Thursday, 30 October 2008

Its free!

Oh I love a bargain. And I love free stuff even more than cheap stuff. For example I love the crappy pens you get from Cancer research and the Red Cross (sometimes with postcards) that are meant to emotionally blackmail you into giving them money. I am immune to that cheap trick.

But I am not immune to the clever ways of shop assistants. I went into a store on Saturday to ask about their moisturisers, I was willing to part with some cash within reason. I left with an appointment with a 'skin specialist' who will assess my skin and then probably try (and even more probably succeed) to sell me not just a moisturiser but also a scrub, some soap stuff, some other creams and maybe some treatments as well. The appointment is complimentary so I am feeling I am getting something for free and am very happy. Will check wallet after visit to validate that feeling.

My friend H got a complimentary Laser treatment from her dermatologist and of course said yes not thinking any more about it or looking into what it actuall means. When she arrived at the clinic a lady was leaving and was asked by the staff if she wanted to book another appointment; she said 'No, I have finished this set of treatments and dont want to go through this again.' Hmmm...

H then got taken into a room and the handmaid/ nurse / skin lady in waiting told her she would put some local anasthetic on her face and let it start working for 10 minutes before the treatment started, to minimise the pain. Hmmm....

Finally Mr Dermatologist arrives and starts the process. H was told it would feel like being pinged on the face with rubber bands. She told me it was not pleasant. Especially not on the edges where the helper had missed a bit with the cream. At the end she was asked if she wanted to book a next session. She wisely declined.

I am hoping my skin assessment on Saturday will turn out to be as relaxing and glam as I have imagined it in my head and if I see anyone with rubber bands looking for a victim to ping in the face I shall leave.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Kodak moment

While I had a great weekend in general and it was lovely seeing J and G the main memory I am going to take with me is probably going to be Mark Foster taking his top off as he got voted out of Strictly Come Dancing. There is a God and It might well be a woman.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Sookie and the Hoosiers

Collected book 5 and 6 of the Sookie Stackhouse books yesterday but with Johanna here I couldnt just read all weekend. Instead we met with the Norwegian girls and had an English wine tasting session, Jo and I then went to see the Hoosiers. 2/3 of the audience were dressed up, a lot of cops and robbers. A good concert.

But of course I couldnt help myself but had to start book 5. And of course I couldnt stop once I had started, so I finished that one late last night (helped by the clocks changing, so I got an hour back). And today after I had left Johanna at the station I started the 6th and I have now finished that one too. Want more. But dont want hard back. So hard to wait. These books are better than chocolate.

Thursday, 23 October 2008


I am not used to studying but have spent the whole week trying to cram like a student at exam time. I am not enjoying it but am glad it paid off for test 1 of 2. Tomorrow is test 2 of 2 and I hope I pass. If I dont I shall mope. Like a teenager being told off.

The test is 3 hours, the result will come in maybe 3 weeks. In the mean time I shall go back to work all eager to implement what I have learned. I reccon by the time I get the results I will have forgotten all about it.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Book case orderliness

Ordered two but dont want to have hardbacks mixed with paperbacks so will have to be patient and wait. I am not keen on waiting for books. And I will have to buy the first book as I want the whole series... And now I am thinking they might be nice as audiobooks too. Not to mention seeing the tv series with Alexander Skarsgard (looking forward to when they get to the 4th book...)

New Love, Old Love

EL lent me a book for the flight home and I am addicted. I went into town and got three more in the series yesterday, they are all finished by now. I now need to order the remaining four books for next weekend. I also found a new Aveda hairdresser in town! Got complimentary neck and scalp massage as well as a lovely back massage from the chair during hair wash. Nice.

And its satsuma season! At last. Love satsumases. And JD is home this weekend. I am cooking us a stew in my new Le Creuset pan (white, 26cm in diameter, lovely).

Monday, 13 October 2008

Brown cheese and smelly fish

Oslo was lovely, we had a great weekend experiencing Oslo in the sunshine. We spent Saturday morning sightseeing and then went to the farmers market on Karl Johan to try out local specialities. I can confirm we like far i kal (lamb / cabbage stew) but not rakfisk (fermented herring). JD also got to try cloudberries (unimpressed), brown goats cheese (ok), local apples (lovely) and plums in vanilla sugar syrup (divine).

In the evening we tried out the local beer from the Oslo Microbrewery and I still only like pale tasteless lager (Oslo Pils) but JD loved loved loved their IPA.

We spent a lazy Sunday walking around on the Opera house as well as around the fort in the middle of town before getting on the train for the 7 hour journey home. Its nice to go by train. We had a lovely time. But the food on the Chinese trains are about 50 times better than on Swedish train, as is the service.

Friday, 10 October 2008


BTW the photos from our week in the summer house are now on flickr.


I am in Oslo visiting Gunnhild. Its autumnal, grey outside but all the trees have vibrant yellow leaves and some orangey red ones too. We have just had lunch with Alex, very civilised. I do find it amasing that I havent been able to meet up with him in Stockholm in the 7 months I have been visiting once a month but I go to Oslo for 3 days and he is here too.

JD will arrive tonight and tomorrow we are heading to the Kontiki museum and an outdoor area above the city, by Holmenkollen. All very civilised. But will probably ruin us as Norway quite expensive.

Sunday we travel home by train, 1st class!! Only because I booked them so so early that the price was just £30 each. It will take most of the day though as its the milk train. But I have a table cloth to embroider and 'The Truth' by Mr Pratchett on my ipod.

Monday, 6 October 2008

Cooking with cheese

OK, I have quite a lot of cheese left over from Sat night. While this isnt an issue in itself I do feel I should cook with the cheese so I am trying to find recepies for my three cheeses.

Cabrales - found this salad recepie that I think will be nice. Not sure what arugula is so am going to use spinach.

Stinking Bishop - well how about mushroom and cheese filled peppers? Or I might just go lazy and have soup with Stinking Bishop cheese on toast...

Brie de Meaux - am thinking this one I can munch on while cooking the above two recepies. Maybe on a slice of the nice dark bread I baked yesterday.

Saturday, 4 October 2008


Went to Lewes with B today. Shopping in all the antique stores, farmers market and the cheese shop. I got no antiques, some bread and game steaks at the farmers market but it was the cheese shop that got most of my money.

I am having a Ploughmans lunch for dinner. I have some brie de meaux, some stinking bishop and this fanstastically strong blue cheese (cabrale). And a little chicken liver pate.

Walking around town we kept wondering why everyone was smelling so badly, and it turned out it was we that were the smelly ones. B thought she might have an old used baby diaper stuck to her jacket, but it was just the cheese.

And I reccon if you have flatulence problems and a date coming for dinner your best bet is just getting some stinking bishop to cover any embarassing smells.

Red wine and cheese is perfect for a windy night.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Never gonna give you up!

GO and vote for Rick for Best Ever on the MTV awards!

Here is the link to the voting page:

And if you wonder what I am on about, read here:

Wednesday, 1 October 2008


Am getting into knitting. Got inspired just before my week off and got some wool and started on a tube in mohair, v easy but fun. Realised when done that its too itchy to wear so charity will probably get that one... Found a wool shop in Enkoping and got some more wool and made a shawl with it. Love wool shops in small towns. Amazing that they can stay open.

But anyway, as I a while back had a similar phase I have quite a lot of wool that I got off ebay so I am now looking for another project. Am thinking somethign relatively straight forward, nothing with sleeves but ideally something I can actually use. But needs to be an easy and forgiving pattern as I knit terribly unevenly.

Have decided on a vest. Will let you know how it goes.