Friday Links

Happy Friday! This Friday, I am having my haircut and getting myself sorted for working next week, that should be interesting…

Nope, nope, nope. Napoleon was the best general ever and maths proves it.  So much no for this, the maths cannot be right because it’s not possible…

Kale loaf with feta and roasted squash. Ma made this last week with our kale and a squash we grew in the summer. She said it was awesome…

Renting: why are we seeing the death of the living room?

Four in 10 right-to-buy homes are now owned by private landlords. Right to buy has been a disaster for housing in this country, and I say that as someone who has close friends and family that have profited from it. It shouldn’t have happened but we can stop it now.

Muslim foster parents: ‘We’d never had a Christmas tree – it made them so happy’ This is worth reading.

How to make a Christmas party playlist. Honestly, I’ve never made playlists for Christmas parties and my Christmas CD’s do have a lot of Jesus in them. While I will play ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside’ and ‘Blue Christmas’ over and over in all the versions I can get, I will also play ‘Hark the Herald Angels Sing’ and ‘Go Tell It On The Mountain’ until everyone is bored of them.

I’m quitting as a hospital boss: dire NHS funding problems give me no choice

$30 for three brownies! The takedown on the concept is priceless.

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Handmade Christmas: Salt Dough Decorations

Yesterday, I babysat for the Baxters. The children, especially the eldest, are really into making things and the youngest has been telling me that I don’t spend enough time playing with them! So after checking with their mum, I arranged to come over early and decorate some salt dough ornaments with them. Time after school is tricky, children are tired and time before dinner and bedtime is short, so I didn’t want to do the actual making with them because it would take to long to get to the good bits.

On Tuesday, I made the ornaments. I used this recipe on Wholefully and baked them. Mine turned out a bit puffy but I quite liked the effect!After they had cooled I used a spray paint primer on them and allowed them to dry over night.On Wednesday, I let the children loose on them!A quick spray with clear sealer and we were done. You may not get so much glitter all over the place! I think if you just spray painted them, they’d make really good gift tags.

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Handmade Christmas: Fudge

We are 11 days away from Christmas and I find myself in my usual just before Christmas mood, recovering from my December cold, half sorted and with a seemingly huge to do list.

This year has been much easier, I have family Christmas presents in hand, I won’t sort the tree until the weekend before Christmas and Ma and I between us have covered Christmas booze and food is less of an issue because we’re spending Christmas in Shefford.

However, there is a section of Christmas gifting I need to address, the little presents. So the people that you’d like to acknowledge at Christmas but you don’t have to go overboard for. I usually deal with this with food and drink, jam is good, biscuits work, hand and body scrub. This year I thought I’d have a go at making fudge.  This was the recipe I used.

It’s soft, creamy fudge. Which is the way I like to eat it and this version is plain, which as my mother wanted me to know is the only type she enjoys. I didn’t use a non stick saucepan (because I don’t own one big enough), at the beating stage, I used a hand mixer and beat it for a good 10-15 minutes, I really don’t want to think about how long it would take if I’d done it by hand.

 

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What I’ve Read – October/November 2017

I’m way behind on this, mostly because I haven’t really been reading that much. I just wasn’t feeling it, being in a slump is tough, so it was all stuff that I read quickly (in a day) and all escapism. I do think that it’s interesting that I can only really identify the books that annoyed me!

Crossing Hearts – Kimberly Kincaid

Someone to Love – Mary Balogh

I had been putting off reading this and I wish I hadn’t. The set up is ridiculous and not at all believable but I liked it and I liked that, as with all the Balogh books I’ve read, the happy ending doesn’t make it all better.

Wrong to Need You – Alisha Rai

Everyone is going on about this and while the way that the drama is piled on is a bit OTT (I mentioned this in the last book), I do like that sense that everyone in these books is imperfect and trying. They do some iffy things but there is proper imperfect difficult love both romantic and familial.

In for a Penny – Rose Lerner

This was a recommend read and it was fine but really everyone just needed to talk to each other.

Wilde in Love – Eloisa James

This was a throughly enjoyable. completely ridiculous romp. Fun

Test Drive – Marie Hart

Hooking Up – Helena Hunting 

Fun escapism

Forever Again – Shannon Stacey

Fun Shannon Stacey escapism..

Archangel’s Viper – Nalini Singh

Fun, ridiculous escapism. That also moved the whole over arching story forward.

Wait for It – Mariana Zapata

Oh this one annoyed me. I liked it, I was primed to like it but the slut shaming. I really, really, really object to ex girlfriends of the hero being referred to as sluts or money grabbing. Also a 12 year age gap which I didn’t much care for but don’t mind in other contexts..

Bountiful – Sarina Bowen

Sarina Bowen goes back to my favourite series and crosses it over with her current one and it was fun, also escapism but fun.

Someone to Hold – Mary Balogh

I can’t tell you why I liked it but I really did.

Someone to Wed – Mary Balogh

I liked this, I liked the hero and I liked that the heroine was damaged but not defeated and it all worked out.

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Best/Worst – 4 to 10 December 2017

Happy Monday!

Best

Monday was the best day of this week. It was Ma’s birthday and we had a lovely day (I hope she enjoyed herself) we had breakfast, wondered around and went to see Paddington 2.

Worst

I got sick. Friday through Sunday was a complete right off. I thought it was a cold but it’s more throat centred. I missed a party and Grace and wasn’t all that happy about it.

Honourable mentions to getting rained on, coffee with Kathy, dinner with Jane, coughing, another interview booked and lots of Netflix.

 

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Sunday Music

More Christmas music. This doesn’t often make the Christmas music lists but should…

Blind Boys of Alabama with Mavis Staples

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Friday Links

Happy Friday! Here are this weeks links.

Anne of Green Gables: Patron Saint of Girls who ask too many questions

The response to Trump’s Jerusalem declaration has focused too much on the fear of Arab backlash and not enough on why the decision itself is immoral and illegal.

This is a good reminder that it’s December and you should take care of yourself. How I’m fighting Seasonal Affective Disorder. I’m not keen on ‘fighting’ as a term for dealing with illness of any kind but it’s always good to see other people’s strategies to see where/if you can improve your own!

Prince Charles admits he lobbied Alex Salmond over Teach First. This is why I’m a republican and why I really don’t like the fuss about royal weddings and babies, it gives them the idea that their ideas are better/more important than others and it gives them access that Charles is not shy in using despite the convention that he should not. He’s going to be a terrible Head of State….

Having a daughter makes dads more politically polarised.

 

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