I am going to have to change the way Monday night unfurls itself. Tuesday morning is bin day and so Monday night the bins go out, which means I put off doing any hoovering until Monday by using the excuse that the best day to empty the Hoover is the day I get rid of the bins.

It seemed to work for a while, but it has violently telescoped  all the housework activity into a day which quite frankly starts off being a tough one to feel motivated about. After the rude shock of having to adjust back to weekday early starts after again negotiated (albeit with varied success) a slightly later start to the day over the weekend, jamming enforced activity at the end of the day as well gets a bit much to cope with.

It got worse a while ago when I decided that Monday was also the night to cook off the chicken that I buy for the dogs on the weekend. One kilo of steaming drumsticks to be cooled and stripped, carpets to be cleaned and the dogs don’t walk themselves, you know. Yep, Monday night has been getting to be a real chore lately.

The final straw has been 24 Hours in Emergency. This British documentary series, which basically follows the stories of a couple of patients who have been admitted to A&E in London, interspersed with interviews with the doctors and nurses who treat them, the patients’ families and (hopefully) the recovered patients themselves is my must-see TV of the week. There is currently a double bill on Monday nights starting at 8.30pm. All tools need to be down by then.

Last night was tricky, but I made it. The chicken didn’t, though. I had to push the chicken through to tonight. As it happened, I got home and my husband had just got in from taking the dogs from an enormous walk. Archie looked physically and emotionally spent and Lucy looked hopeful for another trip out, but almost resigned to the fact that she was not going to get one.

Chicken on the stove, I decided to do one more thing that I had failed to complete over the weekend. I made a lumberjack cake. It is currently sitting on the kitchen counter cooling and has filled the house with the sweet smell of baked fruit. I have never eaten one of these before and until a few weeks ago, I had never heard of a lumberjack cake, but with apple and date as its filling it looked promising.

The weirdest thing is the topping. Coconut, butter milk and sugar melted together over a soft heat, spread over the cooked cake and returned to the oven for the final twenty minutes of cooking. When I was stirring it in the pot, it looked like some weird coconut porridge, now the cake is out and it had browned and firmed to a soft but crispy brown topping.

I have no idea whether the cake has worked. I am not supposed to eat cake at the moment so I am waiting to see if my husband will try it. Problem is, he does not like coconut so I may be waiting sometime. I guess if the worse comes to the worse I can take it into the office, or take it to my parents and heat it up and serve with custard. But if it comes down to it, I may be prepared to pay the ultimate sacrifice and just check that the recipe has worked out OK first.

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