2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Left Handed · Rural · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen | Samphire

Photo by Klaus Nielsen on Pexels.com

For the first time last month, I tried samphire. I have seen them in supermarkets but wasn’t brave enough to experiment with them. I used to be very adventurous with food in my younger days but these days I prefer to play it safe. Maybe it’s because the Mhinisteir doesn’t like to experiment with new dishes.

The samphire duly arrived with my other groceries from Tesco. The very young delivery driver got quite excited when he saw the samphire. He started giving me advise on how to cook them, not that I asked!!! Anyway, he told me to steam and serve it with a good piece of fillet steak. I already had other plans. I was going to steam it and incorporate it in my pasta with Scottish smoked salmon and that was what I did. It tasted heavenly. By the way, the Mhinisteir had something else to eat!

The delivery driver told me to add rock salt but I didn’t as I read somewhere that samphire is salty.

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Eco · England · Left Handed · Observations · Rural · Summer · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

Where are all the refills?

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Am I the only one to notice that most UK supermarkets love getting on their moral high horses when it comes to the environment?

Supermarkets like Tesco no longer bring our orders in bags. Instead, they are scattered in a plastic crate and it is up to me to scramble like crazy while the delivery driver just stands there and watches!

The only supermarket to continue bringing our groceries in bags is Ocado and so a big well done to them. Again they appear to be the only one who happen to sell refills for Method and ECover.

I am quite sure that half the products that we buy and use can be refilled so why are the manufacturers not producing them and even if they did why are supermarkets like Tesco not stocking them???

I am not an eco warrior but I do care about the environment. When I lived in the Far East in the late 80s, they had already started selling refill packs for coffee, washing up liquid, detergent etc. Why are we in the western world so slow to move on to refill packs? Most importantly what gives us the right to lecture other countries about the environment??

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Iron · Left Handed · Ocado · Rural · Summer · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

Supermarket Substitute

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Since my last two blog posts have been on the “heavy” side, I thought I will write about something as mundane as my weekly shopping!

I had a bit of a senior moment yesterday when I couldn’t remember where I had left the newly purchased can of ironing starch.

Unfortunately, I still belong to what I assume will be a semi extinct group of people who still use starch to iron. I use it primarily for the Mhinisteir’s clerical shirts androbes.

I was quite sure that it had come with my Tesco delivery. By the way, I have had to reluctantly continue using Tesco on top of Ocado for my weekly shopping as there are just some things that I can’t get from Ocado like the ironing starch.

For a split second, I did wonder whether the can of ironing starch got “lost” like my bag of salad leaves!!!!!

The Mhinisteir suggested I look at the receipt and so I did. Phew! what a relief!!! The can of ironing starch was on the list but it had been substituted with a bottle of Tesco Fabric Freshener!!!! Yes, it was then that I remembered refusing it as it was a rubbish substitute. The substitute that takes the biscuit is when once I had ordered chocolate eclairs and received Chinese spring rolls instead!!!!

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Eco · England · Left Handed · Ocado · Rural · Spring · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

First Ocado Order

Photo by Matheus Cenali on Pexels.com

Last week, we had our first complimentary Ocado delivery to the Vicarage. I am super pleased! Unfortunately, I was not able to experience the wonderful service first hand as I was forced to spend the day in bed but thankfully the Mhinisteir was available to receive the order.

I am all for recycling but I am not an eco warrior. I have an invisible disability which means that to have my shopping packed in bags is a very big help as the Mhinisteir is not always available to receive the shopping. Tesco has been very disappointing on this matter. They have changed their bags policy yet again. I have blogged about my experience here and here. Ocado collect the used bags and apparently you get a refund for bags returned.

Ocado is more expensive than Tesco but it is worth paying a wee bit more as I have more choice. Shopping with Ocado has also exposed Tesco’s hypocrisy on their care for the environment policy. I usually buy Method antibacterial spray and Ecover washing up liquid. I didn’t know that they are meant to be refilled until I started shopping with Ocado. Ocado sells refill bottles for both items but I have never come across them in Tesco!

Sadly, I have not been able to buy flowers from Ocado but it is a small price to pay. All I can hope now is for Ocado to continue with this excellent service.

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · England · Faith · Flowers · God · Left Handed · Multi Parish Benefice · Parish Church · Parish Life · Parishioners · Rural · Spring · Tesco · Vicarage · Village

Bouquets & Brickbats

This is my first blog post since the start of Spring 2021! I continue to feel a lot more tired than usual so my poor blog has been neglected for the last fortnight.

The Mhinisteir is crazy busy (like the character’s boyfriend in The Little Bakery). I still don’t think it is fair or right to ask clergy to shoulder so much of burden disguised as multi parish benefice. It is not one or two other parishes. You almost need a third pair of hands to count the number of parishes. Everyday someone or something is kicking off so a bit like whack a mole! The Mhinisteir Is obviously very happy with his work, though tired. However, I am feeling his pressure. EVERYTHING has to revolve around his tight schedule which can be quite difficult.

Bouquets

I had a very pleasant Tesco delivery on Tuesday. Unusually, the young delivery man was very attentive. He took the effort to inform me of substitutes and even helped me with the shopping. Later on, I realised that there was an extra bunch of daffodils in the bag!!!!! What a lovely surprise!

Brickbats

I have always ordered my repeat prescription online and this week when I tried to do the same, I was unsuccessful. I was able to access my records alright but there was no option for me to choose the correct prescription which was odd. I was very reluctant to ring the surgery but I had no choice.

I rang and explained my difficulty. The receptionist insisted on transferring me to the pharmacy. I could not understand why. She said that they in the surgery don’t know anything about the online system and that she will have to transfer me to the pharmacy. I finally had to ask if the pharmacy were in charge of the online system to which she answered no. So why on earth transfer me to the pharmacy???????? I just want my online account to work. Finally she said she could change my password but I had to come to the surgery. There was nothing wrong with my password!!!! Quite frankly changing the password wasn’t going to solve the problem. By this time, I was getting slightly irritated but I had to “smile” and be polite for they ALL know that I am the Vicar’s wife!

Anyway, I just thanked her and rung off!

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Doctor · England · Iron · Left Handed · Parish Church · Parish Life · Parishioners · Rural · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage · Winter

Mouldy Vegetables & Censors 2021 among other things.

I decided to have a lazy day yesterday so spent most of my time in the spare bedroom fully dressed. I was tired and had a few things on my mind that were weighing me down. The weather too was grey.

Anyway, my to do list is very long so couldn’t afford a lazy day today. I had to be dressed and ready for the Tesco delivery. As usual, the delivery arrived 20 minutes earlier which was absolutely fine. Unfortunately, I ended up with 2 packs of mouldy vegetables! I do get a little harassed when I deal with supermarket deliveries. It is a pity that the delivery person just stands there and does nothing. They don’t even bother telling you about the substitutes etc. I don’t know how you can put the shopping away and check for substitutes all at the same time!

I only noticed the mouldy vegetables after the deliveryman had left so I had to email Tesco but had to provide images of the mouldy vegetables. It was only then did I realise that I didn’t know how to use the camera on my MacBook! It took me 5 minutes to figure out the camera and another 5 to take the necessary photos so in total in took me half an hour to email Tesco to get a refund. I suppose this is to be expected when shopping online. The good news is I got my refund within the hour!

After lunch, I worked on Census 2021. I was expecting to receive a paper version so was disappointed when I realised that we had to do it online. Since the pandemic, the Mhinisteir is super busy with work. I really don’t know how one man can be asked to be in charge of so many parishes and on top of his usual workload, he is doing a handful of funerals every single week!!!!! The Mhinisteir tells me that he loves his job but I am not happy with his workload. I digress…..It took me about 15 minutes to complete Censors 2021 electronically. It was fairly straightforward but time consuming.

After Census 2021, I phoned the Surgery, hoping to get a telephone appointment with the doctor at some point during the week. According to the voice message, the surgery is not available to the public on Tuesday afternoons. Seriously???

I slowly worked through the mountain of ironing that needed to be done. I must have been ironing like a maniac for there is now a large hole in my new iron board cover!

All in all, it has been a productive day.

2020 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Christmas · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · England · God · Left Handed · Rural · Scotland · Sleep · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

Crabbit!

Crabbit

That’s how my week has been so far! I have been feeling really tired and overwhelmed. The lack of a good night’s sleep is the biggest contributing factor. Furthermore, My study desk is cluttered with cards, papers, bills etc that either need filing or attending to. A cluttered desk is a cluttered mind!!! This is so true as I have been struggling to update my blog this week.

Things haven’t been going my way either. The Mhinisteir had to remind me that it is not my way that matters but God’s ways. Very true!

Despite being married to a Vicar, Christmas is a very low key affair in our household. Our decorations consist of a wreath , a table top Christmas tree and plenty of poinsettias.

Until today, I have been unable to source fresh poinsettias! Most places have also run out of artificial poinsettia pots!!! For a change, i thought I will put Christmas garlands on the banister and fireplace. Guess what? They have run out of Christmas garlands too! I ordered some red baubles from Tesco but again it was a no show!

Thankfully, I am beginning to feel a wee bit better today. Long may it last!

2020 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Cleaner · Clergy Wife · Coronavirus · England · Face Masks · Faith · Funeral · God · Hairdresser · Left Handed · Multi Parish Benefice · Parish Church · Parish Life · Rural · Sabbath Day · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

Lockdown 2.0

  • On Saturday just before 3pm, we heard that the Prime Minister was going to have a press conference at 5pm. Turned on the radio but no press conference. There was no news as to what time the actual press conference was going to be. I gave up and went to have an early dinner. In the Radio news at 7pm, it was reported that the Prime Minister has announced a second National Lockdown to commence on Thursday. Rumour is that one of the reasons for the confusion with the press conference timing was because of the BBC and Strictly come dancing.
  • There will be no Church services on Sundays but funeral services are permitted inside the Church. On top of that Foodbanks, AA meetings etc will be able to take place inside the Church. The people who came up with these rules obviously don’t know the primary function of the Church. Thankfully the head of the Roman Catholic church voiced his objections. Not sure why it took ABC so long to object!

  • Why is there such a demand for loo rolls? As usual, I got my Tesco delivery shortly after I started typing this. No loo rolls in sight. Don’t need them (yet!).

  • Rumour is that the lockdown will continue into the New Year. I wish people will understand how damaging this Virus can be.

  • For me, life before lockdown is not very different to life in lockdown. However, I will miss going to Church, my hairdresser and the cleaner.

2020 · Anglican · Blogging · Chocolate · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage

An Afternoon of Tidying up & Dairy Free Chocolates

I have just Marie Kondo(ed) my study. I gathered about 2 bags of rubbish. They were mainly boxes that I had “saved” to use for my craft work but as it is always the case they ended up being clutter.

As a reward for all my hardwork, I treated myself to 4 small squares of NOMO Dairy Free Hazelnut Chocolate. I am not a chocoholic but I do like the occasional treat.

I came across NOMO Chocolates last week when I was online doing my grocery shopping and so added a bar to my shopping basket.

I would say that they are the best Dairy Free chocolates that I have tried so far. I would like to think that it tastes like Ferraro Rocher! Did you know that it does not contain nuts? I love Hazelnuts and I was convinced that it contained hazelnuts!!!!!

NB: I am not paid to endorse NOMO chocolates.

2020 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Faith · Food · Left Handed · Rural · Tesco · Vicarage

The Special Bag of Petits Pois

Yesterday, I received my usual fortnightly Tesco delivery.

The Mhinisteir wasn’t available to help me but I was confident that because I had requested and paid for shopping bags, I would be able to somehow manage – at least be able to temporarily dump the shopping bags on the floor.

However, when the delivery arrived, things didn’t go as I had planned.

According to Tesco, I had ordered a total of 31 items. Strangely, 30 of the items were all cramped in the one tray liner !!!. For those who don’t know what tray liners are, they resemble huge plastic bags but are without handles!

How was I supposed to yank a huge bag containing 30 items from the plastic crate????? The bag also contained glass bottles. I somehow managed but paid the price for it later.

Now to the interesting bit…… The 31st item, much to the amusement of the delivery driver, was in a tray liner all by itself. As you can probably guess, that said item was a small bag of Bird’s Eye Petits Pois weighing a mere 545g!!!!

Thanks to moments like these that I am never short of things to write about!!!!