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February, 2007:

Yarn cravings etc.

In lieu of a knitting pic here’s one of my new mac!

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Polka Dot mac from Marks and Spencer

Thanks for all the lovely comments about Jake. I really appreciate them.

Well I’ve done a bit of travelling since I last blogged. I went to London from Friday 9th until the 11th and stayed with my aunt. Managed a visit to the V&A and looked at some of the fashion exhibits. I avoided the Kylie one. I could have booked tickets in advance but I just didn’t really fancy it.

I also saw Patrick Stewart in Anthony and Cleopatra with my friends Sarah and Andy and Sarah’s sister Rachel. And met up with my old uni friend Mel, she of the fabulous yarn gifts from Tokyo. I became a bit ill during the second act of the play and managed to faint in my seat. I’m ok now though, I think it was a combination of flu lurgy from the previous week and the temperature in the theatre.

On Wednesday I went to Stratford for Valentine’s Day with the bf which was only slightly marred by discovering peas at the bottom of my lasagne at an Italian restaurant. I’m sure it’s a traditional thing in some parts of Italy but for someone who dislikes peas as much as I do it was a bit of a shock! The desert in the form of a deceptively small yet very filling lemon tart – it nearly killed me! – made up for it though.

In fact the lemon tart got me thinking about making one sometime. Although I enjoy cooking I had over the years got into the very lazy habit of just letting Andy cook everything, so now that I’m living on my own I’m of course cooking again. I’ve had some experiments with soups – one butternut squash soup was just too sweet so I won’t be making that again. A mushroom soup, and they can be so bland sometimes, was much more successful. In fact, dare I say it of my own cooking, but it was the best I’d ever tasted.

I used a variation of this recipe but I left out the rosemary, sage and shitake mushrooms. I used 250g of brown cap mushrooms, sliced them very thinly and simmered them for about an hour. I also used Emlea not cream and Marigold stock. The most time consuming part of it was slicing the mushrooms but it was worth it. I ended up with two small portions so next time I’ll have to bite the bullet and use 1kg of mushrooms and make a big pot of it to freeze.

But I digress…back to the lemon tart. I have yet to google for recipes but I do like lemon tart. It’s very fresh after a main course and can be quite light. I haven’t baked or made any kind of desert since I moved so I have to do that soon. Although I may wait until I’ve freed up some space in my already packed freezer. That’s the problem with cooking in large batches, you end up with a full freezer!

But where’s the yarn and the knitting I hear you say? Well I’m still knitting away on the back of the Noro Kureyon cardi. I hope to finish the back this weekend since I’ve already started the left front as travelling knitting.

I’ve been very good and haven’t bought any yarn since San Francisco last September but I’ve had severe yarn purchase cravings recently despite the fact that I don’t need any! I also really want to cast on for a sock even though I have so many other things to finish! Let’s see I still haven’t finished my Art Fibers Kyoto cardi or a Noro Silk Garden cardi. Both are really close to completion too. I just can’t seem to get the urge to look at them. Even the Kyoto one which is gorgeous. Perhaps I need to try and work on it for a little each day or something. Yeah like that’ll happen!

Sad News

As some of you may be aware I have four cats. One Pushkin, lives with me and the other three Sabre, Jake and Tiger live with my ex Andy. Andy and I first met Jake and his uncle Harvey twelve years ago when they were both kittens. They were part British Blue, Harvey was the most blue looking and had delicate stripes within his coat, Jake was mostly white with some blue. Harvey died when he was two and I remember Jake morned him for a long time.

Sadly Jake passed away a couple of days ago. He’d gone out and didn’t return and last night someone contacted Andy to say that they’d found his body in their garden.

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I’ve had a lot of cats over the years and it never gets easier when you lose one. It’s such a shame that they don’t live as long as we do and yet they enrich our lives so much. Jake was a real star of a cat, Andy and I used to joke about sending him out to earn his keep by making adverts. He never failed to enchant all who met him. Even those who didn’t like cats were won over by him! He’ll be remembered very well.