think, thank, thunk...

Calmer now but still sad and cross. It was entirely my fault, I drove full pelt into the back of Slaps car...could it get any worse? I was rushing, as usual, and in my haste put the car into forward not reverse and whilst looking over my shoulder flew head first down the driveway, BANG! How I cried. My beloved Beatle...mangled, but I'm not forgetting the opposition in this driveway derby. I'm going to whisper this so it doesn't sound so bad...his boot no longer opens and for a Project Manager that is akin to stealing a doctors stethoscope or burning a painters brush, you get the picture? However, I'm trying to find the lessons in this and then move on and the overriding note to self is 'SLOW DOWN'.
I think it's a problem we all have on occasion but it's a particular failing of mine, this need to cram as much into every day as possible. So starting today, now, I'm walking not running. I'm going to try and banish the words 'multi-tasking' from my vocabulary. Bearing this in mind I'm not going to ice my brothers birthday cake, whilst listening to Alfie read,whilst putting a wash on, writing a shopping list and setting the table. Alf and I are going to sit down quietly with a glass of milk each, talk about his day and then read as much of his book as he'd like to, complete with funny accents (it's The Hobbit and everyone knows they talk like Worzel Gummidge).

It's still beautifully warm and sunny so I'm going to make the most of the amazing Autumn we're having and dine al fresco tonight. I'm roasting a leg of lamb with garlic and rosemary so the perfect side dish is greek-style baked veggies:

3 onions
6 cloves of garlic
enough potatoes for 5 greedy's cut into fat fingers,
a lemon
salt, dried oregano, 2 sprigs of rosemary and olive oil.

Peel the onions and then cut into wedges.
Jumble the potatoes, peeled cloves of garlic and onions in a roasting tin. Pour over the lemon juice and a little peel, sprinkle with salt and the herbs and glug in that olive oil. I enjoy getting my hands dirty here and making sure all the veggies are evenly coated, but a wooden spoon would suffice if you've just had your nails done.
Bake in the oven at 200 degrees C for about an hour. Shake the tray every so often. The dish is ready once the potatoes are tender, crispy and golden brown.

It's late now and the kids are in bed, the washing up is done and I still feel calm but invigorated. Does that make sense? Cooking dinner to the sounds of Chilled Ibiza was fun... chopping, dancing and drinking wine.
I turned off my mobile and the TV, delegated a little and relaxed a lot. I thoroughly enjoyed the preparation of our meal and not just the eating and it seems to be spreading as we all sat outside for far longer than normal just shooting the breeze. Homework, the gym, text messages, the accountant, all forgotten for a short while. I think Alf summed it up best when he said,
'This feels like holidays'...

Will it last? Gosh, I hope so.

Brown paper packages tied up with string and a homemade tag for a lovely 'little' brother.
Happy Birthday bro!


  1. I think we all need to take stock at times and slow down. Funny I thought it was just living in England that made things seem so much 'faster', always remembering NZ as a slower pace of life, but I think in reality it is just what stage we are at in our lives. Perhaps a lesson for us all. I hope your new 'calm' lasts.

  2. Oh dear! well As they say these things happen for a reason. Slow is good and a lot safer, but it don't come natural to some. I am so going to bake your Greek potatoes Mmmmmmm.
    Am wishing your btother a Happy Bithday and you a wonderful, slow, relaxing week.

  3. hey jus,
    lovely to meet ya - you think and drive and cook just like me lol.
    i am always being admonished to close drawers slowly. it's just not in my genes.
    and - we grew up in a beetle - the sound and smell of "noddy" (the blue VW) is etched in my psyche.
    love the worzel gummidge visions - yeah - samwise gamgee expecially.
    happy days
    katie X