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What's that noise?

Story location: Home / Blog / food_and_drink /

For the last couple of days, my backpack has made a regular 'thunk' type rattling noise whenever I've walked anywhere. I couldn't work out what it was, and it was starting to get slightly annoying.

I found the cause when I noticed the small plastic tub of digestive biscuits which I'd put in my bag on monday, with the intention of having them during my coffee break. They had turned into a collection of irregularly shaped digestive fragments.

It's not been a good week for forgetting about food.

What's that smell?

Story location: Home / Blog / food_and_drink /

Since monday, there has been a strange 'fart' like smell in the car. We couldn't work out where it was coming from so we sprayed the upholstery with Febreeze to try to remove the smell.

We were at the supermarket this evening and I picked up one of the reusable carrier bags from the car boot. In the bottom of the bag I noticed a pack of mozzarella cheese which had burst open, spilling the cheesy brine all over the inside of the bag.

Mystery solved.

The cheese must have been sitting in the car for over a week. The heat over the weekend will have caused the pack to expand and burst. I rinsed out the bags when we got home, so hopefully that will get rid of the smell.

Wing Wah Dessert Selection

Story location: Home / Blog / food_and_drink /

I like the way Wing Wah have expanded the dessert selection to include a wider range of gateaux and cakes. I like the way they decorated the mini swiss rolls with a blob of cream and a chocolate wafer. I also like the way they put a blob of cream and a raspberry on the jam tart. I don't like the way they decided to add a sprig of parsley to it.

Parsley Tart


Story location: Home / Blog / house /

Our peppers seem to be doing quite well. Most of the bushes have fruit forming. Some of the peppers are about an inch long so hopefully we'll have some ready to eat soon.


A while ago my parents gave us a large tub of soil, which allegedly contained some lilies. Green shoots appeared in the spring which gradually grew. They've now got quite a few large flowers.


Kenilworth Castle

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We took advantage of our English Heritage membership to pay a quick visit to Kenilworth Castle. It was too hot to spend too long wandering around so we'll have to re-visit later in the year, on a cooler day.

The Gatehouse

The Castle Ruins

More Castle Ruins

We also had a quick walk around Kenilworth itself, and passed the new Waitrose, which were were told opens on thursday.

I wonder if the Earth has shifted on its axis

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The weather has been a bit odd recently. The days have started off fairly cool in the mornings. It usually starts to warm up after lunch, but the temperature peaks at around 6pm.

I shouldn't complain. At least it's getting warmer now it's supposed to be summer.

Festival of History

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The English Heritage Festival of History covers 2000 years of British history. Most of the displays are military, probably because it leads to a more dramatic show.

In addition to the big displays, there was a historic market where you could buy traditional clothing, games, tableware.


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Garlic Part 2

Story location: Home / Blog / house /

I don't think the garlic farmers need to start worrying yet. We cooked with the home grown garlic today. The cloves were very small - I'm sure the whole bulb was smaller than the clove I planted last year.

The garlic itself smelt reasonably pungent - not quite as 'garlicky' as the Tesco Organic garlic (which has a much better 'fresh garlic' smell than their normal stuff).

home grown garlic

Bacon is not a Vegetable

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Seen in a shop at a motorway service station on the M1:

Bacon is not a vegetable

Yes we have no bananas

New Roborovski Hamster

Story location: Home / Blog / Hamsters /

We've got a new roborovski hamster, to replace Alysia (aka Big Silly), who died on saturday, aged 2½.

We haven't decided on a name yet. She's been living with Ruby (aka Babykin) for a day now and they've been getting along well so far.

Baby (right) and Friend (left)


Story location: Home / Blog / house /

Last year I planted some garlic cloves. They weren't bought to grow, they were just ones from the kitchen which had started to sprout. They are supposed to be ready to harvest once the stalks have started to dry. I noticed that they had dried and withered this morning so I decided to harvest them.

The bulbs seem a little small and only seem to consist of a couple of small cloves each.

Apparently the best time to plant garlic is the autumn, so I'll be giving it another go later in the year.


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We were away at the weekend, up north to a friends wedding. The drive up was terrible - the M6 was a slow crawl nearly all the way from Birmingham up to Junction 17, where the motorway was closed due to an accident.

We stopped at Stafford Services on the way, and had a walk by the lake.

Stafford Services geese

Stafford Services Lake

The wedding went well. Despite all the rain, it stayed dry for the photos after the service. The reception was held in a marquee at the groom's parent's farm. We were supposed to be camping in a nearby field overnight but we had to delay pitching out tent thanks to the non-stop rain this morning. We managed to get the tent erected in the afternoon but it needed both of us - one to stop the tent blowing away while the other pushed the tent pegs into the ground.

Bobwhite Quail

Story location: Home / Blog / quail /

We obtained some Bobwhite Quail last weekend. During the week we built another quail run for them to live in - this means we've lost even more of the garden now. If we want to sit out, there's a small area between the quail and the vegetables.

Bobwhite Quail

The bobwhites make an interesting sound - they sometimes sound like an old shortwave radio being tuned in.