Wednesday 28 April 2021

Long weekend on the water!

Sunday morning: Crab traps - it is coming to the end of the stone crab season (sob, sob, sniffle, sniffle) so when we checked the crab traps (4 big claws!), we brought three traps back to shore in the baby boat.  We gave them a hose down on the dock and when we brought them home we gave them a further two good hoses with the power washer.

Sunday afternoon: Went to a sandbar with friends in their boat.  We were exhausted when we got home!! The sun and the water just drains you - in the best possible way.  We ordered pizza for dinner and that tells it's own tale of how tired we were.  We almost NEVER eat/order pizza.

Monday morning (Yep, Patrick took a day off work, and Monday's are always my Sunday): Fishing! Like loopers, we spent waaaay too long out there chasing the big one and when we got home for lunch, guess what, we were starving and pretty zonked.

Monday afternoon:  But we are warriors, we pushed on through and at 4pm we cycled down to the historic seaport and went out for a three hour snorkel trip.  It was just beautiful out there.  What a great experience viewing the reef and all the amazing fish.  And then a few drinkies on the way back in - plus we caught sunset from the boat.  It really was just a fantastic experiential and fun trip.  It was 8pm when we docked so we went to a new to us restaurant (Off the Hook) and shared a lovely light dinner of hogfish.

A spectacular long weekend all round! And boy, did we sleep great that night!

Vaccines. Done and done.

Both Patrick and I have now had both our vaccines. It is obviously a a big relief.  I'm still feeling, frustration and even guilt that Canada and Ireland are still behind in the vaccine game. Patrick's parents have both got their first shot, but no clear timeframe of when they will get their second.  My dad has just got his first one, and will get his second one around May 12th all going to plan. And hopefully my mam is in line to get hers first soon also.

For posterity, here is a photo of me getting my second shot. If you want to read about my first, click here.
Patrick sent me this photo after getting his second one, and I love him for it.  He is not a selfie taker at all, but he knew that I would like it.  I did slag him that it appears they did his in the broom closet and we had a good laugh about that.  

Another pic for posterity.  I don't think I've ever posted a photo of us in this blog of us wearing the face masks.  Well, maybe this blog will still exist, and be read by someone in 150 years time, this was life in 2020 and 2021.  I hope with these vaccines we are close to the end of face coverings.

Polly wants a cocktail!


Car bar coming along nicely!

Bar wall

My new sign!

Monday 19 April 2021

Random bits and pieces


I scored two days in row in my office (versus out at front desk), and I got so much work cleared from my desk, it was just awesome!

Yep, I still love Lilly.  This one feels like an authentic 1960's style. It's verrry short lol

Funeral of Prince Philip.  I stuck it on in the background while I was working.  As an Irish person I don't necessarily have a huge gra (insert fada on the a!), but hey, history as it happens etc etc

I'm organizing a little get together with some of my Key West gal pals.  I'm dyyyyyying for the Oysters Rockefeller in Berlins's.  And yes, maybe a cocktail or two ;)

Water activities!

 Weather has been good lately and accordingly, we've been getting out on the water a fair bit.

Thursday: we went out with G on his boat after work.  

It was just fabulous out there!

Patrick caught two lane snapper (one quite big one) and I caught two also.  

Cooked up two for a lovely Saturday evening dinner!


Friday: After work, we zipped out to check the crab traps.  We caught 4 ok ones for our freezer stockpile.  And had a lovely dinner on the water of sushi and prosecco.  No photos! But I think you can imagine how nice that was, right!.  

Sunday: We got up nice and early and were on the water at 8am.  Fish onnn!

Another 4 again, caught between us.  I got a decent size Lane snapper (one inch below Patrick's Thursday catch) and a nice porgy.  Patrick caught two lane (similar size to the one above).

Monday (today): Lovely dinner ahead of us of fresh grilled fish (Lane and Porgy)

Have a great Monday, dear reader

Reduce, reuse, recycle

 Remember I recently posted about the new food I discovered?  Israeli cous cous.  Which btw I texted Enid about, she had never heard of it either.

I bought it in GFS which I guess is like a wholesalers, and the bag it came in was BIG.  So this is the way I am storing them in my kitchen press now:

I have decided that I shall try buy more foods (rice/cereal/pastas) in bulk and store them like this too.

I also have started a little project with the current contents of my makeup bag.  A friend of mine mentioned something on facebook about makeup and one of her friends told her about "project pan". So I've decided.  I'm not buying a new makeup product until I've completely used up one I currently have.

That leads me to tell you about something else cool I saw on facebook.  A video from channel4 about a woman (Flora Blathwayt) who, during the pandemic, started litterpicking on beaches and the Thames river shore.  She cleans all the plastic she finds and upcycles it by using it to make greeting cards.  The cards are fine imo, it is the creativity of finding a reuse for them that really impresses me.  Go girl!

Sunday 11 April 2021

Sundaying the right way!

The day started off with Bill (neighbour), Patrick and I sitting out the front of our house on three adirondack chairs.  Having the chats, and each ignoring a chore that each needed to do. 

For lunch we had chick fil-A...there is not a chick fil-A on the island I hear you say?! Bill and a friend had driven to Miami the day before and brought a whole bunch back with them.  Kindly gave us two.  Mmmm!

It has been so long since I spent some time at the beach and today was the right day to rectify it.  I went to the Southernmost beach and I am delighted to report they have installed a ton of new bike racks in the pocket park at the entrance.  It was a joy to cycle to and park in. And of course the beach was just fab!

Thunderstorms were predicted late afternoon, early evening so we zipped out to check the crab traps around 3pm.  We landed 5! Delighted with that.

And then this evening dinner was steak and cheesy (Israeli) cous cous. Oh and just a small matter of KEY LIME PIE for dessert.

Just a perfect day
You made me forget myself
I thought I was someone else
Someone good

Oh, it's such a perfect day
I'm glad I spent it with you
Oh, such a perfect day
You just keep me hanging on
You just keep me hanging on

You're going to reap just what you sow
You're going to reap just what you sow
You're going to reap just what you sow
You're going to reap just what you sow

Friday 9 April 2021

Israeli cous cous and general round up of news

I discovered a new food!  Israeli cous cous - which tastes very different to the (semolina) cous cous that I am used to.  It is is much bigger and more "chew" to it also.

Interesting factoid: it is not actually a cous cous and is technically actually a pasta.  The genesis of it is also interesting: in response to a rice shortage in Israel in the 1950's "pitim" - pasta in the shaped like pearl rice grains was developed.

I cooked it with garlic, red chili flakes in a chicken broth and it was quite nice indeed.  It may well become a staple of this household.

In other news:

I went to Starbucks today and I was like a complete culchie ordering and the man looked at me like I had two heads.  Combination of not having gone to Starbucks for a million years because I live in Key West (hello, Cuban Coffee Queen) and the pandemic.

Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh died today. 
This lead to a what's app discussion between Enid, Alice and I about Megan Markle's wedding dress compared to Beatrice (above) and Eugenie.  Eugenie being the winner and Megan coming in waaaaaaay last. (boringly conservative and ill fitting/unfinished looking).

I am delighted for my good friends in Dionne Warwick's band to see plans to tour again.  And they will be going to Dublin! Wonderful.

Tuesday 6 April 2021

Easter Sunday dinner (very little photos!)

 We decided that we would like to do Easter Sunday just ourselves (even though we got a lovely invitation from friends, and thank you for that).  Maybe it is a little bit of Catholic throwback?? Easter is always a big calendar day in Ireland, second to Christmas, and equally in Canada it was always a big deal for Patrick.  It felt like a day for family this year.

We had a lovely day pottering around the house, I cleaned and it made things feel so much nicer, and we did a bit out in the garden as well.  Early afternoon I went downtown on my bike just for the spin and while there I decided I would get us a nice appetizer/starter for dinner. 

I went into Faustos and got some lovely pate (or pork, chicken liver and truffle mousse as they call it) and some classic Carr's crackers.

When Patrick saw it he decided to put a bottle of prosecco on ice for dinner which was a good idea and indeed very nice!

My Easter crockery which I use all year round got an appropriate season use today lol!

No more photos :(
No photo of the main which was a fab seafood pasta (shrimp and lobster). Accompanied by the crisp chilled prosecco. 
And a sharing dessert of Cadburys chocolate egg!

A really, lovely Easter Sunday

Easter bunny visited

Happy Easter!

I made a little hamper for my work colleagues.  Hershey eggs, Reeses peanut butter cups and Peeps. We don't have Peeps in Ireland and my sisters and I are a bit intrigued/obsessed about them. ("Describe what they taste like" they ask me).

Easter Sunday morning! The Easter bunny arrived!
I gave Patrick the Cadburys buttons egg (yes, which someone had given me, but come on! It's Cadburys.  A regift of Cadburys is immeasurable).  He knows I love a chocolate bunny and this year he got me TWO! One of them, he said, "look, it comes with a little hat you can wear"

The "hat"!!!!
Ahahahahahahhahahahah.  So funny.  

Saturday 3 April 2021

Covid Vaccine

 I feel really lucky.  The first shot of my the two step vacccine (Pfizer) is in my arm.  I am the first person of my immediate family to get, which seems a little unfair but that is the way it is: it is pretty shambolic in Ireland at the moment.  My 92 year old grandmother has got it, but my mam and dad (early/mid 70's) are still waiting.

I've always been a fan of the regular flu vac.  In a blog post from 2012, I talk about getting it in work, and I continued with this yearly until I left Irish Life in November 2018.  This was a very similar process. It felt slightly quicker and less sore going in than I expected.  Going to bed that night my arm was a little tender for sleeping on (I took a tylenol) and then next day in work it was a little sore when I lifted it to a certain height.  That was it.  They say there are more side effects and reactions from the 2nd one, so we will see.

And the further good news is that Patrick has an appointment for his first one on Monday.  His mam and dad got their first one in Canada yesterday and I am happy about that.  A little bit like Ireland though, Canada is struggling. Instead of getting their 2nd one in three weeks time (like we will), Canada has decided that they will get that in a few months - instead they will focus on getting as many first doses into as many arms as possible.  I'm not sure I agree with this, but hey, what do I know!

Do I look a bit teary-eyed?  Yeah, that is because I was a bit teary-eyed.

Happy, and grateful, driving home!  Thank you Science