The Country Garden Cottage Pie was rather lovely, I had seconds for lunch today as well. Not the healthiest meal due to the volume of cheese, but pretty good without that, so next time I'll do it with less. Today I've not yet decided between ' Chestnut & Sage Cobbler' and 'Bobotie' - both one pot meals (less mess, yay). The chestnut & sage is a potential 'meal-to-take-to-someone's-house-over-Christmas-instead-of-meat' as I'm the only vegetarian in the families (at least the families we'll be seeing over Christmas that is).
We go to my mums house on Christmas day - this year is going to be the easiest 20 minute walk now we live so close - most other years we've had to go up a really steep hill & a 40 minute walk, one year we even drove 3 hours down the motorway from Stoke on Trent! Hopefully it'll mean that we can have a really good little 'just-the-three-of-us- Christmas before we go, which will be nice. At mum's is my sister and her 2 children (and my mum, of course) Joe (15) and Nathaniel (3). Joe I think is at his dad's house till mid afternoon / early evening so at least Justin can be with us rather than going upstairs to play computer games with Joe - I have to keep an eye on Isaac by myself then, which is tricky when the two younger boys are together as they are buggers :)
The day after, Boxing Day, is Pamela's birthday (that's my mother-in-law) and we go over to hers, and usually there is Karen (Justin's sister) and Darren (her boyfriend) and Marjorie (Justins Grandma) and Peter (Pamela's boyfriend). It's a birthday and Christmas celebration all in one which is nice, though it is the complete opposite of my families celebration - far more polite and well behaved!
The day after that is Colin's birthday - that's Justins' dad - my father-in-law - so we either go to his house or to his sisters house (Di) - I think now Colin has a bigger house it'll probably be there all the time, which is good in one way - very child friendly, as they have children Isaac's age and now younger - but also a shame in a way as Di's house is very traditional and is in the country and feels a bit 'old' - in the sort of 'olde' way - not all modern clean lines and so on - and we like that, it feels ever so cosy. Still, it's usually fun with so many people - Karren and Darren again, but then Colin, his wife Nicki, their 3 year old Keira, Justin's Nana Joyce, Di and her husband Peter, and sometimes people from Nicki's side now as well - her Mum or Dad usually. This year as well will be Isaac's Uncle George who is only a few months old!
I managed to get 4 cards made last night and was very pleased with them, it's something I only started doing a little while ago but, like the knitting, I find it quite relaxing, and I'm really pleased with the results. I'm starting to wonder if I might find it hard to part with them...On that note, I've also signed up to Crafts 365 - photograph something you're making every day for the next year - so I think that getting my camera out for taking three photographs will be more likely to happen than just for one. Every day! They might overlap a little as well, I would imagine. I'm trying to clear out my flickr account a little bit to make way for all these photographs that are going to be coming in, but that's about a weeks constant work by itself, as I used it for storage when I moved house / PC and so I have to open and save them all before I can delete anything. Not the quickest job!
Today Justin was working locally - his current job is in London - auditing London hospitals - but starting the last week in December (before Christmas I mean) he's going to be working in our home town! No more getting up at 6 am! This morning I was woken by the sound of the ironing board being taken out of the understairs cupboard at about quarter past 7 and it just makes *such* a difference to how I feel during the day. Mind you saying that, I haven't got any more work done in the house than usual - mainly thanks to Isaac refusing to sleep - but I have got a lot of secret things done for Christmas, so I guess it evens out a bit.
Todays plans? Cook soon, moar cards!! and we really *have* to watch a film tonight, as I've got to take them back in two days time. I can knit while I watch too. Dofus would be good but hmm, I doubt it :( Apart from that? My house is filled with STUFF. Stuff where it doesn't need to be. Why is there a spanner on my kitchen worksurface, and a book of poetry, and a ukelele? I need to have such a little amount of stuff that when things don't get put away after use, I still have a house underneath, rather than a dump.