Home again, home again, likety split

dream 1

Home again
Home again
Lickety split
Where does the time go?
Where does the time go?

Home in The Village; Baby Peppercorn far, far away. Tired from our cross country journey and quite positive I won’t see the New Year in, well, not consciously anyway!

We had a blessed three weeks with our new grandchild. I was to babysit Petite Fille tonight, but that family came down with sore throats and so cancelled their plans. I shall have to wait to see my “big girl” for another few days.

I returned home to Son who had done a few handyman jobs around the house, and sorted through some kitchen drawers and cupboards to tidy them as a Christmas gift to Mr FD and I. I couldn’t have asked for anything nicer! Our aim is for a simpler life in 2016, as I am sure many are hoping and wishing for as well, so Son’s efforts have been both a gift and a motivation. Tomorrow, tomorrow.

Poor Mr FD was almost strip searched again. Since his knee replacement, he appears to have become a target. I was always the one who was pulled aside for a wanding previously; because mature, grey haired, angle saxon women are sure terrorists. However, now he seems to be their target, despite wearing shorts and parading his knee scar! They had him take his runners and socks off as well.

When we were sitting on the plane, Mr FD made the comment that it was a wonder that they didn’t search his shoe heels for bombs, and I shushed him. Seconds later a little old lady from behind us tottered up the aisle towards the cabin crew and I was sure she was reporting him, but no one ran down to thrown him into the aisle and bind him with plastic ties. No surprise to anyone that Mr FD has the penchant for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.

He also tried to use earphones to listen to music on his iPhone or iPad and didn’t connect properly so three seat rows around us got treated to Mark Knofler as well. I signed to him that I could hear the music and he discussed the issue with me in a loud voice until I ripped the earphones from his ears. Well, I thought it was the earphones he seemed to speak loudly ALL THE TIME.

We had a middle and aisle seat, but no one claimed the window seat, so I slid over and pretended I knew him not. I don’t think I fooled anyone, least of all me.

Does anyone else find airline food extremely salty? Son-in-law the food technologist explained some time ago that salt and sugar get added altenatively until the “flavour” is achieved. Since trying to reduce salt and sugar, I notice the salt in processed foods more and more. I guess the positive is a lessening desire for “bad” food. Notice, I said, lessening, not non-existent!

Son-in-law the engineer, Peppercorn’s Dad, is a man of his own heart. He does not view that a man’s barbecue as equal to the size of his penis. (Should I be discussing my SIL’s penis in public? Or private for that matter!Smallish pun. Ooops double entendre pun!) Anyway his manhood is not invested in the size, or brand of his barbecue.

Hence this is his barbecue:


And this is what he cooked for us last night – included marinated steak, chorizo and nectarine for a start.


One night he created a delicious rolled roast, another night spare ribs to die for. More than a hidden talent! Both our son in laws are superb cooks – we are blessed. Or at least our stomachs are!

The young men in our family are gifts. We won’t speak of the “old” men.

More to share with you, but tomorrow is another year and soon enough. To sleep perchance to dream…



It all comes down to this

FD Christmas 1

The baby is asleep in her crib, her Mama and Papa have gone out to have lunch while they still have baby sitters, Mr FD is napping and I am watching an old version of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer with Burl Ives as the narrator. Life is pretty good.

My children always called the 23rd of December, Christmas Eve Eve, and I think it was probably the day they enjoyed most – so much preparation and anticipation. On Christmas Eve Eve, they would decorate boxes with Christmas drawings and pictures in which to store their gifts after opening. They would also help with making Christmas treats. The best thing was the marathon of Christmas shows on the television that they would dip in and out of all day. Ethel Merman, Burl Ives, the classics. Good times.

This morning I spoke with Petite Fille. We have made a time to face talk on Christmas morning. This is the first Christmas Petite Fille really “gets” Christmas and so her excitement is such a wonder to share. She will spend it with her cousins, my sister’s grandchildren.  Our Son, home minding Augie Dog, will join them as well.

A new Christmas baby, healthy and happy, and a growing, loving family means we are truly blessed.

We wish you a happy Christmas too – filled with the love, peace, serenity and wonder that you deserve. Take care, dear friends, and  remember to have that second helping of pudding. A third helping if you choose. Just enjoy and be grateful.


P.S. My Christmas Fruitcake having survived the interstate plane trip has been voted “the best ever.” Half eaten already!

Sunday entertainment

Sunday Perth 1

Breakfast was served by the new parents; banana and oat pancakes with coconut yoghurt and fruit. If only every morning started so well. All I had to do was cuddle a baby as payment!

Sunday Perth 4

I rolled the rum balls with the help of The Kracken. They have somehow managed to survive hidden in the fridge so far, but not for much longer. They need a day or two to “mature”.

Then we did a tour of Perth bookshops, of which there are many. The independents are hanging on strong in the west, and long may they do so.

perth music


The Millpoint Caffe Bookshop was a favourite with its coffee shop and two musicians playing music. They favourited Stephane Grappelli tunes which gave the long, warm Sunday afternoon the feel of a tea dance from the nineteen thirties. I wouldn’t have been surprised to catch a glimpse of Miss Marple taking tea in a corner.

Oh, and we met this couple on the road. We gave them right of way.

Sunday Perth 2

Peppercorn, hops and a foodie tour

Scientific field research has proven that it is difficult to write a blog post when a two week old baby is using you as her bed. Peppercorn is of the firm opinion that a nanna nap means that she naps ON Nanna.

Peppercorn is proving to be the perfect baby, sleeping her days away. Unzipping her “wombie” or sheep’s wool sleep swaddle, is like switching her to on. Instantly she awakens, wiggles and will give her consent to a feed. Then it is poo time, or rather poo time with Daddy as he always seems to get that end of the process, and she resettles into sleep. We all have fingers crossed that the Christmas gremlins don’t steal her to replace with evil baby girl.

Grandma and Grandpa have managed a few outings when not needed to be an improvised crib.

Saturday was to the Feral Brewing for lunch and a tasting tray of very feral beer. I am not a beer drinking so my choice was the lightest beer, feral white – number 1, and Mr FD had his pick of the others. We didn’t buy any to take home and glasses four and five were largely untouched.

feral 1

feral 2


We did enjoy the cheese platter and the lamb on flat bread with pomegranate salad.

feral 3

feral 4

Afterwards we did the tourist drive and visited The Honey Shop, The Cheese Barrel and stopped off at Yahava Koffeworks where Mr FD asked if they stocked the coffee beans rescued from monkey poo. He was politely told that we could not afford to buy it and they could not afford to stock it. Consider yourself put in your place! He never asked to buy it; well, not in my hearing anyway!

Feral 5

Mr FD somehow made time for his version of the Victorian Tourism “Run Rabbit Run” ad in the vineyard. He blamed his ungainly gait on his knee replacement. I made no comment but my brain was pinging with plenty of replies. Sometimes the inside words need to be just that…inside.

feral 6

Cookies and milk

dancing housewife

My mission for the day, which I chose to accept, was to bake lactation cookies. I had never heard of them either, but apparently they assist in mother’s milk supplies.

The secret ingredient is brewers yeast. Once upon a time this could be purchased at the local supermarket, but our failure to source it yesterday confirmed that the supermarket chain no longer stocked home brew supplies now that they owned a  liquor chain outlet. Wonder why?

Mr Daughter2, the new Daddy, went out on a hunting excursion and was almost lost to the wildes of the Home Brew Store until he remembered his quest and returned with sachets of brewers yeast. The store owner had gifted them to him when she had heard the reason for his quest.

So Grandma, that’s me in this tale, sallied forth into the kitchen and created lactation cookies. Oh, it was a jolly time, with many a joke about  “we mustn’t allow the men folk to eat our cookies, or heavens knows what might happen to them!”

Daughter2 wondered aloud what might happen to her if they were wildly successful. I said we would make a podcast for YouTube and create a lactation cookie empire.

Three trays of cookies were baking in the oven when for amusement I reread the recipe and realised that one ingredient was missing. The super duper secret ingredient – the brewer’s yeast.  Too late to whip the trays from the oven and add the ingredient, I thought of saying nothing and hoping the placebo effect would do its task, but my sharp intake of breath informed Mr D2 standing nearby, that something was amiss. I could have lied, but had to confess. He manfully offered to eat the evidence. What a hero!

I set too and made a second batch. Trays cooling from the oven, I started to clean the kitchen after admitting my error to Daughter2, who was not surprised at her mother’s antics, and to be honest would probably have been surprised had I indeed read the recipe correctly first time around. She remembered too well the great mustard fiasco of year 12.

As evidence that the brewers yeast was now ensconced within the cookie, I wafted the 5g sachet under her nose.

“Wow, how convenient that it was exactly one sachet that the cookies needed,” she declared, impressed.


Close inspection of the recipe stated that 2 TABLESPOONS of brewer’s yeast was required. I had used a mere 1 teaspoon.

We are still relying on the placebo effect.




a good journey is worth retracing

Dinner back on the beach, at sunset.

Predinner drinks - mine was a Pimm's

Predinner drinks – mine was a Pimm’s



Dinner 3

An arrogant little wine chilling for tomorrow. The succulent prop was found lying on the path outside the beach restaurant, so it came home to be divided into two patio pots for Daughter2. Never let a free plant go by.

Baby update: Peppercorn is progressing well, putting on weight every day. Her Mum has blood pressure issues and so they are still in hospital. Might be home tomorrow..or the next day.