Welcome to my blog!

If you ask me what my very favourite thing is I would not hesitate to say my family. I came into motherhood quite late on, and was immediately overwhelmed with how amazing it is. Now I would like nothing more than to be a Domestic Goddess, and surround my family in love, good food, beautiful things and lots of happy memories. And like the majority of families these days, we need to do it on a budget!

I firmly believe we all have a little bit of the Domestic Goddess inside us, just waiting to break out. Whether that is knowing how to make a roast chicken feed a family of 4 for a week, being able to make, repair or recycle clothes, hunting down a bargain, or simply turning everyday, simple things into pretty or useful items, with a little bit of imagination we can all dip in to the Goddess inside and make our lives that little bit more interesting.

I hope you enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy sharing my (challenging) journey into Domestic Goddessness!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Morning Blues.

I don't normally suffer from Monday Morning Blues. Shift work means that Monday doesn't always mean work, although I tend to work Mondays for childcare reasons. But since I'm on Fat Leave at the mo, that doesn't even count! This morning, however, is a bit different. Four hours sleep (thanks Teaghan) means I've been awake since about 3. I gave up trying to get littlest 'un back to sleep at 6 and got up. Guess what? I am now the only one awake and not snoring. Except the cat.

Since it's bank holiday and of course it's persisting down here in the Manchester area (I know that's difficult to believe!)  we need to decide how to spend the day. We had planned a family day out, which normally would be fun. But I hate going out on Bank Holidays at the best of times because the world and his dog are out, and finding somewhere inexpensive and unaffected by the weather is not easy. Plus do I really want to spend my precious family time playing Dodge the Scrote at Heaton Park or something? So, what to do today? Think I'll leave it to Himself to decide, then if it turns out badly I can blame him!

Of course it's Handmade Monday today. That will be a pleasant way to spend the next hour or so until the Flip Flop wakes up, so as soon as I've posted this blog I will be wandering over to visit Wendy at 1st Unique Gifts to nosey at what everyone has been up to!

My contribution to Handmade Monday is a little bit on the small size this week. Innocent Smoothie Bottle Hat small actually. I mentioned this in my blog last week, and it's just another reminder that Innocent drinks are running their Age UK campaign again this year, so get your needles and your stash and get knitting! All for a good cause, for each hat they will give 25p to Age UK. Here's my little contribution so far:

You can find out more on the Innocent Smoothie Big Knit page They have patterns for the hats as well, though I notice that they haven't got crochet patterns this year, only knitting ones.

We have been somewhat slacking in the old Takeaway Challenge stakes recently. I'm sure you understand given the tiny baby in the house. But I did make a valiant effort on Saturday to make Fajitas. From scratch, tortillas and all. Well, they weren't strictly fajitas. Nor were they tortillas. They were flat breads, and the filling was just chicken/quorn with a BBQ seasoning, sour cream dip and onions and peppers.  But the flat breads were home made, and surprisingly easy. No photo I'm afraid, because it was all a bit of a car crash tea, but it was eaten by everyone, even Caoimhe! 

Well it seems the house is stirring. Or at least the smallest one in it. so that's my peace shattered for the day!
Til next time!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thursday Blog Hop

A mention today for Handmade by Me, which is a new forum set up for crafty type folks, and hosted by Jude on her own website. The link is on my sidebar if you're interested in chatting to like minded people, or even if you're just after a bit of crafty inspiration or advice. Today also marks the first Handmade by Me Thursday Blog Hop. It is hosted by Caroline and can be found here. Have a look at some of the lovely blogs and maybe add your own if you are into crafty things yourself!

We've been having a bit of messy play this week. The Flip Flop wanted to do some painting yesterday morning, so we took full advantage of her early rising and Tilly's lie in to get some quality Mummy-Flop time in. First of all we made a card for granddad's birthday, and then we got the tempura paint out and a very messy, fun time was had by us both. No paint brush required!

We also made a chocolate cake, a small chocolate sponge smothered in melted chocolate, for Granddad's birthday cake.

In my own crafting news, I finally got the opportunity to make a card for one of Tim's friends, whose wife has had a little boy this week. The sex was a secret so I was unable to preempt it and make the card until Monday! Congratulations again to Gary and Alison!

I also had the opportunity to try out some bath bombs this week, courtesy of Anita and Lesley at Bath Bomb Creations. I had the pleasure of trying out their lavender and ylang bombs, and they were lovely! A little smaller than I thought they would be, but the scent was really nice and where I have had a problem with some bath products drying my skin out previously, these did not at all. The only thing that was missing from my bathing experience was a glass of wine. But since I am breastfeeding, the wine was out! They use essential oils in their products and they are definitely worth a try so have a wander over to their website and see if anything tickles your fancy.

Well that's about it for me for today. Til next time!

Monday, August 22, 2011


I love muffins. Both types, actually, the lovely gooey cakey type and the floury bread ones that go so well with a large, snotty egg.(of which several have passed my lips in the last fortnight, how I missed them!)
But I'm talking about the cake type ones that 'us Northerners' should really call something else I guess! Muffins are so easy to make, all you do is bung your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients, give it a stir, spoon into muffin cases and bake. No problem with beating to within an inch of it's life, if there are lumps in the batter, it seems to make the muffins work and taste better. And although they have more sugar in them than the Tate and Lyle factory, you can kid yourself that they are healthy because the nicest ones are the fruity ones.

I'm pretty new to muffin baking in truth. I have always liked to eat them of course, but never thought to make them. But I discovered the joy of baking them last year when faced with a couple of over ripe bananas and a bored toddler. Enter Nigella's chocolate banana muffin recipe and I've never looked back.
So this week we've been baking muffins. First up was Honey and Raisin muffins from the Sainsbury's Baking book. (bargain at £3 atm)

These were delicious, full of raisins and oats. Although calling them honey and raisin muffins is a bit of a cheat, since the only honey you use is on the top! Even my mum liked these, and she is notoriously fickle when it comes to *foreign muck*!
And then on Saturday morning, for breakfast (although it was nearer lunchtime when we had them) we baked some  apple and cinnamon muffins, courtesy of Nigella (who else?)

I cheated a bit with these. Nigella's recipe calls for chopped almonds. I didn't have any so substituted in porridge oats instead. They had chunks of apple in them which made the muffin denser and moister, and utterly moreish! But baking these with an impatient toddler and a fractious baby was not a smart move and instead of being a lovely calming activity it was a little fraught.

No idea what muffins we will be making this week, but I have definitely got the baking bug. so we'll see what we can come up with. And Caoimhe has her final day at the childminder today so a baking day a week will be one way to entertain her.

Granddad's birthday this week, so some card making is on the agenda. Will need to be timed around Tilly's nap time, but a fun way to spend some quality time with the Flip Flop.

As it's Monday, I don't think I need to remind you to have a bimble over to see what other crafty type peeps have been up to for Handmade Monday Thanks for hosting it again Wendy.

And just a quick mention to anyone who is into charity knitting that The Innocent Smoothies Big Knit is on to raise funds for Age UK. It only involves knitting little hats for their little bottles, I'm sure you've seen them in the supermarket for the last couple of years. The closing date is 14 Oct. Anyway have a look on the website. Oh and while you're at it, Simply Knitting have nominated Refuge as their charity of the year and they are looking for knitters to make blankets for the kiddies and adults at their shelters. More details for that can be found here.

Right, that's me for now,  so til next time!

Monday, August 15, 2011

How is it Monday already??!

Having to type this one handed so please forgive any spelling mistakes. It's easy to forget the newborn stage of wanting to be glued to mummy's chest permanently for the first couple of weeks! It's all coming back to me now, though!

Well it's Monday again folks, and of course that can mean only one thing: it's time to see what everyone has been up to in the crafty world. So once you've finished here. have a bimble over to see Wendy at 1st Unique Gifts for Handmade Monday I will be doing, given half a chance!

Just want to make a couple of other mentions here as well today. First of all to Claire Mackaness at Beautiful Things by Claire I bought some buggy grippers from her and although I haven't yet had much chance to try them out, I am happy and looking forward to dangling Teaghan's favourite toy from them! Or my brolly if this glorious summer continues!
Claire also directed me to the Isle of Tea blog I never knew it existed, and as a 'Tea Head' am grateful for being shown! They have a giveaway at the moment as well, so have a look.

Obviously it's not been easy fitting in craftiness this week, but I did succeed to spend a couple of hours with my head in the craft box, so to speak. I had a project to finish so thought that I should make use of a 2 hour nap from Teaghan to get it done. It is a mini book for Caoimhe's childminder, as she is retiring. I wanted to give her something personal to remember Caoimhe by (as if anyone can forget Caoimhe!) and I am pleased enough with the result:

Front cover

some of the pages

Even had time yesterday afternoon for some baking with Caoimhe. We made some green Shrek shaped biscuits :)

You'll notice that some have eyes and some don't. I forgot to put them in before they went into the oven and only managed to get a few in before they went hard! 

Off to put my feet up with a brew now, as Teaghan has actually gone to sleep woop!
Til next time :)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Look what I made!

It's Handmade Monday once again (where does the week go??) so don't forget to visit Wendy at 1st Unique Gifts for the Handmade Monday Link Party. Lots of lovely blogs there, and I'll be having a wander over myself shortly if I get the chance.

Bit of a cheating Handmade Monday for me this week. Although to be fair I *have* managed a tiny bit of crafting thins morning, so I do have something to show on Handmade Monday. But in my defence I have been otherwise distracted by the squirmy little girl in my belly making a rather belated, although speedy, entrance to the world last Tuesday, at 6 days overdue. Bit of a whirlwind labour really, just about 6 hours long and somehow I managed to stay at home until the very last possible moment. Part of that was because I didn't think I was in labour, and a chat to the midwife on labour ward led me to believe if I was in labour, I was very early doors. Something about the fact I could talk to her or something. Apparently you can't talk through contractions. (Obviously not met me before!) Would love to have seen her face when I rolled up at the Labour ward an hour later fully dilated and ready for launch! I was a bit too busy to ask which midwife it was who thought I was only in the early stages, as Teaghan Alice arrived about an hour later. Does she count towards Handmade Monday?? :)

I did manage to knock up a thank you card this morning for the lovely midwife who delivered her.

And there was a bit of time for a bit of messy play with the Flip Flop as well. We made a telescope to go with the pirate sword and eye patch she got at Blue Planet on Friday.

Off to fulfill my role as Milk Machine now.
Til next time!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Hurry up Baby G, your time is up!

As you can probably guess from the title of the blog I am still here with a child in my belly, at 5 days over. How rude! Beginning to get desperate now. If she is still in situ on Thursday by the time I get into antenatal clinic I may well have to stage a sit in until they forcibly remove her!

So I am sure you will fogive my complete lack of crafting this week. I have done very little, I have lacked the motivation and have been too easily distracted. The domestic goddess has taken a bit of a backseat and been replaced by the huffing, puffing, fed up, too hot, too tired, too uncomfortable pregnant whale. Tim did have the nerve to say the other day that the next baby will have to be a winter one so i'm not heavily pregnant in the summer again. I'm sure you don't need to hear my response to that statement. Suffice it to say he has more chance of getting a Nobel prize for literature, a euromillions lottery win of over 100 million, and an invitation to stay at Buck House all in the same week than having another child with me!

The only one who's been doing anything remotely domestic goddess like this week has been the Flip Flop, who made chocolate fudge muffins with Grandma. I am not sure, but I think she actualy enjoyed licking the spoon afterwards more than eating the finished cakes, but isn't that the best bit anyway!

That said, I did get out my craft box this morning for a few minutes of uninterrupted making. (Cbeebies has it's uses!) Caoimhe leaves the childminder in a couple of weeks, and so I am planning to make her a little momento as a thank you. I am making a mini book to put some pictures of Caoimhe in for her, and may well plan some other little bits and pieces if I get the chance. I have made the inside pages and just need to decide which of the 45000 + pictures of Caoimhe we've taken over the last 2 yrs 8 months I would like to include.

Just a quick nudge to remind you that it's time for Handmade Monday over on Wendy's blog. Not had a chance to visit any of the blogs as yet today. Secretly hoping I won't have time at all as, no offence, but I'd rather be on the labour ward just at the moment!

Til next time!