This week was quite productive, filled with useful fun things like food projects, and useful boring things like appointments.

Friday, 19th August

Yummy banana bread

A rainy day, so I spent some of the time making banana bread. They’re deliciously naughty with some slops of black rum! One batch also had walnuts, the other had ginger.

My cat also recognised the rainy weather, so this time she spent the day in many (mostly) curled up positions on the dog bed

Saturday, 20th August

Hot Pepper Jelly made using peppers from my parents' veg garden

Another afternoon in the kitchen, this time making hot pepper jelly.

Then went fishing in the evening, just around sunset. We caught some silk snappers and a sailor’s choice. They’re really good to eat as fish (duh…) or in fish pie. They freeze well for eating though out the year, and the cats like the scarps, so not a single morsel is wasted!

[small image in case anyone’s offended]

Silk Snappers & a Sailor's Choice

Sunday, 21st August

Some photos of live fish this time! They were poking about some sea urchin shells and were more interested in those than the giant lumbering through their watery home (me). Some must have liked the reflections on my lens, and were looking intently into the camera in a quizzical kind of way!

Curious live fish!

Monday, 22nd August

Today I made labels for the hot pepper jelly I’d made earlier at the weekend. My mother commented while looking over my shoulder at my laptop that the labels looked awfully formal, and couldn’t they be more fun? I decided that cutting the pink paper into a giant doodle, gluing it to the yellow and printing straight onto it was  a good way of adding some fun into the labels, while keeping the font and layout which I’d already worked on.

'Fun' Labels

That was a success, and my dad asked me to make similar doodle labels for his marmalade:

Doodle cut labels

Tuesday, 23rd August

A productive day of appointments/meetings, though no photos: doctor’s appointment, with a locum who I was assured was ‘super duper’, though she’d only vaguely heard off the word mirtazapine, and subsequently spelt it wrong anyway on the prescription. She also didn’t want to be drawn on when I could begin tapering off the dosage, just fobbing me off with, ‘well you know some people need to continue to take it just as diabetics take insulin’. Where I’m from doesn’t do mz’pine very well: the pharmacy only had half of what I needed and had the order the rest in. Anyway, I ended up with all of the right medication, eventually.

The second meeting was more exciting: I went back to the landscape architecture office I’ve worked in during previous summers. There’s a freeze on all jobs at the moment, which I was already aware of, but they’re hopeful they’ll be able to advertise an assistant position by December. It’s nice to know I may be able to apply for that if my job hunt in the UK during the autumn isn’t fruitful.

Wednesday, 24th August

Glimpse of sea from the road

Went into town today with my parents to sign some lawyer papers. I’m rarely in a car being driven, so tried taking a couple of photos of the water. It’s times like this when you notice how many bushes, trees and houses actually block the view! (The lawyer trip was to sign the transferal of ownership for a sliver of land from my grandfather to his children and grandchildren. It’s just beginning to dawn on me that I actually (part) own a tiny piece of this Earth…kind of cool!)

Thursday, 25th August

Cut (extra points if you can actually tell!) & Highlighted hair

Went to the hairdressers, had hair cut and highlighted. Should do me for another year (and it had better, as it took [3 hrs])! Hairdresser said all the right things, was very impressed my hair looked as good as it did, considering the last time it was cut was by her, last summer. I guess she was pleased that at least my lack of showing up at her salon wasn’t because I’d defected elsewhere!


How about an illustrated guide to making hot pepper jelly?

1. Grow some hot pepper plants. About 3 plants is enough. These are 'Super Chilis'

2. Collect about 40 hot peppers.

3. Chop 1/2 cup of hot peppers

4. Also chop 2 small sweet green peppers (1 1/4 cups) and 3/4 red onion, put everything into a big saucepan

5. Add 2 cups apple cider vinegar

6. Stir in 6 1/2 cups sugar and 1 packet pectin, then bring to the boil for 1 minute

7. Once mixture begins to cool and the bits don't immediately float to the top when stirred, pour into sterilised jars. Done & Enjoy!