Ginger Biscuits

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It’s been a while since I’ve done any baking (as opposed to cooking), so today I felt like making some ginger biscuits – which I haven’t made since school (reminded by @ClaireMaxim1 tweet about rock cakes – something I also used to make as a child)!

The instructions from my mum (who’d forgotten about these) were:

  • 8oz (225g) SR Flour
  • 4oz (Hard marge e.g. Stork)
  • 1 teaspoon bicarb of soda
  • 1 level teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4oz caster sugar
  • 2 good tablespoons golden syrup

Grease baking trays. Set over 375F/Gas 5. Rub fat into flour, ginger and bicarb. Add sugar and warmed syrup. Mix well. Roll into walnut sized balls with floured hands. Place on trays with space to spread and flatten with a fork. Bake 10 minutes. Remove from trays whilst hot to cooling trays.

So – I didn’t quite have enough marge so mixed with butter, ginger may have added a tad too much, and syrup is BB 2011 – but it’s only sugar, right?! Raw mixture tasted good… I did make them the right size, but they *ahem appear to have spread a little. Well “just the one biscuit then”…

Theory of Change

Organization Development (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0749460946/britishomefro-21)“The 1st thing to remember is that the only person who loves change is a baby with a wet nappy.” #change

p41-42 of Organization Development: A Practitioner’s Guide for OD and HR gives 5 possible theories, and how it might affect your Organisational Development strategies (this is an OD bid!):
  • Action research theory
  • Lewin’s change theories
  • Systems theory
  • Complexity theories
  • Appreciative enquiry

P41  on Twitpic

P42  on Twitpic

Meantime, on Twitter:

40 minutes to a loaf of bread!

I have just eaten a couple of slices from this loaf (well, I did a bit of other blogging after), and am resisting have too much more :-). At 5.45pm I hadn’t even started making it…  It wouldn’t be much good as a sandwich loaf as it didn’t quite stay whole (but maybe that’s because I was cutting up straight out of the oven)… but it’s “well tasty”.

What’s the recipe?

  • 500gm Flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 400ml (buttermilk or) yoghurt

Mix it all in, but not for too long (just til all the flour is folded in… which I didn’t think it was going to do initially!)

Flour a baking tray & ‘plonk’ it in a (preheated) 180 degree over for 1/2 hour.

#LoveMonday

This story just caught my eye…

There’s a little, grassroots hashtag going around Twitter this morning called #lovemonday and it deserves your attention (even if you have never tweeted in your life). For those of you in the know, it is a bit like #followfriday but instead of suggesting people others should follow (which is also a lovely thing to do!), you simply select 3 people you follow and tell them what you appreciate about them. Then, rather than the mutual backslapping that often occurs on FollowFriday, those people tell 3 people they follow the same and so on and soon we have an entire Twittersphere full of encouragements! And what better thing to do on a Monday eh?!

Read the full post and post your #lovemonday’s!

Forethought for Tuesday in Holy Week #EasterLive

Thought 1: What to talk about today?

So, it’s Tuesday, what does that mean? Not knowing the Easter timeline all that well, I was very pleased to spot this Holy Week Timeline via someone’s Twitter account, and blogged about it earlier today on BigBible.

According to the timeline above, we’re onto the withered fig tree, but EasterLive gives us a clear outline for the stories that we are looking at.

Thought 2: Tom Wright: The Parables

So, Tom Wright has talked to us about the Tenants in the Vineyard:

and in week 4, it was all about parables!

Thought 3: What has everyone else been talking about?

EasterLive have given us clickable options to what others have been talking about (I am assuming across the whole hashtag, rather than just for today):

Ah no, I just clicked, it’s not doing a tag cloud, it has given a list of pre-suggested words (so #Easterlive tweeters, get using them), as there’s a couple that are empty if you click through into them.

Thought 4: Arguments

Do arguments have to difficult, harsh, etc.? I googled ‘Postive Argument’, which may be some kind of scientific term, but I liked The Happiness Project outline of how to positively contribute to arguments..

There’s so many things we could follow around the web, but I’m off to meet with Huw, the imaginative person behind EasterLive, to celebrate his upcoming birthday…

5 thoughts for Holy Monday #EasterLive

OK, so today on #EasterLive, and in church last night, the focus is on Jesus clearing the Temple.

Thought 1

Our readings last night were: Jeremiah 7; http://plixi.com/p/93388465 and Matthew 21 http://plixi.com/p/93388772, and the sermon was a great mix of theological reflection (the Jews expected this great King, then he reprimanded them), and practical application (do what we sing, and what we do throughout the week, match up?)…

which sent me on a little hunt for material online, including this great piece on ‘Holy Monday‘ (more commonly associated with Catholic celebrations).

Thought 2

What did the Temple look like… I wondered what images 12baskets would have (none under the heading ‘Holy Monday’… others have some to upload?), but ‘Temple’ brought back the following entry:

http://12baskets.co.uk/view/images/temple_mount

Obviously, most of it is now in ruins… but this is a place that I one day hope to see with Oak Hall (I have met so many people who have been with Oak Hall, and have heard nothing but enthusiasm for the trip)., so I thought I’d check out Flickr (Creative Commons again), and brought up a scale model of what it may have looked like at the time:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/emeryjl/508067090/

Thought 3

Flickr is very much about catching photos (whereas 12baskets encourages the uploading of paintings, etc. too), so I wasn’t hopeful when I put in ‘Jesus, Temple, Jerusalem’, but interestingly this image came up… Jesus may have been throwing the Jewish marketplace out of the Church, but should we (as Christians) be more active in the Market Place (whether by that we mean shopping centres… or plenty of people shop (and plenty of other activities) online (hence @bigbible):

Thought 4

What’s going on on the #EasterLive hashtag?

And @easyrew has started a really interesting (and thoughtful) debate re: whether #EasterLive works as an idea… I’m with Bryony… I love seeing people TRY things, then we sit back, talk about it, and see which bits we should take forward/which need tweaking or abandoning!

Thought 5

If you’re keen for another Passion story running in real time, check out @thepassionexp (text, Tweets, Facebook, etc…), which interestingly (actually) could be tagged #EasterLive also…:

Pray that you have a thoughtful Holy Monday, and if you’ve been doing #bigread2011, don’t forget today’s reading.

6 thoughts for Palm Sunday #EasterLive

Have you heard of EasterLive yet? If not, check it out, and see the stories that people are posting on the #EasterLive hashtag on Twitter (if you’re not sure how to use Twitter, there’s a great guide here), and last year’s story is being retold on Facebook.

It’s Passover week in 1st Century Jerusalem. A bustling throng of Jewish pilgrims have gathered in the city. But this year a preacher/carpenter from Nazareth is set to turn the tables of history – right before their eyes. This is the Easter story and this is your cue.

By Tweeting your story, the Easter(LIVE) website allows you to showcase your very own Passion Play. Be it a historical and Biblical account or a poetic, visual, musical or creative retelling - it’s up to you. It’s a chance to explore, to learn and be creative. Give it your personal stamp, bring it to life and share it with everyone.

I am going on a visual, digi-explorer journey, to see where my thoughts, prompts from others on Twitter, and Google take me… and may God prompt me to put something useful on here, alongside the materials we’ve been producing for BigBible!!

Thought 1

I am a keen supporter of 12Baskets, and am embedding myself in using the tools in order to provide feedback on how we can encourage its use using social media… so many people spend so long preparing sermons, tracking down images that can be (legitimately) used (praying before you download from Google isn’t really an ethical approach!), and we could do so much more if we SHARED images. The site already has over 35,000 images – what can you contribute?!

Anyway, I went onto 12baskets to look for images related to Palm Sunday… and here’s your opportunity to add to the 8 images currently online, although there’s also a great selection of written thoughts, hymns, and materials to purchase, and picked out the following couple of images:

12Baskets: http://12baskets.co.uk/view/images/palm-leaf-with-sun-shining-through

 

12 Baskets: http://12baskets.co.uk/view/images/jesus_enters_jerusalem_riding_upon_a_donkey

Thought 2

What were the verses that tell us the story of Palm Sunday, of Jesus coming into Jerusalem on a donkey… and note, as Richard Littledale has in his blog… that the donkey doesn’t only appear “in the Christmas story”.

Luke 19:29-40 “When he had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Lives, he sent two of the disciples, saying, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it? just say this, ‘The Lord needs it.’” So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, ‘Why are you untying the colt?’ They said, ‘The Lord needs it.’ Then they brought it to Jesus’ and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, saying, ‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!” Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, order you disciples to stop.’ He answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would shout out.’”

John 12:11-19 “The next day a great crowd that had come to the festival heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, shouting, ‘Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord — the King of Israel!’ Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it; as it is written: ‘Do not be afraid, daughter of Zion. Look, your king is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt!’ His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written of him and had been done to him. So the crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to testify. It was also because they heard he had performed this sign that the crowd went to meet him. The Pharisees then said to one another, ‘You see, you can do nothing. Look, the world has gone after him!’”

eBibleTeacher.com

Thought 3

@richardlittleda had been talking to @vahva, as she’d posted the picture below – donkeys in the churchyard (from today!)… he’d responded to tell her about his blog post… donkeys are not just for Christmas!

Vahva: http://twitpic.com/4lypli

Thought 4

I wonder what YouTube has to offer on this? There are multiple videos on YouTube, but I thought this one was beautifully produced and with a great message…

Thought 5

I grew up in a Brethren church, and I’m not sure we did Easter in the same way that others do. The one thing that has always stuck out in my mind from when I started going to an Anglican church was the prominence of these palm crosses, so I headed over to Flickr to see if I could find a Creative Commons image for that… and went for a little hunt as to their significance. These crosses  can either be given to members of the congregation for them to place somewhere as a reminder of Easter throughout the year, or the alter may be covered with palms which are blessed, then kept, and burned the following year, the ashes used on Ash Wednesday (the beginning of Lent) to mark the forheads of the faithful (from here).

Thought 4Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/perspective/126606466/

Thought 6

Maybe time for a little audio in our multi-media world… and prompted by following another Flickr image, came across AllGloryLaudAndHonor (downloadable MP3, taken from here)

Want more?

You can follow my contributions at http://www.easterlive2011.com/drbexl/ or follow the #EasterLive hashtag.

Slow Cooking

On my to-do list for this year was to try and cook more of my own food (especially that which is then freezable). I’ve never been a fan of ready meals, and especially after having a couple this weekend (I was tired & they were in the reduced section.. Taste the Difference Steak & Ale Dumplings – the meat was so horrible I left it – rest was nice!), I have been having a go with some of my other recipe books – my big plan was to sit down & make bit lists, mark off big sections, etc… but instead, having learnt that I need to do things in more bite-size chunks, I’ve instead picked a handful of recipes from Katie Bishop’s ‘Easy Slow Cooker Recipes‘, including the following, which is a squash, spinach and prawn curry – really nice!

I’m looking forward to getting some more recipes from a friend’s blog (didn’t realise it was hers til today), which works with British ingredients – they look gooooooooooooood!

WTF (Church – wrong or right?)

This picture has been doing the rounds as a sign of a church not being aware of ‘culture’ – however, looking at their Facebook page, I think they are only too aware of what WTF means: “A Wake advertisement hangs outside the north side of the SUB on Thursday. The First Family Church sponsors Wake, which is for college-aged Christians.” An interesting take on getting publicity – not sure what I think of that – always thought FCUK was in rather poor taste…

Clothes-Swap Party

Yesterday, I went to a clothes swap party, and despite expecting to come away with nothing (well, since my chest infection, I’ve put on a lot of weight :-( but it’s steadied now – just waiting to go the other way), but I came away with the following:

It was a really enjoyable evening – no one was quite sure what to do at the beginning, but Lynne had organised it all very well. Racks for bottom half/top half, shoes & bags on the floor, accessories on the table, and as everyone came in, everything got placed on the rails. People were busier chatting/grabbing a snack to begin with, but then one person found a skirt, and suddenly everyone was diving in. Lots of comments that it was lovely to “go shopping” with “the girls” (most at the party were young mums), and the atmosphere was lovely, encouraging about lots of things – and “this doesn’t fit me, why don’t you try it”.  Once the frenzy was over, everyone sat down with some delicious olives, sticky toffee pudding & chocolate fountain (although a certain amount of, “just tried lots of clothes on, should I eat more?! oh well, why not..”). Lynne has been left with quite a big pile of clothes to take to the charity shops – there was still lots of nice things left – they just didn’t fit anyone there (there was probably about 20 of us?!)…

Read Christian Aid’s review of a Clothes Swap party.

London Fringe Festival Short Fiction Awards

Even though the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the big thing that the moment, London’s Fringe Festival continues throughout the year. I was invited to come hear Charly’s short-story which had been short-listed. I don’t leave work til 7, when the event started, and unfortunately they went in alphabetical order, so I missed, but still, I think the support as the results were read out was appreciated!

The guy who set up 4’33″ reading his short story.

The judges giving feedback… and a special commendation from one of the judges for Charly’s story “it was wonderful, and the ending was the best of all of them”

Charly relieved that it’s over!


Science Museum “Lates”

The Science Museum has started creating “Lates“, an evening at which only adults are present. It’s title “adults only” appears to raise a few titters, but, just think, how many times have you tried to get around a museum and not been able to see past crowds of children! It was Rachel’s birthday, so she invited us to partake in the “silent disco” last night. I’d not been to one before, so it seemed like a good idea, and a good chance to catch up with Rachel too (and as I was in London that day anyway…). The disco was hosted in the Space area of the museum, so slightly surreal. Incredibly funny as you first walk in and see people dancing around to “nothing”, but once you have your own headphones on, you kind of forget that the music’s “for your ears only”.

Rather surreal:

The headphones have a choice been up to 3 DJs (the museum had 2), and you can tell which channel others are listening to via the green, blue or red light on their headset. The real advantages were: if you don’t like the music, you can try another channel without having to go to another room; if you don’t like either – take the headphones off! Taking the headphones off can also open you up to another couple of experiences – chatting to friends at a normal level rather than yelling over the music (am I sounding old!), and listening to people singing along to the tunes:

Icebreaker Exercise: Twittering at #medialit

Heard of Twitter? People moan “about what people had for breakfast”, but Stephen Fry – it’s called Twitter, not Erudite Thoughts… and in many ways is a relationship building tool… and how often will you meet with someone (in person) and dive into e.g. The Theory of Relativity without catching up a bit first… that’s how I use Twitter!

Now. Not going ONTO Twitter itself – it’s the concept/information rather than the mechanics we’re interested in today, instead, we’re using that indispensible tool – “pen & paper”… What we produce in our version of Twitter will be available on the walls so that we can remind ourselves who people are!

So – you will get to work with 5 other people, against a timer – I have an example of mine, which I filled in in around 10 minutes! Twitter is not always about thinking in great depth about what you write, but about ‘going with the moment’. The document.

  • Username (the name you’d like to be known as this week)
  • Bio (160 characters only, what words can sum you up)
  • All tweets = 140 characters (the dashes have been counted out!)
    • #whyruhere: why are you on this course?
    • #mediaexperience: are you a newbie or lots of experience
    • #christianjourney: can you sum it up or give us one highlight?
    • #daftfact: something which will help us remember you

So, timing? We have 40 minutes for this session, and want time to look and chat at the end… so it’s “quick & dirty” thoughts as my South African friend says! Work in pairs, as the timer goes, move onto someone else – and work together.

  • Intro (above): 5 minutes. QUESTIONS?
  • Username/Bio: 10 minutes per pair
  • Tweets: 3 minutes per pair
  • Read out Bios (around 10 minutes)

http://www.online-stopwatch.com/countdown-clock/full-screen/

Place images on the wall and make available throughout the course.

Twittering @ #MediaLit: Instructions

Not getting to “The Digital Revolution” til Thursday, but those of you familiar, please do engage. Social Media for the Scared coming up as our ice-breaker!

Heard of Twitter? People moan “about what people had for breakfast”, but Stephen Fry – it’s called Twitter, not Erudite Thoughts… and in many ways is a relationship building tool… and how often will you meet with someone and dive into e.g. The Theory of Relativity without catching up a bit first… that’s how I use Twitter!

Now. Not going ONTO Twitter itself – it’s the concept/information rather than the mechanics we’re interested in today, instead, we’re using that indispensible tool – “pen & paper”… What we produce in our version of Twitter will be available on the walls so that we can remind ourselves who people are!

So – you will get to work with 5 other people, against a timer – I have an example of mine, which I filled in in around 10 minutes! Twitter is not always about thinking in great depth about what you write, but about ‘going with the moment’.

· Username (the name you’d like to be known as this week)

· Bio (160 characters only, what words can sum you up)

· All tweets = 140 characters (the dashes have been counted out!)

o #whyruhere: why are you on this course?

o #mediaexperience: are you a newbie or lots of experience

o #christianjourney: can you sum it up or give us one highlight?

o #daftfact: something which will help us remember you

So, timing? We have 40 minutes for this session, and want time to look and chat at the end… so it’s “quick & dirty” thoughts as my South African friend says! Work in pairs, as the timer goes, move onto someone else – and work together.

· Intro (above): 5 minutes. QUESTIONS?

· Username/Bio: 10 minutes

· Tweets: 3 minutes each

· Circulation Time: 10 minutes

· (Slippage time: 3 mins)

http://www.online-stopwatch.com/countdown-clock/full-screen/