Monday 29 June 2009

The Simple Woman's Day Book

FOR TODAY, June 29th, 2009 ...

Outside My Window...

It's very early and the sky is that indescriminate colour of greyish early dawn, but rumour has it we are going to have a stinker of a heat wave this week! Not bad . . . not bad . . . I am not really a lover of heat waves, but then again, beggars can't be choosers, and it will be nice to have the sun and heat for a time. It does rain an awful lot over here. Todd will absolutely love it as he doesn't mind the heat at all. Myself, I find it just drains my energy to nil . . .

"Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it."
- Russel Baker

I am thinking...
About all the hooplah re Michael Jackson's passing. I know he was a big star, and I agree that he was close to genius when it came to music and his videos, but, for crying out loud, we are not talking about some great political leader here, or someone who did something great to help and change this world we live in! I just don't get it.

I am thankful for...
Two feet that are firmly planted on the ground and in reality.

From the kitchen...
There is some leftover blueberry tart on the counter, a banana bread, and some cheese scones . . . but not a lot of anything else. I do have plans to do a bit of baking this afternoon, but a lot depends on how hot it really gets.

I am wearing...
A white cotton nightie with pin tucks down the front and some embroidery across the yolk. It's one of my favourite nighties. I only really wear it in the summertime when it gets very hot. I always feel really feminine in it and a bit like a princess. I know . . . me<===wierd. I am creating...
I am still working on something really special that I hope to be able to tell you all about really soon. I hate that I haven't had time these past few weeks to pick up my paints and brushes. I am just itching to get some painting done! I have 3 comissions that I need to get started on and soon!

I am going...
Only a few days more of work and then I am on my summer holidays for a few weeks! I can't wait! I have Young Women's on Thursday evening and then our Scripture Study Group on Friday evening. I think we have a picnic planned for Saturday to kick off our holiday. We will probably go to Sissinghurst for it, or maybe Bodium Castle. It all depends on what kind of mood we are in. We're so lucky to live relatively close to some of these wonderful historical sites. Perhaps we'll go to Battle. We went there with some friends a couple of summer's ago, but it was a very rainy day when we went and we didn't get to see as much as we would have liked to see.

I am reading...

The Commoner, by John Burnham Swartz. Set in the year 1959, this is the story of a young woman named Haruko who married the crown prince of Japan, the heir to the Crysanthemum throne. She is the first non-aristocratic woman to do so in the history of the most secretive and mysterious monarchies in the world. It's both interesting and fascinating and I am quite enjoying it. I do love oriental culture and find it very interesting to read about.

I am hoping...
My play list stopped working for me a couple of days ago, something to do with the titles on it not being available to listen to in this country. I have gone to the site and can find no imformation about this at all and in fact nobody's play list works for me, and I can't seem to be able to listen to any of their music at all. I wish I could find a site that had music on it that I can listen to. I miss it, and I don't understand the why's and wherefore's at all!!

I am hearing...
It's very quiet in here this morning. The birds are being very quiet, which usually means a very warm day and the fridge is humming away. I can hear the clock ticking on the wall and Jess snoring by my feet. A couple of mornings ago I heard a sound like a small humming bird beating itself against one of the windows down here, only to discover that it was one of those huge French Hornets that come over here in the summer from France! I hate those things. They scare me to death, but my hubby the hero took care of it for me.

Around the house...
yayy!! We got the kitchen painting finished. Now all I have to do is get some new curtains made for the windows. It doesn't look much different actually, but it does look a lot fresher.

One of my favorite things...
Is visiting other people's pages and reading their blogs. I have not had a lot of time these past few weeks to do that. I don't know where the time seems to disappear, but it just seems to fly by. I miss visiting them. They become like old friends and when you haven't had a chance to read their words for a time, you really do feel a sense of loss. I know that my readership has dropped in these past few weeks as well and I am wondering why . . . mayhap everyone is busy and feeling a lack of time just as I am.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...
There are a few more days of work until my holidays to get through and then I must get all packed for our trip to Austria. I have to get my mother's birthday present packed up and into the post as well. Speaking of my mother, she had cataract surgery last Thursday and could really use some prayers. It hasn't turned out that well and she has almost lost her sight in that eye altogether now. She had Shingles down that whole side of her head and face for most of the past year and a half, along with a type of infection in that same eye, which has really given her a lot of problems. If you could spare a few prayers for her, I would really appreciate it, as would she.

Terri, is having her shoulder operated on tommorrow so a few prayers for her would be much appreciated as well. Todd and I went to visit her yesterday afternoon and it was so nice to see her. She's doing quite well, considering she has had a shattered shoulder and arm for almost two weeks now and all the pain involved!! I cannot believe that they have let this poor woman go for so long without doing anything about it. That is the National Health Service for you! Millions of pounds get pumped into it each year, and yet the services go down, down and further down. Where is all that money going to I wonder. It's quite disgraceful. There has to be a better way.

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

The Hollyhocks are all in bloom and so very pretty. I just love cottage garden flowers like hollyhocks and larkspurs . . . the garden is at it's prettiest right now. Oh, I do love this time of year . . .

Why not hop on over to Grandmother Wren's to see some of the other daybooks for today!

I went to get some bread out of our bread bin yesterday to make Todd a sandwich and it had all gone mouldy. What is it about the bread today that it goes mouldy so quickly??? It doesn't seem to last any time at all! Anyways, I quickly made him up some of these really delicious cheese scones. You can have them put together, in the oven and on the table in less than half an hour!

*Hurry Up Cheese Scones*
Makes 10 to 12

Printable Recipe

These are so quick to do and very, very tasty. Best of all, they use ingredients which I always have in my store cupboard.

2 cups self raising flour
2 cups of grated strong cheddar cheese (I use Cathedral brand)
1 1/3 cups of whole milk
pinch of salt
pinch of cayenne pepper

Pre-heat the oven to 225*C/425*F. Lightly butter a large baking tray. Set it aside.

Mix the flour, cheese, salt and cayenne pepper together in a large bowl. Pour in the milk and stir all together just until combined and equally moistened. It will be a very moist and sticky mixture. Drop by heaped soup-spoonful's onto the prepared baking tray, leaving a good two inches between each. (about 1/4 cup full each)

Bake for about 10 minutes, then turn the tray around and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until well risen and nicely browned.

Serve warm, split in half and spread with plenty of cold butter.

If you'd like to see what I got up to with the last of my strawberries, take a peek at The English Kitchen. Delicious! (Who says simple has to be boring?)


  1. My sentiments exactly regarding MJ. My first tthoughts about him were 'hope he was ready to meet his God'.

    Ooh, it's not weird to feel pretty and like a princess - we're all God's children so we're all from royal blood line :)

    Have a beautiful week 'princess'.

    God Bless,

  2. That is incredible that Teri had to wait so long for her surgery. It should have been done immediately.

    Sad to say, it looks like sooner or later that's the kind of medical system we will be getting over here too, thanks to our new president. I don't know what he is thinking.

  3. So much goodness here to start the week, Marie! I know what you mean about MJ. I am very sorry he has passed, it really is so sad...But there is other news happening too out there. Hope Terri does ok and all will be well soon for her. Austria--so exciting!! Just days until your holiday--hooray! I am only sorry we were not able to make over to England again this summer to share holidays with you. Another year--hope so! That book you are reading, I have also read--it is good, isn't it? I, too, have a fascination with the orient. You mustn't worry about your readership... I think we all are experiencing drop in friends and readers stopping by regularly--everyone is so busy, I find, and it is summer too. I myself will be posting less in July. There is much that needs my closer attention and intention. And summer is so fleeting here--must enjoy while she's here! Hope we get a chance to chat--and especially before you leave for your holidays. LOVE YOU HEAPS, dear friend :o) ((HUGS))

  4. I was hoping someone else would make the first comment about MJ! I was afraid to say that I didn't like his music, nor what I knew of his lifestyle. It's sad a man of only 50 died - but he WAS only a man.

    Try not to feel too bad about the NHS's performance. It always takes a while with any sort of replacement op after trauma. The 'spares' they need can't be bought off the shelf but have to be 'made to measure'. Also. Terri is an elderly woman so they will have been getting her as fit as possible, mentally and physically, before putting her through further trauma.

    My mum was suposed to have had a cataract op in May but she too got shingles. Now it's going to be August all being well.

    Terri and your mum have both been addedt my bit of paper for ths week's concerns.
    love, Angie, xx

  5. As you said it is a blessing to have your feet firmly planted. Seems as so much in our world is bazaar these days. Enjoy your holiday. It sounds wonderful. In the hot weather our bread does the same. I keep it in fridge all the time and it does last longer.

    'On Ya'-ma

  6. Oh yummy I can't wait to try your cheesy scones... thank you for sharing... Blessings on your day!!

  7. Will lift up Terri and your mother in prayer right now. Enjoy your time in Austria - take lots of pictures! And yes, I have to admit I can't understand the whole MJ thing in the news day in and day out either. But that's our culture for you; more concerned about the goings on of "celebrities" than those who really need our help.

    Have a blessed week! Hope it doesn't get TOO hot.

  8. I am sorry about MJ also- especially about how his life was so messed up. The media goes 24/7 with something like this and I wonder what other news-worthy items we are not hearing about...

    So sorry to hear of your friend's surgery being so delayed- I hope our lawmakers wake up before our president pushes through that same kind of health care here.

    I enjoyed reading your daybook:)

    Happy Monday!

    Linda C

  9. I totally agree with you re Michael Jackson. I am faced with pages and pages about him in my daily paper! Like you I liked some of his music but to create such hype about him in death is beyond the pale.
    He was rather self indulgent.
    I guess numbers could be down for reading each others journals because the weather has been so good lately. combine that, on my part with Wimbledon and a 'puter' that keeps freezing on me and there you have my excuse Marie.
    I hope you have a fabulous time in Austria.
    This is turning out to be a beautiful summer, unlike all that rain last year.
    I made banana bread recently and had to hide some of it so that I could have a bit too. My grandchildren absolutely adore it!
    Memo to self...make more next time. lol!
    Take care
    Jeanie xxxxx

  10. Stopping by to say hi! I haven't been doing much blog reading lately. Glad to see you are doing well!

  11. Well thank goodness there are some other people in the world not completely hysterical over Michael Jackson. It seems to have taken over the British media and there ARE many other much more important things happening!
    Thank you for the cheese scones recipe - I love anything cheesy!!

  12. Hello Dear,
    I must rush. I can hear John out in the patio cleaning up. I said I would help him... the patios are usually my job to keep clean so actually he is helping me... and I am not out there yet....but I had to stop by and read your day book and say hello.

    How is that for a long intro?

    Have a great week. I hope Terri does well. She and your mom are in my prayers. By the way, I was blind in that eye for over a month after my cateract surgery. It took weeks for the swelling in my retina to go down. I was worried but now I can see well out of that eye. I hope it will be the same for your mom.

    Sending love...must rush out to sweep up dirt and cob Lura

  13. So busy, Marie! I agree with you about the hoopla over Michael Jackson -- may he rest in peace. The book (The Commoner) looks wonderful. I'll have to put it on my amazon list. The recipe for quick scones looks divine. Finally, so nice to meet you!

  14. Catching up on your beautiful posts! I love visiting you. It's very relaxing.

    The chicken looked SOOOO good!!!

    Loved the picture of the temple.

    Looks like you have a fun week to look forward to.
    Have a good day.

  15. Okay, you're in England and you have scones. If you tell me you take afternoon tea, you're my new best friend and I'm coming to visit!

    Agreed on the Michael Jackson hoopla. Enough already. I didn't see this much when Mother Teresa died and she gave her whole life in service to others.

    I'll pray for your mom. Your health care system sounds scary. What's scarier is that I fear our president is heading us the same direction.

    Really enjoyed visiting your blog and will definitely be back to visit. I may visit your recipe site too, but I just started a diet so I may wait until I feel like cheating (I'll be there by this afternoon, I'm quite sure).

  16. Hi Marie
    I am tired of all the hoopla over Michael Jackson too. They even had a moment of silence in the congress for Pete's sake!!
    I am so sorry Teri had to wait sdo long to get her arm cared for. People here in the US are wanting to get healthcare nationalized. They have no idea how it will affect the quality.
    How fortunate you are to have places like Sissinghurst and Bodium Castle. I'd pick Sissinghurst if it were me. The gardens there are so lovely.
    Blessings, Rhondi

  17. oh, my -
    you wrote on so many interesting topics - it's hard to choose what to comment on!

    I'll join with everyone else in feeling that Michael Jackson is getting way too much press. And too much radio time - I was very annoyed yesterday when it seemed every third song was a Michael Jackson tune.
    I didn't care much for his music and as a man - well...I thought he was creepy. (now I feel guilty. Oh, dear)

    Lovely thoughts in your daybook - castles and scones - loved the quote about summer - I'm intrigued by the book you're reading - all in all, this was a charming visit.

    Thank you for linking in at Grandmother Wren's. I'll be thinking of your Mom - I had the herpes/shingle infection in my eye too - ouch! I guess it's still there, just dormant now - I pray all goes well for your Mother and for your friend's shoulder, too.

    Enjoy your holiday -
    Please check back in when you return!

  18. I really enjoyed reading your daybook. Like you, I love reading other people's blogs. I could blog surf all day long.

  19. oooh, have fun in austria! that sounds like a wonderful summer trip!

    and i hope terri's shoulder surgery goes well. that reminds me of what kind of healthcare the united states will have soon...arggg. obama=crazy. obama followers= even crazier. there, i said it:)

  20. Marie, It does sound like a busy week. It will be hot here too just in time for the 4th of July. I hope your mom gets better. I will add her to my prayers. The hollyhocks are gorgeous. Are they from your yard? I have some to plant of my own. I am slow getting them in the ground. I hope they will still bloom this year. I do love their happy faces! You are so lucky to live by such lovely sounding places to visit or have meetings and such. I hope you will have a wonderful week and enjoy whatever you do.

  21. I'm SO GLAD I'm not the only one sick of MJ! All the media did was bash and harrass him and now that's all they talked about. Is anyone forgetting about the child molestation charges?

    Plus, he was a singer! And he hadn't sung in years! Or produced any music since the 80s!

    (Bashing head against wall.)

  22. Hi Marie -

    I just want to say that I am always inspired by your thoughtful posts. You make me want to be a better person. Your ZEST for life is contagious; I could spend hours reading your blog over and over....then again, I wouldn't be living MY life! :-) I am eagerly looking forward to trying some of your recipes. I even checked out DG's baking book at my library...I tried one of her banana recipes...DELISH. Keep the posts coming, I truly enjoy them and reading about your life.

    Take Care and God Bless,
    A Young American Woman

  23. Marie I'm so sad about your mother and I'll definitely add her to my prayer list. Your cheese scones sound scrumptious and I plan to try them - maybe tomorrow! Have a wonderful holiday and take lots of pictures for us. blessings, marlene

  24. I find the heat so draining also. I totally agree about Jacko...what the heck...the coverage has been ridiculous. Seems not many have two feet planted firmly on the ground.

    I will pray for your sweet mom and Terri. I just think old people should be exempt from all the suffering. A woman in our ward in her 90's got diagnosed with breast cancer. It should not occur to someone that old and precious.

    Have a wonderful time off work, Marie. You have worked so hard and need a big break from it all. Enjoy!

    Love, B

  25. Hello Marie!

    Have a wonderful time in Austria. How fun!

    I am so sorry to hear about your mom's eye. I will keep her in my prayers!

    And I agree completely about Michael Jackson. Good grief!


  26. I liked reading your daybook today, Marie. I missed you and am glad to get a little caught up. So sorry to hear about your mom's health troubles. How is she doing now?

    Sending love from across the pond.


Your comments mean the world to me, and while I may not be able to address each one individually, each one is important to me and each one counts. Thanks so much!