Easter, again.

easter 2014

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Recognizing facial expressions–Horror and Confusion

1 Chocolate

Also, by a stroke of good luck, another of my short stories, “Irish Passage,” has been published in “What’s Your Sign,” by Kind of a Hurricane Press if you fancy a little light reading.

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Earwigging the wise

Please scroll down for Smiley Saturday / SOOC

“It’s just grossly unfair! Don ya know how lucky you are?”
“Me? I am be lucky?”
“Yeah. You sure are the luckiest kid I ever knew.”
“I am be lucky?”
“Yeah. Jus tell me this. What other kid on the planet get to eat chocolate every day? Huh? Well?”
“Right! You. Just you. Only you. Nobody else on the planet gets to eat chocolate every day. It’s just not fair.”
“Not fair?”
“No! In fact…..now I come to think of it you get chocolate more than once a day…..you get your chocolate in your Advent Calendar, sometimes you get Nutella sandwiches and you always get chocolate pudding if you eat the other crap.”
“Food you don’t like.”

All too often I need an independent third party perspective on domestic matters. I believe we have reached the point where we need to scale down chocolate consumption, now that a more broadly based diet has been “generalized.”

Here’s an update on that one:-

11. Sat – wholewheat pizza with pepperoni, mozzarella and spinach, bean burrito
12. Teriyaki chicken, chard and brown rice
13. Custard filled éclairs
14. Cut apple pieces
15. Shredded gem lettuce, grated raw carrot, chopped tomatoes, sunflower seeds, Chinese dressing and terryaki chicken
16. Vanilla pudding with chocolate chips
17. Thai chicken curry [mild] steamed greens brown rice
18. Macaroni with fresh chopped tomatoes, garlic, spring [green onions], sautéed celery, carrot and onion
19. First ever whole [small] slice of pizza [red pepper, onion, tomatoe, spinache and chese]
20. Macaroni and beef ravioli, egg nog
21. A prune!
22. Lemon pepper pappardell, onions, garlic, and bacon
23. Pumpkin and coconut bread
24. 3 prunes
25. Popcorn
26. Toasted open cheddar cheese sandwich [first ever toast]
27. Fresh apple slices [skin on]
28. Non chilli chilli with mashed potatoes and white French bread
29. One scoop of TJ’s sun dried tomato and pesto torta on one tortilla chip
30. Meatloaf and gravy, scalloped potatoes and mixed [frozen] vegetables
31. Chilli with kidney beans [mild] with mashed potatoes and mixed [frozen] vegetables – new phrase = chew it or you’ll choke!
32. Mushroom gnocchi [2] large pasta shells with spinach and mushroom
33. Hot dog in white hot dog bun [half]

One taste, teaspoon or half teaspoon of each of the following
34. Roast potato
35. Roast parsnip with rosemary
36. Garlic mushroom
37. Sautéed crook neck squash and courgettes
38. Pureed sweet potatoes
39. Pureed carrots
40. Pureed swede
41. Cauliflower in bechamel
42. White Corn on the cob
43. Brussel sprouts and chestnuts
44. Creamed spinach and toasted almonds
45. Green beans
46. Leeks in white sauce
47. Pearl onions in cheese sauce
48. Steamed brocolli
49. Sausage
50. Bacon
51. Turkey
52. Gravy
53. Cranberry and orange sauce
54. Chestnut stuffing
55. Parsley stuffing
56. Yorkshire pudding
57. Cornbread muffin [Owen’s recipe]
58. Cinnamon raisin English muffin toasted with butter [scored 7!}
59. Home-made meat loaf and gravy, pureed carrots, creamed spinach and leeks with pearl onions
60. Pecan pie and cream
61. Couscous and apricot turkey tangine
62. Whole pasta, pesto, garlic, prawns [shrimp]
63. Apricot sausages, mashed potato, half a brussel sprout, leek, sweet potato
64. Savoury turkey croquettes, spinach nuggets, sweet potato, mashed swede [rutabaga] marinara sauce
65. Wholewheat English muffin with nutella Toasted!
66. Turkey meatballs, marinara sauce [with spinach] and fettucine
67. Sticky Toffee Pudding
68. Roasted pepper and tomato soup, sausage roll, crab cake, cheese quiche, mushroom turnover.
69. Cinnamon raisin toast with butter [one third of a slice!]
70. Campbells chicken and stars soup [small cup] TJ’s individual mini cheese tomato and pepperoni pizza = all of it
71. home made shepherds pie with frozen peas, much lower level of protest [apart from the poisonous peas] Half slice of home baked bread and smear of poisonous butter
72. ‘spicy’ peanut cabbage, bacon, onion, spinach scramble

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Rabid over rabbits


Americans would describe my current mood as 'pissed.' This actually means that I am drunk. I would say that I am pissed off, which means that I am annoyed, or ever so slightly dejected. As much as I try, I am unable to extract myself and my family from the continuing influence of another family.

After the “Easter debacle” we enjoy a trouble free week, as my daughter is unwell and stays at home for a few days. We are resolute, no more shenanigans.

On returning home after her first day back at school, I discover that she is in mourning for the loss of her friendship with pal. Pal now enjoys a relationship with a boy, her seventeenth boyfriend. Her date book is now full, with no time left over for my daughter. I sympathise with her loss, whilst secretly enjoying our easy escape. I explain that sadly, this is so often the way with many girls but that she should not be down-hearted. If she is a true friend, she will be patient and understanding, wait for the boyfriend to move on and her pal's loyalty to return.

I think this is one of the few times that I am genuinely pleased that ten year olds date. I dither whether to test her sophistication?
“So is it a lovie dovie kissy kind of relationship?”
“Oh nooo! That comes later.”
I'm tempted to ask how many decades later, but I don't want to push my luck.

When the weekend rolls around again, we are ready for family peace, or if not exactly peace, then our piece of family time.

All in all, we seem well placed, as I accidentally find the Easter chocolates that bought a month ago, a week after Easter has already past. It's almost worthwhile digging them up again from their new hidey hole in the garage, rather than keeping them until next year. A little celebration, to mark our good fortune.

I debate whether to embark upon the tidy toys marathon or to leave it until after the bike ride in the park, when the telephone rings. The pals chat on the phone whilst we adults exchange worried glances. Both my sons dart around the house like energizer bunnies. I'm used to Mr. Speedy and his mosquito tendencies but I am disconcerted that his older brother seems to be on a similar trend. “When?”
“When what dear?'
“When are we go on our “bikes”?”
“15 minutes. Shall we set the timer?”
“Dere is no such fing as the Easter bunny?”
“True but don't go telling any other little children just yet.”
“It is be 15 minutes?”
“Lets go and find the timer together.”
“Does the Easter bunny have a timer?”
“No he has a calendar.”
“You are say 50 minutes or 15 minutes?”
“He has an old calendar?”
“No, I don't think so.”
“I fink he has a timer.”
“I fink his timer is needed dah new batteries.” My daughter's demands come thick and fast, but we hold firm, “Daddy and I will talk about it first, tell her you'll phone back in five minutes.”
I drag the boys out of the garage for the umpteenth time, unable to enrapture them with the passage of time on the timer. “We'll put our shoes on later dears.” I don't think I've ever known them to be so keen to retrieve their hated shoes.

“Dumb, dumb, dumb!”
“No mean words dear.”
“Dumb is not be mean.”
“Er….well ……what does it mean?”
“It is be mean not be talking.”
“Oh that kind of dumb.”
“Yes dah Easter bunny is be dumb.”
“Do you mean dumb 'stupid' or dumb 'not talking'?”
“'Dumb' not talking.”
“Yes you're right, the Easter Bunny doesn't talk.”

Maybe pal should come with us on the bike ride to circumnavigate the possibility of sleepovers and whose house to have a play date? We could deliver her home so that she's not stranded with us indefinitely. Better a few hours in the afternoon at the weekend rather than endless disruptions during the week. We debate back and forth, anticipating potholes and pitfalls until we manage to come up with a plan.
“Dah Easter bunny…….he got it wrong.”
“He did? What did he get wrong?”
“It is be a secret.”
“How about you girls go on your scooters and the boys go on their bikes?”
“Brill! That would be awesome.” We exchange adult glances, surely this is the fairest option?
“Better go and phone her then. Do you have the number?” We hear a knocking on the window, and there she is, “pal” has arrived during our five minutes debating time. There is no sign of her deliverer. The girls embrace and exchange breathy information, “I waited in all morning but he didn't call.”
“Some people are so unreliable,” she sympathizes.

I think I can be relied upon to rip the phone from the wall some time pretty darned soon. I track down the boys in the garage to uncover a secret before I forget. They pogo on the concrete with their hands behind their backs in a dry leaf pile of chocolate wrappers. “He is be come two times dis year!”
“I am liking dah dumb bunny!”

I want to ask……but I refrain.

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