Tuesday, 3 February 2015


I have been spending a lot of time lately thinking about snacks.  I'll admit to eating far too many as well and am in need of heading to the gym or hitting the road for 5km (or more!)

Everyday we (the husband and I) have to prepare a 'healthy snack' for our two screamers. And it feels like a minefield. 

My son is nut allergic, so making sure his food is well prepared and safe to eat is a must.  He is also becoming more and more particular.

My daughter hates all fruit and only likes raw carrot or sweetcorn for a vegetable treat.

They both like cheese. Some days. Other days, if we give them cheese, we are clearly torturing them because don't we know they no longer like that particular type of cheese......you get the picture.

So I have been thinking about snacks a lot.

I still haven't come to any conclusions or found anything earth shattering to share on this front just yet, but am loving the boards on Pinterest from around the world on what other people do. 

What are your favourite snacks for kids?

Thursday, 15 January 2015

A return to writing

It has been a long, long time since I updated this blog, and yet I couldn't quite let it die in the ether.  I also couldn't remember my login and my email address has since closed, so re-gaining access has been a journey in itself.  Nevertheless, ta da!  I have returned. 

I now have no weaners in the house and two screamers.  And boy do they scream! I never knew that parenting would be so LOUD! And full of bargaining, and begging (mostly me pleading for them to do as their told).  We still try our hardest to eat nutritious meals, but some days we just don't seem to be making the grade.  So I am hoping that by returning to documenting our journey and having an outlet for recipes and parenthood, we will find our feet once more.  And maybe just maybe, take the volume down a notch or two....here's hoping!

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Toddler Tantrums

The age of 2, it seems, is a difficult one.  My daughter, who is as beautiful as an angel, has the propensity to turn from an idyllic little person into a ranting demon in a split second.  She has also developed the high pitch scream of frustration, should anyone do anything that displeases her.  It is a noisy, confusing and exhausting time in our household right now.

At the same time she is engaging, chatty and adorable.  Her favourite TV show right now is Team Umizoomi.  She is Milly.  Bob is Geo and I am Bot.  Allegedly.  I am amazed at her maths ability, her shape recognition and her colour skills.  My little lady is a smart cookie.

Hubby and I have recently discovered hours of camcorder video that we had failed to upload to our computers.  Footage of our little man when he was 14 days old brings back so many memories.  Seeing him as a baby is strange.  I remember him as a baby, but seeing his features all small and newborn is like looking through fog.  I know those features, yet they are alien to me. Unfamiliar now.  Five years later and the face I see that greets me, bleary eyed, in the mornings and full of smiles in the day, is so very different to the small, fragile, precious baby that I see on screen.  It all goes by so fast.

And so I remember.  Two is an age.  Tantrums are a phase.  It will pass.  It will pass quickly and soon these days of screams and tears will be alien to me.  Unfamiliar as a new age, a new phase becomes the norm.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Knock Knock


"Knock, Knock."

"Who's there?"


"Chicken who?"

"Chicken Bow Wow! Ahahahahahahahaha!"

"Knock, Knock."

"Who's there?"


"Cow who?"

"Cow chicken! Ahahahahahahaha!"


"Knock, Knock."

"Who's there?"


"Wahshahsgsa who?"

"Wahshahsgsa gnarrhahaha! Ahahahahahahaha!"


Car journeys have just entered a new dimension of Hell.

Vegetable Frittata

This is such a simple dish to make.  Perfect for using up leftovers from a Sunday lunch.

Serves 4

8 eggs, beaten (add a pinch of salt and dash of pepper)
100 gm potato, peeled, boiled and diced
250 gm cooked vegetables (I used roasted vegetables (courgettes, tomatoes, shallots and peppers) but you can use boiled or steamed of your choice)
100 gm, grated cheese
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, peeled and diced
1 clove garlic, crushed

Heat the oil in a large saucepan and cook the onion until transluscent.  Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.

Add the cooked potato and vegetables and cook over a medium-low heat for a couple of minutes.

Turn on the grill.

Add the beaten eggs and stir a couple of times to ensure the vegetables are mixed up well with the eggs.

Cook on a medium heat for a few minutes until the sides start to look cooked and peel slightly from the edge of the pan.

Add the grated cheese and then transfer to the grill.

Cook until the eggs and cheese are cooked and start to turn slightly brown.

Serve with a lovely side salad of green leaves and beetroot.


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Easy Peasy Playdough

Another day in the on-going saga that is 'dealing with a two year old'.

Today I decided to try and tackle Miss Boo's behaviour with as much attention as I could possibly muster.  The problem with foul behaviour is that your inclination is not  to spend time, or give attention, to the person behaving badly.  But today, I thought, I will provide attention and see if we fared any better.

We did okay getting Bob off to school and for a short while once we returned.

"What do you want to do today?" I asked.

"This, that and that!" Miss Boo responded, pointing up at the shelf at our old playdough boxes and accessories.

Dutifully, I brought down the boxes and emptied everything out onto the table top.

Unfortunately, due to poor storing, all our play dough had either dried out or turned grey (thanks to all the colours being combined together).

Miss Boo did not look amused.

"Don't worry," I said cheerily, "Mummy will make you some more."

Play dough is a really simple, yet effective way to keep small hands and minds busy.  It is a great texture to play with and really lets the imagination fly.  Best of all it is super easy to make and stores well wrapped in cling film.  You can keep it for quite a few days, but do remember that it is made up of food stuffs so will eventually go mouldy.

Easy Peasy Playdough - This recipe makes quite a bit of playdough.  You could always halve the quantity to make a little less or make two batches with different colours.

2 cups plain flour
1 cup salt
2 cups water
2 tsps cream of tartare
2 tbsps vegetable oil
food colouring of your choice.

Place all the ingredients into a large saucepan and stir over a medium heat.

The mixture will seem very watery at first and you may be inclined to add more flour - don't!  The water will be absorbed and after about 5 minutes of occasional stirring the dough will form into a gelatinous mass.

Once formed, turned out onto a greaseproof baking sheet and leave to cool for a few minutes.

Whilst still a little warm, knead the dough to gain some elasticity and then leave to cool before allowing little hands to play.

NB Dough is hot when it first comes off the stove so wait until it has cooled before letting children play with it.

It kept Miss Boo amused for a short while.

Bob enjoyed playing with the play dough when he got back from school too.  Great fun for all ages.

I was lulled into a false sense of security.  Soon after the dough was thrown around the house, my washing was pulled from the line and stomped on in the muddy garden, sand was thrown at me from the sand pit and the picnic lunch I had made was tossed around the garden.


It's a hard age.

It will get better.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Toddler Blues

Yesterday was an awful day on the parenting front.  I failed on so many levels and feel like the world''s worst parent.

After Bob was born I suffered from pretty bad post natal depression.  I would phone my husband at least 4 times a day in a state of fear, frustration and tears. I battled through each day and found parenting so challenging and difficult.  Some days I enjoyed, but most I endured.

After Boo was born I took immediate action.  I joined a post-natal depression support group and started on some medication.  The effect was immediate.  I went from calling my husband 4 or 5 times a day to maybe once, just to check in.

Motherhood was still a challenge, but a manageable one.

But not everyday is plain sailing.  Some days can be hard.  Each moment can be a chore.

I love my children.  They are my pride and joy, but when I am enveloped by this cloak of depression I find it so hard to love parenting them.  Each demand and need becomes another bind that suffocates me and I tense up.  Every cuddle asked of me makes me tighter and tighter until I can't do anything but explode.

Yesterday was a bad day.  From the start Miss Boo pushed my buttons and then some.  It's not her fault.  she's two.  She does exactly what a two year old should do and she is perfect. 

But I lost it.  I shouted.  

I shouted at a two year old. 

She is fine.  She probably doesn't remember this morning.  Most times she just laughed in my face and carried on doing what she was doing (hitting her brother, biting me, throwing everything around the house, breaking lamps, destroying my plants, throwing food at me).  But other times I could see that she was upset and confused.  Why wasn't I finding what she was doing fun?

When my husband got in I collapsed in his arm in a fit full of tears.

I went out in the evening.  I did a work out and pushed myself hard so that my body released all its tension and endorphins ran through my veins.

I came home and snuggled in bed next to my daughter.  Gently snoring away.  Looking as beautiful and angelic as ever.

I woke in the morning to cuddles and kisses and giggles galore.

I have not woke with a cloak on me.  A resolve lies in my heart to make each day a better day.  To learn to cast off any cloak that tries to suffocate me again. I owe that to her and to Bob.  I owe it to myself.

I hope that I am strong enough.