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Leek and pumpkin barley risotto

I was intending to make this for both the little man and I tonight for dinner but took longer than the recipe said so the little man had a pre packaged pasta – bad mummy!

A different take on risotto and I must admit I LOVE pearl barley so found it quite tasty.

I would definitely make it again and maybe add some new ingredients to it as well. Hope if you make it you enjoy it too. I will be serving up the leftovers to the little man tomorrow night!!

500g butternut pumpkin peeled, seeded and diced
2 Tbsp oil
1 leek trimmed, rinsed and sliced
2 rashes of bacon trimmed and chopped
1 clove garlic crushed
200g button mushrooms sliced or halved (depends on your fancy)
1.5 cups pearl barley
5 cups veggie stock (I only had chicken)
1/3 cup chopped parsley

Preheat oven 200C

In baking dish toss pumpkin in half the oil, season and bake for 20-25 minutes until tender.

Heat remaining oil in large heavy based saucepan, sautée leek, bacon and garlic 2-3 minutes until leek is tender. Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes stirring until golden.

Stir in barley to coat in oil. Pour in stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20-25 minutes.

Remove lid and simmer a further 10-15 minutes (I found closer to 20+ minutes), until barley is tender and liquid is completely absorbed. Season to taste.

Stir through pumpkin, sprinkle the parsley on top.

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Why oh why

Last Friday night my little man’s dad came to get him as per usual, I gave the little man a hug & kiss and said have a great night and day.  About 10 minutes later there was a knock at the door; my first thought was ‘bloody marketers’ but low and behold it was my little man with his dad.  His dad said “he doesn’t want to be with me so I’ll see him next week.”  I must have looked dumbstruck as when we were together he always forced his children to see him on his weekends.  I asked the little man if he was ok and why he didn’t want to go to dads that night.  He said “the other kids are there and don’t want to go.”  He’s three so I thought ok extra time for me on the weekend! Selfish I know but I’ll take all the time I can.

Yesterday I thought I’d do the right thing and ask the ex what happened in the car so we could work on it together.  Why oh why did I do that as I received an essay back saying everything I was doing wrong.  I will give you a highlight from each paragraph.
  • My farewell is a song and dance and clingy with hugs and kisses whilst his is quick and clean.
  • Apparently it has happened before (never mentioned to me) and he didn’t want to deal with it again. I give to many kisses which makes him not want to leave me as I’ll be utterly miserable without him.
  • Rare for me say goodbye once and then move away, apparently I hover and wave to the little man.
  • The little man is always happy to see me at pick ups and not in tears (why this is my fault not sure).
  • The ex has trouble engaging the little man in conversation, thinks his sullen & withdrawn.  Ignores his new wife and the other five kids, again how is this my fault?
  • I need to curtail my farewells reigning in my goodbyes so that the little man’s head is in the “right” space and to enforce how good a time he’ll have at his dads!
  • Not allowed to empty the letterbox on the exes time as gives mixed messages to the little man??? A simple goodbye at the door and no hover in the future.
  • Improve his self confidence so he doesn’t cling to legs when he goes to school (two years away), and that separation is not a bad thing.
  • The ex has an intolerance to his  bad manners because he says ‘I want’ instead of ‘may I please’.
  • Appreciate my consideration on these points.
Why oh why did I ask the question????  I’d like to say that my little man is quite fine saying goodbye to me at daycare & kinder as well as any other time I might leave him.  His manners are bloody good for a three year old and I’m sorry a mother is allowed to hug and kiss her child at goodbye and I don’t hover at all I just show affection to my son.  Yes I miss him when he’s not with me and I tell him this occasionally, he now says ‘I miss you mum’.  I don’t believe this is bad or detrimental to his development or impacts on him wanting to go to his dads house.  As for ignoring your wife and kids who can blame him when there are five other kids there and by the sounds of it he is left to his own devices most of the time or dragged to their sporting events.
I could rant all night but won’t.  We went out for dinner tonight to Pinocchio’s pizza and they had drawings around the restaurant.  I hope my exes lies make his nose grow and to stop blaming me because he can’t relate/deal with his son whilst in his care.

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Am I losing freindships because I am single?

I know that sounds stupid but sometimes I feel like it is true.

As we get older and life takes over, especially children, do we just naturally drift apart or is it something else? In my case being a single mum…..

I have felt left out on the odd occasion throughout the year(s) and maybe I am been precious (that was my nanna’s nickname for me after all) and over sensitive but there is a little piece of me that falls off when I hear about dinners/catch ups after the fact and wonder why I wasn’t invited.  Do they think that because I am single I am going to hit on their husband or that I make their table an odd number!  Makes you feel so special when you hear the last excuse in particular!!!  I would never hit on a friend’s husband even if they were all that was left on the planet; it is not in my conscious to do such a thing.

Maybe I am just having a whinge because I can as I know none of them subscribe to my blog! (I don’t have many followers at all really)

Does being single make it hard for married women to be friends with and or socialise with?  I hope not as I am still the same person I was before I just don’t have a partner anymore and have a munchkin instead.  Deep down I wonder how they would feel if I stopped inviting them to things that we do.  Would they fell hurt or would they brush it off?  I have many married and a few still single friends and try to mix up the events so that it is never one nor the other.

Why does life have to get so complicated or why do we have to make it more complicated than it actually is.

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Turning the Corner

Slowly slowly I am trying to turn the corner in my life, as per the picture to the left. The first thing I did was make my blog page brighter instead of the dark ‘dusk’ theme that I had. What was the next step that I am not sure but maybe it will be about talking about other things in my life rather than my mundane life as it is at present?

I have lots to look forward to this week as it is my baby’s 2nd birthday on Wednesday and he even choose his birthday card, it was a tossup between a fire truck with the number 2 on it or a train card and all he could say was ‘truck truck’ so I decided to go with that one for him. He is getting a 3 story high car garage as well as some cloths and mini Cooper and a DVD of Roary the Racing Car. As you may be able to tell he is very much a “boy’s boy” at this stage of his life, what will happen in the future is anyone’s guess and who really cares!? As well as that we are going to go to have a small family party on Sunday and I have to make his birthday cake, again it was a tossup between the fire engine or a clock and have decided on the clock as I think he will enjoy the fire engine more next year.

I also have a couple of previous work friends coming over for dinner on Friday night which will be great; I just have to decide what I am going to cook for all of us! Any suggestions will be warmly received. It will be fantastic to have a good old gossip session about our lives and hear what is going on in other people’s lives and not just my own little world.

As the days warm up and the sun comes out I hope my outlook on life with change as well and that corner of the page will become bigger and bigger until the next page appears for me to move on to.