Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Sweetpea Pantry Review

Today I am sharing a delicious company, the Sweetpea Pantry.

Sweetpea Pantry have created some amazing baking kits. I am not usually a fan of cake and bake mixes however I did get really excited about Sweetpea Pantry mixes. You may be wondering what makes these mixes different. Sweetpea Pantry are not your regular mixes, they are 100% natural ingredients and contain superfoods!

Yes superfoods for kids!

Since we changed our diets we have been adding a lot of superfoods to our diets and I have been looking for ways to incorporate the goodness into meals and bakes that the children will also like. Sweetpea Pantry keep it simple, they only use 100% natural ingredients, cut down refined sugar and get as much goodness into each pack as possible.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Yumbox Review

We have been fans of  theYumbox since they went on the market. So when they got in touch with me and asked if I would like to review a box and host a giveaway for them I jumped at the chance!

If you do not know what a Yumbox is let me tell you...

Yumbox are lovely bento lunch boxes. The inserts that fit inside the boxes allow you to pack up a variety of foods in ideals portion sizes. The Yumbox is designed with a leak proof lid so you can pack yogurts or dips with no worries that it is going to leak into the other compartments. Therefore there is no need to use cling film or plastic bags or various different boxes. Everything can be packed in the one box. No only is this easier but will also save you money on food wraps and is also environmentally friendly as you will be reducing your waste.

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 29th June 2015

I will admit to last weeks meal plan going to pot!

I totally underestimated how tired I would be after a busy weekend in London. Unfortunately the tiredness lasted all week so at the end of the week we went for the easier option of eating out and buying meals.

This week I am feeling more myself and am back on it!

As it is such lovely weather there will definitely be a barbecue this week!

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

Saturday, 27 June 2015

22nd June - 27th June 2015 - One Picture Everyday For One Year

Since last weekend I have been exhausted and it has certainly carried on through the week.

This week has seen Joseph go on his first residential school trip, the hubby and I go to York, and the twins being their usual manic selves!

I am changing my week in pictures slightly this week. From now on I will be sharing from Sunday to Saturday. However this week it is Monday to Saturday as I have already shared last Sunday's picture.

Here is our week in pictures...

Monday 22nd June 2015

Friday, 26 June 2015

Lemon and Strawberry Sugar Free Cake

In our quest for healthier living we have been cutting out sugar. Thankfully there are natural ingredients that can be used!

I have recently discovered how substituting sugar with maple syrup can create such a delicious cake. Today I am sharing one of my latest cakes using maple syrup. I have added lemon juice to the sponge and topped with strawberries.

When baking with maple syrup you need to make sure that you use pure maple syrup as maple flavoured syrup contains sugar!

This is what I did...

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Free Little Dish Meals at Ocado!

You will know that I am a true believer in home cooked meals however there are times when life takes over and every now and then I need to reach for a pre prepared meal for the twins.

I have always been extremely wary of ready made meals. However I have always found Little Dish to be different. Their brand represents everything that I believe in. All of their meals contain only 100% natural ingredients, no added sugar and all low in salt. Every recipe is created alongside a nutritionist to ensure that they are nutritionally good for little ones and a good balanced meal.

Little Dish have their own team of Tiny Tasters to taste every meal! This time I had my own Tiny Tasters try some of their meals.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Cake is Not Just for Fathers Day!

When I received an email asking me if I would like to bake a cake for fathers day my immediate reaction was "yes of course!". But after giving it some thought I decided that I would bake the cake, but it is not a cake for fathers day, as we can treat dads to cake at any time of year.

I do like Fathers day and Mothers day but I do feel that we should show our gratitude throughout the year. It doesn't have to be fathers or mothers day for us to say thank you, I love you and to show appreciation. This can be done at any time.

I decided to bake the cakes to say thank you to my hubby. At the weekend my wonderful hubby looked after the children while I was in London at the BritMums blogging conference. I wanted to say thank you for being so supportive. You are not only a great husband but you are also a great dad! Like most men my hubby loves to have a good cake and he is certainly not alone.

Silver Mushroom

Silver Mushroom asked 750 men what their favourite treat would be. Not surprisingly over 25% of them chose cake as their favourite. They were given the choice of flapjack, brownies, biscuits, muffin and cake. A good old slice of cake was the winner! It was also the winner over all of the age categories.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 22nd June 2015

After such a busy weekend meal planning has not been high on my list, but as soon as I had to think about what I was going to cook this evening and had no idea and I remembered why I meal plan! Without my weekly meal plans in place I would have no organisation!

I will admit that this weeks meal plan has been done at the last minute. But hey ho, a meal plan has been put in place!

As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago we are changing the way we eat. So far it is going really well. Admittedly my diet was not very clean over the weekend but now I am back home I am back to it. I am a true believer in moderation and believe that it is good for us to have the odd treat,

Last week I shared the following recipes...

Now back to this weeks meal plan. This is what we will be enjoying this week...

Week Commencing 22nd June 2015

Crust Less Quiche

We have got a ridiculous amount of eggs thanks to our 3 chickens. Therefore I am making a meal where I can use a lot of them up. I will be making a crust less quiche, serving it with jacket potatoes and salad.

Tacos with Chilli con Carne

Whilst a BritMums Live I received a bag of goodies from Santa Maria Mexican foods. On Tuesday I am going to make a chilli con carne and serve with tacos, guacamole and brown rice.

Dining out!

On Wednesday I do not need to plan as the hubby and I are away so will be eating out!

Smoked Mackerel

On Thursday we will be having an easy meal of smoked mackerel with quinoa and roasted vegetables.

Courgetti Carbonara

After last weeks meal with courgette noodles I am dying to try more meals using courgetti. This week I will be making a carbonara style courgetti meal.


I am due to receive a meat box for review at the end of the week so I am planning to use something out of there for Saturday's meal.


On Sunday we will have a roast, but as of yet I am not sure what joint we will have.

Hope you have a great week.

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

mpm different fonts.png

Petits Flous Pouches - Perfect for on the Go and Summer Days Out!

Like most toddlers the twins love Petits Filous! However as busy as they are they do not always want to sit down to eat one out of a pot. This is where the new Petits Filous pouches come in! They are a perfect way for little ones to enjoy the deliciously creamy fromage frais on the go!

Photograph courtesy of Yoplait Petits Filous

Sunday, 21 June 2015

15th June - 21st June 2015 - One Picture Everyday For One Year

What a manic week! It has been so busy and has flown by!

This week has been an exciting week too. The week started off with my birthday. After my birthday the countdown to BritMums Live began. With all of the excitement there has also been a huge disappointment! The hubby and I were due to see the mighty Foo Fighters in Edinburgh next week. However after a fall, Dave Grohl broke his leg and cancelled the remaining tour dates! I was gutted to say the least. We then had the stress of trying to get some money back for the hotel room that we booked as non amendable/refundable! Thankfully the hotel was helpful and we were able to transfer the money paid onto my mother in laws stay later in the year!

Anyway this weekend will be busy with lots of pictures so I am posting this a day earlier than usual.

Here is our week in pictures...

Silent Sunday

Friday, 19 June 2015

A Healthier Bacon Butty for Fathers Day!

As it is Fathers Day on Sunday Roberts Bakery have challenge me to create a good old bacon butty as a treat for Dad.

You may have read in previous posts that we are eating healthier as a family, so a traditional fried bacon butty really is a no go! Therefore to make it a bit healthier I have used gammon as opposed to fried bacon and added some healthy extras!

This is what I did...


Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Get More from More Drinks - Review

While I was at the Blog On MOSI conference last month I tried the lovely, refreshing Get More drinks from More Drinks. When they asked me if I would like to try all of their range for a blog post I simply couldn't refuse!

I am constantly trying to drink more water and am very cautious about what flavoured drinks I drink and even more importantly what the children drink. When I spoke to the team about the More Drinks my first question was "what is the sugar content" I was delighted when they told me that all of their Get More vitamin and mineral drinks are sugar free and only use natural flavours.

The Get More drinks come in 6 flavours, each of them are tailored to give you a boost of different vitamins and minerals. Therefore you are able to select which water you need depending on how you feel.

Tuna Steak with Courgette Noodle Stir Fry - Family Favourites

I have recently bought a spiralizer. After seeing so many good reviews I decided to go ahead and get one. I have been looking forward to making vegetable noodles and spaghetti.

This week I am sharing a recipe that uses the spiralizer to make courgette noodles. They are a delicious and healthier alternative to traditional noodles.

This meal is not only extremely healthy but quick and easy to make.

Here is this weeks Family Favourites recipe...

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Slow Cooked Pork in Cider

I love the depth of flavours that cider can add to a meal. That is why I decided to use it in my slow cooked pork. Slow cooking meat allows the meat to remain moist and full of flavour. But they are also easy meals to cook as you simply place your ingredients in the slow cooker and let the cooking process develop the flavours. Slow cooked meals are perfect for those busy days!

This recipe idea came from my Slow Cooked Game in Cider recipe. We love game but it is not always available or in season. That is why I decided to transfer the flavours to a meat which is more readily available.

What better meat to combine with apple than pork. The two go hand in hand!

This is what I did...

Monday, 15 June 2015

Eisberg Alcohol Free Wine

Now that summer has finally arrived, so has the urge to have picnics and barbecues! When having outdoor meals and parties it is great to accompany the meal with a cool glass of wine. However visitors will often need to drive and if you have gone out for a picnic it is not ideal to take a bottle wine and not all being able to enjoy it due to driving and watching the children.

This is where Eisberg comes in.

Eisberg are alcohol free wines. They come in four varieties, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Rose and Riesling.

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 15th June 2015

Today is my birthday and another week to plan for!

However this week I do not have a lot to plan for. On Friday morning I head off to London for BritMums Live! That means Friday's and Saturday's meals are for the hubby to plan, but I will make some dinners up if he wants me too!

This week will be a quiet one with regards to meal planning, but a busy week with things to see and do.

Last week we started to eat healthier and make smoothies. We soon found that we loved the smoothies and went on to invest in a juicer, which I am over the moon with! When we started we were thought that we would feel hungry but are amazed by how filling the smoothies and shakes are. So far so good!

Last week I shared the following recipes...

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Silent Sunday

8th June - 14th June 2015 - One Picture Everyday For One Year

This week has seen us make a huge lifestyle change with regard to our diets. We both already eat a lot of gluten free foods like bread and crackers, the hubby's is due to an intolerance whereas mine is a lifestyle choice as I feel better not eating gluten (except for in cakes!). We have now decided to start clean eating. We are cutting out processed foods and even sugar. We have started to have smoothies and have even invested in a juicer. We have both noticed a big change in how we feel. So far so good!

The children have had a busy week at school and the twins have even been on their first trip! The puppies have both have their operations to be neutered. So they have been felling sorry for themselves.

Here is our week in pictures...

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Almond Cake with a Cashew and Almond Praline Topping

This delicious cake was inspired by a Toscakaka a cake that I wrote about during the Great Bloggers Bake Off. The original idea came from the fantastic Scandilicious Baking by Signe Johansen. This book is full from cover to back of divine cakes and bakes!

As soon as we tried the Toscakaka we all fell in love with it!

In this cake I have adapted the cake more to our tastes. I have baked a different sponge to last time and have used cashews in the topping which give the cake such fantastic flavours.

This is what I did...

Friday, 12 June 2015

Swizzels Matlow Squashies

Who doesn't love a good sweet?

Sweets will no doubt be part of fond childhood memories. From going to the shop to buy sweets with pocket money to sharing a bag with school friends. Sweets are not just a delicious treat, but they also create memories.

Swizzels Matlow are running a campaign called Sweet Memories. Where you can win a weekly prize of a hamper full of Swizzels Matlow sweets. All you need to do is upload either a picture or a story (500 words) about your sweet memory.

My sweet memory is of visiting my Grandads newsagents or sweet shop as I used to call it. I remember being so excited to visit him in the sweet shop because not only did I get to see my beloved Grandad but I would also leave with a big bag of sweets. The amount of sweets that were in the shop always seemed to be huge! I remember shelves of sweets in jars that would run along the entire back wall. The jars were full of different colours, flavours, textures and delights. Then I remember there being rows and rows of chocolate bars and other sweets in front of the long counter. It really was a dream for any child to visit and have free run of!

A 'Berry' Good Start Smoothie

This week we have made a huge lifestyle change. We have decided to cut out processed foods and fill our plates and tummies with fresh, organic fruit and vegetables. Our breakfasts have been transformed from sweet cereals to deliciously nutritious smoothies. As well as cutting out processed foods we are also trying to cut sugar out of our diets too and using healthier substitutions.

Today I thought I would share a delicious smoothie that I have been enjoying. We have found that having a smoothie for breakfast has been keeping us going until after lunch time! They are so filling and you know that they are giving you so many health benefits in just one glass.

This smoothie uses...

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Smile Power Day

15th June is not only a special day because it is my birthday, but it is also Smile Power Day!

A smile has so much power without us actually realising it. Giving a smile can change someones day, a smile can show someone you care, a smile can even make you feel better. A smile can encourage, a smile can comfort and a smile can fill you with happiness.

What is there not to love about a smile?

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Spanish Chicken Tray Bake - Family Favourites

We all love chicken and Mediterranean inspired flavours. That is how this meal was created. I wanted to create more of a summer recipe using chicken. This dish is perfect for a summers evening eating in the garden.

Chicken is always a winning meal in our house. But not only does everybody enjoy it but it is also low in fat which make me even happier!

This is what I did...

Spanish Chicken Tray Bake


12 chicken thighs
1 large courgette, thickly sliced
12 shallots, halved
1 red pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
250g mushrooms, quartered
200g cooking chorizo, cut into chunky pieces
Yellow and red tomatoes on the vine
Smoked paprika
Sea salt
2 tbsp olive oil


1 - Pre heat the oven to 180C

2 - Lay the courgette, shallots, red pepper and yellow pepper in a deep roasting tray

3 - Add the chorizo and lay the chicken thighs on the top

4 - Sprinkle smoked paprika and sea salt over each chicken piece according to taste

5 - Drizzle over the olive oil and place in the centre of the pre heated oven and cook for 40 minutes

6 - After 40 minutes remove the tray, baste the chicken in the delicious smoked paprika oils from the chorizo and add the mushrooms

7 - Return to the oven and cook for a further 15 minutes, add the tomatoes still on the vine and cook for 5 more minutes

8 - Before removing from the oven check that the juice run free of blood from the chicken, if they need a little longer keep checking every 5 minutes

Serve with new potatoes

The chorizo adds such a depth of flavour to this dish, it complements the chicken and vegetables perfectly.

Enjoy x

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Cheese and Onion Quiche - Perfect for the Picnic Season!

Summer is on it's way! Which means picnic and eating al fresco time is coming!

I love being able to prepare food to eat outside. Whether it is a barbecue or a picnic, as soon as the sun is out so are we!

This week I am sharing with you a super easy cheese and onion quiche. Quiche is a perfect summer pie. It is ideal to pack up for a picnic or to serve along side some salad and barbecue meats or fish.

As well has having delicious food for a picnic you need those all important picnic essentials. From tableware to hampers to drinks chillers to the blanket. Having a picnic to impress can be had with these beautiful picnic essentials from House of Fraser.

Monday, 8 June 2015

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 8th June 2015

It is meal planning Monday and what a way to start the week with the hubby and I deciding to change the way we eat. Which means I am researching and looking at a lot of recipes for ideas and tips. Plus my Deliciously Ella book is gradually becoming my bible! We have decided that we are going to eat as clean as possible, which means cutting out processed foods and going back to the way we were supposed to eat before all the processed foods came into our lives! We are also going over to only wholegrain pasta and rice! This is something I have wanted to do for a while so when the hubby suggested that we do it I was pleased.

Each year we grow as many vegetables and fruits as we can and this year we have even more planned. We grow all of our fruit and vegetables organically. Therefore until our own produce is ready we are also going over to organic fruit and vegetables.

This week I will be trying to use as many of the processed foods that I can so that next week we can start on our new eating plan.

Sunday, 7 June 2015

Silent Sunday


25th May - 7th June 2015 - One Picture Everyday For A Year

What a busy couple of weeks! I didn't post my Project365 last week as we were away enjoying a lovely week away on holiday.

This week has been a struggle getting back into routine, but it always is after a holiday. But the summer weather has certainly helped!

While away I took so many pictures, I shared a lot of them  and wrote about our week in my holiday post but I will just share a quick round up of our pictures for my Project365.

Here is our two weeks in pictures...

25th June - 1st June 2015 - Holiday!

 Ready to go to Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

Friday, 5 June 2015

I'm Going To BritMums Live 2015!

I cannot believe that in just two weeks time I will be joining other bloggers from all over the country attending BritMums Live. BritMums Live is the biggest blogging conference in the country where hundreds, yes hundreds, of bloggers get together to meet up, network and learn more about blogging from some of the best bloggers about!

To say I am excited is an understatement!

I am excited, but also so nervous, simply because of the grand scale that this conference is on. However I know that once I get there I will be fine as there are plenty of people that I already know that are attending as well as others who I cannot wait to meet in person.

I have been lucky to find a sponsor for my ticket in Compare4Kids. You can read all about them in my Introducing My Ticket Sponsor post or simply head over to their website to see for yourself. Their Playhouse section is definitely a popular place at this time of year!

Before the big event arrives it is customary to write a little introductory post. So here is my "I'm Going To BritMums Live 2015 Meme"

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey Barbecue Glaze Pulled Pork

While I was at the BlogOn MOSI conference last month I tasted some of this delicious Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey Barbecue glaze and loved it! So when I was asked if I would like to try it out at home I couldn't wait!

We all love pulled pork and as it wasn't barbecue weather when the glaze arrived I decided to try it on a pork shoulder to make a honey glazed pulled pork. I was delighted to find that it was as delicious as I had hoped.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Creamy Stroganoff Lasagne - Family Favourites

I love lasagne, it really is one of my favourite pasta dishes. However the hubby cannot eat the rich tomato sauce that is used in a traditional lasagne recipe. This is why I created this dish. I wanted to make a lasagne that we could all enjoy. This dish certainly did not disappoint. Hence why it is now a family favourite.

We can now, all enjoy lasagne again!

Here is this weeks Family Favourites recipe...

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Our Holiday at Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

Last week we spent an fantastically relaxing week away at Center Parcs.

We normally visit the Sherwood Forest resort but this time we ventured to the other side of the country to visit the Whinfell Forest resort. We are huge fans of Sherwood Forest and hoped that Whinfell Forest would be as great. It certainly lived up to our expectations! We had such a relaxing break and came away feeling well and truly recharged.

We spent the week with my parents which was lovely for all of us. It is a huge help for the hubby and I to have the children's grandparents there to lend a helping hand, the children adore having them around, we always have lots of giggles and I also enjoy having the quality time with them!

As always we decided to hire bikes for the week. For us, having the bikes is part of the Center Parcs experience. Riding through the forest is all part of the fun and the escapism from day to day life. No cars, just riding the bikes and walking. Plus Joseph loves having the freedom to go on bike rides to the park, the twins have so much fun in the trailer and the hubby and I feel a little less guilty after all of the over indulgence.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 1st June 2015

Wow I cannot believe that we are in June! This year is flying by!

This month is going to be super busy and I find that during busy times meal planning helps no end. This month is also an exciting month, I am attending my first BritMums Live, it is my birthday and the hubby and I are going to see the Foo Fighters in Edinburgh.

Anyway back to meal planning. As we are on our way home from holiday I am not planning a meal for today as we will either eat out at lunch or pick something up on our way home. Before we went on holiday I received a meat delivery which makes meal planning after a holiday much easier as I know what I have got in the freezer for when we get home.

Last week, while were away, we enjoyed meals out and eating easier meals which is great but after a week I am ready for some good old home cooked meals.

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