Roast potato omelettes are AMAZING….and other essential things I’ve learned in lockdown

It’s been a weird old time. There has been horrendous suffering and pain, there’s no denying that. But there have also been positive changes, discoveries and seemingly much more compassion floating about in the air. I hope it carries on floating as the weeks and months go on. Talking of floating, I’ve been drifting between the ‘I want to read/watch/plan/do/make/dream everything and knowing I need to soak some of the calm of this time up. I think there’s definitely a happy medium. No doubt we’re all using that bit of extra brain space thinking about what we want out of life, what’s important and what we can leave in pre-lockdown world. We also might be using some of that time to learn some completely random and seemingly useless things…. That perhaps might not have emerged otherwise.

I thought I would share a few *completely essential* things I’ve learnt in lockdown….

1. Roast Potato Omelettes are AMAZING. So much so, that it justifies the use of capital letters for Roast, Potato and Omelette. I use my Dad’s flawless roast potato recipe and have recently been making extra each week after I discovered my new holy grail recipe. I crisp them up again in a bit of butter in the pan before I add the whisked egg, perhaps throw a few slices of mushroom in there too, OBVIOUSLY add cheese (goat if you’re asking) and voila! Just a sexier version of a Spanish omelette really….

2. My dog Ted LOVES yoga. Every single time I put my mat out, he looks up at me as if to say ‘is that for me?’, trots over and takes prime position right in the middle. I don’t know whether it’s the mat, the relaxing voices on the other end of the virtual class, or just knowing I won’t be moving for the next hour (clingy pup problems)… but he absolutely loves it.

3. I love birds. The comforting sound of bird song in the morning, the gathering of robins, blue tits & goldfinches on our bird feeders, the ritual of sitting with a coffee, watching them dip and dive across the garden. I know, I’ve gone completely loopy, but it really is lovely.

4. Table football is highly addictive. We started playing evening tournaments, scratching our scores into an old piece of slate and became extremely loyal to our teams. I’m always blue. Always. The plastic goalies with no faces even have names now so we can cheer them on when the ball comes shooting towards them. You know I said I’d gone loopy? Second example.

5. Anne Tyler novels are like a warm hug, a bubble bath, a mug of hot chocolate all at once. (With a side of chopping onions.) They’re the perfect, comforting read for a time like this, although they do have a tendency to knock you sideways with a ‘dagger in the heart’ style sentence.

6. Zoom Articulate is great. We have (v originally) been having weekly games nights with our close friends and as an alternative to a quiz, I would highly recommend Articulate. Obviously both families have to have the game, but pick teams across each family and away you go. If there’s a lag in the connection though, you’ll have to shout STOP THE TIMER STOP THE TIMER…. It gets serious.

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed and I hope you all keep on keeping on….while enjoying the random learnings as well as the really important ones xx

Romy Reads : 15 Books to Take You Places

Reading is my tonic. I know I’m not the only one. There’s very few other things in life which completely transport you somewhere else; another life, another time, another place…without actually going anywhere. Not only offering an escape, but forcing you to be completely ‘in’ the pages of the book, leaving little brain space for outside chatter. Calming, restful, uplifting, all-consuming, enriching. There really is nothing like reading. At times like these, I am beyond grateful for my life-long love affair with books.

I’m going to keep writing down recommendations in the coming weeks and also posting on my @romy_reads Instagram and (NEW!) book club. Firstly I thought I would give you 15 reads to take you places….while we can’t go anywhere. Vivid landscapes, faraway countries, unknown cultures, different times…. (I also asked my equally book wormy Mum, who gave me some juicy recs too) 

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Beartown by Fredrik Backman 

The Dry by Jane Harper

Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini 

Where’d You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple

Villa America by Liza Klaussmann

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

The Wedding Officer by Anthony Capella 

The Island by Victoria Hislop

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

The Help by Kathryn Stockett 

Dominicana by Angie Cruz (currently reading & I’m loving it so far) 

I hope you find a few you like amongst that list and I also hope you manage to find some calm and joy by letting your mind go to another place for a little while. Thanks for reading, stay safe & sane x