Alexander McQueen, Savage Beauty, V & A.

What to say about this exhibition.  It is the most wonderful opportunity to see an artist’s work whose genius broke through barriers.  His amazing work as he developed the fashion show and his take on women and their inner strength, which he loved to illustrate in his clothes, he was so not a Laura Ashley designer!

This is the largest retrospective of Alexander McQueen’s work to be shown in Europe, the original version being shown in New York,

I absolutely loved it,  its been open two weeks, I’ve seen it twice, I wouldn’t surprise myself if I average once a week, it just is so good.  If you can, come and see it, it is truly amazing – and if you can’t there are lots of utube videos, a BBC short documentary, of course online the V & A,  and lots of newspaper write ups.  Unfortunately photography is very strictly forbidden, so I can’t share with you all the wonders of the exhibition. mcqueen



Egg Muffins.

My cousin showed off an egg muffin recipe from Slimming World that she had made which looked absolutely delicious and was zero points.  I wondered how the idea would fit into the Weightwatchers plan, knowing that I would change the recipe and add a little cheese to it.

It works out at ‘just’ over 1 pro point per muffin using 4 eggs and 60g of low fat cheddar with adding sprays of oil and a drop of low fat milk.

I won’t witter on about what I did, because it all depends on what you have lurking in the fridge.  In my case I had onions, mushrooms, tomatoes and low fat cheddar.  But equally asparagus, cooked new potatoes and sweetcorn would have worked equally well, obviously remembering to watch out for any points. Egg Muffins. 1

Fresh from the oven, they were yummy.  Egg Muffins. 2

And later, cold, even tastier.  So many ways to use these little fellas, pack ups, picnics, hot with potato wedges and baked beans, cold with salads, for breakfast, for supper, or to snaffle as your passing the fridge.  My tummy is growling just looking at them, they were so good.

Mothers Day.

This post might be a bit late, but I thought I would share with you our family’s take on Mother’s Day.

Firstly my boys, well they believe its just a Hallmark – as in greetings card company – holiday.  So I got this for Mothers Day. Wishing happy mothers day._

Which was brilliant because it is lovely to talk to them although they are very cheeky monkeys.

But I didn’t get a card, as they don’t believe in sending them, but I love getting them, especially when I am so far away and it made me very sad. (Its not exactly the card, its the lack of thought, etc, etc.)   So, when they had finally understood that *cough*, three little cards came flying through the post and I proudly placed them on the mantlepiece and they made me smile.  And then hubby came down with a tightly budded bunch of daffodils, which I do adore and they are at their peak now. Mothers day 1

And in between the upset and the harmony, I decided I needed a little pick me up, shall we call it a Mothers Day Gift, to myself. (although hubby is paying and you never know the boys might contribute,  what’s that you can see, pink pigs flying)

I treated myself to this. Mothers day 2

Wonderful isn’t it.

Sometimes a girls got to do, what a girls got to do and that’s get the credit card out.

Happy Washing Days are here again.

I love spring, I do, but apart from the first flush of green that is always just wonderful, I love the chance to put a line of washing out and get that smell of sunshine on my bed clothes.  I don’t have a tumble dryer in this house so at times I have been draping bed linen over my clothes horse and other times hubby has taken our bedlinen back to Warwickshire to wash and tumble dry for me.

So this Monday, I thought I’d chance it and was up and stripping our bed at just gone 7.00 a.m. and 2 1/2 hours later – I like extra rinses, it keeps the whiteness, trust me, hubby used to design commercial laundry machines, its the rinses, with extra water that keep your whites, white –  I had this.  Washing day 2

And after a long day in the sunshine I was able to give everything a quick iron. Washing day 3

And then they were ready to air for a day on the radiators.  So happy to get all that done in one day.

And do you want to see something slightly shocking, well it was for me, coming from smog free Warwickshire. Washing day 1

One winters worth of dirt, cleaned off the washing line before hanging the laundry out and it was a short winter at that.

Rosemary, lemon and garlic chicken.

Sometimes the simple things are the best.   I think there is very little to beat a roast chicken, that has been tended with love, fresh from the oven.  And if that love has included a lemon, a fresh sprig of rosemary just picked from the garden and handfuls of garlic with just a sprinkle of sea salt, all the better. lemon garlic rosemary chicken 1 lemon garlic rosemary chicken 2 lemon garlic rosemary chicken 3 lemon garlic rosemary chicken 4

The left over chicken, chicken carcass and garlic that was just a little bit too crunchy, I simmered for a couple of hours and it turned into the most delicious richly flavoured stock.  I squeezed out the remaining garlic and made a fresh chicken and vegetable soup with young carrots, an onion and handfuls of spring greens, just perfectly vibrant and fresh for the start of spring.

Ragley Hall.

Forty years ago, as children,  we used to visit this splendid Hall to picnic for long summer days with my parents friends and their children,  but I was never allowed to visit the big house.  I don’t know why, I always wanted to but no one would fork out the money, even though I asked and asked and asked – my parents are so not stately home type visitors, so when I saw the adverts for the free weekend, Hubby had no chance, we were going!

We went on the Sunday and got there early, after hearing the horror stories of just how busy they were on the Saturday, I was determined to get in.  As it was we sat in the car park for an hour waiting for it to open.

Of course rain stopped play, cold rain sweeping in from the fields is not my idea of the best way to spend a spring afternoon, but we did have a wonderful couple of hours and I will be going back to spend a glorious day in the summer tramping around, visiting old haunts of where we played as children.  But until that day, I’ll just leave you with a few photos of the house.   Ragley Hall 1 Ragley Hall 2 Ragley Hall 4 Ragley Hall 5 Ragley Hall 6 Ragley Hall 7 Ragley Hall 8 Ragley Hall 9 Ragley Hall 10 Ragley Hall 11 Ragley Hall 12 Ragley Hall 13 Ragley Hall 14 Ragley Hall 15 Ragley Hall 16 Ragley Hall 17 Ragley Hall 18