Saturday, 15 July 2017


Barbecued Pineapple Fingers

with a Coconut oil, brown sugar and cinnamon glaze





This recipe is my entry for the Foodies100/Vita Coco #ReachfortheBeach competition


Quite often when we think of a BBQ, we think burgers, steaks, kebabs - but what about the dessert?  With that in mind, this is wear my recipe creation came from. 


Ingredients:

1 Fresh Pineapple
1 Tb sp of Vita Coco Coconut Oil
1 Tb sp of Brown Sugar
1 Tsp of Cinnamon
1 Tub of Natural Greek Yoghurt
1 Tb sp of Desiccated Coconut






















Method:

Chop up the Pineapple into  fingers
Mix the Brown sugar and cinnamon together

















Pat the pineapple dry with some kitchen towel, rub some of the Vita Coco Coconut oil onto each side of the pineapple and then sprinkle generously with the brown sugar and cinnamon mix



















Griddle over a hot BBQ until the sugar has turned a nice golden caramel colour


Add your desiccated coconut to the yoghurt and then serve!





















Enjoy as an easy BBQ pudding 

Friday, 6 January 2017

The Day I won the holiday of a lifetime!

As it's exactly a year to the day, I thought I would write a blog post about my experience of winning a Disney World trip to Florida.

So first of all let me tell you about the competition:

It was a creative photo entry with Heart radio called #facesforflorida.  You had to go online to the heart web page and print off Jamie Theakston and Emma Bunton's face masks and use them in a photo showing a reason why you deserved a holiday to Florida.

Now when something like this pops up and there's a hashtag involved, the first thing I do is see what other people are entering.  I do this to make sure my entry isn't similar and to give me the edge on originality.  The next stage was to think outside the box, like really outside the box....what followed next were two sleepless nights going over different scenarios of photo's in my head..honestly, ask my husband.  It's normally the first thing he tells people!

Well it came to me in a half wake sleep sort of state..so my thought process went like this, you need a holiday in the sun, why the sun?  hmmm because you're ill, generally when you see people who are sick in comics etc. they have the measles, hmm measles, measles, measles and then WHAMMM "Mickey Mouse Measels" was born!! lol 

The next step was to print off some heart logos to add them into my photo, go shopping for a doctors kit and a nurses outfit.

I convinced my husband to let me crayon Mickey Mouse shaped measles on him with a some facepaint sticks (you know the really oily ones, that are incredibly difficult to get off)  I dressed my 10 year old daughter, Jess up as the nurse (Emma) and my husband as the patient (Jamie).  I then proceeded to put them into various poses, see the next series of pictures:




 
 
Ok, I thought these aren't too bad.  Now how am I going to get the message across with needing to go on holiday because of the "Mickey Mouse Measels"  I went onto my phone and looked up how to add captions/speech bubbles to photos and found a great app called "Comic Caption Creator"  it cost about £3 or £4 I think to get the features I wanted.  So I played about with the pictures for a bit until I came up with a catchy strap line and this was my final image that won my family and I the Holiday!! YAY!!
 
 
I had a phone call the day before I won, to ask about my photo, my family and a few other details.  They said they liked my photo and that I had been "short listed" as one of a few winners.  The guy on the phone wanted to make sure I would be available to take the call the following morning "if" they called.  So at this point I was excited but not too excited because I didn't know if I had won or not for sure.  But then I did get a phone call the very next day. 
 
Here's the recording of my reaction:
 

 



We went on our fabulous holiday 4-11th November last year.  Which took in both my birthday and our youngest 1st birthday.  I will do another blog post about our holiday another time.  We had the most amazing time away and we'll all be forever great full for the day Heart radio chose our photo on the 3rd day of last years competition.

I am happy to report that Heart radio are running the same promotion this year.  To find out more about it and how to enter click here:  http://win.heart.co.uk/visit-florida/ and don't forget to double check the T's and C's here: http://www.heart.co.uk/london/terms-conditions/heart-london-faces-for-florida-2017/.  You can also check out Di Cokes blog here for her top tips on entering this competition: http://superlucky.me/2017/01/heart-faces-florida-back/  things are slightly different this year, but head over to Di's post and she'll explain all.

Finally, Heart got in touch with me a few days ago to talk about how it was winning.  You can listen to my little radio interview here:





What are you waiting for?  go win yourself a holiday!! :D

Sunday, 4 December 2016

Our Debenhams Wish List

Today myself, my husband and 4 of our daughters (Milly couldn't come because she was busy with Derby) went to Debenhams to have a look at what we would choose for our Christmas list as part of the Debenhams Win Your Wish List competition.

Our store in Hereford is so beautifully decorated:








 and little Georgia enjoyed wandering around looking at the decorations




It wasn't long before she saw something she wanted to look at



So here's the first thing on Georgia's wish list:

Builder, Princess Palace £10.50



Next on Georgia's list is the:

Lullaby Laa-Laa  Teletubbie £30



and finally a set comprising of her very own First Gadget Set £20.  If Santa brings these for Georgia maybe, just maybe we'll get the TV remote back!



Verity chose a large tub of pick and mix, after all you can never have too many sweet treats at Christmas!

Large pick and mix tubs £18


As Milly wasn't with us I chose this for her:  A Headphone Hat for £15.  Milly is into her Japanese music right now and loves to listen to it wherever we go so this hat would be perfect to keep her head warm whilst filling her ears with her favourite tunes!



Jess and Marnie chose some make-up from the Benefit range - two Benebabes in the making lol! 

It's A Gal's World £29.50



How to look the best at everything £22.50




My husband Antony chose....well he wanted everything that was on the Ferrero Rocher stand but I think he'll settle for the Centrepiece full to the brim with 60 chocolates for £25


And for me, I have fallen in love with the super pink sparkly number from Redherring, a steal at £41.30 - perfect for the New Years eve party!

 
 
For both of us a nice new Festive bedding set for £42
 
 
 
 
 



And finally for a bit of fun I found lots of fun chocolate novelties - these Brussel sprouts were one of them, perfect joke present for another member of the family that doesn't like sprouts!! he he

Chocolate Sprouts £6

 
 
 
and also a chocolate tea pot - one of my Step dads favourite sayings "it's as much use as a Chocolate teapot, this would be great for him
 
 
 
 


I hope you've enjoyed reading about our Debenhams Christmas wish list - what's on yours this year?









Sunday, 3 July 2016

 

I'm a Comper! 


As a hobby I enter competitions on a regular basis.  I comp so I can treat my family and experience things I wouldn’t normally be able to afford.  I’ve also gifted some of wins, which is a great way to save money and treat my friends and family...of course they don't always know it's been a win.  I started comping back in 2009.  Since then I've won a fabulous amount of prizes totalling £25K plus



My very first win was a book worth £5 and then a very nice Kahuna watch worth £30, I went on to win a washing machine worth £579 and some VIP tickets to the Clothes Show.  From then on I was hooked and since that date I've comped on off when I can.

From 2009 through to 2015 my prize total was approx. £7,300 and  it wasn't until I discovered Super Lucky Di's blog  that my comping attitude and strategy changed!

Check out Di's blog for what I consider to be the best advice
you'll ever find when it comes to comping

 
After reading through Di’s blog posts on how to enter competitions and watching all of her tips and tricks on youtube, I won a £10 amazon voucher on a facebook competition.  
With this voucher I decided to buy Di Cokes book “Super Lucky Secrets” .  Since reading her book and taking her advice I have won…..this year alone a whooping total of £18, 500 worth of prizes, including a family holiday for all seven of us to go to Walt Disney World resort in Florida with a £2,500 Disney gift card!!

 
A big huge thank you to Di Coke for creating your blog, videos and book - they have been invaluable to me.  If anyone is thinking of taking up comping as a hobby go and check out Di's you tube channel  and her blog (link above)  I promise if you follow her advise, you won't regret it!

 
Comping doesn’t have to mean spending hours and hours entering competitions.  If you put effort and creativity into entering you are more likely to win and the feeling of accomplishment when you do win is immense!
 
Keep an eye out for the 3 letter magical word WIN - it might just be you next time!

Remember one of the most important things regarding competitions is to believe you can WIN!
 
I guess if you’re as nosey as I am you might want to take a peek at what I’ve won?
So here we have it a link to my Prize list  :0)



Tasty Fish Dish Recipe


Zingy Tuna Stir Fry
Serves 2 – Prep Time 15 Mins- Cooking Time 10 Mins

Ingredients


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
2 x 160g can of tuna in sunflower oil, drained
3 x spring onions, finely chopped
1x ½ red pepper, finely chopped
250g of courgette spaghetti (or 250g of courgette cut into thin strips, a vegetable peeler works well to do this)
325g of pre-cooked rice noodles
2 tbs of sesame seed oil (for cooking)

 

Dressing

3 x tbs of set honey
3 x tbs of teriyaki soya sauce
2 x tsps of ground ginger

 
Method
 
Add a table spoon of sesame oil to a frying pan, heat then add your chopped spring onion and red pepper, stir fry for 2 mins then turn the heat right down and add in the drained tuna, warm through for 5 mins.

 








































Whilst the tuna is warming, add a table spoon of sesame oil to a large wok or frying pan – heat then add rice noodles, toss in the hot oil for 1 min, add courgette spaghetti, continue to toss in the oil for a further 4 mins – I like to add a little splash of soya sauce at this stage too!

 




















Put the honey, soya sauce and ginger in a small microwavable dish and microwave on high for 10-20 seconds (or when melted and warm)



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 


Take everything off the heat – arrange the courgette and rice noodles on the plate, spoon over the tuna mix and drizzle heavenly with the sweet zingy warm sauce and enjoy!

 



 



 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Easter Actvities

We had fun making some great things this Easter.  Jess blew out her first egg in preparation to decorate it. 




I searched a few blogs to find recipes for easter treats and came across this one at: http://hungryhappenings.com/2016/03/peanut-butter-fudge-filled-chocolate-easter-bunnies.html/

Unfortunately ours didn't turn out quite like Hungry Happenings but they did taste pretty amazing and were fun to make.  I just couldn't seem to get the consistency right on the chocolate ganache, every time I tried it came out solid!  Ah well we just ended up molding it around the peanut butter fudge balls in the end.  Because I didn't have a hope in making moulding chocolate, especially after the ganache disaster! I used Cadburys buttons for the feet and Cadburys mini chocolate fingers for the ears.


The children had fun decorating their blown out eggs, here's some of the designs they came up with:

Jess's Shopkins Eggs

Vel's, Mr Bean and Mrs Bean :D



We also had a go at making string baskets to home our small chocolate eggs, these were fun to make but they didn't really turn out as we planned.  I think next time we need to add more glue than water and needs loads more string!





We also made some Miffy Bunny marshmallows and some other sweet treats


Even Georgia got involved with a hand and foot print Easter Bunny!


So that concludes our Easter Activities for this year.