Friday, 17 August 2012

What I've Googled this week #4

WIGTW took a short holiday (which was at the same time I went, coincidentally) but is back. Hooray I hear you say.

Here are some of the random things I’ve typed into Google this week. (Any one else really missing the Olympic themed game google doodles?)

Jason Manford Blog

I’d read that Mr Manford had a pop at the trolls that were saying disgusting things about Gary Barlow following the loss of his daughter, and his performance at the Olympic closing ceremony.

I decided to read his blog post, and am glad that I did. It’s a beautifully written piece, and I hope it goes some way to shaming the supposed human beings who wrote such awful things. I agree with every word Jason says.

If you’d like to read it (I urge you to), go here

St John Ambulance

I’m a qualified First Aider (in the work place), and enjoyed the training & the thought of helping people so much that I want to go a step further. My dream job when I was little was to be a paramedic, and I’m unsure as to why I didn’t follow that career path now. There’s still time I suppose. Anyway, I’ve contacted the St John’s Ambulance with a view to getting more training, and volunteering for them at events in and around Cambridge.

Stomach Ulcer Symptoms
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I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that I’m a sufferer of IBS. This is what the Docs say you have when they essentially don’t know what makes you feel so ill. I won’t go into too much detail but cramps, bloating and toilet issues are a daily recurrence in my life, and it’s difficult to manage because what you react to can change on a daily/weekly/monthly basis.

The pain I get has changed recently, it’s more of a burning, acidic pain and it’s in a different place than usual. To me, it feels like an ulcer, hence why I did some research on it. I’m not sure if I fit the demographic of people who usually get stomach ulcers, but I’ve decided to take action and have booked a docs appt for a weeks time, and until then will be keeping a food, pain and toilet diary so an assessment can be made. Fingers crossed it gets sorted, as I’m not sure how much longer I can cope with being doubled over in pain regularly!

September & November Birthstone
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September = Steve's birthday, November = mine. I can’t remember now why I wanted to know what our birthstones are, but FYI – his is sapphire and mine is topaz. Lovely stuff.

Centre Parcs
Its Steve's birthday in 2 weeks, happily landing on a Saturday this year. We have his daughter with us for the day, so I am looking into day passes (we're only 30 min drive from the Elveden Forest CP) for the 3 of us to have a day there, splashing around in pools, riding bikes and generally having fun.

What have you Googled this week?

Rachel x

p.s - apologies for the dodgy image sizes. Blogger seems to have taken a real dislike to me uploading more than 2 pics to my blog. Clearly need to take better pics!!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Cornwall #6 - Holywell Bay and Seafood

Our last proper day of holiday was spent at Holywell Bay. It was a bit chillier this day, so I mostly sunbathed wearing a cardigan (not very effective for getting a tan, FYI). The eight of us dug a hole, which was about 7ft deep.

We stopped off for cream teas on the way back to the house which were YUM (cup of tea + scone + jam + cornish clotted cream = cream tea).

Steve and I headed off on our own for a romantic meal at the Boathouse in Newquay that evening, where we gorged on smoked mackerel, crab, mussles (him, not me. They look like bogeys and for that reason I can't eat them) and wine.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Cornwall #5 – Boat Fetish & Feeder

On Thursday we headed to Falmouth for a wander. Its basically just a harbour where big cruise and transport ships are built and docked. I didn’t take any pictures here as I don’t have a boat fetish (as one of the lads we were with claimed he did). We had a nice lunch then headed back to the ranch for more drinks and hot tub time.

The highlight of the day, and possibly the whole holiday, was going to see Feeder that evening at Lusty Glaze. Lusty Glaze is a cove, and because of its shape and layout, it’s a natural amphitheatre. Lots of bands play here and we were lucky to have timed it with Feeder, who I really like (you all know Buck Rogers right?), so we drank cider, watched the sunset, saw a streaker and rocked out in the sand. Good times were had by all.

Guess who? Yeah, thats me. And Steve. I've never put pics of us on here before...I'm a bit scared.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Cornwall #4 - Fistral Beach

I will try to keep my poor attempts at surfer speak to a minimum during this post. Dude. Steve and I took a day on our own to go hang ten at Fistral beach. It wasn’t the prettiest beach we visited all week, but the waves were gnarly. Dude.
We hired body boards and wet suits and played in the sea all day like children. I did manage to ride a few waves (they were massive, it was a little bit scary) but mainly wiped out A LOT.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Cornwall #3 - Wadebridge to Padstow

I cant say I’ve ever been very active on previous holidays. I’m more of a ‘this is my sunbathing spot, I have my book, I don’t intend to move now bring me a cocktail’ kinda gal. So when a bike ride was suggested, I was intrigued. Movement on holiday....really?! Not wanting to be a party-pooper I went along with it and was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed myself.

We hired bikes in Wadebridge and cycled the 5 and-a-bit miles down to Padstow. I felt so care-free and refreshed with the wind blowing through my hair as I cycled along. We cycled along a disused railway line which had been cemented over, along the river leading to the coast. It was so beautiful and it reignited my love for cycling.  I haven’t been on a bike since taking part in a 100km bike ride a couple of years ago and being put off by the pain from that!

I fell in love with the bike I was riding (similar to this one) and am saving up to buy myself one now. It was such a comfy ride and when I do buy it, Steve and I can go for long countryside rides at the weekends and I can realise my ‘dream’ of cycling to work!

When we got to Padstow (the cycle ride took us 40 mins with a few photo opportunity stops along the way) we stopped off and had fish and chips for lunch, a snoop round the shops and a wander around the harbour. We had a few drinks in the pub and cycled back in the sunset. Aahhhhh heavenly....

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Cornwall #2 - The Eden Project

I'd heard mixed reviews of the Eden Project. As we were only a 30 min drive away, we decided to investigate for ourselves. I loved it, although the rainforest biodome with its heat and humidity was hard going with a hangover! I can highly recommend a visit here if you're in the area and like pretty flowers.

p.s - remember to take a hayfever pill, yeah? I forgot, spent the day sniffling with streaming eyes. Attractive, no?


Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Beetroot & Feta Soup

Initially, I felt as dubious about this recipe as you probably do right now.

I like beetroot, I like feta, but together?!

But, bear with me. The result is gooooood and surprisingly, beetroot and feta are a match made in foody heaven.

Here goes....

You will need:
  • 3-4 medium (apple-sized) beetroot (about 500-600g/1lb 2oz-1lb5oz, grated coarsely, or chopped into small dice
  • 500g/1lb 2oz ripe tomatoes, halved
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped roughly
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive or sunflower oil
  • 500ml/16½fl oz good strong stock (beef is best, but chicken or vegetable will do)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 125g/4oz Greek feta cheese
We used fresh beetroot from our veggy patch...yummy.


1. Place the halved tomatoes in an ovenproof dish. Throw over the garlic and drizzle over half the olive oil.

2. Roast for 25-30 minutes in a fairly hot oven (190C/375F/Gas 5) until soft and pulpy. Rub through a sieve to remove the skin and pips.

3. Heat the remaining oil in a pan and sweat the onion for a few minutes until soft. Add the beetroot and the stock and bring to the boil. Season lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Simmer gently for 7-10 minutes until the beetroot is tender.

4. Stir in the tomato purée, transfer the soup to a blender and process until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary

5. Divide between warm bowls and crumble over a little feta into each bowl. Serve with crusty bread.


No awards will be won here for photography. Or presentation. But it tasted hella' good!

A quick, easy, cockle-warming soup. THAT'S PINK. Who doesn't love pink food?

Bon appetit!

Rachel x

Monday, 6 August 2012

Cornwall #1 - Crantock Beach

Its high time I shared what we got up to during our week in Cornwall, isn't it?

In the weeks prior to us going, we saw rain of biblical proportions, freezing cold nights, and even hail stones in some parts of the country. I was so worried that our holiday would be a total washout, and it made packing very difficult. There is not one outfit combination I didn't take - from wellies to sandals, bikinis to waterproof jackets and fleeces, I had all outcomes covered.

My pack-a-thon was a  wasted effort though - when we arrived it was a wonderful 28 degrees, and stayed that was the whole week, meaning that I wore in total about a third of what I took with me, mainly pretty dresses and bikinis. It was heaven, and I managed to get a tan. Score.

I think I'll split what we did into several posts. Yes, yes I will do that. I, for once, took a zillion photos, some with my proper camera and some with my i-Phone. So expect the following posts to be rather image heavy, but they are well worth it. Cornwall is literally stunning, I feel so lucky to have been able to enjoy it in the sun, with copious wine.

Day 1:
We headed to Crantock beach on our first day, and sizzled on the sand all day. We paddled in the sea, ate ice creams, and all got a little bit sun burnt. Typical Brits, ey?!

The evening was spent BBQ-ing in our garden (we rented a huge house for the week) and relaxing in the hot tub.

Stay tuned for day 2!

Rachel x

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Baby you're a firework.

Last night, Steve & I headed to Rugby with some of my work colleagues to see some fireworks. A fireworks championship infact! 4 pyrotechnic companies went head to head to put on the best 10 minute display to music.

I'm a lover of fireworks in general, 5th November may well be my favourite day after Christmas.

The shows were breathtaking, I've literally never seen the sky light up the way it did. The music was great, much wine was drunk, I got to know my new colleagues under the influence of alcohol and all in all, was a different and fun Saturday night.

As usual, my pictures aren't great (I WILL start taking better pics) but hopefully you can get the jist of just how truly spectacular they were.

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