Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Hardly any days left!

Christmas is now hurtling at us like a freight train, but I think we are nearly ready - except for the last of the food!

Cards are sent, presents, except for a few stocking fillers, are bought and around half of them wrapped. Yep, we are getting there!

Food wise, we are switching back to a routine that we had a few years back.

On Christmas Eve we do a large gammon and eat this with cheese, rice and fresh home made rolls. This is something that we all enjoy - quite an achievement in our house!

On Christmas Day we do not have a set meal, but allow everyone to eat tons of biscuits, chocolate, etc, and then cook a series of savoury things throughout the day to be eaten as a buffet. We find that this works well as it means that we are not telling the kids to leave the goodies alone all day, not dishing up a huge meal when no one is actually hungry and finally not slaving in the kitchen when there is fun to be had elsewhere!

Boxing Day sees the big dinner, but instead of the massive ostrich sized turkey that we often feel obliged to buy we are either having a variety of other meat - beef, pork and duck - or an alternative that the kids like the sound of is to cook a batch of small chickens and have one each! We will see how it turns out!

Most of all we are hoping that the holiday will give us time to relax and get ourselves sorted out physically and emotionally to take on 2008 - who knows what that will have in store for us?

This might be my last post of the year - if it is I wish you a wonderful Christmas and a fantastic New Year. May all your wishes, dreams and prayers come true in 2008.

Love and hugs (if appropriate)

Rock Chef

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Thinking of S-E-X as a running race...

Guys, picture this.

You are at the race track, all geared up in your shorts, shirt and spikes ready for a race. You persuade a lovely female runner to race with you. She agrees and off you go, pelting down the track as fast as your legs can carry you. You hurtle around the track and complete the lap just as she finishes getting organised on the starting blocks. She is ready to go and you are just not ready to go round again - not JUST yet anyway!

Do this too often and no one will want to race you, will they?

Familiar? I hope not, but if it is, read on.

Here are a few hints that will make running with you more appealing:
  • Do not try to "win" the race.
  • Give the other runner a head start - warm up on the start line for a while so she can at least get going before you set off after her. Letting her complete a couple of laps first will make her much more likely to want to race you again.
  • When you finally do set off, don't sprint, pace yourself. Soldiers often use a mix of jogging and fast walking to allow them to cover very long distances without tiring...
  • Remember that you will probably only get to do one lap without a good rest, so try to make sure that you both cross the finish line at the same time.
  • You may find that, after all this the other runner is all fired up for another lap or two. Do what you can to make sure she succeeds. Again, this will make her more likely to want to race you again.

That is all for today.

Happy racing everyone!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Another odd dream...

Well, Saturday saw the final of the UK X-Factor competition - a show where they try to find a new pop superstar, or at least someone that will guarantee Simon Cowell the Christmas Number 1 slot!

The final three were a very strange Welshman (in white), a young Scot who was good at singing like Frank Sanatra (in black) and a brother-sister act (called Same Difference) who were like High School Musical meets Donny and Marie meeting happy pills (oh come on, you really need to be told which ones they are?). Of the three they were by far the most entertaining, but they came 3rd. My kids were incensed. The show is about pop music and these two were about as pop music as it comes, but no, the Scottish crooner won.

We watched something else, I finished my bottle of wine, had a bath and headed for bed.

I then had the same dream 3 times in a row!

I had won the lottery (a rollover, so it was a big one) and had asked the kids what they really wanted for Christmas. The unanimous decision was that they wanted Same Difference to be number 1 for Christmas, so I had arranged and paid for them to release a CD!

3 times I dreamed that!

On Sunday morning, I checked my numbers and found that - I hadn't won a penny, so it was, as they say, just a dream. Oh well.

Friday, December 14, 2007

It doesn't get much better than this...

Here I sit, doing light, untaxing work, with a slice of Christmas cake and a bottle of Coke nearby, and "A Christmas Story" playing on a computer. Check out Terri's post on this movie!

Life is good.

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Well Christmas is well and truly on its way - the weather has snapped to beautifully clear skies, no wind and very low temperatures. Frost was forming as I walked the dog at 7.30pm yesterday and feathery strands of freezing fog floated in the air. I felt like Shaggy with Scooby-Doo!

Last night was also the High School Prize Giving ceremony and my oldest son won his year prize for computing and also the "Best in Year" award. It was so good to see him going up onto the stage to get his prizes, [end of proud parent's rambling on].

Now that we have money again, I was able to spend lunch dashing around grabbing some presents, somehow managing to find everything I was looking for and get something to eat into the bargain!

Hey, things must really be looking up - I have actually managed to write some cards (well 3 actually) too! Amazing! Now I just have to knuckle down and do the rest!

Not long left now:

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Santa Claus IS coming to town...

Well, now that the crisis is over, I think I can talk about it. This was the final straw last week when I wrote about the world crapping on my head...

We were contacted by the Taxman - we owe him a ton of money and can we pay it back?

No we don't owe him any money and no, we couldn't pay that back right now even if we wanted to! He then agreed that it was a mistake, in fact he owes US money! He will try to sort it out as soon as possible.

Well, after a week with no money (their original mistake caused a total screw up with the bank) they have finally sorted it out - we have money, we can afford Christmas, Santa IS coming to town!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Santa Pooh's Grotto

I finally got started on the Christmas decorations. The main focus was setting up my older daughter's Winnie the Pooh tree in our front porch. My daughter was a Pooh fanatic, even when she was ill in hospital, at the age of 17, her Pooh Bear blankets, pajamas, hair bands, etc, were her trade mark with the nurses.

We only blocked this in during the summer so it is the first time we have decorated it.

The final addition was her biggest Pooh wearing my old Santa outfit:

Pooh Bear's Grotto is complete. My wife has done the living room. I still have to finish the hall and diningroom...

Friday, December 07, 2007

An evening stroll with the dog

Last night I took Custard out for rather longer than usual.

To start with I had to pop to my Mom's house to collect the food for her pony - she had a fall the other day and has not been able to get out since, so I have been feeding per pony, Humphrey, each morning on my way to work.

While there, Custard had is first encounter with cats inside a house. He put up his hackles, bouced around and woofed, but they just looked down their noses at him and snuggled deeper into the chairs.

After leaving mom's house I headed for the beach. It was a very nice evening, the wind had dropped,the sky was clear with lots of stars, and the beach was not far away. It was a wonderful view - to the East was the main seafront of the town with its amusement arcades, leisure centre, clock tower, etc all lit up like, well like a British seaside town, I guess! To the North, out in the Thames estuary were white lights indicating where the ships were and red light announcing the off shore wind farm that we have got. Finally, to the West I could see the lights of other towns - Whitstable, The Isle of Sheppey and the distant glow in the sky that marked Chatham and Rochester. We strolled along the prom for a mile or so, Custard enjoying the new smells, I having a nostalgia trip back to my youth when I would walk this path on a daily basis.

We reached a point that jutted into the sea, at which point a line of rocks ran out for a further few hundred yards. I could hear the water gurgling and swashing over them. Funny. As a kid, those rocks seemed so massive when we climbed on them, but they are actually only a couple of feet high! I guess everything seems huge when you are tiny!

Then we ambled back home, Custard draining his water bowl while I hunted for a cold beer.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

The 3 bears................the real story

A far more accurate account of the events of that fateful morning.....

Baby bear goes downstairs, sits in his small chair at the table, and he looks into his small bowl. It is empty. "Who's been eating my porridge?" he squeaks.

Daddy Bear arrives at the big table and sits in his big chair. He looks into his big bowl and it is also empty. "Who's been eating my porridge?!?" he roars.

Mummy Bear puts her head through the serving hatch from the kitchen and yells, "For God's sake, how many times do we have to go through this with you idiots?

It was Mummy Bear who got up first.

It was Mummy Bear who woke everyone in the house.

It was Mummy Bear who made the coffee.

It was Mummy Bear who unloaded the dishwasher from last night and put everything away.

It was Mummy Bear who went out in the cold early morning air to fetch the newspaper and croissants.

It was Mummy Bear who set the damn table.

It was Mummy Bear who put the bloody cats out, cleaned the litter boxes, gave the cats their food, and refilled their water. And now that you've decided to drag your sorry bear-asses downstairs and grace Mummy Bear with your grumpy presence, listen carefully, because I'm only going to say this once.....................................................................


(Made me smile anyway!)

Monday, December 03, 2007


Over the years that have been a range of scandals affecting sports of various types - steroid abuse and match/race fixing being the first to come to mind.

European soccer is currently under scrutiny for match fixing. Now I am not a fan of soccer and do not really care if the matches are fixed or not, but if things are going to be fixed they might as well do it in style! Let's look at what the next World Cup Final could look like...

Well, Bob, it looks like England are about to lose out to their old rivals, Germany.

Yes, Jerry, it is 1970 all over again, England just can't keep up with this German squ-

Hold on there, Bob, I don't believe what I am seeing here, but the Germans seem to have 6 balls on the pitch at the same time, the English don't have a chance now! The goalie just can't stop 6 balls at once.

Come on, where is the ref? He is being distracted by the German manager and his two sexy young girlfriends...

[Loud rock music starts]

Whoa! What's happening now? Bob, is this what I think it is?

Yes, Jerry, it is! The American team has come onto the pitch too and is helping out the English team! I haven't seen anything like this before! The Special Relationship really IS unshakable!

Oh no, Bob, I can't look! The German substitutes have now gone onto the pitch, and they hav got FOLDING CHAIRS!!!!!

There, now wouldn't that be much more fun?