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The New Thread

(102 posts)
  • Started 5 months ago by Christine Berrett
  • Latest reply from Helen Hawkins-Ainsley

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  1. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Well that about wraps it up for GBSB 2020, so let's start a new thread for chat - over to you, ladies...

    Posted 5 months ago #
  2. Bloody cheek Mrs. Berrett - I nominated our Helen for Head Girl's job on this string and now you've pinched it.....

    She's been the most stalwart of posters so far and I felt she deserved a promotion (see Sewing Bee page 8 penultimate entry Helen if you don't know what I'm on about.....)

    What a way to start a new string - dissension in the camp.....mumble.....mumble.....

    Posted 5 months ago #
  3. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Well now Mrs Midgley, please remember who is the sole Administrator on this forum?

    (never let it be said that absolute power goes straight to my head)

    Posted 5 months ago #
  4. Hello Mrs. Berrett......well of course it's gone to your head..... but never mind, we still love you to bits.....Helen might not have wanted her promotion anyway I s'pose......

    I'm having a good day today....enjoying the fact I am still alive....... wasn't sure I would be after last night's dinner.......

    On Thursday evening I took some diced lamb out of the freezer (it had only been in there for a year) and left it to defrost overnight. Next morning it went into the slow cooker along with some chopped up carrots, leeks and potatoes. However when I went to add the rest of the ingredients I found my little box of bay leaves were two years out of date (really? - where did that two years go....dunno.) I also needed some red cooking wine - hadn't got any so used some white wine vinegar - that was only a month out of date but I thought 'vinegar....hmm, should be okay) redcurrant jelly, yup that was okay, lentils, yup always got those, Dijon mustard. An unopened jar - but 4 years out of date......oh dear - this was turning into recipe for disaster.

    Anyway I left it in the slow cooker all day and then Friday night turned it out into a bowl and put it in the fridge overnight. Yesterday tea-time I put it into a casserole dish topped it with sliced potatoes and put it in the oven to cook through and roast off the potato topping

    So, we had a lovely dinner last night, lots of nice veggies and gravy but I confess to going to bed wondering if I was going to be poisoned in my sleep and not wake up this morning !!

    However, I'm here, Geoff's here and all in the Midgley household is functioning as normal. I have though thrown away the now opened jar of Dijon mustard and distinctly grey and musty smelling bay leaves (although I hate wasting stuff) - but perhaps better to be safe than sorry.......

    I'm thinking of putting myself forward for the next series of Masterchef or summat - optimism might get me through even if my cooking doesn't........

    Posted 4 months ago #
  5. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Good Morning Brenda, and I'm overjoyed to see that you are still very much with us today!! Please remember that throwing away food that would make you ill is much LESS wasteful than eating it {wink}

    I understand (but don't quote me on this) that there is/was going to be a move away from putting 'Best Before' dates on food to discourage waste. When we were little 'uns our parents would use their nous to decided whether or not something was still fit to eat. Mean-to-say, putting a 'Best Before' date on something like Worcester sauce is a rather pointless exercise...

    Posted 4 months ago #
  6. Hi All

    Welcome to the new week & it's wet.

    Didn't touch the computer yesterday so only just catching up with you.

    Christine is definitely in charge so I don't mind her starting a new topic.

    I've managed to book a short break for us up near to Bamburgh in July - hope it's a dry week.

    I think it was "Use by" dates that were to be replaced by "Best Before" or just to disappear from certain products - how can vinegar go off? Dry herbs can't go off, they just lose their taste. If we get to go to Leicester Brenda you can have some leaves from my bay plant that I bought on one of our weekends - the trip to the American Museum at Bath, I think.

    Anyway I better do some work & will catch up with you all later

    Posted 4 months ago #
  7. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Helen! Lovely to see you on the new thread and very happy that you are not feeling miffed at my high-handed manner ;o)

    I have a bay tree (as in, you can use the bay leaves in cooking) by the back door, and it grows like billy-o. You can't keep a good bay tree down, or so it would seem. Having said which, the dried leaves have a much more distinctive flavour. Wonder if one could dry the leaves oneself??

    Posted 4 months ago #
  8. I've just had to have my password reset - obviously had too much to say for myself.

    Christine, I'm sure you can dry the leaves yourself. Try cutting some & hanging up in a cool place. My bay plant is still fairly small, but it is still in it's original pot as we didn't want it to get too big.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  9. Barbara Stone
    Member

    Christine, its very easy to do - we just cut a bough off, and hang it up in a cool place, then when its dry, strip the leaves off and Bob's your uncle. (actually he's my husband, but who's counting?)
    Helen, Mrs. Pale Bum, hasn't been around much, but I know we've got babies in the garden, as we had a quick view of them, but couldn't find out where they were hiding. We've left a big area at the bottom of the garden as a wild garden, and they do seem to like it down there.
    Talking about dates on food - my Mum is moving, and she and my sister cleared out a cupboard and found a tin of something, dated best before 1989! That went straight in the bin! I did suggest she opened it and find out what it was like, but she didn't like that idea.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  10. I knew someone would know how to dry herbs. As the bay has leaves all year we just pick them when we need & don't bother drying them.

    The froglets seem to have all hopped it after the storm last week so Mick has cleared most of the pond weed (it was getting overgrown), planted some new irises & got some new fish to keep the ones we have company.

    The fireplace is almost finished, then we can start to put things back on the walls.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  11. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Thanks ladies, I will try cutting a branch to dry out and seeing what happens. I know there are fresh bay leaves all year, but I think I actually prefer to use them dried in my cooking. I have in the past had rosemary, thyme, oregano and mint in the garden, but they all died. And I didn't think it was even possible to kill mint! Only the bay is still going strong...

    Posted 4 months ago #
  12. Next door used to have mint that grew on the boundary, but they managed to kill it. I used to cut my side to make mint sauce.

    Let us all know how you get on with the bay leaves.

    I'm having a "fed up" day - really need things back to normal now.
    I'm going to make an effort tonight to finish the stitching for the pocket for the subscription gift bag - can't believe it's taken this long to do 4 watbo patterns. It must something to do with stitching on 40 count.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  13. Christine Berrett
    Administrator

    Well I've cut some bay and hung it up in a cool room - let's see how we go...

    Posted 4 months ago #
  14. Got Andrea's newsletter today & the watbos that are now kits are the four designs I've used for the pocket for my bag. I changed the autumn one as I did't want 3 pictures that are basically all the same. I finished the stitching last night - it now needs pressing & making up

    It's getting very dark outside - think it's going to rain again

    So what are we all going to watch tonight?

    Posted 4 months ago #
  15. Jean Strange
    Member

    Hi everyone
    Well I have a conservatory except final bits. Jeff has painted walls and is putting on skirting boards today. Getting quotes for carpet and blinds. Actual building including plastering 3 weeks and 1 hour out of 3 weeks there was 1 day without anyone here. The 1 hour was the final clean of glass etc. Quite impressed but we feel it is that they have been without work for 3 months. Carpet and blind companies say they are very busy
    .
    As for killing mint mine gets eaten I couldn’t understand what would eat mint but have discovered it’s the ants in my garden!!! My bay tree has gone great guns this year and produced more new leaves than ever before. Might have something to do with not having two small boys pulling it out of its pot and carrying it around the garden by the “stem”. like a sword or lance. Bought a small cutting not one of these fancy topiary things several years ago. Bought a new rosemary plant as mine had got so old and woody. Managed to get a tarragon plant last week they seem to be hard to get had trouble last year too.

    Drying herbs I have heard of the hanging up to dry method have done that with lavender but I am sure I have a book somewhere that gives instructions for drying herbs in the microwave.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  16. Jean, I'm so glad your conservatory is nearly done. Have you got the chairs in it yet?
    The final sign off on ours is due to be done on Tuesday. Mick has finished the fire place (need to get a fire) and it looks so much better than it did before. That means we just need a carpet & some blinds.

    I have gone back to 28 count fabric after 40 count and the holes seem to large!!

    Posted 4 months ago #
  17. Jean Strange
    Member

    Helen haven’t put chairs in yet. Apparently the floor needs another coat of something to seal final screed to make it smooth so carpet tiles can then be laid straight onto floor so Jeff wants to wait until that has been done and carpet tiles laid. Carpet people say can all be done in about half a day. Just waiting for a second quote on carpet tiles then that should be done next week or beginning of one after.

    Had one firm quote for blinds but very expensive!!! Waiting for one other who have been and measured then one other company coming next week.

    Off to caravan tomorrow (first day of opening) just until Tuesday night/Wednesday morning depending on what we feel like. Be nice to get away for a few days.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  18. Hello girls,
    Interesting to see how the conservatories are coming along...won't be long now either of you before the final touches are done and you feel the room really belongs to you, (if you know what I mean)...

    Been in the garden most of today. With all the rain we've been having again the last few days - on and off - the earth is now lovely for weeding so |'ve been going over the new bedding section we have at the end of the garden. I've had the fork on it, turning the ground over and the weeds have come out beautifully - intact with a lovely clump of root so you know you've got the whole thing !!

    Don't know if any of you have been watching Gardeners World on Friday nights. I think Monty Don is excelling himself this year. Apart from all the gardening tips and advice he gives us, he has really been exhorting us to just sit in the garden and listen.... It has been brought to our attention over the last couple of years that he, along with other people, can sometimes find life brings him 'down' a bit and so just lately he seems to be bringing in an element of mindfulness into the programme, so by the end of the hour you can almost feel the sense of calm and tranquillity wash over you that he wants us to experience. It's lovely.

    Did you also see a week or two ago when he had the young lady on whose garden we visited, who is a thalidomide victim. She had hands but they sort of sprung out from her shoulders, making it impossible for her to pick up say a plant pot as her hands couldn't stretch far enough to meet. I was stunned at the positive way she just got on with things and gardened in an 'adapted' sort of way. Bare feet and worked mostly with those. She was inspirational.

    Last night too we visited the garden of some young girls - 3 of whom were Downs Syndrome. They too loved what they were doing in the garden and Monty was just absolutely lovely in his praise of their gardening prowess.

    You don't have to be a gardener to find things in this programme to inspire and humble you.........

    Hope you are having a nice time at the caravan Jean and it's good to know you are now able to make a visit there with the easing of lockdown.

    As for me - well - lovely things are happening here in Crewe too...tomorrow our library re-opens ..... I shall be first on the doorstep - Nantwich library is one of my favourite places - and then on Tuesday - yaaaay - I'm at the hairdressers.......

    Good innit......

    Posted 4 months ago #
  19. Barbara Stone
    Member

    Okay Mrs. M., stop boasting that you managed to get s hairdresser appointment. I desperately need one, but couldn’t get through yesterday, and as she doesn’t open every day, it’s going to be a problem trying to get one. Finally managed to see my mother - only been unable to see her for six months, and we finally managed it on her 95th birthday! Great fun, I can tell you. Busy sorting out her house, prior to moving - anybody know anybody who wants a stairlift? Let me know if you do, and we can have a chat. We went up to London in the van, thank goodness, as we bought so much stuff back with us. Thank heavens the charity shop has given us a date when we can take stuff in.
    The new conservatories sound great, and Jean, I’m jealous that you were able to get to the caravan. One day, we hope to be able to get out and about in our camper van. So, enjoy the easing of the restrictions. As you say Brenda, good innit!

    Posted 4 months ago #
  20. Monday again. At least the wind seems to have calmed down a bit. It was really bad yesterday - stormy without the thunder & lightening, just wind & rain. Not good for the hayfever.

    Jean, hope you have a good break at the caravan - 3 weeks & we will be away for a few days.

    Brenda, we don't watch Gardeners World, but do spend time listening to the birds in our garden. With the lack of planes they have been so much clearer. Good luck at the hairdressers. I've not had mine done for 18 months so another one won't hurt. I do need the tatty ends sorting.

    Barbara, so glad you got to see your mum for her birthday. Where is she moving to? I see my parents every week as I'm doing their shopping - Dad is in the shielding group.

    Went to our local club yesterday evening - so good to get out. They were having a trial run for how they are going to operate by using the committee as guinea pigs. Mick is acting as door man every afternoon this week & a couple of evenings, so I'm not going to see much of him this week.

    Posted 4 months ago #

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