Nutella Porridge

Nutella, Nutella, Nutella…. ohhh its magical. Oh btw this is Tracy, the girl that has been gone forever. I know you missed me. but hold the cards and flowers and just make this. It’s a wonderful day to start off your day.

 

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Basically make your porridge like you normally would, once its done cooking add a decent sized spoonful into the middle and mix it around. I didn’t take a picture of that for you because its not the prettiest thing….you can imagine. It does, however, taste absolutely amazing!

I already have a post scheduled for next week so I will be getting back into the swing of things 🙂

Checkout my blog for other recipes, crafts and mom/girl talk.

 

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St David’s Day crafts

This Saturday sees us celebrate the feast day of Saint David, the patron saint of Wales, which falls on 1 March each year. I don’t think you have to be Welsh to enjoy everything that is great about Welsh history and culture 🙂

My Pinterest stream has been full of colourful daffodils and leeks, both of which are national emblems of Wales. According to Wikipedia the flower is a generic Welsh symbol and is in season in March. The leek is Saint David’s personal symbol. Both can be worn by those celebrating St David’s Day.

handprint flowerWe’ve had fun trying out some of the crafts we’ve saved to our St David’s Day Pinterest board. Our favourite was a fun handprint daffodil which has really brightened up our craft space. On previous occasions we’ve also had fun making pretty daffodil biscuits and paper daffodil bunting.

This year for the first time we made our own Welsh cakes together. They were really simple to make and easy enough for my children to get involved too. You can find the recipe and method over on my blog.

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I also found felt leek badges, recipes for Bara brith and adorable Welsh lady bunting. What will you be making this year?

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30 minute Dinner Rolls – No rise time!

I’m on the 30 Day Shred workout programme. Me. Who NEVER exercises and whimpers at the thought of flexing a muscle.

I’m on Day 17, and I freaking LOVE it! I’ve totally shocked myself at my commitment to it. I have 2 stone to lose to get back to ‘pre-child’ weight and although my progress is slow, I’m losing steadily every week.

So, to the point.

Last night I whipped up Jillian’s vegetable soup but was CRAVING a little bit of dough in my life. So I pinsearched ‘Quick no mix dinner rolls’ and came up with these beauties to have with our soup.

They literally took 30 mins from Start to Finish. No rise time. No faffing around with dough hooks. Just chuck the ingredients in a bowl and mix for 2 minutes with a wooden spoon.

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I found the original recipe here over on the Chocolate & Chilli’s blog – pure yummyness here people!

I omitted the extra pinch of salt because I found that the mayo makes them salty enough 🙂

Quick Dinner Rolls:

2 cups all-purpose flour plus a pinch of salt (You could use wholeweat flour too)
3 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp light mayonnaise
1 cup milk
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400 F.  Grease a muffin tin.

In a large bowl add all the ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon for about 2 minutes.  Fill the prepared muffin tin 2/3 full.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Srsly. They’re THAT easy. And so yummy with a big ol’ pot of soup.

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If this has taught me one thing. It’s that I need a new muffin pan. No amount of cropping or PicMonkey is going to hide that cretin of a pan!

If you try these out,  post a pic on our Facebook page so we can have a nosey!

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Kid-friendly Valentine crafts

It can’t have escaped your notice that we’re celebrating Valentine’s Day this Friday 🙂

It’s a great opportunity for some crafting and we’ve made a couple of things which we really enjoyed. The first was ice hearts which is great for sensory play!

My 3-year old has been learning about water, ice and snow at nursery so this gave us a chance to talk about water and what happens when you put it in the freezer.

We also talked about colouring water with food dye. He was more than happy to add the food dye to the water and mix it.

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Then he poured the water into a silicone mould. He enjoyed doing this and there were only a couple of spills. We carefully placed it in the freezer and waited.

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The next time we had a bath we popped the ice hearts out of the mould and placed them in a bowl so we could look at them. We admired the different colours we had made …

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… and then watched them melt in the warm water.

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We’ve also made red wool wrapped cookie cutters, heart sun catchers, marzipan hearts dipped in white chocolate and printed our own cards using sheets of styrofoam! I’ve pinned these and lots of other crafts to my Pinterest boards so come and take a look!

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Chinese New Year crafts

Chinese New Year is celebrated on January 31st and 2014 is the Chinese New Year of the Horse.

It’s a great time to be crafty as the red traditionally associated with Chinese New Year is really vibrant and much needed at the time of year. Red is a lucky colour in Chinese culture and on Chinese New Year money is traditionally given to family, friends and employees in a red envelope.

I thought I had a Chinese New Year Pinterest board but I don’t (yet!) which is strange as my timeline has been inspiring us to craft at home for weeks. Here are a few we’ve come up with so far:

Chinese New Year tea light holders

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Finger print Chinese lanterns

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5 minute fortune cookie

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What have you all been making? Feel free to comment and I’ll come and visit!

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5 Fab Tips on Working from Home

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January.

Yip, it’s that time again… the time of year we sit up and take stock of ourselves, our lives, our wants and our dreams.  For many of us, those dreams include taking the plunge and stepping into the unknown world of ‘Self-Employment’

I have been self-employed for most of my working life and although it is a constant ‘kick yourself up the backside and plod on’ kinda venture, it is also HUGELY rewarding.  Selling something you have created or seeing the results of your work makes your heart burst with pride and gushiness. Yes, 10 Noddy badges per triumph over here! Being able to fit things in around school plays, sports days, anniversaries & birthdays is a huge bonus too and well worth the work done in the wee small hours of the morning to catchup!

So, I did a little research and have come up with these top 5 tips for those of you who may be considering the road to self-employment, be it an Etsy, Folksy, eBay store or even becoming a professional blogger. (Dream job alert!)

 1. Pricing

Don’t be afraid to charge what the value of your product or service is worth! So often I see entrepreneurs undercharging for beautiful items or services (particularly social media related!)  which I know have probably taken them the best part of a week to complete!

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All credit to Tolmema for this handy formula!

Bailey sums up this (sometimes tricky) issue for crafters in particular here in her article by saying:

“If you want to actually profit from your crafting, you HAVE to charge what your product is worth. It’s going to be higher than Walmart pricing, and that’s okay, because your items are made by hand and that takes time, effort, materials, and more. If the consumer truly appreciates the products that you are selling, they will buy it, regardless of the price. The biggest factor is demonstrating the value to your customers. Once you do that, people will realize that your products are worth their cost, and you will see more sales!

2. Find a Space

Designate a little corner in your home that is Just Yours. It could be a spare cupboard, a chest of drawers or even a movable caddy like this:

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Whatever it is, assign yourself a little space to get creative and help keep yourself organised! If you really want to have a mooch around a heavenly craft space, check out Jaime’s room over at Raising Up Rubies. *Drool warning!* Pure.Happiness.

3. Have a system & a schedule

Organisation in your ‘workplace’ is key here…. you will be the Director, HR Manager, Secretary, Marketing Guru & Creative Genius all wrapped up into one! Implement a system for keeping all of those bits of paper organised, orders in check & dates diarised and you will sleep waaaaayy easier.

I find it all too easy to just pop the laundry on, or stop what I’m working on to vacuum the house because it’s bugging me….

Have.A.Schedule. And stick to it! I found a great article on How to Create a Cleaning schedule that really works over on Organise My House – check it out Here! 

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How to organise your time when working from home by Christina’s Adventures

4. Surround yourself with things that inspire and motivate you!

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Staying motivated is KEY to being successful by working at home. It’s all to easy to sit at your computer / craft table for 6 hours straight without taking a breather.  I often get ‘writers block’ and the best way to unleash the words is to go and sit in a coffee shop with a notebook & pen. People-watching creates great stories! So does coffee. Oh coffee how I love thee.

Give yourself a break to go and do something you really enjoy… even if it’s just a brisk walk around the block or a quick swim before you pick up the kids – the perks of working from home is that you are able to schedule time to do these kinda things!

Make it pretty! I have a stationery PROBLEM. I heart pretty stationery… pens, post-its, sticky tape, paper – you name it, I LOVE it! I have loads of the stuff and use it daily – I’m convinced it helps me be more productive. Convinced. 🙂

5. Be Easy on Yourself

Working from home isn’t always plain-sailing, BUT it’s hugely rewarding.  Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t get all 52 things on your To-Do List done today. Becca at My Crazy Good Life has some great advice here…

“Your to-do list will never be done.

Every night, circle the three most important things on your to-do list for the next day.

Get them done.

If you have time, do more. And at the end of your day, turn your computer all the way off and close the door to your office.

There’s always tomorrow.”

Keeping home and work seperate is always going to be the most challenging, and you won’t always get that balance right – don’t beat yourself up & most importantly have fun, network lots, read lots & enjoy every second of being your own Boss!

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