Quick veggi Tart

This is great for a no sandwich lunch it’s lovely hot or cold, so you can cook it the night before, for lunch the next day. ( I love something you can prepare in advance! ) 

Ingredients 

1x puff pastry ready rolled sheet

2x tbsp of red or green pesto

1x mozerella cheese ball sliced

3x mushrooms sliced

1x pepper chopped

A handful of tomatoes halved

A handful of rocket

Method

1. Pre heat the oven to 180c and Grease a large baking tin 

2. Un Roll the puff pastry sheet ( this is easier if you leave it to warm to room temp first) 

3. Prick the puff pastry with a fork leaving about an inch all the way round.

 

4. Spread the pesto over the pastry.

5. Scatter the chopped, mushrooms, peppers and tomatoes. 


6. Then place the sliced mozerella ball spread out over the veggies. 

7. Bake for 20 mins. 


This is a great recipe because you can substitute any over the veggies for stuff you have in the house, why not try some courgette or red onion on top. 

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What a difference another baby makes!

No matter how many children you have parenting can be amazing, knackering, frustrating, beautiful and even more tiring!

Before I had Elijah I was excited, but equally as daunted. How was I going to cope with two children ? Two children under two.

When I had Samuel (my first) it was hard because I didn’t no what to expect, I worried all the time. Worst of all I pressured myself to be the image of a ‘perfect mummy’ the image I had created before I had any children!

You no the one, the mummy that will:

  • Never shout
  • Give her children chocolate
  • Let them watch television
  • Bribe her children with the promise of snacks.

I also let other pressures get on top of me, there are so many pressures to exclusively breast feed. I struggled feeding Samuel, it seemed like all he wanted to do is feed. When I cried to the health visitor telling her that he wanted to feed 11,12,13 times a day she just said that’s normal every baby is different. She made me feel bad when I suggested giving him a bottle for a few feeds a day, or maybe I made myself feel bad. Because I had imagined feeding my baby until he was weaned onto cows milk, in the end I gave Samuel 1-2 bottles of formula a day and breast feed the rest of the time until he was 5 1/2 months.

I feel differently now, maybe because I know that we can’t be perfect, that some days you will be super mum and bake the healthy snacks you see on Instagram. Other days you will need ten cups of coffee and the help of Justin fletcher to entertain your little munchkins.

At the moment I am very much the second mummy, but that’s ok Elijah is only 5 weeks old and we are slowly but surely getting used to our new family rhythm, and getting out the house with two little people! (Which is soooo much harder!)

So when I was struggling with feeding 2 weeks ago with Elijah, I spoke to the midwife and asked if it would be too early to start combination feeding. I did feel a bit like a failure because again before I had Elijah my ideal was to exclusively breast feed not just because of all the health benefits but because it was soooo much cheaper, and I didn’t want the faff of making and sterilising bottles! The midwife was so supportive and basically told me I had to do what was best for my family. I agree, Elijah’s feeding was established so there was no problems giving him a little formula, just to give my nipples a few hours break, my milk would still be enough to feed him the rest of the time.

This was the best thing I’ve done because it helped me to continue breastfeeding, I’ve managed to increase my milk flow and I’m now going to try and express a little so I can replace the formula with expressed milk, (but if I can’t that’s ok too).

The great advantage of giving Elijah a bottle is hubby can feed him, he really enjoys this and it’s a lovely bonding experience for them, it’s so lovely to see.

Although the Midwife’s and health visitors really encourage people to breast feed they don’t tell you how hard it can be.

I think the best thing to do is just trust your instincts and do what is best for you and your family. In the end that’s what really matters.

Did you have struggle feeding? Comment below and don’t forget sharing is caring!

3 Little Buttons

Hello baby . . . 

Introducing Elijah William Meek born 23/03/17 weighing 8lb 10oz, born in the midwifery led unit of the Norfolk and Norwich hospital with just gas and air for pain relief. 

How is Elijah 3 weeks old already ?? 

The last three weeks have come and gone in a blur of night feeds, nappies, visitors, washing ( how is there so much washing, thank fully my mother-in-law has been an amazing washing fairy!!) , toddler temper tantrums, car shopping ( our stupid car decided to break a week before Elijah was due!) and lots and lots of baby and family cuddles.

I’m not gunna lie the last three weeks have been hard work! But completely worth it! 

Adam had two weeks off after Elijah was born which was lovely, the last time we spent two weeks together was when Samuel was born. 

When we came home from the hospital with Elijah, it was 1:30pm just 7 hours after Elijah was born. My mum and sister were there to help us with Samuel which was great because Samuel was very wary of me, I had burst blood vessels all over my face and I looked shattered I was also walking rather strangely ! For a good week and a half Samuel wouldn’t cuddle me or kiss me which was absolutely heartbreaking, we were so close before.
Thankfully Samuel slowly started to give me more attention and affection and he is now back to his normal self! 

Elijah has been amazing he was 8lb 10 oz when he was born and lost just 7oz, we had a midwife appointment today and he is now 9lb 2oz! Feeding is going well, I’m exclusively breast feeding at the moment but I have found this hard as he feeds ALOT!! At least 12 times a day so I may introduce some formula for his last feed at night so Hubby can give him this and I can sleep!! But we will see how it goes. 

The last couple of days Elijah has been a lot more alert when he’s awake, and is now awake for 1-2 hours at a time ! 

Big brother Samuel is (most of the time ) brilliant and very gentle, and patient when I’m feeding Elijah ( although Mummy guilt really does set it if Elijah is having a cluster feeding session ) of course he has his moments when he is tired or hangry!! But for the amount of change he has had to cope with I think he is doing really well. 
I’ll give you a another update in the next few weeks. And more baby spam!! 

My Petit Canard

What have we done. . . How can I look after two babies? 

Ok so I’m having a little freak out, Christmas is over and my head is now full of EVERYTHING that needs doing before baby no. 2 is born in March.

To name a few that I still need to do: finish packing hospital bag, wash all Samuel’s old clothes, buy new clothes that are season appropriate, buy a car seat, fit car seat, de clutter the whole house ( because how are we going to fit another human in our little 2 bed semi), decorate our bedroom ( as this where baby will sleep for maybe up to a year?!).
All while my back feels like it is being punched by a heavyweight boxer, I feel constantly sick and every time I go up and down the stairs I end up having to have a 5 min rest because I’m so out of breath!

So this is what’s going round and round in my head at the moment, not to mention what am I actually going to do when the baby actually gets here. How am I going to split my time between a newborn and a toddler? Will Samuel accept the new baby? Will the housework ever get done? Will people think I’m a slob because the housework hasn’t been done? How am I even going to be able to leave the house with two children in tow?
Isn’t it crazy how many questions can be going round in your head
So for all the people who keep saying ‘are you excited?’ Of course I am but I am also quite concerned about the above!
Now I’ve had a chance to breathe and write down what I’m feeling, i know it will be ok. I may not get out of the house or even my pjs some days, the washing might pile up and the ironing will certainly pile up. But I will do the best for my boys and my husband and try not to stress too much when the housework doesn’t get done. ( I did say too much!!)
How did you manage when you went from one to two children ? If anyone has any tips please comment below 🙂

What Samuel’s reading

I’m please to say that Samuel still loves books, although when he is in a mischievous mood he does enjoy ripping books 😦 
Samuel will be 17 months at the end of October.

His favourite thing to do at the minute is to point at pictures in books and have us tell what it is, he is also getting good at pointing to animals and objects that we ask him to find. Especially tractors he loves looking at tractors!

Our top 5 books this month are: 

1. ‘I want my hat back’ by Jon Klassen published by walker books
I found this book thanks to ‘the tiny book club ‘ on Instagram I have been rubbish at getting the books on time to review them for the club but I love reading their recommendations. 
This is Samuel’s favourite book at the moment, the story is very simple and so are the illustrations but I think it’s a lovely book and very funny! 

2. ‘Dear Zoo’ by Rod Campbell published by Macmillan 

This is a classic lift the flap book, Samuel like’s me attempting to think of animal sounds for a camel and giraffe! 

3. ‘Rain’ by Sam Usher published by Templar publishing 

I love the illustrations in this book they remind me of Quentin Blake’s illustrations.
This is Samuel’s second favourite book! We often have this one before bedtime.

4. ‘Bob to the rescue’ by James Bowen and Garry Jenkins published by Red Fox

This book is such a lovely heartwarming story, and a perfect bedtime book. The illustrations are again really good! I can’t wait for the movie! 

What books are you and your little ones reading at the moment ?

I have a toddler!

How did this happen?!? I’ve lost my little baby, he has been replaced with a walking, shouting climber!!!

I knew this was coming he’s been walking round the furniture for months and everyone kept saying ‘oooo he’ll be walking soon how exciting’ and I kept thinking, no it’s not exciting I really don’t want him to walk, I’ll loose my baby.
Well I was wrong every time Samuel makes it to the door,stair-gate or toy he wanted he will turn back and give me the best smile. He is so proud of himself and im so proud of him! If we’re out and a bout he’ll reach up to hold my hand and when we’ve walked a celebratory amount Samuel will look up smile and squeal with delight.
When he falls he’ll look to me to help him up. Or look at me in pride when he gets himself up.
So I was wrong I haven’t lost my baby he still needs me for reasurance, for celebration and of course all the other necessities like food, clean nappies and baths.

magic-moments-blue-150


What’s Samuel reading? 

Samuel loves books! We have a magazine rack in the lounge full of books that he goes to throughout the day and we have two more shelves in his bedroom full of bedtime books ( books that we don’t want ripped !!) 

Our top 5 books this month are: 

  • There’s a bear on my chair- by Ross Collins, published by Nosy Crow

This book is probably our all time favourite it’s a pleasure to read, it rhymes and flows really nicely ( but not in an annoying way!)  and the illustrations are brilliant.

  • Alphaprints 123- by Sarah Powell, published by priddy books 

This is a counting book, but it’s not just 1 elephant, 2 cats, 3 dogs kind of book it has a mini story on each page. The images are great they have catipillars made from macaroons, sheep made from cauliflowers and bears made from donuts! 

  • Dinosaur ROAR- by Paul and Henrietta Stickland, published by Macmillan 

This book is a Daddy favourite! It’s a great book if you are good at voices, Adam (my husband) has a different voice for each of the dinosaurs in the book which Samuel find hilarious, unfortunately he doesn’t think mummy’s voices are as funny!! 

  • Goodnight spaceman- by Michelle Robinson and Nick East published by  puffin books

This book is a great length for a bedtime story, not to long but not to short and we love that is has a letter from Tim peak at the front. Isn’t it amazing that we can send people into space?!? 

  • Can you say it to Moo! Moo!- by Sebastian Braun published by Nosy Crow.

This is one of the best lift the flap books I’ve seen, the flaps are lovely and big so Samuel can lift them really easily on his own, he has this book out at least 3 times a day! 

What are you and your little one reading at the moment? 

Mini quiche

These mini quiche are quick and easy to make and best thing is you can make a batch of them, freeze them and defrost them whenever you need them!

I made these ones with red pepper, but you can use, mushrooms, tomato, onion.

Recipe makes 10-12 mini quiche ( depending on how thick you roll the pastry out!)

Ingredients 
Pastry

8oz plain flour

4oz softened butter

Water

Quiche filling 
5x eggs

Dash of milk

300g grated cheese

1/2-1 pepper
Method

Grease a muffin tin and preheat the oven to 180 degrees
To make the pastry: 
Measure the flour and softened butter into a bowl and rub together until you have formed bread crumbs.

Slowly add tepid water to bring the mixture together.

Then chill for at least 30 mins ( I usually make this the night before )

To make the filling:
Beat the eggs, add a dash of milk.

Add 100g of grated cheese and the chopped pepper/mushrooms/tomato

Roll the pastry out to about 1/2 cm thick.
Cut out circles with a glass or saucer. And place into the muffin tin.

Pour the egg mixture into the pastry cases.

Sprinkle some cheese on top of the egg mixture.

Bake in the oven for 20 mins.

Remove from the tin and place on a cooling rack.

We survived …

….Our first all day wedding with a little one!
My cousin got married in Southwold ( about 1 hour 45 mins from us) 
Despite the fact that Samuels ‘normal’ routine went right out of the window and instead of going to sleep at 7pm he didn’t sleep until 10pm!!!!!! We had a lovely time, the ceremony was outside and the wonderful British weather was very kind to us although slightly windy. We even had a game of cricket as the backdrop it was very idilic.

My cousin had put out a toy and colouring book and crayons for the kiddies so this helped keep Samuel and the other little ones occupied through the speeches. Along with the large amount of breadsticks and rice cakes i kept feeding him!


Samuel had a lovely time walking around the straw bales!

The best thing about weddings with children has to be dancing along to the disco with them I love dancing with Samuel he thinks it’s funny, especially if I sing along! 

Here are a few tips if you have a wedding coming up :

  1. First rule:” less is not more! More is more in this case anyway.
  2. Pack for every eventuality, here are just a few essentials: 
  • Toys – preferable soft toys that don’t make to much noise if they are banged on the table/chair/ person sitting next to them!
  • Snacks- this is probably the most important thing you will pack, they can be used to silence a little one in the ceremony, during the speeches, any time of day really 
  • Blankets with little holes/large muslin- to place over the pushchair for when/IF your little darling goes to sleep. This will stop people waking your little one up when they peer into the pushchair and comment on how angelic they look when they are sleeping.

What are your baby wedding essentials?       

For your own sanity throw all ideas of keeping little ones in their ‘normal’ routine out of the window. It will save you the stress and crushing defeat if it doesn’t happen, and if it does you will have a lovely surprise 🙂 

If you do manage to keep your routine please tell me your secret because we have another wedding coming up in September !!! 

Controlled crying: we do it ……. But I hate it!

I’m writing this sat on the stairs listening to my beautiful little boy cry his eyes out and it’s killing me ! 
Samuel has never been a great sleeper but the last few months we have got him into a really good routine. 

But part of this routine is leaving him to cry when we put him down for a sleep. I hate it ! We’ve tried everything else, I mean everything: the patting gently on his back, rocking him to sleep ( this worked wonders for a a few months then he got to wriggly and agitated), sitting by the cot but they all stopped working and he was waking 4-5 times in the night.

So we tried letting him cry, we’d sit outside his bedroom door glued to the video monitor hating every moment of it. And eventually the crying became less and less and he started sleeping for longer and waking up less.

I still go in if he is getting hysterical and put his dummy back in lay him back down and say ‘sleepy time’.

But it really is the hardest thing to do, it’s not natural to leave your precious baby crying, even if you know it’s for the best. Even though you know if you don’t he’ll have a really unsettled sleep. 

I’m still hoping for the day that we put him down at 7pm and he sleeps soundly until 7 am the next morning ……. I can dream !!!