Thursday, 25 August 2016

A scratch meal

Being so hot the other day, I really didn't feel like slaving in a hot kitchen. I had chosen to make a small panful of courgette and pea soup for lunch, mainly because we didn't have any bread so thought this would help fill us!

Come tea time, and the temperature was even hotter. I had a long look inside the fridge to cool down a little and found a courgette:
Two bratwurst:
Three ladlefuls of the soup:
A small plateful of leftover potato:
The potatoes were gently fried with some more courgette, the soup added, put onto a plate with a small topping of grated cheese and the bratwurst.
It was really tasty and we enjoyed it.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Toilet Brushes and Green Shield Stamps

It is currently 05:20. I woke up at 04:20, hot and bothered, the bedroom temperature being 24C, despite having both the window and curtains open and it being far cooler outside! The birds have just started singing, the clouds are red pink with the rising sun and other than me and one or two neighbours both front and back, all was quiet. Unfortunately, the blasted pigeons have just started up. Gee, they are so noisy.

On our quest to sort out the toilet, and buy a new toilet brush, we noticed again, how things have changed.

Once upon a time, there would be oodles of brushes to choose from, in differing styles and colours to match your bathroom. All hardware shops and department stores, appeared to sell them.

This time we had a real struggle. Most supermarkets and shops sold just one, two if really lucky. Most were in machine pressed metal which looked cheap and nasty and quite frankly, not up to the job with a silly little brush and thin handles. In the end, we went to A-g-s where they had 19 to choose from and duly selected.

Did you know that this shop was formed by the founder of the Green Shield Stamps shops? No, neither did we. Here is a brief history

Who remembers Green Shield Stamps, available from various shops although I only remember them in T-s-o shops?

My sister H., used loads of books of these stamps (physically given out with your shopping, in a similar method to electronic points today). They were used to buy kettles, toasters, cooking implements, pans, pots, and a myriad of other items. Her husband was a heavy smoker and reams of these use to pour out the till when they shopped. Licking sheets of them into a book, then keeping those books safe until exchange time, was quite an operation.

Sometimes, you would only get one or two of them and keeping them safe until you got home and could stick them into the book was quite a task. Ah well.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

The smell detectives!

For quite a few days now, we have had a horrible smell emanating from the bathroom. As we have previously had problems with both the drains in the sink and bath, we tackled those first with washing soda crystals and boiling water. No joy! Then bicarbonate of soda and vinegar - again - no joy!

Nowt for it but to dismantle and clean out the pipes - bit of a smell but nothing too drastic. Put back together and sorted out various tiny leaks for a while - no improvement. Toilet brush was old and smelly so that also went.

One morning, DB thought it was coming from the toilet which I didn't believe as we have bleach blocks in the cystern and descaler is regularly applied under the rim and below the water line. Silly me - he was quite right - very odd though that despite those, it should be smelling.

He checked the cistern first to make sure it wasn't the source of the problem, no, it smelled clean. We both stuck our heads down the loo and the smell was most definately there.

Taking a leaf out of Wendy Gower's 'cleaning the toilet post', he donned rubber gloves, and using neat bleach and an old dish sponge, set to scrubbing as hard as he could under the rim. We live in a very hard water area and he could feel loads of limescale stuck under there. The bleach stayed in place for about 10 minutes, before being flushed away. Quite a bit better.

Then he repeated the scrubbing with limescale remover. Again left for 10 minutes before flushing away. Smell gone.

This morning no smell at all so that was the source. Anyway, after the sponge was thrown away, rubber gloves washed, dried and put into a plastic bag for future use, we decided to repeat maybe every month or two.