Monday, February 17, 2014

Coping with abundance!

Autumn is not far away.  The harvest is just starting to kick into gear, and the 6 zucchini plants have just started to really hit their straps!

There are currently 36 Zucchini and Banana Lunchbox Muffins in the oven, and zucchini appears to have been making an appearance in some form in most meals.  The kids have decided that they really like Zucchini Slice, either hot or cold; yesterday I made 100 calorie soup in the Thermomix (carrots, zucchini - of course - onion, garlic. herbs, capsicum and a tin of tomatoes and some chicken stock, all whizzed up); ratatouille; and barbecued zucchini.  Zucchini may also creep into curries (Butter chicken - with zucchini and spinach), bolognese, pasta sauces and anything else I can think of.

A few years ago, I made a collection of zucchini recipes, just to deal with the bounty.  Zucchini and corn relish , of course, but apart from the muffins, and the apple and zucchini muffins, two other favourites are the zucchini and blueberry loaf, and zucchini and lemon biscuits.

I actually really like zucchini, but I confess to needing some inspiration to get the rest of the troops eating it!

Of course, now the plums are about to come on.  That means plum cakes, plum tarts and all things plummy.  Unfortunately we are still working our way through last years plum sauce, so that one won't be happening this year.  And then it will be tomatoes.  I am eagerly awaiting the tomato bounty because I ran out of the frozen roasted tomato sauce which is my base for pizza, pasta and just about everything else.

In other domesticity, my 34 year old Janome died.  This was a sad day, because I was given the sewing machine by my father when I went to university, in lieu of a clothing allowance.  I made and designed lots of clothes, theatrical costumes, and basic wardrobe items as well as gifts.  Granted, it hadn't been used much in the last 12 months, but it made me sad.  I still have the machine, but the foot control is well and truly cactus.

The Accountant actually made my protest when, after much internet searching and being unable to find a replacement foot control, I announced that I would be buying a new machine.  So, I now have a Husky in the house.  So far it has sewn up one Lily dress, two sundresses for the Princess, a range of hems, and is about to sew up another Lily and a pinafore.  Yay!

Enough for now.  I'd be interested in more zucchini and plum recipes, and finding out new ways of dealing with the bounty.  Plum jam may be in my future, and I think I may need extra hours in the day for the domestic side of life!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Deja Vu all over again!

Here I am - good intentions at the ready.  We'll see how it goes.  Last year, as soon as I resolved to blog again, I ended up working and life just took over my - well, my life, really!

Last year seems to have been a blur of work, children, family and always running as fast as I could just to stay still.

The Christmas break has given me a chance to catch a breath.  So, last year I was a chauffeur and cheerleader for the family.  Watched innumerable junior games of hockey while freezing my bum off on an outdoor concrete grandstand, including a couple in torrential rain and one evening in a sea fog which eerily swallowed the small hockey players and most of the game.  I find myself selfishly hoping that the kids don't want to play hockey this year (or, at least, that they get a roof on the grandstand).

Destructoboy played soccer, Princess sang, in choirs and as a soloist - and started singing lessons and then the singing teacher moved.  Dammit dammit.  Destructoboy started guitar lessons, Princess took a break from piano - well, she refused to practice, so it was more like a recognition of the situation.  Both kids want to do Tae Kwan Do this year.  I have a yellow belt from a long ago time when I was young and had a crush on a black belt.....  Maybe I'll go along, too.

I knitted.  15 adult garments, some socks, some shawls and a baby jacket.  Somewhat more yarn came in than was knitted, so I need to ensure that this balance is redressed.  I finished 20,000m worth of knitting last year.  Just.  With slightly over an hour left.  I even finally managed to take some pictures for my Ravelry project pages!  They look a little less unpopulated now!

So, 2014 needs to be at least tepid sheep.  We'll see how that goes.

What else has happened?  I have seen a little bit of KnightlyKnitter and her family.  I have attacked some of the accumulated crap which has collected in the house and am engaged in filling wheelie bins with rubbish and recycling.  I decided on a minimalist approach to the veggie garden, and have been picking rainbow chard, rhubarb and zucchinis, laughing at the ridiculous number of volunteer pumpkins which sprouted from the compost I spread, and been gently encouraging to the tomatoes and watermelons.

I have been either walking or riding my bike most days.  My knees appear to have decided that they don't like jogging, so I have slowed down to a brisk walk, instead.  Very little travel happened in 2013, once we returned from the UK.  Bendigo, of course with the Hustler Street Posse - even though we no longer stay at Hustler's Road; a weekend with the Princess in Melbourne to see King Kong for her birthday, and a trip to Queensland because we insisted on tagging along when the Accountant went up there on business.

Life rolls on, kids get bigger and busier and school is just around the corner again.  The first month of the year is almost finished, and I have another pile of accumulated detritus from several lives to sort.  Au revoir, until next time!