I Love Not Camping - Day One

Not Camping is what I do when my husband and offspring go camping with my sister-in-law and her offspring. They have been doing this for nine years now. There is much about camping which appeals to me; sitting around a campfire with a glass of wine, looking up at the stars, cooking  bacon and eggs on a campfire, the peace, the break from modern life. I get it. The deal breaker is having to traipse across a field in wellies, in the dark to go to the loo. No thanks.

So rather than sitting at home feeling resentful about missing out on a holiday I didn't want to go on I decided to make Not Camping a holiday for me. I clean the bathroom thoroughly, I tidy up, I pick some flowers, I open a bottle, and I cook myself delicious things to eat. I love it.







Yesterday evening I suddenly felt that I had spent most of the day sitting on the sofa watching the Commonwealth Games and doing little else, so I made a list of everything I had done and was quite surprised to find how busy I had been.

~ Washed two loads of laundry
~ Hoovered downstairs
~ Emptied bins
~ Made a picnic for the campers to take with them
~ Took Tom into town
~ Washed the kitchen floor
~ Washed the shower curtain and bathmat
~ Cleaned the bathroom. My low effort way of cleaning the bathroom is to spray bath, sink and loo with cleaning products and to  leave it for a few hours until I have my shower in the evening. Then I take the opportunity of being alone in the house to finish the cleaning in the nude. Much the best way.
~ Picked a bunch of lavender. I wore clothes for this, my lavender is in my front garden after all.
~ Made myself a lunch of paté (not homemade), crusty bread and cherries.
~ Made Tom a batch of white chocolate and apricot rice krispie squares
~ Made some coffee ice cream.
~ Wandered around my garden enjoying the sunshine, the quiet and taking a few photos.
~ Marinated some chicken in lemon juice, olive oil, black peppercorn, oregano and garlic.
~ Watched the Commonwealth Games
~ Made a tomato and olive salsa by dicing a couple of tomatoes, a handful of black olives and little red onion and mixing it with a spoonful of capers, some olive oil, a splash of vinegar and salt.
~ Poured myself a kir.
~ Grilled my chicken, setting the smoke alarm off in the process.
~ Ate the chicken with green leaves and tomato and olive salsa.
~ Whipped some cream (leftover from ice cream making), sandwiched two meringues (leftover from last weekend) with the cream, added raspberries and a drizzle of cassis.
~ Ate it all whilst watching Sherlock. I'm having a Sherlockfest this week and will watch all nine episodes.
~ Drank some white wine.
~  Went to bed and read some of Persuasion.
~ Couldn't get to sleep for ages because it was so hot.

Today I have a lot less to do. There's no laundry, no cleaning or hoovering. I have a bit of ironing to do and Tom to pick up later but other than that all I have to think about is my supper -salt and pepper squid, green bean salad and coffee ice cream.


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Comments

  1. Sounds wonderful to me - I don't mind what I do all day but I do like a comfy proper bed to sleep in at night so if I were in your shoes I too would take a Not Camping break. I must try that idea of writing down what I have done since I always feel I have been faffing about not achieving much maybe I'd find I do more than I think! Enjoy your me-time holiday.

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  2. I love to read your Not Camping as well. It does sound better than campling.

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  3. What a great - if busy! - start to not camping. I hope that today is fun too! xx

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  4. Sounds lovely - and I'm with you on the camping! I made some lavender meringues the other day - macaroon-sized, as they are very perfumey - wish I'd tried it with roses earlier in the summer.

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  5. I am having a Not Sailing holiday at home alone. My first whole week alone, and so far, so good. I thought of your Not Camping week when I realised that I would be having a Not Sailing week, and it encouraged me to be positive about it. Good books, good food fresh from my garden, and the place will be as tidy as I make it - if a little too empty. Thanks xx

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  6. What's saving me from a hot and humid sleepless night is freezer blogs - you know the blue things you use for picnics and sandwich boxes - the small ones slipped into a sock then taken to bed and placed on hot spots - forehead, back of neck ( this is very easy with the sock - try it you will see) chest, etc...today at a local bric-a-brac sale I picked up 2 large - they may get wrapped in a pair of pants so I can cuddle hot water bottle style...it really does help.

    A glass of Kir... thinking of nothing else until I procure the ingredients to make one;-)

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    1. What a good idea, if only the campers hadn't taken all the freezer blocks with them! Fortunately it is cooler today.

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  7. When you start running not-camping holidays, I'm booking in!!

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  8. What a lot of jobs you did on your first not camping day, I hope the rest of your break is more restful

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    1. But I didn't feel as if I'd done anything much. None of it strenuous I assure you.

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  9. Not camping sounds great fun! I look forward to reading more.

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  10. Sue, your week is off to a great start, as you let yourself go with the flow.

    Of course, the menus sound wonderful, and that chicken/salsa photo defines delicious.

    xo

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  11. Not Camping sounds brilliant. I love the idea of finishing the cleaning in the nude. I used to know a lady who did all hers in the nuddy; she always said why should she mess up her clothes just to wash them afterwards? Enjoy the rest of your Not Camping!

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  12. Yes, I quite like a Not Camping Holiday sometimes. I had two weeks over the past 10 years and remember every day fondly. Having said that, I do love camping, too. Even the walk to the loo in the middle of the night. We have just returned to Glasgow and it is Commonwealth Games all around us. The kids have tickets to a several events (provided by schools and Scouts) but I prefer to watch from the comfort of my sofa. Enjoy the rest of your holiday!

    P.S. Funny, I clean my bathroom in the nude, so much easier to get the shower cubicle scrubbed :)

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  13. I clean the shower the same way. Enjoy your quiet day, it sounds perfect to me.

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  14. I often spend Sunday evening to Saturday morning on my own, week after week, and (quietly) I love it. For some reason I have developed the habit during these weeks of taking Tuesdays as a day off! No housework, easy meals, no feeling that I should be doing something. I'm not sure how I'm going to cope when husband retires and is here full time!

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  15. of all those things it is the Sherlock fest I am most envious of!

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  16. "Cleaned the bathroom. My low effort way of cleaning the bathroom is to spray bath, sink and loo with cleaning products and to leave it for a few hours until I have my shower in the evening. Then I take the opportunity of being alone in the house to finish the cleaning in the nude. Much the best way."

    I do that too!!!!

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  17. I like the idea of a not camping holiday too... And used to do just that when my lads were young. Not sure I used to spend it cleaning though!

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    1. Oh there won't be any more cleaning. I like to start off with a bit of a clean and then enjoy a house that doesn't immediately get dirty again.

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  18. This is my favourite week of your blog!

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  19. I am going to be non camping for four days, as someone has to stay look after the cats (is my excuse) from this coming Thursday. After reading your blog (all of it from front to back) and being much entertained by your previous not camping posts, I am really looking forward to making my little break an adventure.
    Sue, your menus are so inspiring, I often drop into The Quince Tree when I can't think of what to cook. I don't know how I managed previously without you.
    I don't usually comment but always appreciate your well written posts and beautiful photography and the thing I like most, your humour.

    Have a wonderful week with Sherlock. Do you like the old one, Jeremy Brett one too?

    Best wishes

    Cicely

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    1. Cicely, thank you and well done for reading the whole blog -wow!. I do like the Jeremy Brett Sherlock as well as the fab new Cumberbatch one. I must reacquaint myself with them. I hope you enjoy your not camping as much as I enjoy mine.

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  20. I'm amazed there are so many of us who clean our bathrooms in the nude. It just makes sense when the bathroom is all steamy after one's shower.

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    1. I knew I couldn't be the only one.

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  21. I am green with envy. I would love twenty four hours to myself!!! The idea of watching the games and eating and drinking lush food...... I also clean the bathroom nude. Why wouldn't you?
    Leanne xx

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  22. Anonymous10:02 pm BST

    Hi Sue, so pleased to see your No Camping posts appear again this year!!!!!! Enjoy. Sheridan

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  23. You do it so well. Enjoy!

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  24. Anonymous11:48 pm BST

    I like camping, too, but I get the part about the loo. I hate waking up early and realizing I can't just lie there and wake up slowly, nor stagger into the loo in pajamas, but have to dress first. Quickly, as I'd never venture out in the dark if I could help it. I remember bravely letting my son venture forth after dark before he went to bed, just old enough to manage on his own. He came back quickly, telling us that others had warned him that there were skunks about on the trails.
    Glad you garden dressed.

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  25. Your family's version of camping sounds interesting. I do not enjoy camping in hot weather, or cold weather, or wet weather, but under certain conditions it is great. I think you simply have to have the right location. And time of year.
    Spend hours packing the car. Drive for six hours along a selection of dirt tracks with rocks and pot holes. Arrive at preferred site. Decide it is too crowded. Drive around like fool and end up back at original site. Set up, taking far too long. Boil billy. Start hating washing up. Swim. Walk. Swim. Gossip. Swim. Walk. Read. Cook meal. Swim / bath. Attempt to clean teeth and end up with messy feet. Gossip. Continue hating washing the pots and pans. Every time you go for water at the billabong you worry about crocs. And dead animals contaminating the water you are drinking. Try to heat marshmallows on sticks. Burn tongue. Walk with shovel to trees for evening dunny visit. Ground is ridiculously hard. Next morning find that another camper within sight has actually fired up their generator and is watching a DVD. Wonder if they also shoot things. Walk and swim to get rid of anger. Identify plants, birds, snakes, and lizards from reliable books. Convince self that buffaloes do not use this billabong at this time of year. Continue in this manner until the ice runs out completely, the insect bites and scratches are completely swollen, and you are totally bored. Attempt to pack car but find that it does not fit as well as before.
    Spend days washing and cleaning and lying through your teeth about the wonderful time the family had.
    Not camping sounds almost a joy. Do you still have to clean the car, tent, stove, shoes, hats, tools, and everything else? Or does the family actually do that part themselves?

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  26. I think you should live it up and pick lavender in the nude anyway.

    Also, will there be the obligatory re-watching of North and South this week?

    (I'm with Toffeeapple. Not Camping Week is always my favorite, too.)

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  27. Love it! If I'm not mistaken we have those glsses and they're quite large... I may have to try your bathroom-cleaning method. It's one of my least favourite chores and I like the sound of your almost-Paganistic approach!
    I'm so very envious of your holiday at home. While the camp fire blazes someone has to keep the home fires burning too.
    Enjoy. I'm looking forward to the next instalment.
    S

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  28. Agree with you about camping. Doing a list at the end of the day listing jobs done, far better than making list of things to do at the start of the day, they never seem to get done!
    Julie

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  29. Yay, it's my fave!! No Camping time again :) Have caught up on your other posts Sue & will be tuning in daily for these. Sad how much I enjoy your 'holiday' isn't it! xx

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  30. This is fabulous - you have uncovered a nugget of consumer behaviour I bet the household cleaning manufacturers have never discovered despite spending millions in market research - we clean bathrooms naked! Can you imagine what the adverts would look like if they knew...

    Have a brilliant week.

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  31. I also do at least some of the bathroom cleaning in the nude while in the shower! I love your "I love not camping" posts!

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  32. Your blogs are as camp as custard and I just love 'em!

    LLX

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  33. What? You didn't pick lavender in the nude? How disappointing... ;-)

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  34. Hurrah! I'm with Pipany and been w ordering when your Not Camping Week was coming up. Ace. Love the chicken and salsa dish. I may cook that and follow your house cleaning tips too although I may terrify the neighbours :) have a great week on your holiday at home x

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  35. I love your not camping posts! It all sounds so idyllic. Much better than eating burnt sausages from a throwaway BBQ :-)

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