Hello, I'm Chrissie. I can't get over how lucky I am to be living at the seaside - I still love living at Cleveleys after being here for more than 15 years. I hope you enjoy my slightly cock-eyed look at life - come back regularly for a look at living beside the seaside, our mad family life and my view on local and topical current affairs. The weather often features, along with the very different things that you get to see and do when you live somewhere like this.
I’m back everyone - after a good rest over Christmas. I was banned from blogging by Jane as we have all tried to stop working, so here I am again like the proverbial bad penny.
I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and wish you a Happy New Year, I find it hard to believe that another year has passed I don’t know about you, how time is flying. My mum used to say that the older you get the faster time goes and she was right, it’s going too quick for me but I can’t wind the clock back.
We had just the sort of Christmas that we wanted. Quiet, good food and company and all in all one of the best we’ve had so far here, preceeded by more parties than I've ever been to! So we are all back at work raring to go, as if!
I think that stopping working has turned our brains in our house as we have all been doing stupid things by the bucket load. I would be here all day if I were to tell you everything that we’ve done, so I’ll tell you one of the first things that happened on our break.
Something happens to Jane at Christmas every year, she becomes a Mary Berry (not to look at or as old I’d better add quickly) but she always gets the urge to start baking and you can’t stop her once she starts.
She takes after her grandma who baked so much at Christmas that you were eating it for ages after, so we knew what would happen when we stopped work and I was right.
Kevin loves meat and potato pie, home made of course, and as I hate making pastry Jane is the one who gets the job, so she promised him that she would make him one asap so off she went. Out came the pastry stuff and that was made and chilled in the fridge, so next she did the filling which we cook in the pressure cooker with the carrots, onions etc. Which, by the way, done in a pressure cooker makes everything so tender and with delicious gravy. This is what it should look like...
I was busy doing other things so when she shouted me over to look at the contents of the pressure cooker and asked how much gravy browning she should put in I looked inside and lo and behold, there were the onions and carrots but I turned round and said to her ‘are you going to put the meat in first before you cook it, it will taste much nicer’. So after staring at the contents which she had done and still not noticed something was missing, cracked out laughing at the thought of cooking the meal without the main ingredient!
Next was the pressure cooker which was another story.
The one we had was a wedding present for Jane and Kevin, so was 25 years old and had sadly died on us so we had to get a new one, not until we had a funeral for the old one though (I get sentimental about getting rid of anything).
Out the new one came in all its resplendent glory, gleaming, brand new and slightly different from the one I had been using all these years, so we looked at each other and said ‘now what’.
I decided that it would be a good idea to get the instructions out first so there we were, me reading all the different parts while Jane looked at the lid where all the knobs and buttons were. But after reading it I still didn’t quite get it nor did she, so we thought that there was only one thing for it and that was to get cracking and have a go so we did.
It was so funny though, if any of you out there use a pressure cooker you will know that steam builds up inside the cooker which is then released through a valve. Now the old one had a sort of round rubber thing that was in the lid with a little metal thing that popped up when the correct pressure was reached.
I only once had an accident when I was younger, many years ago, and ended up with shepherds pie filling all over the place, me included as it sort of exploded everywhere. Now it’s not a good idea to eat your filling off the kitchen ceiling, so to prevent that happening again, we both stood over the hob while it came up to pressure, reading the instructions and what to do.
By this time Derek had turned up to see what all the laughing was about but I must say he kept a safe distance away from the oven (I wonder why) while us two got to grips with the newness of the lid. Everything is now on the handle, the valve, weights, the lot so we had to wait until the red thingy popped up to tell us when the correct pressure was reached. So there we were, swaying backwards and forwards every time the little red thing popped up and then went down. It took quite a few attempts before it stayed up and meanwhile we were swaying all over as it popped up and down so that we could run if it went mad and sprayed us with meat and potato pie.
I can tell you our movements could have been put to music it was so comical, Derek kept well and truly out of the way until we were sure ‘the bomb’ that was his dinner wasn't going to go off.
Eventually we were OK and managed to make a lovely dinner that Kevin and us of course, really enjoyed.
She also made a lemon meringue which was gorgeous, so keep baking Jane please, she certainly has her gran’s touch.