Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Thursday Thoughts # 49

Two quotes from "The First Third" by Will Kostakis

"We'd been friends long enough to catch each others bad habits. We weren't the exact same person, he was three times four and I was two times six. We both equalled twelve; we were just made of different parts."

"Mum had peppered framed photographs throughout the house. Visitors could trace my evolution from a dimple-cheeked, big-eared young boy with wild, curly hair and a gap between his front teeth big enough to slot a two-dollar coin through, to a dimple-cheeked, big-eared young man with wild, curly hair and an excellent orthodontist."

I found this book in the teen section of my local library, read the blurb on the back and knew I had to read the rest of the story. It took me two days; I almost could not put it down.

Set in Sydney, Australia, it's about a young Greek boy, almost a man at seventeen, whose yiayia, (grandmother) falls ill and requires an operation. When he visits her in hospital, she hands him her 'bucket list'. 
It has only three items on it, but they aren't three things she would like to do before she dies. They are three things she would like Bill to do to bring the family back together. Yiayia would like Bill to become the glue that holds them all together. 
A big ask for a young man not yet old enough to vote.

The beginning of the book is funny, I laughed on every page. The rest of the book has funny moments, quite a lot of them, but the undercurrent is emotional as Bill finds out things about his brothers that he hadn't known; he also finds out that his father, living in Melbourne, has a new, younger family.
I would happily recommend this book to anybody, teen or adult. 

The First Third by Will Kostakis

Today's thoughts:

Polar fleece fabric.
Zipped jumpers, sleeveless vests, hoodies made from polar fleece were very popular when they first arrived on the market. Available in several styles and colours, they were comfortably easy to wear and I loved them. 
I had one jumper and two sleeveless vests.
I soon discovered the flaw in this wonderfully thick and warm polar fleece fabric. 
It is a lint magnet! A fluff magnet!! A hair magnet!
Without brushing it down extremely thoroughly after each wearing, it soon looks as if you let the pets sleep on it. 
When I got AngelBoy, I had to remember to put it away properly after I'd worn any of the polar fleece items I had. 
If I forgot and laid it on a chair, it would be covered in cat hair in no time. 
Angel didn't even have to lie on it, the hair would just gravitate to the polar fleece. 

Way back in days of yore, aka before I moved here, I would leave work and pass by Uncle Albert's bakery cafe on my way home. Sometimes I would stop in and buy a slice of their apricot/almond tart and take it home for afternoon tea. 

Just lately, I'd been thinking about that yummy tart, but didn't want to go all the way to Norwood just for a slice, so decided to make my own.

I bought this:

apricot pie filling, and these:

flaked almonds. they come in a packet, this is the leftovers.

I mixed the pie filling and about a third of the flaked almonds in a saucepan, added a thin paste of water and cornflour, cooked it over a medium heat until thickened, then poured the mix into two sweet pastry flans. Bought, not home made.

ta-da! apricot/almond tarts.  I let them cool, then put them in the fridge to get properly cold.

I wrapped and froze one and ate the other for dessert over four days.



  1. How could you possibly space apricot almond anything over four days. Wonder woman. I'd probably eat the filling right from the pan and have done with it.

  2. I love polarfleece! Usually, you just pop it in the dryer for a bit or run some masking tape over it between washings and it's good.

  3. The Great Scot loves apricots, I may have to give this a try.

  4. Your pie looks and sounds delicious, River...and I bet it is/was; and I bet it was much nicer than Uncle Albert's! :)

    I just love those quotes from "The First Third"...from those and your review I'm sure I'd love the book, too. Kostakis got his first publishing contract nine years ago at the tender age of 17. He's got a bright future ahead of him; a smart young fellow. How wonderful.

  5. That looks like a book I am going to HAVE to track down. Thank you. Humour and emotion belong together.
    I admire your apricot tart - but am carefully not looking closely. I swear I get fatter looking at food. And I really, really need to get less fat. Considerably less fat.

  6. The book does sound interesting. It is a while since I have read an Australian book, so that might be the next. The tart looks great.

  7. Joanne; I had a LOT of trouble stopping myself from eating the whole thing. But I have thirty pounds to lose. I've been eating smaller portions for a while now, the scale reads the same but I do feel a little difference around the ribs, so that's heartening enough to keep me trying.

    Happy Christine; I have invested in a lint roller, that helps a lot. I don't want to be running the dryer more than I have to.

    Jac; yes, give it a try. I didn't specify amounts for cornflour and water, because I never measure, I just look and think, yeah, this'll do. If it comes out too thin, I can always add more, a bit too thick is okay when you're making something that will be sliced. You want to find that happy medium. NO sugar.

    Lee; surprisingly it was nicer than Uncle Albert's. The filling was the same, but the sweet shortcrust flans I bought were so much nicer. Bought from Woolies and made with real butter, they are very yummy.
    I'm going to search for his other books at the library next time I go there.

    Elephant's Child; the book is really worth reading. I was going to email you about it, but decided this was better, so more people will know.
    The pie is so yummy, I'm giving serious thought to not making anymore for quite a while. Like I told Joanne up there^, I have thirty pounds to lose.

    Andrew; the book was in the teen section of the library, but I think it's a good read for adults as well. Conflicting emotions are handled sensitively and with a little humour.
    The tart was fabulous. Good thing the other one is frozen solid.

  8. The book sounds fascinating. Will see if our library has it.
    Those tarts look so yummy; you are so clever.

  9. Mimsie; look in the teen section for the book and others he has written. Tarts are easy to make and even easier to eat.

  10. ... I love your Tart recipe River... my hubby loves apricots .. I'll give this a go... Thanks...
    Hugs... Barb xxx

  11. Barbara; it's so very easy too.