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, March 25, 2013

Hello son!

Those of you who know me or follow me on Facebook might already know that I've had a busy week. This would be because of the St Paddy's day present I received, bang on time unlike his tardy sisters! Last Sunday at 1216 am Caelan Michael arrived after a reasonably short (thanks son) but no less painful entrance to the world. We're all doing fine, if a bit sore and sleep deprived, and getting to know each other. The girls are besotted of course. And I'm loving being a third time mum. Only wish I could meet that gynaecologist who told me I'd definitely need medical intervention to have a child. Boo sucks to you mister! I proved you wrong three times!

So obviously I've not really had much time to make anything this week. I had hoped to show you the decorated egg Caoimhe (well let's be honest it will be mostly me) has to make for nursery this week, but an impromptu visit to the pictures yesterday (Caoimhe not me) put paid to that. Hopefully we will be making it in the next couple of days and I can share it again. The girls already have a fair collection of Easter eggs so it looks like there will be lots of cooking with chocolate over the next few weeks.

I did want to share something since it's  Handmade Monday so I have finally written down my recipe for banana pancakes. These are quick, easy and delicious, and my girls love them for breakfast. You can add anything you like or have to hand to the batter, but this is the winning combination for my girls! This recipe makes enough pancakes for 2 hungry girls and I usually have a pancake left over too.

You need: 1/2 cup of flour - I usually use plain but self raising is fine too. 1 banana, the riper the batter, 1 pot of yogurt or fromage frais - the fruit kind, I haven't tried plain but suspect you would need to add sugar or other sweetener if you did. 1 egg, a splash of milk, a good handful of raisins or chocolate chips.

Mash the banana in a bowl and add the egg and yogurt. Mix well and add the flour stirring well to incorporate it all. You may need to add a little milk here to shaken the batter. It all depends on the size of the egg and amount of yogurt. You are looking for a soft dropping consistency. These are thick pancakes, like drop scones, not like thin flat pancakes for tossing.

Drop spoonfuls of batter into a hot frying pan, not too hot or they burn before they are set. When the top looks set and there are little bubbles on the top turn them over for a minute or so to brown the other side. Serve with fresh fruit and syrup - strawberry dessert syrup is the hit here.

You can make the pancakes as big or small as you like. From experience I can tell you they make a good first finger food for weaning too.

Have a wander over to Wendy's blog and see what everyone else has been doing this week.

Til next time!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

On being frugal. And eating crumpets.

Happy Mothers' day to all you lovely mummies and grandmas out there, and the ones who are just like a mum too. In the words of Faith No More - It's a dirty job but someone's gotta do it! Though I very much doubt that anyone ever wishes it were different. I've had 3 sleepless nights with hot snotty coughing kids but despite that I wouldn't change it for the world.

I'd like to take this opportunity to wish for you all a day of love and laughter with your loved ones. With plenty of (hot) tea.

We shall shortly be heading out into the cold with a picnic packed for an afternoon at Portland Basin. I'm sure some people will be enjoying a Sunday lunch at the pub and I'm equally sure every gastro pub (I despise that term!) has a special menu planned so mum doesn't have to cook. At a special price too! Not for us. Sausage and mash is on the cards. And I'm not cooking it!

Money is tight all round at the moment and yet we are guilted into spending what we don't have in this incredibly materialistic age. My girls bought me a box of chocolates (always appreciated!) and another baking book to add to my ever growing collection. In truth I would have been happy with a card and a hug but a recipe book that i can share with the kids in the future, and make lots of happy memories doing so, is lovely too. Who needs expensive gifts or slap up meals? Not me.

I have spent most if the week thinking about frugality and budgets. Unfortunately like many these days my hubby us under threat of redundancy and as I have just gone on maternity leave the pennies are going to be very tight over the coming months. With that in mind I thought it would be a good idea to share our budgetting tips. How do you make your money go further? Its all part and parcel of being a domestic goddess after all!

I'd like to share with you a small domestic success when I attempted to make some crumpets. I got the recipe from Paul Hollywood's Bread book and knew as soon as I saw it that it would be the first recipe I tried. So yesterday I bit the bullet and you can see in the photo my efforts weren't entirely wasted. It took me a while to get them anywhere like crumpet-like in appearance, and to figure out where I was going wrong. But eventually I did and with a bit more practice I'm sure I will perfect them. If you're interested in making them may I suggest not too much batter in the ring (he says to fill the ring to just under the brim but I filled it just over halfway) and watch the heat of the pan. I had it on medium but it was too high. You will know your own cooker/hob and pan the best. It just takes a bit of experimenting. Slow and steady definitely wins the race here. Its not something you can knock up for a quick breakfast but they have kept fine overnight and taste ok reheated. Definitely something I will try again, especially as the ingredients are not difficult to obtain, in fact I bet most home bakers will have them to hand.

I'd like to direct you over to Wendy's blog again for Handmade Monday  to catch up on everyone's week. I will hopefully be heading over as soon as the kids are in bed and I get 5 minutes peace!

Til next time!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

World Book Day on Wednesday 6th March this year. Those of you with children will know this already! What have you got planned this year? Books are a lovely way of sharing precious time with kids and I definitely enjoy reading and sharing stories with my girls either through books, made up stories, or via the big goggle box! They have so many books but tend to have their favourites that we read over and over again.

This year at nursery Caoimhe is dressing up as the witch from Room on the Broom, one of her favourite stories, and one that her sister loves too. We have recorded the animation which was on telly at Christmas and they both often ask to watch it. I love watching it with them, as well as reading it, as there is always something new about it to notice.

She spent Friday afternoon making a wand with Grandma to go with her costume. She had lots of fun and you can see the result of her efforts in the picture. I am still picking glitter out of her hair - how do they manage to do that without fail?! She loves messy play, and making things, as do most children I should imagine. Although at my recent parent meeting with her teacher she did especially point out how excited Caoimhe gets when they do messing play or crafts. Not surprising really as she has always been encouraged to do it.

Not much from me other than the usual Herman cake (just a normal apple raisin and oat one this week) so just sharing my daughter's handiwork with you :) Not that there will be much chance for crafting much in the next couple of weeks. Hopefully I will have a special 'handmade' something to share with you soon!

Don't forget to go and visit Wendy at  Handmade Harbour for this week's contributions to Handmade Monday.

Til next time!