Pumpkin Goulding

We should have been celebrating her 5th birthday on Friday but instead I am left grieving. I tried to reassure myself that I could make it through this post without crying but then why shouldn't I cry? A member of my family has been taken away from me. For 5 years it has been Pumpkin, Leigh and Me and now I never get to hug her again or ask her how her day has been. She won't be jumping on me in the morning to wake me up for breakfast or patiently waiting whilst I do my hair. I wont find her in the windowsill chatting at the birds or waiting by the door when I get home from work. She is going to leave such a gaping hole in our lives because she was just everything to us. We loved how brave

Beef & Broccoli Ramen Noodles Recipe

Why get a takeaway this Bank Holiday weekend when you can make your own at home! This delicious bowl of goodness doesn't take long to make at all, although be prepared to leave the beef to marinate for an hour before hand. Once that's done though it's as simple as throwing it all together. Tip: I bought 2 packs of ramen noodles and just removed the flavouring sachet. Healthier than your average takeaway but just as good taste wise. We had this for our dinner the other night and there wasn't a noodle left in the pan by the end! Ingredients 80ml vegetable/sunflower oil 2 cloves of garlic 2 tbsp red wine vinegar 60ml cup honey 130ml soy sauce 2 rump steaks 3 tbsp cornstarch 2 tbsp sesame oil 80

Life in August

What a blur this month has been so far, filled with holidays and not a lot of sunshine in the UK. Still we are off work next week and I have lots of exciting things lined up which I will of course share, you know I love to. Until then here's everything that I have been enjoying over the last few weeks! Reading How to Stop Time, Matt Haig - After seeing the posters for this novel all over the underground I had to give it a read! If you like history I'd definitely recommend this book, the author plunges you into the every day of times past. Watching You know I'm not going not lie I just haven't been watching anything. TV has been very quiet this month but Victoria is starting back again on Sun

Lavender & Lemon Tarts Recipe

When we went to Mayfield Lavender Farm a couple of weeks ago we picked up all sorts of lovely goodies, including a jar of Lemon and Lavender Marmalade which I thought might be lovely in a tart. The recipe below is for a basic sweet pastry and you can add whatever filling you feel fit although I would recommend trying to get some lemon marmalade even if you can't get it with added lavender! You can read about our trip to the fields here. Ingredients 250g plain flour 1 pinch salt 80g caster sugar 100g butter, cubed and at room temperature 1 egg yolk 50ml water Lemon and Lavender Marmalade (or filing of your choice) Putting it all Together In a bowl sift the flour, before adding the salt and su

Mayfield Lavender Fields: Day Trip

Mayfield Lavender Fields have been on my to do list for quite some time but as they sit on the other side of London I've been a bit lazy about actually venturing that way. it's hard to believe that such a place could exist on the fringes of London. When you think of Lavender fields your mind normally jumps to the south of France rather than just past Croydon but it turns out you don't even need to get on a plane. All I needed to get my lazy arse there was a car, so when we randomly went and purchased one a couple of weeks ago (I know, it's like I'm a proper grown up) we tootled along the North Circular in pursuit of fields of purple. I'd read that as you round the corner you should take a d

A Levels and the Choices We Make

On Thursday people up and down the country will be waking up, rolling out of bed and heading to pick up their A Level results. After years of hard work and months of revision the time they have been dreading or anticipating has arrived. The grades they get tomorrow will shape their futures, will they make the grades to go to Uni or will they be stuck in some dead-end job for the rest of their lives because they didn’t study hard enough. True or False? In 2006, three months before I was due to sit my A-Levels I dropped out of college. My parents although horrified were understanding, I’d been given an ultimatum – either leave or we will kick you out. My grades had slipped, my English from A’s

Blueberry Scones Recipe

Do you know what makes me happy on a Sunday afternoon? Scones, that's what! No matter how you pronounce them - is it Scone or Scone?! - they always taste delicious with a big dollop of cream and jam. I have incorporated blueberries into these ones with the theory that if there's fruit in them they're healthy right? Ingredients 250g self-raising flour 60g butter, chilled and cubed 100g blueberries, chopped (frozen or fresh are fine) 30g caster sugar 3 tbsp semi-skimmed milk, plus extra for glazing 125ml buttermilk Blueberry jam Thick cream Putting it all Together Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan 180°C. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl with a pinch of salt. Add the butter, and rub togethe

Bordeaux with Friends: Travel Story

Is there anything nicer than going away with friends? The people that you love to spend your free time with in a sun-drenched location with lots of wine and food, what could be better? So when my best friend suggested that a group of us head out to France for some birthday celebrations we jumped at the chance to take a break from London. We booked our flights with Ryanair from Stanstead to Bordeaux, which were reasonably priced. We bought group train tickets from Tottenham Hale to Stanstead, something worth doing to save a few pounds. We used a favourite car hire company of ours to book a car, Economy Car Rentals. We use them every time we need a car abroad and they are much cheaper than som

Breakfast Frittata Recipe

Do you ever just get bored of having the same old thing for breakfast? My breakfast normally consists of a bowl of cereal but after two weeks of the Special K diet I can’t face looking at a bowl of a while and thought I should branch out. I made this on the Sunday it lasted really well throughout the week kept in the fridge. The beauty of it being that you can eat it hot or cold making it perfect for all occasions. The basil brings out the pesto-y taste, and you feel good eating it too as it's filled with courgette and tomato. I think it's going to be a new breakfast staple! Ingredients 2 courgettes Mixed tomatoes – I used salad, cherry and sundried 8 eggs 80g cheddar cheese 2 tsp olive

Anniversary Lunch

Before my husband, my longest relationship was 2.5 years which seems paltry now in comparison to the 7 years that we have been together. When I think that I have been with him since I was 23 and everything that has happened in that time it seems crazy that we should throw away a perfectly good reason for a celebration just because we are only meant to acknowledge the wedding anniversary now. Especially coming from someone who likes to make a point in all celebrations, including meet-a-versaries and the like. We were lucky enough to be gifted a three course meal as a wedding present at a 5* boutique hotel with a Michelin star restaurant by William Drabble and what better time to use it than o

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