Wednesday, 19 November 2014

How To Dress Yourself - 3 Ways To Wear The Perfect Organic Cotton Shirt

Last night while messing about online, reading emails, I some how ended up on a fashion website. 
Unsure how I got there, I read the title on the page I'd entered the website on. 
'Click to see 3 ways to wear the perfect organic cotton shirt.......'

I actually laughed at myself, because I did exactly that. I read the instructions on how to dress yourself.
I clicked the photo of the model wearing the so-called perfect shirt
Well, obviously because at that moment I wanted, no, I needed to know how to wear the shirt, and not only one way, but three ways. 
I neeeeed-ed to know 3 ways to wear a shirt I dont even own. Or will ever own. 
Not because it's wasn't a nice shirt. It was. Avery nice short. A perfect shirt. 

I laughed as I snapped out of my Internet fog, back to reality. 
I did not need to now 3 ways to wear the shirt. 
I did not need to know 2 ways to wear the shirt. 
And yes, you know what's coming next - I did not need to know one way to wear the shirt. 

If I had the shirt, which I don't, I already know how I'd wear it. 
It's not rocket science. 
I'd wear it simply. I'd wear it by putting it on one arm at a time. 
Buttoning it up. And voila!
I'd be dressed in the perfect shirt.

Doodle.  Fashion.  Art.

My God! I despair at the numerous ways I waste time messing about online. 
'How to wear a shirt'
Ha! It'd be amusing if it wasn't so meaningless. 
Speaking of shirts - Hahaha!
How do you wear yours?
Do you wear your shirts in 1 way, or 3? 

Friday, 7 November 2014

Grapevine Merlot - Wine Review

Red wine, all the time!

I'm a fan of Merlot, and this bargain bottle of Spanish wine from Lidl, was very nice.
I can't remember what year this Grapevine Merlot was, but I do remember that we enjoyed drinking it.
It had a lovely aroma of blackcurrants. The taste was smooth, and full of delicious ripe blackcurrants, black cherry, plums, and subtle oak.
This Merlot is made with 100% Merlot grapes, and is a very decent wine at a very low price, it tastes like a much pricier wine.

Grapevine Merlot. Red wine. Spanish wine. Aldi.

From the label -
Succulent, smooth and rounded, this Merlot is packed full of juicy plums, black cherries and blackcurrants. It's soft fruitiness makes it easy to enjoy without food, but it is also perfect with ham, pasta and stews. 
Do you shop at Lidl?
Have you tried Grapevine Merlot?
What did you think of it?

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Drinking Alcohol When Pregnant May Become Criminal Offence

There is a test case due to be heard to decide if drinking when pregnant should be classed as a criminal offence.
This particular case that is being reported in the media, and talked about on TV; this morning I saw something about it being discussed on The Wright Stuff, is regarding a lady who drank alcohol when she was pregnant with her daughter, now aged 6. The baby was born with FAS - Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.

������ #blog #blogger #blogging © #redwine #wine #plonk

This landmark case is primarily interested in gaining compensation to pay for the care the child now requires.
But if this case is successful it could pave the way for a change in the law to make drinking alcohol when pregnant illegal, a criminal offence.

London Porter.

I'm not going to go into detail about this particular case, if you haven't already read about it you can find out more in the Telegraph, here, or the Guardian, here.

Cheers!  #blog #blogger #blogging © #wine #redwine #Portuguesewine #TwoRavensWine #cabernetsauvignon #TourigaNacional

I was saddened when I first heard about this case, but not only for the obvious reasons; the health of the baby.
Obviously FAS (Foetal Alcohol Syndrome) is serious, and the rights of the baby/child should be taken into account, but what about the rights of the woman?
If the rights of the baby are to be legally more important that the rights of the woman, then doesn't that mean women are just wombs with legs?
If the law says drinking alcohol when pregnant is a crime, and brands women who do so as criminals, how can that ever be OK? And where will it end?
How can the government be allowed to dictate what a woman can and can't do with her own body?

Lovely garden, lots of pretty flowers. This is the life!  #beer #cumberlandgoldenale #realale #ale #pub #garden #flowers #arch #Kent #NewRomney #blog #blogger #blogging © I wish I could get paid for this. This is a job

If there is a new law brought it to make drinking alcohol when you're pregnant, how long before other laws are made to further keep us in line?
Will you be breaking the law if you pop into a shop to buy certain cheeses, such as Brie, Gorgonzola, or Camembert, or pate, or sushi?
All of these foods are considered to be best avoided when pregnant, as they may cause food poisoning or harm the baby.

What about drug addicts?
Will pregnant drug users be prosecuted?

Ebulum elderberry black ale. 6.5% bloody lovely!  Why isn't there a dark ale emoji? #blog #blogger #blogging © #Ebulumblackale #Ebulum #darkale #elderberryblackale #ale #realale #scottishbeer

And if this test case is a success, will they extend things even further?
Will overweight people be committing a criminal offence if they buy food that is full of saturated fat, or too much salt?
Will people be forced to buy vegetables when all they popped into Tesco for was a packet of crisps?
And what about smoking? Will it be illegal for anyone to smoke, incase they are near a pregnant woman?
There are lots of things that can potentially harm a baby in the womb, what about driving; there may be an accident.......
I could list lots of things, as I'm sure could you, but it's all too silly to think how far this craziness could go.

....... with a dash of Malbec. #blog #blogger #blogging © #bellinghamwine #redwine #wine #merlot #malbec #southafricanwine

What about all of the woman who don't know they're pregnant straight away?
There are lots of ladies who have only realised, or found out they were pregnant when they were several months into their pregnancies.
And some women even go the full 9 months without ever knowing they were pregnant.
What about them?
Will they be charged with poisoning their baby? Manslaughter? Attempted murder?
Where will it end?


It's all very scary, and ridiculous. The state seems ever more concerned with controlling women and their bodies.

If this test case does bring about a change in law in Britain, it could have a serious effect on other laws.
For example, when a woman who is pregnant is murdered the murderer is charged with taking one life.
They are not charged with double murder, because the baby is not considered to be a person.

There are lots of other things that would have to be considered, and no doubt other existing laws would have to be changed.
Potentially it's a minefield.
My mind boggles just thinking about the ramifications.

I read that 5% of alcoholics who drink during their pregnancy have babies with FAS Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.
That's still 5% too many, but not as many as the media hysteria about this topic would have you think.
The age of the mother; older mums, malnutrition, smoking, stress, and genetics are also correlates to FAS.
But then again, you can't believe much of what you read, and most statistics are completely made-up to support whatever the writer wants to prove. 

Wine. Red wine. Wine glass.

The reason I said I was saddened, and not only for the obvious reasons; the health of the baby, by this news is because it feels as though we, as in the human race, have not come very far at all. We aren't very evolved, are we?
We are so sophisticated in so many ways, and at the same time it's like we're still living in the dark ages.

Woman are still treated like second-class citizens, like property, or pieces of meat.
It's amazing that women are even allowed out of their homes, allowed to buy alcohol, allowed to have sex and get pregnant if they want to, without being forced to ask the government for permission beforehand.

It is 2014. I just wish it felt like it.

Wine glass. Wine. Red wine. Wine bottles.

Yes, it is sad, very sad, that the child in this case was born suffering from FAS Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.
But isn't it also sad that the baby is considered the innocent victim, and the mother of this child is being vilified as evil?
Doesn't the woman need help, and not judgement?
Wouldn't we all be better off if instead of making nasty judgemental comments about the lady in this case, we asked how we could help her? And then actually help her.

Valpolicella Superiore 2011. Red wine.

I have never drunk alcohol when pregnant.
By stating that fact I am not saying I am better than women who do drink alcohol when they are pregnant.
It's just I know that by writing this blog post it may seem as though I am advocating getting slaughtered when pregnant. I am not.
I have never drunk alcohol when pregnant because that is my choice. My body. My choice.
That's the point, it is my choice. My body. To do with, and to, what I choose.
Surely every woman should be in charge of her own body?
Big Brother already has way too much of a say in how we live our lives - Don't do that, do do this, don't eat that, do eat this, etc. etc. etc.

It should never be illegal to drink alcohol when pregnant. Never!
Having said that I also think that being pregnant is a blessing, and doing everything you can to ensure the good health of the baby is of the utmost importance.
Drink alcohol when pregnant, if you want to.
Don't drink alcohol when pregnant, it may harm your baby.
See, I am contrary by nature.

Almost empty.  #shepherdneame #stout #beer #britishbeer

As I don't own any photos of pregnant women, or babies that I can share on this blog post, I decided to add a couple of photos of booze, just to break up the text.
And maybe to celebrate the fact that I have beer and wine.
At the moment I have beer and wine.
But who knows for how much longer?
How long until the powers that be come and confiscate my booze?

My blog posts are usually a pretty jumbled rambling rant, but I think this may be slightly more mad than usual.
I'm blaming tiredness, sore throat, chest infection, and the fact that I'm really quite angered by this whole subject - all of which mean I haven't expressed my thoughts properly.
But hopefully you get the jist.


One last thing before I finish; I thought I was finished with that last bit, but then I had another thought.
What if it was men who got pregnant? Men who carried babies in their wombs?
I bet the state would never, ever consider telling men that they couldn't drink alcohol, or in fact telling them anything that concerned their own bodies.
Pfft! It's not easy being a woman in a mans World is it?
I would really love to hear what you think.
What's your opinion, or thoughts about this whole subject?

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Homemade Buttery Flatbread

I Love bread.
And I Love butter.
So today was a good day, because Mr.R made some seriously delicious flatbreads to accompany our lunch.

Hot buttery flatbread. Homemade bread. Flatbread. Food. Bread.

Our lunch today was equally as tasty as the flatbreads, it was a roasted vegetable curry.
The roasted vegetable curry was seriously hot and spicy, and the flat breads were generously smothered in butter.
Do you love bread?
Do you ever make your own flatbread? 

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009 - Wine Review

We buy, and drink, a lot of wine.
We're not snobby about where we buy our wine, and since we settled back in England we've bought a lot of wine from budget supermarkets Lidl and Aldi.
This bottle of Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009 is another purchase from Aldi, Tempranillo grape, it cost £5.99.

Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009. Aldi. Red wine. Wine. Spanish wine.

I know there are wine drinkers who wouldn't be seen perusing the wine in Lidl or Aldi, and they definitely wouldn't drink 'cheap plonk' even when their financial circumstances may not be as healthy as they once were, but I think they're missing out.
It is possible to get some very nice wines from the budget supermarkets which don't cost a small fortune.

When you consider that the majority of a bottle of wine is tax, and then there's the cost of packaging, handling, shipping, delivery, and storage, you may think that buying a bottle of wine for say five quid means it will be crap. But that's not always the case.
In the past we have bought so-called decent bottles of wine which cost a lot more than a fiver, and they were memorable only because they tasted so bad.
I usually agree that you get what you pay for, but sometimes the saying, 'you get what you pay for' isn't completely true.

Red wine. Wine.  Wine glass.  Swirling glass.

Anyway, back to this wine.
Mr.R is a fan of Rioja, whereas I never used to like it at all.
I remember when we loved in France, we would often drive to Spain to go shopping; it was only a short drive from home and so much cheaper than France, and Mr.R would stock up on lots of bottles of Rioja.
He got to drink it all himself in those days because as I said, I didn't like Rioja. But now he has to share, because I do like the taste of it now.

So, this wine, Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009, 13.5% - what did we think about it?
It was a very pleasant drink, medium-bodied, with lots of lovely ripe cherries and blackcurrants, a hint of vanilla, and a pleasant oakiness.
It's a classic Rioja Reserva, aged for 3 years in oak barrels.
Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva is produced by Bodegas Señorío de Hueda.

Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009. Aldi. Red wine. Wine. Spanish wine.

From the label -
Intense red fruits lead into hints of blackcurrant and cherry. These fruits are then joined by perfectly balanced and fine vanilla and oak spices - present due to careful ageing in oak casks for 3 years. 
This wine has a lush, rich texture which is particularly good with casseroles, meat grilled with herbs, and roast lamb. 
Have you tried Baron Amarillo Rioja Reserva 2009?
Did you like it?

Friday, 31 October 2014

A Lurcher and Two Bull Terriers Playing Football on the Beach - Video

As it is Halloween today, and I don't like Halloween, I felt I needed something to cheer me up.
Usually I'd play with Barley, our lovely Lurcher, because he always make my heart happy, but he's fast asleep in front of the fire - and I don't want to wake him.

So, a quick search online and I found the video I shot a few months ago of Barley playing on a local beach with two of our friends Bull Terriers, Mandy and Gracie.
Not surprisingly, the football didn't last very long before it was punctured, but the three dogs had a really fabulous time running, chasing the ball, and generally playing with each.
It was a really lovely and enjoyable morning for all of us.

I wish it was Summer again, I'd love to be back down on the beach with Mr.R and Barley.
I love the big sky, the clouds, the salty air, the sand, everything about being by the sea.
I also love to watch our boy zoom about all over the place, it's always such a beautiful sight to see Barley running around free.
Does your dog like the beach?
Is he/she any good at football?

Halloween - I don't like it!

It's Halloween, and I don't like it.
I don't really understand the excitement that Halloween seems to induce in everyone. Everyone except me it seems.

America especially enjoy celebrating Halloween in a seriously big way, with parties and fancy dress costumes.
Now it is also very popular here in Britain too, and becoming more so each year.

I know what Halloween is supposed to be about, but as I tend to ramble on and on, I'll just say this-
Or, better still I won't say anything, I'll quote what the Encyclopaedia Britannica says about Halloween -

'In ancient Britain and Ireland, the Celtic Festival of Samhain was observed on October 31, at the end of Summer.......
The souls of the dead were supposed to revisit their homes on this day and the Autumnal festival acquired sinister significance, with ghosts, witches, goblins, black cats, fairies and demons of all kinds said to be roaming about. 
It was the time to placate the supernatural powers controlling the processes of nature. 
In addition, Halloween was thought to be the most favorable time for divinations concerning marriage, luck, health, and death. 
It was the only day on which the help of the devil was invoked for such purposes.'

The main thing I don't like about Halloween is being disturbed by the knocking on the front door, the ringing of the doorbell.
I spend all evening unable to relax because I'm waiting for the knock on the door.
It's not that I begrudge giving sweets to children, I am more than happy to do that, although I always feel slightly uncomfortable handing sweets to the children of complete strangers.

I mean, when we were children, weren't we all told not to accept sweets from strangers? I know I was.
And yet at Halloween people take their children out and let them take sweets from strangers.

I suppose it's not so bad if you live in a close-knit community where everyone knows everyone, but I'm a Londoner, and it's pretty 'normal' for most Londoners not to speak to their neighbours unless they have to. And we wouldn't know our neighbours children if they stood up in our soup, let alone if they're dressed up in Halloween costumes and turned up uninvited on our doorsteps.

If I lived in a small friendly village I'd happily leave loads of sweets outside our front door so that any passing children could help themselves without knocking on the door, but as I'm unable to do that, I guess I'll have to grin and bear it.

Church loomed over us as we sheltered from the rain. church. rain. Building. Religion. Architecture.
I don't have a relevant Halloween photo, so here's a church. 
It's gloomy - like my feelings about Halloween.
I was going to doodle something more Halloween-esque, but it seemed hypocritical - so I didn't.

You may think I'm a misery for not enjoying Halloween.
Maybe I am. But just because everyone else likes something doesn't mean I have to.
I'm looking forward to tomorrow evening, when Halloween is all over, and I can sit and relax without any disturbances.
Are you a fan of Halloween?
Do you dress up and party?
What will you be wearing this year?