or tea, my blood sugar levels were in the red and I needed something to get me trough the few hours I had to work. So I caved and ate a little bit of grated carrot and some yoghurt with strawberries.
After work I tried again with the juice, hoping it would work better. I made a juice that was really yummy (I'd had it before) with lots of good stuff. And I couldn't drink a drop of it. As soon as I took a sip I actually gagged. So I broke my fast and then spent the next two days doing it the way I'd planned.
So, not quite a success but not too bad. I'm not going to beat myself up about it.
The good news is that since doing it I've felt great! I've been eating much healthier and I seem to have lost my sweet tooth. Before I'd spend my evenings snacking on sweets, chocolate and crisps but I seem to have gotten out of that habit now. I did have some cake and ice cream at the weekend and was worried that might get me back into it but it really hasn't! I don't even think about it. I no longer have a biscuit or three with every cup of tea and since I only had unsweetened tea during the fast I'm now down from 4 teaspoons of sugar in my regular tea, to two! I'm trying to gradually cut that down too, to maybe one or even 1/2.
I don't even drink that much tea anymore, at least a couple of cups every day have been substituted for herbal stuff.
I feel much lighter and more energetic and generally just good. So, all in all, I'm glad I did it!
This has been a long and rambling post I know, but I also haven't posted in a while so I'm thinking that evens things out!
Wednesday, 18 May 2011
Right now, however, I'm too happy.
Me and my favourite Banana (Hanna) have just booked our Barcelona tickets for this summer, my brothers band are blazing a trail through the northern Swedish rock scene and I have a great book!
I'll leave you with that while I go watch Game of Thrones.
Sunday, 15 May 2011
I almost forgot to watch the repeat of Doctor Who tonight (missed it last night to go to my sis' and watch Sweden come third in the Eurovision!) but luckily I remembered at the last minute!
Tonight would have sucked otherwise!
Saturday, 14 May 2011
Woke up early this morning, the bloody birds wouldn't shut up and the sun had found a crack in the curtain and was shining in my face, but, as everyone else was still sleeping, I didn't want to fire up the noisy juicer.
Thankfully I managed to get back to sleep for an hour or so.
For breakfast I had a cup of wild fennel tea and juice made with 1 cup of mixed berries (strawberries and blueberries) and 1/2 cup of melon.
I went to the bank and then to the shop to stock up on more fruit and veg for juicing.
Being out and about was difficult, let me tell you! I had to walk past a Greggs, a Starbucks and a Pret A Porter and the smells of the pasties, pastries and coffee were so hard to resist! And once in Sainsbury's I had to walk very quickly past the chocolate and other snacks.
When I got back home (still on the wagon!) I made myself some "lunch" juice of 2 apples, 1/2 a cucumber, 1 stick of celery, a handful of spinach and a handful of mixed greens (kale, watercress and parsley) and 2 tsp spirulina powder. I can't say this juice is yummy but it's alright.
I also made some apple and carrot juice for a "snack" later.
I have to say, I'm regretting not buying a whole fruit juicer. Chopping everything up is quite time consuming and a bit of a hassle. The thing that bugs me the most is that for £10 more I could have bought one but I decided to pinch my pennies.
Oh well, you live and learn!
Friday, 13 May 2011
These last two days have actually been fine.
Yesterday I had fruit salad, with pineapple, galia melon, orange and grapes for breakfast. Yummy in my tummy! For lunch I had a big plate full of raw vegetables: thin cut cabbage, grated carrot, yellow pepper, sugar snap peas and half an avocado. I sprinkled loads of spring onions over for a bit of extra flavour and drizzled a tsp of dressing made with olive oil, lemon, garlic and herbs de Provence over it.
In the afternoon I snacked on strawberries, yum!
Dinner was the most difficult meal as I was eating with G who was tucking into a delicious looking pizza. So munching a salad of little gem lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes and avocado was not so much fun. I persevered however and once I'd gotten into it I was fine. Throughout the day I kept having cups of wild fennel tea, which I'm actually becoming quite partial to!
Today's breakfast was pineapple, lunch was the same as yesterday and dinner was half an avocado, sugar snap peas and carrot sticks. I have to say, eating today has been a bit of a struggle. Not because I've craved other things, I just haven't been that hungry. I had to force myself to eat lunch and only ate about half of what I had brought with me. I didn't feel like dinner until around 7.30 with is very late for me, I'm usually starving by six!
I ate some grapes in the afternoon and an apple after dinner. And of course drank a few gallons of fennel tea.
I'm quite pleased I've found a herbal tea I actually like! I usually detest herbal teas and can only drink them with loads of sugar or honey.
I am feeling a bit peckish now, so I might go and munch a couple of strawberries before bed, but all in it's been ok. I haven't really had any cravings and I actually feel great.
Both yesterday and today I've felt really energised and sort of light! I doubt that juice fasting will become a regular part of my life, although hopefully I won't just do it this once, but just eating raw fruit and veg for a couple of days is definitely something I'm going to try to do again. Maybe once a month or so. We'll see.
Tomorrow the juicing begins.
I'm nervous and excited in equal measures!
And then blogger broke. And apparently wiped everything posted yesterday.
Which I only just realised while reading other peoples' blogs.
So there I was, feeling bad all last night that I couldn't post an update. I had taken pictures of all my meals and everything! Which is actually moot as I can't find the cable thingy to upload them. (I swear, this room is like the Bermuda triangle. Things are constantly disappearing! Especially when I've just tidied up...)
When I realised the post about the fast had disappeared it seemed silly to do an update without the back story and I was just sitting here wondering if I could be bothered re-writing the whole thing when I the light bulb lit up: I posted from my phone! Could it be that the post was still there somewhere? Joy of joy, it was!
So I re-posted it.
Later on, after I've had a chat with my friend and something to eat, I will indeed post an update. Most likely without pictures though, unless the lead finds itself.
Fingers crossed Blogger doesn't pack up again!
We were supposed to do it last week but circumstances meant we had to postpone it. So we're starting today!
The first two days we will eat just fruit and vegetables, preferably fresh, to prepare for the three days spent drinking only freshly prepared juices, herbal teas and a bit of vegetable stock. After that comes two days of breaking the fast in much the same way as we started.
So even though the fast is only three days the whole thing takes seven or so days.
So, today is the first day. I've just had a lovely fruit salad for breakfast and I've stocked up on fruit and veg that will be chopped, grated, juiced, blended and prepared into salads, dishes, smoothies and juices.
And joy of joy, there are british strawberries in the shops so quite a few of those will be eaten!
I am aiming to post at least once a day as a sort of diary of this challenge. I'll post what's on the menu, how it's going and maybe more in depth about fasts and stuff.
The journey starts now, so stay tuned!
Sunday, 8 May 2011
Sunday, 1 May 2011
(All these pictures were found on google.)
Saturday, 30 April 2011
She's going to make it form an old pair of my mum's trousers. They are black and blue striped. I think the stripes are quite wide and how I remember the fabric, I think it will look great. The thing is I don't really remember exactly what it looks like.
You see the fabric (and the friend) is in Sweden and I'm in London. So we'll obviously have to wait 'til July to finish the skirt (fitting etc) but I'm thinking she could start the process with my measurements etc.
The other skirt I want is some kind of swing skirt. This will (I think but then I don't sew) be easier as it won't be fitted and stuff. I'm still trawling the interwebs trying to find a nice style. The waist is again a problem, as is the length and I'm also not sure how long I want it.
Oh, it's so hard being me.
In other news, I'm absolutely skint at the mo'. Which is the reason I haven't gotten inked yet. Actually I'm not, I have money but it's not for spending. It's for investing in my future!
So here's what we've learnt today:
- I can't decide on anything.
- I'm saving my money
- I like using brackets in blog posts (and often long ones)
Wednesday, 20 April 2011
We'll start with the base which is just a plain sponge. It's made with different eggs to flour ratio, to make it high and light, and potato flour* to stabilise all the eggs.
300 ml sugar
150 ml plain flour
150 ml potato flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Here's how you do it:
Preheat oven to 175 degrees C. Line, grease and flour a 25cm spring form tin. Make a collar for the tin and grease and flour this as well. The cake will rise quite a bit and the collar will stop it spilling over the edge (which would be a terrible waste of good cake batter and also a pain to clean).
Using an electric whisk, beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract until pale and very fluffy. Its important to beat for a long time as you want as much air as possible in the mixture.
Sieve the flour, potato flour and baking powder and carefully fold in to the egg mixture.
Bake on the bottom oven shelf for 40-50 minutes, checking with a skewer towards the end of the cooking time. You might like to cover the top with a sheet of greaseproof paper for the last 5 minutes or so to stop it getting to crispy.
Leave to cool in the tin, covered with a clean towel.
If possible, make the cake a few days in advance and freeze it. Take it out, in the morning, the day you want to serve it and divide it before it's completely defrosted as that makes it easier to cut.
I divided mine into three layers but you should be able to get four 9maybe more if you're handy with a knife).
Traditional Swedish birthday/celebration usually have a layer with vanilla custard and are covered with whipped cream and fresh fruit and/or berries. I decided to go for a raspberry theme so for the non-custard layer I made a raspberry mousse.
For the mousse you need:
200 g raspberries (fresh or frozen)
100 ml icing sugar
100 g cream cheese
4 leaves of gelatin
200 ml whipping cream
Bring the raspberries to a boil (if using fresh, add a splash of water) and heat for a couple of minutes.
Whip the cream.
Pass the strawberries through a sieve to make a puree.
Place the gelatin leaves in cold water to soak for a few minutes.
Mix about half of the raspberry puree with the cream cheese along with the icing sugar.
Squeeze the water from the gelatin leaves and dissolve in the other half of the raspberry puree.
(You may need to reheat it quickly and if it's quite thick, adding a splash of boiling water will help to dissolve the gelatin.)
Leave to cool for a few minutes then stir into the cream cheese mixture.
Finally, fold in the whipped cream.
Let the mousse set in the fridge for a while before using it to fill you cake.
For my cake I used the mousse for the bottom layer and custard for the second layer. I then covered the cake (just a thin layer on the sides) with whipped cream and decorated it with piped whipped cream, fresh raspberries and heart-shaped sugar sprinkles. The writing says Happy Birthday (actually congratulations because that's what we say in Sweden) in case you were wondering! It was done by my sister using some writing gel I bought because I couldn't be arsed to make anything...
So there, go forth and bake! And remember to beat those eggs...
This is where I found the original recipes: cake and mousse. They are in Swedish and all I've done is translate them and possibly re-write them slightly to make more sense in English
* Whilst browsing the amazing Internet I have found several forums/websites/blogs/people who say there is a difference between potato flour and potato starch. Same as there is apparently a difference between corn flour and corn starch. I call it potato flour because that's what it's called in Sweden and that's the only kind I've ever come across. It's white, "dry" and makes a squeaky, crunching sound like walking on fresh snow. That's the kind you want. In England you can buy it in health food shops (Holland & Barret and suchlike) and they also call it potato flour. I guess if there is a choice between -flour and -starch, buy starch. My sister's bf made it with corn flour/starch (same thing again!) I hear, and that worked fine as far as I know. I can't tell you to do that since I've never tried it and don't feel comfortable recommending ti.
Tuesday, 19 April 2011
Also making fruit infused vodka/liqueur.
I generally go mad like this when I have the house to myself for a few day. Unlimited kitchen use, yay!
I've invited my sister round tomorrow because I need someone to help me eat it all. And also 'cause I'd like to see her of course!
She'll get to see The Monster TV in the top room (aka The Media Room) and we might even watch a movie!
No full frontal though. As I found out when watching Jackass 3, a penis in HD on a 5000 inch telly is quite an unsettling experience... What has been seen can never be unseen!
Time for a late evening snack of cheese on home baked bread now methinks!
Friday, 15 April 2011
When I actually post something new on my blog, a lot more people read it.
It's true! The stats tell me so.
I know, wow huh?!
Anyway, I have a couple of cake/baking/recipe posts in the pipeline. I'm not turning this blog into a cake blog, it just so happens I've baked a few things lately and I'd like to share them with you. Sharing is caring, you know!
It's just that the recipes are Swedish and it takes some time translating them and writing them out and all that. So I've taken a break from doing that and am currently crocheting granny squares. Again. Maybe by the time I'm all grown up I'll have enough for an afghan or something!
Oh, I've also been creating. Getting busy with the pretty papers and the paints and the inks. But I can't show you that quite yet.
Wednesday, 13 April 2011
The problem now is that there are so many gadgets in this house. If I tell him he's been on the xbox long enough he simply moves to the computer. And when I tell him to get off the computer because he's not listening to me and being rude he just goes and gets the ipad. I tell him he's not allowed it and he starts playing on his mum's itouch. And so it goes.
I keep finding him in various rooms on different gadgets that I have to take off him. I can never remember all of them (Nintendo ds, psp, xbox, computer, ipad, etc, etc) and if I miss one out when telling him he's not allowed he will see it as a loophole which means he can go on it. He's not stupid this boy...
What I need is some kind of comprehensive list so I can just rattle them off and be done with it.
Or this family needs to be stricter with how much time you're allowed to spend in front of a screen in a day.
I don't know.
Tuesday, 12 April 2011
Let the jelly set in the fridge for at least four hours but
|This picture was taken before they went in the fridge, any foam on the top should disappear as they set.|
Friday, 8 April 2011
Being a nanny really rocks in spring/summer, I can just take the kids outside and give them a ball and they'll happily run around while I chill in the sunshine with a cuppa.
Of course this is also when my hay-fever nightmare begins, but I'm ignoring that for the time being.
There is something special about the first really warm days of the year.
I'm overwhelmed by a constant need to be outside.
Wednesday, 6 April 2011
This is about a third of everything I've ironed today. Normally I just do the shirts and sheets but my employer has hurt her back so this week I'm doing her share as well.
Which is fine by me, she's paying me extra for it. And the kids have been busy elsewhere so I've had a couple of uninterrupted hours to get through it.
Now I'm going to go out and enjoy this glorious sunshine. Sit with a book while the kids have a runaround.
My job is the best sometimes!
*edited 12/4 to change title to what it was meant to be rather than what my HTC thought it should be.
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Thursday, 17 March 2011
Sunday, 13 March 2011
Anyway, that's not what I was going to write about.
I'm worried about my ear. Or rather my piercing. Maybe worried is too strong a word, concerned might be better. Either way, it's doing something weird. Some odd looking bumps have developed. I'm pretty sure it's scarring but what do I know. So I'm going to go see my piercer tomorrow. Because I really don't want another infection, I can't handle that again. Not that scarring is much better. I can live with how it looks now but if it gets worse I might have to take it out.
I really want this piercing but not if it means having a permanently disfigured ear. Because as much as I love it now, I'm pretty sure I won't want a bar through the top of my ear for the rest of my life.
So I'm going to finish the Grey's episode I'm watching now then go to bed.
'Cause I also have a million other things to do tomorrow. Things that I've decided to do, not things I actually have to do. I have nothing I have to do on weekends. I don't exactly have people knocking down my door!
Ok, this has turned into a self-pitying emo post. I'm tired. I might delete this tomorrow. Or edit it. Who knows.
I also have really bad heart burn. Which is something I haven't had in a while. So that's interesting.
Saturday, 12 March 2011
And yes, it was probably bad. Glamorising smoking and blah blah. I mostly just didn't understand the point of it or the reason for it...
Then today I read this* and again I thought: Huh, what? I mean this woman is really angry. At Kate Moss. Not Louis Vuitton, not Marc Jacobs, not whoever was in charge of the fashion show (I know nothing of the fashion industry but I'm guessing that someone designs/directs these things?) but Kate Moss.
I might be very wrong here but I kinda figured this was a planned thing. Something that was a part of the show, like the clothes, the hair, the make-up. Not Kate Moss deciding she fancied a fag as she went on the catwalk and she just happened to have a pack of ciggies and a lighter in the pocket of her hotpants. I feel like I'm missing something here. It feels like blaming an actor for smoking in a movie. When you really should blame the director/writer for making the character smoke. It feels like a witch hunt and The Daily Mail has cast Kate Moss as the witch. This lady does not pull her punches...
I'm no angel, I'm not a "good girl" who's never broken any rules or done bad things. Smoking, underage drinking, generally behaving badly - I've done it. I have never done it because an actor/model/singer I liked and admired did it. I have never seen a movie where all the cool characters smoke and felt the need to emulate them. Maybe I'm an exception, but I really don't think so. I don't think those are the reasons 21% of Brits smoke. And when she writes: "...The health study found one boy started smoking cigarettes at the age of three — because his family thought it was funny." I think even she knows we can blame celebs for that.
But, then again, I could be wrong.
What do I know?
I don't know if I'm making any sense.
And this is not just because I love Kate Moss, which I do. This is not just because I think Kate Moss is one of the most beautiful women in the world and I would marry her if she asked me.
I'm genuinely confused. I don't understand. And I hate not understanding!
*Yes, this is The Daily Mail and we all know they like a rant (although usually it's about immigrants, hoodies and/or the lack of "values" in today's society) so I shouldn't really take it too seriously.
Friday, 11 March 2011
And I've been thinking. Just lately there seems to be so much death and destruction. More than usual I mean. More than the stuff that goes on every day of every year but never gets reported for that exact reason: it's not news.
I mean, we're only in the first quarter of this year and we've had earthquakes and floods and half of North Africa and the Arab world seems to have gone into meltdown. At least what's going on there is kind of positive. Not the people dying and being hurt. That's obviously never good. But you know, they're fighting. They're struggling to achieve something they've not had for a long time, if ever. There is hope. Or maybe hope that there can be hope.
But all the death. And suffering. There just seems to be so much of it these days. You almost have to brace yourself before you turn on the TV or open a newspaper.
I really don't know what I'm saying here. It's sad. I think that's it.
Tuesday, 8 March 2011
|I met up with some lovely ladies and we made our way to Hyde Park where the march was leaving from. As I was on my own, the women form LFN took me under their wing (and roped me into help carry the banner!).|
|We admired each others' signs. This one in particular!|
|Then we set off.|
|We marched through the streets of central London, chanting and singing.|
|At one point even dancing!|
|The David & Nick sign was one of my favourites!|
|And the we arrived at Trafalgar Square.|
|Where we listened to many strong women give inspirational speeches.|
Sunday, 6 March 2011
So I'm just going to have to do it tomorrow...
And btw, everything seems to take forever and be kinda shitty computer/internet wise tonight.
I don't know if it's my laptop or our crappy internet connection but one thig it definitely is: very annoying.
Also, my new digi box isn't working. Or rather, the box is working but I can't get a signal strong enough to get more than about 5 channels (and a bunch of radio stations). And they're not even the good ones. The channels, haven't checked the radio stations. Don't really listen to the radio. But I digress. In my room there is no wall thing to plug an aerial cable into (for the outdoor aerial) so I have to use an indoor one, you know the bunny ears on the telly, and this is apparently not good enough. So I'm going to get a new one. Tomorrow. Tomorrow is the day when I'm doing things. It's lucky I have the day off.
So, conclusion: boo for technology.
Saturday, 5 March 2011
So it's official, I'm cool!
If only 13 year old girls had thought I was cool 15 years ago...
Monday, 28 February 2011
I want one of these. With all the extra bits and stuff that go with it. Obviously.
Actually I want several. Maybe one of each theme (or whatever they're calling them).
Only problem is it seems they're not out 'til April which is ages away. And I think that might just be in the US.
More info here if anyone else is tickled.
Now, I wouldn't mind spending a fair bit on a good camera if I thought I'd get a lot of use out of it but like I said: they freak me out. I have a feeling I'd get one, try to use it a few times, realise I don't know how to work it/actually take good pictures and just put it in a drawer somewhere.
So I got a bridge camera which is kind of in between a compact and an SLR. Its not as bulky as an SLR and it has a fixed lens so none of the faffing with lenses not to mention they cost a fair bit of money as well. It does a lot more than a compact though and has a big fancy lens and a bunch of settings I don't understand.
And here's my thing: I've researched it, thought about it and talked to people who know and I finally decided to buy it. It was no impulse thing this. I get home, take it out of the box and look at it. Then I put it back in. For hours I kept doing this. I didn't want to put the batteries and the card in and start playing with it in case I changed my mind and wanted to take it back. This is a problem I have, I do this all the time. It;s not that I regret my purchase but that I'm scared I will. Anyway, I texted my sister, she gave me a kick up the butt and I had a play. So far I have to say I love it! I still want to do a course though. I don't understand half of the settings and dials but mostly I don't really know how to take good pictures. You know, composition, light etc.
So now I'm googling courses. I think it'll be fun!
So this was really just my long winded roundabout way of saying: Yay, I have a new camera!
Sunday, 27 February 2011
I don't even want to watch the actual awards (too much blah blah blah from winners and bloody James Franco who just ruins his own hotness every time he opens his mouth by being the most pretentious arse there ever was) I just want to see the red carpet and the interviews and stuff. You'd think some terrestrial channel would be allowed to show at least that! I really don't think that's too much to ask...
The search continues!
Saturday, 26 February 2011
I don't know how long they've done this but I only just discovered it. For a caffeine-phobe like me it's great, I no longer have to find the least disgusting herbal crap if I want to buy a tea in the afternoon.
All hail Costa!
Thursday, 24 February 2011
Kinda begs the question: does he really believe this or does he just think we will believe it? And which is worse? I Almost feel sorry for him. I mean he's either desperate or mentally ill or the scariest option: both.
I want to help, to be out on the streets with these people, but I can't. So I absorb all the information I can instead.
And then there's the earthquake in New Zealand...
A lot of people seem to have died lately, in horrible ways.
Anyway, I don't really have much to say about any of this. There are better places to find information, more well informed sources of opinion.
I will just give you a link to this.
Saturday, 19 February 2011
I watched The Social Network earlier and it made me kind of sad.
And even earlier than that I looked at cameras. I think I've decided, but I need to do some research and find the best price so I can take it to John Lewis and get them to price match it (they do that you know). The reason I want to get it there is simply that I have £40 worth of vouchers so it'll be even cheaper!
So yeah, that's pretty much how I've spent my Saturday. Oh yeah, I had a nap at one point too.
My life is so riveting! I know you're all living vicariously through me!
(funny thing: I just spellchecked this post and it didn't come up with any mistakes so I deliberately changed a word just to make sure it's working!)
They can really get away with anything and know that the US will always have their back.
My favourite bit is
While stating that it opposed new settlements, the Obama administration argued that taking the issue to the UN would only complicate efforts to resume stalled negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians on a two-state peace deal.Yes, of course, that's what will complicate it. Not things like this
Sometimes I just want to ignore things like this, it just makes me so sad and angry. I don't know how to live in a world like the one we are all living in now.
Something must have gone seriously wrong at some point in humanity's past for us to have become these monsters.
So I despair.
And then I pick myself up, more determined than ever to do something. Anything.
My boss chuckled when, during a conversation about what I want to do with my life, I said: I want to change the world. But I do. I have to at least try, otherwise what's the point? I don't know how to live in a world like this.
Monday, 14 February 2011
Saturday, 12 February 2011
And, in any case it wasn't some god who did this, it was the people. I love it!
I think we all need to stop talking about what this means for "us in the west" and maybe think about what this means for us as human beings. Oil prices? This is democracy. Actually happening right before our eyes. And that can only be a good thing.
A protester, Karim Medhat Ennarah, is quoted in the guardian saying: "For 18 days we have withstood teargas, rubber bullets, live ammunition, Molotov cocktails, thugs on horseback, the scepticism and fear of our loved ones, and the worst sort of ambivalence from an international community that claims to care about democracy. But we held our ground. We did it"
Yes you did. And I bow before you.
I hope it works out for you and you get a leader who is good for you. For your country. You deserve it.
I also thank you for restoring some of my faith in humankind. And making me think that maybe there is some hope after all. For all of us.
Wednesday, 9 February 2011
The antibiotics should kick in today so I'm giving it another day. My boss (who used to be a nurse) is keeping an eye on it as well.
It doesn't hurt (any more than before it got infected anyway) and in any case that's the least of my worries, I just don't want to have to take the piercing out. I don't know how it would work with getting it re-pierced (if it's recommended, how long I'd have to wait etc) and all the pain and sleepless nights would all be for nothing. Besides, now that I know how much it hurts I don't know if I'd have the nerve to do it again...
Ok, whining over. As you were.
Friday, 4 February 2011
What is it with me these days? I seem to just randomly develop odd ailments every now and then.
On the positive side, my pityriasis rosea seems to be clearing up! Although I don't think one has anything to do with the other.
It can make you a bit obsessed with turning lights off though!
What I do know is this:
My new scaffold piercing really hurts.
I have a cold.
I'm late for work (well I will be if I don't leave in the next 3 minutes).
I will write something more interesting soon.
(Maybe even tonight, who knows!)
Wednesday, 19 January 2011
Saturday, 15 January 2011
Because since I got back to London after my Christmas break that's how I've felt about what's going on as illustrated by the picture. Most shops are selling chocolate eggs and other Easter treats. According to my boss some started on boxing day. That is the 26th of December! Selling crap for a holiday that takes place in April! I mean what the bloody hell is going on?!
It's like all these so called holidays are merging into one great big one. Celebrating consumerism and worshiping at the altar of Brand Name Product.
So I repeat: Bah, humbug!