Campfire Stories


Top 20 family games and how to play them

in no particular order and according to us.

I am a game fanatic, love, love, love to play family games.  I will pull in anyone who stands around long enough at a gathering, to play whatever game I am obsessed with at the time. We have 6 shelves of games,  more in another room, which I played with the children when they were young, just waiting, I will play them again. My husband and daughter mostly groan, roll their eyes and move into another room when they see me heading to the boxes of entertainment, but my son enjoys the cut and thrust of a good strategy game as much as I do.  We often play, just the two of us, but now he groans and rolls his eyes because he can beat me at almost everything and it is boring to win at everything.

I could have written about my top 100 family games, to compile a list of only 20 has been enormously difficult for me.  In the end, the games I have chosen are the ones that we play again and again.  I have tried to include a bit of everything. Looking at them on the table in front of me, most of them share the same traits. (spoiler alert I couldn’t do it, there are 21 here).

  1. They are easy to learn
  2. Quick to play
  3. Luck is just as important as strategy
  4. They make us laugh
  5. I do not win at any of them!!

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The Green Folder


What’s a mung bean? It is three things

A quick and simple guide to cooking and eating mung beans – 4 fabulous dishes

P1130043 (2).JPGHigh in vitamins and minerals, especially iron, calcium, vitamin A, B1, B2 and C, these small green dried beans have a pale yellow inside.  You might not have seen them in this form, but I bet you have seen and probably eaten them as bean sprouts. That’s how they are most commonly used.  Buy them non heat treated and watch them grow!!  Once sprouted, mung beans punch above their weight increasing the amount of Vitamin A by 300% and a staggering increase of up to 600% for their vitamin C value.  Because their starches are converted to simple sugars during the sprouting process, they are easy to digest.  When mung beans are hulled and split they are called mung dal.  Get to know them, in all their forms.mung beans

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The Red Folder


Quick and easy slices, most requested recipes

Lemon – Chocolate – Caramel – Lemon – Chocolate – Caramel – Lemon – Chocolate 

After the  raspberry chocolate cheesecake brownie these are the next three most requested slice recipes.  I have finally found time to leave them in this space.  The names are what they have become in our family for various reasons.  Call them what you want but you must make them.  My favorite is the lemon so that is where I will start.

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Lemon Hearts
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Orange Hob Knob
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Fred cake

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Advice Safe


Weeds are just things in the wrong place

Here are a few I found out gardening today.   I have plenty and am happy to share, so I have made a catalogue for your convenience.  A one time special offer. Disclaimer – I am not an expert- reasonable terms.  You just have to help me move them from their current position.


Common daisy

Admired for its delicate white petals and popular with children, Bellis perennis is a very useful ground cover perennial. Excellent for dry, sunny areas with poor soil. They bloom profusely in the early summer and will dominate your lawn, and open up any cracks in your paving. Makes beautiful chains. Continue reading “Advice Safe”

The Green Folder


Buckwheat a heavyweight in nutrition

A quick and simple guide to cooking and eating buckwheat, a gluten free food

Buckwheat is a fruit seed – related to rhubarb and sorrel and nothing to do with wheat, good news for all those trying to avoid the stuff. I have seen pictures of buckwheat crops which look like a field full of white flowering weeds. The tiny seeds contain higher levels of zinc, copper, and manganese than other cereal grain. Buckwheat also provides a very high level of  protein which is well-balanced and rich in lysine (think cold sore defense).  Why then, is Buckwheat not carried on our shoulders as a food superhero? Well. there is some evidence that humans find it hard to digest the protein, so absorption is low – pre-soaking before using, makes all grains more digestible. While this makes it a less than ideal source of protein for growing children or anyone with digestive tract issues, for most of us it is a useful food to include in our diets and a must for vegetarians and those that are Gluten free.

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I allow buckwheat polenta to cool and eat as a sort of pate with warn wholemeal toast

Buckwheat’s most common forms are,  hulled groats, which can be cooked like rice. Ground  buckwheat flour, most famously used in Japanese soba noodle and french blinis and toasted groats, which does not take as long to cook. The hulls can be used as  stuffing in hypo-allergenic pillows, heating pads, and other homeopathic applications.  Interesting but how can we eat it.  Here’s how. Continue reading “The Green Folder”

Campfire Stories


Surprisingly the letter d ran away

I was messing around on the beach the other day, the sun was blowing warm kisses and I had nothing much else to do. The dog took advantage and ran around begging for food and stole other dog’s balls, while I paid no attention and dallied. People have begun to think of summer,  I stood and watched a lone stand up paddle boarder underline the place where sea meets sky. I squinted and took a picture with my phone unsure if I had captured the moment.  It didn’t really matter I had seen it, so it was captured in a way.  I love the way nature and man collide on the beach, the constant struggle by both to win amuses me.  People have built houses on the cliffs here, I assume they look out onto the most beautiful view, they have to pay a toll to the sea, corrosion and salt. I sat on a rock and watched builders abseiling with a belt full of tools hanging above signs that said warning falling rocks.  I read the sign again lazily and got up quickly remembering that the rocks can ricochet, turning themselves into bullets capable of hitting me as I sat reading the warning.

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