Wednesday, 20 August 2008

MeMe MeMe

Good morning everyone. No, that's not me singing, although it might seem like it. Maddy of Maddy's Glass House tagged me yesterday to do the Six Quirky Things About Me meme again and I was just trying to be cute. Thanks for the tag Maddy. I've only just recently done this meme, but I will endeavor to do it again. I'm not really sure that there are six things about me that people don't already know, but I'll give it a good go! I thought I would do it a bit differently this time, and without further adieu here is

Marie's Illustrated Six Quirky Things About Me:
(illustrations by Marie)

1. From the time I was a little girl, all I ever wanted to be was a mom, wife and homemaker. I wanted to be June Cleaver. I loved my dolls to pieces, literally. I wore out my bake sets. Likewise my toy irons and ironing boards. I loved to play dress up and was always the mom. I once washed my doll clothes in my parent's best bottle of vodka. Through that experience my mother discovered that Vodka was a great wax stripper for floors. Being helpful is my middle name.

2. I love walking in the rain, which is probably a good thing, as I live in England. I love catching raindrops on my tongue, which is probably not such a smart thing these days. I love splashing in puddles. One of my favourite childhood memories is of standing beneath the overhang of our garage roof while the heavens poured buckets down in front of my eyes, just several inches from my relatively dry space. I can remember the sun was still shining and it seemed magical and mysterious and the smell was incredible . . . wet pavement and sunshine all at the same time!!!

3. I love chickens and roosters. I have quite a collection of ceramic and wooden ones and would love to have my own chicken coop with some laying hens. I don't think my boss would go for that though, so it will have to remain a dream for right now. I can remember visiting relatives when I was a girl in the states that had lots of chickens and being allowed to feed them. That's probably where my love affair with them started! I could listen to them clucking away and scratching in the dirt for hours. It's a sound that speaks home to me . . .

4. I believe in making the most of every experience that life hands you, be it good, or be it bad. Every cloud has a silver lining and there is always something to be gained. All of my strengths have been accrued through my weak moments in life and lessons learned . . . quite often . . . the hard way.

5. I believe in taking time to smell the flowers and in experiencing every rich moment of this life I have to live. I want to feel every sunset, and rejoice in every sunrise. I savour the feeling of sunlight on my face and the grass beneath my toes. I drink in the smell of the earth around me . . . in early morning, in late evening, no matter the season, no matter the location . . . I have five senses and I thank God for the blessing of them and I use them, consciously.

6. Life is one big cake and I'm here to eat it. I relish every crumb, and I'm not fussy about which flavour I get either. From the inside to the outside and every bit in between . . . it's all good to me. I love the icing, which is a bonus, but I'm also smart enough to know that the real treasure comes from the inside. Without the inside life would be too sweet to swallow . . .

Now, I'm not going to tag anyone because I just did that, so you can all breathe a huge sigh of relief now . . . all together . . . ahhhhhh . . .

I was thrilled and amazed to receive an award this week from Cathy of Home Sweet Home, Noble . It's an I love your blog award! Thanks so much Cathy! (By the way, I love, Love, LOVE your pincushions!!!) This is the very first one ever of this particular award that I have gotten and it means the world to me!

Now I have to pass it on to seven others so here goes: Rhondi , Tracy ,Prudy , jenjen , Raquel ,Gloria (Canela) , StitchinByTheLake

I love all your blogs and am passing this lovely award on to each of you!! Actually I really love all the blogs I visit regularly, or I wouldn't be visiting them regularly, so if I am a regular visitor of yours, take it, this award for you too, and enjoy!

I'm also ashamed to say that I received this swell award from someone some weeks ago and I now can't remember who it is that gave it to me. I really do appreciate it and I wish I could remember who it was so that I could thank them properly. Whoever you were, I do thank you from the bottom of my heart and I'm so sorry it has taken me so long to let you know that.

We've had some incredibly dismal weather here lately. Summer seems to have taken a flying leap out of here and it has felt more like autumn these past few days. The damp and cold seem to seep right into your very bones. These are soup days . . .

*Simply Tasty Tomato Soup*
Serves 4

This delicious soup couldn’t be easier or tastier. It’s so simple I am almost ashamed to write it down…but it’s too good not to share so here goes!

½ cup finely chopped onion
1 TBS butter
1 (14 ½ oz) tin of diced plum tomatoes with garlic and olive oil
1 (10 ¾ oz) tin of condensed Tomato soup, undiluted (Campbells)
1 cup milk
Boiling water as needed

Melt the butter in a saucepan and sauté the onion until soft and tender. Stir in the tomatoes, untrained, condensed soup and milk. Add boiling water to give you the consistency you desire. (probably only half a cup or so) Bring almost to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer on low for 10 to 15 minutes until all the flavours meld and soup is quite hot. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil on top and a hearty sprinkling of cracked black pepper.

While I'm at it I'll give you the recipe for that incredibly delicious sandwich you see there on the side!

*Grilled Spinach and Cheese Sandwich*
Serves 2 to 4

These sandwiches are really tasty and quite simple to make. It’s a delicious way to get some spinach into your husband and kids without them complaining! I like to use a hearty bread with these, such as an Oat, Honey and Barley loaf. You need a sturdy bread to keep up with the filling!

½ bag fresh spinach chopped
1 cup grated emmenthaler cheese
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup good quality mayonnaise ( I use French)
1 TBS Dijon mustard
4 to 8 slices hearty whole grain bread
4 to 8 slices smoked streaky bacon, cooked until crisp
Mayonnaise for spreading before grilling

Stir together the cheeses, spinach, mayonnaise and mustard. Mix to blend well.

Spread the bread slices each one side with some mayonnaise. Put half of them into a large heated skillet mayonnaise side down. Divide the cheese mixture evenly amongst the slices. Top each with two slices of the cooked bacon and then top with another slice of bread, mayonnaise side up.

Grill in the hot pan until lightly toasted on each side and the cheese is melted. Let sit a few minutes before cutting in half to serve. Yummy!


  1. It is so fun reading your "mememe" and learning more about youyouyou.

    I'm glad that you did it again and so cleverly!!! I love the self portraits (they are paintings of you aren't they?)you included with he mememe. You are so creative and talented.

    I love tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. My mom made it for dinner often. I always feel love when I eat tomato soup. Thanks for showing me a new way to make it.
    I send love your way. Have a great day. Hugs, Lura

  2. Great meme Marie. it has been so cold and damp here lately a bowl of hot soup is just what is needed. Our school cook makes the best lentil soup I have had in a long time, just what you need in a damp wet playground in Scotland - mind you usually in the depths of winter not the end of Summer.

  3. Marie, I've been getting my soup cookbooks out just this morning as well. Yours looks great, nice and creamy, just how I like my tomato soup.

  4. Congratulations on all your wonderful awards! And thank you sooo much for sharing one with me! :o) You are a super-sweetie, Marie! Such fun to read your meme list...And I'm with you all the way on number 5--with with all the sensese, what a blessing. Your soup and and sandwich are just my thing--I could eat this for lunch now...mmm...Oh, funny isn't it, at my place I had soup & salad yesterday...great minds... ;o) Hope to catch you for a chat today. Thanks, again, for the lovely award ((BIG HUGS))

  5. Expensive floor stripper! Love the mememe and the soup and sandwich is simple enough even for me to do (I can only do simple just now!) so thanks for pointing me kitchenwards.
    love, Angie, xx

  6. Congratulations on your awards! And I loved learning more quirky things about you - esp with the pictures.

    That soup looks delicious..I sometimes combine the two by making a grilled cheese + tomato pasta sauce sandwich! Sounds scary, but oh-so-good!!


  7. Loved your "mememe" I have just started blogging,but have been reading yours for awhile.You always bring a smile to my face.I love your outlook on life . I too love
    chickens and roosters,and have always raised them as
    I live on a farm and love to hear the roosters crow and the clucking of hens through out the day not to mention the farm fresh eggs.It is so nice to read about people who have a very strong faith as I do also.

  8. Hi here from Glorias' & am glad I did! hat a fun place this is & I LOVE YOUR ART-WORK! The meme has been beautifully written & I could see little you standing in the dry area, sniffing the flowers, washing up silly stuff in bottles of vodka etc. LOL...what a nice visit this has been! Congrats on the do deserve the! have a great day. Cheers Deeba

  9. That looks like a delicious meal! Congratulations on your awards! You deserve them! You bring me joy every morning!

  10. Thank you so much, Marie! I am honored! Love this soup and sandwich as well as the 6 quirky things. The vodka wax stripper had me laughing! Much love - Raquel XO

  11. Dear Marie, I love the meme and how Lura said is nice know more about you!!! I love to walking at rain too!!! (still!)))) and many thank by the Award dear, is o nice I love it!!!!! You know I LOVE your blog too!!! I try to come all days and not only by the recipes!!!You know!!!
    Marie, Lura,Deeba,Prudy, Sylvie and all the lovelies always come to see me!!! I will have a year of bloggin!!! So I hope to place a special recipe next thursday or Friday!!! You are invited dears!!!! xxxxxxxGloria

  12. I love tomatoe soup! I really want to try this recipe. I'm over from Prudy's blog and I'll be checking back often. I enjoyed my visit!

  13. congrats on the blog award-you deserve it! i'm playing a little catch up today. i just got back from a trip to visit my best friend in utah-it was fun! but i'm happy to be back to blogging:) i loved your "illustrated" things about you-you are so clever to do it that way! i love how you said life is a cake:) i also love your artwork. your work is just beautiful!

  14. Marie,
    Thanks for your sweet words about my pincushions! I love, love, LOVE your art work!! It is just so cute! :)
    Hummm... now I am in the mood for tomato soup and grilled cheese. Going to try your recipes. Thanks for sharing!

  15. I love grilled cheese and soup for supper. I love it, especially on a rainy day. I love your cheese choices. Your paintings are so sweet and pretty and I just can't say how inspiring it is to come and be surrounded by your optimism. It's contagious.

  16. I enjoyed reading your meme and the drawings uo put with it. You have such a healthy positive attitude toward life. I gues that's one of the reasons I enjoy my visits here each day. Thank you so much for the award. It is so cute. I love your blog too! Can't wait for some cooler weather around here, so I can make that tomato soup! We still have temps inthe high 80s and low 90s :(

  17. Great entry, Marie! Why is it that everyone puts grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup? It must be some sort of unwritten rule. That's the combination my mom always fixed and I have always done the same. I can't imgine anything different. Love your drawings ! Linda in WA

  18. So simple, so tasty, so glad you posted it, Marie. A good fallback for unexpected visitors. (Made this a few weeks ago. As Angela said, we've had chilly days here in Scotland this summer!) My partner and work colleague both really enjoyed it. Thanks again.


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