Tuesday 31 March 2020

Red Gold ....one of the little pleasures in Life in these Coronavirus times

What has been your little pleasure today ... I am sure we are all not taking things for granted any more.
My Dad likes nothing more than to share what he has in his garden. My mum always used to say "George ,why do you grow so much " He gets great pleasure from growing plants especially vegetables in this garden although he has a good display of flowers too . And we mustn't forget fruit.. Well that is his forte too, Tomatoes are fruit ..
Today I was the chosen one.... to go and pick red gold .... yes red gold . We all know there is white, rose and yellow gold but this is red..   So carefully I cut 4 pieces all from different plants as not just to "rob" one . It is too early in the season yet to have enough to make a pie or crumble.

So may I present my first taste red gold of the season..... Rhubarb . Proper North Yorkshire Rhubabr none of this forced stuff. Fresh out of the garden which is doing well with a good dollop of muck out of the fold yard on it for fertiliser .

It was quite a good day despite the weather not been as sunny as last week when this arrived in the post this morning . I have been shortlisted in the Serviced Apartment Award 2020  as the Best Operator 1 - 50 Units categories . And what made it even better was the postman didn't see the stamp hadn't been marked so I can use it again. He has a nasty habit of scribbling over the top of stamps if they haven't been marked . Although we must grumble as we are grateful he brings our post. Over the last couple of weeks he doesn't open the door and put it on the table any more . I have put an empty Kitty cat food box outside and he now pops it in there . I go outside for it, take everything out of the envelopes ,put the envelopes on the fire and then wash my hand thoroughly .  Even little changes like this make me feel a little safer .
Keep safe everyone and when  you put the dustbin out as a dustbin man, one said that he touched around 2000 a day  so you need to be extra careful there too ,when touching the handle x

Monday 30 March 2020

Wild Garlic and Coronavirus

As we all adjust to isolating ourselves, this will be my 4th week of only going out when there was no other way, my mind goes into overdrive of what can I do today . I must add my cousin admitted yesterday she thought I was mad when I moaned at her 2 weeks ago for taking the train from Scarborough to York to meet some friends for lunch .In fact I was quite cross with her ..there was simply no need I said to her. I think she is thinking a bit different about me now .

We are surrounded by wild garlic ...acres of the b... stuff and it stinks when it rains . It encroaches on the garden and  I have always classed it as a weed. Guests would in previous years comment on it . Chefs rave about it ,people go crazy for it ..the equivalent attraction as cat to catnip.
Then I thought garlic is supposed to be good for you ..when I google it I came up with all positive things so now every day I go out into the woods and pick a  basket full ,and then I am drying it .
The house stinks of it and every night as Jack goes to bed early I dry some on top of the Jotul log burner and the rest is in the Aga . If this Coronavirus attempts to get into our house I am going to give it a good

run for its money . I am not giving up easily.

  • Garlic was (and still is) believed to protect against wreckage and drowning, leading sailors to take cloves on deck.
  • Throughout Europe, garlic was historically placed in the home to keep out all forms of evil, and in particular it was hung above the doorway to ward off the evil eye.
  • Wearing garlic about the person was believed to protect against inclement weather, monsters and enemy attack.
  • Biting into garlic could repel evil spirits, and it was frequently placed beneath children’s pillows to protect them in their sleep.
  • Brides carried cloves of garlic in their pockets to bring them luck and keep ill fortune at bay, and rubbing garlic onto pots and pans before use was supposed to remove mystical negativity which may otherwise have contaminated the food.
  • Garlic was also a key ingredient in traditional spells designed to ward off ailments such as hepatitis.

Sunday 29 March 2020

Keeping Baking.... lets beat this Coronavirus

Thanks to Treacle's Cakes for this biscuit recipe. I see so many of my friends baking and cooking .Doing baking, a lot of them wont have done ..some never and some not for a long time. 

 Baking can be quite therapeutic if you are like me  Others think yoga  ticks the boxes - each to their own. Yoga to me I think of  frogs...remember the Green Goddess . And I haven't time to close your eyes, breathe and rellllllllax. I do that when I go to bed. 
Years ago when I was at college, we had this yoga teacher come in and give a class ,even back them I couldn't stay still and wriggled about . She said I was being a disruptive influence ..me .... . She didn't bar me but needless to say I used to skive off that lesson and to this day  if anyone say yoga I think of frogs 

Anyway back to the biscuits.. So if you aren't going to a yoga class you will have time to make these. 

120g self raising flour, 75g brown sugar, 75g porridge oats, 100g butter, 1tbsp golden syrup, 1/2tsp bicarbonate of soda.
Preheat oven to 170°C and line 2 baking trays. Put all dry ingredients in a bowl. Melt butter and syrup gently in a pan. Once melted add dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon. Form balls the size of walnuts and place well spaced on your baking trays, flatten slightly or squish as Josh did! Bake for 10 minutes then swap trays in oven and bake for 5 more minutes or until golden. Leave to cool on the trays for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. These are also great if you add in 50g of choc chips or very finely chopped apricots. Happy Sunday xx🍪Image may contain: food

Friday 27 March 2020

Something new every day .... my Coronavirus daily report.

We they say you learn some thing new every day..Oh my goodness dare I admit it I always thought it was The North Star .When I was very young I thought it was the star my granny lived on and polished every night . So as I started to write my blog tonight as we live in a "dark skies are" I thought the North Star might have a posh name and then I thought well it was more in the west so I had better check and this is what I came up with .... 
Sirius A
Sirius, also known as the Dog Star or Sirius A, is the brightest star in Earth's night sky. The name means "glowing" in Greek — a fitting description, as only a few planets, the full moon and the International Space Station outshine this star.
Quite appropriate really as we have ,as some of you might know Cuckavalda Gundogs  so Dog star it is and the new moon too bringing us hope and light .
So this was at dusk tonight here at home in North Yorkshire ... the final calls of the
birds and they where making there way to bed. I am sure the wrens had already gone as they live in the porch  and fly out as soon as I open the door.Poor little mites I bet they get so cross with my having been bobbing about all day and then me disturbing them.
We have been blessed again with a sunny day, The land is drying up well and the tractors are able to get into the fields without making too many ruts and wheelings. 
So it is good night for me and good night from the birds .

Thursday 26 March 2020

Goose for tea. ...Fight Coronavirus

Well, we all have breakfast , so we all agree it is called breakfast.... no problem understanding that ... but then we come to 12 noon when we have our dinner a lot of people have lunch . We have our tea around 5pm .Now some would think tea is to drink or afternoon tea is when you go to Betty's with your god mother or other generous soul who digs deep into their pocket. Our tea is proper food which is  a hot meal sometimes followed by a pudding. Not a Yorkshire pudding so you could call it sweet or dessert . Yorkshire Puddings you have as the beginning  course of a meal Oh dear how do foreigners cope with the English language, let along sort our eating habits out .
Supper when I was a child was maybe toast, a teacake or some thing plain and fried cheese after Brownies on a Monday night .Goodness knows why, other than thinking the cheese had gone a bit dry and it needed eating up .
If you went to school at Ampleforth College or some other posh school you had supper ,but supper is actually high tea but a bit later ......Hope you are still following me .... Supper to the village children was supper you had near bedtime .
If you go to someone house in your "posh clothes" you have dinner approx 8pm, have lots of knives and forks and at least 4 courses of food  or supper would be 2 or 3 courses.
Jack who doesn't like to eat late if we invite people to eat we say come to have a bit of tea with us about 6pm ...I like to think people dont go home hungry, so this can give me the scope of added another course if I have time to make another. I think my 8 course "tea" I cooked a few years ago is still talked about . That was for 15 people to celebrate Jacoponi our Italian friends birthday .

When I bought my Christmas goose I bought another 2 as well . One for Easter and then one for another time probably around Jacks birthday. Anyway, I decided we are all well at the moment and in these uncertain days we dont know what Easter will hold so rather than not have one and enjoy I took it out of the freezer and we had it for tea. Maybe this goes back to my Brownie days of be prepared or was that just the Scouts that said that , Along with Yorkshire puddings and all the trimmings . I ate far too much crispy skin, but why not enjoy what you want. Enjoy today attitude at the moment ..
So if you have something hidden away in your freezer treat yourself now as for us if Coronavirus is going visit I also have plenty of goose grease to rub on our chests .

And hopefully it wont be long before we are all having meals together with friends and family like we are in the bottom photo.

Look to the Skies ...

Isn’t the sky amazing? Beautiful colours, amazing patterns, and it’s always there for us. Even if the only thing you can do is to look out of the window up at the sky you will find relief. 

Take comfort from the fact that the sun rises and the sun sets and whether you are a morning lark or a night owl there are some dramatic skies.
I am a night owl ... where as Jack  doesn't find it hard to get up by 4.30am  ... without an alarm clock.  For me I am happy to be burning the midnight owl. Apparently it is due to the time you are born. Jack was born at 3.20pm and I was born 10 past midnight . 

I wish I could be one of these early morning people and occasionally I do get up early when  the dew is still on the grass ,the morning chorus is in full flow ,it is a wonderful way to see nature uncurl after its nights rest. 

As we can't  share our daffodils with you this year So thought you might like to see what is going on here . I am sure they will come up again next year when our doors are open again . Another part of nature's cycle

What we need to focus is on the little things in life that we in our fast tracking lives have forgotten about over the last 30 years or so .

Nature has its own way of healing ,embrace it . Easy for me to say ,you will think, living where I do.  Yes I am very very lucky, but even if you grow a small pot of herbs on your window sills, you can tend it and see how it grows . Put a few bread crumbs out on the sill too and you may be surprised that you will get a little visitors fly down to visit you . 

Tuesday 24 March 2020

When you see acts of kindness like this we will win Coronavirus

When you see acts of kindness like this ,we know the we will beat Coronavirus . Adam Jackson recently became head chef at the Feversham Arms in Helmsley and today this is what he posted

Lamb shoulder pasta on the go for n h s front line workers at York district hospital . To be delivered later today . Immensely proud of all you front line workers 💙❤️ we all rely on your bravery and hard work x
Not only did he do this but he also created a pudding for them . It is deeds of kindness like these that will all help us get through this time and together as we #CaringAndShare we will beat Coronavirus  Image may contain: foodImage may contain: foodImage may contain: food

Just so you know ..Coronavirus Lockdown

Minster FM News

Coronavirus lockdown in the UK: Here's a guide to what you can (and can't) do

Coronavirus lockdown in the UK: Here's a guide to what you can (and can't) do
Published at 9:13pm 23rd March 2020. (Updated at 11:14pm 23rd March 2020)

Boris Johnson has announced a series of wide-ranging measures to tackle the UK's coronavirus outbreak.
The headline from Mr Johnson's address to the nation is simple.
Britons must stay at home and only leave the house under a small number of circumstances in order to help in the fight against COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
So when can I leave the house?
Effective immediately, the government says you can go outside only for "very limited purposes":
  • Shopping for basics necessities like food and medicine, with Downing Street saying you should do this "as infrequently as possible" and use food delivery services "where you can"
  • One form of exercise a day, such as a run, walk or cycle. This can be done alone or with members of your household
  • Any medical need, to give care or to help a vulnerable person
  • Travelling to and from work, but only if this is "absolutely necessary" and cannot be done from home
"These four reasons are exceptions," the government's latest guidance says.
"Even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2m (6.5ft) apart from anyone outside of your household."
If you work in what the government has deemed a "critical sector", or your child has been identified as vulnerable, you can still take your children to school.
What about seeing friends and family?
If your friends ask to meet you, you should say no.
You should also not be meeting members of your family who do not live in your home.
What else did the PM announce?
All shops selling "non-essential" goods will be closed, as will a range of public spaces and venues.
This covers:
  • Stores selling clothing and electronics
  • Hair, beauty and nail salons
  • Libraries, community centres and youth centres
  • Playgrounds, outdoor gyms and sports courts
  • Places of worship
  • Outdoor and indoor markets, excluding food markets
  • Bowling alleys, arcades and soft play facilities
  • Hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, campsites, caravan parks, and boarding houses for commercial/leisure use. This excludes permanent residents and key workers
    Public gatherings of more than two people are also banned.
    There are two exceptions to this, according to the government's guidance:
    • Where the gathering is of a group of people who live together. For example, this means a parent can take their children to the shops if there is no option to leave them at home
    • Where it is essential for work purposes. The guidance states that workers should try to minimise all meetings and other gatherings in the workplace
    All social events, including weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies, are also banned - but funerals can go ahead with immediate members of family in attendance.
    Parks will stay open for exercise, but gatherings there will be dispersed.
    How will the government enforce this?
    Police will have powers to disperse gatherings, while anyone who is found not to be following the rules could be fined.
    How long will these restrictions last for?
    The PM said the restrictions will be "kept under constant review" and last for a minimum of three weeks.
    At that point, the government will examine the evidence and see if they can be relaxed.

    Shopping, Coronavirus and Helmsley and Kerrianne

    With been isolated for the last few days and feeling quite safe I decided I had better make a quick trip to Helmsley ,which is our local market town and mainly where I shop .

    Shopping in Helmsley to me usually means popping in to see friends on the way and a mooch round. "I wont be long" I said to Jack as I usually do .. and he replied "See you tomorrow, have a nice time" as he usually does as he knows I am often waylaid and away for several hours returning just in time to get his food ready .. When Jack goes "shopping" it is usually to get something for the dogs ,a new tyre , fuel for the pick up ...that sort of stuff and is back before I realise he has gone him .
    I went with a scarf wrapped my neck and big enough I could pull it up when I got to Helmsley ,I wore a face mask the other day when I went further but thought I wouldn't go that far today but I did wear my plastic gloves.

    Fortunately there was not a lot of people about and the ones I came across I gave wide berth too. I went to Barclays and the girls there are always pleasant and it was good only one person was allowed in the bank at a time. Then I scuttled down the street to the Post Office and our local little supermarket ,Costcutters, which are in the same building . A special mention to Kerrianne Linning and the young man who served me. He is new and I apologised for buy 2 of most things, but one lot was for my dad Kerrianne would have known this, but he was so pleasant and was so calm as I had a job to get the money out of my purse with my rubber gloves I got one of them stuck in the zip...Talk about Bridget Jones .
     I managed to get tomatoes, oranges, lemons, gravy salts, a newspaper for my Dad and some cow[milk] and a few other bits and bobs .I always shop here so I didn't feel bad about filling my basket. I wonder how many people are using this lovely little shop now ..I just hope they are going to use it after the crisis is over.

    And then tonight I got an email from Kerrianne to apologies, yes apologise ,that I couldn't use the Post Office as they had just had 6 deliveries and needed to get it on the shelves.  What a kind but unnecessary gesture.  There was a man the young man had to deal with who had quite a bee in his bonnet  because the Post Office wasn't open ... we will get through all this if only we al pull together. So lucky to have shops and people around us like her.
    Jack couldn't believe I was home so quick. I pushed all my clothes and scarf into the washing machine and I drew a bath and hopefully if there was any germs I have done enough to keep safe.
    Image result for costcutter helmsley post officeImage may contain: Kerrianne Linning, smiling, selfie and closeup