We went for a walk – 11 February 2022

Today turned out a lot brighter than we expected, but cold at -3º when woke. There was no sense in wasting a dry and sunny day, so it was boots on and out!

Since it’s just a week to go until the op, Scamp had discarded her lenses and was wearing the dreaded glasses. She decided she’d like to go for a walk somewhere different. I suggested Mugdock and that’s where we went, by the long road, the wrong road. Well, it’s been a while since we last drove there and it was a nice, clear, cold day, so a bit of sight seeing just added to the outdoor experience. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Finally, we got there and got parked quite easily. We walked round the castle and the loch and then back to the car. That sounds like a poor walk, but we covered about 10,000 steps, so it was a fairly decent ramble across boardwalks, muddy paths, frozen paths. The loch was still frozen when we got to it with the mallards sitting on the ice wondering what was happening.

When we arrived back at the centre, we had a roll ’n’ egg for Scamp and a roll ’n’ sausage for me. To wash it down we had what they called a Flat White each, but as Scamp said, you were unlikely to overdose on caffein after drinking it. It was more like a Babyccino! It went in the bin and we went to look for seed compost in the nearby Calder’s garden centre. We couldn’t find any so we drove to Dobbies and got a bag of the stuff there. From there it was the long drag home.

Dinner tonight was Sweet Potato Soup and then Pizza. Watching yesterday’s Apprentice where Scamp’s least favourite competitor was sacked. I too was delighted.

PoD was a shot taken up the main avenue of the estate among the high pines.

The prompt for today was Moon River, so this may need some explanation.
Moon River left me very little wriggle room, apart from painting a moody shot of a moon reflected in a river, and I have no idea what a ‘Huckleberry Friend’ is. Almost a fortnight ago I showed the prompt to one of my wife’s friends who immediately said Breakfast at Tiffany’s and my wife agreed. The only Breakfast at Tiffany’s I’d heard of was a song by Deep Blue Something, but I guessed that wasn’t what the ladies were talking about. Sooooo, I kind of turned it on its head and sketched a breakfast of sorts in a little cafe called Tiff & Ann’s. That’s what you see here. I added the blue box because apparently that’s what Tiffany’s is famed for, that and eye watering prices. I never like to make things too easy to understand. A big thank you to Sheila and Margie without whom I’d have painted a moon and a river and Huckleberry Hound!!

Tomorrow looks like rain, in fact the weather is practising for it tonight. We may go out if we can manage to get a dry spell.

 

The Smiddy – 20 January 2022

Out to lunch today.

Drove over to The Smiddy at Blair Drummond because it was a lovely spring-like January day and because the food is generally good and not too expensive. Great scenery too looking across the carse to the hills in the distance. I’m sure I’ve said all this before, but it bears repeating. The management of diners is improving because, while you still can’t book a table, you do get given a buzzer now when you arrive. This is a good ploy on their part, because it allows you to wander round the shop that is joined on to the cafe. While the cafe food is reasonably priced, the articles on sale in the shop range from expensive to exorbitant. Bottles of beer in the shop are more than twice the price of the same in Tesco. Lady’s masks, very prettily embroidered, are about £13 each. I though £15 was expensive for three reusable ones in Boots. Now I’m recalibrating.

We did have to wait a bit more than the ten minutes we were told when we entered, but we did get a table today! Service was slow. I had a home made beef burger that came with warm (ie, not hot) chips and the usual salad. Scamp had a Mac ’n’ Cheese also with those, just warm, chips. I don’t think they were deep fried chips, more oven baked, but they looked hand cut rather than reconstituted. But service was slow. I was glad that Scamp suggested we have coffee after we’d had our lunch. Coffee arrived without a spoon. It’s little things like that, that make you question whether you will rush back again. Yes, I realise it’s mid week and yes, I realise it was lunchtime, so it was busy, but if you want people to keep coming back you have to be on the ball these days.

I did take a couple of rushed shots while we were there, but the light was gone by then and it was my own fault for not taking them before we went in. Maybe next time, if there is a next time.

Back home after stopping at Lakeland/Sainsburys on the way for the makings of tomorrow’s pudding, I decided there was just enough light to get an hour in St Mo’s to bolster my collection from The Smiddy. It had been freezing during the night and the ponds were still frozen even late into the afternoon. I tested the ice on the wee pond and deemed it strong enough to hold the weight of the Sony with kit lens. It held, just, although there was a skin of water on top of the ice, so I was ready to whip it up and out of harm’s way at the first sound of cracking. As it turned out, the shot didn’t make the cut and PoD is a photo taken standing, with both hands on the camera, of the wee frozen pond.

WiFi disappeared tonight again at almost the same time it did yesterday. This time I phoned to complain and hopefully get an explanation. I got a sort of explanation that it’s an on-going repair. ‘They’ thought they had fixed it yesterday, but then found that the repair had failed today, so ‘they’ were working on it again tonight. I don’t know who the mysterious ‘they’ are and why they are only allowed to work at night. Maybe ‘they’ are nocturnal. Maybe Virgin are employing vampires who can’t work in daylight. That might be the case, because they are bleeding us dry for a service that’s not up to standard. The WiFi came back after a couple of hours, but the member of the Help Team I spoke to said it might happen again tomorrow until they find a solution.

So, I’d better get this posted in case it all goes a bit tricky again! Working tomorrow making dinner for Crawford & Nancy. Soup’s made tonight. Pudding is almost finished, but still lots to do tomorrow.

Oh Burger! – 9 January 2022

It was a day for getting your hands dirty.

I’d bought 500g of steak mince on Friday and had already made a mince pie with half of it. The other half was destined to languish in the freezer until it was old and grey, or be made into burgers today. That rhymed, but it was an accident! Better a burger than an old grey mince ball.

I put the mince into a bowl, and since it was fresh meat, I thought it deserved fresh herbs, so I ventured into the swamp that is the back garden and cut and chopped some Sage, Rosemary and Thyme. If I’d thought about it I’d have added some Parsley for obvious reasons. Added an egg to bind it (that could be a canticle line, couldn’t it) and some salt and pepper. Then it was time to get my hands dirty and massage the whole thing into a not too sticky ball that was cut into two then the balls were flattened to make rough burger shapes. One did go in the freezer, but it won’t last long in there, the other went into the fridge to chill.

Lunch time beckoned and it was an omelette for me and a slice of black pudding with some fried potatoes on the side. Was I really going to have room for dinner tonight, I asked myself? Yes, of course I would, just as long as I didn’t eat all of the omelette. For once I took my own advice. We watched and criticised the new Sunday morning politics show that’s being fronted by Sophie Raworth. Too many interruptions said Scamp.

I was just finishing off an epistle to Alex when I looked out the back window and saw a rainbow spread across the sky where there had only been grey clouds when I had started. Even better, there was sunshine too. Closed the laptop, (sorry Alex) and put on my boots and jacket and lugged a Sony A7 across to St Mo’s. Found some swans swimming in a vague line along the side of the pond and thought that might be PoD. Then I took the camera up to the small pond which was covered in ice and the ice was covered in water. I took a £1000+ camera and lens. Placed them gingerly on the wet ice of a pond. Gently pressed the shutter button. Didn’t breathe, but with my heart in my mouth whipped the camera away before the ice changed its mind. One look at the camera screen convinced me that I’d a PoD.

Walked home where I finished the email to Alex and gave him the first look at the PoD. Then it was time to cook the burger. Almost 15 minutes, 7min and a bit on each side then a resting time of about 10min while we had thin Sourdough toast and paté as a starter. Scamp had Roasted Cauliflower with Roasted Baby Tomatoes and I had a Handmade Burger with potatoes. Pudding was a Christmas Pudding with Posh Madagascar Custard. Actually, the Christmas Pudding and Posh Custard was the winner for both of us.

We rested for a while after that and coffee, then spoke to Jamie and found out about Fences, Water Softeners and Gardiners.

Finally finished the Hidden Palace, Hazel. Beautifully written book. I think I now need to read book 1 again to remind myself how all this came to pass. I do hope there is a book 3.

Tomorrow we may go out for a spin. I need to put some expensive alcohol in the Blue Car’s tank. I think Vodka would be cheaper than petrol, these days. <Thinks, can you run a petrol car on vodka?>

Johnny Frosty – 4 January 2022

Some folk have Jack Frost, but my mum always called him Johnny Frosty, pronounced “Joanny Froasty”

Joanny Froasty definitely was about this morning. He’d been up early to cover the cars with a crisp white coating. The temperature was still sub-zero when Scamp went to make breakfast. It was her turn. We chose not to rush to get up because it was warm in bed and we both had good books to read. Let those who wanted to go to work, go. We’d stay and mind the house.

We did eventually get up and since it was such a lovely crisp morning, I suggested a walk. Maybe just a short one around St Mo’s pond. Scamp wasn’t sure. She’s not too keen on walking when it’s icy and we were pretty sure it was going to be icy. It was. We had to walk on the grass most of the way over to the park and then again on the grass until we were up the hill and under the cover of the trees where there isn’t ever much standing water to turn into ice. The rest of the fairly recently laid tarmac was an ice rink. A sloping ice rink that threatened to slide you down into the pond itself. Luckily the grass was still boggy and gave a better grip. Next time, if it’s still icy, we’ll dig out the Yak Trax. I was just reading last years blog yesterday about how we could crunch across the icy paths with these steel shod feet. What clever folk Mr Yak and Mrs Trax were.

I took some photos as we walked round the pond and they looked good on the camera screen, so I was content to limit our walk to just the one circuit. Scamp agreed and we walked back, sticking to the grass where we could.

After lunch it was time to take down the decorations, the cards and the tree. Now they are all bagged and boxed and waiting for me to put them in the loft until next year. The place did look a bit bare, but not for long.

I wasn’t impressed with the photos taken in St Mo’s once I’d downloaded them from the camera and decided there was just enough time to grab some more before the sun set. It was much colder than when we had our walk this morning. The sun was low now and not nearly as warming as it had been, however I did get some shots I liked and was heading home when I saw three different skeins of geese all travelling west. Probably heading for a grassy field not far away which seems to support many groups of geese on their journey south. It’s great to watch these flights of birds and even better to listen to them calling to each other. I often wonder what they are saying. But the cold was beginning to bite now and I headed home.

These photos were much better and I actually got three good enough to go on Flickr. My favourite, and PoD was the one you see here of the weed with the ice melt forming balls of water, with setting sun behind them.

My next task was to find out how much MPB would give me for my hardly used Oly E-M1 Mk2. The good thing about selling through them is that you get an instant quote, based on your estimated condition for the camera. I was happy with the quoted price and downloaded the form which never prints properly the first time. I finally got it printed, filled in and signed. Then I had to find all the bits and pieces that had to go in the box along with the camera. With it all boxed up it was time for dinner. Scamp was making a J&S speciality, Bacon and Borlotti Beans. Great recipe, beautifully cooked.

Last thing to do was to wrap up the parcel to be uplifted by DPD tomorrow. I was a wee bit sad to be sending that lovely camera away, but I hadn’t used it for months and it seemed a shame to just have it sitting there when I could get some money from it. Of course I have a way for that money to go!

Tomorrow I’d like to get some photo paper and we need a wall calendar too. Scamp has volunteered to wait in for the parcel.

Snow management – 11 February 2021

Another day removing the snow from the paths and from the cars.

Scamp started the effort by brushing the snow from the roof of her car. Then while I got rid of the rest of the snow on mine and ran the engine for a while to get rid of the condensation that gathers on all the glass surfaces, Scamp started to get rid of the snow that had accumulated on the path in to our house and the next door neighbour’s. Most of it was wind blown snow, but a small amount was fresh snow. When she was finished and the car was dry inside, I used up almost all of our remaining white salt to make sure the path stayed clear of snow and hopefully of ice.

After lunch we went for a walk down to the shops, more for the exercise than for any great shopping expedition. I think we bought more food for the birds than for ourselves. The plan was for Scamp to walk back with the bags and I would go for a walk in St Mo’s. I changed it slightly to walk up the path behind St Mo’s school and along a path that I’ve walked many times, but today I was wearing wellies and I could just wade through the areas that I usually have to avoid because they’re too deep for my leaky boots. It was like a whole new landscape with hardly any landmarks because everything was covered in a white duvet of snow.

Went for a walk in St Mo’s and followed some deer tracks for a while, but never saw the maker of the tracks. The tracks looked fresh, but either they were hiding somewhere or were just over the next hill, or the next one again. PoD was a whin bush covered in a shiny ice crown. Shot into the sun it really sparkled. Everything else I took was just a cliché snow picture.

By the time I was coming home it was chilling down again and the temperature when I got to the house was -0.5ºc and it felt about a degree below that. We had bought some fat balls for the birds, so I put three of them on a tray in the back garden. An hour later they were all gone. I suspect it may have been a big black crow or a magpie that was the culprit. Even a flock of starlings wouldn’t devour three fat balls that quickly.

Yesterday’s sketch, posted today was the beach at Pigeon Point in Tobago. If you’re going to draw and paint a beach, make it a peach of a beach. Pigeon Point fits the bill.

Today’s sketch is a strange one. The prompt was ‘Draw’. What I drew was my right hand holding a graphite stick. If my right hand was the model, then my left hand was the one that drew the sketch. It’s harder than you think drawing with your left hand. Even knowing exactly where you want the lines to go, doesn’t mean that your muscle control will ensure it goes where you intended. A worthwhile exercise.

Tomorrow I might manage to get my car out for a drive. Today I got it to move, but not far. Scamp may have to wait until the mountain that’s in front of her’s has melted away a bit before she is mobile again. Other than that, it’s wait and see what the weather brings us.

Pencils, paints and brushes – 1 February 2021

February and two sketching challenges begin today.

Another day in the frozen north. No snow, just frost on the cars. We didn’t need to go out, so we stayed in until we were sure that things were warming up, then we made our move.

We were heading down and round Broadwood today. The main paths were mostly clear and thawing nicely, but in the shade of the trees round the boardwalk at Broadwood the ice was as treacherous as usual. Today’s PoD was taken from there. It looks like the whole loch is just one big sheet of ice, but five minutes away, round the corner it’s open water. Strange. We watched a Goosander slipping and sliding on the ice trying to grab what appeared to be a piece of lemon.  It eventually gave up and went back to fishing. Thankfully round the corner the paths were much clearer. We walked our usual route round the end of the loch and on over the dam then down near Blackwood and back up to the stadium. That took us neatly to the shops. I was the only one carrying money, so I got to go to M&S to get veg for tonight’s dinner and a loaf.

Back home and after lunch I got a call from Colin to reassure me that he was keeping fine, with a bit of a chest infection, but definitely ONLY a chest infection. He’d been to see two doctors on Zoom or something like it and they had prescribed an antibiotic which he says is working. It must be cold today because he said he was going to work in his big heated greenhouse, but ended up coming back into the house for a heat. While we were talking he was watching his wife going for her second circuit with the dog “Round the Policies” as he puts it. A walk round his enormous garden. We chatted for a while about things in general and commiserated with each other for holidays lost and cancelled and agreed to keep in touch.

Ray was the only one of the Auld Guys who still hadn’t replied to my email from last week, so I phoned him, or tried to. The phone rang for about seven rings then stopped and a lady’s voice told me “Thank you. GOODBYE!” As abruptly as that. No chance to leave a message. Strange. I checked on the computer if I had the correct number, but it was. I thought I’d leave it for a while and phone later.

Dinner tonight was Chicken stuffed with spinach and wrapped in Parma Ham with oven roasted chips (home made). A Scamp creation which went down very nicely. Pudding was Cherry Crumble. Again, from Scamp’s fair hands. Equally delicious. Then the phone rang. It was Ray. Great to hear his voice. We discussed phones, RSPB Garden Bird Watch and how boring life is now. He’s a bit put out, because Nic hasn’t sent him a letter with his vaccine appointment yet and I’ve got mine (strangely the same day as Colin’s wife’s – but in a different town). I suggested the lack of letter might have been down to him being English. He just harrumphed! We also agreed to keep in touch.

In the afternoon I put on the heater in my room and started on the first prompt for Every Day in February and 28 Drawings Later. The prompt was “Coffee”. I managed that, as you can see. Not my best, but I’m a bit rusty and also I couldn’t find my favourite ‘Sword Brush’. I’ve found it now buried under a pile of papers on the dining table. I’m hoping for a better result from tomorrow’s prompt.

That’s about it for today. A day with a walk, two contacts made and a coffee cup painted, not to mention that chicken with parma ham.

Tomorrow we have no plans, but snow is forecast for during the night, so we will be at the mercy of the elements again.

Baking and house building – 28 January 2021

We thought it might be a good idea to go out early for our walk, and it was.

We walked down round the path to Broadwood and, after some discussion, went round the boardwalk. At first there seemed to be no birds on the water at all. Then I spotted what looked to be a grey heron, but a small, scraggy one. It was standing on the ice that still coats Broadwood looking very sorry for itself. I took a few photos, expecting it to fly off immediately it saw me, but instead it decided that it too wanted to go on a walk and disappeared round the corner, on foot (or on claw). I’m thinking now it might have been a young or perhaps sickly bird. Must check the next time we’re down that way.

We walked round one of our normal routes, noting the speed at which the new Covid testing station had been built in the carpark of Broadwood Stadium. It shows what can be done if the need arises.

Back home and after lunch the weather closed in even more. That fine smirr of the morning was now a drizzle and heading to full tilt rain. I decided the grey heron photo from the morning would be PoD. Scamp decided it was time we started making the Gingerbread House. That is, it was time I started making the Gingerbread House. She was simply the overseer, the ‘Gaffer’ and I was the labourer. I know my place. Bear in mind that this project started out as hers, then became a joint effort and now it was all mine. That’s the way it goes sometimes. I know, I’ve been there before. Apron on, time to get started.

Melted the butter over a low gas and added the sugar, then transferred the dank brown sludge to a big bowl and after letting it cool a bit, added the flour then kneaded it into a soft(ish) ball of dough. Chopped it in two and rolled out each piece and placed two templates on top and cut round the rectangle (Roof/Wall) and the triangle (End Wall). Did the same with the other piece of dough. Crushed up some sweets and poured the resulting scraps into the window holes of the Roof/Wall. We should have made a video of me smashing a poly bag of sweets with a claw hammer. Really funny, really satisfying! Scamp cut out two ‘adorable’ gingerbread people from the leftover dough, two Christmas trees and two candy canes, all using templates she’d prepared earlier. Baked the lot in the oven for about 15mins and surprise, surprise they actually looked like they’d work!

We let the gingerbread and our tempers cool while I made Carrot & Lentil Curry with Flatbread for dinner. Curry was good. Flatbread was exceptional.

Assembly was the bit that worried me, but the glue we made with beaten egg white and icing sugar was fantastic, if a bit messy, especially when a bit of back pressure on the piping bag allowed some of the mixture to escape back up the bag and onto the carpet (oops!). Actually, the assembly was a dawdle. I was expecting some of the disasters you see on GBBO, but it just worked. That’s what happens when two professionals follow the instructions. Decoration was a bit clumsy, I admit I have to work on that, but the overall effect was ok and much improved by Scamp’s careful placing of the Smarties, althought I do believe she sampled a few. Thank you JIC for an imaginative Christmas present. We both had a good laugh.

Now the Grey Heron photo got PoD, but I’ve made the corporate decision to use the Gingerbread House as the lead on the blog.

It’s really raining now, teeming down, but the weather fairies say it will dry up by tomorrow morning, so we might get out a walk. If not, we’ve a cake to eat.

More dancing – 24 January 2021

A lesson this time, not a dance.

Yet another cold morning. It was -4ºc when Scamp was making the breakfast.

Of course we weren’t getting up at that time. Never on a Sunday! However, once we’d had breakfast showered and were ready to face the day I did take a walk to examine the frost on the car and managed to get a couple of photos of the little ice crystals. One was posted on Flickr, but it didn’t achieve PoD.

It wasn’t until well after midday that we steeled ourselves and went for a walk around St Mo’s pond. I took a few more frosty photos there and it was one of them that produced the tiny frozen trees that made PoD. It was a close run thing with my other favourite photo, a leaf covered with hoar frost.

It was just above freezing when we arrived back at the house. Dinner tonight was Bacon and Borlotti Beans. Now becoming a firm favourite. Then we had to move all the furniture around for tonight’s dance class. First off was a reprise of last week’s Mambo Marina followed by our ongoing stumbles through Rumba and finished off with the Midnight Jive. We weren’t too bad at that. It was me stumbling round the rumba that was the low point. Even with Stewart and Jane’s encouragement, we are finding it hard. Not insurmountable, just difficult. It doesn’t help that we are dancing on a carpet and they are demonstrating on a polished wooden floor. However, the hour passed fairly quickly and with a bit of practise over the next few days we’ll get there, I’m sure. If not, we’ll have invented an new dance, The Stumble Rumba. It does have a certain ring to it!

Spoke to JIC at night and were surprised to hear that they had had a full day of snow and we had none. Maybe I shouldn’t say that. You never know what we’ll wake up to tomorrow!

Tomorrow morning I’m supposed to be doing a rubbish uplift for Shona. Hope the skips have been emptied over the weekend to make room for it all.

 

 

We took Katy skating – 23 January 2021

It was a cold start again. No snow and only a little bit of ice, but frost covering all the cars.

We decided we’d make a fairly leisurely start today. In fact it was well into afternoon before we booted up and walked around St Mo’s. I reckoned there would be enough ice for Katy and there was. I took Scamp on a trek out into the wild woods at the back of St Mo’s. I thought I’d make a slight detour to show her my hibernating ladybird, but shock, horror, no ladybird. Perhaps the two sunny days recently have brought it out of its winter sleep. Let’s hope so. We did find a lush crop of hair ice on the exact same log I’d found it earlier in the month. Plenty of other logs nearby in the same state of degradation with no sign of the strange ice formation on them. Apparently it’s linked to a specific type of fungus. Strange stuff.

Katy had been wanting to go skating for weeks, but the thaw had put paid to her chances. I was sure the ice would be thick enough today and it was … but only just. I got her to pose and even as I was setting up the camera, I could tell that the ice was starting to melt. I could even see the dead leaves under the ice moving in the current. Took a swift half dozen or so shots from various angles. Some with extra illumination, some not. As we were walking away from the tiny pond I ’chimped’ them and none of them were truly sharp. Not to worry I was sure I’d find a more accessible shot on the other side of the big pond.

We walked round the pond after we’d survived the tangled brambles and the two leaps of faith across the burn. There I found what I was looking for. The rain from last week had frozen solid on the path making walking it without YakTrax treacherous. Not so for a minifig with ice skates. Katy posed again and this time I got the shot. Not perfect, but much better than the first shots. I have to be careful here. Katy is not technically a Weeman. She is a WeeWummin. She’s my ice skater. She made PoD.

Dinner was Fish Fingers and Baked Potato for Scamp and M&S Beef Burger with Baked Potato for me. Both washed down with a glass of Malbec. Not the best tasting wine I’ve ever had. It tasted raw and bitter to me, although Scamp found it really nice.

Entertainment started at 7.30pm in the form of a Zoom Dance. It was a particularly well attended dance and our feet are feeling the effects of dancing the night away. It finished just half an hour ago. Great fun as usual and another Zoom Class to look forward to tomorrow.

Apart from the dance class we may go out for a walk if the weather is conducive. It may be cold tomorrow as the temperature is -2.4c just now.

Under the weather – 16 January 2021

I suppose we’re always under the weather. It doesn’t matter if it’s rain or snow our sunshine, the weather is always above us, ergo we are always under the weather.

However I had a sore throat, was a bit shivery and ached all over just the typical symptoms of a cold. I could have languished in it and stayed in bed with a good book, but I was a big brave boy and I had things to do, so I forced myself to get up. As usual, a hot shower helped and a couple of fizzy vitamin C tabs kicked some more life into me, as did a cup of coffee. It was raining otherwise I’d have gone out for a walk, if it was dry, but instead I stayed in for the morning at least.

Lunch was beans on toast. When was the last time you had beans on toast? I can’t remember, but it was a long time ago. You forget just how good simple food can be. The rain had stopped, so I suggested to Scamp that we might go out for a walk and she agreed. Just a wander around St Mo’s would do today, sticking to the paths for once. No wandering into the woods, getting wet and making the cold worse. It got today’s PoD there which is a single seed on the cow parsley that I love. Apparently they are edible for humans as well as birds and taste slightly of aniseed. I may try them sometime. It looked as if all the ice had gone, but only from the grass and the paths. There were still ice floes on the pond. It was nice to see the ducks returning from their winter holiday in the Canary Isles. They flew in when we were on our second circuit. I hope they enjoyed the visit to their little yellow cousins.

Back home we were having good warming food for dinner. Mince ’n’ Tatties with Cabbage for me and Bubble ’n’ Squeak for Scamp. Again, plain, simple food. Before that there was Limoncello to make. I decanted the yellow liquor from the jar and ditched the lemon rind. Then, I mixed a cup of caster sugar with a cup of boiling water to make the syrup and poured it in in stages into the alcohol. Actually all the syrup was needed to sweeten the limoncello and then it could be poured into a vodka bottle with the remainder half filling an old limoncello bottle. One to go into the cupboard and one to chill in the fridge. Home made Limoncello. A great Christmas prezzy. Thank you again Scamp.

After dinner we watched a video of what we hope Stewart & Jane have planned for the first of the Sunday Zoom Dance Lessons. Actually looking forward to it now. Feeling much better after a decent walk round the pond in the afternoon and I’ve just taken the second of my vitamin C drinks of the day. Hoping to feel back to normal tomorrow.

So, tomorrow we’re hoping to do a bit of dance practise and that’s about it. Weather looks like today. Rain and sunny spells.