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    Lisa’s Mediterranean Vegetable Bake

    This dinner is so simple it’s almost wrong to call it a recipe, but it’s so scrumptious that I’m going to share it anyway.

    Packed full of as many vegetables as you can slip in, it’s full of everything good in vegetables. I like my vege skins on; just scrubbing the skin off potatoes and butternut squash, peeling sweet potatoes, adding courgettes, peppers, cauliflower, carrots and any thing else you have languishing in the fridge. It also makes a great BBQ accompaniment.

    Lisa’s Mediterranean Vegetable Bake

    Ingredients:

    Handfuls of diced (about an inch square); Scrubbed Potatoes, Peeled Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Courgette, Peppers, Beetroot, Cauliflower …
    Quartered Red or White Onions
    Whole unpeeled Garlic Cloves
    Olive Oil or Cooking Spray
    Diced Chicken
    Slices of Halloumi Cheese or crumbled feta

    1. Preheat the oven to 200°C
    2. Add all the vegetables (bar the cheese) in a large cooking tray, coating the vegetables in Oil/Spray and cook for about 40minutes (if cooking the beetrood, pop it into a wee tinfoil bath in the corner to stop it staining the other vegetables). Flip all of the vegetables and meat once about halfway through cooking
    3. 10 minutes before the end scatter strips of halloumi or crumble feta over the vegetables
    4. Enjoy with a nice white wine
    5. Allow the dishwasher in the house to clean the pan

    Todays Workout: An hour window shopping

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    London Living: Paralympic Blues

     

    With the closing ceremony tonight, it’s hard to think of what we’ll be doing without the Paralympics & Olympics. When initially announced that London had won the Olympics, there was a great deal of  cringing in London, imagining all of the chaos caused transport and facilities-wise, but actually it’s been ok. It’s be more than ok really – after the main Security problems, and our Army boys stepped up, the trains have been busier (Ok, I’m not in East London where it’s based, but I do live near one of the main stadiums) but there hasn’t been much armpits smooshing, the traffic seems to have been managed quite well, and the Games volunteers were in a league of their own. This is the largest Paralympics in history, with 4,200 athletes from 164 countries — 2.5 million tickets were sold before the Games began, and the Olympic Stadium is sold out for every session.

    The last 5 weeks have been so Games-centric it’s going to leave a void in our lives, for awhile at least. We have watched the Games (live and continuously on TV), discussed results being broadcast to us continuously, laughed over the water cooler and cried at the defeats.

    Congratulations to the amazing Olympians and Paralympians, without you the Games would be rather pointless. You’ve given everyone a kick up the butt, and shown the amazing things that the human body can achieve – with commitment, determination and passion. The Paralympians especially have won everyones hearts – from Oscar Pretorious’ wins and competing in the Olympics, to Mary Sayer, a Lower Hutt girl winning Gold. Maybe because we are in the centre of the maelstrom, but I think that these have been the biggest Paralympics coverage that I’ve seen, and the support is phenomenal. Even the negative coverage; overseas News networks not showing or highlighting the full achievements garnered by their Paralympians has sparked outrage, but with today’s social media outlets, people power is changing the face of the world and the outrage had pulled even more positive reaction.

    We didn’t manage to get Paralympics tickets, but have been avidly watching the coverage, and it’s great (in some non-selfish ways) to see that the tickets have been selling out. It can only get better from here on in, and the legacy the whole Games are leaving is so important – Tourism, development and recognising the superhuman efforts that these guys have made – overall I think it’s been great. Hopefully the legacy of the buidlings and development in the East end is also positive. London is such a vibrant city and will continue to develop and morph.

    Cheers & see you all again in Rio!

    Todays workout: Rest day, couch potato-ing for the closing ceremony!

    What has been your favourite event of the Games? We loved the Diving, and the sheer ferociousness of the Paralympic Basketball. Wow.

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    One with ones self

    Today I found myself an moment of peace amongst the noise, interaction, sights and smells of the Tourists in and around London. As a very happily married gal, it felt quite strange today to split off in town and wander our separate ways (hubby was off to do some secret shopping for my upcoming birthday) and I ended up wandering through Charing Cross and the Strand. Being on my own for the hour or so got me musing.

    Life gets so busy, music, tv, computers – we can become so overloaded with so much stimulation and demand, that it becomes the norm and it’s hard to see it creeping in.

    Its nice to wander on your own occasionally “as lonely as a cloud” amongst happily chattering tourists, contemplating life, just having a quiet moment. It was also a gloriously sunny day, we are certainly having a late summer!

    Coincidently we were discussing the same thing last night with family whose boys are growing up and are beginning to be left at home on thier own for short periods. The boys love it – they feel independant and can have a moment of blissful quiet.


    I think really we should all take these brief moments, and treasure them. I couldn’t do it all the time, and afterwards very happily met up with hubby, and then friends for a lovely catch-up drink and joined in the hubbub.

    Todays Workout: 30mins wandering

    When do you find your peaceful moments?
     

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    Mort – Book and Theatre Review

    I have a confession to make. I am a huge Terry Pratchett fan. I love his combination of fantasy, wit and comments on life.

    His fourth book is Mort is a witty, cynical parody romp through perils of a first job, but this is a first job with a difference – Mort’s boss is Death himself. We’ve all experienced first days, but at least our first day’s couldn’t destroy the very fabric of reality. “As Death’s apprentice, he’ll have free board and lodging, use of the company horse, and he won’t need time off for family funerals. The position is everything Mort thought he’d ever wanted until he discovers that this perfect job can be a killer on his love life.”

    With great character development of Death (an otherwise shadowy bit-figure in the Discworld Series), once Mort thinks he gets the hang of being a Grim Reaper, Death takes a working holiday discovering dancing, drinking and his skills as a short-order chef until – inevitably – he has to be summoned back to fix the problems that compassionate Mort causes.

    What I liked there is a rich seam of British humour running through all of Terry Pratchett’s books, and this is no exception. With some fabulous one-liners, but a saddening dearth of footnotes, and footnotes of footnotes (my favourite part of Terry Pratchett books) it’s a great easy read, that has you laughing out loud.

    The only problem is it is a wee bit patchy with a couple of spectacular leaps in the narrative, but it’s such a crazy idea in the first place, all is easily forgiven.

    Mort: (Discworld Novel 4): A Discworld Novel (Discworld Novels)

    Terry Pratchett

    What I really loved: Mort the Musical

    Photo Credit: Rose Theatre Kingston

    Yeah, you read that right! One of my work colleagues (another bookworm) mentioned in passing that she was going to see Mort: The Musical, and I had to go, dragging hubby all the way. Whilst the edges were a bit raw, it was so much light-hearted fun. Brought to the stage by Jenifer Toksvig and performed by Youth Music Theatre UK’s production, it’s neat little adaptation of the book. As ever, it doesn’t cover the whole book but to be honest I didn’t expect it to.

    With some amazing prop use, and a few natty dance numbers & songs, we grinned from start to finish. They way it’s been adapted was also quite successful – leaving in enough ‘in-jokes’ to keep the Pratchett fans happy, but un-convoluted enough to appease the non-fans (read better halves dragged along).

    (Please note any links to Amazon are through my Amazon Associates account, which means I make a little money (less than 5%)
    from any purchases made after clicking through these links without adding any cost to your purchase. This helps support
    my book addiction, so if you are interested in buying the book, please click through the top link)

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