It is seriously disappointing that after having worked so hard recently to pull myself out of the doldrums, I find myself here once more with a fit of Advanced Mugwump. My knitting lies disregarded and I could scarce galvanise myself into producing lunch, which was only a simple reheating job.

I guess it is difficult to avoid a slump here, in the darkest week of the year and after all the lousy weather that we have had but it is unfortunate that the gloom has struck just now.

Mr L has his birthday tomorrow. He finishes work this evening until some time in the New Year. Although we don’t do Christmas we shall have a fine time anyway – we always do. Tomorrow we kick off with Birthday Dinner. The fish van comes tomorrow and I have placed an order for Langoustine Tails, should they have any. Hopefully that is the starter taken care of. If tails cannot be had, we shall have Scallops instead. Either dish will be served very simply – Marie Rose for the tails or a lime/chilli dressing for the scallops.

The dish that Mr L had requested for main course has been cancelled as the only driver for going to town yesterday was to procure some flavoursome ripe tomatoes for the Barley Bake. Being mugwumpish and unwilling to spend a day in town simply for half a kilo of toms, we arbitrated and now plan to have steak. Dessert will be Champagne Jelly – sans Champagne. Mr L makes this himself and uses Prosecco for economy. The recipe comes from Yotam Ottolenghi, who recommends Cardamom Shortbread alongside. We find this too substantial and this year I had planned to make some Cardamom flavoured Pistachio Macarons to replace the butter-laden biscuits.

This is where the Mugwumps become both evident and problematic. It is three in the afternoon, it is getting dark and I still have to find the get up and go in order to whip a few egg whites. I fear the Macarons will not happen. This is a great shame, I was really looking forward to eating them!

There may be cheese to finish. Cheese was ordered a few weeks ago but did not appear in the postal delivery today. All fingers are crossed for tomorrow.

Wines have been selected today – the white is now in the fridge and the red is on the side in the kitchen to warm up. The sherry and the port have been dusted off and I even have Tia Maria in case a need for liqueurs should become apparent – the Tia Maria came free, courtesy of the local shop’s Loyalty Car points yesterday.

We may possibly be over-dining but there will be a few days of simple veggie fare and soups to compensate before we get to our Wedding Anniversary on New Year’s Eve and then over-indulge once more.

No knitting done today, as already mentioned, but I did  do a few rows yesterday at Spinning when I was unable to spin due to a faulty wheel – though that was the sum total of knitting for this week. Last night we (re)watched Chocolat. I didn’t point out, when Mr L selected the film, that I had watched it very recently on Netflix, having asked him if we should watch it together and he declined. I didn’t mind watching it again so soon. Well, you know, Johnny Depp… ponytail… sigh Who could possibly over-dine on that!

Hopefully a few beach walks over the holidays will see me buck up. If that doesn’t work, there’s always the treasure hunting to cheer my spirits.

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