Reader Request Friday’s

Last week Bottomless Coffee ran a question and answer session which was a lot of fun. He challenged those of us who asked questions to allow our readers the same opportunity – so I did! Here are the questions I was asked and my answers to them. If you asked me questions or even if you didn’t, I challenge you to do the same. I had a lot of fun with this. I think I’m going to make it a monthly event as weekly might be too much. Please check out the bloggers below too. There’s some awesome blogs right here!

Let’s start this off with

Rakkelle

1) What’s your name? (First name only).Helen. It’s a ‘Good Girl’ name. See?

Not on this list! Proof if any was needed that I’m a flippin’ angel!!

2) How many children do you have? Ages? I have three. Princess PITA 24, Fartichoke 23 and Thmellyarthe 17

3) How old are you? I’m 53

4) What made you leave England? I got married to a New Yorker! There are worse things I could do.. probably.. To be fair it wasn’t the first time I moved abroad either!

5) What year did you leave? I left 2011 just ahead of Irene for a holiday to see him. I was literally on the last flight they were allowing out of Heathrow bound for NYC until after the hurricane! It was only meant to be for three weeks but we decided to get married and then I got permission to stay while applying for a green card. The paperwork was submitted the week of Thanksgiving 2011 and I got my green card mid January 2012.

6) What do you love most about your husband? I know you can list a million things but name just one thing, the thing you love the most. I don’t quite know how to explain that one. He doesn’t try to change me. He lets me have my independence. We’re like chalk and cheese. He’s happy at home whereas I’m the adventurer. We’re complete opposites except on the important stuff. Our opinions match on how to treat others, politics, education etc. He’s become so much more adventurous with a lot of things from food to travel but he remains my safe place.

7) List your 3 best physical features? I’m always smiling (but you can never be sure what I’m plotting so don’t trust that!) My little finger on my right hand and my ears. They are hidden by my hair!

8) What is your personal fashion statement? Like a sentence that describes your personal fashion. Casual or classic, always colorful and fun.

9) List your top 5 movies? Which is the best movie you’ve seen in the cinema for 2018? This could change by dinnertime because picking just five is hard! These were chosen for fun. They’re not films that have affected me profoundly, that would have to be another list. Here goes: Mamma Mia, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Sister Act, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Hocus Pocus. I had to leave out Christmas films because they’re too hard to choose! I haven’t actually been to the cinema this year – I’ve been travelling too much I think but the film I wanted to see most was Mamma Mia 2. No surprises there I’m sure!

10) Broadway or no? If so? Favorite play you’ve seen on Broadway. I adore theatre. I love Opera and Ballet too. I’ve never been to Broadway shows but I’ve seen loads in London. I think right now I’d pick Starlight Express because it was so much fun – or Wicked, maybe The Mousetrap.. I have a problem choosing! I think you’re pretty much guaranteed a fabulous time at any Andrew Lloyd Webber show. Worst EVER shows are Cirque Du Soleil. I’ve seen them in London and Las Vegas. I will throw myself downstairs and break an ankle before I’ll sit through another.

11) Why are you drawn to my Blog? You’re one of my loyal followers (as I am yours). Why do you read me every week? I love your writing style and I’m interested in what you have to say. I feel like we’d be good friends if we lived closer. I imagine us having a lot of fun together and fabulous conversations. We’d probably be banned from a lot of shops for fitting room conversations!!

Bottomless Coffee

Education and your thoughts.

1. Things that you would change?

2. Things that you would keep the same? I’m answering these together just because that’s how my thoughts flowed. I’d get rid of tenure first and foremost. Nothing more damaging to education has even been done. No one should have ‘a job for life’. That inspires mediocrity not creativity and our kids deserve better. Educate all kids at all levels so they all leave school with basic skills. Stop the no child left behind crap and separate kids by abilities. No one benefits by teaching future neuros and refuse collectors at the same level BUT teach them ALL that every is deserving of respect. If every child leaves school at least able to read and write, understand a budget and cook a meal they can get a job and support themselves. Lastly ban politics from the classroom. If you can’t teach without revealing political bias, get out of the classroom. My kids aren’t there to hear your opinions on politics or religion/lack of religion. Teachers are there to educate impartially not indoctrinate. If they can’t do that they’re in the wrong profession.

3. How would you try to establish a model for achievable success, based on your own lessons learned from life? First of all, define success. What do you consider success? For example, If your goal is to make a lot of money, look at high paying careers and work like hell. Also consider jobs like plumbing which may not be fancy but pay very well. Always have a plan B. If option one doesn’t pan out for you, have a back up. If you go to college on a sports scholarship study for an alternate career because injuries happen easily.

That’s one example.

Before you can decide anything else you need to choose examples of who you think has a successful life and what you think is successful about it. I can’t imagine anything worse than fame. I like my insignificance! I have my family, a nice average home, not enough pets and I’m happy. I’m content. I’m well off in the things important to me. I couldn’t be more successful because in the ways that matter to me, I have abundance.

Susan Loves Books

What type of music do you like? Honestly, pretty much everything! From classical and opera through heavy metal, rock, country, folk music, Soul, Disco, Glam Rock, Punk. There’s something from every era and style I like.

How did you wind up in NY? I married a New Yorker! It took a while because I detest snow and cold but he promised me we’d move and we’re planning a move to NC. I just need to find a job there but I need to clear up a few other things first. Hopefully before Summer next year

What is your go to meal for dinner? It depends if I’m being fancy or cooking a family meal. My family love a typical English Roast dinner, such as Roast Beef with Yorkshire Pudding, Roast potatoes, cauliflower cheese, Brussels sautéed with bacon and onion, carrots in Cointreau, Roast parsnips with a honey or maple and Parmesan glaze and my killer gravy. I’d make a Banoffee pie or cheesecake for dessert as they all love both. If I was being fancy I’d probably make Beef Wellington and make creme brûlée, tiramisu or a pavlova for dessert and serve a cheeseboard too. I love cooking, I love having people to feed.

Do you have a celebrity crush? Not on a celebrity as such but definitely on the Characters they play. I love Gibbs in NCIS and Shemar Moore in Criminal Minds. I like Gary Sinise in everything I’ve ever seen him in and the same for Colin Firth. Pierce Brosnan, Liam Neeson, Alan Rickman, Idris Elba and Mark Strong. Whether I’d like them if I met them in real life is another matter. They’re not real. What you are seeing is smoke and mirrors and it’s wise not to forget that.

Readerwitch and iScriblr

What’s the story behind your blog name and blog/user picture? I wrote about my blog name here – Why I’m Bitchin’ In The Kitchen but my pictures relate to my tagline, “because the words that fall, kicking and screaming from my mouth, need a safe place to land’ The pictures are meant to show that.

Bookstooge

1) Who was the toughest supervillain you ever defeated? Myself – or my own body. I had an issue after taking antibiotics, to simplify, my stomach lining was killed off. I stopped absorbing all nutrients and was basically starving to death while eating like a pig. I had no energy. My muscles wasted away, I couldn’t stand up without help, I couldn’t walk without arms under my armpits holding me up. Lack of calcium etc caused severe cramps so that my hands seized into claws and my feet were unbelievably painful. My face was a rictus of frozen solid expression. In spite of all this I was always determined and annoying! I spent an hour before the doctors rounds one day, clawing my fingers into positions I could flip the doctor off. I spent 12 weeks in hospital. At one point, family were told to bring my kids in to say goodbye to me. I had IV’s in each arm and both feet for in calcium, potassium, magnesium… I even had IV Copper! I was on a space age diet of some weird shit by Naso gastric tube to let my stomach recover. It has – mostly – but I still have decidedly weird reactions to some foods. I’m very proud of the fact that in spite of four IV’s attached to two poles I got up and got myself to the bathroom every time. Don’t let anyone ever tell you you can’t do anything. You can always find a way. Stay defiant!

2) Did you look good defeating them? No I looked like shit. People were asking my friends if I had cancer.

3) What was the name of your finishing move? I think that was the old one-two of pigheadedness and the fact that only the good die young!

Novus Lectio

1 How are you? I’m good thanks! I have a persistent headache and distorted vision but I’m waiting to see both an ophthalmic neurologist and a headache neurologist.

2 I heard that you have a FB, can I join? I do have Facebook but thanks to a problem with a nutcase stalker, I keep it just for family. I plan on getting on with a page for the blog so when my head is better and I do that I’ll let you know!

3 Planned anything for christmas yet? Yes! I shall have my three kids here along my son in law and new grandson with a total of four dogs and two cats – it’s going to be fun!

4 Do you like foreign music? Yes. I like hearing traditional music from Irish folk to German Oompah Pah! I like Swedish folk music, Greek bouzouki, Indian music, Peruvian pan pipes. It’s a lot of fun hearing new instruments and tunes. I’m open to all of it unless it sounds funereal!

5 Do you like surprises? Yes providing they’re nice surprises and not unexpected bills or bad news.

6 What kind of movies do you like? I like pretty much everything except gory stuff and weepers. I like comedy, scary films that aren’t gory, musicals, thrillers, historical, family films – I’m easily pleased

7 Do you wear makeup? Sometimes. I like it but only a little. Usually just blusher and lipstick. I’d love to be better at putting it on.

8 What kind of car do you have? I have a red Mini Cooper with a white roof, white wheels and white go faster stripes!

9 What’s your favourite fruit? There really isn’t a fruit I don’t like. I’m eating a lot of figs and dates at the moment. I love peaches and nectarines, apples, bananas, kiwi and all berries. I’ve never eaten dragonfruit but I want to.

10 What do you wish for Trump’s Christmas? The same as I wish for everyone else. A day of love and laughter, family and friends, good food and warmth.. and no bugger using the last of the toilet paper and not changing the roll!!

11 Do you wish you had taken another path in your life? No I don’t. Everything that has happened is a jigsaw piece in my life puzzle. I kinda like the picture it’s making now so I’m happy with the pieces that brought me here. They may not all have been pretty but the overall picture makes me happy.

The Hinoeuma

1. Where are you from? I know across the pond but, Shire? I was born in London. I went to boarding school in Hertfordshire. My family moved to East Sussex and I bought my first house in Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent. I’ve lived in Nottinghamshire too but London was where I grew up

2. Where did you meet ‘im indoors? At a convention here in the US! We met in 2005 and started dating in 2006. We commuted backwards and forwards until 2011 when we eventually got married

3. Have you and Titselina Bumsqueak done worse than “shoe a cop”? Oh yes – We’ve got up to all kinds of shenanigans. We’ve gone home from a night out in a hearse, painted ex’s willies green, scared the shit out of people and took our act international too amongst others!

4. What is your occupation…besides comedienne? I work in Human Resources. The irony of monitoring others behaviour is not lost on me!

5. Fave flower? Sweet peas. They’re fun and frilly and just make me smile to see them. I love snowdrops, bluebells, primroses and poppies too. All are wildflowers, my snobby brother says ‘peasant will out’ when I exclaim over them. He’s a twat.

6. Play any instruments? I learned piano at boarding school. My hands are tiny and I couldn’t span an octave so the evil nun, Sister Gregory used to slam the piano lid down on my hands. It may or may not have been me that put a whoopee cushion under her kneeler in the chapel. It was a long time ago.

7. Ever published anything besides this blog? Nope! Not a word although I have been interviewed by newspapers regarding the charity I worked with.

8. Any family with you here in the states or are they all still across the pond (besides kids)? No my family are all spread across England, Ireland, Holland and Australia

9. What schools have you attended? All catholic schools in both London and Hertfordshire – all of which have closed now! Ones a hotel, ones a homeless mission and ones a craft center/mental health center I believe. I also went to Brighton Uni

10. Any veterans in your family? Yes my grandad was a Major in the Pioneer Corps in Middle East during WW2. After the war, he was based in Egypt and Germany so my dad grew up in both. My dad wanted to join up but he partially lost hearing when an unexplored bomb went off near him as a child (neither he or I were to blame!)

The Eclectic Contrarian

How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop?? Life’s too short to lick a lolly. I crunch it so I can have the next one sooner!

All About Life

Toad in the hole or pumpkin pie??? Both but not on the same plate! I love toad with lots of onion gravy and pumpkin pie is delicious as a dessert. I’m a big fan of faggots and spotted dick too – calm down people! They’re bona fide traditional recipes!

Christy at Miraculous Smile

How are your mini cooper stunts coming along? Me and Mini the Minx are on a partial break. I’m struggling to drive it (stick shift) with my shoulders being knackered so I’m reduced to the automatic at least half the time, the vomit comet (beige Lincoln – how can anyone love a beige car?)

Ray Not Bradbury

How many mirrors in ur house & do u have a tv in the bed room? & if yes-no : why I have a mirror over the sink in each bathroom and one full-length mirror upstairs in one of the bedrooms. I usually use the glass door between the kitchen and dining room to check my reflection or the doors on the double oven! I only have one TV in the house. I’m not a big TV watcher. I do have another at our other house which I’ll bring up for Christmas. I’m not a fan of TV in the bedroom, I’m bad enough at sleeping without that

The Nowhere Tribune

Should men shave their chests, or be proud of their fur? I think they should do whatever makes them comfortable BUT!! Please don’t walk around the supermarket in a vest/wife beater in the summer whatever you choose!

Crushed Caramel

My question I would like an honest answer to is…

…how do you get away with it all the time? I ask myself this all the flippin’ time! Maybe it’s because I’m little, living here it might be the accent in part – I think a lot of it is just sheer disbelief that I even attempt or say half the stuff I do!

Tracey, Artistic Pension

Does anyone in your family know you blog here? They kind of know but think it’s not interesting so I let them. This is mine.

66 thoughts on “Reader Request Friday’s

      1. The RRF posts take a few hours for me to write. They make me think about stuff that I usually don’t.

        What I enjoy most is the interaction between the readers and me. I don’t know if it will catch on, but it’s worth a shot.

        I also think that it may give the reader equity and a sense of dictating the conversation.

        Anywho, good on you. Thanks for playing along.

        Liked by 2 people

  1. What a massive post! So much work, wow! That’s awesome. It was fun to read. I totally understand you about “bitching” but I’m sure I saw “britching” with “r” next to your name somewhere, so I was curious why “r” appeared. I can’t even see it right now, maybe I imagined it 😆 Thanks for the fun read!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, i love posts like this!
    Funnily enough i still couldn’t warm up to sunday roast type of foods, even after living in the UK for 11 years 😅. I was told outside London they are nicer, but I don’t often leave my borders…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 1. You have the same name as my paternal GM! Plus, I just discovered that our b-days are close…I am 08-30-66. Hello fellow Virgo.

    2. Your little finger on your right hand?

    3. Love your views on education.

    4. Want to come to your house for dinner. Which leads me to, NC…mountains, Piedmont or coast?

    5. Dear GOD, I am sorry about the antibiotic mess. Damn. I had a nasty reaction to Cipro in 2001.

    6. Green willies? Were they passed out?

    7. Human Resources? You shouldn’t have trouble finding a job, here.

    8. Peasant will out?

    9. Whoa. Brighton has a lot of campuses…

    10. Where did the explosion occur?

    11. Faggots & Spotted Dicks?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 1. Was your paternal GM a lunatic or am I a Helen aberration?! I’m named after my maternal GM funnily enough. It feels like we’re doing that Kennedy/Lincoln parallel!
      2. It’s hard to find attractive bits – what can I say?
      4. You’re welcome for dinner anytime! I’m looking at the Raleigh area. Not IN Raleigh but within an hour’s drive.
      5. Always take probiotics. Lesson learned!
      6. Vegetable food dye and nether regions! Yes, passed out paralytic drunk!
      7. The hardest bit is looking for a job from 600 miles away but I’ll manage somehow.
      8.He was being shitting about my ‘common’ tastes. He’s a dreadful snob and I’m not. It makes him physically cringe when I talk to waiters and homeless people. It makes me cringe when he doesn’t.
      9. It’s absolutely enormous now. It was a polytechnic and a university so two separate education facilities but they combined and now it’s a behemoth
      10. He was in Egypt at the time
      11. Faggots are like a large meatball. That’s not a rude word in England and Spotted Dick is a dessert. The easiest way to explain it is as a steamed cake with currants and raisins that’s served warm with English style hot custard sauce. It’s delicious in spite of its name!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 1. She was a 5′ 2″ pistol. Dark, thick hair that turned nearly blonde before she went gray. She was the baby of three & I was her only granddaughter. She was only 39 when I showed up. Her b-day was 09-19. She passed in 2000.
        2. I find that hard to believe.
        4. Depending upon which side of Raleigh you choose (it’s big) we may be “hollerin'” distance. And, we get snow, too…FYI…not just hurricanes.
        6. 🤣🤣🤣
        8. That is a shame.
        10. OMG
        11. Spotted Dick sounds good…minus the raisins. Are fags still cigarettes?

        Like

      2. Yup, fags are still cigarettes! My first trip to theUS was to Dallas. You could have heard a pin drop in the bar when I said my friend had popped out to smoke a fag…
        Regardless of where I end up in the Raleigh area I’m sure we can meet up sometime! I’m a bit of a bugger for road trips! I’m going stir crazy at the moment because I’m not driving long distances until I’ve seen the neuro. I haven’t been told not to, I just think it’s wise

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Funnily enough, I was more worried about having to have a second mammogram. There’s a huge breast cancer history in my family but no ones got the brains to be at risk of a disrupted noggin! It’s not like any other headache I’ve ever had, we’ll see anyway. I see one on 12/5 and the other 12/18

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I’ve had one mammogram and that was IT…like 8 years ago. The tech struggled to get boob in machine. There’s just not enough there!

        Then, I did some research on their efficacy. I wasn’t impressed. I became more concerned about the radiation the machines put out than whether or not cancer would show up all by itself. I would hate to think I got cancer from the very damn machines that were supposed to detect & prevent. And, no breast cancer in my family…anywhere.

        I hope your noggin is OK…

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Dear Helen, 😂😂😂

    This was a fantastic read. Awesome post. Although I’m kinda mad at you for not doing justice to the three best physical features question because I know you’re just as beautiful outside as you are o the inside.

    #8 – I’m always up for colorful and fun too.

    #11 – Haha…Hear! Hear!

    I am feeling your views on education. Your logic makes a world of sense. I just wish the powers that be would implement your views.

    So we both got to New York for similar reasons, huh?!

    Your go-to meal sounds dangerously heavenly.

    The toughest supervillain story was freaking amazing. You are strength personified. Keep on fighting the good fight, Oh Britchy one, don’t let any of the physical ailments (the headaches and or the shoulders) take over. You show them who is boss!

    Does your red mini cooper really have white wheels and white stripes? I can’t tell whether or not you’re serious with this answer.

    Trump’s Christmas – Perfect answer.

    Did that witch really slam the piano lid on your tiny hands? Evil woman! I hope Karma got her later in life.

    Your RFR was truly a fantastic read. I’m sorry I took so long to get to it after being up all night last night in the airport I couldn’t do much more than sleep when I got back to NYC. I’m glad I saved this for my final WP read for the night.😊

    Goodnight Helen!😂😂😂😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s very hard to pick ‘best features’ it’s like performance reviews. I detest what feels like boasting to me, it’s just how I am.
      I won’t let anything be the boss of me! I didn’t let the abusive ex and I’m damn sure I won’t let any health issues dictate! I’m very stubborn!
      That’s EXACTLY what my little red mini looks like. I especially love the white wheels because they make it cute beyond belief! My ‘winter wheels’ – the ones with studded tires, aren’t white though and it will make me sad for the next five months until they come off again.
      Nuns can be bitches. My kids weren’t going to be taught by them after my experiences!
      Hope you slept well 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Any relation to Helen of Troy of the thousand ships fame hahaha funny I have always thought your name would be more “highlander” I dont even know what I mean by that or maybe even Britney (after the pop music sensation Britney Spears) cause she had a clip which went viral something like Its Britney B**** in this case its the Britchy one
    wow that was an interactive post how long did it take to do all the links!!!!!
    Have an awesome weekend
    ~B

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The links took over an hour! Nightmare! I’m named after my Irish Grandmother, my mums mum who was actually American! Her parents had emigrated and my grandma was born in Boston but then she went to Ireland to visit, met my Grandad and stayed! It’s a tradition in my family that the eldest daughter names her eldest daughter after her mother. So I’m named after my grandma and my daughter is named after my mum.

      Like

      1. wow thats a whole lotta generations linnked by name tradition.
        I have new found appreciation for traditions that make sure you never forget where you are from nor the roots that hold up who you are!!!
        ~B

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Brilliantly done Britchy 🙂
    I knew there was a reason , no that’s not right, l knew there were several reasons, no that sounds poncy – I know why l like you, because you are just bloody right – like the porridge in the three bears – you are just right. That ‘s what l like the most about you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happily! I peel and halve/quarter the parsnips depending on how big they are. Any bits of the parsnip smaller than a big carrot in width I leave whole.
      I don’t parboil parsnips at all. I put about half an inch of fat into a roasting tin and leave it in the oven as the oven comes up to temperature so the parsnips get put into the oil when it’s hot. Usually a combo of oil and bacon fat or beef dripping/tallow if I can get it. I put them in to the hot fat and spoon it over so they’re well coated and then roast them at 350f for about an hour turning half way through. Parsnips burn easily so keep an eye on them for the last half hour of cooking so they don’t brown too much. I’ll cover them with foil to allow them to cook through if necessary. Once they’re cooked I remove the oil and drizzle them with either honey or maple syrup and Parmesan for ten minutes then serve. You can always just keep them warm and finish them just before serving if necessary too

      Liked by 1 person

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