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Friday, 30 March 2018

Made Me Happy This Week

made-me-happy-this-week

I'm feeling very British this week, we seem to be talking about the weather non-stop, much like the stereotypes say we do. But to be fair...it's bloody crazy! Rain, beautiful sunshine, insane wind and hail -all in one day, but never mind. I'm really looking forward to this weekend, partly because of the Easter treats, but mainly because we have such a fun weekend ahead of us. We have family up on Sunday for Easter lunch, and as per usual I've gone a little over the top with the decorations. On the table right now there is a grass table runner - fake obviously, real would be far too messy, and I found little wire daisies to stick into it. As well as treats people can enjoy, and a new bits like garlands and bunny decorations. Then, on Monday, I'm taking everyone to see my wedding dress!! I can't tell you how excited I am for them to see it, I hope they love it as much as I do. We have lunch planned for afterwards, so it should be a very nice day. What are your Easter plans?

1. Finally some spring sunshine (see, again, weather). But we have had some beautiful days recently, and it's been lovely, it makes mornings so much easier.

2. Picking up an Easter egg from Hotel Chocolat. It's my absolute favourite chocolate, and I'm pretty sure that's what I'll be having for breakfast on Sunday morning.

3. Pottering around garden centres with Paul. He's planning a few things for the garden this spring, so we've been looking at a lot of plants. I'm most excited about the possibility of raspberries!

4. My new linen trousers from Topshop that I've gone from being unsure of how I feel in them, to being in love with them! They are perfect for spring.

5. We picked up some new Easter plates in TKMaxx last weekend, and whats even better, is that they were in the sale. The match the serving platter we have, and I intend to make full use of them all this weekend.

6. New salt and pepper grinders. Not the most exciting thing in the world, but the old ones were driving me mad! They left mess everywhere, and thankfully these ones don't do that.

7. Feeling very happy to be back blogging again.

8. My new Sketchers, they are possibly the most comfortable things I've ever owned. So no excuses to get out walking now.
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Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Reasons To Be Excited for Spring.

(some pretty blossoms from last year)

Apparently, spring has arrived.

It happened a few days ago, but so far I'm seeing no signs of it at all! I keep seeing posts on Instagram of flowers blooming and of trees covered in blossoms, and my question is this..."Where are our flowers?". Our garden is still bare and I have huge concerns that our cherry tree isn't doing all that well. We've had so much snow over the last few weeks, and sadly, I have to say -more is on the way. The weather keeps telling me that it's going to be a white Easter, and that's not how Easter should be. I love the snow...LOVE it! But seriously, I'm done with it now. I'd love for it to feel that we're moving on in the year and stepping away from winter

So while we wait for spring to properly kick in, here are some reasons to be excited for it.

1. New wardrobes. I've never been one for spring clothes, or summer for that matter. I'm a lover of heavy knits and cosy layers, so when it comes to spring and summer, I just stick to jeans and t-shirt combinations. This year I want to change that, I want to embrace light colours and something other than jeans. Trousers, maybe even skirts? I've already started picking up a few new things, a denim skirt, paper bag linen trousers -that I wasn't sure off to begin with, but I now absolutely love!

2. Getting outside! I feel the need to move, to get out side and move my legs...walking I think they call it? Seriously though, it would be nice to have slightly better weather so the option was at least there. We've been keeping up with exercise but only indoors, and I think it's always so much easier to motivate yourself when there's a bit of sun and you can get out the house.

3. Being able to tidy the garden. In all honesty, Paul does most of the work outside. I get too creeped out with spiders. The garden has just been looking so sad lately, and I'm pretty sure some of the grass is dead now. It would just be nice to have things tidied up a little, I'd like to freshen up the furniture and add some colour with some new plants.

4. Eating a little better. We don't eat badly, with the exception of more treats than we should probably have, but it's not easy when it's still cold. You want heavy comfort meals when you get home to warm up. I'm looking forward to making lighter meals and mixing up different salads. And yes, I know there's nothing technically stopping me from doing that right now, but it's just not what I want when I'm cold.

5. Lighter evenings. Not something I thought I'd ever hear my self say, but for the last few years, I've really embraced them and now I enjoy the light nights. Especially around my birthday, on the longest day of the year it doesn't even feel as if it gets completely dark, so it's lovely to sit in the garden with blankets and enjoy the fact that you can comfortably sit outside that late in the evening.

6. Eating outside. Since moving into this house, we've fully embraced and tried to make the most of the garden. We love to spend time eating outside, being able to have breakfast in the garden is such a lovely way to start the day. And then of course, you have the BBQ's in summer...but we aren't quite there yet.


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Sunday, 25 March 2018

Creme Egg Scotch Eggs

creme-egg-scotch-egg
creme-egg-scotch-egg

Just in case, there isn't enough Easter sweetness around for you at the moment, let me go ahead and add some more.

Creme Egg scotch eggs are an idea Paul and I came up with a couple of weeks ago when thinking of Easter treats to make. I suggested to scotch egg idea, but to cover them with salted crisps was all Paul...and it's a bloody good idea, let me tell you! They're very simple to make, and if you buy the brownies, instead of making them, then it's a no bake recipe too. If you are buying the brownies, make sure they are dense gooey ones, the dry cakey ones wont hold together the way you need them to. I used my brownie recipe -without the white chocolate, it's my go-to, and give's you the best gooey brownies so it's perfect for this. 

This isn't a very precise recipe, it will really depend on how much of your ingredients you use to make each scotch egg. With my brownie recipe, I had enough for 3 full Creme Egg size and 4 mini egg size. The mini eggs ended up with a lot more brownie around them, but who's going to complain about that? 

creme-egg-scotch-egg
creme-egg-scotch-egg
creme-egg-scotch-egg

Ingredients:
Plain chocolate brownie (my recipe's here)
Creme Eggs (or others you prefer)
Ready salted crisps -crushed
50g dark chocolate -melted

:a pastry brush is also really helpful for spreading on the dark chocolate.

- Crumble the brownie into a bowl so you have lots of small bits to work with. Add the crushed up crisps to another bowl.

- Take a handful of brownie mix, and start to squish it together with your hands until it's a dough you can mold. Flatten it out a little, place a Creme Eggs in the center, and start to shape it around the egg.

- Add more brownie as you go, if you need to, then shape and roll in your hands until you have a ball.

- Brush the brownie ball with dark chocolate, this is just to help the crisps stick.

- When covered in a thin layer of melted chocolate, roll in the crushed up crisps. Press them with your hands gently to make sure they stick. 

creme-egg-scotch-egg

As I've said before, I'm not a fan of Creme Eggs. So for my scotch eggs, I used Galaxy Caramel eggs, and they were sooo good! I think one made with the Lindt Lindor eggs would be pretty good too. As well as being very tasty, these little scotch eggs are such a fun treat for Easter, they would make lovely gifts or, a fun dessert if you're having Easter lunch. 


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Friday, 23 March 2018

Happy Friday!

{Spotted in Edinburgh}

Hello there! It's been a while, hasn't it?

The break from blogging I've had over the last few weeks was completely unintentional. It came from a feeling of being overwhelmed, taking too much on and a lot of things being out of my control.

In February, I over committed! On top of everything else there is to do in life, I baked five cakes, and not simple little things. Big detailed birthday cakes, and they all take a lot of time. Not to mention the constant mess in the kitchen, that made it feel as if I was doing nothing but cleaning up after myself, and the icing sugar floating around. As well as that, I was doing a lot of DIY in the house, and trying to get it finished so that things can go back to normal. The upstairs of our house is currently, best described as a nightmare! I like to think things could always be worse, it's how I keep myself feeling happy and positive. But living in mess, not having space for your things, and having the simple task of trying to find clothes in the morning, become an actual mission -can get to you! The saying "tidy house, tidy mind" is a saying for a reason. It got to the point where considering making more mess, just to take a blog photo, wasn't worth it. Oh, and the crazy snow we've had, well that flagged up a few issues we need to have fixed on the outside of the house.

Again, I know things could always be worse, they could, but feelings can build, and lead to you feel worse in other ways. The cakes and mess, the DIY mess, the chaos that is upstairs was getting to me, and I missed one post on a Friday because I had no time. Usually that wouldn't have been an issue, things get missed, sometimes you run out of time -totally acceptable! But because I was already feeling overwhelmed, that made me feel worse. Then that feeling grew and I started to wonder what the point was anyway. "Why would I bother, no one cares really", "I have nothing interesting to say", "what am I bothering for, it's just a waste of time"...and so on. Leading to this little space being ignored, along with any other forms of social media.

Of course, these feeling came from everything feeling out of my control, they passed, and I started to feel sad that all the things I had planned for this space had been ignored. Drafts of posts have been left unfinished, photo's taken but not sorted through or edited, I haven't even picked my camera up in weeks...very unlike me. But the longer I left it, the more difficult it felt to start again. Which isn't a nice feeling to have about something you love doing.

I'm not writing this to be "oh poor me", not at all, and I don't want this to read as if I've been unhappy for the last few weeks, because I haven't! Lot's of wonderful happy things have happened, one of which being me finding my wedding dress!! (a story I have to share with you soon). Making the whole "we get married in October" thing seem much more real. There have been birthdays, lovely days out with friends and family, lots of fun happy times, the only thing that was missing was this. Oh, and I still haven't missed a day of my Polaroid Project, just incase you were wondering!

The point I'm trying to make is this. It's far too easy to get wrapped up and taken in by these feelings, to let all the small things build and build, until they're one collective mass on your shoulders that you can't deal with. When a few little niggles are getting you down, it's all too easy to let things get to you that usually wouldn't be an issue. Upstairs is still a huge mess, and I still can't get to a lot of my clothes, the issues outside still need fixed...but it's ok! As annoying as it all is, it will be tackled eventually. Sometimes it's more about taking a step back, looking at everything as separate tasks to be dealt with, instead of thinking of it all as a whole. We all have these times when we feel sorry for ourselves, but they pass.

So, it's a very happy Friday indeed! Even just writing this post has made me feel so excited to be back again, you don't realise how much you miss certain things until you stop doing them. The sun is shining outside, it's actually starting to feel like Spring, and we have a weekend of fun plans ahead of us.

And before I go, how are you all doing? What have you been up to in the last few weeks, anything exciting? 

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