Archive for August, 2009

End of an Era…

August 10, 2009

Today, we sold our car.  It has been for sale for a few weeks and yesterday a nice family came to test drive it.  Tonight they are picking it up for good.  I feel very sad.

When we bought our car in 2004, our plan was to replace it in five years.  Coincidentally, we have grown out of it this year.  We currently have two children in cots and nappies, so whenever we go away, it is a real squeeze.  In two weeks we are going away on a 2 month road trip, including some camping, so we definitely would not have fit.  But that is another story

We have purchased our lovely new (well, new to us) car and we are very happy with it.  As always it is missing some of the features to which we had grown used, but it has many others that are great (like a head rest that actually supports my head so I can sit in the car for more than half an hour without getting neck pain!)  It also meets the needs of our family right now.

But still we need to say goodbye.

Possum, who is as sensitive and sentimental as I am, sat in the car for half an hour with me today, after we received the call.  It isn’t that the car is really any more than a very fancy tool, but it is a symbol.

It is the first car my husband and I had together.  It is the car that drove our newborn boys home from hospital.  (It is the car that got me to the hospital, fully dilated, each time, too!)  We have had many holidays and adventures in it.  We have picnicked in the back when caught out by rain.  We have changed a thousand nappies in there and breastfed many, many times.

And now no more.

Now it is time to start a new adventure…

Cocoa

August 8, 2009

I love cocoa.  It is my favourite hot beverage.

Hot chocolate is so popular out and about, but it is usually made so sweetly.  Even the few cafes I have found that serve cocoa serve it sweetened.

I have to admit, that I love that proper, rich, European hot chocolate; or a spiced, Mexican-style one; but not that awful, sweet stuff you generally get.

The secret to a decent cocoa is to cook the cocoa powder.  Now, as I am sure you know, the only way to make a warm milk drink is on the stove.  Microwaving changes the constitution and the flavour of the milk (ick).  And normally you would warm the milk until it just started to bubble around the edge of your milk saucepan, never actually let it boil.  However, with cocoa, you must boil the milk with the cocoa powder stirred through.  This will rid the drink of the raw, bitterness of cocoa powder.

And if you really would like something a little different, don’t forget to add a pinch of mixed spice, or cinnamon or nutmeg.  Mmmhmm.

Aaah.  I think it might be time to visit the kitchen.