Thursday, 18 July 2019

(Ad - Gifted) The Quick After Work Cookbook - Review!

Since we moved house we have been busy. Most of the days we are out of the house with various appointments, visiting my dad or just exploring our new area. I have struggled with my meal planning and I'm relying a lot on the slow cooker but sometimes I just want to be able to throw something together quickly without it and I was running out of ideas. There is only so many times we can have something out of the freezer with pasta or rice.

I was recently asked if I would like to have a look at "The Quick After-Work Cookbook". 

The Quick After Work Cookbook features easy, speedy recipes and big satisfying flavours that just hit the spot!

Each of the recipes in this cookbook can be on the table in half an hour or less! You can take store cupboard staples, add a few fresh ingredients and prepare delicious food that’s good for you.

There is 80 easy to follow recipes including midweek meals, kids teas and desserts.

I have skimmed through the book and I can't wait to get started on trying the new and quick recipes. I think the first of the one's I will try is the Pork and Apple burger recipe. I think these could be cooked on the BBQ too. They seem perfect for the weather we've been having!

Pork and Apple burgers recipe

The chicken salad with berries looks interesting. I would never have put chicken and berries together even though I will happily have chicken and pineapple.

I love the look of the desserts and cakes in The Quick After Work Cookbook! I think I am going to have to try the Hot Bakewell Blondies. They look so good!!

Hot Bakewell Blondies recipe in a cookbook

This really does look like a great cookbook full of recipes my family will love. I will be trying some soon so do keep an eye on my weekly meal plan. Lots of the recipes use ingredients which I will usually have in anyway so there is no fuss in having to buy lots of random things.

The Quick After Work Cookbook is available to buy now for £8.99 which I think is a great price for what is included in this book.

I was sent The Quick After Work Cookbook free of charge in exchange for this blog post.

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

A visit to my youngest girls new school.

Many, many weeks ago I applied for a new school for Ellie. She obviously couldn't go to her old one as it was over 150 miles away so a new one needed to be found. I applied through the council and waited and waited. There was no great rush as we hadn't planned on making her start until September.

We heard she was accepted to our chosen school a couple of weeks ago and went to visit it last Wednesday. We had read all the way through the website, looked at everything online and we felt it would be a good school for Ellie.

From the second we arrived at the school we felt at ease. It's more of a rural type school than an inner city one. There is just over 500 pupils. In comparison to her old school which had about 1500! 

We were welcomed by the deputy head and we felt welcome. She was lovely. She had been a teacher at the school for over 20 years and stays because she loves it. 

The deputy head was quick to explain that some schools in Scunthorpe and surrounding areas were given money to do them up and rebuild them but this school wasn't, she was on the verge of apologising but there is nothing wrong with old buildings. They seem more homely, new builds seem sterile and business like. Give me an old school building any day!

She also explained that the way they have tutor groups is different from other schools. They use the vertical tutor group system where the tutor group have children of all ages, rather than by groups of the same age. In each tutor group there is say 4 years 7's, 4 year 8's, 4 year 9's and so on! I think this is a great idea. It stops the year groups being stuck with each other and they get to know people right through the school. There is also 2 teachers in each tutor group so the kids get plenty of attention.

Ellie is overjoyed that there is no more shirts and ties. The uniform is more relaxed with a polo shirt and cardigan or jumper but still looks smart. I priced it up and 2 polo shirts, 2 cardigans and a PE top came to just under £70. Eek! Some things never change going from school to school.

We met the SENDCO woman who seems lovely who will make sure that Ellie is looked after with her hearing loss. We also explained about how at one point we thought Ellie may have Autism but it was diagnosed as Social Anxiety but since settling into year 7 she has been better than she's ever been at school. They are going to look into this and see how she gets on. 

We were shown the whole school and all of the classrooms where children were being taught. They looked so much calmer and more respectful than children at Ellie's old school. We were also shown the inclusion room where children are sent when they have been misbehaving or need a time out. She said it's not a negative room. If Ellie ever felt overwhelmed with the new school she could go there to take a break.

We explained about the bullying which Ellie had in her previous schools and how she was feeling a little worried about the same happening. The teacher said she can't promise bullying wouldn't happen because it does happen everywhere but they take a hard stance on punishing the bullies which was good to hear.

Ellie's favourite subject is music and she was very impressed with the music rooms. They were full of instruments and there is little soundproof rooms to make and record music. There was also a textiles room. Ellie has never studied textiles but she loves making clothes for her dolls so I think it will soon become one of her favourite subjects.

When Ellie starts the new school in September she will be buddied up with a few people until she gets her bearings. I feel happy with the new school and so does my girl. She can't wait until September!

Tuesday, 16 July 2019

A weekend at the Winterton Agricultural Show!

Before we even moved down to Scunthorpe my dad told me about the Winterton Agricultural Show and that he was planning on displaying his two vintage tractor things and his vintage car. He of course invited us all to go and we have been looking forward to it for months.

The two day show has everything you expect to find at an agricultural show. Horses, sheep, chickens, Alpacas, craft stalls, music, motorbikes, floats, monster trucks, scurry racing, random displays in the main arena, dog shows, fairground rides, lots of different food and so much more! 

We arrived at the show at about 10am on Saturday and the kids were keen to have a look around. 

There was so much to see and watch. Every step we took there was something new and different. The kids were fascinated. It was the first time they had been to a show like this. They were amazing by all the effort people go to in the craft, baking and flower arrangement competitions and could have easily spent hours just watching the show jumping.

Lots of the different community groups in the town made floats and got to show them off by going around the ring. They had all made so much effort. There was one's from schools, playgroups and youth clubs.

The Imps Motorcycle Display Team which were on My Sunday Snapshot post were amazing! Some kids on the motorbikes looked so small and I think they said the youngest was 5 years old!

Towards the end of day one at the show all the vintage farm vehicles that had been on display all day got to do a lap or two around the main arena. My dad has his old lawnmower and his little tractor thingy. 

My dad drove the tractor and his partner drove the lawnmower. It was brilliant fun and the kids loved watching them!

Day two, the Sunday was a bit of a later start. There was a 10 mile run and then a fun run so there was no rush to get there.

We took a picnic on the Saturday but promised the kids that they could get something from one of the food vans on the Sunday. Becky went for chips & gravy, Ellie chicken noodles, Stu a huge cheeseburger and I had a pork & stuffing burger, then a hot dog later. hehehe

It was a more relaxed day on the Sunday as we had seen all the stalls so just hung around the music tent and the main arena, flitting between the two. The scurry racing was amazing! (Ponies pulling a carriage around a course in an attempt to get the fastest time.) Those little things go so fast and we saw all of the final round. Amazing!

We also saw a Freddie Mercury tribute act. He was such a good entertainer and all of my family are big fan's of the real Freddie and Queen. We were singing, dancing and clapping along.

There was wrestling to watch and the monster trucks. They were good but they took more time setting up the cars to be ran over than actually doing anything. I just thought they ran over anything they wanted but everything has to be positioned exactly which ruined the illusion a little.

The kids wanted to go on this huge inflatable slide and I cringed watching them on it. It was too high for my liking and they were bouncing all over. I couldn't watch and walked off to see what my dad was up to. He was getting his vintage panel van to go for a whizz around the main arena. I got the honour of riding along with him around the ring.

My dad's partner was the first one to notice me in the car, then Stu arrived at ringside and then a few minutes later the kids. There faces were a picture. hehehe They certainly didn't expect to see me there.

It was such a fab weekend. We didn't actually spend that much money with taking a picnic on the Saturday, getting free entry with the guest passes my dad gave us and the kids were rather spoilt and given money by my dad's partner which paid for all their fairground rides. Thankfully they didn't have enough money left at the end of Sunday to play hook a duck. They were going to try to win themselves a goldfish. Eek! lol By the end of the show we were exhausted with all the fresh air and the walking. It took me until Wednesday for my legs to recover but I think we will be back next year!

Monday, 15 July 2019

Our weekly meal plan! 15th - 21st July. #MealPlanningMonday

Last weeks meal plan went OK. We changed things around to what day we ate things but nearly everything was eaten. We did have an unplanned takeaway on Friday from the chip shop. I had burger and chips and it was a good one. Probably the best I've had in years. I also scrapped the toad in the hole for a sausage casserole. I didn't want to be stood in the kitchen faffing around as it was too warm.

We have a couple of appointments this week so I'll be using the slow cooker again. We also have the look around Becky's new college.

This week on the menu we have:

Wednesday - Fish fingers, chips and baked beans.
Friday - Pizza.
Saturday - Slow cooker pulled pork in buns.
Sunday - A roast dinner of some sort or salad if it's too hot.

What are you eating this week?