Hello February. Most of the kiddies are back at school and folks have returned to work after the holiday season. The roads are busier first thing in the morning, not that we're out there mind you, it's just that Peter and I can hear the stream of traffic going past our house from about 6.30am onwards. Ho hum, I yawn quietly as I pull the linen sheet up over my head before drifting back into slumber for another hour or longer. So are the days of our lives in retirement.
For those who are almost old enough to retire, but not quite, hang in the there, your time will come. And when it does, it's bloody delicious. You're going to be busier than you could have ever imagined! For those spring chickens who hate the drudge of getting up and going to work every day, enjoy it while you are young, and fit enough to do so. The reality is that every day is a gift, and you are blessed to be alive. ♥
In my kitchen - February
I was trying to think of some good things to showcase for this month's In My Kitchen (IMK) and, for a time, it looked as though there would be nothing to see. We've been decluttering the entire house since the holiday seasons, you see, so there really wasn't anything new or exciting to share with you. (Incidentally, I WILL soon publish a feature on the art of decluttering, so watch out for that one). In fact, I DO have a few things to share with you, starting with the cast iron teapot and cup pictured at the top of this page - a Christmas or birthday gift from Peter, who knows how much I love my mid-afternoon peppermint and camomile infusion. Aren't they pretty?
Also in my kitchen are a couple of stencilled tea towels bought from The Art of Banksy Exhibition that we visited in Melbourne during December. I'm not sure they will be used for drying dishes, because they are our favourite Banksy pieces. Peter would like to stretch them over timber frames and hang them on a wall. I love the 'Girl with the Red Balloon'. The symbolism of this is said to be that there is always hope - a mantra that is dear to my heart.
Another of my favourite tea towels is the one shown with vividly-red poppies on the right (above), drying on the clothesline. I bought it at Stonehenge in Wiltshire a couple of years ago. In one sense it's almost too pretty to use. You might think of me as weird, but seeing linen drying outside in the fresh air and sunshine always brings a smile to my face.
In my kitchen is this sweet little set of measuring bowls, bought for a couple of dollars at an Op shop. It's by Anna Gare and was brand new in its original box. It's hard to believe that it may have been an unwanted gift and I'm ever-so pleased that it now graces my kitchen window sill.
Adding a hint of smokiness to the air my kitchen is this cast iron smoker box (above) filled with hickory wood chips. I found it at the back of a cupboard when I was in the throes of decluttering. We bought it from Aldi years ago but had never used it, until recently. I must say, it works brilliantly and we've been enjoying delicately smoked salmon fillets. I will write about this in the fullness of time.
A basket of goodies from the generous people at Australian Macadamias arrived just in time for this post. Australian macadamias have a unique, velvety-soft crunch and buttery flavour. They're perfect as a snack, but also add taste and texture to all kinds of dishes - both savoury and sweet. In the basket were products from a variety of Aussie producers and growers, including a B.O.N.K. macadamia nut cracker; Byron Bay macadamia muesli; Byron Bay Chocolate; Rainforest Foods Mac-Cao spread; fresh macadamias in the shell; honey and lemon myrtle Macadamias, and roasted macadamias; a Go Natural macadamia bar; Patons chocolate macadamias; a bottle of lemon myrtle macadamia oil. There was also a cookbook titled Fabulous Flavours of Australia by Jill Richardson.
Also in my kitchen...
Saroo Brierley's memoir, Lion (previously published as A Long Way Home), is at the top of my reading pile. I've seen the movie twice and found it to be such an amazingly powerful story. I cannot wait to read the book. Have you seen the film or read the book?
And lastly, there is (almost always) a vase of flowers on my kitchen bench. Lilies are among my favourites, particularly the white ones. I love that they take ages to open fully, look stunning, last well and have a delicate perfume. What's your favourite flower?
Join the IMK Community...
Welcome back, friends! Thank you so much to the band of bloggers who joined up for the December IMK. It was lovely to pop in to your 'place' and see all the good things going in in your kitchen. ツ
If you are a food blogger and would like to share the good things in your kitchen with my readership, I would love to hear from you - no matter where you live in the world. Simply publish an IMK post on your own food blog BEFORE the 10th of the month and leave me a comment below (include your name and the link). I will add you to the sidebar list of blogger friends participating this month.
All I ask is that you give me a shout out on your post and kindly link back to my blog, Good Things. I would also love it if you would please take a moment to say hi and leave me a nice comment (not just the link to your own post), and also please do visit the other blogs and say hello... because it's good to feel loved.
It's your turn now, dear Good Things readers. Tell me, what's happening in your February kitchen? Are you back at work and have the children gone back to school? Or are you like me and now relishing the quiet life after the holidays? Do please take a moment to leave me a comment, even if you are not a food blogger. I read every comment and really appreciate hearing from you.
I'm Liz, a.k.a Bizzy Lizzy,
the writer, cook and traveller behind
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.