Saturday, 31 January 2015

Saying Goodbye to Dad

15/4/33 - 30/1/15

It is so hard to say goodbye............but I will remember....

You always found something to make you happy. 

When you lost the ability to raise your hands above your head your response was " I can still lift them to my shoulders." 

When you lost the use of a hand , you said " I still have another hand." 

When you couldn't play your dulcimer any more, you played your harmonicas . 

When you couldn't play your harmonicas , you sang.

You always had a passion about something. 

You still shouted at the rugby on the television , even when you didn't understand the rules anymore.

Your glass was always half full, never half empty when things got really bad.

You loved to make people laugh, right up to the end.

You lived a whole year longer, after the Drs said you were dying. You always were stubborn!

You have always been there and although I know you were ready at the end,there will be a huge hole in our lives - love you and will miss you always Dad. X

Sunday, 18 January 2015


A list of some of the things in life that bring a smile to my face...

( excluding my family and friends of course!)

A loaf of freshly baked bread...

A parcel from Asos...

Rose Gold....


Morning coffee...

Contigo coffee cup ...

My trusty work trolley...

Leather bags...

Coffee Machines..

Freshly cleaned brushes...

Jo Malone candles...

English Tea...

Macaroons - chocolate...

Body Shop Body Butters...

My monthly Birchbox...

This room...

Heatech Tops..

Ambre Vanille by Laura Mercier...

My Filofax...

I could go on.......

Have a good week!

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Everything Stops!

I am loving my job at the moment. However, it is all consuming and once term starts .....

Everything Stops!

I find that any spare moments I have are invested into catch up time.

My contract was for two terms, but as I was asked to stay on, until the summer at least it is going to continue as it is and I will be full time.

So to enable me to plan my time to use every possible second I have invested in .......

a filofax.

I used to have one when I was last working and I find them invaluable. I can fit eveything in and manage everyones calendars from one place. It also satisfies my stationery craving. 

Just look at this stationery  - adorable!

I have gone for the colour themes of black and orange. You either get the stationery addiction or you don't. If you don't , don't try!

I have my desk in the corner of our room as it is the quietest place for me to work at home. It always surprises me that people think teachers don't work at home or during their holidays. I do wonder if they think we just turn up at 9am with a series of wonderful activities for their children to learn from with no preparation! 

My life is colour coded - 3 kids at 3 different schools - highlighters are needed!

I got mine from the filofax site. You get to register your filofax so if it gets lost and someone finds it, the number can be traced back to you and your baby returned! There is so much information in here already the thought of losing it leaves me cold!

The possibilities for additions are endless so do expect updates and forgive me if the stationery obsession bit bypasses you - it is almost up there with my bag and beauty obsessions!

There is something quite pleasurable about writing. I must admit I enjoy writing in my filo. It is not a chore to keep organised. I do believe we are losing the skill of writing and I for one certainly don't get the same buzz out of inputting dates into my iPhone.

How do you keep your life organised?

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

The NutriBullet

What is all the fuss about?

I don't tend to set New Year Resolutions . They just make me feel like a failure as I never am able to achieve what I set myself. However, a few general re set goals never hurt anyone and as most people at this time of year I need to sort out some of my eating habits that have fallen by the wayside recently.

Since returning to work full time in January last year a lot of things have become less of a priority to me. I used to think I ran quite a tight ship at home. I like things neat, tidy and clean. I am organised and rarely forget dates. We eat good , home cooked, healthy meals. 

However, bit by bit things have become a little less organised on the food front with myself. Although on the whole I don't think it's a bad thing to realise that when the winds of change come you can't be unbending and you must change and mould with the times.

 BUT the one area that has slipped and I am NOT happy about is my diet.

 I have kept the home cooked meals going, but I am a bit of a grab what you can, when you can kind of girl when I am working. All of my Eat Clean principles have been taken over by my need for sugar and caffeine and it makes me feel sluggish and lacking in energy. Quite the opposite of what I want to achieve! Over the summer whilst my middle child was in and out of hospital regular meals went out of the window and my weight fluctuated up and down with the stress of it all. The first thing that disappears with me when stress occurs is my appetite.

I do love fruit though and the taste of a juice. However, the problem with juicing in the week is that it is time consuming and messy and I just don't have the luxury of time. I am up at 6.15am making a cooked breakfast for my son who is on a weight gaining diet anyway.

So when I saw this Nutribullet blender I was very tempted. I resisted for a while, but after a bit of research have gone ahead and got it. It is very pretty and cordinates beautifully with the kitchen ( yes I am serious here - if you don't understand dont try !). The plan is to use my Nutribullet in the week and the juicer at the weekend when I have more time.

Additional Cups


Large Blender
 As I understand it the difference between juicing and blending is that juicing takes out the fibre and retains just the pure juice of whatever you are juicing. This gives an instantly absorbed energy boost as there is no fibre to slow digestion down. It is great for a boost, but can lead to unstable blood sugar if not used properly. Blending retains the fibre which gives a more sustained release of energy into your system. The argument is that there is a place for both depending on your need. 

I love juicing - I did a 7 day detox and felt fantastic , but long term it is very time consuming and my life does not allow for it on a daily basis anymore . I tend to start the weekend with a juice which is a real treat now.

The NutriBullet is really simple. You blend in a cup, which you can also drink out of. The blender comes with consice instructions and recipes, explaining how to get the most out of your machine. It is so easy to clean. There is some preparation time, but it is minimal. You can either get your fruits ready and leave them in the fridge the night before ready to turn into a smoothie the next morning or use frozen fruits direct from the freezer. I prefer the taste of the fresh fruits, but again time wise, frozen is quicker before work in the mornings! The fantastic element of the Nutribullet is that you can include nuts and seeds in your smoothies and they blend seamlessly - no gritty bits are left like there would be with a normal blender. The cleaning is also a revelation - 2 minutes and it is done.

I haven't been gifted this - I just researched and decided it suited my needs and I love it! A couple of my friends have since got a Nutribullet and are finding the same. 

My favourite recipe is a simple one just with  berries and a banana to thicken it up:

A couple of strawberries

A small handful of blueberries ( fresh taste best)
A small handful of raspberries ( frozen are fine!)
One small banana
A small cup of coconut water ( or filtered water is fine)
A large tablespoon a fat free bio yogurt

You cut all the fruit up roughly and add the other ingredients.

You turn the bender the other way up and attach to the base unit with a simple twist which turns it on.

When it has reached the consistency you like pour and enjoy . 

Not quite the same effect as a pint of Doom Bar , but a lot more healthy!

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

The Ten Traditions of The Festive Season

in the Appleby household........

All these traditions occur at some point during the weeks leading up to Christmas every year. Somehow it makes it all the more normal!

1.  A last minute panic that I have forgotten someone in the flurry of present buying.

2. The rapid deterioration of the standard of my wrapping. It always starts with such good intent of  pretty ties and ribbons and ends with a present cobbled together with the remnants  of a mixture of different coloured wrapping paper because I can't be bothered to buy another new roll.

3. All children have been yelled at for some inconsequential action and then hugged tightly. All the result of emotions running over.

4. An elaborate Christmas Bake off is planned, ingredients purchased, but instead a bog standard chocolate sponge is thrown together on Christmas Eve as time ran out again!

5. Christmas selection packs are purchased, eaten and repurchased without the children knowing. Ditto for the Baileys .

6. Compulsory argument about who to spend Christmas day with. Every year we vow to go away next year.

7. Tears over who had " eaten ahead " in the joint advent calendar. 

8. Pang of guilt that yet again I have sent no Christmas cards, but reassure myself that I will write New Year letters ( No I won't ).

9. Christmas tree is enthusiastically decorated by the children, then when they are sleeping redone by myself #OCD

10. A ridiculously late night on Christmas Eve wrapping the last of the presents and sipping mulled wine to make sure it tastes ok. Recipe for a thick head every year!

Happy Christmas one and all!