Sunday, 20 July 2014

playing house!

Yesterday I had a morning to myself with no children. I decided I would start the summers house sorting little early . We don't finish school until Wednesday here.

I spent all morning sorting out the living room. Clearing out papers etc from around the computer. Moving all the furniture and cleaning behind it. The shelves have been sorted through, lot's of unnecessary papers got rid of, others moved to the right place for filing. children's little bits put back in their bedrooms. The living room looks beautiful again now.

Then I did the same in the hall. Only one piece of furniture there so much less of a task.

I decided to try out a suggestion from another runner to stop the evening snacking on junk by having a more substantial lunch. I saw a recipe posted via Facebook for Lentil salad. Perfect I had all of the ingredients in, except for croutons/ barley bread. I substituted this with wholemeal pittas. I'm not going to lie it did not look appetising. But it tasted fantastic! I will definitely be making it more often.

Look nice tidy shelves.

I then went to help my sister, she is moving tomorrow and I had a chat with her hubby. They were having trouble getting the packing done. He was at the new house getting jobs finished up there. So I went to their flat to help out. It was nearly done. I just supported to be fair and when it came to only being her bedroom left to di I decided it was time to take the children to the park. They were getting tetchy and bored, the baby was tired. so a walk was perfect for giving everyone a distraction. we had a lovely hour or so playing then returned home. Where my sister had very kindly ordere4d fish and chips for dinner.

We ate chatted for a little, then I left so that she could get the children to bed.

I did my ironing when I got in so it is one less job for this evening when I get in.  I did not snack at all during the evening. Today is moving day. I shall be leaving soon to go and help get everything from flat to the new house.

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Healthier me

I am working towards a healthier me. I joined a running group to try and motivate me more, I have made a couple of the runs but work and childcare can interfere somewhat. Last night the group offered a speed session with a personal trainer. As it was Friday evening this time I made it., thanks to nanny and granddad having Stephanie.

I'm not going to lie it was tough. It was 33 degrees out at 6:30 last night when we started. We jogged 800m to warm up then did some crazy exercises- looked like a ministry of silly walks! Very amusing. Must have been more amusing for the group of youths sat in the field watching us LOL. Then we set about the real training. 1000m fast as you can run. then 800m, then 600m then ending with 400m. followed by 400m cool down plus stretches. It was tough, more than once I thought I couldn't finish, but I did. Somewhat slower than some of the others but I finished. Liz the personal trainer took some pictures as we were running;

Talking to some of the others made me think about what is slowing me down. Other than a need to train more. My diet is shocking! I can eat really well all day but then by 9pm I am snacking on junk as I sit and do my paperwork. I need to get out of that habit. I am going to stop buying the junk treats which we all love so much so that it removes temptation. If there is chocolate there I will eat it. I am researching healthy snacks I can pick at. I eat fruit all day long at work so don't want to increase my fruit intake anymore. I am not sure what I should be trying to eat instead. So I have a question for you today-

Do you have any favourite snacks that I can pick at late at night, or any other tips to help me?

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Nearly there

It's nearly the end of term. I can't wait to spend time at home with my monsters. I do have to share them with their dads but I am sure we can have a fantastic time when they are home. We have a couple of trips out planned (and paid for courtesy of Tesco's). We will be going to Drusilla's and Thorpe park. I also have my national trust and English heritage we shall be making full use of. As well as planning in a frugal camping holiday to Cornwall.

I have been stocking the freezer with cheap (yellow stickered) foods over the last couple of weeks so that I can put a little money away over the next few weeks towards our wee holiday. I also plan on picking up an extra couple of store cupboard items to take with us to keep food costs low whilst we are away. Things like beans, tinned fish, pasta. All the camping staples we enjoy.

Stephanie and I had a lovely day out on Sunday to the Rare breeds centre in Ashford. I took my class there on Monday. One of the other teachers went for the pre-visit check, but I like to know where I am going so decided a family day out would be perfect!

I am having a slow clear out, just a little each night as I have lots of papers etc that I don't need to keep any longer. I am doing a little now, and plan on a big blitz whilst the children are away.

I am also about to get very serious on my marathon training. It's only 16 weeks away. I am running the marathon for MacMillan in December. My just giving page is here if you feel able to contribute to the cause.

Sunday, 6 July 2014


I've had a busy at home day today. The reports are finally written and ready to be handed in first thing tomorrow.

In between writing bursts I have been for a run, first one in a fortnight since I injured my foot. I am pleased to say that 3 miles later and my foot is feeling fine, no niggles, no swelling.

I also had my new freezer delivered. Remember I have been complaining for months about the one I had. I have been saving and finally I ordered my new one. Through Quidco naturally so I will get some cash back too. The old one is going to put up on free cycle as soon as I have defrosted it.

My shiny new toy. I have managed to start filling it. I am trying to make life simple for in the summer holidays. So I started with some potatoes I had lurking in the bottom of the sack. They were starting to sprout so I used them up before they were no good. I have made a roast for today's dinner with enough left over to have a microwave meal for us all tomorrow. I have also prepped some roast potatoes for using in the holidays.

Par boiled, tossed in flour then frozen on the tray ready to go in the oven at a later date. They are now sitting neatly in Tupperware tubs in the freezer ready for use as required. I also made up a batch of mashed potato

I have 3 meals of mash and 2 of frozen roasties. That's a good head start on having simple cook meals for the end of lovely summer days. I need to stock the freezer up, that will happen gradually over the next few weeks as I find different foods on offer during the weekly shop. I am also hoping to be able to do a 'butchers run' now I have a new freezer with lots of space.

I have also done some organising on the internet. In December I am going ot be running my first marathon. I decided that I may as well set a proper challenge lol I have set up my just giving page, I am going to be raising for Macmillan. A charity incredibly close to my heart. If you feel able to donate the link is here Marathon fundraising. I will also get a widget to have a direct link on the blog. I need ot just find out how to do that.

Saturday, 5 July 2014

Run out of ingredients?

It's just me and Dylan home today. He asked if we could have pizza for dinner today. We had popped to Tesco. I knew I already had the ingredients in so I agreed. When I went to make the bases I realised I didn't have any yeast.
So did I run to the coop? No, although the thought raced through my mind. I reached for Google. I searched for yeast free pizza bases, lots popped up using baking powder. Excellent. Off I popped to the kitchen to get some. Would you believe it, I seem to have run out of that as well. I still didn't go to the shop again though. I did a little more searching and found a recipe using plain flour, butter and milk. Hmm odd I thought completely different to any other pizza dough I have made. But I definitely had those ingredients so I gave it a go. Roll it was a doddle- no kneading required!

I base rolled out, looks similar to my normal base, it feels a bit softer though. I made the pizza like I normally would- frugal style.

basil from the garden got chopped and mixed with;

tomato puree and tomato ketchup (value range of course)

spread over the base. topped with 2/3 of  block of reduced price cheese;

Covered in a favourite topping- I had sweet corn, mushroom and pepperoni. Dylan just had pepperoni. Into the oven for 20 minutes.

One cooked pizza. It was delicious, in fact Dylan and I agree it is much better than our usual recipe for the base. I am a convert!

Oh would you like the recipe so you can try it out? Yeast free pizza dough.
In the recipe tin I got for mothers day. Ready for next time we have pizza!

the past week

 A few snaps to catch up tow here we are this week. Life is busy. good but busy so I don't seem to have much time to post. Am hoping a nice relaxing summer holiday will help. Only 2.5 weeks to go!


playing with friends

ebaying to make cash for the summer holidays;

yummy reduced food for meals;


Am off now to do a little housework and other bits and pieces whilst having a relaxing evening in front of the box as I work.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Crafting on

Yesterday I got home from work to be asked by Stephanie is she could paint some of the clay pots she made a little while ago. So out come the paints.

I had been planning on coming home and getting this beast out so that I could get on with extra large pile of paper work I need to do this week;
Oh well I thought it's only another half hour, it'll wait. My baby won't. So we painted her pots. Then she found her old shaker maker set, can we do this?
So we did. Then the hamma beads were found, so we did those;
A crafty box set for eraser making was discovered lurking in the cupboard. So we did those as well;

By which time it was 9pm. Hmm I said its' already late when you have a swimming lesson first thing in the morning. Shower and bed. So Stephanie showered and I took the beast upstairs. My foot was hurting you see so I thought I would sit in bed and get on with the paperwork. I could use my headphones and listen to the radio as I worked. This was at 9.30pm. Something must have gone wrong with the plan though as the next thing I now it is 6.30AM and I have a little lady showing me that the eraser models we baked before she went to bed had cooled down. I was getting a good morning story from the characters we had created.
I guess I was a little tired after all. The paperwork is still here, I have managed about 1/5 of it this afternoon in between house work and loom bracelet making on the new kit Stephanie bought herself whilst we shopped this morning.
 Oh well I have had fun with my baby girl, soon she'll be a teenager (eek!) and won't want to spend time with me. I'll just have to manage to work through my lunches this week to catch up. sandwiches and easy to eat at the computer food. It is worth it!!