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DIY Dinosaur Swamp Birthday Cake Hack

DIY Dinosaur Swamp Birthday Cake Hack

I honestly never know what is going to come at me each day. My days are filled with random occurrences, challenges and tasks that sometimes you just have to roll with it. Today as I was walking back from the doctors with Florence my sister […]

Staying Organised as a Busy Family with BoxClever {#AD – Gifted for Review)

Staying Organised as a Busy Family with BoxClever {#AD – Gifted for Review)

Life with a young family is unsurprisingly busy and keeping on top of all the playgroups and appointments and work bits can be a bit of a challenge, especially when baby brain comes into play. I have been using my phone diary for a while […]

31 Dinner Ideas for Families – A Monthly Meal plan

31 Dinner Ideas for Families – A Monthly Meal plan

Our budget is really tight this month what with Christmas just happening and S going from weekly to monthly pay in his new job so I’ve been really focussed on trying to make sure we are as efficient with our money over the next month as possible and finding ways to make what we do have go that little bit further. My main concerns were making sure the bills were all paid and that we could put food on the table. With the bills taken care of, my attention turned to the grocery shop and making a plan to see us through the month.

I always find that shopping for two weeks at a time tends to work out more cost effective in the long run. I’ve taken it a little further this month though, and stretched it out to make a whole months worth of meals.

I actually really enjoyed the planning process. We all sat round one evening and offered up suggestions for things we might like and it’s given me so much more inspiration for dinner ideas. Plus, having over 30 different dinners already listed and allotted to certain days has taken away the whole having to decide what we’re going to have each night and turning to the same old thing because it’s easy and you know it’ll get eaten.

Usually, my weeks shopping bill for 5-7 of us comes in at around £120. This time, it came in at just under £300. For a whole month worth of meals.

If you’re looking to do something similar or just after some different dinner ideas for your family I’ve popped our meals for the month in a list below!

Wednesday: Roast Chicken, roast potatoes and vegetables (cauliflower, broccoli, carrots).

Thursday: Chicken Fajitas (using leftover chicken) with rice. Plain chicken, veg & ricefor the children.

Friday: Scrambled Eggs on toast

Saturday: Picky Picnic Tea – sausage / cheese rolls, chicken nuggets, sweet potato wedges, crudités

Sunday: Birthday Dinner out using taste card 2 for 1

Monday: Chilli Con Carne with rice, garlic bread / Oven baked cod with rice and veg

Tuesday: Beef / Chicken burgers, homemade ‘slimming world’ chips & salad

Wednesday: Ham, Egg & Chips with baked beans, grilled tomatoes and mushrooms / V without the Ham

Thursday: Pizza night!

Friday: Cottage Pie / Fish Pie, carrots, peas & brocolli

Saturday: Tuna Pasta Bake

Sunday: Roast Chicken

Monday: Spaghetti / Vegetable Bolognese (My Recipe here)

Tuesday: Leek & Potato Soup & Crusty Rolls

Wednesday: Chicken / Cheese & onion Pie & Mash with vegetables and gravy

Thursday: Chicken Paella

Friday: Burritos

Saturday: Salmon, tinned Potatoes & Veg

Sunday: Roast Beef

Monday: Chicken Curry

Tuesday: Beef Stew & Dumplings

Wednesday: chicken and broccoli pasta bake

Thursday: Jacket Potatoes with Cheese & Beans

Friday: Fish, Chips, Peas and grilled tomatoes

Saturday: Tacos & homemade wedges with salad

Sunday: Peri peri chicken, sweet potato mash & homemade coleslaw

Monday: Sausage & Mash

Tuesday: Breakfast for tea – a Full English!

Wednesday: Chicken Kiev’s, boiled potatoes, peas & brocolli

Thursday: Easy Cheesy Pasta

Friday: Vegetable Stirfry

I’ll be sharing some recipes for some of these easy family meals over the next month and will come back and add links to them as I go. 

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Christmas 2019

Christmas 2019

I love writing this little round up of our Christmas each year. With it being William’s first Christmas and the first one Florence really understood the whole magic of Santa, this Christmas was a really special one for us. I tried to fill Advent with […]

William’s Christmas Gifts – Gift Ideas for Baby’s First Christmas

William’s Christmas Gifts – Gift Ideas for Baby’s First Christmas

Following on from my post yesterday about what Florence is getting for Christmas, I thought I’d also share with you the things we have bought for William this year. With it being his first Christmas I have been so excited to choose the perfect gifts […]

What Florence is getting for Christmas this year

What Florence is getting for Christmas this year

I hope that this post is taken in the spirit that it’s written – for inspiration for those who aren’t sure what to get, rather than a showy off kind if thing, but I thought I’d show you some of the things Florence will be getting for Christmas this year.

A lot of thought has gone into the children’s gifts this year and I’ve continued a tradition that my mum started when I was young of each of the children getting 10 things from Father Christmas and then some other bits from us too. I know that Father Christmas giving more than one small token is a bit of a controversial way to do things these days, but as long as they’re taught gratitude and kindness along with it I hope that they would never gloat or make someone else feel less as they grow up. Neither of the children have super expensive gifts this year but in the future I’m sure the requests will start to come in and that’s when we’ll likely make sure ‘main’ presents come from us. I guess it’s just a personal preference but I do love the sense of magic that Father Christmas brings and the feeling of  having woken up to a pile of gifts (regardless of their value –  one year all I had asked for was some paper!) from Santa as a child was just magical. All of their presents are already wrapped and they have their own Father Christmas paper that he’s chosen specially for each of them – according to him, this saves a lot of time writing labels!!

The Father Christmas gifts

Unicorn Scooter

 We had originally got her a second hand paw patrol balance bike but out of nowhere she has been set on Father Christmas bringing a unicorn scooter so we are holding it back for her birthday. I’ve ordered this one from Argos which was £21.99 and part of their 2 for £30 deal so I picked up a gift for a friend’s little on too. undefined Image 0

Wooden princess carriage

Asda sell some absolutely beautiful and great value wooden toys but very rarely put them on their website so it can be a bit of pot luck when you go into their stores as to what you might find. With Florence’s recent adoration for Frozen and all things princesses I thought this little play set I found would make the perfect gift.

Fairy Dress up Set

I couldn’t find the full set online but I’ve bought this pair of fairy wings together with a matching tutu  from our local Claire’s store.

Skye & Chase Figures

These were a bit of a bargain find in our local Entertainer toy store at just £3.50 each. I guess they were so cheap because they are from the discontinued Mighty Pup range? Not sure, but they complete her collection and I saved some pennies too.

Wooden play scales

We do a lot of baking here and we are really starting to ecplore maths through our weighing of the ingredients etc. I thought it might be a nice idea to add some scales to her play kitchen so that she can not only expand on her roleplay but we can continue to explore numbers through play. This little set was £12 in WilkoImage result for wilko wooden scales

Frogs Frenzy Game

I’d really like to start having Sunday night board games as a family so I thought this would make a perfect little intro to board games for Florence at her age. It’s like the original Hungry Hippos but with frogs! Image result for elc hungry frogs

HappyLand Playground |  I’m adding just one thing to our Happyland collection this year, and that’s this playground set.

 Image result for Happyland Playground Playset

Personalised baking bits | I mentioned above how much we love baking and I wanted to get something personalised for each of the children so when I found this personalised baking bowl & matching utensils from Sophia Victoria Joy I knew they’d be perfect! Personalised Mixing Bowl


Gifts from us

Of course, the children will also both receive some gifts from us. The big guy isn’t getting all the credit! We’ve chosen a few gifts for each of them to open in the morning from us and these will be wrapped in different paper so as not to ruin the illusion!

Elsa doll

Frozen Princess necklace

Pincer set

Fisher Price Music Set – joint with William

Tea Time / Stocking Presents

These are the standard little bits which most people call stocking fillers, but we always open them after Christmas dinner or just before tea so they’ve been fondly known as tea time presents for as long as I can remember. Most of these have been picked up in poundland or similar stores and none of them cost more than a fiver.

Tooth Brush & Tooth paste – Christmas just isn’t Christmas if you don’t get a new tooth brush am I right?

Money Box

Lanka Kade Unicorn


Frozen Plate / Bowl / Cup set

Alphabet Place Mat

I hope this has given you some inspiration for your own 2 year old’s Chirstmas gifts. 7 sleeps to go!

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A Christmas Playdough Recipe and a cool way to wrap it!

A Christmas Playdough Recipe and a cool way to wrap it!

Florence loves play dough (what toddler doesn’t?!) and she’s been asking me to play it almost every day since our last tub had to be thrown out as she’d left the lid off and mushed all the colours together. I’ve been meaning to have another […]

Florence & William’s Christmas Photo Shoot – 2019

Florence & William’s Christmas Photo Shoot – 2019

It has become a bit of a tradition here to have a little mini Christmas photo shoot in December. This year is William’s first Christmas, so as well as some festive photographs of ecah of them, I got to capture some sibling shots which have […]