Category Archives: Lifestyle

Food on Friday ~ Weeknights

keep your face towards the sunshine and shadows will fall behind you

Now that the nights are drawing in, we perhaps look for warming, nutritious, comfort food, especially on a weeknight.  After a hard day at work we don’t want to spend too long in the kitchen, and these are all easy weeknight recipes.

First this week from Chungah at Damn Delicious we have a warming Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup.  If you don’t happen to have an instant pot, this recipe is still very easy to make in your regular stock-pot.

Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup

From Jessica Merchant at How Sweet Eats we have this Weeknight Maple Turkey Chili.  Made with ground turkey and served with sliced avocado and egg, this is a really simple and delicious fall staple.

Weeknight Maple Turkey Chili

Amanda at Chez le Rêve Français has a recipe for a fabulous English staple; Chicken and Leek Pie.  I happen to really like this dish, eaten great hot or cold.

Chicken and Leek Pie

Sylvia at Feasting at Home has a collection of globally inspired Fast and Easy Weeknight Dinners.  I very much like the look of this easy Kimchi Fried Rice, a 20 minute vegetarian dinner.

Kimchi Fried Rice

From Delish Magazine we have a collection of 80 easiest weeknight dinners, from which I’ve chosen to feature this dish of Cheesy Baked Meatballs.

Cheesy Baked Meatballs

And also this great looking Caprese Chicken Pasta, ready in just 30 minutes.

Caprese Chicken Pasta

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jack collierjack

collier7@talktalk.net

if in doubt you could always opt for dark beer, bread, and cheese

Mister Cellophane

you can look right through me, pass right by me…..

This is a little sadder song than the Sammy Davis Jr. I posted earlier today, but perhaps this fits my mood better.  From the movie Chicago.

Please listen with a little charity.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

perhaps this is the way I feel today

shipwrecked and alone, counting the days

Mister Bojangles ~ Sammy Davis Jr.

got a song, got a dance, got to dance

This song is cheerful, but not too over the top.  I need a little light music, just to lift the doom and gloom that’s pervading England like some pernicious thorn forest.  Feeling very down and out, so could really use some company today.

There is no sign at all of the very strict lockdown being lifted here.  We can’t even visit friends.

This song and dance is for a very close friend.

Please listen with a smile in your heart.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

at least Marmaduke hasn’t left me

Monochrome Monday ~ Girls

real women are never perfect, and perfect women are never real

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Scenes on Sunday ~ Sea

I must go down to the sea again
to the lonely sea and the sky

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Songs on Saturday ~ Billy Joel

people disappoint, passion is ephemeral, pasta is eternal

A long, long time ago, I can still remember when this music used to make me smile.  That was before I started wearing Italian suits, dated an Italian girl, bought an Italian car, and almost married into the Jacionelli Family.  Suit Ferragamo, Shoes Gucci, Car Alpha Romeo, Girl Sophia, Ice Cream Jacionelli.

Some say that you can’t ever truly know a woman until you’ve taken her out for dinner to your favorite little Italian Restaurant.  And that you will never what she’s going to look like when she’s older until you’ve met her mother.  All I know is that I’d rather have an Alpha Romeo sports car than a Morris Oxford.

History may be repeating itself ~ as history does

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

beautiful, expensive, temperamental

Surviving Disasters

survival is nothing more than recovery

on a cruise, know where your lifeboat station is

Only the very fortunate will not suffer some kind of disaster in their lives.  The very unfortunate may stagger from one disaster to another, with barely enough time and energy to get over one catastrophe before they have to face another.  Some may be forever scarred by one negative experience in their life, while others will survive and thrive no matter what kind of crap the Cosmos throws at them.  One person may never get over a single unhappy love affair, while another will still come out smiling and optimistic after having their heart ripped out by a promiscuous cheating partner.  Some may face ordinary adversity and die, while others will live through the most horrible experiences imaginable.

It’s all a question of attitude and preparedness, the difference between surrender and hope.  You are not who others say you are, you are the sum of your own beliefs.  A man owes very little to what he was born with, a real man makes himself.

Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, about eight minutes without air, but for only one second without hope.  ~  Charles Darwin

Disasters come in many forms, but disaster recovery has only one shape.  Be prepared.  Because one thing is almost certain, one day, in some way, most of us will face a disaster; unemployment, being broke, betrayal, divorce, violence, flood, fire, earthquake, terrorism, wildfires, death of a loved one, critical illness….

You might say; ‘how can anyone prepare for all that….’  or, ‘how can you prepare for a disaster if you don’t know what kind of disaster you are going to have to face…..’  That’s defeatism.  People who talk, think, and believe in those ways are less likely to recover well from a disaster than someone who knuckles down and optimistically gets ready to face whatever fate throws at them.

There are just three rules;

  1. Do not delude yourself.  If you live in an earthquake zone prepare to survive an earthquake.  If you marry a bastard / slut then prepare to end up broke and on the street.  If you set sail on uncharted oceans prepare to get dis-masted and lost.  If you leave a contractor alone in your home expect it to be wrecked when you return.
  2. Be as fit and healthy as you can possibly be in body, mind, spirit, finances, and ‘stuff’.  Work at it.
  3. Learn things.  Read books such as How To Stay Alive by Bear Grylls.  Go to night school to learn car mechanics.  Learn about camping.  Learn how to grow your own food.  Be curious, stop wasting your most valuable commodity; time.

There is a thing called Disaster Shock, and it will kill you ~ the more prepared you are the less likely you will suffer from this and die.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

have your important stuff easily to hand, so you can drive away from a wildfire within minutes

 

 

 

Food on Friday ~ Autumn

fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose

In a couple of days time we will have the Autumn Equinox, the harvests will be taken in, and the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness will be upon us.  I expect that you’re like me and wondering where the year went to, and how come I don’t remember what happened.

I believe that this coming Tuesday September 22nd is a time for me to make a fresh start, throw off the constraints of a summer that didn’t have much good going for it, and begin again.

A good place to start our move into Autumn, or Fall if you will, is with some good food, great recipes, and hopefully some very good company.

First this week we have Chungah at Damn Delicious and her warming, nutritious, delicious One Pot Chicken and Mushroom Orzo.  We all like one pan dishes don’t we?

One Pot Chicken and Mushroom Orzo

Now, Tieghan Gerard at Half Baked Harvest has The 35 Most Popular Fall Recipes.  From this collection I’ve chosen a Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf.

Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf

To go with your chicken, and for the warmer days still to come this year, from Dana at Minimalist Baker we have a Raw Rainbow Veggie Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing.  And, just how pretty is that?

Raw Rainbow Veggie Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing

This is a super collection from Jessica Merchant’s How Sweet Eats; 45 Of My Favorite Fall Dinner Recipes.  With so much to choose from how about a Smoky Pumpkin Bisque with Grilled Cheese Croutons?  You need to keep this recipe by you for Halloween.

Smoky Pumpkin Bisque with Grilled Cheese Croutons

This might almost be the ultimate fall dinner recipe collection ever; from Delish Magazine 61 Unbelievably Easy Fall Dinner Recipes.  From this cornucopia I’ve chosen these Garlic Rosemary Pork Chops.  If you think that pork chops only come in the dry and overcooked variety, then you should try this recipe.

Garlic Rosemary Pork Chops

Or maybe this is the ultimate Fall Recipe Collection; 50 Apple Cider Recipes You Need in Your Life this Fall.  From this Country Living apple collection I’ve picked a Roasted Butternut Squash with Cider Vinaigrette.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Cider Vinaigrette

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

if you are lucky you still have rosehips in your garden, and they make up some great medicinal recipes

Butterfly

just when the caterpillar thought her life was over, she began to fly

This post is inspired by my friend Paula Light and her Thursday prompt; Butterfly.  If you’re not familiar with this French song and very cool singer, then why not take the time now.  If, like me, your French isn’t quite up to understanding all the nuances, then just enjoy the video and warmth of this guy’s voice.

This song is also for a very close friend of mine.

Please listen with the joy of life in your heart.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

you are too beautiful

for any ending to end you

Life Goes On

obedience is the fundamental foundation of all police states

the shape of things to come

Day after day we see more rules and restrictions foisted upon us by the power-crazed unelected officials who are running things now.  Do not be fooled by the announcements and pronouncements made by Prime Ministers, Ministers, Presidents, Governors, et al, for those people are mere mouthpieces for the unkempt, unshaven, and badly dressed pseudo-scientists, non-practicing doctors, statisticians, and insane single-issue lobbyists who are really running this crazy war against the non-existent threat of the coronavirus.  There was a mantra trotted out by politicians here in the UK; ‘we are following the science…..’  Meaning; ‘we are only following orders…..’  Where have I heard that before?

No badly constructed computer model, no unproven theory, no set of false and manipulated statistics, and no private hobby-horse is too far out to be taken as justification for imposing more and more controls upon the supine herd of sheep the general population of towns, cities, counties, states, and counties has become.

Who would have believed that fathers could be prevented from attending the birth of their child, that relatives would be prevented from comforting the dying, that children would be stopped from attending school, that we could all be forced to wear face-masks, and that we would be stopped from meeting friends in a pub?  It’s insane, and it will only get worse.  Compulsory vaccinations, compulsory testing, and national identity cards are on the drawing board.

Woe betide you if you dare to question or ignore the illegal new rules and regulations imposed upon us.  Here in the UK you could be fined £10,000 for having a party.

Well, all I can say is keep calm and carry on.  Do not get fined, and certainly do not get arrested.  Instead just pay lip-service to all of the draconian crap we are supposed to embrace and obey.  Where you can, go against the spirit of the regulations and merely follow the ‘letter of the law’.  Live your life to the full, enjoy every second that you can, go shopping, go to the pub, eat at a restaurant, walk on the beach or in the woods, and whatever you do; seize the day.

Some say that the sky is falling.  And that we should all stay at home except for essential journeys.  All I know is that the days will be longer and better if we enjoy them to the full.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

listen as the clock strikes thirteen

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