Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Lazy Days

Holidays From Everything

Bank holidays and public holidays are always such a busy time with families! It seems impossible to grab a few minutes to craft and even more impossible to grab an hour to blog. So just a few photos to show you what has been happening in my little corner of the world this weekend.

View of our secluded 24 seat restaurant during the day
 Trip Advisor says "very tiny like someones front room"!

We had a lovely meal at Meejana a little Lebanese restaurant, cafe and deli in Weybridge Surrey. It was my first taste of Lebanese food and I just loved it and really wanted to go back the following day as it was so good.  The food was excellent, fresh and unusual with amazing tastes. The menu was full of things I had never heard of ... I tried several and loved them all!  Do go if you live nearby.

The family and grandchildren came for a special dinner at our home ... they are mostly vegetarian so I cooked a vegetarian paella and also a fish version for the people who cannot do without meat or fish (Mr Whizz Kid specifically!) I used the Jamie Oliver recipe, which is fairly simple and always turns out well. I served it with garlic bread and it was a simple and easy meal to prepare for a large number. We followed it with a delicious chocolate gateau and strawberries and cream.


Fish Version
Olive oil
Garlic clove
1 Chopped onion
Paella rice
1 Red pepper
2 Chopped tomatoes
Half bottle white wine
Handful large prawns
Handful small prawns
Handful mussels
Half pound or 400 grams chicken fillets
Half pound or 400 grams white fish
Small chorizo sausage
1 Stock cube
Handful of peas
Saffron strands

Ingredients and Method:

Fry chopped onion and garlic in a little olive oil
Add paella rice and fry for a few minutes
Add chopped chicken and fry until lightly browned
Add chorizo at this point and fry a little to release the oils
Put saffron and stock cube in a mug and cover with boiling water
Pour a little wine into the paella and stir
Add the wine in small amounts until reduced
Now add the stock cube mixture and saffron through a sieve to leave saffron strands behind
When the rice is cooked add the peas and the white cubed fish
Put the chopped tomato and prawns and mussels into the pan and warm through for a few more minutes
Decorate with chopped herbs and serve

 Vegetarian Version

Ingredients and Method:

Similar but miss out the chorizo, fish and chicken and add various vegetables including mange tout, sweetcorn, aubergine and mushrooms (or anything else available in the fridge)
Decorate with chopped herbs and serve

We All Ate Too Much Chocolate!

Marks and Spencer eggs were wonderful this year -  the variety was amazing and I especially liked the Royal Ducknesses. The children preferred the weird ones.

Click on image to enlarge it.
Kids liked these

Adults liked these - It is a very sunny day!
A very special treat from Mr Whizz Kid in here ...

Favourite truffles (he will eat them all!)

Handmade gifts made by the grandchildren - yummy!

Bachmanns Patisserie  is a wonderful local cake shop, which is so hard to resist. It is very expensive so we only use it for special occassions. We ate one of their amazing gateau for puddings when the family came and another the following day when more family came for tea ... I think they may all be finished before the day is out as more friends and family are coming for tea today.

Note: Mr Whizz Kids eats all the cakes, biscuits and chocolates he can lay his hands on as I do not like sweet food at all (yet he still buys me chocolates -  I wonder why?)!!

The Garden Blossomed!

The Amarylis bloomed in the conservatory
The Parsley shot up
Spring bulbs arrive in the garden
Amazing how one day of sun and a day of rain can transform the landscape
Even the wild area has some flowers
I love the blue of these Muscari Grapes
The Orange Blossom hedge looks so pretty now

The Rosemary revived

I am so enjoying this spring!

Packhouse Antiques

One of the wonderful room settings

We paid a visit to  Packhouse Antiques  in Farnham Surrey looking for some new furniture and some pretty lamps. It was packed! The experience was certainly not one for the faint hearted. I love this place usually as it is full of weird and wonderful things from every era but this Easter excursion was dreadful. It was a rainy day so presumably there were limited things to do in the area and it seemed to me that the whole of the population were searching for interesting items along with us in Farnham.

Vintage kitchen wares

Accessories and gifts

Such pretty things

Sadly we could not agree on any furniture although I loved some pretty bedside cabinets and Mr Whizz Kid liked an expensive vase ... next time we may be able to see more clearly without the crowds jostling us.

Finally ... I heard the most amazing play on Radio 4 over Easter and was totally wowed by it ...

John Peels Shed  is something anyone who has a love of radio and music must listen to  ...  please take the time to 'listen again' (available until April 15th by clicking the above link) or if you are in an appropriate place do go and see this wonderful, amusing, evocative reading of the history of music and radio, which was so obviously enjoyed in the days of John Peel's radio days. John Osborne is a genius!


  1. That's some great kind of busy - shame about the crowds though x

  2. Sounds like a fab Easter weekend, we had a lovely lazy day, just lovely to have both girls home and not working! the kitchen is in disaray (!) still, and the contents of most of the cupboards in the dining room. So no fancy meal, but we did manage to clear it for a nice meal for Lisa's 21st on the 5th!

  3. no such thing as too much chocolate, love the amarylis, thank you for your good thoughts ....tina

  4. *sigh* you always eat so well lol Love the way your garden's turning out, and that kitchen wares pic!

  5. Wow! You've been busy! The pics of the dishes you cooked look delicious. Oh, that was sweet of the grandchildren to make you hand made gifts. That Amaryllis is absolutely beautiful. I've never been into Amaryllis but that one may have changed my mind! Hope you get to go shopping again soon without the jostling crowd (I can't think clearly in a crowd like that either). :-)


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