Yesterday we spent the day sailing to France (and back again) for a little trip to see how the In-Laws holiday home renovations are coming along.
Little I was a bit baffled by being woken up at 4am but Little E thought it was a great adventure and kept asking if we were in France yet - even before we arrived at the ferry port! My favourite moment was watching them sea gazing...
Now I'm even more excited about our slightly less mini adventure to Spain next month!
We have recently discovered eggs, I know late to the party!
Back in January we switched to a high protein diet. I was searching for alternatives to the starchy high carb potato, rice and pasta we ate in copious amounts and eggs kept cropping up. I wasn't an egg fan, I considered them an ingredient in my baking or a binder in recipes like homemade burgers and of course a vital element in a Sunday morning fry up. The idea of them forming the basis of a meal was an alien concept. But a cooked egg is a complex bundle of amino acids and vitamins delivering 6g of protein - 0-15% of your daily protein requirement! In just 1 egg! That's powerful.
I was scared to touch eggs full stop when pregnant due to the small but very highly publicised risk of salmonella. I can remember baking cakes with no idea if I'd put enough vanilla in because I was too concerned about tasting the raw mixture! I wish I had known that British Lion Eggs have virtually eliminated salmonella in eggs by vaccinating the hens! How clever is that! Look out for the little lion on your eggs (90% of British eggs carry the food safety mark) as they are safe to eat during pregnancy. Find out more here: Eggs and pregnancy
But how times have changed in our household! We now eat at least a dozen a week between us if not more and the children love them, especially Little I who we call the Egg Monster; She virtually inhales them! Scrambled or poached are their favourite for breakfast and Little E loves a heart shaped omelette (except of course when she meant a pancake). I personally like Spanish tortilla but I make it using sweet potatoes as they aren't as carb heavy - delicious!
Adding eggs into my diet has definitely helped my recent weight loss down. The filling effect of eggs for breakfast versus my old breakfast cereal is quite staggering. Gone are the 10am munchies and sometimes I don't even feel hungry at lunchtime.
So don't be afraid of eggs! They get a huge thumbs up from this household! Look out for the lion mark so you know they are safe and embrace their versatility whilst giving your family a protein boost.
This is a collaborative post
The clever people over at Bathrooms.com have been conducting interviews to recruit a fluffy duckling to be their Official Bath Tester! How cute!
After shortlisting the top eight feathered candidates, Bathrooms.com invited the ducklings (and their owners) to their head office for a face to bill interview. The interview day included swimming trials, ‘splashability’ challenges and tests to examine the comfort of baths. Ducklings were rated on their enthusiasm, inquisitiveness and waddling in and around the baths.
To celebrate the announcement, Bathrooms.com are giving away an iDuck wireless floating bath speaker! To enter simply tweet @bathroomsdotcom and @mummy_blog telling us which song is your favourite to sing in the shower/bath or use the Rafflecopter form below! (Remember to include which song is your shower favourite in your tweet!)
It seems we have a new, uncommissoned mural on the landing. The graffiti artist is undecided if it is a snake or snail. Looking on the upside at least it isn't a scribble...
I used to love gardening before I had the children. And I still do, sort of. I just don't have the time I used to so it tends to run riot. Of course the longer I leave it the worse it gets, until it has more in common with a jungle and I feel completely overwhelmed!
You may have read about last summer's prepping of the garden and my battle with the borders, but this year I am pleased to announce I have learnt from the past few years of mistakes. I am excited to share with you some of my top tips and tricks to help you make your garden look presentable for summer entertaining.
Since Christmas I have been slacking with cooking meals from scratch for the kids - the freezer has been rammed with our baking exploits but the savoury batch cooking has been lacking.
I have a bit more time on my hands now I am not working so have decided to start weekly meal planning. I've already conquered the world of online grocery shopping so this should make me even more efficient! At least that is the plan...
I will also be sharing some of my batch baking recipes from the previous week if you fancy having a go and filling your freezer - look out for my Rainbow Chilli recipe later on this week!
Monday - Pesto quinoa & bulgar wheat with chicken sausages and broccoli
Tuesday - Fish pie with sweet potato topping (batch bake for freezer)
Wednesday - I'm out so a quick cottage pie from the freezer for Husband and kids
Thursday - Homemade burgers (make double and freeze) with salad and pitta breads
Friday - Pork with apple and sweet potato cakes and mixed veg
Saturday - France for the day
Sunday - Chicken roast (freeze kids size portions)
Little I has started to develop patchy ezcema recently. We aren't surprised as the same thing happened to her Big Sister at around this age. It seems to flare up in her creases - so the back of her neck, backs of her knees and at her elbow joint. It isn't severe but bad enough for us to want to do something to stop any irritation she is experiencing.
You can see in the picture below the patch of eczema on Little I's neck. It is being aggravated where the collar on her clothes rub. I have been focusing on rubbing in the lotion after her bath to help protect the area when she sweats in the night. The lotion is quite thin making it easy to apply without getting cream on her clothes.
Oliatum have put together some really useful comfort skin tips to help you manage your baby's dry skin conditions.
What is your favourite tip? Mine is Tip 9 because I've always washed with non-bio products due to having sensitive skin myself - it really makes a difference! You can share your favourite comfort skin tips or one of your own unique skincare tips on Twitter using #OilatumComfortSkinTips.
I was sent Oilatum products for the purpose of review but all opinions are my own.
Looking for a toy which will provide hours of fun but also help your child's cognitive development? Then you should be looking at Swedish company Brio who make some fantastic wooden toys and this Surprise Pounder is no exception. The classic design from 1957 had been given a fresh new look for the children of today.
You and your child will not be disappointed with this traditional toy which has really stood the test of time. You can buy this and other fantastic Brio toys online at BornGifted.co.uk
So I folded that clean washing 2 minutes ago...
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
This book was our book club read. I was not impressed. Being set in war torn Afganistan I knew it was going to be depressing and as a general rule I tend to read books which catapult me away from reality. In short, I did not want to read this book.
I was right it was depressing, more so shocking, and at times I had to put it down. But it was beautiful, incredibly moving and I loved it.
The story follows the lives of two Afghan women; Mariam and Laila.
Mariam is only 15 when she is sent to Kabul to marry Rasheed 20 years her senior. At first Rasheed is kind but a series of personal tragedies reveal Rasheed's brutal personality.
Laila lives down the street. A young girl growing up in the shadow of her absent brothers who are away fighting with the Taliban. But the love of her modern thinking Father and her best friend Tariq are a shining light in the dusty city.
As Kabul is devastated by mortar attacks an aging Mariam and young Laila are thrown together to live in an impossible situation under unimaginable conditions.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. The themes in the book are tough there's no getting away from it and I was surprised and shocked by the extent of the oppression of Afgan women under Sharia law. At times I simply couldn't believe what I was reading. But the writing is stunning. The character are so finely crafted you can almost feel them standing beside you. Despite the atrocities depicted you simply cannot stop reading, desperately hoping it will somehow work out ok in the end.
Be warned, this is a book which will have you reaching for the tissues but it is worth it.
Artist, Baker and Blogger. Mum to my two beautiful, cheeky girls. Muddling my way through parenthood with equally cheeky Husband.