Lett-uce Pray

Let us pray for a thin February, get on your knees in front of your God (mine is the bathroom scales, apologies for the irreverence but there it is!) and ask what it is you have to do to achieve the required weight loss in 1 month… and no that doesn’t mean moving the zero on the scales!!  Neither does it mean weighing yourself one week fully clothed,     ( with coat, boots and scarves) and the next week popping onto the truth-teller, butt naked, wearing nothing but an optimistic smile. What happened to scales of justice??

If you have tedious, all knowing scales which work out your BMI and your weight, you could try entering your height as 6ft, that allows you a considerable amount more leeway for weight distribution, but as we all know the mantra from the great Bard Shakespeare himself :- To Thine Own Self Be True, thou canst not then be false to any man (or woman!!) In essence, then, we can translate his immortal words for our use as ‘Eating is Cheating’.

Personally I like to eat without conscience for the entire month of December so that weight loss really does start significantly once I hit the green stuff. So don’t be disheartened there are many lovely things we can create with lettuce for example:-

Lettuce Soup

1 large lettuce

1 medium onion

1 medium potato

25gms butter

¾ pt milk

300mls chicken stock

4tablespoons double cream

Salt and freshly ground pepper

 I would not insult you all by writing the method because I’m sure you can work out that for the month of January with your no fat diet, you will end up with lettuce and onion with salt and freshly ground pepper…Yumm! Scrumptious!

 Or we could try cucumber, they are after all 90% water, so don’t forget to suck every last drop. Worldwide in 2010 there were 57,559,836 tonnes of cucumber were grown…Why?? 

Actually I jest I am a great fan of salad and like most food and drink, the taste is definitely enhanced by beautiful presentation.  A fresh strawberry in a glass of fizzy water makes so much difference to a dull drink. Try freezing pieces of fruit in ice cube trays with water, they make delightful ice cubes. The taste of the finest champagne in the world would be seriously compromised if served in a polystyrene cup, and a delightful plate of fresh vegetables, fruit or salad, tastes wonderful if a little extra effort is taken with the finish and delivery.

This concept was exactly what I was trying to achieve with the contents in The Gourmet Trotter Picnic Hamper. The glass ware for your fine wines and the china plates, charcuterie and cheese boards will always make your picnic taste wonderful. A little imagination is all that’s required and there are no rules. It is your picnic to dress up or down, either way.

January is a pretty miserable month, why do we chose to forgo all that is scrumptious and naughty during this bleakest of times, wouldn’t May be easier when we have a ‘spring’ in our step quite literally and an optimism that we are going to have endless long summer  evenings with healthy walks and salad days.

December 31st, 2012 | 0 comments |

Flatties Fight Back

Flatties Fight Back @cocorose

Come on ladies!! Now is the time we reward our poor exhausted feet with a more down to earth treat. We have spent the last two weeks of festivities defying gravity on our 6 inch platforms, tottering around dangerously at cocktail parties, blaming the height of the heel on the precarious wobble, nothing what so ever with the punch, obviously.

We have also been ‘on our feet’ in one way or another for what seems like days with feast preparations.  We are well aware that ladies simply don’t sit down at this time of year, scurrying from kitchen to table, presenting culinary delights to teenagers with hollow legs and husbands with well stretched girths. No-one seems to have a ‘Full’ Sign in place which can’t be removed by a well-earned nap and the whole filling process starts again

My feet have been killing me and I have been lucky enough to receive some beautiful perfume products to anoint my tired toes and uber comfy slippers. But what happens when we have to gear up for the next inevitable party, and the thought of the pain in the Strutties is really just too great, or perhaps after an hour or so becomes more than one can bare.

Cue Cocorose, the suppliers of the most beautiful ballet pump which puts a whole new meaning into ‘kicking up your heels.’ I for one could dance the night away with these instead of swaying gingerly in my heels. If some-one knows the secret to strutting your stuff in killer heels then let me know, but in the meantime I have got a pair of beautiful of Mia ballet shoes which will add elegance and comfort to my LBD, for New Year’s Eve.  They are foldable and have the sweetest bow detail on an almond shaped toe. They have a leather sole so will survive the odd puddle on the walk to the taxi, and there have been a few of those around this holiday!! They also have cushioned heels and padded foot beds, basically a luxury foot massage in a shoe!!!! Or  ‘Foot Massage To Go!’

And a little bird told me there is the most beautiful Spring Collection coming mid Jan. I have my beady little eye on these little treasures based on Liberty Art Fabrics. If you want to be elegant but supremely comfortable visit




December 30th, 2012 | 0 comments |

Ode To Adipose

An Ode To Adipose.

Four days left of feasting and gluttony, just four more days til the guilt of the width of the waist line and the abused shards of liver fragments left floating in a heap in your abdomen, pierce you conscience. Just four more days til the time comes for the New Year Resolutions or should I say Revolutions. Time for the self-inflicted punishment to begin, the masochistic purge of toxins accumulated over the jollities of excess good will and above all the ‘Christmas Spirit’ to be expelled from your poor rotund battered body.

If like me you don’t drink and don’t smoke and currently have no significant other,  then your sins may be slightly less mountainous, but sadly for me I seem to have over indulged spectacularly on the eating front with a heavy dose of Poor me, I don’t drink I don’t smoke, I don’t *** so why shouldn’t I stuff myself stupid. Moment on lips, life time on hips, springs to mind, add to that bum, legs, stomach, arms and face and you have it. ‘Adipose Aboundeth’ (sounds like the title of a new Carol)

For those of you not in the medical know, Adipose is the kinder more mysterious and therefore more alluring name for FAT, which, unlike other three letter words such as ‘OIL’  does not conjure up images of wealth and riches beyond imaginings. Obese is even worse, I shudder at the very thought of it.

When my children were little and were frightened of something, I used to suggest they gave it a name. The spider in the bath became known as Sydney and the worm in your boot became Walter. So in order to be less fearful about this atrocious girth expansion, my Belly has become known as BASIL. I have written the following little gem for my children.  It just goes to show how my theory of befriending the enemy makes him less scary.  Basil became the central focus as all things cuddly and safe, and is love and adored by all.


My Dearest Children

It is with deep sadness that I write to you all to inform you of the imminent demise of Basil.

Basil, as you know, Children, has been a constant source of nourishment and comfort for me for many years.  He has served us all well including the safe harbour for you precious babes as pre infants during my numerous pregnancies.  In latter years he has taken on the coveted role of chief waist band button launcher, a difficult and unpopular position but one of great amusement to others.  But, frankly my dears, he has now exceeded his role and taken on inflated proportions, his ego knows no bounds. He has been taken before a juryof 12, fair and true, trousers and skirts and they have found him guilty of over indulgence and gluttony, punishable by a slow death of starvation until every last remaining remnant of chocolate passes from his being.

Grandma is kindly sharing her many years of experience of Basil shedding and has passed on a Footballers Diet which seems to mainly consist of half a grapefruit and a piece of dry toast at rather infrequent intervals, that is to say, three times per day, punctuated by fizzy water which I detest and coffee with no milk or sugar! Personally, I doubt whether any footballers actually use this diet, do they not have sufficient cash to employ people to lose weight for them! So I shall rename this sad torture as, Death by Diet.

As I so frequently mention, this life is supposed to be about the journey, not the destination, so shall I be proud on the day I lay in my final box? There will be with no air of fag breath, booze breath and my shroud will be a perfect size 10. Meanwhile, on the journey and in preparation for this great day I shall have to suffer the indignity of slowly fading away, sucking grapefruits.

I have to say that, as yet, I have not started this diet.  I intend to shop for it this afternoon.  Imagine my joy, then, if, on the arrival at Tescos I should come across the pink grapefruits with a little notice saying, ‘Buy one get one Free’……Deep joy indeed!

And so my angels, I shall leave you now, a chubby warm, great baker of cakes and when I see you all again I shall be a shadow, a mere whisper of my glorious self, and if, my dears I should overdo it as I am want to do and even a whisper of me cannot be found, just remember I loved you all

Fondest love, Mama. x


December 28th, 2012 | 0 comments |

The Christmas Pecking Order

It’s not who you are or what you are; it’s which chair you have at the family Christmas dinner, that really tells it how it is!

Your social position is predetermined and reconfirmed year after year by the great divide from antique Louis carver down to picnic chair with the ‘nippy’ spring.

The dilemma for the hostess is enormous and fraught with potential domestic faux pas, basically we will all know what she thinks of us by her chair choice, even if it ends with an ‘I’m sorry about the chair, sweetie, Knew you’d understand….’ Did she know how much these 5 denier Prada stockings cost!!!! 

Never, ever are you allowed to sit where you like, positioning at this very traditional egg nogg feast is all important.

There are, of course, certain expectations amongst the family, for example, the married sons, we don’t need to impress.  They have already had their hand knitted xmas jumper, are a bit squiffy by now but we must be mindful that they are still dominant males with incomes and worthy of a certain level of respect.  They can have the ordinary dining chairs.  Father, of course, non debatable, has his throne and always shall.  As traditional as plum pudding.

You can usually recognize if you’re expected to help, you will probably be given some perching device, often something with wheels such as the office chair, can reverse easily out of a tight spot when great aunt needs the bread sauce passing and it has no arms to hinder plate collection.

What about the bread sauce consuming maiden great aunt, the one with hairs on her chinny chin-chin with a girth spectacular enough to require ‘Caution- Wide load’ stickers. A truly remarkable veteran battle axe but, sadly, prone to stress incontinence, particularly after the ubiquitous large schooner of sweet sherry.  Do you risk the upholstery on the Louis XIV carver? The legs, at least will hold the massive weight whilst the floral garden chair would buckle in an instant!  The director’s chair is going to be far too low and the piano stool will not hold her in at the sides.  She has been known to topple sideways whilst dozing through the Queen’s Speech.  Should (horror of horrors) father be approached re donating his chair for one year, and one year only, to this worthy cause. It is after all Christmas Day, the day for family discussions.  It’s all very PC.  Personally, I would suggest the heavy metal chair from the garden with the dog’s cushion wrapped in a Laura Ashley rose embellished drying up cloth as befits this fine posterior. 

I’m not unwise enough to risk any reprisals or dare venture onto such dangerous ground as the daughter in law’s chair… I suppose it rather depends on whether she has managed to produce any male heirs.  The blood line must be continued at any cost, where would we be without our Sidebottoms pronounced (Siddybutem) or our Smiths (pronounced Smythes) and that doesn’t mean combining the new wife’s surname with the family name for the children, God forbid!! What a ghastly transatlantic invention that has become!

And what of Mum, that wonderful long suffering invention of tolerance and love, that all important chef without whom it would all be a boil-in-the-bag disaster.  Good old chief MUM!!! Hours and hours she’s toiled and do you know what she gives herself….The kitchen steps with a wobbly leg!  I can assure you, once sat on these steps with paper hat in situ, I know one Mum who will not enter the kitchen again for the rest of the day!

December 23rd, 2012 | 0 comments |