Monday 30 November 2020

(Ad - Gifted) Soft drinks from Soda Folk! - Review!

At this time of year I am always looking for some delicious soft drinks for my family to give us a bit of a treat over Christmas. I always like something a little different and recently I was asked if I would like to try out some soft drinks from Soda Folk.

Soda Folk boxes of soft drinks.

Soda Folk is on a mission to introduce soda drinkers to a world full of flavours that are authentic, honest, natural and true to their roots. Flavours that are versatile, comfortingly familiar but uncommonly different. Sodas that can be enjoyed as they are, with your favourite tipple or in that special ‘secret’ recipe.

I loved the sound of the flavours. Root Beer or Cream Soda are my all time favourite drinks and the fact they are 100% natural and use only premium ingredients is a bonus! 


Grape Soda Folk soda.

The Grape Soda is made with over 50% natural fruit juices, no added sugar and 100% natural ingredients. The result. Refreshing. Sharp. Indulgent!

I am not a fan of grape so this one was never going to be one for me but Stu and the girls loved it. It was their favourite drink of the four by far. Grape soda is something I wouldn't normally buy but this is one I would for my family.

Root Beer!

Soda Folk Root Beer.

Have you tried Root Beer with a splash of real American maple syrup? No? Well now’s the time to find out what you’ve been missing all these years. Refreshingly different. Rich. Rewarding and indulgent. That’s a Soda Folk Root Beer.

Root Beer is a drink I always have as a treat so I like them to be amazing and this one certainly was! The flavours are so strong but not overpowering. I think with the 2 cans which are left we're going to try making Root Beer Floats! You add a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream to a tall glass and pour on the root beer!

Cream Soda.

Soda Folk Cream Soda

Fizzy. Sticky. And stacks of artificial vanilla extract. If that’s the Cream Soda you know, think again. At Soda Folk, they know how a good Cream Soda should taste. Real Madagascan vanilla, not too fizzy, smooth and really, really satisfying.

This is by far the nicest cream soda drink I have ever tasted. It felt like such a treat drinking it and I was selfish apart from letting my family having a mouthful I kept it all for me.

Cherry Soda.

Soda Folk Cherry Soda

With over 50% natural fruit juices this Cherry Soda delivers boat loads of flavour with hints of sharpness and a refreshing but not-too-sweet finish. Made with 100% natural ingredients, no added sugars or artificial thingamabobs, this is Cherry Soda from Soda Folk. Done right. Like no other!

This was so good. Myself and my whole family may have argued about who was going to drink this flavour as it was so delicious. 

These really are brilliant soft drinks. They are something a little different from the usual can's of soda, they're something special. As well as being delicious they are gluten free and vegan friendly so most people can enjoy them.

As well as just drinking these soft drinks as they are you can always add a little alcohol and make a cocktail! 

Here’s how to make the ‘Cherry Noir’ cocktail: 

Combine the following ingredients in a shaker:

50ml Quintay Pinot Noir Red Wine
5ml Sugar Syrup
15 ml Cocchi Torini Vermouth
10ml El Gobernador Pisco

Top with Soda Folk Cherry Soda, and pour in a half pint glass with ice. Garnish with an orange wedge.

You can make the sugar syrup from scratch by mixing the following and leaving to cool:

100g Caster Sugar
50g Hot Water

You can purchase Soda Folk drinks from their online store or via a wide range of stockists throughout the UK including: Amazon, Costco, Sainburys, M&S and certain restaurants and bars.

We were sent the Soda Folk drinks free of charge in exchange for this blog post.

Our weekly meal plan! 30th November - 6th December. #MealPlanningMonday

Our Weekly meal plan.

Last weeks meal plan went well, we ate just about everything but did change Saturday. We needed shopping and wanted some sort of a treat so we got the supermarket bucket of chicken to cook ourselves with onion rings, fries, garlic bread and corn on the cob.

On Friday I did the last of the present buying in the Black Friday sales. I think I got a good deal with Ellie's Nintendo Switch, we certainly saved a bit of money and bought a few other things that I had been umming and ahing over for the last few weeks. With the grocery shopping I bought gift tags and bags so there is no putting off the wrapping now.

On the menu this week we have:

Monday - Orange chicken and rice.
Tuesday - Quiche and baby potatoes.
Wednesday - Bacon and cheese pasta with garlic bread.
Thursday - An omelette using up leftovers in the fridge.
Friday - Fish, chips and mushy peas.
Sunday - Cottage pie.

What are you eating this week?

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Sunday 29 November 2020

The Christmas decorations are all up. #MySundayPhoto

Over the past week we've put all the Christmas decorations up and it's looking very festive in here. I love it especially on an evening when the lights are twinkling on the tree.

Christmas lights on the tree

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Saturday 28 November 2020

Week 48 of #Project366 - A photo every day for a year!

This week we have really got into the Christmas spirit. The decorations have gone up, I finished the Christmas present buying and I've just about finished adding things to the food shop. I am feeling very festive now and very organised! I've never had just about everything done this early. All I have left to do is the wrapping. I can spend the rest of December watching Christmas films and relaxing! hehehe

Now for a photo every day!

My new candle
My fella and youngest getting the Christmas decs out and my eldest wrapping presents
Our new Christmas tree and my youngest washing the dishes
A path and my eldest hoovering the living room

319/366 - 21st November
My birthday! I had a wonderful day and it really was the best birthday. I got a lovely big candle and the wooden wicks make it crackle. It makes me feel so cosy. I don't think it's going to last long.

320/366 - 22nd November
We got the Christmas decorations out and started putting them up. Last year we had 2 little trees which was fine but this year we wanted a bigger tree so we decided to get a new one! I ordered it on Sunday from Argos.

321/366 - 23rd November
Becky is so organised with her present wrapping! She has got us all presents and has just about everything wrapped now!

322/366 - 24th November
Our new tree was delivered. I was worried that it might be too big with it being 7ft but we just kept some of the branches up at the back so it wasn't too far away from the wall. It looks amazing! Bigger is better. hehehe

323/366 - 25th November
Ellie was on a mission to earn extra pocket money to buy some things on Roblox. They are having a sale this week too so she washed, dried and put away the dishes every night since Wednesday instead of sharing the job with her sister.

324/366 - 26th November
The path to my dad's. I went and took him some bread and milk. I left the bag hung on his gate and rang him to let him know the stuff was there. He came out and shouted thanks. He looks tired and having coronavirus has really aged him but he's well on the road to recovery. 

325/366 - 27th November
Becky did the hoovering. It is a job she loves.

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Friday 27 November 2020

This week my Word of the Week is: Festive! #WotW

This week my Word of the Week is:


We have had such a good week, a happy one. I had the best birthday and was spoilt rotten by my family and friends. In fact the whole weekend was lovely. It was just what we needed. Our Christmas preparations are in full swing and I am feeling rather festive!

We had already agreed as soon as my birthday was over the Christmas decorations could go up and on Sunday they did, then more on Monday and on Tuesday. lol On Sunday we decided that the Christmas trees we got last year from our local auction were just not going to cut it. We wanted bigger and better so we ordered one from Argos. A 7ft one for just over £25. It was only after I ordered I worried about it fitting in the living room. It was fine though. It's big but not too big. It looks so festive in here now and we have gone a little over the top but I think after this year we need something like this to cheer us up!

It was confirmed early on in the week that over Christmas people can form a Christmas bubble with a couple of other households. We've talked about it we have decided we're not going to be having any visitors or will be visiting anyone. My dad being ill has scared us all and I don't think Christmas is a good enough excuse to risk getting ill especially after all the hard work we've done over the last 8 months or so. I am still going to cook a Christmas dinner for my dad and his partner and he can come and pick it up then reheat it. Even Becky and her girlfriend have agreed that they are waiting until things are safer to see each other again in person. They say it will be worth the wait and I am agreeing with them.

My dad is well on the road to feeling better after Coronavirus but his partner did start showing symptoms. Thankfully she seems to have got a really mild version of it and is already feeling better than she was a few days ago. I saw my dad yesterday from a distance when I dropped some bread and milk off to him over his fence. He has lost so much weight and looks his age which really shocked me. 

I booked the Christmas food shops a few weeks ago and finally got around to adding what we need to the baskets. I'm getting all the food and drink from Asda that will keep a couple of weeks before Christmas and a delivery from Tesco on the 22nd which will be all the fresh food. I might even slip a shop from Iceland in to get some party food. hehehe

So all that's left to do is buy Ellie her Nintendo Switch which I am hoping to get today in the Black Friday sales and wrap the presents. Considering it's not even December yet I am feeling very festive and very organised.

I hope you have all had a good week!

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Thursday 26 November 2020

My experience of ordering a home test kit for my dad.

 Coronavirus has been out there since the beginning of this year but up until recently I felt pretty safe thinking I was doing everything I could to keep my family safe. Then the 2nd wave hit and it seems to have hit North Lincolnshire a lot harder than earlier in the year. It was only a matter of time before someone I knew was worried about having Coronavirus.

Covid test

My dad started with the virus symptoms on Wednesday the 4th of November over the next couple of days he felt worse and worse, he had all the symptoms and by Saturday he agreed to let me order him a Coronavirus home test.

Ordering the Coronavirus (COVID-19) home test was actually a lot more straightforward than I thought it would be. Simply fill in a form online and wait for it to be delivered.

Great, I ordered it to be sent to his house, obviously and we waited. I could see the tracking and then on Monday it said it been delivered at 3.29pm. I assumed it had been delivered late on in the day, my dad was late in checking the post and was going to wait and test himself the next day so he could catch the post collection without having to rush.

My dad rang me first thing on Tuesday morning asking where the test was. He had checked his post box and his partner did and it was nowhere to be found. He still wasn't feeling great and thinking the test had gone missing he asked me to book him into the drive through test centre. (He was in no fit state to drive over the weekend when I ordered the home kit). He wasn't much better on Tuesday but drove himself there, had the test and drove himself back home.

 In hindsight I wish I had took a screenshot of the tracking because it had said it had been delivered on Monday 9th when I looked. I went to start writing this blog post on the 10th, that Tuesday to take the screenshot and to complain about test going missing only to see that the date on the tracking had been changed!! I am not mistaken. I also don't understand how it was out for over 24 hours for delivery and not delivered.

Home covid test tracking

The test had been delivered at 2.34pm on Tuesday but it was too late then as my dad had already been for the drive through test. 

In hindsight it is a good thing that my dad could drive himself to a test centre but it annoys me that he was messed around with the home test. It makes me feel even more anxious that if myself, Stu or the girls were to get ill we would have to make do with a home test as we obviously couldn't get a lift or public transport and risk infecting people. 

My dad tested positive for Coronavirus and is thankfully on the road to recovery now.

Who we can't praise enough is the NHS Test and Trace woman who rang my dad to check who he'd had contact with. My dad isn't the greatest with his mobile phone and as he was so ill hadn't seen the text message from the Test and Trace people. He spoke on the phone to her and she said that he should speak to a doctor as he was sounding really chesty and his cough should have been a bit better than it was. She said in her opinion he had a chest infection on top of Covid. After a call to the doctor and he was given antibiotics. As well as giving him health advice she spoke to his partner and gave her plenty of advice and phone numbers of people who can help deliver shopping and essentials. The Test and Trace people are so much more than people who just tell you to isolate.

My dad has said when he is feeling 100% fit again he will be complaining about the test being delivered late and I don't doubt he will. It will obviously be my word against theirs but I am sure it will give him something to occupy his mind. hehehe

Have you had to order yourself a home test? How did it go?

Wednesday 25 November 2020

Our Advent Calendars. 2020.

 When I was a little kid my advent calendar had nothing but pretty pictures in. A few years later I started to get one's with chocolates in and I was overjoyed with that. Now there are so many different advent calendars to choose from, not just one's with chocolates.

Advent calendar

In past years they girls have had advent calendars with bath bombs, beauty products, pens and even Pringles in but this year I said they were just getting one each with chocolate in which they were fine with.

When I was in town a few weeks ago I saw some advent calendars in Poundland and as I am doing as much as I can to prepare for Christmas early I felt like I had to get them.

Chocolate advent calendars

They both cost £5 and Becky's is the Reese's one and Ellie's the Celebrations one. They are very pleased with them. They're their favourite chocolates.

Last year I got a candle advent calendar from Home Bargains and loved it. I saw another one this year and thought I would treat myself. The Air Wick Winter Fairy Advent Calendar has 24 Tea Light Candles with 3 seasonal edition fragrances. Mulled Wine, Winter Wonderland and Winter Berries and cost just £4.99.

So now my girls and I had one I had to get Stu one. We couldn't leave him out and I got him the Cadbury Dairy Milk Chocolate Chunks Advent Calendar for around £4.

Air wick advent calendar and a Cadbury chocolate one

After a really rubbish week self isolating after my dad tested positive for Coronavirus I decided that we needed to treat ourselves and the girls had already mentioned what other advent calendars they wanted.

I bought Ellie the Smiggle advent calendar last year and she loved it so it was a given she would ask for it again. The Smiggle Advent Calendar 2020 has 25 days of limited edition Smiggle stationery surprises including - pens, paint sets, keyrings, pencils stickers and lots of other bits. 

The Smiggle Advent Calendar 2020

It was £28 and I manged to get it for £16 when it was offer but it went back up to £25 as of writing this last week but with only a few days before December starting the price will probably drop again and they're quick with their delivery.

For Becky the Friends 24 Doors Memorabilia Advent Calendar from Debenhams caught my eye. She is crazy about anything to do with the tv show Friends so it was perfect.

Friends advent calendar

This unique calendar contains 7 gadget decals, 2 coffee-scented erasers, a trivia quiz, some paper tape, 2 small notebooks, a pen, 3 pencils, 2 self-inking stamps, a to-do list, sticky notes, and 2 magnets. There is also a bonus "Do not disturb - I'm watching Friends" door hanger. 

It was £25 but I bought it on offer for £15 which I thought was quite reasonable and it is much bigger than it looks in the photo above.

I think we're all going to be happy with our advent calendars this year!

Have you got an advent calendar? Which one?

Tuesday 24 November 2020

I was dreading my birthday but it really was the best day!

It was my birthday over the weekend and to be honest I was dreading it. My dad had been really poorly for the previous couple of weeks after testing positive for Coronavirus. I felt guilty for even thinking about my birthday. I was going through the motions but my heart wasn't really there, thinking about my birthday. I had ordered my cake with the food shopping and did get excited about the kids wrapping my presents but I was still worried about my dad being ill. 

Harry Potter birthday cake

On Friday morning my dad had been ill for 16 days with no real improvement from when he was at his worst on day 2 of the illness. He had tested positive for Covid, then had a chest infection and a water infection on top. When I spoke to him on the phone over the past 16 days he struggled to speak without wheezing, coughing and stumbling over his words. He was in a bad way but I never let him know how worried I was. His partner and myself kept it between ourselves.

Anyway on Friday night my phone rang and I knew it was my dad as I had different ringtones set for everyone who matters. I heard his voice and panicked but he said he was OK and was just ringing for a chat!!!

It was the best chat I've ever had. We talked about nothing in particular. Gogglebox, Piers Morgan, Christmas shopping, Football, Tesco and lots of other non-important stuff! Just hearing him speak normally was amazing, he had been struggling to. His chest had been bad and taking wore him out. I cried and said that I was so pleased hearing him because even though he never went into hospital I was really worried about him. He called me a soppy sod which is totally him, he doesn't go in for all the emotional, soppy talk but I think he finally realised how worried we have been about him. 

As soon as I got off the phone I couldn't stop smiling, my dad heading in the right direction to recovering from Coronavirus is the best birthday present I could have had! It set the mood for the whole weekend! Happy, happy, happy! 

I woke on Saturday and opened my pressies from Stu and the girls. They know me so well. New slippers, pj's, socks, candles, an advent calendar, Baileys, chocolate and other bits and bobs!

My birthday pressies

There was fancy coffee and pastries for breakfast, lots of family time which I loved and we skipped the usual Saturday housework which was a treat for us all.

Ellie's best friend knocked at the door mid afternoon with a present from her and her mum which I thought was so thoughtful. It was nice to see Ellie's friend even if it was at a distance. It has been strange her not popping in after school. She's a good lass and I am pleased Ellie has such a lovely friend.

I went for a my soak in the tub and it was amazing! I even had a candle lit. I got to use my new bath set, bath bombs, have a face mask on and lay there in peace. 

Birthday bathtime 2

My dad did ring while I was in the bath, it's a good job I was playing a game on my phone while soaking in the tub so I had my phone. He rang to get the takeaway number and find out the price of food as he had lost his menu. He was fancying some Doner kebab meat. I said he wouldn't be able to get it because there is no option to pay online and he would have to pay in cash which wouldn't be allowed because he had the virus but he said not to worry, he would sort it. He did, the cheeky so and so. He knows the takeaway owner and spoke to him, not just the person answering the phone and said he would drop the money off for the food he ordered when he was better if the food was left on top of his post box. Eesh! We were getting the engaged tone for a good 10 minutes after I finished speaking on the phone to my dad. I just knew it was him hogging the takeaway phone line and chatting. lol Now I know he's really on the mend. Chatting to other people, getting good deals and ordering food.

We had our takeaway and it was so good. I didn't know what I wanted burger or pizza so ordered both. There was leftovers for Sunday so it wasn't a waste. I may have had more than my usual few glasses of wine but so what, it was my birthday and it was one of the best. 

My dad on the mend, I had lots of family time, lovely presents and I went to bed a little tipsy. hehehe

Monday 23 November 2020

Our weekly meal plan! 23rd - 29th November. #MealPlanningMonday

Our Weekly Meal plan

Last weeks meal plan went well. I am still stuffed from the takeaway that I got on Saturday night for my birthday, we ordered enough to feed us on Sunday too and then there was of course cake! Yesterdays roast was cancelled and we're going to have it today. I think it will be the last one until Christmas dinner as I am on operation clear out the freezer in preparation to fill it with food for Christmas, lots of party food and yummy treats! We don't have the most exciting meal plan this week but I have managed to fit in a few of our favourite meals.

On the menu this week we have:

Monday - A roast dinner using up bits that we have in the freezer like parsnips, roast potatoes and random veg.
Tuesday - Sausage casserole and mash.
Wednesday - Spaghetti bolognese and garlic bread.
Thursday - Some sort of casserole cooked in the slow cooker. I have plenty of meat in the slow cooker.
Friday - Chicken curry (out of the freezer) and rice.
Saturday - Pizza!
Sunday - A fry up. Sausages, bacon, eggs, black pudding, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast.

What are you eating this week?

Katy Kickers meal planning linky

Sunday 22 November 2020

A birthday bathtime. #MySundayPhoto

 I have a tradition on my birthday that I get new pj's and always have a soak in the bath. It was my birthday yesterday and I had a lovely day and such a long soak in the tub.

I had some fancy bath bombs from the kids, some new pj's which I picked myself from Primark, Harry Potter one's of course, they're so cosy but not too thick I sweat in them and some bath goodies which I was given as a gift from my youngest girls best friend and her mum! 

Bath bombs, new pj's and bath smellies.

Saturday 21 November 2020

Week 47 of #Project366 - A photo every day for a year!

We have had a better week this week compared to last. My dad still isn't well because of Coronavirus, the chest and water infection he's had but he is so much better than he was. I spoke to him last night on the phone and for the first time in a couple of weeks he didn't sound severely ill. I cried, he called me a soppy sod but it was such a relief. I am worrying less now. My dad is on the mend and we have done our self isolation and got through it without showing any symptoms.

I did some more Christmas shopping yesterday. It is a good thing that you can do your food shop online and buy gifts for people too, not just food one's although I did buy a ton of selection boxes as the Cadbury one's were half price in Tesco. I also bought a couple of treats and a birthday cake for myself.

Now for a photo every day!

Purple hair
The Queen on the TV & My eldest with a card from her girlfriend
A Friends advent calendar and a pile of birthday presents for me.
Mince pies and a Harry Potter birthday cake.

312/366 - 14th November
I was going to re-dye my hair blue but realised I didn't have enough blue left so I mixed some pink and it ended up like this! I am not going to recommend mixing colours but this time it worked out well. Purple is my favourite colour and there are still hints of the blue peeping through when I'm in the light.

313/366 - 15th November
The 4th series of The Crown was released on Netflix and I have already watched it all despite saying I would work through it slowly. It was so good. I did want to hate Camilla but didn't and I really feel for Princess Diana. 

314/366 - 16th November
Becky's girlfriend dropped a card off just to say she was thinking of her and missing her. I thought it was such a lovely thing to do and was very pleased she had the sense not to knock on the door.

315/366 - 17th November
Becky's advent calendar arrived. I bought it from Debenhams for £15. It is filled with things like pencils, notebooks, stickers and things like that. 

316/366 - 18th November
The kids wrapped my birthday presents and gave me strict orders to stay away from them. I have of course had a sneaky feel. hehehe

317/366 - 19th November
It's that time of the year where I go through the mince pies and an amazing pace. hehehe

318/366 - 20th November
My birthday cake arrived with the food shop. I can't wait to eat it! It's my birthday today. Hooray!

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Friday 20 November 2020

This week my Word of the Week is: Better! #WotW

This week my Word of the Week is:


We have been isolating for most of this week after my dad tested positive for Coronavirus. I have felt stressed and worried about my family in case we caught it but we seem to have been lucky. None of us showed any symptoms and Ellie is now back at school.

My dad hasn't had a great week. It seems to be one thing after another hitting him. He got a chest infection of top of Covid, then had a bad reaction to the penicillin, he got some new antibiotics and then the doctor said he was showing signs of being a little dehydrated and might have a water infection. He needs to drink more which he is doing. 

Despite all of that my dad is better than he was. He is still sleeping lots but it moving around more and has got his appetite back so is obviously eating more which is giving him more strength to make himself better. The doctor isn't that worried so we're not. At the moment I can't imagine my dad being fully fit this year but he has turned a corner and is better than he was. He still isn't great but the thought of him being rushed into hospital or worse has passed.

The past week was better than I expected it to be, self isolating. All that was missing was tomato ketchup. I got a shopping delivery on Friday which brought everything we needed apart from the ketchup which I forgot! We ran out over the weekend and I didn't want to bother anyone to bring us some, it's not really essential but boy did we miss it! Bacon sandwiches are not the same with brown sauce. lol 

Ellie was OK with the home schooling. Some days were better than others but she worked hard. We of course argued, mostly about maths. Who thought finding the area of a triangle could cause so much drama. lol It's always maths where we disagree as Ellie has been taught different ways of working things out than I was at school.

I have a feeling this weekend will be better than last weekend. It's my birthday tomorrow! Hooray! The kids have wrapped my presents and cards have been bought. I'm getting a shopping delivery today with a birthday cake, fingers crossed for no substitute and I'm choosing the takeaway for tea tomorrow.

What have you been up to this week?

Word of the week linky button

Thursday 19 November 2020

Top 10 greatest causes of morning stress!

Breakfast is the most stressful time of the day because of tantrums, queues for the bathroom and running out of milk for cereal a latest study shows!

A study of 1,000 parents and their children uncovered a never ending list of early morning responsibilities with more than two thirds feeling there are never enough minutes in the morning. Getting yourself and the kids out of bed on time, getting little ones to brush their teeth and making sure everyone eats well were found to be the top culprits behind morning stress!

As much as I have found ways to speed up the morning routine there is still stresses especially at this time of year when it's cold and seems so dark on a morning. My girls just don't have the motivation and I only have the motivation because I know I don't have to go out into the cold and don't have to do the school run anymore. lol

Top 10 greatest causes of morning stress:

1. Kids not getting out of bed,
Becky takes some nagging to get out of bed on a morning. She is only at college 1 day a week so she see's no reason to get up and rush about. I usually get her up when Ellie has gone to school at about half past eight. Ellie on the other hand is not so good at getting up now. In the summer she's great but if it's still dark and chilly she is very reluctant to move from under her duvet. I have to shout upstairs at least 3 times to get Ellie out of bed at the moment. I can't blame her, I'd rather stay in my warm bed most days. lol

2. Kids getting dressed
Becky is great at getting dressed, she will try to stay in her pj's all day and I do have to nag a little. Ellie is OK at getting dressed as long as her clothes are out ready for her. She get's them ready herself before she goes to bed which is a help but if they're not there in front of her she will faff around and walk around aimlessly unless they are handed to her.

3. Getting the kids to leave the house on time
Becky has to leave the house on time on a college day, if she doesn't she will miss her bus. Ellie is not so great at leaving on time, it feels like am constantly nagging to get her out the door on time. She's never late for school which amazes me but I do worry that she will be.

4. Kids brushing their teeth.
Yes! I have to nag both the kids to brush their teeth on a morning. On an evening they are brilliant but not on a morning.

5. Kids eating breakfast.
Both the girls often walk out of the door with their breakfast in their hands. Becky used to have it sussed, she would take a porridge pot or a cereal bar along with a cup of tea in a reusable cup to eat and drink on the bus but now she has to wear a mask on the bus, that isn't possible. She is now having to eat and drink on the way to the bus stop. Ellie always fights eating breakfast despite her being the one who usually eats the most. She usually has toast. I would rather they both eat a proper breakfast sitting at the table but at least if they have it on the go there is something in their stomach.

6. Finding misplaced items such as school uniforms, school bags or shoes.
My girls are pretty organised when it comes to keeping track of their belongings. I make sure they have got everything ready the night before.

7. Kids putting shoes on.
Ellie really winds me up when it comes to putting her shoes on. She faffs around so much and it can easily take her 10 minutes to put her socks and shoes on. She always finds something really important that she needs to talk about just as she needs to put her shoes on.

8. Getting yourself ready for the day.
I only get myself ready for the day once the kids have gone to school. I think it's easier that way. I know if I was to go and get washed, dressed and feed myself I wouldn't be there to encourage/nag the kids to get ready.

9. Kids having a tantrum.
I think we are past the stage of tantrums now. Hooray! The kids do have their moments when they haven't charged their phones or want extra money.

10. Setting alarm to snooze.
I am so guilty of setting the alarm to snooze. I wish I could stop myself doing it but I can't. I have started going to bed earlier on a school night but so far I am not quite ready to stop hitting snooze.

What are your biggest stresses on a morning?

Wednesday 18 November 2020

(Ad - Gifted) Have an indulgent and tasty festive season with Opies!

Christmas is certainly going to be different this year but I am sure we're all going to make the best of it. One thing I always look forward to is the delicious food. There are certain things that I only buy at Christmas. The obvious things like Christmas cake and pudding but also things like Advocaat, Twiglets, salted peanuts, posh marmalade, fancy cheeses and treats for us all.

This year I have been sent a selection of products from Opies who are celebrating their 140th year in the food business! With families having experienced such an uncertain, challenging year Opies have come up with clever ways to ensure that this Christmas families can enjoy an indulgent and tasty festive season. I think we all deserve this Christmas to be a good one!

Opies hamper

Opies Pickled Walnuts.

A great English delicacy these pickled walnuts are harvested before their shells form whilst they are still green. They are then cooked and pickled in spiced malt vinegar and hand-packed into jars.

Opies Pickled Walnuts.

On Christmas Day Opies Pickled Walnuts add depth of flavour to a Vegan Nut Loaf and can be mixed into stuffing to serve with turkey, duck or goose. On Boxing Day, serve with leftover cold cuts and a cheeseboard selection. There’s plenty of opportunities to finish off the jar once the festive event has passed pop them into a leftover Turkey Casserole, mix into some grated cheddar for a luxurious Welsh Rarebit or just enjoy with leftover cheese.

New Christmas Fruits with Alcohol!

Opies fruits steeped in syrup infused with alcohol have long been a popular festive treat or Christmas gift for a foodie friend. This year, three new luxury fruits have been added to their collection with each taking inspiration from popular and best-selling fruits and alcohol.

Opies Red Berries steeped in syrup infused with Pink Gin!

Opies Red Berries steeped in syrup infused with Pink Gin!

The finest combination of redcurrants, raspberries and sour cherries infused with a delicious yet delicate pink gin. With back notes of juniper, the red berries effortlessly enhance a Gin and Tonic and are absolutely sublime in a boozy ice-cream sundae.

Opies Figs steeped in syrup infused with Luxardo Dark Rum!

Opies Figs steeped in syrup infused with Luxardo Dark Rum!

A classic combination! Juicy figs steeped in the finest dark rum which perfectly brings out rich, indulgent and slightly spicy tones.

Opies Apricots steeped in syrup infused with The Famous Grouse Blended Scotch Whisky!

Opies Apricots steeped in syrup infused with The Famous Grouse Blended Scotch Whisky!

When you combine carefully sourced, sweet juicy apricots with the UK’s best-selling blended whisky the result is sheer perfection.

The fruits infused with alcohol collection make great standby ingredients whether you decide to throw a last minute get together or have a simple need to satisfy your own sweet tooth. Simply top a meringue nest or cheesecake or just accompany a generous scoop of ice cream. Presented in globe jars the collection could also make wonderful gifts for foodie friends and neighbours, grandparents, stocking fillers, teacher ‘thank you’s and Secret Santa.

For the cocktails there is Opies Cocktail Cherries!

Opies Cocktail Cherries

Simply put a cherry into a glass of Prosecco or use to make a simple Daiquiri! 

You can also use them to make succulent cherry scones, cover in chocolate for a homemade gift, chop and add to granola. use to create character noses on top of iced fairy cakes, cheer up home-made Christmas cakes and puddings and use the liquid as a substitute for cherry syrup in cocktails!

You can buy Opies products from selected Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and Morrisons stores and independent retailers and see a whole heap of recipes on their website.

I was sent these jars of Opies products free of charge in exchange for this blog post.