Category Archives: Saturday Snippets

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup…10th January-16th January 2021…Recipes, Whimsy, Music and Lifestyle Changes…


Welcome to this week’s edition of my weekly roundup of posts…Especially for you just in case you missed a few posts during this last week…It is a cloudy and still morning here…a tad warmer just by a whisper and I am contemplating my day while I sip my Oolong Tea…

Well, the New Year has definitely started…on that, I decline to comment I’ll leave that to everyone else…This is a stress-free zone for today at least…

My word for this year is Improv… Why?

The year ahead will be challenging, unrehearsed, unscripted… we may have to think on our feet and be spontaneous at times thus improvising will definitely be on the agenda…for me a perfect word…What’s your word(s) for the year?

Meatless Monday’s…

Here I am dipping my toes into making and introducing more plant-based meals to my family…although they are willing participants they will try anything once they are also my harshest critics…Wish me luck…smile…

Thank you, Darlene, for the recipe I will be testing it this week…tomorrow I am going be getting all my different lentils out of my store cupboard…in the meantime enjoy my first Meatless Mondays…

Meatless Mondays

We are all... well I am …looking to eat more healthily after the cumulative effects of the lockdowns and the festive season…

Eat Smart! Eat Healthily…Breakfasts…

This week I have also been participating in the Travel Challenge…

Suffice to say I will not be linking to all those posts today…But if you would love to join in or just view vicariously then please do…

 Sharon at the awesome Gum trees and Galaxies blog, nominated me to participate in the Travel picture challenge. I mean do I have travel pictures…haha… Gum trees and galaxies blogs about travel, adventure, books, life and stuff especially if your passion is all of those plus the environment it then makes this blog a must-read who knows what little gems you may find…

The challenge is about visual images so we need to post a favourite travel picture for 10 days without explanation and nominate someone else to participate.

Actually, I am finding it hard to decide who to nominate for these final two but if you would like to be nominated leave me a comment and I will send the next one your way. xx

The Culinary Alphabet with a little twist…Q (bbQ) and R (caviaR)

We are back to one of my challenges which I hope you are enjoying ...I have thought about how I am going to follow these two series and have come up with the idea of maybe still sticking with the Alphabet theme and picking 3 A’s, B’s etc in relation to the environment and climate change, of course, some letters have nothing Q being one of them… an example being for A …Air Pollution, Air Quality and Algae Blooms…most of the words I know and have heard of and maybe know something about I just thought I could expand on that…I’ll leave you with that thought?

Now back to Wednesday and my Culinary Alphabet for this week…Enjoy!

Thursday...I shared one of Sally’s posts…Sally blogs over at Smorgasbord Magazine and is a qualified and experienced, nutritionist whose advice I value greatly…I trust her…

I’m sure many of us look in the mirror and don’t always like/recognise who we see…I hardly guild the lily any more preferring to go au natural…but I do want to keep my smoothish skin without resorting to botox…Sally can help so head over and have a read…

Healthy Eating Lunches… whether you are at home or at work or just on the go…there is something for everyone …Enjoy!

Going to work on an egg used to be tagline in the UK  back in the ’50s. and 60’s…

Today eggs are still a valuable source of nutrients please head over to Sally’s to see why we should still go to work on an egg…

Saturday Snippets…Welcome to the day when whimsey reigns supreme… there is music and some messages about the environment…the discovery of the worlds longest animal ..weird fruit which also appeared on Star Trek Deep Space 9…and so much more…I do hope you enjoy!

Well, that’s it for today…I hope you have enjoyed the read…if you have please head over and leave a comment it makes my day to hear from you …Love Carol xx


Saturday Snippets…16th January 2020…


Welcome to this weeks Saturday Snippets…in many ways, my favourite post of the week as I can indulge my whimsy…The healthy eating is…starting slowly…the good news the Xmas cake is now eaten…the bad news is my neighbours gave us some lovely honey-roasted bananas yesterday..2 packs…xx

Did you know? While the world was sheltering last year and maybe people and children were beginning to think that nothing new and exciting happened…Well, it did… a new Monkey and the longest creature on earth was discovered last year…how cool is that?

The creature is more like a jellyfish than a worm and is actually a colonial organism made up of smaller, specialized polyps and medusoids, collectively known as zooids, which act like humans inside a submarine, each zooid managing a different physiological function such as propulsion or gastric function.

This week in my Kitchen…

The bread making is going well I am now tweaking the recipe by slowly increasing the amount of stone-ground whole wheat flour to my sandwich loaf far so good I haven’t had to tweak the other ingredients yet although as I increase the ratio of whole wheat flour I will have to increase the liquid.

This is because the germ and bran that are present in whole wheat flour can absorb more liquid than the endosperm. … In general, the more whole wheat flour in the dough, the more water you will need to use.

Foccacia...was the new bread I made this week…for a first attempt it came out well the texture was good the size of my tin was not I should have used a bigger baking tin as the bread rose more than I anticipated…Recipe to follow next week…x

Home Baked Foccacia topped with parmesan cheese.

The one thing I do acknowledge though is cooking like many things is a learning curve especially with new recipes as ovens vary, humidity can affect baking so many varients which is why often when I try a new recipe I halve the ingredients and always follow the recipe exactly and if it comes out perfectly the first time that’s good… no tweaks required but often some tweaks are a given because of personal taste and that can be a big variable alongside other factors.

 National Food Days…it’s spicy hot chilly day…

It had to happen and who’s a happy bunny then? Moi…Its the red-hot day of the year…

The world’s chilli heads, heat-seekers and extreme eaters can take their passion to extremes. International Hot and Spicy Foods Day …There are habanero-eating challenges to fancy-dress contests and cook-offs of popular spicy hot recipes.

This little dip is a recipe from Bali given to me by my grandson’s girlfriend, it is very easy to make but made more special by the addition of tamarind. 

Called Rujak sauce it is lovely with mangoes.

  • Take 200 gm of palm sugar shaved.
  • 15 gm of tamarind flesh and 5 tbsp of water leave to infuse for 5 mins and then drain and keep the tamarind flavoured water.
  • 6 or more Thai chillies.
  • 1/4 tsp shrimp paste and 1/4tsp salt.

Blitz all these ingredients together and you have fiery little sauce.

There are so many different types, including Thai Birds Eye, Carolina Reapers, Ghost Peppers, Habanero, Red Cayenne Pepper, Serrano, Guajillo, Poblano, Peppadew, and much more. They all bring a different level of heat and a different type of flavour to dishes.

Among serious chilli lovers… it also re-kindles the great debate: which chilli pepper tops the official Scoville heat scale?

That crown goes to the…

#1: Carolina Reaper. 1,400,000 to 2,200,000 Scoville heat units.

The Washed Ashore Project:

A beautiful project or the artwork is… it also sends a message …This video only has one like and that is mine…please have look and if you like the art and the message please them a like.

Washed Ashore is a non-profit community art project founded by artist and educator, Angela Haseltine Pozzi in 2010. The project is based in Bandon, Oregon, where Angela first recognized the amount of plastic washing up on the beaches she loved and decided to take action. Since 2010, Washed Ashore has processed tons of plastic pollution from Pacific beaches to create monumental art that is awakening the hearts and minds of viewers to the global marine debris crisis.

Only In Thailand…

Bloggers Corner…Smorgasbord Blogger Daily…

Although my Fish Pie is featured here I am also sharing the post with two other fabulous cooks…I know you all know me but if you are not familiar with Amy and Dorothy please check them out as they both post some wonderful recipes…

Amy showcased Kalua Pork Loco MocoSpinach Salad with Pears and Walnuts and Dorothy showcased Roasted Shrimp Cocktail with Avocado and Melon all recipes which I am definitely going to try they sound delicious…So head over to Sally’s but after you have eaten or you will come away drooling and ravenous…xx

This week’s …Weird Fruit

kiwano melon

Looking like something from outer space (and, in fact, it once made an appearance on Star Trek, Deep Space Nine as a Golana melon (episode name: “Time’s Orphan”).but the Kiwano melon is actually grown in Southern Africa, California and New Zealand. Nicknamed the “horned melon,” its yellow, stubby exterior encases a bright green, jelly-like fruit with edible seeds. The fruit has a citrusy flavour that some liken to a mix of cucumber, lime and banana.

Time for some Music…

January 1992-Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton unplugged session for MTV included a reworked acoustic version of Layla which earned the album 6 Grammy Awards including the award for Record of the Year.

Thank you for popping in today I hope you have enjoyed Saturday Snippets …as always I look forward to your comments as you all know I love to chat…Thanx Carol xx

Saturday Snippets…9th January 2020…

Welcome to this weeks Saturday Snippets…in many ways my favourite post of the week as I can indulge my whimsy…Christmas and New Year are all now done and dusted…the tree and the decorations are all packed away until next year…

The healthy eating is…starting slowly…I start the day with good intentions and then that dang Christmas cake calls me…saying eat me…it does it speaks to me…

This morning in my kitchen…

Morning Glory…which can mean many things to many people, in this case, it is a beautiful Water Spinach which I stir fry with garlic and chillies…

There is no second-guessing kids is there.?.. Our grandson Aston went to the local shop yesterday after school to get a treat for after his dinner…He came back with a big bunch of Morning Glory which is Thai water spinach which he had as an extra vegetable last night and requested it again today…who am I to argue with a kid who loves veggies over sweets…

morning glory fresh from the market

Stir-fried Morning Glory or Pad Pak Boon Fai Daeng is also known as water spinach…It is a very popular vegetable dish in Thailand and one I have for breakfast/brunch quite often with rice.
This is a very quick dish to cook once you have all your ingredients prepared..5 mins at the most.

  • 1 bunch of Morning Glory
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic
  • 3 or more Thai Chillies
  • 2 tbsp of Oyster Sauce
  • 1 tbsp of Soy Sauce
  • 1/2-1 tbsp of fermented soybean paste or oil with soya beans ( optional)
  • 1/2 to 1 tbsp of oil
  • Water if req

Let’s Cook!

Wash and cut your morning-glory into 4-6 inch pieces.
Bash the chillies and garlic in a pestle and mortar
Heat the oil in a pan until very hot.
Add the garlic and chillies and stir-fry ( stirring) for 15-20 seconds being careful not to let the garlic burn.

Stirfried Morning Glory
Add morning-glory and all other ingredients except for the vegetable stock.
Stir-fry for 40 seconds and add vegetable stock and stir-fry for another 10 seconds.

That’s it…Done!

Serve with steamed rice or as a side dish.

Tomorrow is Rod Stewarts Birthday he will be 76 years young…I have been a fan forever ever since those early days when he joined the Small Faces…Rod’s first single was “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl”

Controversy has always lurked in the shadows of the Blues and this song courted more than most…originally recorded on 5 May 1937 at The Leland Hotel in Aurora, Illinois by the John Lee Williamson, the original “Sonny Boy”

It was Sonny Boy’s first recording session for Bluebird and he was accompanied by Big Joe Williams and Robert Lee McCoy on guitars. On this version, it was billed as ‘Good Morning, School Girl’, whereas later versions have tended to insert that word “little’ in the title to reflect the lyrics of Sonny Boy’s version.

Although I love Rod Stewart…This version is my favourite by Muddy Waters…


Conservation Corner:

Muddy Waters:   Clean drinking water should be a fundamental right …According to this damming report, it isn’t…I really cannot understand how man deliberately continues to pollute our beautiful world will there ever be the day when all this wanton pollution stops?

Muddy Waters: The Pollution Killing Kosovo’s Lakes and Rivers

Did you know?

1972…Rod Stewart’s 1st #1 hit (You Wear it Well)

Written by Rod Stewart and Martin Quittenton, performed by Stewart. It uses an arrangement markedly similar to that of “Maggie May”, one of Stewart’s hits from the previous year.

Did you know?

Back in January 1660…Samuel Pepys began his famous diary in which he chronicled life in London including the Great Plague of 1664-65 and the Great Fire of 1666.

All those years ago and what have we learnt? Health and safety and so much more was unknown back then but with the advances of science so much more is known now and yet the incidence of virus and cross-contamination seems to be on the increase with more predicted in the future.

Where will it end?

Weird Thai Fruit:

Called lamut khamen in Thai but actually, few Thais know it, and even fewer have tasted it. I suspect that the first tree grown in Thailand came from the seed of fruit taken from across the border in Cambodia, and the grower named it “lamut khamen” after the country or its people (khamen is the Thai word for Cambodian), as he did not know its proper name.

It’s commonly known also as eggfruit or Canistel fruit, because of its flesh that is bright egg yolk-yellow colour and when ripe, is smooth and custardy, similar to a hard-boiled yolk.

The sweet, mousse-like flesh of the canistel makes a great sugar substitute in many recipes.

The most popular way to use canistel is in an eggfruit nog: simply peel a ripe canistel fruit, remove the seeds and combine the flesh in a blender along with milk, sugar, a touch of vanilla extract, and a pinch of grated nutmeg. Blend until smooth.

Canistel also works great in custards, ice cream, spreads, pie fillings, and baked into bread, cakes, and pancakes. Or try it simply blended in with some almond milk, oat milk, or regular old milk for a satisfying smoothie. Lime and honey pair well with the soft notes of canistel, so add a touch according to your taste.

Canistel was also used in an incredible 71-ingredient cocktail to celebrate the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow! Each ingredient was specially selected to represent each of the competing countries in the Games. 

In China, only about two per cent of the population observes Christmas as a religious holiday, although it is gaining in popularity as a commercial event. However, the main winter festival in China is the New Year celebration that occurs at the end of January. Recently, it’s become known as the Spring Festival and is a time of gift-giving and feasting. A key aspect of the Chinese New Year is ancestor worship, and paintings and portraits are brought out and honoured in the family’s home.

For the first time, Chinese New Year has been recognised as a national public holiday here in Thailand.

red lanterns Chinese New Year

Thailand is a traditional Chinese immigration country. Chinese account for about 12% of the country’s population. About 7 million Chinese live in Thailand, which is an important part of Thailand’s multiculturalism and ethnicity.

Each year in the Chinese calendar is represented by one of twelve animals in the Chinese Zodiac. 2021 will be the year of the Ox.

Here in Udon Thani where I live we have a big Chinese community..our neighbour’s are of Chinese Thai heritage…My grandson also learns Chinese as part of his school curriculum.

I love the Spring festival as it is very colourful and there is lots of lovely dim sum and other Chinese foods although I am not sure how the quarantine will affect the celebrations this year which are held on February 12th 2021.

As it is Rod’s birthday tomorrow I will finish will one of my favourite tracks …Enjoy!

Thank you for popping in today I hope you have enjoyed Saturday Snippets …as always I look forward to your comments as you all know I love to chat…Thanx Carol xx

Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Monday 4th January 2020 – Carol Taylor, Jennie Fitzkee, Judith Barrow

I am amongst very good company today…Thank you, Sally, for promoting my Saturday Snippets…Hugs xx

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the first of the blogger daily posts this week with some links to articles I am sure you will enjoy..

The first post today is from food writer Carol Taylorwith her packed Saturday Snippets, today with interesting events on this day in the past, bars of soap making a come back,music, dancing and some great warming soup recipes.. head over to enjoy…

Good morning and it is a cold one here…I have sox on for the first time in 8 years, leggings, a t/shirt and a sloppy jumper…My hands were cold but between typing and kneading the bread they have warmed up somewhat…

I am seeing beautiful images of newly laid snow and I know for many of you it is much colder but I am used to warmth and 11 degrees is cold for me…hence the sox…

Show business and the music industry is well known…

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Saturday Snippets… 2nd January 2021…

Good morning and it is a cold one here…I have sox on for the first time in 8 years, leggings, a t/shirt and a sloppy jumper…My hands were cold but between typing and kneading the bread they have warmed up somewhat…

I am seeing beautiful images of newly laid snow and I know for many of you it is much colder but I am used to warmth and 11 degrees is cold for me…hence the sox…

Show business and the music industry is well known for being fickle…such is life you could say…it was back on the 1st January 1962 and the Fab Four aka The Beatles travelled all the way from Liverpool to the Decca Studios in London for a recording audition.

Being nervous, the audition didn’t go too well and a few weeks later their manager Brian Epstein was told ” they didn’t have a future in the show business”

As it is debatable who made that decision I am sure they lived to regret that error of judgement or maybe it spurred the band members to step it up a notch…The rest is history…

Subsequent signings, among others, included the Rolling Stones, the Animals, the Moody Blues, the Small Faces and Tom Jones all who all had/have long careers in the industry…

Did you know?

J.R.R. Tolkien Day on January 3 is “The Lord of the Rings” author’s birthday and you’re encouraged to toast him in celebration. You may remember from the story that Frodo toasts his Uncle Bilbo on Bilbo’s birthday every year. Now, over sixty years after the trilogy’s original publication, The Tolkien Society asks fans to honour Tolkien’s birth, which itself was January 3, 1892.

Conservation Corner:

A hundred years ago, cargo bikes were the standard vehicle for many trades and deliveries. In actual fact, cargo bikes are still the norm here in Thailand and even hand-pushed carts are still used…Whether its to bring round brushes and brooms or to sharpen knives and garden tools or to collect bottles and cardboard a hand cart is still in daily use…

It seems like Copenhagen are calling themselves the cargo bike capital of the world…

Did you know?

The arrival of liquid soap and its wasteful packaging has caused a downturn in the sales of bar soap…The arrival of covid-19 has seen a surge in sales all these adverts promoting washing your hands properly with bar soap has helped …both the sales and the environment.

Between 2014-15, sales of bar soap fell 2.2 per cent compared to overall market growth of 2.7 per cent. But now, following decades of decline, bar soap appears to be back in the game. Sales of bar soap have climbed by nearly 3 per cent over the past year, according to data research by Kantar Worldpanel. And sales of bar soap grew faster than both liquid soaps and shower products over the period. “For the first time this century,” Kantar Worldpanel’s strategic insight director, Tim Nancholas, said, “barred soap is making a return.” Seriously, this really is cause for celebration.

Going from despairing at the waste in the world I am now becoming optimistic and although Covid-19 is scaring me with increased infections it is also giving me hope for a less wasteful future when I see changes like this…

Bloggers Corner:

This is one of(so) many of my favourite tunes…Here the old and the new have been remixed…

I love it! First seen (by) me over @ Smorgasbord Magazine...

National Soup Month:

I love a bowl of soup my favourite since I was a child has been tomato soup and although here we have beautiful soups like Tom Yum Goong…I still love a bowl of tomato soup…


  • 8 or 9 tomatoes, cored and quartered
  • 3 red bell peppers, seeded and quartered
  • 2 small yellow onions, cut into wedges
  • 6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 5 cups homemade vegetable broth
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • olive oil

Let’s Cook!

Tomato and Red Pepper Soup.

Preheat the oven 375F/190C

Grease two baking sheets and place tomatoes skin side down on one, then lightly coat the peppers and onions in olive oil and place on the other baking tray also throw the unpeeled garlic into the tray…Pop it in your preheated oven for about 45 minutes.

When the tomatoes and peppers are roasted heat your vegetable stock in a pan big enough to take the tomatoes and peppers. Add your roasted tomatoes and peppers to the vegetable stock and simmer for 15 minutes.

Tomato and red pepper Soup.


Allow your soup to cool slightly and then either using a stick blender or your liquidiser blend to your desired consistency…Taste and season.

Serve with a swirl of cream or natural yoghurt if liked…


I love Christmas Carol’s and New Year Songs…I heard this version of Auld Lang Syne on Songs for the New Year/cliveblogs…by Mindy Smith.

Pop over to Clive’s as he has a few other New Year songs which I hadn’t heard and some Abba if they are your choice…something for all tastes…

New Year Resolutions:

I gave up making them years ago as I never kept them and many things like if you smoke pledging to give up don’t as something like that you have to really want to give up so a new year pledge to me is pointless…

Most New Year’s resolutions fail. A study from the United Kingdom’s Royal Society of Public Health found that “quitting smoking is the most difficult resolution to keep.” Only 4 % of those who attempt to quit smoking unaided remain smoke-free one year later. Another study, from the University of Scranton, found only 8 % of people who make resolutions meet their goal. This is known as “false hope syndrome.”

However…Coronavirus: Smokers quit in highest numbers in a decade.

Myself, I completed a dry November and intend to complete a dry January…December was not dry…I am also committing to Meat-free Mondays and cooking more plant-based meals…I have gradually been cutting down..not out …meat… part of my personal drive to reduce my carbon footprint and take another step forward in my pledge to be more environmentally friendly…read my story in my new column over at Smorgasbord Magazine starting on Wednesday, January  20th 2021.

These are not New Year Resolutions but lifestyle changes...helped by one’s other half who continues to astound me every day with his newfound thirst for health aided by his first electronic device…yesterday he was extolling the virtues of drinking green tea…This is a meat and two veg man who has never listened to me or tried any of my drinks he just drinks English tea and now he is exploring ginger and green tea and after years of me trying to get him to quit smoking now he has done his own research…he has said he is giving up smoking…Which proves it is never too late to learn…

Thank you for popping in today I hope you have enjoyed the first Saturday Snippets of 2021…as always I look forward to your comments as you all know I love to chat…Thanx Carol xx

Saturday Snippets…’Tis the Saturday before Christmas 19th December 2020…

Welcome to Saturday Snippets where I engage my whimsey and kitsch well it is that time of year…Christmas is not celebrated here and there are even fewer nods to Christmas here in the North of Thailand …I do believe Christmas is for kiddies and try to keep the magic going although this year methinks Covid has highjacked any hopes of buying anything the least bit festive …I do however have some festive parcels on the way from family and a dear friend to look forward to…x

In my kitchen:

What’s been cooking in my kitchen this week? A lovely chicken massaman cooking is the way to go, my Christmas ham is brining nicely and if you haven’t started yours its not too late a loin of pork only takes between 5-6 days so you just have time, my Christmas cake has had its final drink of Brandy which means today or tomorrow I will be making Marzipan…As it is National Pear month I have pickled some pears this week there was also quite a lot of the beautiful syrup over…and not one to be wasteful I have popped it in a little jar and will use it as a glaze for when we cook pork.

Pickled Pears:

  • Orange zest and juice
  • 2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp Juniper Berries lightly crushed
  • 10 cloves
  • 5cm fresh ginger sliced thinly
  • 800 fl oz cider
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 kg of  raw brown sugar
  • 2 kg pears peeled and quartered or cut into 8 depending on the size of the pears.

Let’s Pickle!

Put all the ingredients in a pan except for the pears, cook on a low heat stirring until the sugar has dissolved add the peeled and cut pear halves and cook for 15-20 minutes until they are tender.

Pears cooking in the syrup.

Remove the pears from the pan and drain, keep to one side and boil the syrup rapidly until it has reduced by about a 1/3 and is slightly thickened.

Put the pears in warm sterilised jars and add the syrup covering the pears. Seal tightly and leave for about 2 weeks and then enjoy with cheese and or your favourite meat.

N.B. Cooks Notes...I halved the recipe as it was the first time I had pickled pears it made 2 jars of pickles and I had some syrup over…the original recipe used all-spice berries which I didn’t have so I used Juniper berries…

I also made my last bread pudding of the year and added some cranberries to the mix to give it a festive pop it is really lovely those cranberries add that little pop of tartness…The last of my bananas I made into some banana muffins…and some latkes with a tropical twist... they were very nice the recipe came from a dear fellow blogger… Dolly from koolkosherkitchen…

Tropical Latkes

Please pop over to her blog ..say hello she will make you very welcome and have a look at her recipes they are all delicious and easy to follow.

Hubby also informed me that instead of wasting the banana skins he will be making some fertilizer for the garden with them…he is finding some new skills and for a man who at 74 is the proud possessor of his first electronic device…a man who won’t have a mobile phone and has never in his life used an Atm it is not bad going …

Since I have been baking my own bread I find I am not getting the leftovers which I have always kept in a bag in the freezer for when I want to make bread pudding or breadcrumbs…not sure that is a good thing neither does hubby as he is wondering why he had added a couple of pounds…eating too much bread and cakes is the culprit…x

Did you know? The Night of the Radishes” is one of the annual Christmas customs in Oaxaca, Mexico. On December 23rd, The Night of the Radishes (Noche de Los Rábanos in Spanish) is an annual event in the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, dedicated to the carving of oversized radishes. The event has its origins in the colonial period when radishes were introduced by the Spanish. Oaxaca has a long wood carving tradition and farmers began carving radishes into figures as a way to attract customers’ attention at the Christmas market, which was held in the main square on December 23. In 1897, the city created the formal competition. As the city has grown, the city has had to dedicate land to the growing of the radishes as the event has become very popular attracting over 100 contestants and thousands of visitors. However, since the radishes wilt soon after cutting the works can only be displayed for a number of hours, which has led to very long lines for those wishing to see the works.


Let’s have some music…A tune or two…

Silent Night is one of my all-time favourite Christmas Carol’s  The song has been recorded by many singers across many music genres… “Silent Night” has been recorded at least 733 times over the past 36 years alone.

This weeks rendition is from  Jonas Kaufmann –

Conservation Corner:

Depending on where you live in the world some of you are going to have a white Christmas…Well, FORGET FROSTED GRASS and snow-covered windowsills, in Australia it’s the Christmas beetle that heralds the start of the festive season. They are so pretty with their metallic coats.

The metallic scarabs are synonymous with summer Down Under – or at least they used to be.

Research, however, suggests that  Australia’s endemic Christmas beetle (Anoplognathus) population is on the decline.

Entomologist Dr Chris Reid, from the Australian Museum, attributes the drop in sightings to drier than usual spring weather, especially along the coast of New South Wales.

Christmas beetles in the greater Sydney region have also been victims of urban sprawl, with species disappearing from the city’s west due to much of their natural habitat being used for development.

I know people have to live in houses but urban sprawl has a lot to answer for and more care and research should be undertaken before permission to develop has been given or provision should be made to keep wildlife disruption to a minimum…Most cannot readjust.

THE  NATURAL habitat for Christmas beetles is woodland, where there are plenty of trees and rich soil. The larvae develop in the soil, and remain there as curl grubs, feeding on grass and plant roots, as well as the surface roots of eucalypts.

As fully grown adults, they mainly eat eucalyptus leaves but are known to consume the foliage of introduced species, such as the peppercorn tree.

The reason we only see these colourful insects during the festive season has nothing to do with Saint Nick aka Santa and there was you thinking it did…Ha Ha

BUT the end of spring and start of summer is when the larvae hatch out. The adults aren’t active during the winter months; they are larvae only during those months. When the adults are spotted during the Christmas month they’re at the stage of laying eggs.

This time of year is also mating season.

Christmas Beetle. 1

Image by John Vossen from Pixabay

If you are lucky enough to see them during the day on young eucalypts… they’re usually in clusters trying to mate, with the males pushing each other off the females.

They are very pretty though and Christmassy …Don’t you think?

The information about the Christmas Beetle came from Australia’s National Geographic Magazine.

Bloggers Corner:

As you know I love Christmas Carol’s and Christmas Adverts…I have only quite recently started following Clive who is posting a daily Christmas Advent Calendar…which consists of two tracks and a comic strip…While I love Christmas songs like Clive I don’t like listening to overpaid diva’s screaming them out…Clive has introduced me to artists who were mostly previously unknown to me and are well worth a listen…some tracks are quite beautiful…some very funny and some you will only wish to listen to maybe once a year…This one is a Cappella (which) I love…and it’s funny they remind me a little of the Barber Shop Boys.

Please pop over to say hello to Clive and have a listen there are so many tunes and such a variety…you are guaranteed to come away with a smile on your face…

Finally today …Christmas Adverts: Spoiler Alert you will need tissues…a box x

That’s all for this week and Saturday Snippetts next week it will be all over…

Have a great weekend …please stay safe and shop online where you can or a homemade gift are the ones which show how much you really care…Early next week I will have a few ideas of homemade gifts that can be made in your kitchen…

Stay safe and well, have fun and laugh a lot as laughter is surely the best medicine and its free…xxx