Sunday, June 11, 2017

Long weekend

It's a long weekend in Australia! (Have I mentioned before that I find it endlessly entertaining that the Queen's birthday is a public holiday here, but not in the UK? Because I do. Also I have to make the most of it because this is our last Monday public holiday until, I think, October. Yikes!)

Here's the latest news from around here:

DP's birthday was this past week - can you work out how old he is from the candles? Appropriately given his profession and interests (and name), his birthday falls on a major event in military history, and this year his seminar students found out and celebrated by giving him a running real-time recap of happenings throughout that fateful day 73 years ago. I took the easy route by making his favorite dinner (steak au poivre and mashed potatoes) and baking his favorite cake.

Also this past week - family friends of ours are dealing with some medical stuff and, like us, are far from their family support networks. So, on the day when one parent was in the hospital overnight and the other parent was wrangling everything else (including three kids), I volunteered to bring over dinner. Pasta bake to the rescue!

I didn't really use a recipe for this - just made a batch of Disruptive Bolognese in the slow cooker ahead of time, then boiled up 3 boxes (about 3 lbs/1.5 kg) of rigatoni. I mixed it all up together with lots of grated cheese and some baby spinach (vegetables makes it a nutritionally complete main course!), scooped it into a disposable baking tin, and wrapped it up. (I also made up a smaller pan for us to have for dinner that night, killing two birds with one stone.) With a loaf of bread and a batch of blondies, it made a complete meal and was a pretty low-stress way to lend a helping hand.

And a good reminder to be grateful for little things - like Sunday breakfast with my own family.

And flowers to cheer us - even on the gloomiest winter days.


 

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