Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Seasons new homewares shop

Seasons of Skerries, known for their wholesome, home-cooked food and the use of local, in-season produce, have extended their premises with a homewares shop and a new dining area overlooking the Skerries Islands, scheduled for official opening on Thursday, 28th April at 7:30pm.

"Signature dishes include their Creole French Toast with orange & lime syrup for breakfast, Butternut Squash & Parmesan Soup, Sweet Potato Patties and Fish Cakes with basil sauce for lunch and their delicious filled Meringues and Melting Moments."
They very kindly asked me whether I'd speak at the event. I can't make it, and am sad to be missing their Mad Hatters Tea Party with wine and finger food, jazz music by Neil McMahon and games such as Ice the Cupcake, Fold the Napkin (men only contest), Know Your Herbs and more. But perhaps you can join the party on Thursday? Admission is free, if you care to flaunt your knowledge of herbs, and would you go into a small stripe-admiring trance on my behalf?

"Themed gastronomic events and a host of social activity clubs will feature on this year’s calendar. These clubs will include, amongst others, a Healthy Eating Club, an Organic Gardening Club and a Home Crafts Club."
Skerries, where my father grew up and I spent many happy holidays bashing my grandmother's piano, is a lovely seaside town, richly deserving of pretty homewares and enhanced napkin-folding knowledge. I'll be along as soon as possible to try the Creole French Toast and check out the new homewares. Good luck, Mel and Brendan Connors of Seasons.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

dum di dum di dum

When one gets to be my age and firmly entrenched in the project management of life, pottering emerges as a significant hobby. This encompasses light thinking and moving things from A to B to see how they look. Traditionally undertaken in broderie anglaise with a flower in one's hair, it's a valuable antidote to opinion and noise.

Youngsters will raise an eyebrow at me here, but you wait and see: there'll come a day when having a quiet rummage through your fabric swatches is as satisfying as the first breath of fresh air when you leave a nightclub at 3 in the morning, or hopping on the next plane to wherever the next plane happens to be going.  By then you'll have determined whether Johnny is The One and also sorted out global oppression and it'll be time to take a lively interest in heaps of beautifully folded white bedlinen, while still of course being fabulous.

It's good to be back home in Jellystone Park for a while after a spell of apartment living. You try to potter in a rental apartment and there's no point having a happy ponder about what shade to paint the cupboards as they're not your cupboards and they are the wrong sort of cupboard anyhow. And the light thinking is defeated by the TV in the kitchen that makes Pink and Blue Daughters giddy and and drives me to campari & soda with a delicate twist of lime and a futile cocktail umbrella.  No wonder the modern world has a headache and needs calming balms and pricey carrot elixirs.

And I have a pottering type of problem, viz: I've rather taken to Glenilen Farm's Raspberry Pannacotta, but I no longer buy them because of my stockpile of the little glass ramekins in which they are sold. I can't throw the ramekins away as that sort of wanton behaviour just isn't in me, nor can I think of anything to do with them beyond boring old candle-holders or baking individual things that would involve Effort.  Can you suggest anything that wouldn't make young people laugh cruelly at me?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

a zealous pursuit of displacement activities

It's a sure sign that someone has an important piece of work with an impending deadline on the go when they start fiddling about with Blogger. I've been happily pottering with the following:

1. The new Blogger 'Popular Posts' feature, which shows the most read posts of the past week (on the sidebar to your right). It tends to display recent posts, as you'd expect, but it's good to see an occasional blast from the past rocketing senselessly up the chart.

2. The new views. The flipcard view, my favourite, is rather like meeting oneself unexpectedly in the corridor and being given too detailed a response to a polite 'how have you been?'

3. I've started replacing the blog list I mistakenly deleted a year ago. Your new post will now be available to me the joyful instant it is published. It'll also be much easier for me to click back in later to see what your sweet commentators have said and indeed undertake a second reading, the better to appreciate your more complex themes and delicate nuances, perhaps even spot a faint, initially overlooked foreshadowing of a planned repotting of your herbs.

Monday, April 11, 2011

You're a star!!!!

I was backward when it came to bringing up the children. It wasn't until Pink Daughter went to nursery school that I learned about stickers. If a child is very good, their homecoming sticker says 'very good!!' or 'you're a star!!' or 'excellent!!' but if they misbehave badly and expulsion is on the cards they come home with 'very good!' or 'you're a star!' or 'excellent!' instead. Should there be something challenging to be undertaken, such as eating a vegetable, they will do so for a sticker, but if it's cabbage the sticker will have to glow in the dark.

[Scottish Husband leaves an encouraging note]

So, ever eager to be a Woman of my Time, I have bought some stickers. A whole book of them. More than 300! Three stickers each if everyone stays quiet while dearest Mamma dashes off a blog post.


I'll also be sticking them onto the envelope when I write to you so that your postie will realise you are a person of consequence, and of course I'll adorn your giveaway win package with them. I sure wish I could add them to comments. Excellent dining-room makeover!! Incredible pigeon pie!  Exquisite finer feeling on matters of the heart! You're a star!!!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

now even prettier far west

Ever on the lookout for ways to overcome my disinterest in the cutting edge of technology, Scottish Husband showed me the range of browser themes for Google Chrome, including Cath Kidston, Kate Spade, Vivienne Westwood, Emma Bridgewater and many more. I've given the Cath Kidston version a shot so that my browser experience will be in harmony with our imagined graceful lives.

[PFW in the Cath Kidston themed browser]

Important stuff, you rightly remark. 

My friend Annie mentioned that American readers will think that 'Mise' is pronounced 'm-eyes,' or worse still, like more than one mouse. I'd be grateful if you could amend your mental pronunciation to the Irish 'mi-sha,' and also send me all your money for my collection. I'm saving up for a Cath Kidston themed six lane motorway with matching toll plaza.  

Friday, April 1, 2011

if you don't blog, you don't exist

Jaboopee was telling me the other day that if you don't blog, you don't exist. It must be true. After two weeks of no posting here, the viewing figures start to decline and TV stations worldwide get in touch to cancel my appearance on their showcase hard-hitting primetime thinking slot, as the 2005 Beauty Queen of Athlone is scheduled to appear instead. What a let down.

But my silence is with good reason: I'm not among my own lifestyle accoutrements. While my brother looks after my dear, dear sofas, I'm living in an apartment for the first time since I was a single woman. I don't think apartments have changed, but I have. 'Italian marble,' says the brochure, but it doesn't mention that the appliances nearly work. Just enough so that they are not actually broken, merely ineffectual. Except the toaster, which toasts magnificently.

There was a time when I wouldn't have cared, being out on the town and all. Casapinka and I put up with genteel pelmetted curtains and the wrong kind of tumble-dryer for years in those carefree days in Dublin. But here, once the appeal of the lift wears off, the children start wondering where to employ their superpowers (invisibility, rocket-boosters, fire-breathing). How much fun for the parent, you ask me, is an urban playground? None, upon the second visit. Ditto the library. Ditto Murphy's ice cream shop, though their sea salt ice cream is delicious.

We miss our garden and its snails and daisies and I miss my oilcloth tablecloth. Somewhere during these seven married years I have become Set In My Ways and will have to decline the post of Irish Ambassador to Borneo when next it comes up, even if the roofless embassy there has an equally magnificent toaster that pops sky-high and scares the starlings. Forgive me, Borneo, if your embassies have roofs; Wikipedia wasn't clear on the matter.
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