Monday, 17 July 2017

Menu Plan for week Commencing 17th July

This week on the menu we have:

Monday- Slow cooker Irish stew
Tuesday: Curried Mince beef and rice
Wednesday- Steak and salad
Thursday- Pan Haggerty (a potato and onion dish with ham) from Slimming World
Friday- Quorn Bolognese (Emma's friend is coming round and she is a vegetarian)
Saturday -Eat out in Cardiff
Sunday -Spinach, tomato and red pepper cannelloni.

In the Craft Basket.

I recently bought 2 craft kits from The Range and thought I would at least do one this week.

On my Reading List.

I watched a couple of episodes of the TV series when it was on last year but missed the first one 'Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death' so I thought I would get the book. Whilst searching for it online I saw that the Book People were doing all 20 books for £19.99 so rather than pay £7.99 for the one I bought the whole series. This book is the 9th of the series and I have enjoyed the others. They are light and easy to read and unlike some other books the culprit is not obvious. 

I am looking forward to:

Going to the Doctor Who Experience  in Cardiff on Saturday with the family, especially now we know who the next Doctor is going to be. I had a feeling it was going to be a woman especially with how well 'Missy' was received. Although I liked Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch it will be interesting to see her in a VERY different role. With the previous Doctors I had not seen them in anything else so I had no other characters to compare them to ( I know Peter Capaldi was in an episode of Doctor Who, but that was just a one off).
It will be a long day as we will plan on leaving about 6.00am as the time slot I have booked is 11.30am. This should be plenty of time but you can never tell with the motorways, even on a Saturday.

Quote of the Week
Where the Soul finds comfort
and the heart finds pleasure
                                         Dolly Parton

I will be linking up with Organising Junkie and Happy Homemaker Monday with Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.

Hope you all have a good week.


Sunday, 16 July 2017

Diary for Week 10th-16th July 2017

This week hasn’t been too bad and quite enjoyable for me as there were fun things to do. Monday was the Craft club at the WI I go to. I will admit that there are times the project the group is doing does not appeal to me so I always take a little project of my own that I can work on. This session though was felt brooch making so I thought I would join in. I had an idea of the design but then when I saw an earring that could be used for the centrepiece I completely changed my mind on the whole design. The brooch was simple to make as it just involved cutting out the felt, sewing the brooch fastener on the back piece then because the black piece had a sticky back I just peeled the backing off and stuck it down. The next piece and the centre piece were then glued. The little sheep brooch I did cheat with as it was already made up so all I had to do was sew the brooch fastener on.

We got Matthews SATs results on Tuesday and he passed them all so as a reward we went to Krispy Kreme and then to see Despicable Me 3 at the cinema. I love the Minions and because of that I enjoyed the film.

Wednesday was another trip to the cinema (a bit further away from home). This time it was to see ‘Spiderman-Homecoming’. I definitely thought it was the best Spiderman film I have seen and what made it even more enjoyable was the fact that the cinema screen had recently been refurbished and all the seats were recliners with little movable trays for you to put your snacks on. I will definitely be going to that cinema again especially if all the screens are going to be refurbished.

On Thursday I had to catch up with the ironing and make chocolate brownies for the Wimbledon lunch we were having on Friday at work. Unfortunately I didn’t get round to making the brownies until 9.30pm as Craig had asked the local councillor to visit to see the trees that we would like to be cut back as they are getting too big and we have had a few branches fall and break the shed roof. She is going to see what can be done and is going to push to get the whole area cleared and turfed as it is a little bit further down the street. That would be brilliant and look so much better.

The Wimbledon lunch did not take place as planned as I was the only person who brought anything in so it was business as usual. Friday evening I was feeling pretty tired so we just watched  The Fast and Furious which I wasn’t overly interested in.
My plans for Saturday did not come off completely as I wanted to do a Zone clean in the back and front rooms but as usual Craig had other ideas so they did not get done. I did manage to order the food shopping to be picked up on Sunday however so that I didn’t have to worry about not having time to get that done.
On Sunday we took Emma to get her own DSLR camera which she is paying for out of the money that she has saved. We ended up with a really good deal even though it ended up costing us more than we anticipated. Craig has this habit of wanting to get everything all at once when it comes to gadgets so she has 3 lenses, 2 camera filters and the accessories bundle that you get for ½ price if you purchase it with the camera.
Craig and I then had a canal cruise along the Bridgewater Canal  and Manchester Ship Canal from Castlefield to Salford Quays. It was a very pleasant meal but I have to admit if I was to do a canal cruise again I would go somewhere more scenic as we saw mainly graffiti and brick walls.

So all in all a pretty enjoyable week with lots of fun things but I do need to spend the rest of the month catching up with housework and doing some zone cleaning so that I can stay calm and happy.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Skinny Coffee Club review

Although I have been in my target range at Slimming World for 6 months I am at the top end of the range and I would rather be at the lower. Unfortunately I seem to be stuck at the top end. I had seen loads of posts on Facebook and heard people talking about Skinny Coffee so through desperation I decided to give it a go.

I bought the 28 day programme from Holland and Barrett. When I opened the box all there was inside it was the packet of coffee. I was surprised to see there was no suggested diet plan with it or even a sheet giving suggestions on what else you could do to help you lose weight as there seems to be with any other diet related product.

I suppose this was better in a way because any suggested diet plan if followed could result in a weight loss and it would be impossible to tell if it was the diet or the coffee or the combination. I decided that as I was already following the Slimming World plan it would at least be a review of the coffee as I knew the plan did work as I had already lost weight.

The coffee is meant to be drunk in the morning and to be taken black without any added sweetness. I have to admit I drink my coffee milky and with 1 sugar added so I wasn’t looking forward to having to drink it black. I was very pleasantly surprised though as the flavour is very mild and not at all bitter and I enjoyed drinking it.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to follow the plan for the 28 days as I ran out of coffee after 16 days despite using the recommended amount. I also stuck to the Slimming World plan for those days. Did I lose weight? NO.

 After looking at Facebook comments it seems that if you purchase the coffee through the website then you are emailed a diet and exercise plan which it seems requires you to cut out dairy and sugar. By following that plan then you would lose weight anyway without drinking the coffee so I would save the money by not purchasing the coffee and find a diet plan which is balanced and does not require you to cut out food groups without getting medical advice. However if you do like drinking a mild tasting black coffee and having the extra energy from the high levels of caffeine then by all means pay the £24.95 for the programme,  but personally I would rather spend the money on a new top or skirt.

This is not a sponsored post and I have received no payment of any kind for this review.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Zero Inbox

I hate junk emails as much as I hate normal junk mail. When I see them in my inbox I don’t even bother opening them, I just hit delete. It has got to the point where I have set up an email account for all of those situations where they ask you to sign up but you know they are just going to send what I would class as junk. With that account I go in once a week, have a quick review and then hit delete on them all.

I then have my gmail account which is one of the 2 main email accounts I have.  I decided to set up a gmail as it was easy to access anywhere. I use that account for things that I am interested in such as online courses or newsletters that I will read. With that account I read or print out what I need then I either delete or move to a folder for future reference.

My main email account is my first one which I have had for over 16 years. I do get a lot of junk in that one but  that account also has a lot of emails that I need to keep so that also has a lot of folders which I move them into again for reference.

I believe in only touching an email once and I deal with it straight away. That is generally easy to do with my personal emails as I only need to read (with the exception of some W.I Committee emails) and file.

Work emails are different. I do get a little stressed when I come back after annual leave to find a couple of hundred emails in my inbox. My heart rate increases and I need to focus on clearing it. Fortunately a lot of them can be deleted straight away as they are either junk or somebody else would have dealt with it as it was part of a group email. That still leaves about 15% that I need to deal with and I do not feel calm until they have all been dealt with. My aim for each day is to finish with an empty Inbox.

It has become a bit of an obsession to have  Zero Inboxes because then I feel more organised and in control. I guess it is a control thing as I need to have tidy drawers and a clear desk all the time at work. This is probably because it is an area of my life that I have most control over as I am the same with my car.  I am the only one (at the moment) who drives it and I have a  little bin to put rubbish into, a cloth to wipe down the dashboard and doors and it gets vacuumed out regularly.  I hate getting into Craig’s car as I feel stressed as it is a mess with sweet wrappers, little stones, dirt and dust on the carpets and dashboards. When I get that car it will have to have a full valet before I will drive it.

This zero inbox obsession has only manifested itself since I have felt more out of control at home. This has happened over the last 6 months or so and I really cannot pinpoint how it started but I do need to get it sorted before it gets to worse to stop me spiralling down into depression as has happened in the past. 

Monday, 3 July 2017

Menu Plan week commencing 3rd July 2017

I have to admit I have been feeling pretty 'meh' for most of last week. I find when things are quiet in work it affects me at home and I do not feel motivated to get anything done unless I absolutely have to.

Quote of the week

To go along with how I have been feeling most of the week especially around the house.

Looking around the house

All though on the surface it doesn't look too bad I know the furniture needs to be pulled out and hoovered or swept underneath and there is a big pile of papers that need to be sorted out.

On the Menu

Monday-Poached egg and potato cake
Tuesday - Lasagna which I have already made and frozen so just needs reheating
Wednesday- Grilled Cheese Toasties and Soup and I will have a Mango, Banana and Kale Smoothie as I have a Parent's Evening at Matthews' new school and won't have time to eat anything beforehand.
Thursday- Slimming World Red Pepper, spinach and sweet potato tortilla with salad
Friday- Slimming World Special Egg Fried Rice
Saturday -Fakeaway KFC Chicken
Sunday -Slimming World Baked Cannelloni

What I am looking forward to /From the camera

The whole family are big fans of Doctor Who so we were very upset when we heard that The Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff was closing in September. The summer weekends are pretty busy but we decided to do the trip in a few weeks time and get an early start and do it in a day. I went on my own a few years ago whilst I was doing some training so this picture is me on Matt Smith's Tardis.

I can't wait to go again with the family and see all the Peter Capaldi Doctor's props and characters.
Doing my usual link up with Happy Homemaker Monday and Organising Junkie

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

What I have been doing (19th-26th June 2017)

As this blog is called 'DIARY of a Busy Working Mum' I thought that I need to treat it like a diary and let you know what I have been up to ( It isn't 'Secret Diary... after all).

It was a busy week which started out at Quilting club on Monday. I am making a throw quilt for my bed and wanted to do hexagon flowers. I have made a few up to now but there are still plenty to go as I am hand sewing them all. It will probably be ready for Winter 2018 as the only chance I generally get to do anything is at the club which is once a fortnight.

 (1 down, 49 to go)

Tuesday was a big day for Emma as she had been invited to the Student of the Year presentation at the Lowry Theatre by her college. Some of the students had overcome tremendous obstacles to stay in college and I really admired them for their resilience and courage to complete their studies. Emma didn't win Student of the Year but I was still proud of her for getting Student of the Term
She is now looking for an apprenticeship doing photography or videography but there is little out there at the moment but she is definitely trying hard. She wants to be a travel photographer eventually but is willing to do anything to get experience.

Wednesday brought Emma a little closer to buying her own DSLR camera when she came into work with me to do a research project for my boss. She has been in a few times before doing other projects and it is what made her decide that working full time in an office was not for her. ( I can't blame her, I wish I was in a more active job sometimes)

I managed to resist temptation on Thursday when I took Matthew to Krispy Kreme for a treat. I stuck to coffee whilst he tucked into a sprinkle doughnut

I love going there and watching the doughnuts being made. This time they had the glazing machine on as well. We have been lucky in the past and have been able to go behind the counter and see how the doughnut mixture is made and then filled and ate our own doughnuts. Matthew has also been to a party there and came back on such a sugar high from all the doughnuts he had eaten it was a wonder he wasn't sick.

I was in cooking and organising mode on Friday when I made the Spicy Lamb kebabs from Prima magazine for my brother in law, J.  Craig and I then helped him organise some paperwork he needed for the legal separation from his wife. J had a massive stroke nearly 3 years ago and isn't able to organise the paperwork himself due to the brain damage he suffered.

I also did my own planning for the week and decided to start decorating my planner the way I have seen people on Instagram and Youtube. I have made the inserts as I have not yet found exactly what I want and even these aren't perfect but they are close

The weekend was spent mainly out of the house visiting friends and family. I did lose 1 1/2lbs this week at Slimming World putting me a bit safer in my target zone. I want to get to the lower end of my target zone so that I have got a bit of wiggle room for events and holidays. I also managed to get these planters to brighten up my front garden a little.

We went to Morecambe on Sunday and ended up catching the last part of the kite festival. The kites were huge and it was a good job they were well fastened as it was extremely windy on the front.

We ended up getting back a little later than planned from there because of the Kite Festival so I have got to spend this week catching up with housework. I am glad there isn't much else planned for this week.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Menu Plan week Commencing 26th June 2016

Wow, I can't believe how quickly last week went by. It doesn't seem two minutes since I was posting my last menu plan. The best meal of the week was the Spicy Lamb kebabs. It was quite a busy week which is probably why it went so fast. I hope everybody else had a good week.

The weather 
Thankfully cooler than last week ( I am not a great fan of the heat). It stayed dry today for Matthews sports day but there is rain forecast for most of the week.

I am currently reading;
The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. It is about the laws of attraction and how you can get anything you want by asking for it and believing you have already received it. I will probably do a blog post about this once I have read it as I definitely think there is something in it.

In the craft basket:
In the quilting group I go to I have decided to make a throw quilt for my bed using hexagon flowers. I am paper piecing and it is all going to be hand sewn. Based on the size of my bed I figure  I need 49 flowers plus a white hexagon between each flower emphasise each flower. At the rate I am going it will be ready for winter 2018 but I am not in a rush as I do find it relaxing

On the Menu:

Monday - Nobody but me is eating at home so it will be whatever I can be bothered doing
Tuesday: Slimming World Chilli and Rice (cauliflower rice for me)
Wednesday - So juicy Chicken with cubed potatoes and steamed vegetables
ThursdayFresh tortellini with a tomato and mascarpone sauce with garlic bread
Friday - Burger in a bowl with salad
Saturday: 1 pot BBQ chicken and rice (recipe from Countryside Cravings)
Sunday = Garlic and herb penne pasta

On my to do list

  • Make appointment for contact lens check and eye test
  • Clear out and tidy shed
  • Decorate planner for next week
  • Decide on goals for July and write blog post
And finally

From the camera

We went to Morecambe to see the parents of friends of ours and we saw these sculptures on the front. They look like they are made of wood when you see them close up but colour wise they blend with the rocks.

The Kite Festival was also on and we caught the end of it, just as they were reeling them in. Some of these kites were huge as you might be able to see from the size of the people in the picture and you might just be able to make out a kite in the shape of a diver. They definitely chose the right day for it as it was exceptionally windy on the front.

I am linking up with Sandra at Happy Homemaker Monday and Organising Junkie

Have a great week