Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Rice Fritters

When talking to my dear friend, Isabel, the other day she mentioned that her children had always liked Rice Fritters (and now in their 50's still do).

I had never heard of Rice Fritters and they didn't sound very interesting but she gave me the recipe and yesterday I had some left-over rice and made some.  They were delicious.  Not very exciting to look at!

Here is the recipe.

Beat 2 eggs with 1/4 cup flour, 1 heaped tsp baking powder and 2 tbsp milk.
Add 1 cup cooked rice
         1 cup grated cheese
         1 finely chopped onion and salt and pepper

fry spoonfuls in hot greased pan and enjoy.

I made half this quantity and used gluten free flour.  I also substituted some red capsicum for the onion and had them with capsicum chutney.  Some salad would have been nice but I didn't have any.

The half quantity made three quite large fritters and I ate them all.  The cheese melted and was yummy.  (They could have been called Cheese Fritters.

It was another cold day and it is amazing how cats can find any bit of warmth.  Kim found some sun by the bookcase.

At 3.30 p.m. Bruce, who built our house in 1967, brought me a load of firewood for the pot-belly stove.  We were getting showers at that stage but I kept going until 5.15 p.m. and got it all moved to the shed and stacked.  I had been getting very low so it is a good feeling to know I have plenty once again.

Friday, June 22, 2012


Victoria, our grand-daughter is 24 today.  She still has the lovely smile (but with teeth now!)

Isn't she gorgeous.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cat Flap

When we purchased this house there was already a cat flap in the laundry door.  Very handy.  A few months ago I noticed that the hair on Kath's back looked as though it had been shaved in a strip about 11/2 inches wide at the bottom of her spine.

The only cause I can think of that is the cat flap.  A friend was staying and he sanded the top of the flap and I put some duct tape on the bottom and it appeared to be solving the problem.  I have since put more tape at the top.

When I took her for her "Warrant of fitness" about 5 weeks ago I mentioned this to the vet whose only other suggestion was that she could be over licking it.  Of course, it was a lot better at that stage.  I have never seen her licking her back and it recently started to get worse again so I have blocked off the cat flap to see if it improves.  It has now moved higher up her back and is in small patches.  She seems to be completely unaware of it so it is not itchy or sore.

Kim doesn't have this problem but she is smaller and has much thicker shorter fur.

The way the cat flap has been fitted I am unable to put a larger one in but if the problem clears up with the flap blocked off I may have to buy a new one and see if that is better.   It could, of course, be something else, or somewhere else such as a fence she goes under.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Stone Wall

On May 30th I posted that I was gradually clearing the ladder fern on our rock wall.  It is a lengthy process as I put some in my wheelie bin each week and that is generally enough anyway as it is quite hard work pulling the plants out.

This afternoon the sun shone so I decided to remove some more.  Naturally, I had help.  In the top photo Kim is just above the wheelbarrow heading in my direction.  Unfortunately, the fern on the left is going to be harder to remove - I know as I have tried.  Still, that is for next week.

Of course, it will grow back again but, hopefully, it will take some time to get as large as it was to start with.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday walk - 18th June

The forecast, once again for a Monday, was for rain and storms, however, we were lucky as the rain held off until after our walk.

Today's walk was at A.H. Reed Park.  I had done part of it before but not all.  Only seven of us today but it was most enjoyable.

 The photo above is looking up at a Kauri on the kauri boardwalk and the photo below is its trunk.  It was massive

The white on the above photo is a waterfall.  It was a bit of a goat track at this point and this was the best photo I could get safely.
Afterwards we went to Cafe Narnia for coffee and a chat.  Just as we were leaving the rain started and when I got home it came on quite heavily.  Temperature then dropped and when I checked this afternoon it was 10 degrees C.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Saturday 16th June

Quite a day.  First thing I had a phone call letting me know that a friend, who I have known since coming to New Zealand in 1965 and now lives in Sydney, had come home to find her partner on the couch.  When she tried to wake him she realised he was dead.  In the meantime  his son phoned the ambulance which duly arrived.  Her G.P. who she had only just visited arrived but, apparently, used the wrong form for the death certificate which meant that she ended up with the coroner coming and the police.  She looks after children for a solicitor and she phoned up in the middle of all this and also came to the flat.  I really don't know how so many people managed to fit into the small flat but they did.  It was all most traumatic for her.  Finding J. dead was bad enough but to have all the extra drama was too much.  She is also due to have a thyroid operation in August and has trouble talking and swallowing.

I phoned her later in the day and, in the circumstances, she sounded quite good.

When I received the call I was just about to go on a walk with a lady I met a couple of weeks ago.  We went to A.H. Reed Park in Whareora Road and walked alongside the river to the Whangarei Falls.  It took us an hour there and back.  That was long enough for me as the Scottish Country Dancing yesterday was quite tiring.

After a quick lunch I then went to a Scottish Country Dancing School being held in Kamo for more experienced dancers (just to watch).

On coming home I had a phone message to say that my hubby had two more falls today.  I just don't know what can be done about this (I was even thinking of bringing him home but then reality came to the fore and I realise that would not help anyone).

Still it was a beautiful sunny day but with a chill wind from the snowy south.

I took this last photo on the drive home to show what a lovely day it was although I wasn't very hopeful of it coming out.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thursday 14th June.

I had planned a catch up day with jobs that needed doing at home - housework, tax return, splitting firewood, pruning etc etc - the day would not have been long enough.

This morning I got a phone call to say that M. had a fall last night and was still unsteady on his feet so after I did some necessary errands I visited him.  He is having hallucinations again and didn't make a lot of sense but, luckily, had not hurt himself even though the carers found him flat on his back.  He has a habit of walking leaning backwards (I presume something to do with the Parkinson's.

Anyway, I got home late for lunch but went ahead and roasted some vegies to have with a lamb steak and had this with a glass of Merlot.  Consequently, I felt sleepy and put my feet up to have a short read and fell asleep for an hour until a neighbour knocked on the door.

I then got up and split another load of firewood and picked some flowers.  The two different camellias give some added colour to the garden at this time of year.  The yellow flower I don't know the name of.  I had a red one and bought a pink and the yellow one earlier in the year and this is the first flower on the yellow.  They seem quite happy in shade.  Perhaps someone will tell me its name.

I just noticed the candlestick that Cro gave me many years ago in the first pic so will take one of it.  (I assume it is a candlestick although I haven't used it as that.)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

It feels like winter

13 degrees C. seems to be the top temperature today.  It is one of those cloudy days with a chill wind from the south.  I walked into Kamo first thing but then came home and lit the trusty pot-belly stove.  I have had some beef shins and veggies simmering most of the day making a stock for some vegetable soup.

Over the past week I have had a few walks and also visited my other half who is going more and more into his own world.  I am keeping busy and feel that I am winning the battle.  Visiting day again tomorrow.

I have just lit the woodburner and will now let the pot-belly stove go out.  While I roasted the shins prior to boiling them I also roasted some mushrooms and had them for lunch with creamy polenta.  It was absolutely delicious.

 An odd assortment of flowers from the garden this week.  Alstroemeria, rhododendron, and a solitary anemone (I wanted to spell that anenome which is how I have always pronounced it).  There are still a few roses out in the garden but not good for picking.
 Kath is quite happy whether it is in the sun or, on sunless days before the fire.
 The pot belly stove in its alcove with the shin stock on top and a kettle heating for a cuppa on the trivet on the side.
The log burner that I have just lit.  The piece of bamboo in the blue vase on the left was here as a poker when we arrived three years ago and is still going strong - just the same length.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Mt Parihaka

Today dawned bright and cheerful.  I had arranged to meet the two ladies that pre-walk our Monday walks and walk up Mt Parihaka.

 Mt Parihaka is a volcanic dome rising 241 m to the northeast of Whangarei city centre.  It is about 20 Million years old and part of the harbour Fault which also includes Parakiore near Kamo.

Although it was bright and sunny it was quite cool in the shade but perfect for walking.  It was a nice gentle track to start with until we came to the waterfall where steps had been constructed.  After that it eased off again.  The sign says it is a 40 minute walk and the other ladies had done it in slightly less than that but I timed us at 45 minutes when we still had another couple or so to go to the top.  

I hadn't been to the top even though you can drive to it and the view was magnificient.  My camera didn't do it justice.

                                           A small waterfall on the first part of the track

                                           Three photos of small plants at the side of the track

                                         The view from the top
 The War Memorial.  I understand that at 9 p.m. the floodlights go off and the  red cross is lit.
                                            The track going back down

 In the above photo if you look carefully you can see the stairs going up alongside the waterfall.

I am very pleased with myself.  I did get a bit out of breath but I always do when going uphill but thoroughly enjoyed it.  On the way home I did a large supermarket shop and not much else.