In which I do not have pie.

Lesley’s week-one meal planner includes what looks like a completely delicious big Sunday lunch for proper grownups and families and the kinds of people who get up in the morning-time and make pie. What actually happened this weekend was that I got in from a party at 7am, fell asleep face-down on my bed still fully dressed, woke up at two in the afternoon and staggered downstairs to make myself raisin pancakes, got about halfway through, realised I felt too much like I was actually literally about to die to continue, put the remaining batter in the fridge, crawled sickly up the stairs and slept right till Best Mate came to make sure I was alive at a quarter past ten in the evening. Now it is twenty to six (how the goddamn hell did that happen) and I am eating pasta, peas and grated cheese while wondering slightly forlornly if I will ever be a real girl. It will be dawn soon. Whoops.

Bloody good party, though.

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Oh. my. god.

I am eating these raisin pancakes for breakfast right now and they are possibly one of the nicest things I have ever put in my mouth. I didn’t make them on Monday because I didn’t have all the ingredients then so this is my first time eating them and now I want to have them for breakfast EVERY DAY FOREVER. I made the batter with semi-skimmed milk instead of water and cooked them in butter instead of vegetable oil but they were still really cheap* and dude – dude – there is a breakfast party in my mouth and all the raisin pancakes are invited.

On Sunday morning we are going to have a house full of tired and hungover people – the three of us plus two guests – and now we are all going to have raisin pancakes for breakfast. I have decided. That is a thing.

Seriously you guys. These pancakes are the freaking bomb. Next time I think I will add a little mixed spice to the batter for ENHANCED DELICIOUSNESS. Lesley, you are some kind of crazy breakfast genius. It would never have occured to me to try and make pancakes without egg but I like these WAY MORE than I do “normal” pancakes. And I like normal pancakes a lot.

* Partly because both the milk and the butter were bought by Best Mate and are technically hers and I am a thieving thief

As an aside

I’ve not been getting a huge amount of comments on this blog yet – lovely as though it is to get the ones I am – but I do seem to be garnering rather more likes and follows and pageviews and internet cookies than my comment numbers would lead one to believe.  Which is wonderful. Somehow, however, they are not quite from the sorts of people I might have expected. Hello, people I might not have expected, it is lovely to have you here and you are endlessly welcome. However, here are some things that you might want to know about me and this blog before we go any further:

  • I am fat, and that is okay. I do not intend to try and stop being fat. It’s very nice that so many diet and weight loss blogs are following me now, but I wouldn’t want them to labour under the misapprehension that I am attempting something that actually I think is pointless, expensive and dangerous – not to mention part of a foul culture of bullshit.
  • I am ardently, stridently, proudly and determinedly a feminist*. I am pro-choice, and pro-equal-marriage, and pro-people-being-happy, and pro all those other fun things that come along with being a feminist. I’m totally  willing to enter into a discussion about these things with someone who vehemently opposes me on them if they really want me to, but I’m not sure how much good it will do any of us.
  • I’m both a pagan and a witch. In the context of this blog that isn’t relevant, and I won’t be mentioning it much. It’s wonderful that I now have a couple of overtly Christian followers, and you are very welcome here. I just thought you might want to know that, in case you were a) unaware and uncomfortable with the idea or b) suffering from the delusion that you might be able to somehow convert me. Otherwise, we’re all good! 🙂

* Also, I like adverbs.

Welcome to the new year: same as the old year.

I really love new Year’s Eve.

Like, I really love New Year’s Eve. I love New Year’s Eve in the same way that kids love Christmas or their birthday. In fact, I love New Year’s Eve more than that, because I love Christmas and my birthday like a kid does too but New Year’s Eve is even better. It’s my favorite day of the year, which is actually kind of depressing when you think about it too hard so er, don’t do that. Because I want my love of New Year’s Eve to remain unadulterated by nihilism, even though I just realised how nihilistic it actually is.

One of the most nihilistic things about my love of New Year’s Eve is that it is – every time – the start of a brand new shiny year, unblemished by the flaws and failures of the twelve months that have inevitably preceded it. It’s a whole clean slate; a brand new bedroom that you haven’t made messy yet, an essay you have yet to get dug into and not get a first for, a notebook that you’ll fill with scintillatingly wonderful notes and plans and ideas and somehow your handwriting will no longer look like a drunk spider and you’ll magically be able to draw.

Digression: All through my teens, I kept diaries. Pen and paper diaries, because I am still old enough to have done that. In my head they were always going to look like this:

Image

And instead they were always just page after page of my awful messy borderline-dyspraxic scrawl, with the occasional attempt at a shitty drawing that was worse than the attempts made by my sister who was back then still basically a toddler. She’s fifteen now and a really really good draw-er and I bet her secret private diaries all look amazing. Except they probably don’t exist. I bet she just has a password-protected tumblr. Jesus, I’m so old. Okay, end digression.

The point is I always make New Year’s Resolutions, because there’s a whole big shiny new year for me to do stuff in and be a proper grownup and not fail, and that’s a remarkably tempting idea really. And now it is October, which means we’re well into the final quarter of the year – which has always meant something to me for some reason too, I do seem to get ridiculously romantic about the passage of time – and that means I can start looking back at 2013, which is now a little raggedy around the edges and not very shiny-looking any longer, and try to figure out what sort of a hash I have made of it.

  • Resolution One: Get my working life in order, and start building some kind of Actual Career.
    Well…sort of. I mean, I’m in a much better position right now than I was at the end of last year: I’m not on the dole any longer, and I have been getting enough writing work to scrape by on since April. That said, I am a long way away from being what you might call “self-sufficient”. I wonder if I can somehow find another £500 a month by the end of December? That would be nice. That would mean I didn’t have to rely on anything except my own competence any more, and I would like that. However…I do not know how to do it. Hmm.
  • Resolution Two: Start doing more exercise.
    Dear holy actual god, I had forgotten I wrote this. If anything I am less active than I was when I was thinking these things up and I’ve actually gained about 10lbs over the course of this year. Can we please just gloss over this one?
  • Resolution Three: Try not to get dumped. Getting dumped sucks.
    [laughs] Yeah, so when I wrote these I was at the beginning of a new relationship which was the first one to have happened after the end of one that had significant uprooting-and-complicating effects on pretty much every area of my life. I am pleased to report that I have not yet been dumped, and that The Boyfriend does not seem to have any impending plans to so do.
  • Resolution Four: Do a special thing for every one of the eight festivals.
    Ugh, I feel really rubbishy about messing this one up. It was all going great – we did Imbolc, Ostara, Beltane and Litha – and then I was too disorganised for Lammas and too broke for Mabon. I’m really sad about it, actually, because they were a lot of fun to sort out and it really meant something to me to not be crap with them. It’s Samhain soon enough, though, and I am determined to not screw up for that and Yule. And then next year I can be a completist about it all. Right?

On the whole, I think I’m going to count 2013 as a “tentative win with room for improvement”, I think.

Darling, is this how you omelette?

For most of my life, I didn’t like eggs. I got over it because it was ridiculous (what do you mean, you’re a vegetarian who doesn’t like eggs? what about this GORGEOUS DELICIOUS OMELETTE I have inevitably made you?) but it does mean that I never learned how to cook them.

Today did not get off to a good start. Last night, despite going to bed before midnight, I was tossing and turning till gone 3am and then this morning my alarm didn’t go off because of a battery fail incident and so I woke up at one in the afternoon, spitting feathers about how my BEAUTIFUL ORGANISED WEEK was RUINED and I would NEVER AMOUNT TO ANYTHING because I COULDN’T EVEN GET OUT OF BED IN THE MORNING. Nonetheless, I shambled off downstairs and into the kitchen, determined to try and see this through.

Day 2: Breakfast. for each person, 1 egg fried, boiled, scrambled or poached on 1 slice of toast with spread, followed by a 2nd piece of toast with spread and marmalade.

Did I mention that Best Mate has had a baking phase? There were fourteen eggs in our fridge this morning. Fourteen is a lot of eggs for three scatterbrained and disorganised adults with studenty lifestyles only one of whom ever really cooks at home much and she never cooks eggs. So I decided to have two of them on my two bits of toast, instead. And then I ran into the perennial OH GOD HOW DO YOU COOK EGGS problem.

Back when I was living in Edinburgh and attempting to Broaden My Food Horizons, I decided one evening that I would cook an omelette for my then-boyfriend. I looked up a recipe online and off I went. Ten minutes in, I called for him to come into the kitchen.
“Um, darling? Is this how you omelette? I don’t…I don’t think that this is how you omelette”, I said, dubiously.
He chuckled and rolled his eyes at me in fond exasperation – a common expression on the faces of the people I have relationships with, for some reason or another – and pointed out that it wasn’t how you omelette and it was too far gone for even his mad skillz to turn it into one*, but it was a perfectly decent example of scrambled eggs. So he and I split them between us and they were completely delicious, and all I had to do this morning at one in the afternoon when I’d only been up for five minutes and was really really cross was perfectly replicate a mistake that I made about two years ago while a tiny bit drunk. Easy, right?

I cracked two eggs into a bowl and added a bunch of crap that felt like the right kind of thing to add. Salt, pepper, mixed dried herbs, a splash of milk, a load of grated mature cheddar cheese. Then I mixed it all up with a fork, melted some butter in a frying pan, threw the eggy mixture in and poked it dubiously. What resulted was dry and spongy and really really really salty. Overbuttered toast was supposed to help but actually made the whole thing somehow worse.

Downside: I apparently do not know how to cook eggs yet and only ate half my breakfast.
Upside: Weirdly, I am feeling pretty full nonetheless.

* That particular boyfriend of mine had an excellent line in rescuing cooking that had Gone Wrong. I choose to believe this to be unconnected to the fact that he and I used to do a lot of cooking together.