Sunday 31 August 2014

Sunday dinner - stuffed pork steak

Today I decided I would do a few chores to keep myself busy.  
First of all I mowed the lawn and cleaned the front garden.  Then I went off to the shops to buy something for dinner.

I decided to make a stuffed pork steak.  I cheated and bought some ready made sage and onion stuffing, but I did stuff and string it up myself.

After 45 minutes at 175 degrees it was looking good.

I served it with some nice green beans, carrots, baby corn and new potatoes.  Plus a nice gravy.
If I say so myself it was really really tasty and a very easy dinner to make.

What did you have for dinner/lunch today?!

Monday 25 August 2014

Review of Seller Beware by Denise Barnes

My twin sister is a librarian and is the best book "recommender" ever.  I love calling out to her library when she is in work as I am guaranteed a great week for the next week.

Last week I called out and she pointed me out a book on Tom Gilmartin which she thought I'd enjoy.  It's right up my street and I am steadily working my way through it at the moment.

She is in a new library which is really nice - bright and airy and most importantly Great Stock of new and old books.

I chose one other book which just caught my eye as I was browsing.  I found a nice little armchair in the new library and started reading it while I was waiting for my sister to finish up and I was hooked!

Seller Beware by Denise Barnes is an intriguing read about a woman who built up an admirable business over 20/30 years and how practically overnight almost lost it all.

She has now written this book as an (honest) warning of what not to do if you are in her position - or I guess what she would do differently if she was to do it all over again.

It is not difficult to feel sympathy for the author, but I have to admit during the read there were times I was saying "noooooo" don't do it.  However, you can also see how it happened.  Events lead to events and there were knock ons from everything - once that train was running on the track it was impossible to stop.

It is a great (but sad!!!) little read.  While a sad story, I found the author's attitude uplifting and I have no doubt that Ms Barnes will rise again. I wish her all the best in her future career whatever she decides to do. As for the two villains of the story (read it, you'll see), I am at a loss to say what I wish for them!!!!

Sunday 17 August 2014

Vintage(?) Bewley's crockery

This is my cousin's Bewley's espresso set.  It is made up of two little espresso cups and saucers, a little sugar bowl and a little cute jug.

There is a long convoluted "family story" of how these came about.  

Shortened version/summary:
About 18 years ago Kasey's mam was home from South Africa in Dublin (they lived in SA at this time).  She went into Bewley's cafe to buy Kasey an espresso cup for her collection of espresso cups.
Long story short she was refused (quite rudely!!!!) her request could she buy one.  
The nineteen year old me was affronted at the rudeness and the injustice of it all so I wrote a big long indignant letter (I cringe now!!!) to the management of Bewley's.

Anyhoo, there is a nice ending out of it all, management wrote back apologising and asking for Kasey's SA address to send her a "tea and coffee hamper" with the espresso cup!  Plus they gave me a voucher for my mother and I to go for dinner in Bewley's.

My nineteen year old self was delighted with this! 

Aren't they adorable!

This pic is better for showing their little teeny tiny size 

Sunday Brunch!

Today I called to my cousin's apartment for a lovely Sunday brunch.  I got on the train at my house at 10.55 and arrived at her apartment at 11.05, how convenient is that!

This was my outfit for brunch - it's getting chillier already :-(

How cute is this little Bewley's jug*??!!!  
(*read my next blog post if you'd like to know more about this little jug and it's origins!)

Kasey made very nice rashers (bacon!) and french toast.

Thai green curry

I was staying in on Saturday night so decided to treat myself to some thai food.

I really like Diep at Home - aside from their delivery charge - €2.95!!!!

How nice does plain steamed rice smell and taste?

Thai green curry and rice. 
Lovely flavoured THICK sauce - I hate when the sauce in a curry is thin and miserable!

Oh yes, I should also mention, I get chicken and sauce only!  No veg!

Sunday 10 August 2014

Review of Ecco Domani - At Home in Key West

Back in June of this year we stayed in Key West in a lovely house called Ecco Domani.  We rented through At Home in Key West who we found great to deal with.

Here is my review on tripadvisor about it:
“Exceeded our expectations”

We loved this house!
Super location - just one block off Duval - and also near to the beach; we went to the Southernmost beach a lot.
We thought that the house is bigger then it looks in the photographs. We were expecting a small little conch cottage whereas we got a nice size 3 storey house. The bedrooms in particular were very roomy and of course the main bathroom with the jacuzzi bath, the doublesize waterfall shower (with sit down area) and double vanity area was fabulous.
It had all the expected amenities and we made particular good use of the ice machine for cocktails by the pool :-)
Decor is modern. Very nice bed linen and lots of towels were provided.
The pool area was a little small (but no smaller then we expected from the photographs). Was not great for sunbathing as the sun only hits in one spot but as I mentioned earlier we went to the beach a lot.
All in all a great house.

Also must mention the good service from At Home in Key West when booking. I found the Live Chat service really useful. We had no need to contact them during our stay (no issues with house etc) so cannot comment on service during our stay.

We ate at out the majority of the time and aside from the fish we caught (we went fishing with Captain John's Greyhound V) we never cooked at home.
Our favourite places are A&B lobster house/Alonzos, Santiagos Bodega and Firefly.

Coach and Banana Republic on Duval are probably the only two good stores - unless you are only looking for tee-shirts!!!!
Red Gallery near Flagler Station museum is good for quirky gifts.

Recommendations things to do:
Custom House Museum
Lighthouse tour
Little White House
Hemingway House
Fishing with Captain John's Greyhound V is always good

Wednesday 6 August 2014

Tuesday 5 August 2014

Hemingway House picture

I bought a lovely picture of Hemingway house in the airport on the way home from Key West.  It is a print of a painting by a local artist.  And it was only about $7....seriously cheap imo.

So today I got around to getting a frame for the picture - in Ikea!
The frame cost €4.50

A little bit of paradise at home in Dublin.  I love it.
Now I just need to pick a nice place to hang it.