Sunday, 30 March 2014

Yankee Candle Haul

Yesterday & for the 2 days previous Yankee Candle Stores where having special offers. It was only at 3 stores including Worthing which is where I went. 

There was 20% off all full priced items as well as a free gift when you spent £40. I was expecting the goodie bag to be rubbish but whilst some of the tarts are not to my taste I do think the free gift was actually really good. 

Freebies that included the burner & 6 of the wax tarts.

*I am burning Bahama Breeze today after getting Brad to choose ( I knew he would pick this as it smells all lovely & tropical , lol.) 

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Easter Crafts

With the Easter holidays almost upon up aside from organising days out with the kids I am also hoping we can spend a bit of time at home too. Hopefully the weather means we can get out in the garden a bit but for those rainy days or times we just want to be indoors , I am looking for some crafts I can do with Finley ( 11 year old Brad will be happy on his Xbox instead!!)

I thought as I was searching I would share some of my favourites with you too. Let me know what you find & I'll try to remember to show you anything we do end up making.

The 1st few are from Spoonful where you will find loads more crafts to do beside Easter themes.

First off these gorgeous Sock Bunnies look so cute. They are so cute & I would imagine we all of have most of the materials needed already.

This cute Chickadee Card caught my eye next. Again you probably don't need to buy much in the way of materials as if you have kids we all tend to have a little craft stash going on surely?

We all need a basket when we go on Easter Bunny hunt & would this not be just perfect for the job?


Over to All Recipes now where I think it is time to turn to our tummies? Chocolate is always going to catch my eye & these Easter Nests look like they would be fun to make.

These Chocolate Nests are the traditional ones I loved growing up. So easy to do but great fun time to spend with your kids.

You could buy this Easter Porcelain Paint Pack from Baker Ross although I am sure your local shops will have similar for a lot less. I shall definitely be looking for this kind of thing for Finley as I think this will be just up his street because it involves mess!


How about just a colouring book themed for Easter? Sometimes you just want to sit quietly & this is the perfect way to spend an hour or so chilling. 
You could of course , also do a Google image search where you will find loads of images to colour which you can print straight off your PC too.


Thank you for reading this post. I do hope this was of some use to you.
Of course , I have just chosen Easter themes for my craft ideas but there are tons more out there covering a whole load of themes.There is something to suit every pocket too.

Amanda x

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Easter Special || Hunting For Goodies

I have been thinking ahead to Easter holidays & the egg hunting that will be going on everywhere. I would love to buy it all really as it is all so cute but I have been good & manged to dwindle it down to just 10. Do check out the Easter Decorations etc at John Lewis as they really did come up trumps on my search

1 ~ Lindt Easter Fun Bugs & Bees - Waitrose. Currently 2 for £4. Individually priced at £2.50 each.
2 ~ Easter Cupcakes (Mixed) - Waitrose £1.29 each.
5 ~ Easter Cookie Cutters. Set of 5 - M&S. Currently £6.40. Usually £8.
6 ~ Solid Milk Chocolate Foil Eggs ( 500g / Approx 100 eggs.) - Amazon £4.32.
7 ~ Milky Bar Spring Animals (3) = Sainsbury £2.
8 ~ Big Decs Trug (in Pink or Green) - John Lewis £5.
9 ~ Felt Laser Cut Chick Basket - John Lewis £4.
10 ~ Bunny Egg Cup - John Lewis £3.50.

Thank you for reading
Amanda x

Monday, 24 March 2014

Spring Inspired Wishlist

Now that Spring is finally here ( hurrah) I have been looking at things home with a look inspired by the Spring season. Here are just 10 of my favourites. Let me know what has caught your eye too.

4 - Big Spot Beakers (Cath Kidston) £18
8 - Pink Spring Shower Curtain (Cafe Press) £39.50
9 - Loves Me , Loves Me Not ( Yankee Candle) £19.99 ( large jar)
10 - Oriental Birds King Duvet Set (Accessorize) £65

Thanks for reading
Amanda xxx

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Chocolate Victoria Sponge

Chocolate Cake was the request from Brad this week. I went for this simple Chocolate Victoria Sponge from All Recipes as Brad is something of a fuss pot with food, so I did not want to do anything too fancy. Plus I had all the ingredients in the cupboard. To say it went down well is an understatement as I made it yesterday morning & have just had to make another as that one is long gone! Result!

Thanks for reading
Amanda x

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

3 Years Since ... & A Quick Update

Today marks the 3rd anniversary of my Illeostomy operation. This was meant to be a temporary thing whilst my insides had a chance to heal before they could reverse the stoma. At the time I was very poorly indeed. Crohn's Disease  has been a part of my life since I was around 12 years old., I was 19 though before any action was taken to do any tests & finally have a diagnosis. At the time of Diagnosis I had only ever heard of Crohns Disease once a bout 3 weeks before in a magazine. I had a lot of learning to do & even to this day I still learn new things all the time.
I was poorly on & off over the years & was lucky to go so long without any surgery. In Feb 2011 though things started to take a turn. I go into more depth HERE if you wish to read it. Needless to say after several weeks were I would spend half the week ill & then the rest of it OK before the cycle came again, things took their toll. I woke up oat 2am on 16th March 2011 in pain. The pain got slowly worse & worse. Several bathroom visits were involved , although after time this was not worth the effort. By the time the ambulance was called I was almost totally out of it. I would stagger to the bathroom & then have to crawl back because I was left with zero energy for anything. At the hospital once on a drip etc the pain did ease but tests showed that I needed to have an op to remove the diseased section of my bowel. I would then have a Stoma for , hopefully, a short amount of time. 

Things of course never go quite to plan. I struggled so much for the 1st 2 years with my emotions mainly. I wonder if things may have been easier if at the time of my op my youngest Finley was not still only 7 months old. I was away from him for a week & it felt like such a long time. Also because I thought it was only a temp thing that it would soon be gone & I could get on with my life.
I was always wise enough to know when the doctors said I would have a stoma for around 6 months that that would probably be always a year if not more. 

As you will know reading my posts -there is a 2nd update HERE - I have spent the last 3 years waiting for them to decide what the hell is going to happen & getting very frustrated at the different outcomes of each appointment.

I have had a lot of good & bad times. In the 1st year probably more tears than anything else. Lots of wishing that I had , had a choice at the time so I could decide against surgery. Of course that was never an option. My insides too damaged to be left be. A scary thought to think how very ill I was back then.

My moment of enlightenment finally came around October time when I suddenly thought how I had gone that far with my Stoma & had almost grown used to it. I have had no Crohns attacks in that time & whilst this stoma can be a nightmare at times, the pain of Crohns is much, much worse. 

Since then I do not give much thought to any of it. I see the consultant again next month but really I have stopped thinking that every appointment will lead to my reversal because whether it happens or not I need to be at that point where I am happy whatever the outcome. I am at that stage , as I say I barely give the doctors a thought anymore. I have a life that needs living & children who need Mum to be happy. 

It is crazy to think that it has been 3 years. Most of the time it feels like I only came home from hospital yesterday. It will be a day I will never forget probably forever, especially when I think how very ill I was just 2 days before the op.

Thank you for reading this
Amanda xx

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Chunky Choc Orange Cookies

Chunky Choc Orange Cookies


250g/9oz butter, softened
50g/2oz caster sugar
100g/3 &1/2 light muscovado sugar
330g/10oz self-raising flour
2 tbsp milk
175g/60z orange-flavoured dark chocolate , very roughly chopped
50g/2oz pecan nuts, very roughly chopped***

*** as this is a recipe for Finley's pre-school parents coffee morning , I am not using the nuts.

Takes 30 minutes * Makes 18

* preheat oven to 180c/ Gas 4 / fan oven 160c. Line 2 or 3 baking sheets with non stick baking paper ( or bake in batches.)
In a bowl , beat together the butter & the sugars until light & fluffy. Stir in the flour & milk, mix well then stir in the chocolate & nuts

* Divide mixture into 18 equal portions. Roughly shape into balls. Put on baking sheet well apart to allow for spreading. Lightly flatten each biscuit with your fingertips, keeping mixture quite rough looking.

* Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cookies are pale golden around the edges, but still soft in the centre. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Allow to cool a little more before eating.


Thanks for reading,
Amanda xx