A Flicker of A Sweet Memory

It’s funny what you remember when you miss someone.

My Nana passed away sometime ago, while I was still at university studying (fat lot of good that venture did, but that’s another story). My dad’s mum, my nana was a larger than life character. Mum of boys, larger drinker, lipstick wearer and experimental cook. I knew I got my attitiute for cooking from someone, and I’m so giving my nana some of the credit.

I can’t even tell you what made my mind wonder to her sausages and flying saucer eggs today, but I found myself laughing as I remember dinner times at her flat. It was a smokey affair, she chain smoked when she chatted but because she had the window open as she did it, of course it wasn’t that bad (we would cringe now). Anyway, I digress. She owned a George Forman Grilling Machine. Or, in her words “George Formby Grilling Machine” she loved the thing, and it got used a hell of a lot.

My brother and I were always fussy with what we ate at nanas house, mainly as the older she got the more interesting the combinations became and the more the food tasted like smoke. She was however, a fabulous cook in her hay day. We ended up having chip pan chips, homemade of course or pancakes, finished off with crisps, chocolate and yogurt. All healthy stuff! My dad was subjected to actual real dinner, and this particular night was rather spectacular. I remember her wafting through the living room with dad’s plate in hand before plonking it down on the table. On the blue and white crockery was a breakfast for dinner. A staple of her household and very much enjoyed.

On dad’s plate there was a fried egg (sunnyside up), tomato, beans, bacon and what looked like two burgers. My dad stabbed one the burgers and held it in the air asking what it was. My nana asked him what the hell he was playing at waving that sausage about. We were hysterical, well all apart from my nana who was completely confused about the laughing. Dad asked why it was so flat, so she demonstrated her Formby Grilling skills in the air at the table.

She’d only gone and put butchers style (the really chunky, fat kind) sausages in the grill and squashed it down until the machine cliped shut. She returned to the kitchen to put her own meal together.

In the meantime there was the fried egg. Same meal, same day. Dad struggled to cut the white of the fried egg so picked it up to see what was going on. Turns out this egg had been fried to with an inch of it’s edible life. It stayed perfectly flat as he picked it up. He starts making his idea of UFO noises as the yolk balances on it’s white plate like shelf with a slight yellow wobble. Again, both me and my brother fell about laughing while dad tried to put back on a straight face as nana came to the table with her own dinner.

I still remember the smell of her pressed powder, the shade of her lipstick, her choice in skirts and how she always wore a pinny over them. Her kindness and patience. Her spoiling us and caving to our every request for sweets as children. I remember having to watch the snooker when it was on because she loved it but then she’d let us watch the Simpsons over dinner time and let us sit of the sofa instead of at the table with our food. I miss her, her accidental funny anecdotes and the liverpudlian twang that still remained from her younger years in her voice. The raspy cough and the way she would order herself two halfs of larger instead of a pint just because it wasn’t lady like to order a pint (but it was okay to sit with two drinks).

I miss her – photo from my 18th birthday meal. A day of mixed emotions, I lost a dear friend that exact day.

What sweet memories do you hold of a missed love one? I’d love to hear a story or two.

Xoxo, L

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In Hiding

I hid from the world today.

Anti-social side came out and I actually avoided going out doors. Uncharacteristic at the moment as I go out every day. I am, for sure, on a down day.

I’ve changed up my workouts which was an undoutable win. I was shuffling about on YouTube and found some amazing yoga and HITT workouts that made me sparkle (I don’t sweat, I sparkle). I’ll be picking this up again tomorrow as I really enjoyed it.

However, yoga sequences are kinda difficult when you’ve a child climbing on you. Having to watch a Yoga tutorial from downward facing dog with your media player up high so the baby can’t grab, then having to fend her off when your doing a warrior pose – believe me it’s a workout within a workout. I’m aching regardless, means it’s working though right!

Strange fact of the day, turmeric in porridge (almond Milk, not cow’s) mixed with a little cinnamon and soya yogurt actually tastes half decent. I’m not talking tons of the stuff, just a 1/4 teaspoon in 1/2 cup of oats. Pretty good, and yellow as aposed to any form of pink or purple porridge makes a refreshing change. Turmeric is a fab antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory properties too, so great to add in to your diet. Who doesn’t love an antioxidant.

I’m going to work on my mood, I really don’t relish the thought of being down.

Xoxo, L

Peppermint Crispy Crunch & Village News

I’m in to preparing snacks at the moment, and following my recipe for energy balls yesterday I gave another couple of recipes the once over this morning. I managed to stock up my freezer and fridge with low cal snacks.

One of our faves at the moment is a peppermint crispy crunch bar. So easy to make and low calorie to boot. I used a loaf tin to make my crispy crunch in, but use what ever is good for you. I’m all about the improv here!

Ingredients (7 serves at 80 cals per serve)

50g Dark Chocoalte (I used 72%)

1 Table Spoon of Coconut Oil

1 Table Spoon of Honey

1 & 1/4 Cups of Puffed Rice

2 Table Spoons of Desiccated Coconut

Method

Melt the coconut oil, chocolate and honey together in a bowl over a simmering pan of water (bain marie).

Mix together the desiccated coconut and puffed rice, then pour over the glossy chocolate combo. Coat all the dry ingredients thoroughly with the chocolate combo. Once mixed, put in to your choice of pan. For this I used a loaf tin lined with cling film with enough over hang to cover the top of the mixture. Press the mix down into the tin till the rice puffs crush slightly, this will ensure that it all sticks together. Set for a few hours in the fridge and cut in to 7 bars/chunks/shapes of your choosing and enjoy with a cuppa.

Thank me later.

In other news, we’ve just had a riot of sirens all around us and an air ambulance over head.

Source’s say that there has been a head on collision close to where we live. I believe it was a police chase with drug dealers. An entire section of road has been taped off. Ambulance, police and fire services are all at the scene attempting to cut a young woman out of a car. I’m hoping that no-one is seriously hurt, especially the victim. There’s another load of victims from what started out as a petty crime in our village. (Picture not my own).

The impact on the families surrounding this incident will be immense. Sending warm and well wishes to anyone involved.

Xoxo, L.

Milk

I’m avoiding milk.

Monday is my weighing day, and although I’ve lost inches my weight was the same as last week. I highly doubt that it is the same. I was bloated and have been all day and the only thing I can attribute this to is the hot chocolate I had last night which was made with cow’s milk rather than almond milk. So I’m disregarding cow’s milk from my diet in hope to resolve the issue. I hate being bloated.

The after math of no number shift on the scales was a bad mood. I’m truly behaving. I’m not eating anything processed or high cal, I’m drinking tons of water and herbal tea over anything caffeinated. So bloating can do one. I really don’t there are too many benefits from cows mill anyway. The more I read, the more I think it’s best to kick it to the curb. So here goes.

Under a mountain of washing and a building aneixty (family interferences), Delilah and I survived the day. I’m wishing those teeth of hers make an appearance and stop disrupting my happy go lucky girl. She’s being a right grump. Napping more than normal, off her food but drinking more milk again and just more difficult in general. Come on teeth, where are you?!

Here’s Aro, being a little angel. Daft pup. He is such a gentle soul.

I have to prep some snacks for the rest of the week. My choice is mint choc crunch and energy balls.

Energy Balls

50grams of Oats

50g of shredded coconut

180g of pitted dried dates

Add everything to a food processor and blitz. The mixture will be crumbly but tacky enough to hold together when pressed in to balls. Divide the mix in to 6 balls, one ball is approx 185 cals.

Enjoy!

Xoxo, L.

Success!

This morning was a boost. Those who know man and I, know our daughters namesake is the song ‘hey there Delilah’ by The Plain White T’s. I always hash tag #heytheredelilah on photos of her and today ThePlain White T’s commented and followed me on insta!! I’m so freaking happy. So much love

Meeting success!

I managed to get in all my questions and queries asked. It did help that the lady I met with was a true pro. A woman after my own heart. Organised, taking notes, friendly, listened and spoke (it’s normally one or the other). She was lovely. It was a pleasure to meet with someone so professional. I even managed to get into my work trousers (pre-preggers trousers) for my meeting. I felt great.

Man took an impromptu couple of days off, which worked out great too as he could take care of Dela when I was at my meeting. Dela had a few hours with daddy, visiting her great grandparents on his side of the family.

It’s the first time man has been alone with baby sincd September last year, and she was about 6 weeks old when that happened and as you can imagine she has developed since. So now 9 months (ish) old and first daddy daughter day. I packed her snacks and milk, knowing they’d be out over snack time and most likely over lunch because there is no regard for time and daddy is on his own watch (and only his watch).

I could lie and tell you I wasn’t nervous, but the fact of the matter was I was shitting bricks. Not because Dela would be alone with daddy, but because great grandparents like to feed great grandchildren shit, because they can be very ‘in face’ (I know because my grandparents are very much like this), because I have no control over what happens when my daughter is not in my care.

Relinquishing control is hard. I am a self confessed control freak. Despite my laid back appearance (and approach with certain things) I am 100% in control. I don’t like to rely on anyone else, and if I want something done I would rather do it myself than ask someone else. This could be seen as independence, which is something I’ve always been proud of and I suppose in a way I’m proud to be a control freak too.

I’m going to work on taking away any negative connotations of the term ‘control freak’ in my mind. That’s my goal for the rest of this week.

Being in control is nothing to frown at especially when we’re talking about your own children, your own life and the situations that you can control. I’m not (I can already hear your cogs turning) saying for one second you can control everything, but for the things you can – I say, steer away!

I digress.

After my meeting, I hot tailed it home to take the dog on a walk. He walked amazingly well for a change, and so did I. I found myself strutting. Dela enjoyed her morning with daddy. She didn’t starve, she wasn’t fed anything sugary and she was okay and full of big smiles when she came home for me.

Made a super healthy version of beef nachos using a wholemeal tortilla baked as my nacho chips. So good. Squeezed in making some healthy snacks, no bake peanut butter bars and oat and date energy balls. HEALTHY! Dela loves the energy balls too and they are literally 3 ingredients and too easy not to make.

It was a good day. In fact I would go as far as to say it was an awesome day.

Xoxo, L.

A Whole Lot Better

Feeling a whole lot better today. Well this afternoon at least. Strangely when the clouds came over and we had a dash of rain, that’s when my mood lifted. Delilah was a moody mare all afternoon, so when she fell asleep on my chest my heart melted and I was back to myself again.

We spent a morning at the park with my mum, Em’s, my godmother and my oldest friend’s son. It was great to see them after so long, they’re over from Canada. The kids played in the park while the adults chased after them. Lunch was nice, the cafe there does really lovely salads. Sticking healthy still, and winning at it. Although mum posted a picture on facebook of me pushing Delilah on a swing and I look like a whale. It was such a bad angle. Please get my good side in future mother! I felt I was doing so well until that picture.

Got a load of washing done, and cleared the kitchen clutter. Metaphorically speaking I guess I cleared some mind clutter too.

My plight with the healthy didn’t stop at a lunch time salad either, Man ordered in. A huge pizza and a milkshake too. I resisted and made a tuna pasta bake for one. Which was made with wholemeal pasta, veg, tuna and all in a simple tomato sauce. It was super filling and tasty. I’ll be making that again. Demon dog licking his doggy lips in the background of my dinner snap.

For now I bid thee good day and farewell till the morrow.

Xoxo, L.

Self Care

This week I’m running on empty. Tired, in need of a little me time and I’m finding it impossible to make any time for that. There is always something that needs doing, for baby, for Man, for dog or for the cats or even someone else.

Right now is literally the first time I’ve properly sat down all day. Not sure I’ll even get a breather tomorrow as man is out playing army with his friends. So taking advantage of the ‘right now and currently giving myself a pedicure. Although it’s only going to be half of one because I forgot to get nail polish remover and I can get rid of the old polish. That repainting is going to have to wait until tomorrow evening. I’m sat here with my feet in water, sugar scrub and lotion at the ready. A little bit of bliss in a bucket. Might even stretch and gel polish or Jamberry my nails this evening. It’s amazing what a mani or pedicure can do.

The older I get and the more everything else becomes a priority, the more I understand there is value in self care. The five minutes stolen when Dela is napping and I’ve rushed to get the kitchen cleaned, that five minutes for a hot tea, an actual comfy seat is very much needed. So when she wakes up as soon as bum hits the sofa, I’m a grumpy mummy bear and no mothettrucker better cross me for the afternoon.

I spent the morning with my Dad while Rob was at work. We went to B&Q to buy some maisonary paint and metal paint. I’ve set myself the mission to paint my outside window sills and garden gate. Got back to my house so my Dad could admire the new front door, took care of dinner for Delilah and Dad and then Man when he got home too.

I knew we were eating out for dinner this evening, because of the belated birthday meal with the family for grandad. I stuck to really healthy options again all day. Oats for breakfast, yogurt and fruit for lunch and a salad while we were out which was difficult to eat as Delilah had her hands in it. Although the salad was the lowest calorie dish on the menu, I was disappointed I had wasted 500 cals on it. I think I would have much preferred a chip or a singular bite of burger, or even 2 and a half pasta shapes. I’m glad I stuck healthy though; every cloud!! I better have lost weight or inches on Monday when I jump on the scales and do measurements. I have not deviated one bit, I’ve moved my butt every day and I’ve drunk a ton of water. So here’s hoping!

I have saved about 150cals for this moment. I made some mint bubble crunch and it’s lovely, healthy (ish) treat. It’s going down with a very green tea.

Happy Saturday. Try sneak in ten mins just for you.

Xoxo, L.