Having taken most of December catching up on November I don't really want to take most of January catching up on December. So, here is a brief summary of the highlights...
Scrabble: Four Nations Scrabble Tourney
My first 'cap' for Scotland. This year was the Irish turn to host. I had a very enjoyable long weekend in Dublin. On the Saturday evening a few of us got a taxi into the city centre...
On the scrabble front England won easily, Ireland just scraping second place from Scotland by one point. Lewis Mackay (England) put in a great performance, winning all 12 games, to snatch the highest rated player trophy at the end of the year. Wayne came second in the tourney with 10 wins and I was third with 9 wins. I finished second in the ratings, yet again, as Brett and Wale above me had not played enough games in the year to qualify.
Well, I have achieved something in flower every day in the year. Despite the extremely heavy frosts we had around Christmas the mahonias and hellebores are still blooming.
We came back after one shopping trip to find white footprints in the hall that I had cleaned the day before. In the middle of the rug in the lounge was a bag of flour that Poncho had retrieved from the kitchen!
Jen decided to eat the display cabinet whilst we were out at the Berwick bridge club Christmas party...
The dogs have enjoyed a few runs in Margaret's field. Indeed, Poncho had a whale of a time on one occasion running through the long frosty grass trying to find hares. What is normally a half-hour walk became over an hours outing as he was enjoying himself too much. Paul had just caught him when a hare popped up, and he broke free again. Luckily the hare managed a quick escape through the gate.
On Christmas day we had just got them back on the lead when four deer came running through the field a few yards away from us. Luckily the dogs didn't see them.
We had a quiet Christmas, just us and the dogs. Paul took the dogs out first thing and then we opened our stockings. Dog run. Roast pork followed by Christmas pud for lunch, eaten in the dining room. Short dog walk. Settled down to watch Casino Royale in the afternoon, and then we opened our prezzies.
Allan and Gilli invited us around for drinks on the 27th.
Pauls parents arrived on the afternoon of the 29th, and we had invited friends and neighbours around in the evening for drinks and nibbles.
I decided to make salmon pate as we had a large pack in the freezer. I knew Jean made mackerel pate using hummus, but could find no recipe on the internet. I decided to phone Jean and get the recipe. She wasn't sure if it would work for smoked salmon but I decided to give it a go.
200 grammes smoked salmon, blitzed in food processor
150 grammes hummus
150 grammes Philli cheese
Just all mixed together with a fork and then put in a bowl in the fridge.
Jean's recipe also included one ounce of melted butter to help bind it together, but I forgot about this despite weighing it out, and it seemed fine without it... It did get Jean's approval :)
Hogmanay was quiet, although we did all stay up with a bottle of champagne, watching Jools's Hootenany. Nobody came first footing.
Paul's parents left this morning so we are now back to normal, barring the large amount of cakes/biscuits/chocolates etc. that need to be eaten before the diet starts again...
The trials and tribulations of a life of leisure...
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