Living On The Edge, Christmas Pudding & The New Niece

On Thursday evening, Bear decided to transfer from the dining table to the sofa with his iPad and phone, to be comfortable with his internet addiction… while I finished up the genealogy I was working on before joining him. The dog is of course curled up in my spot on the sofa beside him, so I sat on the other side of the dog, not wanting to disturb his sleep, seeing as the little shit had performed several ‘near misses’ and ‘hit and run’s’ that day whilst tear-assing like a demon around the living room and patio… and I had the bruises to prove it.!

Eventually Bear re-enters reality long enough to start streaming the Mandalorian, but then pauses it and goes back to his iPad. Twenty minutes later he puts that down and picks up his phone, then goes back to his iPad. Meanwhile I’m sat like a dick on the sofa, twiddling my damn thumbs and waiting for him to un-pause the Mandalorian, so we can watch it. Intuitively the dog has sensed my irritation with his internet engrossed Papa and decides to go bring him back to the present by clambering across his iPad screen and I moved into my spot on the sofa.

Bear then checks the time and says it’s now too late to watch the Mandalorian and switches the TV to some MTV crap, while I direct a filthy look in his direction.! I’ve just spent a little over an hour sat on my own, in silence, waiting for him to put the fucking Internet down and spend time with me, while he’s been poncing about playing some Star Trek style game, waiting for me to sit in my spot on the sofa because it seems the TV remote doesn’t work if I’m even an inch out of place.! Very little has been said in the meantime, while I consider the benefits of smashing his sodding iPad over his head and shoving the wi-fi cable up his ass.!

Yeah, taking deep breaths doesn’t work for me… homicide probably would though.! Bear sure does like living on the edge of my sanity.

Which leads me to today’s Christmas pudding, which I started to make on Tuesday of last week, until I discovered the alcohol we had was either really old or damn near gone, so got all the dry ingredients, sans fruit, all together and sealed in a Tupperware box. On Wednesday Bear begrudgingly went to Gall & Gall after work to get a certain Pedro Ximenez sherry I’d requested, which having been recommended by Nigella Lawson, was a must try.! He comes home with a different Pedro Ximenez sherry because it was cheaper and he got a second bottle for half price… *sigh.! FML*

So on Wednesday evening I pour 3/4 of a bottle into the dried fruit and leave it to soak until the morning, hoping to God it doesn’t smell like paint thinner.! On Thursday I discover I’m almost out of aluminium foil.. ffs.! But at least it means another day of soaking for the dried fruit, which smells divine (thank you ethereal being I’m doubtful exists). Thursday evening I get the new aluminium foil and set to work to find I don’t have enough butter… yeah, it’s been one of those weeks.! I daren’t ask Bear to go back to the store for butter because he’s done a full week of early shifts and is almost dead on his feet… then Thursday night happens.

Friday, I don’t give two shits how dead he is, I want butter and I want it now or I’m just gonna dump the whole damned lot in the bin and drink the remaining sherry all by myself. Friday night, after driving an extra 62 miles to pick the kids up and bring them back for the weekend, Bear gets me the butter which goes straight in the freezer. We have a fairly pleasant evening as Bear’s “Oh shit.!” radar has finally kicked in and he’s being overly affectionate, while leaving his iPad on the dining table. Very wise. This morning I’m up early to get on with the pudding before I give up and get to work grating frozen butter, mixing the dry ingredients into the sherry and fruit and getting it into the glass bowl to be steamed for 6 hours.!

After almost two, the pudding has risen, which it shouldn’t, and the lid of the steamer is now an inch off the pan.. fuck.! Not good, because the pudding is now drying out and not cooking properly. So Bear and I had a brainstorm and came up with a different pan with a tighter lid, but no wiggle room so I couldn’t see how far up the bowl the water was… taking a chance I filled it to where I could just see a glint and put it in the oven. After three hours and two more paranoia fuelled refills, the pan lid starts vibrating, so I whipped it out the oven and let it cool before checking to see what was going on.

The pudding is overcooked on top, but undercooked on the bottom. Ffs.! I knew I should have given it up. Bear’s solution… turn it upside down on to a plate and shake it.! So now I have a dinner plate covered in over cooked and under cooked pudding pieces and lots of crumbs because rather than using a little common sense and allowing the pudding to cool in the bowl and sliding a knife around it to loosen the baked on parts, it got the shaking of it’s life and fell to pieces all over the counter top. So that’s Christmas pudding for this year… done and dusted. I’m not playing anymore.

On the plus side, my sister is pregnant.! After her ‘edge of COVID’ wedding back in March (the one we spent a fortune for and ended up locked down two days before.!), she and the new brother in law have been trying for a baby, in vain until last month when they discovered she was 5 weeks pregnant. So overjoyed are they to be becoming parents that their tiny human has already been gendered and named.! I only hope the disappointment isn’t too crushing if they discover they were wrong. Baby Nyla is due on June 19th 2021 and I am very much looking forward to having a baby niece.

The elusive baby is still elusive and presumed non-existent. It being mid-November with still no sign of my brother’s youngest daughter giving birth to whatever she decided she’s been carrying around inside her for the past 61 weeks and making out she was on the verge of birthing. I think she needs help. Miscarriages are horrifically traumatic, I’ve survived through 6 and needed help I didn’t get… which probably explains a lot. Pretending she’s pregnant in the hopes that it might actually come true is not a healthy way to cope or to live.

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claytoonz

Nationally Syndicated Editorial Cartoonist

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