October has been a month of new routines, desperately hoping nobody would get ill and longing for a holiday breather. The girls’ sleep got all messed up and I got tired and frustrated with things and I’ve been distracting as a coping mechanism without realising it. I don’t feel like I have the words for this weird malaise quite yet but I am trying. It didn’t help that the clock change a week ago means that the sun now goes down around 5 pm and it’s making me feel quite depressed. Ugh, I hate this time of year.
What I’m Watching
Regular shows: Once Upon a Time, Dr Who, Arrow. And Castle is back so we’ve started season 4.
Films: Sightseers – it’s a tale of murder in the Lake District. I guess it counts as a black comedy but I tell you, it totally freaked me out, as much for how gory it was as for how casually evil yet disturbingly banal the characters were even in their mental disturbance. I’m never going on a caravan holiday, ever.
What I’m Reading
I finished Written in My Own Heart’s Blood (Outlander) and A Dance With Dragons: Part 2 After the Feast and loved both so much! You can read my reviews on Goodreads.
What I’m NOT Reading
It’s not that I don’t want to, honest. I’m that overwhelmed with it.
What I’m Listening To
In the charts: I fell in love with Say Something by A Great Big World. It’s a bit of a predictable choice for me, what with all the nice piano, clear harmonisation, pretty tune and the heavy dose of melancholy. I had no idea Christina Aguilera was singing until I saw the video, and omg is she over-acting.
The bigger surprise has been how much I have liked All About That Bass by Meghan Trainor. I like the strong lyrics and it’s ever so catchy.
Badgerman has been playing a lot of Royal Blood lately and I generally think he has interesting and eclectic taste (when he’s not listening to Mastodon – that’s not really my thing). Rock seems to be enjoying a revival of sorts and I like it. Little Monster is wonderful.
Unfortunately, for all the hype, I couldn’t get past the first track from shameless ad-whore U2‘s new album. They either need to reinvent themselves musically or come to terms with not being big news anymore, either way, it sounded like U2 and yeah, meh.
I listened to the new Coldplay album and although I like a couple of tracks, I’m not bowled away either.
What I’ve Been Doing
– The nearly-new sale I attended was a complete wash-out. For some reason, the unused bottles of talcum powder went in a flash, and I sold maybe three other items and that’s it. Considering how much time and effort went into preparing for the event, it was not good value for money. I made back what I’d put out for the table and then maybe another £15, and promptly spent half of that on a Cinderella Barbie for Little Girl. I came home knackered but still determined to get rid of all my baby clothes somehow. Ebay here I come!
– I have never celebrated Hallowe’en; it didn’t exist in its current form in France when I was growing up and it’s only recently that the practice of trick or treating has become popular in the UK but for the last three years, we have tried to develop some basic pumpkin-carving skills. This year, to please Little Girl, I went for Hello Kitty, which came out great, although Badgerman later admitted to being surprised at my success because he initially thought I had shot well over my capabilities and was never going to manage anything decent. Thanks for the vote of confidence then…
– For a true Hallowe’en fright, I give you my attempt at a Roast Pumpkin Cheese Fondue as I threatened to do last month. I overbaked the pumpkin; it burnt, leaked and caved in a bit on the side and looked quite shocking, as the photo below can attest, but it tasted like heaven. It’s honestly the easiest thing to make. A 1.5 kg emptied pumpkin will take about 1 hr to cook in the oven first at 180C, then layer all your ingredients in the cavity (300 g grated cheese, 2 tbsp white wine, 2 tbsp creme fraiche and a chopped shallot) and roast for another 30 mins. You can’t go wrong. Unless you’re me.
I also made a Lancashire Hotpot, which looked and tasted amazing but yeah, again, I forgot to take a pic of the inside. I’ll share this recipe another time for sure because lamb stew is The Daddy.
At Home On The Blog
– This month’s been very slight on posts. I battled with S.A.D. and general tiredness and couldn’t get the resolve to be productive and write anything. Somehow it ended up being a food month!
– I did share a typically French recipe for a tasty cheese-free alternative to pizza that ought to please big and small people of all ages. And you can always put cheese on top if you really must.
– The Indian food experiment finally took off. We were late getting it started so both the September Tandoori Night and the October Butter Chicken Night happened in October. No one complained.
So that’s what I’ve been doing this month. Be sure to check out all the other entries over on Leigh Kramer’s website.
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