French Toast nostalgia

First of all, Hi to my new followers!

I was planning to visit Roath Craft Market this morning but  my cold (second one this Winter already!) has made me re-think that decision. It will be there next week after all! My budget rejoices!

To compensate for being stuck inside on a day when the sun has risen, I decided to make myself a childhood favourite. Saturday mornings when we were young were often dedicated to hobbies – I started with Piano, then Art, then Drama/Dance. I could never settle. My sister Victoria had piano and athletics (she was not a give-upper!). These hobby days usually started with french toast breakfasts.

(from flickr.com)

This was inevitably one of the earliest things I learnt to cook, and neighbours used to worry that Mum and Dad would leave my sister and I, and then my little sis Michaela alone at the hob. I remember Michaela getting on a chair to cook it she was still so small! (We have a photo somewhere I am sure!).

In holiday season the neighbours used to come round in their pyjamas and be treated to french toast as well. Eggs, bread and jam galore. It was like a breakfast factory! Such good times. The smell of it still takes me back and brings a smile to my face on days like today when the sun refuses to rise in Cardiff.

Emanuel, being the most creative boyfriend ever, was intrigued by my explanation of french toast. I was equally surprised that he had not had the sweet taste of French toast in his childhood. Together, we make this elaborate version of French toast. As with his lasagna and Cajun chicken, this has become a staple! However I still need him to test the simple childhood version!

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It is beginning to feel a lot like Christmas

Warning: Strong opinions abround

I think it is absolutely ridicoulous that in the first week of November we were switching on Christmas lights. When I first arrived here in September I was appalled that Card Factory has already refurbished its shop into full Christmas gear. It gives the impression that after Summer, the only useful thing to look forward to in our yearly lives is Christmas. Please note this comes from someone who LOVES to plan in advance, but on my own, in my head.

Rant over – Oh look pretty lights! 

I am not immune to the damn lights either.

One has to admire the Brits. Coming from me, this means nothing as my friends will know because I have a strong desire to be British (Boo! I hear the Maltese patroits shouting. Well Boo You!). According to a recent survey on BuzzFeed, I am 92% british. Jubilations! Anyways, I digress. Yesterday I decided to go into town. I had (obviously) prepared a list, not least of those was returning library books due to expire. This was the only thing that pushed me into the milky fog past the front door. It was freezing, so I thought the city centre would be relatively glum.

I was wrong. It was a-buzzing. The streets were full of people and the loveliness of it all immediately warmed me up. The buskers were lined up in Queen Street using all sorts of tricks and antics to attract people. I was amazed that the music didn’t clash but actually melded into each other as you walked along the road. A particularly lovely band made of relatively older men were adorable and so good with their trumpet and saxophone (the saxophone is the most sexy intrument ever, no matter who plays it). Aren’t the Brits amazing? Braving the cold for pre-Christmas cheer?

With Santa’s Grotto bang in the middle of the street (6 Pounds entry no less, poor parents!) and that milky fog, if i squinted my ways in just a certain way, it almost looked like snow (You will now realise I have never seen snow, so I obviously have a lot to learn). So yes, I succumbed to the good Christmas feeling that had so evaded me. Then I reached into my bag and realised I had left my purse at home. Alas! The list could not be completed! At least I took something out of the walk – a renewed faith in people and Christmas.

This year. Instead of spending money on Christmas cards to all my international friends and others, and bunting for my room in Rhymney street, I have decided instead to donate money to a cause I have become very close to because of my Masters dissertation. Unique offers support and information for families diagnosed with rare chromosome disorders. Although individually rare, with the onset of array and sequencing technologies, it is now easier to identify small changes in our genetic material which can explain some difficulties these children have. Such a diagnosis can be isolating and scary because the prognosis is not completely known. Please click on their website (in the hyperlink above) for more information and some beautiful family stories! Consider doing the same with a charity you feel close to. Christmas cards will be thrown away or stored, but the money can go places!

 (rarechromo.org)