Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Chaos!! :-/

As I'm sure you can all imagine, life has gotten super crazy for me, hence the serious lack of blog posts. Rather than bombard you with a huge post now, I'll go back and post for each day something happened. I know, I know, I'm just that anal! *laughs knowingly* Besides, I have a bunch of drafts sitting to complete so I'll do that over the next few days. Lots of exciting news so keep checking back!

Friday, 8 May 2009

Happy Birthday Wee Sis!

Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday to the Best Wee Sis in the World.
Happy Birthday to You.


YAY!!!!! My wee baby sister is 21 today! I feel so old! *lol* I'm dead excited with the presents we bought her, but I better not say too much about them here. ;-) I also used her 21st as a great excuse to buy a new outfit to wear to her birthday dinner. =) Photos to follow...

Monday, 4 May 2009

Happy Birthday Sarah!

Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday dear Sarah,
Happy Birthday to You.


As one of the only two readers of this log who have left comments, I'd like to say thank you. I hope you have a great birthday! What's that now... almost 14 years I've known you? OMG I feel old!! Enjoy yourself and love to the family! *hugs*

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Week One

I've been on a pretty healthy diet and back exercising again for a week now, but in true Caz fashion I faltered slightly. It might have something to do with the two batches of brownies and caramel shortbread I made *lol* or the Chinese I had last night. In my defence the Chinese was inevitable - you see, our mate Dave had been up from Wales for a bit and we always have a takeout when he's here. We even had to scour the district to find one that was open on a Monday! This raises the question: why are Chinese takeaways closed on a Monday? I read somewhere it goes back to ye olde trading laws but I don't know if that's true.

I've not made it to the gym yet, but I've been on the Wii Fit quite a bit. Loving the hula hooping (though I get the giggles every time I do it) and the step aerobics. I was using it last night to burn off my Chinese *lol* and when I got to my target 30 minutes I accidentally ran over to 31 minutes. In true Caz fashion I had to round up to 45 after that, but as I did I opened a new balance game that I had to try and so in the end I did 50 minutes. I'm kinda skeptical as to how much benefit exercising on the Wii Fit actually gives you but the fact I was sweating and am sore the next day makes me think it's a lot higher than I originally thought. Now I just need to get some ankle and wrist weights for resistance and I'll be tonight everything in no time! =D I actually considered getting a real hula hoop so the Wii hula-ing wasn't quite so virtual.

Anyway, I weighed myself tonight and since last Tuesday I've lost..... 2 lbs!!! =D

10 Random Things I Can See

It's not even 2pm and already I've had the day from hell. I knew it was going to be bad from around 4am when I was awaken by what can only be described as a sound similar to a woman being attacked outside my house. It was loud. It was piercing the silence. It was so close. Really creeped me out. Jazz was asleep on my pillow and even he was sat bolt upright with his ears tuned in to the shrieking sounds. Transpired to be foxes fighting in the street. *sigh*

Work was no better. I've spent the entire morning dealing with everyone else's shit and I have a mountain of my own stuff to get through. To top it all off my boss has decided that he needs to "work from home" this afternoon and tomorrow. As much as I love when he's not in the office to bug me, his version of working from home involves sending two e-mails a day to make you think he's working. Really I think he's down the pub with his mates lol.

Now that brings me to where I am now; sat in Starbucks on my lunch by myself with nothing but my blog, a frappuccino and a skinny blueberry muffin for company. Clearing today's troubles out of my mind completely leaves me able to see these ten random things as I sit on a bar stool facing the window to the world:
  • a cobbled lane with lots of puddles;
  • a couple kissing as they part ways, one walking down the lane and the other down the street;
  • a litter collector picking up pieces of rubbish individually with his rubber glove clad hands;
  • a woman frantically typing away in the job centre opposite (probably blogging);
  • pigeons everywhere;
  • a bus advertising flights to Barcelona (what I'd give to be there right now...);
  • a guy delivering bottled water-cooler water to my office building;
  • two women gossiping and laughing loudly over cigarettes;
  • an old lady trying to cross the road between traffic instead of walking to the crossing;
  • a teenage guy and his mate staring at me 'cos I'm taking in my surroundings... better get back to the office.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Shedding Pounds

Another thing I know that will help me in my "make me happy" quest is to lose weight. I have been steadily gaining the pounds throughout 2008 and up until last night didn't have the drive or motivation to stop myself. But I weighed myself yesterday and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I'm officially thee heaviest I have ever been! I've tipped the scales 1lb over my 2003 fat weight and I hate it. I. Hate. It. ='( I have a plateau weight of 8lbs lighter than I am now, so that should be easy to reach. But my target weight, the same weight I was when I was 18 years old, is going to prove a challenge. I've managed it before though, back in 2004, and I plan on getting there again.

So after giving myself a good old kick up the backside, I decided that I want to lose 22lbs (10kg) but I'm not sure what a realistic target time would be. Some people have suggested aiming to lose one pound per week; others two pounds. 22 weeks seems too long... So I left the deciding up to my trusty Wii Fit. It suggested I aim for 3 months so that's what I'm gonna do. Let the countdown begin!

I'll get some measurement and weight loss charts designed for the sidebar of this blog so you can all track my progress. Wish me luck!!!

Saturday, 11 April 2009

If Derek had a Band and they had an Album...

You might remember that I did a little quiz recently to see what my band's first album would look like. Here's my finished result. Derek completed the quiz today and this is what his band Glamorous Glue's album would look like. =)

The Joy of Baking

I baked again! It's like I've found this new hobby and I can't get enough! This time I made another batch of gingerbread (but it didn't come out as nice as before - either the oven was a little too hot or the self-raising flour wasn't quite right.) I also made chocolate brownies and Rice Krispies Squares and OMG they're fab!!! I have the ingredients to make millionaire's shortbread but I think I'll make that later on.

The recipe I used for the brownies came from Joy of Baking, a great recipe website I came across just the other day. Here it is:

Chocolate Brownies

  • 140g bittersweet chocolate
  • 115g unsalted butter
  • 15g cocoa powder
  • 200g granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 95g all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 125g semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 175*C and place the rack in the center of the oven.
  2. Butter an 20 cm square pan.
  3. Melt the chocolate and butter in a large bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the cocoa powder and sugar.
  5. Whisk in the vanilla extract and eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  6. Stir in the flour, salt and chocolate chips.
  7. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a little batter and a few moist clumps clinging to it. Do not over bake.
  8. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Gingerbread Recipe

Here is the gingerbread recipe I used in my fabulously yummy gingerbread! It came from "Maw Broon's But an' Ben Cookbook" which OMG is amazing! Beautifully Scottish and amazingly comical. *lol*


  • 1 lb self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 2 teaspoons dried ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 ozs brown sugar
  • 1 cup golden syrup
  • 6 ozs butter
  • 2 ozs crystallised ginger, finely chopped
  • 4 ozs sultanas
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup buttermilk


  1. Sieve the flour and spices into a bowl.
  2. Melt the butter and syrup.
  3. Separate the eggs. Beat the yolks with the sugar and add to the milk.
  4. Add the melted butter and syrup.
  5. Pour into the flour and mix well.
  6. Add the crystallised ginger and sultanas.
  7. Beat the egg whites till firm and fold into mixture.
  8. Pour into a greased 12-inch yorkshire tin (or two loaf tins as I did) and bake at 350*F for about 45 minutes.
  9. Test with a skewer. Cool on a rack and cut.

Friday, 3 April 2009

Nail Polish & Tissue Paper

Sometimes it really is the little things in life that amuse me. Well, they either amuse me or annoy the crap out of me. In my case, both can occur within seconds of each other. For example: I can be out shopping and there might be a young teenage girl, no more than 13 years old, dressed totally inappropriately for being out in public. Bear in mind it's only just turned April and really still quite cold... Recent examples include a neon pink tube top pulled down to make a "dress", ridiculously high stilettos (or hooker heels as I call them) which clearly are not designed for children, oversized neon yellow fireman's pants, totally transparent white string vests over a blatantly visible bra or really anything else which would be suitably placed in a brothel. Now the fact their parents allow them to go out in public dressed like this says a lot for the society we live in nowadays but that's a whole other post. *lol* What amuses me is that they walk about thinking they look hot! Now I realise they're getting the attention they crave because I'm sat here blogging about them but really? *shakes head in disbelief* It amuses me bacuase I know everyone's laughing at them but it annoys the crap out of me because they symbolise all that is wrong with our society.

This morning as I was on the train on my way to work I was annoyed and amused in the space of about 20 minutes. I was sitting on the train minding my own business and a woman got on. After humphing her bags all about the place (I think her office was having a bring-your-kitchen-sink-to-work-day) she began painting her nails! There is very little ventilation on the train and combined with the heating... OMG... talk about headache inducing! Then as I got off the train there was this guy suntering along in front of me, clearly thinking he looked so cool and "with it" in his nice new shoes and coat. You know the type. The coat he had on though was clearly new and he had the belt fashionably tied behind him - thing is, the idiot had left the protective tissue paper over the buckle!! *lmao*

Oh deary me. What a peculiar world. *lol*

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Little Baker Girl

*dancing around the kitchen* I baked! I baked! I baked!

I seem to be going through this really strange phase at the moment whereby I appear to be enjoying mixing a bunch of ingredients together and producing something extremely sweet and unhealthily fabulous! *lol* It should probably be noted that although I have a degree which incorporated a huge amount of cooking etc, I'm rubbish in the kitchen. I usually use it purely for making coffee (I could rival Starbucks!) and making bowls of cereal. I'm such a non-cook that I actually didn't own a rolling pin or cookie cutters until last weekend when I decided to bake gingerbread men and oatmeal & coconut cookies. Then last week when I was off that random day I baked two loaves of gingerbread and a tray of Scottish vanilla tablet. It should be noted that I used the wrong type of butter in the tablet so it never set. But ho hum, the gingerbread was fab!! *yay*

Thursday, 26 March 2009

If I had a Band and they had an Album...

I've noticed on Facebook that loads of my friends have been completing this little quiz and the results have interested me enough for me to say "I want to do that too". So I did. But not on Facebook. I decided to post it here.

If I were in a band and we wanted to design our first album, we'd rush straight to Facebook (obviously) and follow these trusty instructions:

1.) Go to "Wikipedia." Hit “random”. The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

2.) Go to "Random quotations", The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.

3.) Go to Flickr and click on “explore the last seven days”. Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

4.) Use photoshop or similar to put it all together.

So here it is... Introducing my band, Palais de Reine's first ever album, 'Stop Fighting With Your Thoughts.' After much cynicism here is my album cover and I have to admit that yes, it looks pretty cool. =D Any ideas what else I could use this little quiz theory for?

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

What to do with Myself

I decided to take a random day's annual leave so I'm off today. After getting up super early to take Derek to work, I had a doctor's appointment to go to. Sparing you all the biology lesson, I'd been having some weird tingling and numbness in my leg so I thought it best if I got it checked out. Bottom line (no pun intended) is that I have a trapped sciatic nerve; the big nerve that runs from the lower back right down to the toes. I'm not in any pain but it's weird losing some sensation in your thigh, you know? Anyway it's easily fixed by light exercise. Hmmm, just gotta find the motivation for doing that! *lol*

On a lighter note, I got a new mobile phone! It's a Nokia E71 (looks a lot like a blackberry) and I love it! LOVE IT! It's so sexy and professional looking. =D I feel like such a newbie though 'cos I can hardly use it! I've had Sony Ericssons for the past four years so even getting used to the new interface is like learning a new language. But hey, I'm sure I'll pick it up soon enough.

Ok so like I said I'm off today. I have the car so the world is my oyster. What to do? Where to go? I think I'll start by going to Morrisons for some ingredients so I can bake this afternoon. =) After that, who knows...

Saturday, 21 March 2009

I <3 CR

As you all know I'm a Starbucks addict. LOVE IT! Been to Starbucks in Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, New York, Jersey City, Toronto, Richmond... you get the idea. I'm addicted. It's like a comforter to me - you always know where you're at with a Starbucks. Now, I hold my hands up and say that I'm maybe not as loyal as I used to be because there's a lovely wee Caffe Nero around the corner from my office which I go to a lot, but I'm a Starbucks girl at heart. Well, very recently I discovered a contendor to the Seattle chain... in the form of Coffee Republic. Admittedly I've only been once for coffee so far, a skimmed vanilla latte, which although good confused me as it was served in a totally different shaped mug to the usual Starbucks form I'm used to. *lol* I know what you're thinking. What attracted me? Believe it or not it was something as simple as their logo. I *heart* CR. Now, I don't hear that very often...

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Revitalised Thanks to Sleep

I feel very revived this week.

Sunday night was the first night in months I’ve managed to get a full eight hours sleep ‘cos Jazz didn’t waken me! =D I even managed it again last night! Yay! Seriously, having a cat is as hard as a baby at times (I’m guessing) ‘cos he can wake you up three times in the middle of the night. If he’s not clambering about on my pillow he’s pulling stuff off the bedside table and if he’s not doing that he’s purring right in my face. Thing is, you take one look at him and you cannot be angry with him, even though you reeeeeally want to be! Is this a face you can stay mad at? *awww*

This whole week's been good. I've been managing to get my early(ish) train every day and had lots of work to be getting on with so the days have gone quite fast. Plus the boss is keeping out my way so I can be extra productive! I feel like I've had loads of time to myself this week which is fab! Means I've been reading loads, playing Mario Kart loads (*lol* btw if any of you guys reading this have a Wii console number of Mario Kart licence number please let me know 'cos I only have one MK friend and he's never online!) done ironing, placed a huge Avon order and made a babygrow for yet another customer. On Monday night I felt totally energised - so much so that I ironed the mountain of clothes piling up in the spare room before spending a good hour straightening my hair. I can barely remember the last time it was straight – I can never be bothered and usually throw it back out the way. I couldn’t stop running my fingers through it on Tuesday ‘cos it was so silky soft! *lol* Let’s hope this productivity stays with me for the rest of the week!

Happy Birthday Louise!

Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday to You,
Happy Birthday dear Louise,
Happy Birthday to You.


Monday, 16 March 2009

My Literary Dilemma

I just finished reading Sophie Kinsella’s latest book, Remember Me? It reminded me just how much I miss reading. When I was younger I used to read loads, and I mean loads! I must have read the entire Sweet Valley High and The Babysitters Club series’. Oh, and the Sweet Dreams series. I remember when they made SWH and TBS into TV shows – I was hooked! It was like a dream come true lol.

I see that Sophie Kinsella also writes as Madeleine Wickham in a whole other set of books. Since I’ve read all of her Shopaholic ones and the other SK ones she’s written I think it’s time I move on to MW. But I have a million books in the house to read first. What a dilemma lol.

Since we made the decision to move, I have packed up two boxes of stuff; one of extreme winter and summer clothes (scarves, gloves, bikini’s and shorts *lol*) and one of books. It’s not much, I realise that, but it’s a start. To give you an insight into my tastes, here are a selection of the books in my collection: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon, Relentless by Simon Kernick, Marshmallows for Breakfast by Dorothy Koomson, Sushi for Beginners by Marian Keyes, The House at Riverton by Kate Morton and The Rice Mother by Rani Manicka.

Quite a variety! *lol* Oh btw, I decided what to read next: The Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella. After that I've officially read all of her books. =)

Friday, 13 March 2009

Random Fact of the Day

I guess it’s true: you do learn something new every day. Take today for instance. I went on to Wikipedia, clicked on random article and learned that Midtronden is a 6,759 ft high mountain with two peaks in the Rondane mountain range in Dovre, Oppland, Norway. Useless? Perhaps. But just think what would happen if I ever found myself on Who Wants to be a Millionaire and the question “Which mountain range is Midtronden part of?” I’d know the answer!! =D

But all joking aside, this got me thinking. How great would it be to teach yourself a new fact or word or literary titbit each and every day? Imagine how fast your knowledge bank would grow in just a matter of weeks! Imagine how vast it could be! When I was at high school I had to learn 20 new words of volabulary in French and Italian after every other class and I’m certain it paid off. So today I learned the Norwegian mountain fact. Plus I learned that in Norwegian “Midtronden is a mountain with two peaks in Oppland” is “Midtronder er eij Fjell med to toppar i Oppland.” How cool is that?? =D

Oh, and on a total tangent, I got the weirdest piece of mail today at work! I got a letter from an organisation called Cambridge Who’s Who claiming that I was “recently proposed as a biographical candidate to represent Lanarkshire in the 2009/2010 online Cambridge Who’s Who Registry among Executives and Professionals.” Sounds swanky! Apparently they think I’d make an interesting biographical subject. Hmmm… I’m sceptical. It all looks like a bit of a scam to me - a database of people with jobs who will probably end up having to pay for the priviledge of having their name on a website. Straight in the recycling it goes lol.

Thursday, 12 March 2009


“The first step in getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want.” [Benjamin Stein]

Welcome to my blog. I imagine that most of my readers are my friends and family so hi guys. =D Should you be a completely random person, unknown to me, who stumbled upon my little space on the internet, welcome. In any case, feel free to leave comments or e-mail me. It’s nice to know people are reading this. =)

You’re probably wondering what the quote at the top of the page is all about, right? Well I was looking for something inspirational but not too cheesy and while looking for inspiration I came across this. It just seems to fit my life right now. I ’m almost 29 and still feel almost as clueless as I did when I was 22 and had just graduated uni. I didn’t really know what I wanted then and not, seven years later, I still don’t really know. So recently I’ve been trying to decide what I really want out of life and the simple fact is that in order to get what I want, I first need to know what I want. That’s a given, right? Sounds easy? Ha! It’s not. I want the same as everyone else in that I want to be rich and successful, I want to be recognised, and I want to be happy and healthy (not necessarily in that order) but it’s easier said than done. One thing that I’m certain I want more than anything else is to be happy and I know exactly what will get that ball rolling… living in Edinburgh again. I appreciate that I began my married life in the West and in the past four years I’ve matured so much and developed and grown so much in myself that it’s hard not to feel an affinity with my current home. But I’m a capital city girl at heart and having lived in Glasgow for almost four years I’m ready to go home. I miss it so much. =( Last month we took the first steps in making that dream a reality… we put down a deposit on a house in Edinburgh. The missives have since been signed so there’s no going back!

Welcome to EH14.