Monday, 15 September 2014

Life lessons as learnt through spiralizing

I'm back. It's been a while. Let's not talk about it?

Now, life lessons. Stick with me on this one...

1) What the heck is a spiralizer?! And what is courgetti?



Granted not the most earth shattering of life lessons but this little gadget - less than a tenner from Amazon - has opened my eyes to a whole host of possibilities for dinner! It's courgetti, my friends, and I couldn't believe I like it as much as I do.

2) Exercise is important if you really like chocolate after dinner.

If you buy this little hand held guy, rather than his bigger, bruiser cousins - then your arm gets a damn good work out at the same time therefore earning that chocolate you plan on eating for pudding {and the courgette is surely better than pasta on the ol' diet front!}.

3) Don't let your eyes be bigger than your belly.

The bigger the courgette, the better. Right? WRONG. Bigger is not necessarily better - especially when it doesn't fit in your spiralizer. What I did learn is straighter is better. {So many potential innuendoes in this post that I have just had to maturely walk away from...it's killing me}

4) Sometimes things don't work out as you planned.

This....


will disappear into a tiny portion {which I forgot to photograph!}. Over plan, buy more than you think you'll need {6 courgettes or so for about 2 people's worth of noodles!}. Failing to plan, is planning to fail and all that.

5) Be open to possibilities

"Can't be a decent substitute for a bowl of pasta" I thought. I was wrong. It absolutely does the job of that comforting bowl of pasta. And not just pasta -

6) Looks aren't everything

Sometimes, these noodles aren't going to look too good but I promise, they're still going to taste good on the inside {I'm eating them for the 3rd time this week, in various guises}. To that end, I don't yet have any photographs of them in food. That's for another time.

7) Be on time

Nobody likes being kept waiting all the time. It's especially true of courgettes. Leave 'em to cook too long and they're going to go mushy. You've been warned.

It's good to be back!

Love B x

Thursday, 13 February 2014

The kitchen

The kitchen

The kitchen by bridget-s on Polyvore

So there were plenty of stored Kitchen pictures to choose from. Clearly I like open shelves, light colours, white subway tiles and natural wood but I also love the personality that comes from little colourful details - like the vintage sign, the patterned tray and the fresh herbs. I like that these kitchens all felt clean and airy without being sterile. I spend a lot of time in our kitchen so I want it to be a place I enjoy and all of the pictures I had pinned all seemed home-y without being twee.

B

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Bathroom

Bathroom

Bathroom

We've lived in our flat for the past 3 - nearly 4 years - and we're itching to buy our own place. We've been lucky in that our landlord has been supportive of us redecorating our flat but it's still not quite the same. For me, this means I'm spending hours pouring over properties {that we aren't in a position to buy yet}. Slightly less tortuous, and probably more productive, is the time spent on pinterest working out what I would and wouldn't like in our home. I thought I'd share some of the clear ideas that have come through for different rooms.

With bathrooms, it's all about the roll top bath {I would kill for a proper working bath right now!}. Greys and whites give a calm, spa-like feel, whilst pops of colour from the green would still make a big impact. Wire baskets for storage and some feminine touches in the vintage mirror and the gold accents would finish it off perfectly. Hopefully the wire accents and the masculine colours from the floor and walls would stop it from being overly feminine!

What do you think?

x



Sunday, 19 January 2014

Moments that mattered...

It has been a LONG time since I last wrote. Since way back in July, there have been plenty moments where I considered starting again having genuinely missed writing. There were also plenty or moments where I dismissed it - too much to do, not enough to write about, a total writer's block on where to start. I wasn't sure I had enough to add to the conversation or anything to say that anyone would want to read but, as always happens with a new year, I've thought about the things I do {or don't do enough of} that make me happy and this little corner of the internet - full of waffle - is one of them.

Reading one of my favourite blogs, this little competition seemed the ideal time to start again. So here it is, without further ado - some of the moments that mattered in 2013. Sit back, it's a big one and there are a LOT of photos.

We started off the year right, celebrating with some of our nearest and dearest. Cooking for 25 was potentially a tad ambitious!




In the Spring, there was a half marathon that showed what you can achieve when you put your mind to it! Bring on this year's...



There was a sister sister holiday too. Undoubtedly those days are up there as some of my favourite days of 2013. It's not often enough we get to spend an uninterrupted long weekend, just the two of us, so some quality time with my sister was just perfect. The added bonus of a visit from my cousins was just the icing on the proverbial cake.



Summer hit, and I graduated for the second time. This one resonated so much more than the first time around. I have met some of the most talented ladies and gents on this teaching course - dedicated, intelligent, caring and hilarious - all of whom I am grateful to have around in this next step down the line.






There was a little holiday in the sun too. Can't complain!






Autumn was quiet - I started my first year in the classroom and for all it is the most challenging, demanding thing I have ever done, I truly love it. Clearly I didn't have that much to take snaps of except these early morning views!



That said, we did celebrate the engagement of one of my oldest, dearest friends. I am thrilled for her and her lovely fiancee and already can't wait to be part of their big day.


Moving onto Winter - there was 5 years with this guy. Happy lady. Enough said.


A trip to the coast before Christmas is always one of my favourite weekends. Christmas ensembles, open fires, old man pubs and some of my nearest and dearest - what more could you want?





Finally we finished off the year as we had started: good friends, good food and good wine. Granted, there was a touch more snow in France....






Taking the time to look back on 2013 actually reminds you how far you go in a year. 2013 wasn't always straight forward or easy, but it was packed with moments worth remembering and it was full of laughter and love. I've loved looking back but I'm even more excited to move forward - 2014 is going to be a good un, I know it!

Love B x



Monday, 8 July 2013

Wise old owl...


Check out this sweet little nightlight that is currently standing guard over my bedside table. He's an adorable little ceramic character and a 'stand in' graduation gift from my Mum as the beautiful lamp my parents bought me hasn't arrived yet. I think he would make for a lovely gift - certainly he holds his own {in my mind} when compared with the rather more expensive ceramic night lights you can buy at the moment.

The best bit? He's 99p from B&M homes. I think I might have to run out to my nearest one and stock up on him for gifts....

Love B x

Monday, 1 July 2013

Strawberry Pavlova


I'm pretty convinced I could live off strawberries through the summer months. All of a sudden, they're available in abundance so we've been devouring them at an absurd rate {a box a day...no jokes}. I'm normally perfectly happy to just work my way through a punnet as is - no need for cream, chocolate or any other additions - but a casual Sunday lunch with friends seemed like an opportunity to jazz them up a bit.

A giant pavlova instantly sprang to mind with it's lashings of double cream, crispy meringue and heaps of strawberries. It is easily one of my favourite desserts and so I set about making a meringue for the first time in my life {ridiculous, no?}.

I followed this recipe, omitting the vanilla essence as I'd already added plenty to my whipped cream. I also ignored the instructions for the fruit. Instead, I hulled and generously sliced the strawberries before sprinkling them with a good amount of caster sugar. Once the tupperware is all sealed up, give them a good shake and them just leave them to it, shaking occasionally just to keep mixing everything together. They will become slightly sweetened and the juice and sugar form just enough 'drizzle' to add to the colour of your pavlova topping.

My mum - a seasoned meringue maker - hammered home the importance of leaving the meringue in the oven until it {the oven} was cool. This is to help it crisp up and dry out. I have to say, making my base I was so worried about it starting to colour that I turned the oven off too soon. Whilst the outside of my meringue was lovely and crisp, inside was practically a marshmallow. Perfectly to my taste, but perhaps not everyone's cup of tea so take note! That said, the recipe was actually very straightforward and easy to follow. Always a bonus, especially when the finished product is so delightfully over the top!

The variations are endless too - alongside this, a contender for my favourite has to be caramelised pecans and caramel sauce. YUM.

Love B x

Birthday cake



I just had to share this beaut of a birthday cake that my sister made for my little cousins. What child wouldn't love a huge chocolate cake, covered in smarties and kitkats? Heck, what adult wouldn't? The bunting was put together in my kitchen over a cup of tea and a natter with Mum just using things I had lying around the house.

Super simple really, but so effective!

Love B x
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