Tag Archives: balance

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For the first time in months, this weekend my husband and I have nothing that we have to be doing.  This morning we did our usual weekend recce over breakfast, discussing what must be done over the next two days and both felt as if we’re somehow forgetting something vital.  We’re not.  Our time is our own.  In my head the tumbleweed is rolling across the open prairies and you know what?  It’s a nice feeling.

I have this theory that constantly being idle is actually bad for the spirit.  On the other hand I can confirm that constantly having something to do is equally bad.   I’m glad that we can get back to the happy medium.  Today will be the normality of a trip to the pet supply shop for cat bics and blob, followed by, who knows?  Maybe a trip to the beach for a ‘Mr Whippy’ from the ice cream van.  Ah…normality.  I like normality.

0232, Bike Ride

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Filed under Home, modern life

The Yin and Yang balance

YinYangThere is a yin and yang balance to life, if you choose to look for it.  Just lately I’ve been in pain – a finger joint on my left hand has finally succumbed to arthritis.  It’s been on the move for the last year or more, the joint slowly swelling, but in the last week has begun to painfully throb. 

Under the weather

Under the weather

Do you have arthritis?  If not, count yourself lucky.  Rather unfairly at my age, I think, I now have two points in my body that are affected: in my left foot – the searing arthritic pain of which is currently on several years’ sabbatical, thank the Lord (but the effect of which has left me with a misshapen foot), and now my left hand.  What is particularly frustratring me is that it would be my left hand, wouldn’t it?  That’s my fully functioning hand.  If it was my right hand it would rarely be used and so the swollen joint wouldn’t be accidentally and continually knocked, and I wouldn’t be noticing how it now hurts every time I even bend my fingers (which, in the case of my left hand is, not surprisingly, very often). 

Still, I count myself lucky that it’s merely a finger joint and not a hip or an entire arm that is in arthritic agony (that would be a real stinker).  

I’d just managed to again painfully bash my hand against the furniture while cleaning yesterday when the phone rang.  The caller purported to be from the company that I tend to buy my shoes from.   (I say ‘purported’ because I don’t see Shoe shoppinga scam here but you never can tell nowadays) . They said that as a subscriber to their newsletter my name had been entered into a competition to win shoes for the next year and that my name had been drawn as the winner. Winging its’ way to me shortly via Recorded Delivery will be hundreds of Pounds worth of vouchers to cover shoes for every season – from January through to December.  How cool is that?  Of course I am not a shoe fettishist like other members of my family, and it just so happens that I have only just bought enough shoes to last me for the next year (at least) but, hey, I’m not complaining!  I’m on the winning side!  I was seriously thinking that this year would be marked only by one ‘money out’ situation after another yet the other day I won £25 on the Premium Bonds [woohoo] and now I’ve won a whole load of shoe vouchers.  Could this be a turn in the financial tide?  That would be nice.

So there.  The yin and the yang balance at work:  I am in physical pain but at least I’ll have plenty of pretty new shoes to distract me and with my current winning streak, who knows?  Perhaps I’m in line for a big lottery win!

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Filed under health, Home

Cooking dilemmas: Too salty / too sweet

What now?!Getting the right balance of flavours in food can sometimes be tricky.  If you’re reducing any liquid on the hob, bear in mind that flavours will be intensified so be careful about how much salt you add to begin with.  To state the obvious : It’s easier to add more after reduction than it is to take away! 

GRAVY: 

Be careful particularly when making gravy  The juices left at the bottom of your roasting pan often have intense flavour, including saltiness, so extra seasoning is rarely necessary.  You may be tempted to reach for the wine (for the pan – not you!) in order to balance things out.  Don’t.  Wine tends to further emphasise saltiness. In the case of over-salted gravy, add more stock or water and some parsley to absorb the salt.  If you find your gravy then lacks flavour add one of the following: a little redcurrant jelly, butter, a tablespoon of medium or sweet sherry or even a small piece of stock cube (because commercially made stock cubes are, in themselves, salty)!

OTHER FOODS:

All may not be lost and depending on what you’re preparing, you have a few options: 

For soups and stews add a raw potato and continue to cook for about 15 minutes.  As the potato cooks it will absorb some of the salt and you can remove it at the end.  

White bread-crumbs, cream and parsley will all help mask too much salt.

For French dressing or any sauce that you think could take a hint of sweetness, adding a little sugar will balance out the flavours.

Conversely, if you have made a food too sweet and you think it can take it, add a pinch of salt or a dash of vinegar.

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Filed under Christmas Countdown, General house tips, What's Cooking?