SINGLES’ CRISTMAS SURVIVAL GUIDE

48 and single at Christmas….. I knew the awkward question would be raised “So have you had any dates this year?” as much as I could guarantee the lumps in Mum’s gravy. But this was a record - 10 seconds after she opened the door….. first time she seen me in hmmmm a long time……

Reach a certain age, and if you’re not happily co-habiting/engaged/married or romantically-active in some form or other, then it’s going to be an issue - and never more so than at Christmas.

After all, the festive season was made for couples - or so it can bloomin’ seem…

Everybody knows the line between being romantically-hopeful and downright desperate is never so fine as during the festive season….. and if you do get lucky, it probably means you ended up snogging the idiot from IT at your work party, but more likely you go home alone feeling even more HOPELESSLY UN-LOVED than ever.

….. and who has the money for all these new sparkly party frocks? I’m lucky if I can afford a christmas cake by the time I’ve bought presents for everybody else’s kids and partners.

It’s fine. I actually quite enjoy watching my brother and his wife exchange their never-ending stack of gifts….. Sure…… and after a few glasses of wine, facing my mother’s interrogation about my worrying lack of suitors will be a walk in the park.

I’ve more pressing matters to focus on - like getting through the evening of movies without starting to sob and wail - “I know how Rudolph feels, an outcast, WAHHHH!”

SINGLES’ CRISTMAS SURVIVAL GUIDE

COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
It’s easy to think the grass is always greener, but Christmas can be stressful for couples too. At least you don’t have to worry about pleasing two sets of in-laws for the time-being! Make the most of this and embrace the chance to do things all on your terms.

GIVE MISTLETOE A MISS
Who doesn’t want a kiss at Christmas? But if you’ve been single for a while the pressure to find romance can be immense at this time of year, which can leave you more deflated than ever if things don’t work out. Make the choice to forget about love this year and just enjoy yourself and spending time with family and friends.

TREAT YOURSELF
No special someone to exchange gifts with? Heck - by yourself that necklace, perfume or those gorgeous shoes. Think of all the money you’ve saved by not having to buy presents for your other half.

IN GOOD COMPANY
It may feel like it, but you are not the only person who’s single at Christmas. Make plans to catch up with a fellow singleton and go on a ‘date’ to watch that new movie together. If all your friends are loved-up, why not check out clubs and social groups in your area or look at volunteering opportunit. Anything’s better than moping alone and it could be really rewarding.

BE PREPARED
If you’re already dreading having to explain why you’re still single, or reassure ‘concerned’ relatives that you’re fine, just prepare a breezy response then laugh it off and forget about it.

LOOK AHEAD
Rather than feeling miserable about the things you don’t have, focus on what you could have - all because you’re single! This freedom won’t last forever, so make a list of things you’d love to do in 2014, whether that’s visiting tea shops in UK, learning a language or travelling - absolutely anything.

Merry Christmas
Lizzy

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays . Skrevet af LE 26. December, 2013 kl 16:06

I love…..

….. cherry tomatoes….. but let’s face it, they do not taste of anything this time of year. But try roasting them in the oven.

The good thing about roasting cherry tomatoes is that it brings out the best from even the most tasteless tomatoes….. and by flavoring them with a little sea salt, black pepper, olive oil and balsamic vinegar you are guaranteed that these small juicy beauties, will be bursting with flavor.

….. and it is dishes like this (which are really simple) that make mealtimes far more enjoyable and take the hassle out of cooking.

Garlic and Rosemary Chicken with Roast Cherry Tomato Salad

All you need (4)
4 chicken breasts
6 cloves of garlic
2-3 sprigs of rosemary
4 tablespoons of olive oil
A good pinch of ground black pepper
A good pinch of sea salt

For the salad:
4 tablespoons of olive oil
2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
A good pinch of ground black pepper
A good pinch of sea salt
1 large stalk of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
120g of rocket leaves
1 small red onion, sliced
Shavings of parmesan cheese to serve

Do this:
In a bowl: whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar for the salad.

Add the tomatoes to a large roasting tray cut side up, pour half the dressing over and toss to combine. Season with sea salt and black pepper.

Place in an oven at 200oC for about 35 minutes or until the tomatoes have reduced in size.

While the tomatoes are roasting in the oven, in a mortar crush the garlic cloves with a little sea salt, until you have a fine paste. Remove the leaves from the sprigs of rosemary, and add them to the mashed garlic together with 4 tablespoons of olive oil (mix in to marinade for the chicken).
In a bowl: let the chicken breasts marinade while you prepare the rest of the salad ingredients.

On a large hot griddle pan, fry the chicken breasts for 3-4 minutes either side, depending on the size, but just make sure they are cooked entirely.

In a large bowl, toss together the rocket, roasted cherry tomatoes, red onion and remaining dressing.

Serve alongside the chicken with some shavings of parmesan cheese.

Enjoy

Kategorien Recipes . Skrevet af LE 1. December, 2013 kl 12:25

I talk and talk…..

….. and I promise and promise, and then I don’t fulfill.

Every single time, in fact, I write a new post, I say that my presence on the blog is decreasing, but that I’ll make up for it, that you’ll see me more often….. but then I become preoccupied with other things, therefore, I further reduce my presence on this poor blog. Does saying that I’ll patch things up bring me bad luck? Does life beyond the blog really absorb me so much?

Whatever it is, I really hope I’ll be able to write a bit more in the next weeks, ’cause maybe I’ll have a bit more time available (but I added the “maybe” just in case). But don’t worry, in the past weekend I relaxed a bit and I cooked (hallelujah, hallelujah), so you’ll have the pleasure (or displeasure) of seeing these 2 or 3 new recipes soon. Of course, if only I’d remember to take pictures every time I cook something new, maybe my blog will definitely improve, but I can’t ask myself too much.

Coming back to topics much more interesting than my (lack of) mental health, let’s talk about today’s recipe. Some time ago I found this recipe and I fell in love;

Risotto Alla Primavera

All you need:
6 1/2 cups (about) vegetable broth
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 8-ounce onion, chopped
1 medium leek (white part only), sliced crosswise into thin rings
2 stalks green garlic, chopped, or 1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups arborio rice or carnaroli rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup 1-inch pieces thin asparagus
1 cup freshly shelled small peas or petite frozen peas (about 1/4 pound)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving

Do this:
Bring broth to simmer in medium saucepan. Cover; keep warm over low heat.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion, leek, and garlic - sauté until wilted and almost tender, about 6 minutes.

Add rice; stir until rice is translucent at edges but still opaque in center, about 3 minutes.

Add wine; simmer until almost all liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 1 minute.

Add broth 1 cup at a time until rice is about half cooked, allowing each addition to be absorbed before adding next and stirring often, about 9 minutes.

Stir in asparagus, peas (if using fresh) and parsley.

Continue adding broth by cupfuls and stirring until rice is almost tender, about 6 minutes longer.

Add peas (if using frozen).

Cook until rice is tender but still firm to bite and mixture is creamy, about 2 minutes longer. Remove from heat.

Add 3/4 cup cheese and 2 tablespoons butter. Stir until cheese and butter melt.

Season with salt and pepper.

Serve passing additional cheese alongside.

Buon appetito

Kategorien Comfort, Cottage Life / Cooking, Kitchen & food, Recipes . Skrevet af LE 25. November, 2013 kl 10:08

I love…..

….. summer tomatoes - I wait for their arrival all year.

….. and I can’t think of anything better on a autumn Sunday, than a lovely salad of warm juicy tomatoes layered with fresh basil, creamy mozzarella and flakes of maldons sea salt that burst in my mouth….. there is nothing like it and makes the wait well worth it.

When you have tomatoes this good they need very little work, as this beautiful vegetable will just shine and take the lead role in any meal.

Caprese Salad

Tomatoes
Fresh basil
Mozzarella
Sea salt
Cracked pepper
Quality olive oil
Grilled bread

Simple as it sounds its heaven. Combine all ingredients, eat it as a salad, put it on crostini, whatever way you fancy.

Enjoy and happy Sunday

Kategorien Cottage Life / Cooking, Kitchen & food, Recipes . Skrevet af LE 24. November, 2013 kl 13:22

I’ve recently started to…..


….. work out in the morning.

This happens every once in a while, and I usually don’t know what sparks the urge, but I like it.

Anyways, I’m feeling healthy, so whether it comes from eating right, doing something particularly active, or just simply taking care of myself….. I love the feeling. Squats and crunches, here I come!

What have you done for yourself lately, that make you feel good?

Kategorien Comfort, Health, Lizzy says, Personally, We Love Wellness . Skrevet af LE 5. January, 2013 kl 14:48

Today, I’m apparently mastering the art…..

….. of puttering around the house in a faded, old PJ and a sad excuse for a ponytail.

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays, Comfort, Cottage Life / Cooking, Lizzy says, Personally . Skrevet af LE 1. January, 2013 kl 16:12

New Years Resolutions:

What are your top 5 goals you want to accomplish in 2013, and why are they on your list?

My goals are:

GOAL 1:
To complete and pass my exams in the beginning of the new year.

GOAL 2:
Work out all the details of my little company. Among the things this includes is: finishing my business plan, designing and writing all the content for We Love Wellness (currently under construction) and getting all my marketing materials finalized.

GOAL 3:
Continue to meditate and be mindful every day, since doing so uplifts my spirits and fills me with so much joy….. especially when I find that I’ve inspired someone else in the process.

GOAL 4:
To develop my art and brand in new, unexpected ways!

GOAL 5:
Be kind whenever possible. (It is always possible - Dalai Lama).

I hope that you and your loved ones will arrive safely and well into the new year - and that 2013 will meet all your hopes and expectations.

Happy New Year
Lizzy 

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays, Lizzy says, Lovely Quotes, My job - my passion, Personally, We Love Wellness . Skrevet af LE 31. December, 2012 kl 9:20

One little person…..

….. giving all of her time to peace, makes news.

Many people, giving some of their time, can make history.

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays, Lovely Quotes . Skrevet af LE 26. December, 2012 kl 11:22

May Peace be your…..

….. gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through!

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays, Cottage Life / Cooking . Skrevet af LE 25. December, 2012 kl 10:17

The homemade red cabbage…..

….. is almost ready…..

…..outside, snow lies as a thick cozy blanket.

I hope that you will have a blessed and peaceful Christmas, and that all your wishes will come true.

Homemade red cabbage:
2 onions
3 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tbsp. cloves
1/2 tbsp. cinnamon
3 apples
1 red cabbage
olive oil
1/2 bottle of red wine
2-3 tbsp. vinegar

Do this:

Chop the cabbage, onions and apples and let them simmer in a saucepan 10-15 minutes.

Add the rest and cook for 3 hours on low heat.

Season with salt and pepper.

Enjoy and Merry Christmas

Lizzy

Kategorien Christmas, Easter & Holidays, Cottage Life / Cooking, Recipes . Skrevet af LE 24. December, 2012 kl 14:18

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