January Diets Are Not For Me

flat lay photography of vegetable salad on plate
Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

Come January and a plethora of dietary advice hits us like an Alpine avalanche.

You know the score, you’ve overeaten for a week or more and you dread getting on the scales each morning, right?

Well, I for one don’t really believe in diets. I think you have to mindful all year round, including Christmas. Sure you can eat a bit more, but I often skip breakfast, or have something really light at that time, if I know I’ll be partaking in a feast at night. I might drink more water too.

A week or ten day’s overindulgence could take weeks to put right in terms of losing that weight you’ve rapidly put on. So I simply don’t do it. I am not perfect by any stretch, I just say no to that extra drink, I don’t get drunk and I rarely overeat – even at Christmas.

Ultimately, prevention is so much better than cure. A ‘diet’ for me is for life, not just for January.

copyright Francis Barker 2020

It’s like Marmite? ‘The Ashes’ Yeast Extract Battle for Breakfast

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The two contenders going head to head – but how different are they?

Well, I love Marmite… but I prefer Vegemite just that teeny bit more! Sorry.

For years my only love was Marmite, in the yeast extract stakes, at any rate.

And then one day, not too long ago, I decided to get some – horror of horrors – Vegemite! Naturally I’d heard the name before, even heard it in some 1980s Australian rock song, but being a bit of a traditionalist and a stick-in-the-mud, I’d never taken the plunge into that particular version of yeast extract.

What’s more, to be fittingly topical, it’s The Ashes (England versus Australia at cricket) again this summer, that battle between leather and willow, weather permitting; a tense battle of minds, of whether to sledge, or not to sledge. So what about comparing dear old Blighty’s version with the Antipodean?

Well, to settle an argument with myself, I decided to compare the two makes side by side, in one sitting, if you will. And my findings were surprising.

I’m not an expert on taste, I just know what I like. Sticking to tradition to start with, I plumped for Marmite first. Fine, lovely, just how I like it. Then came the Vegemite and… wait a minute! You know, it wasn’t the same. Did I detect, I mean was there just a little trace of a taste of… chocolate? Dark chocolate at that. OK, it was somehow different, a bit.

Either way, I sat down with a cup of tea to wash it all down and collect my thoughts. And whether I could taste chocolate or not, I came away with the startling, unpatriotic conclusion that I preferred the Australian! Yes, Vegemite won by a nose, the tip of a tongue.

I just hope that England can do better this summer.

Let’s Celebrate Lincolnshire Churches – Scothern

Every May the West Lindsey region of northern Lincolnshire opens the doors of its churches to visitors for two weekends – the West Lindsey Churches Festival.

Church of St. Germain, Scothern.

Pictured above is Scothern church, quite small but beautiful, the whole churchyard raised a few feet above the surrounding area of the village.

Once inside we had the usual very warm welcome, with residents sharing information about the church, the village, their lives in general. And of course we had to partake in the coffee and cake on offer.

What made Scothern a little unusual was the organ and piano recitals going on over the weekend.

Another interesting feature was the exhibition of childhood toys.

Childhood toy exhibition – takes you back
All this and music too?

And perhaps the greatest feature of the church is the wonderful 16th century Dutch panel painting called ‘The Adoration of the Magi’.

16th century Dutch panel painting, ‘The Adoration of the Magi’.