Monday – Nectarine and Mint Muesli Smoothie

 In keeping with the healthy eating I’m having smoothies this week for breakfast. 

Today’s is low in calories, packed with antioxidants and low in cholesterol.

Nectarine and mint muesli smoothie (300kcal)

Ingredients

  • 2 nectarines
  • 1 handful of mint leaves
  • 25g unsweetened muesli (I had Tesco’s own with apple and berries)
  • 2 large strawberries
  • 200ml Alpro coconut original with rice
  • 1 tbsp 0% fat Greek style natural yoghurt 
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup ice

Whizz and enjoy! Have a great Monday!

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Cheese Lovers Day

Hey guess what! I have just found out its #cheeseloversday – awesome! Surely this means I can skip the healthy eating for one day and indulge?! 

Reposting some cheesiness in celebration…..

Cheese member

Check out these recipes and celebrate this wonderful day…

Welsh Rabbit

Easy Cheesy Mushrooms on toast

Halloween Playlist

  
Next up – The Playlist!

It’s taken me a while, vetting the songs, as some of them are a bit too explicit, to find a playlist which is suitable for children’s ears, but I’ve finally settled on this…..I think….

I’m not entirely convinced there wont be extras added in by the time Saturday comes, but so far I’m confident there are enough songs on here to keep everyone happy. A particular favourite of mine and the kids is Boris the Spider – it seems to amuse them and they love singing along!!! Lol!

Check it out on Spotify: 

Halloween Playlist

…and enjoy! 

Happy Halloween!!!!! 👻🎃

Halloween Special -Games 

 it’s drawing near….I’m getting more and more excited by the day….We are hosting a small Halloween party on Saturday and I’m trying to think of games we can play to keep the kids (and adults) entertained. 

1. Try to get the worm out the jelly using only your mouth 

Not exactly the most catchy of names I know, but I don’t know what else to call it?! Blind Jelly Surprise? Our first experiment was to try to get the worm out of a jelly using only our mouth – this proved far too easy for Bear, who’s 6, so we thought we would try it blindfolded and on Boo, 4!!! For adults and children alike….this is how little Boo got on…friends reading this: your turn on Saturday!!! Thinking about making it a team relay! 

 
After thinking about this and realizing that trying to find 20+ blindfolds might prove tricky, and that everyone might really hurt their noses if they go in aggressively, I think maybe we will just do it in the dark! 

2. Torchlit Treasure Hunt

Hide lots of little sweets out in the garden (I’ll be using gold/silver chocolate coins as they should be easier to find) and get the kids go try to find them using torches. Great for indoors too with all the lights off if the weather is rubbish. Remember to keep some coins aside for the little ones who might find this more tricky. I plan to tell them that once they’ve found 5 that’s their lot so everyone gets their fair share.

We tried this indoors tonight and the kids loved it!

3. Pin the Wart on the Witch

Speaks for itself really just an adapted version of the tail on the Donkey.

4. Musical Statues – Halloween style

Of course I have a Halloween playlist for this, which I’ll post later. Cut out or make small pictures of witches hats/ghosts/cats whatever takes your fancy, and put them on the floor. This is just like musical statues, but when the music stops, the kids (and adults) have to stand on a picture, obviously take a picture away every time someone is out. A small treat for the losers and a big treat for the winner!

That should keep us busy for a bit….

Lollipop Spiders – Halloween special!

Halloween – one of my favourite times of the year! It’s at this time of year I wish I lived in America – they do Halloween so well!

I find myself constantly on Pinterest looking up crafty bits for the kids to do, home made costumes, make up, decorations, food ideas, basically everything!!!

Today we tried lollipop spiders. So simple, takes about 3 seconds for grown ups – 3 hours for children and their tiny fingers. No, seriously, it’s simple, even the kids can do it.

All you need is lollipops, black pipe cleaners and stick on googly eyes (and scissors and glue)  

      

Basically all you do is:

  • Take 2 pipe cleaners and cut them in half
  • wrap 2 of them together round your lollipop stick
  • Spread out the ends and turn them over at the very ends so they stand up
  • Stick on a couple of googly eyes

Hey presto!

  

If you need any more tuition than these simple instructions check out this link on Pinterest

 http://www.iheartnaptime.net/spider-suckers/

International Menu Week – kids dinner ideas


The children have requested an International Menu Week again soon. We did it once before and it was a great success, with the kids eating all except one dish (French cheeses) of the food we had prepared. The children choose the countries and look up the national dish (or even just a typical dish of that country), then pop it on the menu. It’s nice to have a change from the normal staple foods and they seem to really enjoy learning about other countries.

I get them to draw the flags, write the dishes down themselves and the language they speak in each country, sometimes I ask them to find out how to say hello in their language too, so a little bit of playing schools, which they love. Then they also help to cook the dinners where they can.

I also found something today which I might try too. A blog showing all the food holidays! Every day is a food holiday – I particularly like that my birthday is ‘eat what you want’ day!

Feeling a bit ‘bleugh’ today so today’s – mulled cider, has cheered me up a bit, just gotta find some now! Where the hell do I get that from???? There aren’t any Christmas markets yet. Looks like I’m going to Borough Market at lunchtime today!

Check out what you should be eating on your birthday!!!

Foodimentary

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Vegas! Day 4

    
Ahhhh our last full day in Vegas. We started the day with a long lie in; feeling refreshed, we set off for brunch at Hash House a Go Go, never seen anywhere so popular! The queue was huge but we got seated within half an hour, sipping a good spicy Bloody Mary while we waited. 

This place is well known for huge portions and was featured in Man v Food so you can imagine, if you watch that, the sort of sizes we are talking about! Not sure a massive brunch like this is the best thing just before jumping off the Top of the Stratosphere! 

The big moment – the Sky Jump. I was pretty nervous but determined I wouldn’t chicken out. Let me tell you, standing on a platform 855 feet high (108 floors up) in the open air is pretty daunting. They count you down and you step off the platform on ‘go’. Aaaaaaargh. It was amazing! I actually felt like I was going to burst into tears when I reached the bottom, it was such an emotional experience. I would urge anyone going to Vegas who’s not afraid of heights to give it a go! 

View from the top – yep, I jumped off there! 

  

A quick flutter in the Stratosphere casino and a bowler hat purchase later and we went off to the South premium outlet stores to spend our winnings and get prezzies for the kids.

Beardy looking rather swanky in his bowler, just need to get him a cane now.

  
After shopping we went back to the hotel to get ready for dinner, thought we’d try the Wynn as we are there for Le Reve tonight….

What a lovely hotel, the entrance was all lit up with a tree tunnel with fairy lights and fresh flowers. We treated ourselves to a bit of fine dining at the Lakeside restaurant; clams and steak for me, delicious! 

  
Lastly, what a better way to end our stay in Vegas than to watch the wonder that is Le Reve! From the moment it started I was captivated; I’ve never seen a show that is so unbelievably visually stunning, we weren’t allowed to take photos during the show but I managed to get one afterwards of some of the scenery (below). I cried about 24 times throughout – it just took my breath away. I cannot recommend it enough; I would pay to watch it again and again! A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!

  

Vegas! – Day 3

  

  

Got up a bit later today after a much better nights sleep and was excited about having a buffet breaky in the hotels ‘Wicked Spoon’. After I’d got over the shock of breakfast costing $82 we were shown to our table and told to help ourselves. Ok. Well let me tell you, breakfast was obscene! So much choice, sushi, belly of pork, Mac n cheese, pancakes, pastries, salads….there was sooooo much! I tried to eat as much as I possibly could, to get my money’s worth, but had to stop after my 17th plate as I was slowly becoming more and more wedged into my chair. I felt like I was taking on Adam Rickman in the ultimate Man vs Food challenge!

Sun’s out – Guns out! Literally!

9.30am we were picked up by a Humvee for our trip to Battlefield Vegas for our shooting experience. 

   
  
I know, I rock a gun right?! Lol. Another pretty amazing experience.

We decided to have an early morning flutter when we got back, no time is a bad time for gambling. So, not being a particurly high roller, in went my $20. I only went and won $607!!!!!! Fuck yeah! (Sorry Mum but that is definitely worth an f word!) Iain then went on a Blackjack table, straight in with $100! Calm down! He was down to one $25 chip, could he pull it back? I was doubtful but he proved me wrong and walked away (because I made him) with $400! Coolio, that covers last night!

Another sit round the pool with the beautiful people, feeling completely fat and ugly, a quick slice of pizza, which probably explains the fat part of the previous statement, and then off to browse the other hotels again. No naps today! WE ARE HARDCORE!

Penn & Teller tonight at the Rio, amazing goldfish trick, and another few hundred on Roulette, sadly not much winning going on tonight. 😦
Finished the night with a scrummy dinner at The Cheesecake Factory. They do not wear green and yellow.

Two things I know for certain about Vegas:

  1. You will go home twice the size as when you left.
  2. You haemmorage money.

Vegas! – Day 2

  
Wow! What a day we’ve had today. 

We started by having a really crap nights sleep, which left us wide awake at 6am, so we got up in search of a hearty breakfast and stumbled upon Mon Ami Gabi. Highly recommend if anyone is going to Vegas. Our hotel restaurant didn’t open til 8am so this was a lovely little find opening at 7, to watch the world go by, on the veranda right opposite the Bellagio.

We were getting picked up at 8.40 for our first exciting experience of the trip, and firstly, I must thank my Mum and Dad for this – my wonderful birthday present – a helicopter ride over Vegas, the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead touching down in the Grand Canyon for a spot of lunch and glass of champers! Amazing! As you can see by the photos. I’ve discovered that it’s very hard to take a crap photo of the Grand Canyon. 

Beardy was a little nervous and wasn’t completely reassured when Dave, our pilot, came to greet us (Beardy had pointed out he was really old) and Dave openly admitted that he was probably the oldest helicopter pilot in the WORLD! Chances of him collapsing mid flight dramatically increased! Luckily that didn’t happen and I’m here to tell the tale. I have to say I am completely in awe of the Grand Canyon – just beautiful!

   

    
 

When we got back we had a little sit by the pool, Strawberry Daquiri in hand, and endured the scorching midday heat. That lasted about 3 minutes, both the Daquiri and the sit by the pool. A half hour power nap in the room and we set off for the Venetian for a Gondola ride (inside) serenaded by our Punter, or whatever you call the man with the stick and the stripy top. It was weird, in a good way; inside is basically outside but air conditioned, the ceilings are painted to look like the sky, the canals run alongside the shops and the floor is cobbled. Pretty amazing.

A little flutter in the casino ($10 on a Big Bang Theory slot machine) gave me $50 win! Woop. This could be the start of my lucky streak.

Next – Fremont Street! This is my new favourite place in the world. Live music courtesy of Yesterday, an awesome Beatles tribute band with a George Harrison whose resemblance to Howard from Big Bang was uncanny (but with a porn tache).

    
Fremont street was teeming with loveable winos dancing in the streets to the live music. One of them, in a wheelchair, got up and started dancing, clearly highlighting the fact the wheelchair was unnecessary. We found it amusing, but Beardy even more so when he turned around and we could clearly see by his stained white shirt that he’d, how do I say it nicely? nope. Can’t. Shat himself. Lovely. Seriously though, it’s an amazing place, sitting outside in a bar, listening to free AMAZING music, people watching is exactly the sort of night I love. 

  
We had a flutter in the Golden Nugget. $40 in. $226 out. BAM! Beardys new moto ‘you win it. I lose it’ seems to be working.

We finished the evening off with a meal at Casa di Amore, a bit off the beaten track but definitely worth a visit! 

And we are spent!

Zzzzzzzz

Vegas! Day 1

  
I’ll be updating these posts as and when I do things so apologies if they’re a bit disjointed…..

What a completely different experience it is travelling without children. I have been to the toilet twice since I’ve been at the airport and not once have I been asked to check anyone’s bottom is clean or had to shout at someone to close the door before I’ve pulled my knickers up. It’s a refreshing experience.

I have bought myself a crossword book and am overly excited about a flight with no kids and watching a film with no interruptions! (And spending some quality to with Beardy of course)…..

So, How long have they offered unlimited free alcohol on long haul flights and had proper cutlery? Beardy laughed at me when I asked him if he had any money on him to pay for our drinks….

We landed about 7.30pm Veags time, which is 3.30am my time and with barely any sleep I’m exhausted but excited about what Vegas offers so I’m not yet showing any signs of irritability! 

We get through customs and immigration speedily, racing past all the other passengers (we ran). Typically though Beardys case is the last one out! But no matter, we have Samuel L. Jackson as our taxi driver so all is well! 
Arrive at the Cosmo and have a wander about, checking out the spectacular Bellagio fountains and getting a speed lesson on how to play craps with one of the croupiers. Lose $40. 

Have what tastes like a quadruple vodka and take a slow stroll back to our room with our $7 bottle of water.

We both collapse into our giant Marshmallow bed which hugs us til we fall asleep (for an hour before waking again…..and again….and again)

Can’t wait for tomorrow.