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Knitting

I promised to make a hat for a friend, but the pattern was so badly written and so unnecessarily complicated that after the ribbing I hurled it across the room and designed my own way of doing it.  I think it came out great.  It's a high contrast, simple colorwork design that my geeky self delighted in naming "Your Last Battlefield" .  Several people actually giggled when I showed it to them and told them the name, so I guess it's not too obscure.


Black and white hat photo

What'cha think?

I woke up early this am to the sound of NOT rain. Finally. After 5-6 straight days of it I had had enough. We’re up so high, no flood problems here and I have very little mud (considering) but enough was enough. 

I foresee lots of mowing, once it dries out enough to mow, that is. The horses are happy, anyway. They are up to their ankles in grass and it’s waay too wet to ride, so this is ideal from their point of view. Of course, it’s going to be 85F (30C) today and super humid, so the bugs will be out in force, but by then their loyal servant (me) will have them in their stalls with their fans on.

Howcome I don’t get this kind of service?

Anyone actually go to the Royal Wedding celebration as opposed to watching on the telly?  I'm afraid I didn't even do that much, but I'm relieved that it went off without incident. 
 

Still Alive (barely)

So:  it's been ages since I've been here.  I apologise for dropping out of sight like I did, and for leaving poor Watson in the Stationmaster's cubby - LOL.  I imagine Holmes will still welcome him when he finally does arrive, though (and he will arrive - eventually).

DH has had health problems and so have I, although I won't go into those.  I've also been maundering around in the 15th century for a while, mentally, at least.  If anyone was worried about me, I'm OK, just a bit battered by Life in General. 

The good news is that I've been working along on my Hiatus Epic, which may eventually see the light of day if there's anyone out there still interested.  I've been wanting to come back here, but you know how it is- the longer you're gone, the harder it seems to get started back again. 

Crossposting this and waving vigourously to everyone who is around.  Sorry for my own hiatus, but I'll try and be more of a regular again.  LJ and now DW have been a part of my life for so long and I've missed them - and you guys - a lot. 

I may even try and join y'all on Tumblr, although I still can't seem to like it.

Tags:

Christmas Cheer?

So...I have a meeting/Christmas party to go to tonight and I decided to play happy housewife (for a change) and make salmon mousse.  I have a cool mould and everything.  I learnt one thing - Evap milk won't whip!  I know I've done it before, but I couldn't get it to do even in the Vita-Mix. 

Maybe they've changed the composition since the recipe was written?  Maybe I should have been wearing a frilly apron?  dunno.  Anyway, it's chillin' in the fridge and only time will tell if I have a mould or dip, or at worst, disgusting ooze.  Oh, well.

Then I came back upstairs and my PC was dead.  Gone.  Zip.  Nada.  So after some pretty heroic cursing, it was determined that the UPS battery had failed with no warning.  Sigh.  Anyway, PCs running again, but no printer and no backup power. 

I knew I  should have put on that frilly apron.

Vitaly Solomin

Russian actor Vitaly Solomin would have turned 76 today.  He played an absolutely perfect Watson in the Lenfilm series the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.  (the 'old' Russian Holmes series)  Here is a link to a lovely youtube video tribute to Solomin:  www.youtube.com/watch

Happy birthday Vitaly Solomin!

I was recently sent this link from WelcomeHolmes, I think.  It seems that Dan Posnansky's extensive collection of Holmes/Doyle memorabilia is going up for auction in a week or so.  That's exciting in itself, but most (all) of the items are out of my reach.  However, the catalog is a free download in .pdf format or you can look at it on line and boy is it interesting!  Well worth the look in. 
Here is the link to a Wordpress article about it.  dinneratmarcinis.wordpress.com/2017/12/10/auction-the-sherlock-holmes-collection-of-dan-posnansky-a-little-freebie/

The download link is about 1/2 way down the page. 

Title: Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Morning
Author
</a></b></a>tripleransom 
Rating
: G
Universe: ACD
Characters: John Watson
Summary: Watson reaches a decision, but will Holmes welcome the renewal of their old friendship?

Author's Note:  ARGH.  I'm a day off.  Somehow, I was convinced my day was Saturday.  My apologies.  Here is my ficlet anyway, which will be continued on my second posting day.  (assuming I can remember to do it correctly!)

Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Morning

 

I crumpled up yet another abortive story attempt and threw it in the general direction of the grate and sighed, wearily scrubbing my hands over my face.  The house was quiet - too quiet - and I was getting nowhere with trying to write.  Reaching a decision at last, I pulled a telegraph form to me, addressed it,  and scribbled a few quick words. 

Have you holiday guests?. If not, may I come? 

JW

Hastily, I rang the bell for Susan before I could change my mind.  

When she appeared, I handed her the form and told her to have it sent immediately.  She curtsied and left with it. 

I poured myself another drink and awaited the reply with some trepidation. 

Some hours later, Susan reappeared at the door with a telegram on the tray.  "Your reply, sir," she said and handed it to me.  I looked at the envelope for several minutes before I screwed up the courage to open it.

Come at once [it read] Train arrives ten o'clock am weekdays

SH

*********

I had not seen Holmes more than  a handful of times in the several years since his retirement to the Sussex Downs and my subsequent remarriage.  He had been invited to the wedding, of course, and had duly arrived, shaken my hand, kissed Emmaline's hand and departed.   Oh, we corresponded occasionally and I had not meant to let the time go by, but there was Emmaline to consider and there always seemed to be some demands on my time that prevented me from going down to the country. 

Having made the break, Holmes seemed not to wish to return to London at all, except on the infrequent occasion when he had some urgent business to conduct.  We met for lunch, but our old easy cameraderie was missing.  We seemed uneasy with each other, as if we were nothing more than polite acquaintances fulfilling some social duty.   

In the old days, our conversations had been free-ranging, covering any and all topics that came to Holmes's brilliant mind.  Now, there seemed to be so many subjects that both of us shied away from.  It made for stilted encounters that devolved into banal small talk and trended to awkward silences.  I mourned the loss of our old easy friendship, but I could not think of any way to regain it.  When we parted, we always pledged not to make it so long until the next time, but the times between meetings grew longer rather than shorter.

Then a telegram came from Holmes at a time when I happened to be away from the house and Emmaline somehow misplaced it.  When she remembered it, the time for our meeting had passed.  Torn between loyalties, I was loath to try and explain to Holmes what had happened and so the distance between us became a yawning chasm.

In any case, Holmes seemed happy enough with his new life and I began to think that he missed me not at all.  I certainly missed him - fiercely at first, then with a sort of steady slow ache, like the pain from a missing limb that never quite went away.  Marriage, I found - at least to Emmaline - was no sort of substitute for the companionship I had lost.

In the beginning, I had optimistically hoped that she and Holmes might at least tolerate each other, or form some alliance as he and Mary eventually had, but that hope was dashed at the wedding when they took each other's measure at a glance and the hostility was as plain as if battle flags had actually been waved.  Emmaline eventually began  to resent my continued publication of our adventures together, even though the resulting revenue formed a large part of our income.   It was that which drove the first wedge between us, although I suppose our separation was inevitable in any case. 

Eventually, Emmaline, no doubt weary of my tendency to live increasingly for my writing - for there, at least, I could re-live some of Holmes's and my vanished closeness -  announced that she was leaving for an extended visit to her relatives in America.  Neither of us was under any illusions that she really intended to return.  With myself as the sole occupant, I found the house too quiet and as the Christmas season approached, I grew increasingly low in spirits, until finally, driven to desperation, I chanced it all on a telegram to Holmes.

***************

So it was that I found myself, suitcase in hand, standing on a deserted platform in the small hamlet of Eastbourne,  watching my train disappear into the wooded landscape and wondering if I had made a colossal mistake. 

 

TBC…

Eggnog

I am reliably informed that eggnog is largely an American thing - who knew? 

[personal profile] smallhobbit  - you wanted this, so here you go!

I know lots of people say they hate eggnog.  If all you've ever had is store-bought 'nog, I can understand that.  The store bought stuff is uniformly awful - at least every kind I've ever tried is.  No matter how you try and doctor it up, it's just awful, probably because it has to be sterilised, pasteurised, emulsified, and Lord knows what-all so that it will keep for weeks. 

But the Real McCoy - that's something else again.  My paternal grandmother, always known as Mother Helen, made the best 'nog.  Ma always used her recipe and that's the stuff I grew up on.  Ma was a fanatical teetotaler, but yet she used to give my sister and me from age 5 or so a nice glass of the stuff on Christmas morning.  Maybe she did it on purpose - there was certainly no running around and screaming at our house.  When you read the recipe, you will understand why. 

Watch it, though.  It will sneak up on you.  You don't notice how much alcohol is in there, until it's too late.  Of course, feel free to modify the amount, but this is the original.  I usually do cut it down to about 1-1/2 pints.  Ma always used Four Roses, which is a blended whisky and that's the way I like it.  Mother Helen probably used straight Bourbon.  You can also use rum, but it will be a good bit sweeter that way. 

Yes, it uses raw eggs.  All I can say is that it's been handed down in my family for well over 100 years and I never heard tell of anyone getting sick from it, but you have to decide if it's worth the risk, I suppose.  Anyway, here it is.  If you make it, I'd love to hear what you think.

One more thing - feel free to cut the quantities in half if you don't want so much.  I usually make it for parties and there's not normally much left over, but it will keep for several days in the fridge.  The whole recipe does make quite a lot.  Make sure you have a big enough bowl to hold it.


Mother Helen's Eggnog

12 eggs
1 1/2 cups of sugar (total)
2 pints of heavy whipping cream
2 pints 1/2 and 1/2 (can use all cream)
2 pints whiskey (or to taste)
1 pinch of Cream of Tartar

Separate the eggs. 
Beat the whites with the Cream of Tartar and gradually add 1/2 cup of the sugar.  Beat until very stiff. 
In another bowl, beat the yolks and add 1 cup of sugar while beating until creamy.  Put in a large bowl.
In yet another bowl, beat 2 pints of whipping cream until stiff.

Stir the 2 pints of 1/2 and 1/2 into the egg yolks.
Stir the whiskey into the egg yolks mixture.
Stir the whipped cream gently into the egg yolks mixture.
Fold the beaten egg whites into the egg yolks mixture.
Stir.

Serve very cold with a sprinkle of nutmeg if desired.
Enjoy with caution!



WAdvent

How's everyone coming with their WAdvent offerings? 

It's going to be a lively December, with Holmistice postings also starting on the 1st.  Bring on the Holmes!  (um...AND the Watsons!)

Nostalgia

Anybody else miss the good ol' days when you could hardly keep up with your friend's feed because of all the new entries? And that was just LJ, let alone DW. Sigh - I do miss those times.

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