When I Have Time

The day job is squeezing the life out of me. Major project going down, so the whole team are pulling out all the stops for deadline day. Cue early morning starts, late night finishes, and work all through the weekend. Why, I barely have time to squeeze the odd run in.

Luckily, I`ve prioritized running over housework and sleep, so yeah, the training gets done.

I am longing to get my life back, though and, when I am pounding the roads these days, I let my mind meander on what I will do, when I have the time. They fall into two categories: the must-dos and the would-like-to-dos. You`ll have no trouble spotting which is which.

When I have time I will…

…Go on an art gallery crawl in Some City or Anyville, just to soak up the sights and colours and observe my fellow spectators.
…try to figure out how to turn on the TV and then watch whatever I want for a whole twelve hours.( Kids, I hope you`re reading this.)

…download Spotify, because Teen Son says it`s the way to go and my CD collection embarrasses him

…find a partner for all my sports`socks.

…find the black hole in our home where all the odd socks have congregated

…finally assemble my Ikea bookshelves

…mow the lawn

…file my tax returns

…clean the oven
…review my health insurance

…call on my neighbours to let them know I am still in the land of the living

…send my nephew a belated birthday card for his February birthday, enclosing a voucher to ease his grief

…figure out how to set the Virtual Partner on my Garmin so I can finally outrun him

…read all the books that I have stockpiled at my bedside, and on my kindle ap

…book a pedicure and a manicure

…book a mammogram

…catch up on all the films I missed this season

…go to anything in any theatre

…unpack that fancy new digital camera I got and figure out how to use it

…book dinner with some of my gal pals and enjoy a long catch up chat

…break open my art materials and start painting again

…watch a war movie with my sons

…watch a chick flick with my girl

…catch up on all the posts on my WordPress reader and send each one a sincere comment

…unleash two new Ottolenghi recipes and one new dessert recipe on my children

…get back into swimming again

…go watch a marathon

As long as I can, I will always run. It is too fundamental to my well-being to let that go.

Now, what do you dream of doing when you have time?



Very Burnt Very Full Tart

Very Burnt Very Full Tart


Hauled out my Yotam Ottolenghi cookbook, Plenty, on Sunday afternoon. Having a big chunk of time to hand was a huge help with this cookbook. There`s a whole ton of recipes to choose from, and each has a veritable shopping list of ingredients. Luckily, I`d just brought home supplies of squash, sweet potato, aubergine and cheeses. I was ready to roll with Very Full Tart.

You`ll find the recipe in linked in with the recipe title. And, of course, a much better photo and a properly cooked tart!

Should you be tempted to cook it though, just be warned that it`s a little fiddly to make. Lots of chopping, of course. And lots of cooking off with the various ingredients before assembling the lot on shortcrust pastry, for the final bake.

But, by golly, it`s so worth every second of that time. I tried to figure out what exact combination of ingredients appealed to me in this tart. It could be the tartness of the feta cheese with the sweet potato. Or maybe is was the caramelised onion and aubergine. Or maybe it was everything.

Anyway, it was utterly delicious.

Oh, yes, note my version is burnt. Of course. But I ate it, anyway….

Thus sated, I headed out to the beach. More of a walk than a run as I was accompanied by Teen Girl. No, she`s not totally averse to running. It`s just wiser for me to take it at her pace for now. Anyway, it`s nice to get out and not have to work so hard for a change. And I got to enjoy these…



Yes, Brent Geese, at low tide, fattening themselves up on whatever the sea had washed in. They were quite tame. Pretty much determined to chomp on despite our presence, I suspect, as their return trip to Greenland is imminent. Another sign of summer on it`s way here. At last.


And my own fattening up on Ottolenghi`s delights  must have augured well for last night`s run. I managed four miles at a pretty good pace.  Actually started out feeling tired and rubbish after a pretty hectic day but, as often happens, I got wings,(well, sort of!) after two miles, and pelted along.

So, hens can fly then…

And hens can sabotage their own running too, it seems.

The usual rubbish flying through my head, last night.  Because I was tired, and it was unusually late for my run, I`d started off on a double negative. That led to a negative pattern of thinking, on my part, which of course, affected the initial couple of miles. I`ve known for a while now, that the biggest obstacle to my running, is my mindset.  I can be my own worst enemy.

Luckily, the day job had thrown up some quandaries that made for better mind fodder. I lost myself in that lot for a while and distracted myself from my inner saboteur. That got me over the hump and onto faster times and a better run.

More good runs needed. And more good food too.

Let`s see what delights the rest of the week holds.