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4hrs 20

Jul. 21st, 2007 | 04:24 am

Well, I've finished. Took me 4hrs 20, including queueing, buying the book and walking a mile home again in the dark. Okay, so I'd got to page 36 before I bought the book. And page 45 by the time I left the shop. But then it was too dark for me to read on the way home. I tried.

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Twelve Days of Christmas

Dec. 15th, 2006 | 02:38 am

So, it's gone 2.30am and I still haven't started the essay due at 12 or the lab report due at 4... Instead I'm messing around on lj. And it's not like it's even particularly diverting...

On the twelfth day of Christmas, caz_in_a_teacup sent to me...
Twelve pimm's reading
Eleven recipes winemaking
Ten delicatessens a-cheesemaking
Nine barbeques baking
Eight trees a-horseriding
Seven cakes a-spring
Six picnics a-cooking
Five blu-u-u-ue skies
Four sunny afternoons
Three fluffy clouds
Two picnic blankets
...and a mango in a frisbee.
Get your own Twelve Days:


Okay, so I like the bit about the mango in the frisbee.

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Sleep-deprived loon

Nov. 29th, 2006 | 12:13 am
mood: Cold, tired, shivery... bed!

Well, two more deadlines out of the way. I arrived at the library at 10am on Sunday morning (I'd already been there for most of Saturday) and worked almost solidly for 26 hours. And by almost solidly, I mean only a few 5 minute breaks. Remind me never to do that again.

I ended up wearing a rather interesting outfit by Monday morning. I left the house on Sunday wearing my lovely grey wide-legged trousers with tiny pale pink and lilac pinstripes, my bright pink Uni of Bath zip-up, my lilac pashmina as a scarf and shocking pink elbow-length fingerless gloves. Oh, and pink and purple argyll knee-length socks. That was interesting enough, but by the next morning I was required to tie my top around my waist (you'd think that after nearly 10 years of bleeding monthly I'd get the hang of it) to reveal a brilliantly turquoise strappy top that exposed my (grey - though I do have pink) bra. That required me to wear my pashmina as a shawl -- not the easiest when you're typing frantically. And as I go very pale when I haven't slept (or when I'm losing blood for whatever reason) I must have looked a sight.

I then decided to go shopping in this ensemble and despite the fact I was starting to see things out of the corners of my eyes that weren't there. I found the Oxfam bookshop, and finally managed to pick up my eBay purchases from the Delivery office. I then went home and slept from 14:30 to 8:30 solidly -- 17 and a half hours. That may be a record, even for me.

Still, I'll be missing plenty of sleep the rest of this week. I've been to the theatre tonight -- an English translation of Cavalli's Erismena that was wonderful, and I'm doing First Aid cover for tomorrows (er.. today's now) Snowball (Sports Clubs have an excuse to get dressed up and drink themselves into oblivion), doing a full day of practical, co-ordinating First Aid cover for Thursday's Snowball and then doing a full day of practical. I will be lucky to get 4 hours sleep each night. I'll try and see if I can escape today's duty, or I may be dead by Friday. Pity my poor lab partner.

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Holiday Wishes

Nov. 23rd, 2006 | 01:03 am

I love holiday_wishes!

What a wonderful place! So many new friends! (Welcome by the way. I don't post much, but heh.)

I've had to make so many lists to keep on track with what wishes I'm granting. Although there's still one person who's sent me their address and I've no clue who they are. I am going to have to email back and say, 'Who are you?' I'll just check my memories once more...

My Wishlist

And now I will get on with writing this presentation...

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Picnics

Jul. 3rd, 2006 | 06:29 pm

The weather is beautiful and I have been picnicking like mad before I start work. Henley Regatta, Cliveden and by the Thames and tomorrow I'll be lazing around by Sarah's pool. Well, you've got to make the most of the Great British Summer, haven't you?

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Mmm... Cheesecake

Jun. 3rd, 2006 | 05:32 pm

I think it's a measure of how I feel about sports that I associate fixtures with what I was eating at the time. England v. Brazil last World Cup was Orange Breakfast Muffins and today's England v. Jamaica friendly was lemon and lime cheesecake, which felt somehow rather decadent.

I was curled up on the sofa in Tom's room, in my pyjamas (yes, I know what time the kick-off was!), eating cheesecake and displaying my ignorance. We spent most of the match laughing at Peter Crouch, for one reason and another. He really is very tall. And that robot dance... I can't remember the last time I used the word 'gimpy', but that really calls for it. I'm not even going to mention the penalty.

Still, I'm not as clueless about the World Cup as it seems Ant is: "Oh, is this the World Cup?"

"No, it's a friendly."

"What's a friendly?"

Doesn't the name sort of sum it up?

Anyway, exams are over! I don't think I did very well, but I'm glossing over that. I should have gone out and got drunk last night, but I thought I had a migraine coming on. Thankfully, no migraine has materialised.

I think a World Cup picnic is in order: everyone gets a country and they have to bring food representative of their country. Or football themed food. My gingham picnic tablecloth is sort of like mny overlapping St. George's crosses, if you think about it.

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Cinnamon Scones with Lime syrup

Jun. 1st, 2006 | 01:38 am

Don't expect a recipe here, this was just my little experimentation at 1:30 on the morning of an exam (no I haven't done any revision worth mentioning). I've been living on plain rice for the last few days, as I am abysmally organised when it comes to food shopping. Rather bored with this menu, I wanted something sweet, so I decided to make scones.

Unfortunately, I had no butter. No problem, I improvised a recipe with oil (filched from my housemates). It was all done by eye, chuck some flour (and some cinnamon) and baking powder in a bowl, drizzle some oil in and rub together. An egg beaten in and a splash of milk, and on to a baking tray in a hot oven.

That done, I realised I had no jam. Sugar, however, I had plenty of. So, the obvious solution was a syrup. Add the juice of half a lime and pop in the microwave and you have a gorgeously scented syrup. All well and good, but then I spotted the bottle of vodka on the kitchen table. I have a recipe for white chocolate scones with vodka-soaked strawberries, so I thought: why not? Being a Biochemist, you might have expected me to click that just because the syrup was below the boiling point of water, it wasn't below the boiling point of what is essentially 40% ethanol. But no. Let's just say that I went from 0 to tipsy in 2 seconds flat. Wow, hell of a kick.

The results weren't bad at all. The fat to flour ratio was a little low perhaps and a little more baking powder wouldn't have gone amiss. If I hadn't been so impatient they would have benefited from a little longer in the oven, but I'm not complaining about the taste! Not bad for a made up recipe on the spur of the moment.
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Peppermint Creams: Blindfolded

May. 14th, 2006 | 08:01 pm

I was about to post this to bakebakebake, when I realised there was no baking involved.

I was team-building with our lovely new LINKS (St John Ambulance) committee today, and after the usual bridge-making and role-playing, we were introduced to an exercise I'd never done before (because Nicki just made it up); making peppermint creams with two team members blindfolded and the other giving instructions.

The recipe we were working to is as follows:

125g icing sugar
half an egg white
3 drops peppermint essence

The icing sugar was already weighed out, but the egg was unseparated. I thought it might be a disaster, but my team managed perfectly (once I'd got then into the kitchen). The main difficult was making myself heard above the loud arguing and recriminations of our illustrious chair Allen and vice-chair Steve. (Their team managed all right, except for the distinct lack of peppermint in their peppermint creams). Perhaps a bit more than half the egg white went into our mix, but we ended up with lovely heart-shaped peppermint creams. What's more they tasted delish, even if you could only eat one or two -- so sickeningly sweet!

Of course, if we'd actually done a risk assessment on that exercise, it would never have happened. Good job we never got around to that bit! I've got paperwork coming out of my ears.
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May. 5th, 2006 | 04:38 am

My new picnic hamper has arrived!



Now all I need to do is christen it. Unfortunately, the weather looks to take a turn for the worse. Just bloody typical. Hopefully it will improve again for my birthday.

The menu so far:

Peanut-coated Chicken Drumsticks
Nicoise bread (quail's eggs, green beans, tuna, olives...)
Fritatta with chorizo
Mixed Salad with Vinaigrette
Avocado and Sweetcorn Salsa
Crusty bread
Marinated Olives (or maybe tapenade)
Cheese
Pate
Crackers
Shortbread Tartlets filled with Lemon Cream and Strawberries
Fruit Salad
Dundee Cake or Gingerbread

I'm not sure about fruit salad; I was thinking mango, strawberry, passionfruit and kiwi, which would be gorgeous, but would require bowls.

I've made the drumsticks, a similar fritatta, and shortbread tartlets before for picnics, and they worked wonderfully.

I originally planned to make pan bagnat (tuna, olives, tomato, lettuce in a pressed ciabatta sandwich) but then the nicoise bread sort of replaced it. I'm planning to make the bread in a deep cake tin, in eight segments that will tear easily, removing the need for a bread knife. It was a bit of a toss up between nicoise bread and a bread with tomato and chorizo in, but there's chorizo in the fritatta.
The crusty bread, crackers, cheese, pate and marinated olives I'll buy on the day, from the Fine Cheese Co (Walcot Street), the cheesemongers in Quiet Street (someone and Paxley) and the Guildhall Delicatessen. So there's not too much to cook on the day, provided I'm organised. Like hell.

And then off we'll all toddle to Henrietta Park and gorge ourselves on all the lovely food, washed down by champagne, Buck's Fizz, a little wine, plenty of Pimm's, ginger beer and probably no small amount of beer.

Then we will repair to our respective houses and get ready for the evening, when we will dine somewhere (probably Cafe Uno by the riverside) then off to a club until by birthday has been over for several hours.

I'll get back, sleep for a few hours, until my parents arrive, when I belated realise the kitchen is a tip. We'll go off out to Sunday Lunch (at the Crystal Palace I do believe) and the food will make me slightly less queasy after my alcoholic escapades the night (and day!) before. Then I will try to persuade my parents to try afternoon tea at Sally Lunn's (or maybe the Pump Rooms for a change). And by Sunday evening I will never want to eat again as long as I live. Well, for a few hours.

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Birthday Meme

Apr. 30th, 2006 | 05:34 pm

I'm not quite sure why I'm posting this meme, as I don't usually, but I am busy planning my birthday picnic, so why not? From sollersuk

Enter your birth date and month (e.g May 20 -- Why would Americans do it that way around? It just doesn't make sense. And even some US forms use ddmmyy. Illogical, no?) into the Wikipedia search box.

Give three notable events, two births (excluding your own!) and one death.

May 20

Events:

1690 - England passes the Act of Grace, forgiving followers of Catholic James II.

1892 - The six ton chandelier of the Palais Garnier falls on the crowd resulting in the death of one and the injury of many others.

1932 - Amelia Earhart takes off from Newfoundland to begin the world's first solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic Ocean by a female pilot, landing in Ireland the next day.


I already knew about the publication of the discovery of a viral cause of AIDS (1983) and martial law being declared in China (1989), so I didn't use those.

Births:

1799 - Honoré de Balzac, French novelist (d. 1850)

1970 - Louis Theroux, British television presenter


I already knew Cher (1946), although I can't say it's something I'm proud of.

Deaths:
1503 - Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici, Italian patron of the arts (b. 1463)


I already knew Christopher Columbus (1506) -- apparently he died in poverty.

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