New Year’s Resolution – Check!

One of my New Year’s resolutions this year was to take a cooking course – I achieved this on Saturday with the help of Emily and the Cheshire Cookery School (  We were introduced to and then prepared a couple of creations with the framework that they could be used in order to help host a “stylish” dinner party.  They were simple to make but looked impressive – chicken enrusted with a herb topping served with cous cous followed with chocolate fondant and vanilla cream.  The school was quite impressive and had all the latest equipment.  It was well designed with a lecture style seating area and a dining area where we ate the products of our hard work and there were also friendly staff who had all the ingredients prepared and then cleared up after us when we’d made a mess.  It was a bit on the pricey side but very nice for a one off treat.  Emily and I are both keen to do another cooking course before the end of the year and we have our eyes on a vegetarian school at Claremont Farm for our next session (

cooking class

On Saturday afternoon once I’d got home, Paul and I carried on with some work in the garden loading up bags of soil as we attempt to clear away the raised bed and retaining wall from the back yard of the house.  Nothing much grew in the area anyways due to the shade and it should give us more space to sit and enjoy the outdoors.  The layout of our yard with the access steps makes it awkward to get heavy things in and out though so everything has to be moved by hand.  Hard work.

On Sunday there was more garden work after a beautiful walk on a cold and bright spring morning at Thurstaston with Stella.  The views from the top were fantastic.  In the afternoon, we had a little birthday party for Paul (not my Paul, Jayne’s Paul) whose birthday is on Thursday.  We made birthday cards and had a couple of games of hide & seek before having fajitas.  (These were a bit too adventurous for the younger ones and essentially turned into cheese sandwiches for them!)  The swiss roll/ice cream cake went down well again.

wales panorama

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It’s still very cold in the mornings at the moment but when the sun comes out in the afternoon the temperature is getting up to 10c or so. Have we turned the corner on a very long UK winter?  We’ll see how the rest of the week unfolds…. J