198 – I’m not dead

Yes, it’s been ten days since my last post – partly because I’ve been avoiding you and partly because it’s been school holidays and I just kinda let everything slide…

So, how to begin – to catch you up or just fill in the gaps? Well you don’t need the minutiae of my days and frankly they are only interesting to me and mine – you know what school holidays with bored kids are like – you swing from moments of hysterical joy (oh my god the zoo for the third time I’m SO EXCITED! We have zoo passes – they are seriously the best xmas gift ever) to moments of pure hell (OH MY GOD WHY ARE WE AT THE ZOO AGAIN?!). The kids are randomly best friends and mortal enemies and those of us that normally work but have the pleasure of being at home with our little cherubs begin to remember and appreciate why we work in the first place.

The middle of the year holidays are extra special in our house because of all the birthdays. Mine, my Stepdad’s, my Mums and my eldest son (Mum and T are on the same day). This means that the grumpy Dutchman is extra grumpy and stressed because of the gift buying, the family time is extra intense and at some point I have to plan and run a birthday event for the child. Also this time round the Aussie Dutchies are here so it’s been cool to meet my youngest niece and hang with them briefly. Suffice to say that though I don’t tend to feel ‘rested’ at the end of the winter break.

Anyway – why have I been avoiding you? Did you notice that? Well. You know how I’m a stubborn biatch and I have been struggling with the sugar and shite? But really proud that I had managed to not drink? Sooooooo. This is awkward.

I’m just gonna come out and say it. I had a glass of wine (or two) on my birthday. Because it was MY FUCKING BIRTHDAY damnit and I was feeling old. I know. I know. But the plan that I had to go to a beach with the GD and the dog to watch the sunset didn’t pan out because I spent so long on the motorway driving home from dropping the lads off to be babysat. And there is less sugar in red wine that birthday cake. And all sorts of other bloody justifications. And because wine is so damned good.

I spent all day thinking about it. Swinging wildly between NO because I didn’t want to break my record and YES because it’s MY BIRTHDAY. I chose yes.

It was very nice to be out with the GD on an actual date (thanks Mum) just hanging out with each-other. We managed to not talk about the kids for ages. I was managing to keep the GD interested in me and not the bookshelf behind me (only just). So I had a grown up glass of wine and it was lovely.

And then I woke up in the morning and felt terrible. Not only did I have a headache from the wine that I’m not used to but I just felt so disappointed that I had broken the record. That I had let it go after 7 months of abstaining. And how was I going to blog about it!? The horror. I whinged to the GD and my bff and both told me to pull my head in; reminded me that I’m not an alcoholic and that the not-drinking was self imposed (that I’d broken every other self-imposed rule) and that I was a grown up who could celebrate her birthday like a bloody grown up. That was me told. So I stayed in bed watching Grace and Frankie until lunchtime (the kids were at Mums after all) and tried to get over myself.

I still feel a wee bit disappointed. I won’t be able to proudly boast ‘not for the whole YEAR’ now and sit back all smug when people look AMAZED at my fortitude but I am learning to live with it. Ha ha what a dick.

The holidays have been great though for family time and outdoorsy pursuits. I had a good go at being sugar-free for the first week and was dealing with the headaches and loading up on lots of veges like a good girl but tbh we knew that was going to go out the window for my birthday didn’t we? Am back on that wagon now though. As of tomorrow. I promise. Obvs no more wine too. I managed to go to school and get some much-needed marking done in between hanging with lads, and I have been getting my 10 – 12,000 steps in most days.

I still don’t feel that prepared for school though. I have that sick feeling in my stomach thinking about it. But that’s normal right? The plan is to food shop tomorrow for all the good stuff. To plan my lessons for the first three days of the week and to pack my lunches so I’m prepared for the sugar cravings.

Well laid plans. Here are some holiday pics,

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123 days. One third of the way through.

Wowsers. I am one third of the way through my year of trying to heal my gut. And although things haven’t been quite the same since Easter (ahem) I am confident that I am on to a good thing. And I am this close to jumping back on the wagon again, I promise. Particularly as, when my youngest drew me today, he drew me complete with a ‘food baby’. I believe the universe is trying to tell me something.

So in order to go out with a bang, and to scratch a ‘try something new’ itch, I tried a new recipe today – for a cake – which is off the list I know, but it was a request – and who am I to turn down a request for cake?!

It’s called the ‘Magic cake’ and it is pretty cool. Whilst baking it separates and ‘magically’ forms a custard layer on the bottom and a sponge layer on the top. I was skeptical but it was surprisingly easy and straightforward. I got the recipe from a ‘Made that way‘ post on facebook and she got it from ‘Kitchen Nostalgia‘.

Anyhoo, here is the recipe;

magic-cake1a-wKN

Ingredients
  • 4 eggs, separated, at room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons  sugar
  • 125 gms butter, melted
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 2 cups milk, lukewarm
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
 Instructions
  1. Mix egg whites until stiff. (boy my arm got tired at this bit – we have an ‘analogue’ beater – no electric whisk for me!).
  2. In another bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar, water and vanilla until light. Add melted butter and continue beating for another minute. Then add the flour and mix it in.
  3. Add the milk (it has to be lukewarm, otherwise the butter will harden) and beat until well incorporated.
  4. Gently fold in beaten egg whites using a spatula.
  5. Pour batter into a greased 8 inch x 8 inch (20 x 20 cm) baking dish (do not use spring form because batter is too liquid and the pan could leak) and bake in preheated 325 F oven for about 60 minutes or until the top is golden.
  6. Cool in the pan for at least 3 hours. Serve sprinkled with powdered sugar.

It worked! Annoyingly I started making it before I saw that it had to sit for three hours before I could cut it. This made it impossible to take to my grrls house for her and the family (leading to one very disappointed teenage boy, her son) and I only just got to cut it open half an hour ago. And it worked!

It was ok, I think next time I will sprinkle it with lemon juice and granulated sugar while it is cooking – the vanilla was subtle but needed something to lift it – I sprinkled lemon juice over my piece and it definitely improved it.

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IMG_1235   IMG_1236Now I am sitting with my fingernails one third covered in medical tape each, and have painted gold nail polish on them. Going to be totes classy yo.

Have a good weekend – I’ll write again tomorrow!