Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Bunny Tails Easter Activity Tutorial #BostikBloggers

The theme for our Bostik Bloggers craft challenge this month is Easter so the girls are making these lovely Easter gifts to give to friends at school. They're very easy and cheap to make :)

You will need:

Small cellophane food bags
A stick on spring flower
Decorative tape
A bunny shape cut out of card or like ours, a piece cut out of a sheet of foam
Double sided sticky pads
Felt tip pen
White mini marshmallows

Gather your supplies

Cut a piece of card the same width as your bag.
Our bags are 9cm x 13cm so I made the header 9cm x 7cm

Decorate the header with the tape, flowers and rabbit shape then write Bunny Tails on it and fold it in half

Fill the bag 3/4 full with marshmallows

Double fold the top of the bag and secure with some tape

Use 4 double sided sticky pads, one on each corner inside the header to secure the header to the bag

This is Kaycee's bunny tails bag and an Easter decoration she made with some of the other craft materials.

Ella made a little bunny family...

before making her bag of bunny tails :)

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Slimming World Dublin Coddle

Serves 4

2 Syns per serving on EE (check current syn values of sausages)


Low calorie cooking spray
2 large onions
8 back bacon rashers, visible fat removed and roughly chopped
8 Sainsbury's Be Good To Yourself Cumberland Sausages, less than 3% fat (check current syn values)
550ml boiling beef stock
650g potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180° Fan/Gas 6
  2. Spray a large frying pan with low calorie cooking spray and place over a medium heat
  3. Fry the onions for 5 minutes or until golden and beginning to soften.
  4. Add the bacon and sausages and fry got a further 5 minutes or until the sausages are browned and the onions have caramelised, adding a little stock if the pan is looking dry
  5. Spoon the sausage mixture into a large casserole dish (one that has a tight fitting lid) 
  6. Arrange the potatoes on top, slightly overlapping, to completely cover the sausage mixture
  7. Pour over the stock and push the potatoes down into the stock
  8. Season with salt and pepper, cover and bake for 45 minutes
  9. Lower the heat to 180°C/160° Fan/Gas 4
  10. Spray the potatoes with low calorie cooking spray and cook uncovered for a further 30 minutes
  11. Serve hot with your favourite vegetables

Monday, 8 February 2016

Meal Planning Monday - February 8th

All went to plan last week, apart from swapping a couple of days.
I wasn't impressed with the beef and mushroom stroganoff so won't be making it again, or if I do, I'll need to make some changes to the Slimming World recipe.

This week, I've already swapped Thursday's double bacon burgers with Sunday's sticky 5 spice gammon because the girls want the burgers and they go to their Granddad's every other Thursday and Kaycee's not keen on 5 spice gammon so it works out better.

Monday - Easy beef stew
Tuesday - Pancakes (I'll be having sweet omelette instead of pancakes as they're syn free)
Wednesday - Bacon and spinach fusilli
Thursday - Sticky 5 spice gammon with pak choi
Friday - BBQ chicken drumsticks with sweet potato wedges and coleslaw
Saturday - Slimming World Fakeaway doner kebab with a large salad
Sunday - Double bacon burgers with chips and beans

As usual, I'm linking up with Mrs. M and her #MealPlanningMonday linky :)

Sunday, 7 February 2016

February - 1 Day, 12 Pics #1day12pics

I love taking part in emmadaviesphoto 1 day, 12 pics photo project on the first Saturday of every month.
I tried to compose some shots this month instead of just documenting what I was doing on the hour, every hour! I'm quite happy with a couple of the shots :)

Ingredients for beef and mushroom stroganoff

1/12 - The ingredients for beef and mushroom stroganoff going in the slow cooker

Book and No. 1 Mum teddy bookmark

2/12 - Morning reading while the girls watch shows such as Sam and Cat, The Thundermans and others that I'm sick of seeing over and over again!

Packet of strong white bread flour

3/12 - Ant's baking bread

Lady of Hay book and a mug of coffee

4/12 - Ant took the kids to the dentist for a fluoride treatment and left me home because I had a bad back and was starting with a headache. It was a nice, peaceful hour.

Ingredients for pizza toasted sandwich

5/12 - I made ham and mushroom pizza toasted sandwiches for lunch

Fruit and yogurt

6/12 - My syn free Slimming World snack

Kaycee, baking

7/12 - Kaycee loves baking

Homemade bread being sliced

8/12 - Ant's lovely bread

Chi Chi the Shih Tzu

9/12 - We visited Nanny and Chi Chi

Ella at Asda

10/12 - We had to nip to Asda before dinner

Kaycee's chocolate cakes

11/12 - Kaycee's chocolate cakes

Beef and Mushroom stroganoff with mash, cabbage and brussels

12/12 I started with beef stroganoff and I'm ending with beef stroganoff, mashed potatoes, cabbage and Brussels

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Photo a day - Jan 30th to Feb 5th

January 30th
I woke with a cold sore :(
There were 4 options at Asda when it came to treatments; Zovirax at £4.50, some cold sore patches for £2, a Bonjela gel that was on offer at £5 a pack (I'm not sure what the full price was!) and the one in the photo that cost £1.50.
I did consider getting the patches but I've never used them before and was a bit skeptical. I bought this one because I didn't really want to spend a fiver on cold sore cream.
I'm so glad I did because this one worked great. You have to apply it every hour; it really helped with the pain and instead of having the cold sore over a week like I usually do, it was dried up by day 4 :)

January 31st
For lunch, I made Slimming World burgers with salad and a Slimming World sauce that tastes a bit like the sauce on a big mac! I'll be adding the recipe soon :)

February 1st

February 2nd
Kaycee read The Dinosaur That Pooped a Planet tonight. We went up quite late so needed a story that wasn't too long.

February 3rd
Our Bostik Bloggers craft box arrived. The girls can't wait to get stuck in :)

February 4th
Ella wanted to sing songs at bedtime tonight instead of reading so I did some Sudoku

February 5th
Another Slimming World recipe that will soon be on the blog; ham and baked bean chunky soup but I'm going to swap the ham for bacon because I think that will be delicious!

Friday, 5 February 2016

#WordOfTheWeek - Disappointment

My word of the week this week is....

I volunteer at our local charity shop, St Barnabas, working in the book department and I absolutely love working there. I've been there over a year and in that time, the book department sales have increased and I help keep it organised and running smoothly.

A job opening came up for a full-time retail position and I was really excited at the thought of actually being employed there. It's a lovely place to work with great people.
Also, being able to rely on a fixed monthly income again rather than the uncertainty of being self-employed and never knowing whether you're going to earn any money this week, was a big factor in applying for the job.

Ant was going to be the full-time parent while I worked and I just felt that this would be the best thing that could happen to our family if I got the job.

I went for an interview for a retail position in a different shop a few months ago and was told I did very well at the interview but someone got more points than I did so I didn't get the job.
I got a brain block when it came to fashion and let myself down by not being able to remember designer names.

This time, I haven't even been shortlisted for an interview and to be honest, this has upset even more than not getting the job would have because I'm not even being given the chance to try.

I've shown that I'm a hard worker, trustworthy and reliable over the past 14 months and it feels like a kick in the teeth to not even have the chance to interview for the a job that I already know how to do.

The Reading Residence

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Slimming World Slow Cooked Caribbean Pepper Pot Stew

Slimming world Caribbean pepperpot stew
Image © Slimming World

Serves 4

Syn free on extra easy


400g stewing beef, all visible fat removed and cut into chunks
2 red peppers deseeded and cut into bite-sized pieces
2 small sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
200g green beans, trimmed and halved
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp jerk seasoning
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp sweetener
400g tin chopped tomatoes
200ml beef stock
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Put all the ingredients in a slow cooker
  2. Stir well and cook on low for at least 8 hours
  3. Serve with rice


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