DIY in the toilet (again!)

October 4, 2009

Haha, what a headline 🙂

I fitted a replacement float value to fix #wontstopflushing toilet DIY ftw!


Had to blog about it, it might just get me started doing this more often 🙂


July 6, 2009
rain on

In which I come clean about being a skinflint, but no more!

June 30, 2009

On Sunday afternoon, halfway through ironing work shirts for Monday, the iron started playing up. The steam stopped coming and instead water started dribbling everywhere. “No problem”, I thought, we’re heading to the airport to pick up the brother and sister in law, we’ll set off early and pick up another at Asda. Doh! Paul reminded me it was Sunday and the 24 hour Asda didn’t live up to the name on the sabbath.

The comment about popping into Asda and buying another one appears quite flippant and really doesnt do justice to my shopping history. I suppose this is the bit where I come clean about how I’ve been such a skinflint with irons over the last few years. We bought a new iron when we moved into the new house and I have to admit I bought a cheap Asda model for less than a tenner. It broke down after two years and I thought to act daft about how old it was, pretend I’d lost the receipt and chance my arm and take it back for a replacement. They didnt sell the same model any longer, no surprise after that time, and even the barcode had been reassigned to a television. After some discussion the nice lady agreed to replace the iron and found what she thought was the discontinued iron product code. I happily agreed that it sounded like the fifteen pounds I paid (hehe) and I left the store with a new Morphy Richards worth twenty quid.

Score so far, two years ironing for £10 and an upgraded iron.

The story doesnt end there, two years later the new iron stopped working, the steam burst button wouldnt press down so I took it back. So in March 2006 they swapped it for a slightly updated version of the same model. At no cost!

Score so far, four years ironing, total cost £15 and in fact this brings us right up to date and the third iron giving up the ghost. So in fact that make the score seven years ironing for £15. How good is that!

Except, after all that I’ve never been that happy with any of those irons. I’m the chief ironer in the house, which is more about my control freakery than anything else, and I just never loved those irons.

I was thinking about this on Monday while looking for a new iron to “pop” out and buy and decided that no longer would I scrimp! I wanted to have an iron that can simply DO the job.

In my search I found this iron and knew I had fulfilled my quest!.


Gaze upon this iron and tell me that it is not a thing of beauty. It is also, if there ever was such a thing, a Mans iron! Look at the colours, it’s like an 1980’s teenage boys duvet cover in black, silver and white. Actually my duvet also had a stripe of red but y’know its almost 🙂

The next day I got to try out the new iron and OMG I ironed two shirts in half the normal time. I’m not kidding when I say it is amazing, upon unpacking I was slightly upset to find the steam burst button on the wrong side for my thumb. After ironing two shirts I noticed that I hadnt even had to press the steam button once and results were amazing. Compare this to old irons that needed steam button pressing constantly with poor results.

The morale of the story is here.

I spent quite a lot more than I normally would and was rewarded.

Go figure!

PS. Its an £80 iron but was on sale at Argos for £40 so yay! still saved some cash 🙂

Guilty pleasures ;-)

June 17, 2009

Look at that! I’m home alone for one night only and I revert to this sort of thing!

Chicken curry pie

750 calories of pure Sin. But so worth it!

In an effort to balance this, I also roasted Aubergine, Pepper and Onion and made a tasty, healthy soup to have for the next 2 days lunches 🙂

Box Clever

April 14, 2009

I ventured into the loft the other day, thinking to quickly stow the new LCD TV box in case of needing to return it, should it fail. I’m practical like that, something learned from my Mother the notorious hoarder. Unfortunately this turned into an hours job when I realised that I couldnt find space because of all the other boxes already up there.

Some thing had to be done and since some of these boxes are for things that are well passed their guarantee period, they had to go.

Boxes 002

You might think that after this impressive clearout, there would be room up there to dance a dainty tango! Sadly no, there are probably just as many, if not more boxes still up there 😦 So, can you guess what I’ll be doing next weekend?

The great clothes mountain

July 29, 2008

It all started with unwrapping a few new shirts and turned into 2 hour declutter session.

Declutter 003

We now have a clothing mountain to dispose of! Seriously, how can there be so much? We last did this, I think, less than 6 months ago!!

The only thing thats for sure is that its going to a Salvation Army collection. No way am I leaving it outside for one of those “Third World” collection companies that have sprung up lately. Next time the leaflet comes through the door check the small print, not only do they not provide a bag, to “keep costs down” but they also admit that the collected clothes are actually sold to “provide jobs.” I say, “What a load of old shit!”

Pork Kofta

July 17, 2008

NaBloPoMo July 08 Day17

Pork Kofta or if you prefer Pork Kebab, whichever you choose has to be better than the Pork Grillsticks title given to them by Morrisons butchery!

PorkKofta 020

Simply grilled on the George, with a dressed salad and a few drops of Tomato infused Olive oil.


July 13, 2008

NaBloPoMo July 08 Day13

Papad 008

What do YOU call these?

According to Wikipedia you might say papad, pappad, pappard, pappadom, pappadum, popadam, poppadam, poppadom, appadum, appalum, appala, appoll or even papari.

I guess I would say poppadom, except privately me and Paul say papad, a shared reference to spending time in India. I’ve tried all sorts of papad in India, plain ones and ones with bits of chilli or garlic or pepper in them. They are also wonderful served as a rolled snack, filled with prawn or meat curry.

The pack on the left came from India, I always like to bring some back with me, are Ganesh garlic papad, they cost 23 Rupees which is about 30 pence. The Ruby brand plain poppadums are from Morrisons were about a Pound I think.

They say to fry them but you can also bake them, I even used to put them in the pop up toaster which worked well. Nowadays, my usual method is to microwave them. You have to turn them half way through, or they dont cook in the middle otherwise.

Its amazing how they allow you to see the microwaves working, as they rotate past the microwave emmiter, they puff up in an odd pattern. I wonder if I could get a video of it to show you?

Anyway it gives a great texture, all dry and crunchy and not like the oily ones you get from the takeaway. You can taste the papad, not whatever else was cooked in the oil 😦

We enjoyed them with some fresh onion salad prepared by Paul, followed by the leftover curry from the day before. Wasting food is in the news at the moment, its just not something I’ve ever done and of course, curry always tastes better the next day!

Front room picnic

July 12, 2008

NaBloPoMo July 08 Day12

Do you ever have a front room picnic?

Front room picnic

In this case its a conservatory picnic 🙂 You can’t see in the picture but its pissing down with rain outside but hey, who cares?

We can still have a picnic!

Lets see, Papadom, Onion Salad, Onion Bhaji, Mixed Tikka, Chicken Makhani, Lamb Razala, Pilau Rice and a Garlic Nan.

Its hard finding good Indian delivery, it seems as quickly as you find it then they change hands or the food goes downhill, Chinese take aways are even worse for this 😦 This food was from the Kamaal Palace on Woodburn Road, Darnall. Its the second time we have used it and we were both very impressed, deffo one to keep the menu handy!

PS, Im loving these mosaic style pictures, sorry if I’m overdoing it, I’m sure I’ll get over it soon. Its just that I’ve totally solved the problem of choosing my favourite after I take multiple pictures of something, check out fd’s Flickr Toys.

Fish, my way.

July 11, 2008

NaBloPoMo July 08 Day11

Yesterday we were on late shift again, 2 days in a row because Paul agreed to swap as a favour to one of the team. This meant I had time to play around the kitchen when it came to lunchtime.

I’ve mentioned my super secret coating recipe before, this time I thought I’d let you in on the secret. The recipe, like most of mine, changes every time, this version worked really well and I’ll probably aim to repeat it, unless I come up with a new idea to try!

In a bowl I mixed 60/40 of Chickpea/Gram flour and plain flour with a small teaspoon of bi-carb, a pinch of Cayenne pepper and another of Garam Masala. Now, after drying the fish off, add each fillet separately making sure it gets a good coating. I find that, if you have the time, setting them aside for 10 minutes and then running them through the coating again gives a better finish.

Now its time to fry!

Fish, my way.

You can see that, if you’ve been good, you get a nicely coated fillet that wont be greasy inside, just succulent and moist. I dont eat ordinary batter, but this I dont waste, for me its the chickpea flour that makes it so tasty and edible and the spices give a nice overall lift.

So there you have it, thats my secret, do you have one to tell?