Thursday, 30 June 2016

Let The Adventure Begin FREE Printable

Let The Adventure Begin FREE Printable

Today I have excited butterflies, it would seem that in the next month to the next month Leo and I will be moving to our new home! 

I cannot even begin to tell you how incredible this feels, it takes me back to childhood and the only way I can describe how it feels, is to think about how I used to feel on Christmas Eve. The butterflies and excitement just churning around my entire body like bubbles rising and then popping over and over again.

It feels like we have waited so incredibly long to get back out on our own, and the reality of it is, that we have. By the time we move out we will have been back in the family home for 2 years, which for me has been 2 years too long. 
Let the Adventure Begin free typography printable

I told you all the other day about the typography I had been hunting out online, I downloaded fonts and started playing around with PicMonkey in a bid to save a few pennies. This print has been printed and framed ready to go near our console table next to the telephone. I can't wait to see it up there with everything, I like the fact it will be near the entrance to house to highlight the adventure that Leo and I are now embarking upon.

 I thought I would share the Let the Adventure Begin free typography printable today, as it really does sum up how I feel about our house move. 

All you need is:
- A colour printer
- Glossy Photo Paper
- Frame of your choosing

There will be new additions to the Free Printables collection over the coming weeks. 

I hope you like it, let me know what you think in the comments below, Instagram or tweet me a photo of it once it's up on your wall!





Craft your way to a better home

Craft your way to a better home

Your home deserves a little more personality, a little more love and a little more pride – and crafting your way to a better home is a great way to achieve these things! It’s easy to do as well, whether you’re a knitter, a scrapbooker or a painter, you can create beautiful pieces to adorn your home with or apply your crafting skills to your property to give it a boost. It’s time to dig out the craft supplies and try some of these ideas:

Create a focal painting
Your living room deserves some of your art work on the walls, no matter how amateur you feel it is. Grab that paint brush and get to work on a large canvas to feature on your walls, the feeling of pride once it’s hung up will be worth it, plus it will cost a lot less than something you can pick up in a shop and mean more to you. Be sure to tell everyone who visits that it’s your artwork!

Put together a snug quilt for the sofa
There’s nothing better than snuggling up in the winter months beneath a large quilt with your favourite film on the TV and a warm drink (or something alcoholic). So if you enjoy quilting get to work putting together something special for your very own sofa – you’ve more than likely created quilts for friends and family in the past. Put a quilt together using old shirts of family members, old baby blankets or clothes or simply pretty fabric that matches the décor in the living room.

Decoupage the furniture
If you’re an avid scrapbooker, then decoupage should be right up your street and is a great way of using craft to update your home. Pull together clippings from magazines or even wallpaper and assemble these on the furniture you want to decorate in a way that’s pleasing to you. Then it’s time to get the Mod Podge and varnish out and get busy applying these to your side table or chair legs. Here’s a tutorial on how to do this if you aren’t sure.

Light up the candles
Candle making kits are easy to come by these days and allow you to create pretty wax decorations for your home featuring scents you love – and can get creative with! Alternatively, if you don’t want to use a kit then follow this tutorial using ingredients you can easily pick up online or in your local hobby store and get crafting! There’s nothing better than coming home and lighting a candle with a soothing scent to help you relax at the end of the day.


Try out some of these simple craft ideas to enhance your home and you will soon have a space filled with décor made with love, care and pride. 

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Leo turns FIVE

Fifth Birthday

It happened just as everyone warned that it would, time flew. Time really just picked me up, spun me round and dropped me off 5 whole years later. Time was relentless and time really did just tick away, the weeks and months fell away and before I knew it the baby days were just a distant memory, and in my baby boy's place was this little Prince Charming, this little cheeky chappy who has brightened every single day of the last 5 years.

How can it be that one small boy can lighten your heart and give you butterflies like no other? I don't think he really understands the power he has over me and everything that we do, because ultimately I just want him to be happy. So if making him smile means staying up all hours to complete everything needed for a Mario Birthday Party, then you can bet your bottom dollar that that's exactly what I am going to do. 

Leo's birthday this year fell on a Monday, just like it did the day he arrived in the world. Due to this I decided to get his party booked in on the Saturday so that he could have a full weekend to just relax and enjoy himself. It meant that we got to do his friends cards and presents on the Saturday, then on the Sunday we did our gifts with him and realised just how much we had all spoiled that special boy of ours.

Fifth Birthday

There were two things that Leo really wanted for his birthday, a new 2 wheeled scooter because in his words 'I'm a big boy now Mumma. Big boys have 2 wheels! Not 3 wheels!'. I told Leo that I would absolutely love for him to get the new scooter he longed for, but until we moved out it probably wasn't the best idea. Of course I already had a plan up my sleeve and wanted to make sure that the Micro Scooter he has had from a very young age, was upgraded for his special day! 

The second request was a Star Wars Light Saber, it had to be red of course, so I got hunting to find the perfect light saber for my very own storm trooper! 

The scooter had been put together ready as I knew that as soon as he saw the Micro Stunt Scooter he was going to be outside as quick as a shot. As he plodded into the living room on that Sunday morning, his smile took over his entire face. You could see the excitement sparking off of him and he exclaimed 'I have a new scooter! I have a new scooter Mumma! Look!'. He could tell that much just from the way it was wrapped, and it took mere seconds for him to tear the paper away and him to discover the treasure that was waiting beneath.

As expected he headed straight outside, which for me meant that I had to hop on my own scooter at just gone 8am in my pants and the top I slept in! Thank god our post man doesn't come that early in the morning!

The rest of the morning was spent playing with Leo's many amazing birthday presents, one of which the adults seemed to get more enjoyment out of than the kids.. The Wicked Mega Bounce XL which really lived up to it's name, and we managed to get it bouncing higher than the garage roof! Luke was the bigger kid in the end (Luke being my 26 year old other half folks!) and just check out the enthusiasm he put into his efforts..

Wicked Mega Bounce XL

Wicked Mega Bounce XL

Wicked Mega Bounce XL

We spent the morning together as a family which was just lovely. Then I got an un-expected text off Leo's friends Mum who very kindly invited to take Leo over to soft play with her little boy. Leo and his school friend have become as thick as thieves and he was beyond excited to head off with them. As I strapped him into the car to take him over to his friends house for the afternoon, it suddenly dawned on me that this was his very first play date, and the first of what I am sure will be many more to come. 

Leo spent the rest of the afternoon with his friend and their family, it was a weird feeling not having him around at a time when he would usually always be with us, but he came back with so many stories and a very happy face which told me all that I needed to know. They even dropped Leo back at home for me, and the kids got a little bit longer to play together before they went back to school the following morning.

Star Wars Kylo Wren Light Saber

Star Wars Kylo Wren Light Saber

With Monday being Leo's actual birthday, I sent him armed with as many jam tarts as he could carry and couldn't wait for him to come home. At 12:55 I watched the clock to see it hit 12:56 marking exactly 5 years to the very minute that my beautiful boy entered the world. I wondered what he would be doing at school and thought back to those very first moments we shared together all of those years ago.

We took Leo out to Frankie and Benny's with his friend that evening and they were both so over excited and the toilet humor was flowing (Thank you school!) apparently 5 year old's think the word 'poo' is so overwhelmingly funny that it must be added into every other sentence! They were both on their best behavior and treated to a slap up meal full of laughter and each other's company.

So there we have it, another year has passed, and my darling boy is yet another year older. 

Half a decade old already.

Newborn baby boy

Happy Birthday to my beautiful baby boy.
Because despite his age, 
he's always going to be my baby.



Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Lunch with Madeleine Shaw & British Turkey

Madeleine Shaw recipe tasting
Most of you who have been following this blog for a while know that I love all things health and fitness, from the food through to working out, I love it all. I have shared my fitness journey over the last few years, and shared some weird and wonderful food creations, so you won't be surprised to discover one of my biggest passions is cooking up healthy, delicious food because I think that enjoying what you are eating is so incredibly important. 

Last week I was invited to London to meet with British Turkey and Madeleine Shaw to discuss the benefits of cooking with turkey. I was really excited about this because I already cook with Turkey, it is my meat of choice. If there is a choice between Chicken and Turkey, I instinctively pick the Turkey, I always find that it is leaner and less fatty, which makes prepping the meat so much easier for me as I have to cut all of the fat away before I use the breast or steak. Of course if you are cooking with chicken, I often don't have as much meat left as I would of liked. Where as with the turkey, sometimes I don't even need to trim the meat beforehand. 

I find that Turkey works perfectly with absolutely everything as it is so versatile, it holds the flavour and makes a tasty and healthy meal. 

Madeleine Shaw Shredded Turkey Salad

Asparagus and Parmesan Tart

So that's why I personally love Turkey, and I was really looking forward to seeing 2 of the 4 new turkey recipes that Madeleine has created for British Turkey on the day. For those of you who may not be familiar with Madeleine, Madeleine is a holistic nutritional health coach, author of Ready Steady Glow, blogger, healthy chef and intends to help us all enliven the hottest, healthiest and happiest YOU. 

The 4 recipes that Madeleine has lovingly created for British Turkey are below, and I highly recommend giving them a try!


Madeleine Shaw

I knew as soon as Madeleine pulled out a big bag of Kale that I was in good company, and she started to prepare the Shredded Turkey Salad. It's so full of colour and flavour from the pomegranate seeds through to the Avacado. I loved this salad so much that I put it together for the entire family upon getting home the following day. 

I have also gone one step further and used the Miso salad dressing as a stir fry sauce!

The second recipe that Madeleine demonstrated on the day was the Turkey Schnitzel, and this recipe is one that I will most definitely cooking up at home. This Schnitzel is a little different to the conventional one, and that is why I love it. You see this Schnitzel is green, it's green because it's packed full of goodness in the form of Parsley, and the fact that the coating for this particular recipe calls for ground almonds and oats instead of flour. 

Madeleine Shaw Recipe Tasting

With the demonstrations over (and everyone having enjoyed the food that had been cooked up) it was time for everyone to enjoy a very special lunch with Madeleine Shaw and the rest of the British Turkey team. 

Madeleine Shaw Recipe Tasting
It was such a special day and an absolute privilege to sit down to lunch with Madeleine who I have been following for such a long time, and of course a brand that I love. The food was incredible, and it was amazing to witness people who haven't tried cauliflower rice before, enjoying their very first taste. There was not an individual at that table who did not enjoy the incredible meal that had been presented to us. 

The curry is one of the best curry's I have tasted, and I am considering trying to cook this up for dinner this evening (with the cauliflower rice of course!). When you think of curry, you definitely don't believe it to be a hearty and healthy meal, but this is a perfect example of how you don't need to compromise on taste, or skip things out of your diet, you can eat well and enjoy it.

Madeleine Shaw Recipe Tasting
If you haven't tried cooking with Turkey yet (Christmas does not count guys!) then next time you are in the supermarket, reach for the pack of turkey instead. Try one of these recipes to get you started and see what you think, because I know that you will be very surprised. 

A huge thank you to British Turkey and Madeleine Shaw for the demonstration and making me feel so welcome. 

It was lovely to meet you all!

Madeleine Shaw Ready Steady Glow
Disclaimer: I was invited along to the event, provided with lunch and a goody bag. All thoughts and opinions are completely honest and my own.













Monday, 27 June 2016

A Super Mario Birthday Party with FREE Super Mario Power Up Water Bottle Label Printable

Super Mario Birthday Party

This last week has been spent preparing for Leo's 5th Birthday and of course his very first party. We have never really put on a party for him before because I didn't see the need before he started at school, which of course happened last September. My little man is now an established member of reception, and it is only really a few short months until he returns to school to embark on year 1.

I let Leo pick the theme, I let Leo decide who to invite, and once we had sent out the invitations and had a long old discussion about what he wanted for his party we made the preparations ready for his very special Birthday weekend. As it happened Leo's Party fell on June 25th and his birthday is today (June 27th), but as it fell on a Monday he is unfortunately at school today. We did all of the bigger celebrations over the weekend...

Free Printables by others
Super Mario Birthday Party

Free Mario Party Printables

I wanted Leo's first party to be a special one, so I took to Pinterest to see how I could craft my own Mario Birthday Party-wear. I found some super bits and pieces and also started to craft some of my own items to use at the party. 

Free Mario Party Printables

Pinterest provided some great ideas and even some fantastic free printables that I was able to use within Leo's party theme. If you are looking for free printables for your own Mario Party's then the items I used are listed below with full credits.


Green Warp Pipes

Mario Green Warp Pipes

I made my own Green Warp Pipes using toilet rolls by wrapping up toilet rolls in green paper that had been folded over at the top to create the illusion of the opening. I then used red and white paper to create the flowers, I did it all on a very simple scale because I am just not that craft usually but these turned out really well.

The flowers were stuck together with pritstick and then attached to pipe cleaners with sellotape.  

They were really simple to make but really added those little touches I wanted to achieve on the table. 

Mario Table Signs
Super Mario Birthday Party Ideas

To keep the theme flowing throughout the party, I thought it would be great to get creative and put some fun themed food out for the kids. To make this even more fun I decided to create my very own Mario table signs. 

To do this I simply got some round bowls out of the cupboard, drew around it on pieces of card/paper and then glued them together to give them a chunky look and feel. I found Mario themed images online and then simply printed them off/cut them out to stick in place on my design. I used PicMonkey and the Walt Disney Font (Free online download for anyone who is interested) to create the typography and again proceed to print and stick.


Koopa Shell Fruit Salad

Koopa Shell Fruit Salad

This was one of the super ideas I took from Pinterest, I absolutely loved this idea and wanted to incorporate a fruit theme into the party (of course there were also sweet treats but it was nice to be able to offer a selection). 

The Koopa Shell Fruit Salad is just a water melon that has had it's top sliced away and the flesh within scooped out in order to create a make shift bowl. I kept the water melon to one side as I wanted to incorporate it into the fruit salad. 

Once all of the watermelon shell has been scooped clean of the remaining melon, you just need to put a selection of your favourite fruits inside. We put watermelon, blueberries, strawberries, orange and grapes with a splash of orange juice.

I wasn't sure how popular this would be with the kids, but it was a big hit and provided something a little bit different than you normally find at children's party's,

Chain Chomp Watermelon 

Chain Chomp Watermelon

Another fantastic Pinterest discovery was our chain chomp watermelon, which once again consisted of a watermelon shell. This time I carved it more like you would carve a pumpkin. I started off drawing on the melon with a marker pen, and then got a small knife to start carving away the flesh until I got the desired result. I then took a small cheese knife and started to grate against the skin to draw it away. This made the areas on the teeth and around the mouth appear lighter than the rest of the watermelon.

Star Power
Mario Star Power Sandwiches

Star Power Sandwiches were simple to create with a Star Cookie Cutter and once the shape was complete, it was just a case of preparing the sandwich as usual. 

Mario Land Mushrooms

Mario Land Mushrooms

Now usually the idea of Mushrooms at a kids birthday party is completely un-heard of, but those Mushrooms are not usually tasty strawberries and Marshmallows put together on a cocktail stick! It was a simple yet effective and unusual combination but the kids all LOVED them.

Luigi's Spare Tyres

Mario Kart Luigi's Spare Tyres

Now this was more of a Mario Kart addition, but I thought it would be a great way to sneak some tasty Oreos into the equation on the pudding front! 

Fire Balls

Mario Fire Balls

Fire Balls that get flung about in Mario are obviously much harder than the Cheese Ball equivalent that we served up at the party over the weekend, but what a effective way to present a firm party favourite.

Yoshi's Eggs

Yoshi's Eggs

I ideally wanted to use Cadbury's Mini Eggs for this, but obviously the time of year wasn't on my side, and of course I didn't think ahead earlier this year.. I did however strike gold at Tesco with the Candy King Pick 'n' Mix! They sell chocolate eggs (Above) and they made a great alternative and a super addition to the party dessert table!

Princess Peach Rings

Princess Peach Rings

These were an essential in my honest opinion. I hunted high and low for Peach rings and ended up ordering some off eBay because I was adamant that they would be on our Party food line up. After those had arrived I stumbled upon some decent sized packets in Lidl. So if you are on the hunt for Peach sweets, go and check out your local Lidl! 

Mario's Power Up Water

Mario's Power Up Water Free Printable

The idea for this obviously came from Pinterest (as did the entire party in fairness) but I wasn't keen on the free designs that were already available online, and I knew that I could design and print the labels myself quite easily. So that's what I did. I put together my label on PicMonkey, put it into a Word document and ran with it until I got the sizing correct. I will put together a separate 'how to' post at a later date, but for now please feel free to use the design for your own Mario Birthday Party's! 

You can download and print this design for FREE right here

The Bowser Castle Cake
Bowser Castle Cake

Bowser Castle Cake

Bowser Castle Cake

Now this was the bit I was a little worried about, and granted when it came to making the cake, there were a number of instances I almost gave up the ghost and threw it into the bin. If there was one thing that this entire cake baking shenanigan demonstarted...It's that I cannot ice to save my life. The sweets are the only thing standing between the cake looking presentable and looking like one of the children got hold of the icing... So I won't be demonstrating a 'How to make a Bowser Cake' because quite frankly... I only got this far by the very skin of my teeth.  

Despite the icing issues though it all turned out really well, and I can definetly sit back and say that I gave it all my best shot. The most important thing of course is that Leo absolutely adored everything that the weekend threw at him. He could not stop saying thank you to me for all of the party aspects and even now it's all over, he's still thanking me!



Today you are 5

39 weeks pregnant labor

5 years ago tonight I was pacing the house. 

It was Sunday 26th June 2011, the day had been long and hot. I was just about to turn 39 weeks pregnant and my feet had ballooned into some sort of un-human form of trotters, and I was being summoned to see the midwife first thing Monday morning. 

Little did I know that the pacing I was performing throughout the night was paving the way to the arrival of the most amazing little boy I could have possibly imagined. It seems impossible to even fathom that 5 years have past, and 5 years ago to the day that I walked the halls before finally heading to hospital around 8am to meet the absolute love of my life. 

Mother and son

Tomorrow my little super star turns 5.

5 years have molded the most caring, funny and clever little boy. Leo's personality boasts the most amazing sense of humour that often see's me falling about laughing, sometimes so hard that the tears fall down my cheek. He's sarcastic, cheeky and down right mischievous. and I wouldn't have him any other way.

Over the years we have weathered storms and embarked on adventure that I have loved sharing with you all on this here blog. We have grown together and become this super team. He knows that he is my entire world, and he knows that there is nothing I would not do for him. Leo is my number one, and I have loved watching him grow into the boy that stands before me today. 

They say time flies when your having fun, and if there is one word that wraps up the years that have past since Leo's arrival it has to be that. Fun. Of course it has been so much more than that though, because we have both grown, both evolved. Both adapted to find our place in this crazy, beautiful world. Sometimes the world spins so fast that it's hard to hold onto, but somehow no matter how fast the world has twirled and whirled, we are still here, were still smiling. 

Were still strong.

Leo Life Unexpected

Tonight as I tooked my 4 year old into bed for the final time, I looked at him. His long hair brushing his face before I brushed it back revealing his beautiful blue eyes. 'I love you to the moon and back' I said as I stood there just looking at him, memorising every detail on his ever changing face. 'I love you to the moon and back too Mumma!' he replied. 

'One more sleep until your birthday little man!' 
'It's taking for ages Mumma! I want to be 5 like my friends!'
'Don't wish your life away baby boy, you will be 5 before you know it'.

While my soon to be 5 year old can't wait to grow up, I just wish I could freeze time. To keep my beautiful innocent boy and keep him all to myself. Leo is growing up, right before my eyes he's growing up.

Leo Life Unexpected

5 years ago tonight I paced the house awaiting the arrival of a baby boy, and tonight I sit at the laptop looking back over an incredible half a decade. 5 years of love, 5 years that have been cherished and lived to the full. 5 years of being a Mother to my little man.

Tomorrow you are 5 Leo, so dream big and sleep tight, because you just wait to see how amazing your next 5 years are going to be! I have big plans for us, and I hope you know just how loved you really are.

Happy Birthday beautiful boy, I am so incredibly proud of you in everything you say, everything that you do. Keep shining bright my boy and there is absolutely nothing you cannot achieve. 

Leo Life Unexpected





Sunday, 26 June 2016

In this house we do Disney FREE PRINTABLE

In this house we do Disney FREE Printable

With the impending house move drawing ever closer, I have been thinking about how I will fill the walls of our humble abode. I found some really fantastic pieces as I had a mooch around on the Internet, but with those gem finds, there came a price tag. I looked at how simple these designs were and decided to get creative myself. 

It was just a case of finding the fonts I liked and having a play on PicMonkey.

I have now designed a number of my own prints and Typography, I have printed them off at home on glossy photo paper, and also found some frames (Thank you B&M Bargains for the 3 pack of chunky black frames for £4.99!).

They look great and I have definitely saved myself some ££ in the process. Once they are all in their frames you wouldn't guess that it was a DIY home jobby, and they are definitely going to add some colour to the walls.

I am now opening the prints I created as a FREE Printable for you guys to enjoy at home. 

All you need is:
- A colour printer
- Glossy Photo Paper
- Frame of your choosing


Free Typography Printable

Today you can download the In this house we do Disney FREE Printable'.

 There will be new additions to the Free Printables collection over the coming weeks. 

I hope you like it, let me know what you think in the comments below, Instagram or tweet me a photo of it once it's up on your wall!