Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Lest we Forget

Thank you to all who have served and do serve.  Thank you to those who sacrificed their lives in service.


Special memory of Neil Munslow-Davies who passed away recently.  Thank you Neil for your service to the Country, and your friendship, leadership, care and concern for the children in Scouts.


For the Fallen

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With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children, 
England mourns for her dead across the sea. 
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit, 
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal 
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres, 
There is music in the midst of desolation 
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young, 
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow. 
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted; 
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: 
Age shall not weary them, nor the years contemn. 
At the going down of the sun and in the morning 
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again; 
They sit no more at familiar tables of home; 
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time; 
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound, 
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight, 
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known 
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust, 
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain; 
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness, 
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Lest We Forget

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Adventures with a Thermomix #2

So today we had Chili Con Carne from Mrs D plus 3's blog - original recipe from here .

  • 1 red capsicum
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 10g olive oil
  • 500g mince
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp chilli powder/flakes (or fresh)
  • 1 tin kidney beans
  • 1 tin chick peas
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbs veggie stock paste
  • 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 50g tomato paste
  • black pepper
  1. Chop the onion and garlic for 5 seconds on speed 5.
  2. Add the oil and saute for 3 mins on 100 degrees, speed 1.
  3. Add the carrots, capsicum and celery and chop for 3 seconds on speed 5.
  4. Add the cumin, chilli flakes, cinnamon and black pepper and cook on reverse speed soft for 5 mins at 100 degrees.
  5. Add the kidney beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, chickpeas, balsamic vinegar and stock and mix on reverse speed 1 for 30 seconds.
  6. Add the mince and cook for 25 mins on reverse speed soft at 100 degrees.
  7. Serve with rice and a dollop of plain yoghurt.

Couple of notes, couldn't get the speed dial to turn initially, had to take the bowl out, lid off and start from scratch again.

Also need to break up meat before putting in the bowl, the mixing doesn't break it up enough. I think next time I'll add a step 4b in to break up the mince before putting the other items in.

But definitely a delicious dish and will be on the regular menu.

Adventures with a Thermomix #1

I've finally did it.  I bought a Thermomix TM31 second hand from a lady who likes cooking the "old fashioned way".  My hubby and a dear friend contributed to the cost, so it's actually an early birthday present.

So today I decided to give it a go.

Now, when you buy one new, I believe, that the lovely Thermomix Consultants deliver it and help you get started.  This, of course, doesn't happen when you buy one second hand.  So I'm relying on the books that came with it, and the internet to get going :)

Fitting it all together wasn't that hard - especially after reading the bit about putting the sealing ring in the lid.

The first thing I tried it in was milling some cardamon seeds as I was going to cook Biryani Rice from the Meat on the Menu cookbook.

However, I quickly discovered that this wasn't appropriate for a complete beginner as it had instructions like "Cover with lid and Varoma dish containing half cooked potatoes and eggs".

Neither potatoes and eggs were in the ingredient list, and I didn't actually want potatoes, and I wasn't sure if the "half cooked" referred to the eggs as well as the potatoes, and if I didn't want to do this, what lid was I supposed to use? You can see my problem - remember, complete beginner.

So I flicked through the other books that I received with the machine and found the Everyday Cookbook, which seems to be more targeted at my level.

On page 22 it told you how to make Cooked Rice, so I used those instructions with the spices recommended by the Biryani recipe and I'm now waiting for it to cook.

My only complaint so far, is that it is pretty noisy :(

UPDATE:  When it finishes it yells at you until you turn the speed off :)    Rice tastes yummy, but 400gm of rice was a bit too much.  Next time I'll stick to 300gm.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Miss 15 - Out and About

Some photos from Miss 15's last weekend at Mount Takao:

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Monday, April 10, 2017

Miss 15 - Day 20 in Japan

Another 1/2 day of school today:

Friday, April 7, 2017

Miss 15 - Day 17 in Japan

She went to see the cherry blossoms today

Miss 15 - Day 16 in Japan - Day 1 of School

Last message received from Miss 15 last night:

"im presenting a speech in japanese infront of the whole school tomorrow morning"

From today:

She also met some of her teachers today and spoke with some other students - in Japanese :)

It was only a half day.  They start full-time on Monday.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Miss 15 - Day 15 in Japan

Miss 15 went on Monday to the school to get fitted for her uniform, apparently they don't make Japanese people in her size.

SO the school can provide a skirt for her (wonder how short it is), but she needed to go to a normal department shop to find school shirts and she's getting a blazer made for her.

So today she went shopping for the shirts.

Her report:

"[Shopping was] difficult because my arms were so long and my shoulders are wide - but I found my size in mens, so yay"

Photo obtained:

UPDATE 2: Added a Japanese student wearing the uniform for comparison.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Miss 15's - 14th Day in Japan

Look what she got up to ...  She visited Yomiuri Land - and yes, she did go on the roller coaster and ferris wheel

Sunday, April 2, 2017

From Miss 15 - Day 12 in Japan

We had the AFS chapter picnic today and it was lots of fun, we went on the train and it took forever, when we got off the station was quite crowded, we walked outside to a massive park and i took a photo of the shrine entrance.

then we walked into the entrance to the actual park and it was quite packed

and we found the aAFSers and followed them into the park,
we met everyone else when we got there and we all sat down, we introduced ourselves and our families to the group, then we ate lunch and played games. Then we finished and micah's and my families walked together to look at the shrine and as we were walking out of the park it was jam packed.
We walked to the shrine but it was under construction so I took a photo of the entryway
then after we went to the shrine we walked to the train station and that was crazy, we waited in the entrance for about 20 mins before getting to the gate
then once we got off the crowded train we had to cross the shibuya scramble, - im pretty sure its shibuya but idk
then when we got off the train at our local stop it was finally less crowded, and we walked home and saw the cherry blossom festival.