Guest posting over at Stay At Home Mum Loving It! – New Bloggers

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Today I am honoured to be part of new bloggers guest posting for the lovely Heather over at Stay At Home Mum Loving It. For the next three weeks Heather is featuring new bloggers while she is off on holiday to Florida (Jealous….much!)

I have followed Heather’s blog for a good while now and am honoured that she has allowed me to guest post.

So head on over and check out some fabby new bloggers and give them some support.

Claire xx

Fertility guilt or envy?

One of my twitter chums posted a link to this blog today where the author is discussing Fertility guilt, it’s a really good post and the author puts things really well. My chum had put in her tweet how she had been made to feel this during her pregnancy and it prompted some discussion between us and a few other ladies who are pregnant now. I can’t believe how common this is! I must have been really naive but I didn’t and to be honest still can’t understand why someone would make someone else feel guilty for something that 100% has nothing to do with them.

As you are all aware I am the one who is yet to get pregnant and I do admit to suffering sometimes from the old green-eyed monster when it comes to others being pregnant but I would hope that I never make them feel guilty, intentionally or otherwise. My thoughts on this are why should they? They have nothing to feel guilty about, it is not a pregnant ladies fault that I am not yet pregnant so why should they feel in any way responsible for my situation now.

Source: google.com via Claire on Pinterest

I am a true believer in the mantra that you are responsible for your own thoughts not others, if I am the one who is jealous of another then I am the one that needs to deal with those feelings and as this quote says I am the one who is responsible for how I act no matter how I feel.

In my mind that is to keep my small jealous streaks to myself and to learn to enjoy the excitement of others and share in their ups and downs as they embark on a journey of a life time.  To be there for my friends who are going through this when they need me, not to dwell on my situation and to take hope out of their situations and bring it into my own.  This works for me and I feel that it is helping me to continue to stay positive throughout my own journey to becoming a mum.

I hope that with all my pregnant or mummy twitter chums and my family members that are pregnant that I come across how I genuinely feel and that is, happy for them, happy for their future, filled with hope for my own and totally head over heels for all my twitter nieces and nephews! Not to mention the two new additions to my own extended family that will be due this year.  I hope that everyone continues to allow me to share in all of these things with them.

Plus just think of how many experienced ladies I will now be able to bug for advice when it is my turn.

Claire xx

Liebster Blog Award

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Ohh I’ve won an award! Not a fancy one that can sit on the mantle piece but one from the heart, one that shows that someone likes my blog and took the time to nominate me for a Liebster Award. Thank you to Laura from LifeLoveLaura. Big kisses flying across cyberspace for you.

A Liebster award is an award for upcoming blogs that may have less than 200 followers. I definitely fall into that category, though I am not sure if it is only me but I struggle to keep track of how many actual followers I have, my stats show that something completely different happens in comparison to my actual listed followers so I think my blog is getting read somewhere at least!

The simple rules of the Liebster Award are:

– List 11 facts about yourself

– Answer the 11 questions that I have answered below

– Nominate 11 fellow fab new bloggers who have 200 followers or less

– Go to each bloggers’ page and let them know that you’ve nominated them

– Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their page, et voila!

So here goes, 11 facts about me….

1: I’m tall, at 5′ 10″ I tower over most girls 2: Due to being so damn tall, I have huge size 9 feet! 3: I am the youngest in my family 4: I am originally from Ireland but now live in Scotland 5: I used to live in the Isle Of Man, hence the twitter handle having Manx in front of it 6: I went the whole way to the Isle Of Man to meet and fall in love and eventually marry another Irish person! 7: I have a tattoo on my lower back 8: I am a psychiatric nurse 9: I am a lover of all things apple related 10: I am known for being little miss organised 11: My 2nd toe is bigger than my big toe and looks very ET like!!

Why did you start blogging?

I blogged before when I was planning my wedding over at Scotland To Spain and really enjoyed documenting our wedding. I stopped after the wedding as I thought I didn’t have anything to blog about anymore but at the beginning of this year I had the urge to start again and decided after some encouragement from my twitter chums to lauch this blog.

If you could eat lunch anywhere in the world where would you go and what would you have?

Oh this is a hard one, I am not a foodie at all and just love a good meal. However if I am going to have to choose a country to eat that meal in I think I would go for Italy, I love Italian food and was amazed by the food on the trips that we have done to Italy. I would go for anything pasta based as I am a carb freak.

From whom, what and where does your blogging inspiration come from?

Mainly just from my life and the things that I am loving or doing at that time. I love reading other blogs for inspiration too and it helps me to think that they subject I may want to blog about may be more interesting than I think.

How do you handle a stressful day?

Through the nature of my job most days can be quite stressful so I am well used to having to de-stress and I have mostly worked it to being able to de-stress on my journey home in the car, mainly by blasting my music and singing along, though if it’s been a really stressful day and all I have done is listen to people, sometimes all I want is complete silence. I love getting out for walks with the dog too and find that they really help me clear my head and de-stress.

What do you hope your children remember about you?

I currently don’t have children but when I do I would want to them to remember me as a Mum that gave them her time. I want to be able to spend time with my kids doing things and showing them the world.

What is your favourite quote?

‘The Best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear’ Buddy the Elf

What is your favourite recipe?

Good old Spaghetti Bolognese, nothing beats it for me.

What projects are you working on right now?

I recently taught myself how to do basic crochet so I am currently working on getting better at that and making more crochet items. I am quite crafty by nature so always have something on the go or at least have plans in my head to do things.

What is the best thing about you?

I would like to think that it is me being a nice person. I have a tendency to be too nice though sometimes and that leads to me being disappointed if I don’t get the same back.

Will you follow any of the bloggers that you nominate?

I already do and love their blogs!

What makes you giggle?

Lots of things but one sure way to get me laughing is getting my dog to howl on demand, it is the funniest thing ever.

And the blogs I nominate for the Liebster Award are:

 

The Olive Dragonfly

Adventures of a Dizzy Girl

Siobhan Claude Van-Damme

The LaLa Diaries

This Girl is…

Stay At Home Mum – In Training

First Time for Everything

Adventures With Cake

Glasgow Mummy

Tulips and Tea

My Spare Thoughts

So there are my 11 nominated blogs, they may of course have more than 200 followers, but they are blogs that I am enjoying reading so I wanted to let them know they are appreciated.

Take part if you would like.

Claire x

 

Nutella Cookies

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I decided that I wanted to do some baking but didn’t want to make anything to complicated so after a little while spent on Pinterest I decided on cookies and came across these Nutella ones, now I love Nutella and love cookies so win win for me!

The original recipe can be found here at the Tasty Kitchen  they are made with only 4 ingredients and ready in under 30 minutes, now that is what you call quick.

Ingredients:

  • 235g of Nutella
  • 1 Egg
  • 120g plain flour + two extra tablespoons
  • Sea Salt

The original recipe states it makes 6, however I got 12 out of this and feel that they are all of a good size and consistency.
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Heat the oven to 180 c (350 f, gas mark 4) and line a baking tray with baking paper

With an electric mixer, mix the Nutella, egg and flour together until it makes a dough

Place the bowl of dough into the freezer for 10 mins

Once the dough is chilled, scoop out 1 inch size balls and place on your baking tray around 1 inch apart

Sprinkle with a tiny bit of sea salt

Place the unbaked cookies back in the freezer for 2 minutes

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I flattened mine down slightly using a fork as I had seen that in other recipes and I was worried that they would be too thick but they do flatten out quite a bit when they are cooking so it’s probably not necessary.

 

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Bake the cookies for 9-10 minutes, take them out earlier if you like a sticky cookie.  Take out, let cool for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack and enjoy.

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They are scrummy and so quick and easy to make!

Claire xx

Large crochet granny square baby blanket

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Today I am featuring another Pin It Do It challenge and linking up with the lovely Bex and Roz over at Olivedragonfly

Olive Dragonfly Pin It Do It

My lovely Sister In law is pregnant with her second (due in August) and I can’t wait. I adore her daughter but as we weren’t living in the same country as them when she was little I didn’t really have any of the baby time so I am really looking forward to being around more to see this little one grow up.

I really wanted to make something special for the new baby and decided to crochet a blanket, I started trawling the internet to find one that wouldn’t be too hard to make as this was my first ‘big’ project and came across this one via the Lionbrand website. You do need to register on this site to view their patterns but it is free and you will find loads of free patterns on there so I feel it is worthwhile. Their patterns are written in US terms so bear that in mind if you decide to use one of them.

Source: lionbrand.com via Claire on Pinterest

 

We don’t know the sex of the baby yet with my sister staying on team yellow so I decided to stick with colours that I felt would work for either sex. After some help from my twitter friends and the lovely Laura over at LifeLoveLaura I decided on the following colours.

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White, Lemon , Lavender, Aspen

As I am new to crochet the Lionbrand pattern was great to get the colour changes right. For my blanket I used the colours above from the Stylecraft double knitting range of wool.

My blanket is 32 rounds, measuring 26″ x 26″ square and 38″ Diameter, you can make this as big or small as you want depending on where you think they would use it most.

This is how mine ended up and I love it!

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I think it is the perfect size and perfect colours for either sex of baby. It is lovely and toasty too but not too heavy so I am hoping she will get a lot of use out of it.

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I decided that I would like mine to have a nice edging to finish it off so back I went to trawl the internet to see if I could find one that again wasn’t too difficult. I came across this one from Attic24‘s blog and adapted it slightly for my blanket.

Instead of doing two rounds of the five chain loops I just did one then added the shell stitches, mainly because I wasn’t sure if I would have enough wool and I didn’t really want to have to go and buy another just to finish it off – turns out I had loads left! Though I think that the finish has turned out just as nice and I am very happy with the edging.

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I think that it finishes it off just nicely and gives it that more professional look, I think finishing off in the purple sets it off great.

I can’t wait to give it to my Sister in law when the little one makes their appearance, I really hope that she likes it!

Claire xx

Spicy Lentil Soup

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I love soup, it’s so quick to make, healthy and cheap and this recipe is no exception.

You will need:

1 onion chopped
4 carrots chopped
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
400g can chopped tomatoes
125g red lentils
750ml veg stock
1 tsp basil
Salt and pepper

 

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First you need to saute the spices along with the onion and carrots.

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Add the remainder of the ingredients and bring to the boil, simmer for 40 minutes.

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Blend in food processor or with a hand blender and serve with salt and pepper…. simple, gorgeous and free if you are following slimming world!

Claire xx

Dresses, Dresses, Dresses

It is our Nieces first holy communion in May, so I am doing what any normal woman does and putting the case forward for a new dress. I need it to be a good length and also to have some kind of sleeves or a capped sleeve, for one I hate my arms and two, I thought I better be a little covered up for the church.

I already have this dress that I bought from Tesco at the end of last year, I love it but I have worn it to a family event already so I am thinking that really I would like another one. This is now reduced to £15, a steal at that price! It is a really lovely shape, has great lining and is a good length.

Source: clothingattesco.com via Claire on Pinterest

I seen this one when I was in Tesco today for £16 and thought it looked quite nice, it is a really good length as well which I need. I always struggle with knee length dresses being quite tall and they end up being nowhere near my knee.

 

 

I like the look of this one too and am wondering if maybe I could be brave and wear it with a pop of colour shoes. This is from Very at £59, though I am not to sure if it will be too busty?

Source: very.co.uk via Claire on Pinterest

 

Or this one from Next £24, they do a large selection in their tall range and this is one of the ones that comes in Tall, regular and petite.

Source: next.co.uk via Claire on Pinterest

Or this one from Peacocks for £20, I like the colours going through it, but am not sure of the length so it may not be long enough for me.

 

After my post about shoe shopping I am really lusting after the pink shoes at the bottom and I wondering if I could make them work with any of these dresses. What are your thoughts?

Claire xx