Friday, 27 January 2012


Have returned from a week in the South West and enjoyed seeing my mother, who has continued to improve her mobility and general health, which at 96 is rather good. Even better than one could hope as in September 2010 we were told she would not survive to Easter 2011!!  She has confounded everyone, and is determined to be a recipient of a telegram from the queen.

So this week it is called “musings” as there is not a great deal of content rather more like thoughts and topics are 1) Burns 2) on and off needles and hook, 3) a kindle freebook suggestion, 4)a useless fact

Two burn topics…..1) Burns night when Scots and would be Scots celebrate their national Bard Robert Burns.  Here is a link that gives some background, but for a nice introduction to the festivities Louise of Caithness Craft Collective has started her podcast this week with a Burns celebration and makes nice listening and lately she has been including a whisy tasting session that has proved most interesting and worth catching up on.
For vegetarians and vegans, the “haggis” is no longer a problem as there are excellent vegetarian/vegan haggis sold alongside conventional ones.  In fact see this site about them   and interesting ideas of what to do with any “left over”.  One in four haggis sold by this company is vegetarian which is a figure that surprised me.
If otherwise a homemade vegan haggis is required, then this is a recipe worth considering or vegetarian:

Oh yeah, the second topic of “burns”.  It is now indisputable that I have inherited my mother’s culinary skills.  In one day I managed to burn the bread, and later same day I burned some chocolate I was melting.  So she better watch out that I don’t match her record of 13 rounds of bread burnt whilst making toast one morning.

2)On and off needles and hook

Here is a pic of the baby afghan which pleased me so much I am now doing a full size one for myself! 
I am also embarking on a rather lovely shawlette by Andrea Arbour 
I have got past the boring bit and am on the lacy part now.  Her patterns are good as they afford the knitter both chart and written instructions.
3) kindle book recommendation.
This book is not one that would normally be associated with me, as it is a well known fact to all those who know me that I managed to fail all maths exams I sat.  But this is a fascinating book and worth checking out, if only to astound family and friends with the “the answer is 7” trick.  Have a look on amazon and that is more explicit in the explanation about the book.

4) Useless fact Do you know how many countries there are in the world?  The answer is at the end of this in case you want to think about it.  Yes, Joanne, you will be likely to know because you are Pub Quiz Queen.   I have for ages been  playing words with friends and hanging with friends with Nikki and her Mom Joy who lives in the US. And the messages that accompany the games have given me a good insight into their lives (we had never met prior to playing).  Anyway, Nikki mentioned she was going to Aruba.  “Aruba”??? Never heard of it, so I had to google it.  It then occurred to me I had no idea how many countries there are. It seems to be about 196.  And definition of a country is quite specific but often what one may think is a country is not.  This site explains it

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