Okay, it’s been a few weeks since I did one of these. The day job has been particularly messy as I’ve coordinated one interstate office move and am knee-deep in planning another. Plus, every spare minute I’ve had has been invested in attaining my word count targets, so apologies to anyone whose blog I usually read and comment on. It’s not you; it really is me. Anyways, apologies. I can’t promise I’ll be better next week – at the blog reading and commenting thing – but I will try.
Speaking of word count
My nanowrimo total as of now (7am on Sunday morning) stands at 43000, just 1200 shy of where I should be. I’m hoping to catch that up (plus today’s target) today.
You can track the busy days by my word count graph – although, to be fair, most of the words written in November have been written in short grabs whenever possible. Plus, I like the story and think I might have an idea about whodunnit. Maybe.
The jacarandas have finished flowering, and the poincianas have started.
Nothing says Christmas is coming more in our part of the world than poincianas with their fabulous flame-red blooms. Like the Pohutukawa in NZ, they really are the Christmas trees of southeast Queensland.
Speaking of Christmas trees, ours went up last weekend – a couple of weeks early, but Sarah was down for the weekend, so we took advantage of that.
Our Christmas tree goes up with some ceremony each year – usually the first Sunday in December.
Grant makes potato scones and pinwheels; we open a bottle of champagne, and we trim the tree.
Each year we buy a new decoration and as we put them on, we reminisce about when we bought certain ones or what they mean to us. Of course this means that nothing matches, and that’s okay – it’s very us.
This year’s decoration is a squirrel bought because:
a) it’s cute and
b) we’re keeping our fingers crossed for October 2022 in England.
I’ve spent the last week staying with my daughter in Hervey Bay. While I was day-jobbing as usual, I was also there for the final clean and hand back of her old rental unit. I’ll miss the views, the sea breeze and the pool in the complex, but not the noise from the weekend and holiday rentals, or the damp problems, dodgy furniture, and lack of space in the unit itself.
The heat and humidity have been off the scale, and I’ve been endlessly whining (to anyone who’ll listen) about how hot I am and how I can’t think clearly because of how hot I am and how I can’t sleep because of how hot I am and how there’s a massive cane toad (so gross) obviously just under my window making a weird, repetitive quacking noise over and flipping over all night. I’m home now, and all I can say is hallelujah for ducted aircon. (I’m such a princess).
On the upside, one morning while out walking I saw this osprey having his breakfast on the jetty…
and found a new (to me) place for coffee. If you’re ever in the Bay, check out Cody’s Place on The Esplanade at Torquay. It’s quirky, and has great coffee.
I saw a pirate ship,
had a dinner catch-up with Debbish, wrote some words at my favourite bar for writing words,
had brekky at my favourite place for having brekky (Hervey Bay General Store),
and helped trim Sarah’s first Christmas tree – where everything matches.
In the kitchen
Just like poincianas, nothing says Christmas like a good annual round-up list – and this week they’ve all been coming. Lists about the people and events who marked 2021, best books of the year, must-watch TV shows…that sort of thing. The lists I’ve most been keen to see though have, of course, been the cookbook lists. 2021 for all its continued covid madness has been a boom year for great cookbooks and I can’t wait to get my hands on some more and cook from them.
I normally bake a Christmas cake (I use Delia Smith’s recipe every year) but half of last year’s cake went in the freezer as our anticipated visitors were stuck on the other side of the border so as Grant is the only one who really eats it, I won’t be doing one this year. (Although I might do a Dundee cake instead…watch this space).
I did, however, make these orange and cinnamon biscuits as my first Christmassy bake. They filled the house with an amazing smell and I’ll post the recipe on BKD when I finish today’s word count.
On Friday our book club (Donna, Sue and Deb) had our end of book bake. This time around we went for something different – Pears Belle Helene. Normally it would be served with ice cream but we had none. As always there was a lot of fun to be had and if you want the recipe, you’ll find it here.. We’re currently reading Charlotte Bronte’s first book, The Professor, and I suspect I’ll be heading back to Yorkshire for something festive for that one.
Okay, that’s it from me… off to tackle that word target.