Friday, 28 November 2014

Word of the Week - 28th November 2014

This weeks word of the week has to be...


I know I am a month early but we will be having a Christmassy weekend as we are visiting Center Parcs Sherwood Forest Resort as part of the Family Bloggers Club.

When I found out that I had been chosen to blog about Center Parcs I knew that their Winter Wonderland would be a great way to start the festive season.

We have made the visit into a family holiday and have my parents and mother in law coming along to experience it with us. We have got all of our meals booked, a visit to Santa booked, bike hire arranged and even a twilight spa for the hubby and I. As you can imagine we are all excited for the weekend.

That is why I have chosen Christmas to be my Word of the Week.

As always I am sharing my Word of the Week with the lovely Jocelyn from The Reading Residence.
The Reading Residence

Thursday, 27 November 2014

How Does Your Garden Grow? - Week 47

This weeks pictures are a stark contrast to last weeks flowers and colour.

This week we have seen a hard frost which the flowers did not like but it gave the garden a lovely wintery look. So bright and early I went out with my camera and took some frosty pictures.

Since the one frost it has warmed up a little bit so hopefully the flowers will keep going strong.

Here is how our frosty garden has grown this week...


As always I am sharing with the lovely Annie from Mammasaurus - How Does Your Garden Grow?.

How Does Your Garden Grow

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Free From Fruit Crumble - Family Favourites

Fruit crumble has got to be a family favourite in our house. However as you will no doubt know we are not currently eating gluten, wheat, dairy or sugar so therefore the traditional crumble has gone out of the window.

However when I recently received a Food Discovery Box to review it contained a bag of Chiltern Natural Foods Apple and Cinnamon Crunch which is a wheat free, sugar free and salt free granola. This delicious granola contains chunks of freeze dried apples, cinnamon and raisins. As soon as I saw that it was wheat free I knew that it would be a great substitute for a traditional crumble topping.

Here is this weeks Family Favourite recipe...

Free From Fruit Crumble

Ingredients - Serves 4

6 bramley apples (750g - 800g), peeled and chopped
100g dried cranberries
150g dried mixed fruit with candied peel
2tsp mixed spice
Chiltern Natural Foods Apple and Cinnamon Crunch


1 - Place the chopped apples, cranberries, dried fruit, mixed spice and 1tbsp of water in a pan and heat over a medium heat for 10 minutes or until the apple has started to break down but chunks still remain.

2 - Remove from the heat and rest for 5 minutes allowing the juices to combine together.

3 - Divide the fruit into 4 individual serving dishes and sprinkle over the apple and cinnamon crunch, then serve.

This desert is a healthy way to enjoy a dessert. It can be served as it is, with either regular custard or dairy free custard or even cream.

However you decide to eat it you can do so without too much guilt!

Enjoy x

I am sharing this week Family Favourites recipe with A Mummy Too - Recipe of the Week.

Link up your recipe of the week

Wallcreate Canvas Review

Wallcreate are an online company who specialise in printing high quality canvas prints at affordable prices. Wallcreate have been trading since 2001 and have maintained a 100% positive feedback for over 10 years.

Wallcreate approached me to review their services and I was delighted to. Over the last year I have found that I love photography. I have a particular love of photographing gardens, flowers and nature. Over the past year I have often wondered what some of my pictures would look like on canvas. The opportunity to work with Wallcreate gave me the perfect chance to see.

The print that I selected is one that I took at the Gardeners World Live show. It is one of my favourite shots so the canvas really did need to live up to my expectations. The shot has contrasting colours and contains a lot of intricate detail.

This is the shot which I chose to have made into a canvas...

I sent the emailed my picture to Wallcreate and was amazed when my canvas arrived just a few days later. I nervously opened the package. I was nervous because this is a favourite shot and I wanted it to be just right. When I opened the package and saw my picture on canvas I was amazed by the high quality. None of the details have been lost in the transfer to canvas and if anything the colours appear to be sharper. I am over the moon with the quality, the time it took to print and deliver and my whole experience of working with Wallcreate. I will certainly be using them again for any canvas prints for the house or for gifts.

Here is the finished canvas...

Wallcreate are giving Hijacked By Twins readers the chance to win their own print on canvas. To be in the chance to win a canvas from Wallcreate simply complete the Rafflecopter below.

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Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Point + Shoot - An Autumn Walk

This weeks Point + Shoot post is from a lovely autumn walk that we had at our favourite place to visit, Normanby Hall. We love seeing the changes in the gardens that the seasons bring.

Ice creams have been replaced by chocolate lollies, flowers have been replaced by fallen leaves and beds that were full of vegetables are now empty.

This is how Normanby Hall looked on a cold Novembers day.

As always I am sharing my post with two lovely ladies Em from Snowing Indoors and Aby from You Baby Me Mummy


Mediterranean Meatballs

We all love meatballs, but I do not like the pre made meatballs. I always worry about added ingredients and even more so now that I am watching what we eat.

These easy homemade meatballs are a great way to know exactly what goes into them. They are so simple and quick to make and no doubt healthier than shop bought ones.

This is what I do...

Mediterranean Meatballs

Ingredients - Serves 4

400g lean steak mince meat
2 red onions, one finely chopped and one cut into chunks
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 yellow pepper, cut into chunks
1 red pepper, cut into chunks
1 orange pepper, cut into chunks
2 courgettes, quartered and sliced
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
Cayenne pepper
Brown rice to serve


1 - Pre heat the oven to 200C

2 - Place the mince, finely chopped red onion, crushed garlic, 1tsp oregano and 1/4tsp cayenne pepper into a mixing bowl and combine all of the ingredients together using your hands.

3 - Once all of the ingredients are combined shape into individual meatballs.

4 - Place the chopped vegetables into a deep roasting tin.

5 - Add the meatballs to the tin and place in the centre of the pre heated oven and cook for 25 - 30 minutes or until the meatballs are thoroughly cooked.

These meatballs and roasted Mediterranean vegetables go perfectly with brown rice.

If you are following the Slimming World diet this is a syn free meal! Also if you are following the Juice Plus this meal is only using allowed foods.

Enjoy x

I am sharing my recipe with Honest Mum - Tasty Tuesdays.

Tasty Tuesdays on

Monday, 24 November 2014

Weight Loss Journey - Week 3

I have now completed two weeks of Juice Plus and I am still enjoying them. However, this week I have missed food. I will admit to not eating as well as I did in the first two weeks. Over the weekend I did have gluten/wheat free chocolate cake, gin and red wine. I have also found that I have wanted something savoury instead of fruit shakes for breakfast and lunch.

But apart from the naughty weekend treats I have got on well and have l lost another 2lbs, which makes a total of 11lbs in 3 weeks. I was disappointed with only loosing 2lbs, but it is only my fault for giving into treats.

However, something which has made my day is this picture...

This morning I put on the last pair of jeans that I bought. They used to be a good fit, maybe even a little bit snug. But look at them now! I could pull them up and down without undoing them and they are huge on me.

So even if I only loose 2lbs a week that's ok as I am seeing and feeling the difference already.

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 24th November 2014

Last week's meal plan was a successful one. All meals were made except for the leftover meal as the meat was so delicious, there was no leftovers!

This week I am only planning 4 meals as on Friday we are going to Center Parcs Sherwood Forest as part of the Center Parcs Family Bloggers Club. This is a trip that we have all been looking forward to since finding out that I had won a place as a blogger back in July! I cannot wait to report back on our weekend.

Here is what we will be enjoying this week...

Week Commencing 24th November 2014

Pork Medallions with Butternut Squash Risotto

Recently I have been making a healthy version of risotto, a meal which we love. On Monday I will be serving it with pork medallions.

Venison Stir Fry

This week I am trying a new supplier of organic meat and have bought some stir fry venison steak. On Tuesday I will be using it to make a stir fry with mushrooms and crunchy vegetables.

Minted Lamb Steaks

I love lamb but we simply do not have it enough so this week we will be having Minted Lamb Steaks served with sweet potatoes, normal potatoes for the children, and salad.

Beef Stew

Stew is a great way to use up any left over vegetables before we go away so on Thursday I will be making a beef stew. I am not sure if I can make gluten free dumplings but I am going to look into it.

Hope you have a good week!

As always I am sharing my Weekly Meal Plan with At Home With Mrs M - Meal Planning Monday.

mpm different fonts.png

Sunday, 23 November 2014

17th November - 23rd November 2014 - One Picture Everyday For One Year

This week has really been quite uneventful as we have spent the majority of the week in waiting for various deliveries. However, having a lot of time in has meant that I have caught up on house jobs, which is boring but essential.

Here is our week in pictures...

Monday 17th November 2014

It's an easy twin life! While I was busy cleaning around upstairs Isabella and Taylor snuggled up watching Cbeebies. Monday was also weighing day. I was pleased that I had lost another 4lbs, which makes 9lbs in two weeks.

Tuesday 18th November 2014

On Tuesday Joseph was at an after school class and it was only when we picked him up I realised that I had not taken a single picture. This was of the three of them waiting to get in. Recently they have looked forward to Joseph getting home to play. Here Taylor was holding Joseph's hand and had run up to him and given  him a big hug.

Wednesday 19th November 2014

I am a huge Foo Fighters fan and was awaiting Wednesday's pre sale ticket sale all week. The morning finally came and I was so nervous as I waited to get through to buy tickets. Thankfully I go through and we are now the proud owners of Foo Fighters Hospitality ticket for June next year at Edinburgh! I am so excited. We decided to get seats this time and go for the hospitality package as we will have a few more luxuries than when we last saw them at Milton Keynes. At their 2011 show we were right at the front bar and we could not get better than that. Having hospitality tickets allows us entry to a suite with a bar for food and drinks and toilets which is definitely a luxury at a rock concert!

Thursday 20th November 2014

Thursday was a play and movie day. We coloured, sorted toys and watched Frozen over and over again!

Friday 21st November 2014

Again Friday was very much dominated by Frozen. It went on at least three times! We now have Frozen mad twins!

Saturday 22nd November 2014

Saturday morning we went out shopping. The hubby needed to pick up a few bits from BandQ where Joseph entertained us with his antics! We also found that we had some vouchers left over from Christmas shopping so we treated the children with them. Joseph got a new Skylander, Isabella chose her first doll (yes I am delighted she likes dolls!) an Ariel Princess doll and Taylor chose a rubbish truck. The twins are changing so much at the moment. I find that they way they play together and the way they interact has changed. They play a lot of role play together and it is lovely to see.

Sunday 23rd November 2014

This weeks Silent Sunday is of this blossom that I noticed on a tree. Blossom in November? I was so surprised to see it and that is why I have chosen it as my Silent Sunday.

As always I am sharing our week in pictures with

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

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