Well here we are again, I hope you are doing ok and that your families are all well too? The change in the weather has definitely made a difference to how many of us are feeling this week. It adds to the mood doesn’t it? The silver lining is that it is good for the garden if you have one and also it can be a relief to those with hayfever. See there’s always a positive, which can be hard to find at the moment.
Speaking of the garden, I took delivery of the recent Today’s Special Value from Thompson & Morgan which was a smorgasbord of fruit plants and seeds. I have to admit, when I ordered it I didn’t really think about the amount of plants I was getting and what I was actually going to do with them. I don’t have a vegetable patch, or a nice raised bed, I don’t even have a trug!
Never-the-less when they arrived I set to trying to find homes for them all in the various empty pots I had in the garden. I mentioned last week I had ordered the compressed compost (which is now sold out) which you add water to and fluffs up into 10 litres of compost. It just about got me through all the plants although I had a few pots with leftover soil in them.
Even though the directions for the raspberries and strawberries where to spread them evenly in rows with quite big gaps between them, I had to instead put the raspberries in their own individual pots and put a few of the strawberries in together. I have potted two of the gooseberries and will probably gift the last one. I need one more pot for one of the blueberries too but so far so good.
I used the feed that came with it and the seeds I shall leave for now as I think I have enough to get on with. I really hope some of this takes, it would be so satisfying to have grown our own fruit. My trees are coming along too so I will need to find better homes for them too.
We have, like so many others, been making sure to get our daily exercise. Sometimes the day starts with Joe Wicks, sometimes we get the kids to do Cosmic Yoga. If you haven’t tried that yet and you have kids it’s on YouTube and it’s great fun. It’s child friendly yoga, often themed around something like Frozen, Moana or Trolls and my girls seem to really love it.
What’s been really nice though is the family walks we have been able to take after we are done with home schooling. We are lucky in that we have a number of options on our doorstep that we can walk to without having to use a car. We have a woodland walk nearby that takes us through lovely fresh green woods which the girls love as it serves their imagination well.
There is a run-down shelter along the way that has been brightly graffiti-ed and Tilda and Ivy wanted to stop for a quick picture. The walks have been lovely and something to look forward to and it is keeping us clear-headed and of course getting some of our steps in.
What I’ve been cooking
What haven’t I been cooking? I feel like I’m constantly cooking! Well one thing that we have been having I can’t claim to have made because I ordered them from QVC. Yep you guessed it, The Real Pie Company Pasties!! I wanted to make sure we have a few things in the freezer that are easy to do and require little extra thought. I ordered the 12 pack that was a mix of traditional and the steak but they are now on waitlist but you can still order the 10 piece steak pasties in traditional or mushroom so have a look.
They are perfect for lunch on their own or for dinner with a salad, I’ve always been a fan of them when trying them at work but it’s the first time I’ve ordered them and I’m so pleased I did, it’s just what we needed. I have even taken them into work to heat up in the microwave but don’t tell Bret that as he will kill me!
I also jumped on the lockdown bandwagon and made Banana Bread. Why is it that so many people are making it? I think perhaps it’s just because it’s easy to make and it makes use of the old black bananas! I upgraded ours by adding a sachet of hazelnut Hotel Chocolat grated chocolate which was a really nice extra. These are the sachets you normally put in the Velvitiser.
225g SR Flour
225g Caster Sugar
4 ripe bananas
1 sachet hotel chocolat hazelnut chocolat. Chocolate drops will do though, or add raisins or a handful of chopped walnuts, whatever you fancy!
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Butter a loaf pan, I also put a strip of baking paper as a liner.
Peel and mash bananas in a bowl and set aside.
In a mixing bowl blend flour, sugar and butter, then follow with the 3 eggs and mix.
Fold in the mashed banana.
Pour into loaf tin and pop in the oven for about an hour and a half. I found that mine went a little too brown on the top so I would perhaps add tin foil over the top for the last half hour (make sure you’re using oven gloves!).
I tried out something new for us on the BBQ. Courgettes! I love courgettes but can you believe I’ve never put them on the BBQ?! I simply slice them into quarters length ways. I then put them in a dish and drizzled them with olive oil and then squeezed lemon juice all over them and then sprinkled them with dried thyme. Simply pop on the BBQ grill until they start to get nice grill marks on them. About 10 mins.
What I’ve been buying
I will put my hand up and say that there have been plenty of mornings so far that I have stayed in my pyjamas. It’s easily done and before I know it it’s 11am and I’m still not dressed yet. So I figured I might as well order some nice new PJs that almost pass for loungewear! I really love new PJs almost as much as clean sheets day so these Cyberjammies have been a real treat. They are 95% modal so super soft and breathable. They are one of my favourite things at the moment. Wash them at 30 degrees, I don’t tumble dry them either.
The other thing I bought were the Skechers Cali Breeze Double Strap EVA slide sandals as easy slip on slip off, in and out of the garden shoes. They are a ridiculously low price so a really handy little spring summer shoe treat. I find them incredibly comfortable and I like that you can rinse them clean! In most brands I have to go to a size 9 but I am in the 8 here and they are perfect. A lot of reviews say to go down a whole size so I would agree here. I have the gold but there are a lot of other colours still available too.
So there we go, another week done but before I go, if you are reading this today when my blog goes up (Thursday) then it’s Diamonique Day! So many great offers to be found including the Today’s Special Value from Melissa Odabash. This necklace is rather gorgeous and a lovely addition for summer and is available in gold or rhodium plating.
I know you might not be thinking about pieces like this as we aren’t going out but I personally like to still wear my favourite pieces of jewellery even at home as it cheers me up. If this style isn’t for you then tune in to see all the other fabulous shows throughout the day and if you aren’t shopping right now then I hope we can keep you company.
Again, I hope you are all doing OK and managing to keep yourselves occupied and managing to juggle working from home or kids or all of the above. Stay safe, stay home and let’s all hope that we get to hear some positive news coming all of our way soon. My thoughts are with all of you who have had to deal with loss right now and for those who are struggling with this whole strange time.
Sending lots of love to you all,