Help Musicians…. V. Expensive Bird Nuts….There Have Always Been Migrants…..Pasta Day Post-script

by Bernie Bell - 09:49 on 17 October 2022

Help Musicians….

Help Musicians is an organization which…helps musicians….. https://www.helpmusicians.org.uk/

I don’t remember how many years ago friend Angela first sent us a Jackie Morris ‘Help Musicians’ card for Christmas. I had never come across the work of Jackie Morris https://www.jackiemorris.co.uk/  and am now a firm – maybe fan isn’t the right word – maybe follower is nearer, as Jackie is one of the few people whose work I follow by looking at her Twitter page.

Angela’s card also introduced us to the charity and since then, every year, we order Christmas cards from them – always the one by Jackie, and sometimes others too! 

This years are now available…..  https://www.helpmusicians.org.uk/get-involved/christmas-cards  and ours have arrived…….I like to see it as Iorek Byrnison leading the way… https://www.goodreads.com/characters/1156-iorek-byrnison


V. Expensive Bird Nuts….

We have a peanut feeder for the birds which we fill with more or less nuts depending on the time of year and how much they are eating.  At this time of year we also start to put out grain on the ground for the ground/grain feeders.  We went to the local garden centre to get a big bag of grain and thought we’d stock up on peanuts while we were there. 

A sack of peanuts has gone up to £39.99 for a 12.75 kg sack !!!  We were a bit stunned, but we bought one anyway as the birds now expect to find food in our garden, and we buy local when we can.  It’s also important to buy good quality nuts as some can actually be harmful to the birds… https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/advice/how-you-can-help-birds/feeding-birds/how-to-feed-birds/

I wondered why the price had gone up so much, so I Googled to find out and couldn’t find much helpful information.   It looks like various factors have come into play and that’s just how it is.

We will  keep on getting peanuts for the birds - maybe just put them in the feeder and not throw them about as we usually do during the winter months.  But….I was thinking of the people who love to feed the birds who might not be able to afford to do so.  People on restricted incomes, possibly with restricted movement, who like to put out nuts for the birds and watch them from their windows.

There were lots of peanuts available in the Garden Centre – from big sacks down to feeders ready stocked with them – so why so expensive all of a sudden?

I don’t have an answer for this – it just seems like everything is costing more though there isn’t an actual shortage – energy bills come to mind.


There Have Always Been Migrants….



A Pasta Day Post-script….

I didn’t know that it’s Pasta Day……. https://theorkneynews.scot/2022/10/17/life-is-a-minestrone-pastaday/

Here’s another one – quick, easy, tasty and cosy for a dreich day….

Greek Beef & Pasta Bake

About ½ a pkt of Quorn mince

1 clove of garlic, chopped

A few mushrooms, chopped

4 black and 4 green olives, halved

Olive oil for frying

¼ pint  of stock made with 1 veg stock cube

½ jar or carton of Passata

½ tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground cumin

½  tsp dried Oregano

Salt & freshly ground pepper

About 1/3 of a  pkt of macaroni or other pasta shapes.

A little bit of grated cheese.


Heat the oven to 180° C.

Cook the macaroni.

Peel & chop the garlic and mushrooms.  Heat the olive oil in a pan and fry them in it.

Crumble the stock cube into ¼ pint of water and pour this over the fried veg. then add the passata, Quorn mince, olives and herbs and spices.

Check the seasoning and add salt & pepper if wanted.

Drain the cooked pasta, add to mixture and stir well. Then put the whole lot into a greased oven dish, top with cheese and bake for about 20/25 minutes until cheese is melted and golden.



Here’s one I made earlier….. https://theorkneynews.scot/2018/12/30/up-brinkies-brae-on-a-weathery-sort-of-day/


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