world according to sam

Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. Mark Twain

Category: GADGETS

Green Olive Tapenade 

  

250g Olives

1 Garlic Clove crushed

Juice from 1 lemon

3 Tbsp Capers

6 Anchovies (try Sainsburys in Garlic olive oil for extra flavour)

A glug of  olive oil 

Salt & Pepper to taste

A handful of flat leaf parsley
Traditionally Tapenade was made from black olives in the South of France but this is made from green olives – it’s personal choice! Also I can buy the large jars of Crespo green pitted olives in brine in Waitrose which makes it less costly if you want to make big batches for entertaining.  You can find variations on this recipe that include sun dried tomatoes, basil … It’s a Mediterranean dish served as a dip or spread on little rounds of bread or toast, also delicious cooked in with robust white fish like hake. 

Add all the ingredients to a blender and whizz until you get the desired texture … You will see mine is quite smooth but that’s because my Vitamix has no middle ground – it’s either unchopped or puree!!

I store my tapenade in the fridge in my old Bon Maman jam jars for up to a week     

(Don’t) DIY

Mr H likes to DIY and he does have practical skills but those skills come with a short fuse and an expletive fuelled vocabulary so I am often heard imploring him to ‘find a man that does’ …. And we found just one such service over the Christmas holidays   

Halfords WeFit service is beyond brilliant … They offer fitting services for car  bulbs, batteries and wiper blades. The latter two may be simple but bulbs are fiddly little blighters … For only £6.99 they fitted the bulbs in a jiffy, in fact so speedy were they that we did not even have time to avail ourselves of a new Vanilla scented Little Tree car freshener!

They fitted in the dark, not one navvy inspired utterance from either Mr H or myself and we were away with our Full Beam 

 

Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

Long haul flights when travelling cattle class are tiring and anything that makes the travel experience more tolerable has to be good….. (#firstworldproblems I know and I am not complaining, I had a wonderful time and was very lucky to have gone! I am absolutely not seeking sympathy here!)

Having bought Mr H various Bose items over the years as gifts I thought we were all Bose’d up, with my final purchase 18 months ago of Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones for his business trips. Last years 14+ hour flight had challenged me when seated at the back of the plane with regulation supply BA headphones I had observed Mr H languishing in his seat chuckling away or gripped in the action of his movie while I struggled the entire journey home, barely able to hear any dialogue on the in-flight entertainment – it is a very long way to have to lip read five or six blockbusters.
I am not a slave to technology … When out walking I like to be at one with nature, I don’t need the intrusion of piped music into my brain or on those rare occasions that I venture into the gym I am happy to listen to my decidedly uncool but uplifting  Now That’s What I call Running album on repeat at a low hum, but it’s no biggie if I forget my phone. Besides my auditory orifices are spatially challenged …. Earbuds/earphones of any shape or design simply will not stay in my ears, those peculiar Star Trek style earphones that slot over the ears present such difficulties to me putting them on I become like the child trying to force the square peg into the round hole, tense, frustrated and almost tearful. If I am ever lucky enough to get something to sit in my ear, within thirty minutes my ears are aflame and I want to rip the brain melting contraptions from my head.
So, though I had resisted Mr H’s offer of a Christmas gift to match his headphones, His n Hers Bose ‘phones and the promise of looking slightly ridiculous and a throwback to the 70’s … I politely declined, a new handbag or shoes seemed so MUCH more appealing

But then, knowing we had this epic journey ahead of us, Mr H plunged right in and gifted me with the new headphones for my birthday this year. Boy was I glad he did. These are a GAME CHANGER for long haul travel. No more struggling to hear the dialogue on the film listings, no more constant hum of the engines, not a peep from the unruly child three rows in front … Just super comfy headphones that make you feel as if you have gaffer taped a giant marshmallow to each side of your head.

When you need to remove them for a quick loo trip you realise just how obtrusive engine noise is on such a long trip, that sore inside your head feeling that is a result of constant noise – GONE!  The only downside I can think of is that if you don’t keep one eye on the aisle it’s all too easy to miss that all important question …. “Drink madam?”

(So keep these in mind as a very special gift for that very special someone, they neatly fold into a bag of their own with an adaptor for plane use. )

Literally Literary Lovely! Kindle Cover

  One of the loveliest and most thoughtful gifts I received for my FortyTen birthday was a Kindle cover by KleverCase in ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ design. Those that read my blog regularly will know that this is my all-time favourite book and Atticus Finch is my all-time literary love!

Founder of KleverCase, Philip Bradburn is a true Entrepreneur. After starting out as an apprentice bookbinder in 1976, his Eureka moment came with the advent of e-readers and specifically Amazon’s revolutionary Kindle.  KleverCase was born out of his desire to keep old books alive and to produce high quality products using his experience and traditional skills as a bookbinder. You can read more of the history here.

The company upholds true values for craftsmanship and heritage – and an outstanding customer service department (Mo could not have been more helpful.   Loving your work Mo’!).  Each KleverCase is made at Manor Bindery in the New Forest and each one comes with a personal signature of who made it … in my case Lotty – thanks Lotty!

There are so many great gifts for book lovers available on the KleverCase website, even for those who won’t succumb to the Kindle (or any reading vehicle other than the printed tome!).  Check out their leather bound box files that look like library greats to store receipts, bills etc. The designers obviously have a sense of humour! Impress on the beach with Eintsein’s Theory of Relativity or a Penguin Classic in their iconic orange.  Not Another Trashy Novel brought a smile to my face too.  There are diaries, notebooks, phone covers and other gift ideas for those who love the traditional or literary based gifts.

Available from the KleverCase website, Amazon and NotonTheHighStreet 

%d bloggers like this: