It seems that it’s going to be a riot at Saskia’s on Saturday – everyone I see or speak to (Jane Opposite, Lydia, Marjorie Stewart, Eliza) have been invited and are all “dead keen” on seeing what Ms Summers has to offer them. All except Janey, who said rather forcefully “I can’t even look at a banana these days let alone think of anything going near my Minnie”. Such a pity, Darren’s taken on the look of a beleaguered blood hound and is looking forward to his paternity leave finishing. Janey’s doing well, she’s up and dressed every morning which is more than I managed for the first couple of months. David said he got so sick of the sight of my pyjamas that he was all for burning them when I finally progressed onto trackie bottoms and T-shirts.
Scarlett is absolutely gorgeous and is, Janey says, the perfect baby. She sleeps when she’s supposed to and doesn’t do any of that high pitched screaming “that other babies do”. Outings have been less successful “by the time I got her ready, got myself ready, packed what I needed to pack and double checked everything I was too knackered to leave the house”. I remember it well. On David’s first solo outing to the little green round the corner with a five month old Mackenzie I weighed him and the buggy down with so much stuff he looked like a pack horse and only managed to get to the end of the road before heading home again.
My phone problems are on the verge of being resolved so I won’t say too much in case the good people at my mobile phone provider are listening and put a spoke in the wheel. I spoke to five people yesterday, all in the same department, and all giving me contradictory advice. I was fit to be tied by 6pm and had to have a strong cup of tea and a flapjack to calm myself down. Why, oh why did I sign up to an 18 month contract? To get a phone that’s so sodding fashionable, so up to the minute it freaks itself out at the mere thought of doing anything remotely phone-like and has to have a lie down every now and again, complete with eye mask and ear plugs. There’s a lot to be said for the sturdy brick like phones favoured by people “over a certain age”. Still, it won’t stop me embracing my all singing, all dancing new snazzy fashionable handset if/when it arrives.
Amelia has “suggested” that I take her to Stansted on Monday morning to catch her flight. I was all for dropping her off at Liverpool Street but no, she wants door to door service and I’m working myself up into a frenzy of panic about it already. Sat nav or no sat nav, I’m a wuss when it comes to going places I’ve never been to before. I’ve got no idea how her travelling companion will be getting to the airport and I’m afraid to ask in case I have to go to Stansted via Sevenoaks. Still, there are compensations. My mother in law being in a whole other country being the chief one.
I had a challenging day yesterday, food-wise, when my slo-cooker failed to cook, slowly or otherwise. Therefore, the lovingly prepared beef stew that I bunged, erm, placed into its capacious pan at ten past nine in the morning was still in its uncooked state at 5pm when I decided to have a sneaky peak. Nothing else was defrosted and I couldn’t see David embracing a ham salad for dinner so Mac and I hotfooted it to the butchers on Nunhead Lane and demanded meat. On the walk home we discussed why lamb is called lamb but mutton is really sheep. This is what you get for being open and honest with your children. Still, lamb is what we had and very nice it was too, even when Mac said “if this lamb wasn’t cooked, when it got bigger it would be a mutton daddy”
Today I was mooching around wondering what the hell to cook for dinner tomorrow when Silvana came to my rescue with this recipe. It takes, as Mac would say “long and lots of time” but the heavenly smells currently emanating from the kitchen mean it’s oh so worth it. It already smells better than the last lasagne I made which my mum said could be used as a doorstop. The thought of making it even propelled me to Sainsburys New Cross to get what bits I needed. In midweek and everything. And I remembered to pick Mac up on my way back! However, David has just called to say that he won’t be home for dinner so the beef stew from yesterday (now cooked to a turn) is for Mac and I only. My poor husband has to entertain a gang (Clutch? Gaggle?) of Japanese businessmen this evening and they all – as a man – want to head off into Soho for the evening. David is risking it by taking them to Chinatown and hoping for the best. I fear a diplomatic incident but he’s promised to return with a doggy bag so I shall keep schtum.
My own plans for our visitors from across the seas are coming along nicely. The money (omiword!) has been deposited in my account and is sitting there, glowing at me. Charlie has agreed to be my deputy tour guide and keeps emailing me links to various touristy places to “gen up on it all, you don’t want to sound like a plank do you?” Don and Lorna arrived in our green and pleasant land on Sunday and are currently rambling around Scotland while I try to remember interesting facts about the Tower of London. Still, it’s something for me to get my teeth into and I’m really enjoying it.
Quite why I couldn’t embrace “The Bloody Tower” when I was twelve and stuck with Mr Marshall’s double History every Tuesday morning will forever be a mystery.