Handmade parties

We are fast approaching the busiest time of year for parties in the lifetimeofdiy household. Here in Wales (not sure if it’s the same elsewhere?) the children who will be he oldest in the school year start school part time at 3. In little lady’s case it was those with birthdays between September and December. There were 10 that started and these 10 have become very close friends. As you can imagine little lady gets a number of party invites during this time. Plus we have 4 family birthdays before Christmas. It could be very expensive but we try to be sensible and limit our spending. Within the family a handmade card is the best present ever. We love all things handmade and would rather a homemade cake with fingerprints in the icing (baby D I am looking at you!) than a shop bought one.

The first birthday is my sister’s. Little lady calls her Anti. She has never added her name to the end like with the other aunties. She is just Anti. As a side note my brother is called Uncle 🙂 he doesn’t have a name attached to the end either 😉

So Anti’s birthday. Little lady and I made a cake. A pink cake.

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We also made jelly that not only refused to come out of the mould but when it eventually did, it sagged and looked a bit pathetic 😦

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And let’s not forget the handmade card

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Anti loved her tea party and little lady was happy it was over with as that means that the next family birthday is hers!! 😀

Cup-cakes

Before I start I have to mention that this is take two of this post as the first time I wrote it somehow it was deleted rather than published. I am now over the annoyance enough to attempt a second draft. All I will say is that the first draft was FANTASTIC 😉

This weekend in our church it is Harvest Festival. A joyous time of spending time together as a fellowship at the harvest supper and thanking God for what we have.

As part of my new job I am in charge of running the midweek youth club. This week I wanted to tie in to the harvest theme. I was thinking along the lines of bringing in the harvest, gathering the wheat and of course the flour which is subsequently made from the wheat. I thought about making bread but we only have an hour so that was a non-starter. I thought then about cakes but the oven we have at the chapel is past its best and has a weird combination of buttons that need pressing in order for it to work. A combination I might add, that I do not know 😦

After a bit of a mental block I tried a search on the internet for puzzles and/or colouring pictures that may be useful for the little ones on a Sunday. While looking I somehow, (and don’t ask me how as I still can’t find the link that took me from one page to the next) stumbled upon this recipe. A literal cup-cake if you will. A chocolate cake that cooks in 4 minutes and leaves only 3 things to wash up (the mug, the measuring spoon and the spoon you use to eat it). What’s not to like?

I tried it at home, for research purposes only you understand, and it wasn’t bad. It tasted like cake, which is always a plus side. It wasn’t the most delicious cake in the world but I refer you back to the point I just made about the cooking time and the washing up!

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It went down a storm at youth club. They loved it, mainly because they got to use the microwave I think!

At this point I will say that it is important to use a big mug. If you don’t you will end up cleaning your microwave. We only have small mugs at the chapel so the youth worked in pairs and shared the mixture between 2 mugs. This worked well. Plus I had found that the cake was a little dry towards the middle (nothing a bit of custard wouldn’t have solved) so having less cake wasn’t necessarily a bad thing either. All the cake was eaten, the youth went home happy and I was left with the mess

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Typical 😉

Balancing the scales

I’m in a bit of a panic today. Hubby has challenged me to a competition. A weight loss competition. I have been trying for months to get under the next stone but nothing seems to work. I lose 2lbs one week and put it on again the following week. I even joined a gym 2 months ago (special offer) in an effort to lose half a stone. I must admit I do feel that my tummy area has a smaller wobble than it did before I joined, but the scales are not showing any progress at all. Now before you all start I know muscle weighs heavier than fat but trust me that is NOT what is going on here 😦 there is no way I have developed 4lbs worth of muscle already.

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Hubby too has decided he needs to lose a bit of weight after starting to cycle to work to save on train fare. And that’s fine by me. Then this happened:

Me: “We could both do with losing a bit of weight”
Hubby: “We could do it together”
Me: “Good idea. We could encourage each other which will keep us both on the straight and narrow” although what I was actually thinking was “I’m going to have to make more of an effort now or he’ll lose more than me!” Competitive? Moi?? 😉
Obviously thinking the same, hubby says “okay, that’s decided then- first one to lose a stone is the winner!”

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I could hear myself agreeing before I could stop myself.

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And that’s how I am sat here having just signed myself up for the Race for Life in a month (what on earth was I thinking?) and about to finish off the trifle that is in the fridge – well it has to go before my diet starts tomorrow! Can you tell? 😉

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Wish me luck!

Belated Mother’s Day celebrations

I know Mother’s Day here in Wales (and the rest of the UK obviously) was last Sunday but as hubby’s parents decided to surprise us last week, my mum and I made a date for today. My sister even came home from “the other side of the bridge” to join in the celebrations.

My mum is the hardest person to buy for on Mother’s Day. She will not have “overpriced” flowers, chocolates are a no-no til after Lent and when asked she will tell you she wants “nothing”!!! So this year we decided to do something a bit different. A “at home afternoon tea”.

I was lucky enough to be invited to afternoon tea last year when a friend celebrated a “big” birthday so I knew I needed sandwiches, cakes and scones.

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Ooh and a nice outfit.

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A good time was had by all especially baby D who enjoyed all the goodies being at an accessible height on the coffee table. And I think the goodies went down well too.

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Now who wants to come and do the washing up??