Friday, August 7, 2015

Rocking Your World 2015: Week 32

Well I guess week thirty-two of this year will go down as one of the most uneventful weeks since I came out here! The main reason is this continuous heat which makes the idea of doing anything, seem like one too many mountains to climb. Of course if I had something that I needed to do, or an event I committed to a while ago, then I would find the energy to do it, but right now I have no commitments so I am making the most of some time to relax, and being very grateful for that.
I have to say that this week has been reminiscent of my holiday in Thailand, because it is so very humid, but I much prefer the usual dry heat we have in Spain.
This week although there have been periods of sunshine, most days have been partially overcast, and several times I have looked forward to a refreshing storm, only for it to rumble around the mountains in the distance, but never quite reach us.
According to a local weather station this was the hottest July since they started keeping records thirty years ago, and especially the hottest nights.
So I am truly grateful that I am able to sleep at night despite the heat. Many of our friends struggle with it, but as long as I cool the bedroom down for half an hour before bedtime, and have a late night dip in the pool, then, as long as I drop off to sleep quickly, I usually sleep right through until the morning.

Once again I have done a lot of reading. I am right into a trilogy about a family of Irish immigrants living in post-war Liverpool, and I love following all their lives through the years. I am just coming to the end of the second book and I know I will go straight into book three. I just have to make sure I have done any urgent chores before I pick it up each day, because once I start reading, nothing else gets done. I spotted a little poem about this on the internet this week, and it certainly struck a chord with me, and I daresay you can relate to it too.

But I haven´t only been reading. I have started to sort through all the new craft stash that I have accumulated, I made a birthday card for later this month, and today I made two Christmas cards. How bizarre is that when it is the middle of a heat-wave?!

I also made some of my now-famous piccalilli. Thanks to my blogland friend Di who provided the original recipe, though I have ´doctored´ it a bit. My kitchen faces west, so by the afternoon, the sun is streaming in, and even with the blinds down and the shutters closed, it is too hot in there to consider cooking. So we have our main meal at lunch-time, and I knew I would need to get up early one morning to boil up the pickle. We don´t actually eat a lot of pickles ourselves, especially not piccalilli, but it has proved one of my best sellers, second only to bitter orange marmalade, and several people had ordered it in advance, so I thought I should really make the effort, and get it done. The vegetables need to be prepared the night before, and sprinkled with salt until the next day, so on Tuesday evening I loaded up a tray with knives, cutting mats, bowls, and a damp cloth for sticky fingers, plus a bag of veggies and one for the rubbish, and I took myself out into the fly-free porch. I had my swimsuit on so I could dip in  and out of the pool every time I needed a break, and a glass of tinto verano for refreshment, and so around midnight, my piccalilli was prepared. The next morning it was soon rinsed and cooked, and bottled up and quite a lot of it has sold already.
I had to smile as the dogs prowled around me hoping I´d drop a little morsel for them, but when I only dropped some raw onion, they went away in disgust!

I thought I had lost my beautiful friend Tango this
week. He is nearly always somewhere around the house, or on a bench just outside, and he always comes in at night, but one evening he failed to come when I called him in for his supper. I kept trying, but in the end I had to go to bed, confident that he would be there next morning, but he wasn´t. Altogether he was missing for thirty-six hours, then suddenly he just turned up again, and I was so happy to see him. He is so laid back, and has such a gentle nature, and I would be so very sad to lose him.

One other thing to be very grateful for this week was a trip to the doctor for the results of my annual blood test. She was very pleased with me and said my blood-sugar control was much better than last year, so I can stay on just half a tablet twice a day, and I am off the statins altogether which I am very happy about. My aim is to get completely off the diabetic tablets too, but little steps....

I am afraid I don´t even have a pretty sky for you this week. Overcast skies each day don´t lend themselves to lovely sunsets.
So that is it from me this week. Do join in with your happy pictures/events, at Annie´s Friday Smiles, or pop over to Virginia´s blog and tell us what you are grateful for this week. Share the love!


  1. Even on your quiet weeks you can still make us smile Kate. I'm so very glad Tango returned home....I'd have missed him too.
    Elizabeth has told me that my plant is a Lobelia x speciosa 'Hadspen Purple'....I've checked it out online and I'm pretty sure she's right. I didn't realise you could get Lobelias so big and only knew of them as the small blue summer bedding plants that my Dad used to grow. I am really enjoying finding out what we have inherited in this garden of ours :-)
    Have a good week and stay cool.
    Annie x

  2. Hehehe it seems I was typing on your blog while you were typing on mine :-)
    Annie x

  3. Well done for getting all those vegetables cut up in the excessive heat. I love the poem and can certainly relate to that, and I am glad that Tango turned up, I wonder what he had been doing.
    Jean x

  4. Oh my sweet friend! Do you mean you use my piccalilli recipe?!?!? Or is it another Di? How delighted I would be Kate if it was to be mine :)

    Lovely post, as always - tee, hee - I wish I could be preparing veggies in my cossie.

    Well done on the docs results - am going through a lot of tests etc. right now and know only too well what a lift a good result can bring.

    Love and hugs

    Di xx

  5. Wow - living in the uk - I can only imagine sitting on a porch in a swimsuit :) Lovely to get good results back for your blood test. My daughter is type 1 and is so happy when her visit to the clinic is a good one :)Have a great week. soojay 8

  6. What a lovely post. I so enjoyed reading about your life in Spain. I loved the poem. I tend mainly to read in bed at night before I go to sleep these days. I love the photo of you cutting up all those veggies and what a size they are. That red pepper is huge. I love picalili and the marmalade sounds delicious. We lost our dog almost two years ago but she loved raw fruit and always hung around when I was preparing them. Her favourites were peppers and sprouts, would you believe.

    I'm so glad Tango turned up safe and sound. I wonder what he'd been up to. He is a beautiful cat. I imagine he must feel the heat with that lovely thick coat of his.


  7. Oh Kate that sounds awful - how about we swap some of our cold ( nearly snowing here) for some of your heat :-). So glad to hear you cat turned up - it's horrible when they go missing...
    You and I are the same when it comes to books :-), and that poem is so true.

  8. p.s. - have you ever thought of having Tango;s tummy shaved at the beginning of summer - my friend here does that with her very long haired cat in late spring.

  9. I was thrilled to read that Tango is back safe and sound with you. That put a smile on my face.

    I was really impressed with the veggies. Famous piccalilli? Sounds wonderful.

    Thanks for visiting while I was out. Have a lovely weekend.

  10. Well done with your blood checks - it takes a huge effort to get those levels down so that's a brilliant achievement. Your piccallili making brought back happy memories of Mum - she loved filling the pantry shelves ready for Christmas and I well remember the wonderfully pickley aroma filling our little house! Thanks for sharing. x Jo

  11. Hi Kate, oh I am feeling for you with the heat, it can be really draining, but is a good excuse to just relax with a the poem. Long day (nearly 10 hours) for us but we have arrived safely with plants and cats in good order. My garden here is suffering so I'm glad it's only 3 weeks till the final pack and move. Hope you're enjoying your weekend Robyn

  12. Glad your test results were good x

  13. What a lovely post. I'm so glad your results were good and the doc is happy (and so are you).
    Well done you for making the piccallilly. Yes, it is sooo hot here too. It did actually rain wednesday and yesterday and caused a bit of a flash flood as it was quite a lot. But it's the humidity that is the killer.
    Glad you got Tango back. He/she is a beauty!
    I read a lot too and I smiled at that little poem. So true.
    Tell me about your fly-free porch. How do you keep it fly-free? Is it mozzie screened completely?
    Thanks for commenting Friday and sorry for being so late myself. (I got busy). I actually wrote a reply under your comment. Don't know if you saw it...
    Have a good week,

  14. It still sounds like an eventful week to me! Loving the fact you were sorting the veg late at night, glad you haven't got too many planned activities allowing you to cope with the heat better. We've had a lovely week, got away with the weather (just about) but have arrived home to humidity and heat that we didn't have to contend with earlier in the week. So glad your cat arrived home safely - I was chatting to my sister about the heat you are having to contend with when we were away and how you have your animals hair cut shorter for multiple reasons including contending with the heat! Hope the temperatures start to reduce and you get back to your typical Spanish summer.

    Much love

  15. The weather isn't good here these days....could do with the same storm. It has rained but not enough to clear the air.
    Can't believe you were prepping veg at midnight....yes I can!!
    Great poem.

  16. With that gorgeous fur coat in such heat I bet Tango found a secret cool spot and only came home when he needed food. Don't blame him.
    If you are up for sharing I'd love your piccalilli recipe..... I adore it and would love to make some of your famous popular stuff. Please and pretty please!
    Jo x
    If it's a well kept secret don't worry.
    Wonderful that you can sleep well despite the heat. Stay cool!


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