50 things in my 50th year….

So this year, I am hitting a big milestone! The grand old age of 50. Unlike reaching 30 and 40, I am actually looking forward to this birthday. Why? I’m not completely sure, but I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I am finally very happy with my life!

I have an amazing husband, who I adore. We have a fabulous relationship. We have the same interests in common, (well nearly), and we compliment each other so well.

I have wonderful parents and family. I have great friends. All of this means that entering into the next chapter of my life is a time to celebrate and enjoy, and I intend to!

With this in mind, I have put together 50 things I would ‘like’ to achieve in my 50th year!

1)  Travel to China

Hopefully this is an easy one to achieve! I’ve been planning this trip for what seems like forever! I had seen the trip I wanted to do a few years ago, but had to wait for the company to release it. Finally, in January 2018 I received the telephone call I wanted! I could now reserve my place on the Viking River Cruise tour – Imperial Jewels of China, with added extra days before and after the tour! It is a holiday of a lifetime, but worth every penny I am having to save for it!

Amongst many things we will see the Great Wall of China , Forbidden City & Terracotta Warriors. I’m so excited. It is like a dream come true.

2)Visit Croatia

Again, another one I will be able to tick off my list this year. We have booked a 4 night trip to Dubrovnik. I am so looking forward to seeing the walled city, and where Game of Thrones was filmed.

It might be only for a few days, but I know my hubby and I will pack a lot into that time as usual!

3)  Weekend away in a VW Campervan

I have a little obsession with these campervans. I’ve never been in one, and they probably are not as cosy and comfortable as they look, but I’d still love to have even just one night away with them. There is something so romantic about them. Don’t ask me why!

The downside is though, you would have to go outside into the cold to pop to the loo! For one night though, I am sure I would cope!


4) Re-visit Lundy Island

Yes this might sound a bit unusual, but one of my best ever birthdays, and probably the only one I really remember in detail as a kid, was spent on a day trip to Lundy Island. For those that don’t know, it is a little island off Ilfracombe. It is a nature reserve owned by the National Trust.

I have very fond memories of this trip, even if my mum can’t stop telling people about how I fell in the sea twice on this trip, getting on and off the boat! I do not intend doing that again, but I am planning to spend my 50th doing the same trip!

5)    Eat at a Michelin star restaurant

I’m sure I have already done this once before, but not with my hubby! It would be nice for the 2 of us to have a beautiful meal, good wine, in an award winning restaurant. Maybe with views over the ocean or a city! I’m an old romantic I know, but why not!

6)   Bake with Paul Hollywood

It’s is no secret that I have a celebrity crush on Paul Hollywood! I’d love to have a baking lesson from him. I’m sure I could concentrate just enough to learn something new!

7)  Be my own boss

You will probably find this one a bit weird, but I would love to one day have my own successful business. Successful businesses don’t start overnight, they take time to build up. You have to start somewhere. I just need to find the right idea!

As you will tell as you continue reading, some of the 50 things on my list are probably not going to be achieved, but there is nothing wrong in having dreams and ambitions!!

8)   Buy a new car with the registration of the year I was born

I’m terrible with cars. I never usually keep them for more than 3 to 4 years. Mainly as I know they will be reliable and cost me less in maintenance. My current car is now just over 4 years old. I do love it, but that isn’t the reason I haven’t changed it!

This year, the number plate will have the number 69 in it! This is the year I was born, so I would like a number plate with 69 in it! Mad I know, but I’ve got this into my head!

9)    Get at least 1000 subscribers on my YouTube Channel

My new years resolutions last year were to start a blog. I did this, but I also really wanted to do a vlog. I was unsure if I would have the courage to do one, but in April 2018 I launched my first YouTube channel.

Having subscribers at the time wasn’t really that important as I was just playing around, but as the year has gone on, I have found I really enjoy it! I would love to increase by subscribers to at least 1000. Why? Just to know if anyone is actually interested in anything I am doing, or is it just for me?

I’ve learnt that the number of subscribers is a great measure of success. Not necessary of your channel, but maybe just 1 video! Just to say once in my life I have achieved that, would be great!

10) Take a hot air balloon over my home town

I’ve taken a hot air balloon over the Atlas mountains in Morocco and loved it. I often see them flying around where I live. I would love one day to go up and see where I was born and bred from above!

11) Have a weekend away with my parents

As I have gotten older, I’ve learnt to appreciate my parents so much more than when I was a kid! I am so proud to call them my parents.

When I was a teenager, I was very independent. My last holiday away with my parents was when I was 16. After that, they may have been in the same place, but I was very much with my friends.

As they get older, I realise time with them is precious. I would love just 1 night away with them, to build memories. A log fire somewhere in the countryside or overlooking the ocean would be perfect.

12) Fly first class

I was once offered a free upgrade to fly first class to New York with British Airways. There were a few of us going on a trip with work. I really wanted to say yes, but was reminded by a colleague that it would be unfair if only 2 of us got to fly first class, when the rest of the group were in standard class, so I politely declined!

I wonder how many others would have declined the offer! I’m sure they would have too wouldn’t they? Sadly, I’ve never been offered a free upgrade again, or had the finances to pay for one! Viking did offer me a deal to upgrade our flights for our China trip, but it was way out of our budget! Ah well, you never know I may win the lottery one day!

13) Complete a successful ‘Dry January’

It is probably no surprise that my husband couldn’t stop laughing when I said I was doing dry January! Not because I have an alcohol problem, but I do like a glass of wine at the weekend after a hard week.

I’ve said I’m going to do it many times before and usually last a week or 2! This year though I am going to do it! Why is this year different from all the other failed years? I’m not sure. Maybe, I am just more determined this year. Or maybe, I want to prove my husband and some friends wrong!

14) Walk 5,000,000 steps in 2019

I have had a fitbit for a few years now and love it! This year as I’m 50, I think it would be good to set myself a target. As I do on average 13,000 steps a day, 5m sounds like just the right number of steps!

15) Learn to crochet

I recently knitted my hubby a scarf for our local rugby team. I only had about 10 days to do it in. This kept me quite busy each evening as I usually only have about an hour to myself, but it also took my mind off snacking! I thought it would be a good thing to find something else to do in the evenings, and although my gran did teach me to crochet as a child, I can’t remember how to do it.

By learning this new skill, I can keep myself occupied in the evenings, and maybe produce a blanket or something that I can donate to charity!

16) Visit Stonehenge

I can’t believe I have never been there! It isn’t that far away from me so I really don’t have an excuse not to go! I love visiting sites like this. Dogs are allowed, so have even less of an excuse!

17) Swim with dolphins

There is something magical about doing this! They are such beautiful creatures and to get up close, would be a dream! Maybe when I go to Lundy Island, although the see will be a bit cold!

18) Run 10k

Ok, the truth is, I’d love to say I have run a marathon, but lets be honest, there is ambition and dreams, and then there is clear fantasy and madness! The most I’ve done is 5k so 10k would be good to go for next! Especially as I’m not even sure my knees could do that now!

19) Learn to decorate a cake with icing

If you know me, you may be surprised to see this on my list, but the reality is, I would love to be able to do beautiful piping on a cake!

I’ve made cakes for family and friends, but they were quite basic. To do something like The Cake Boss produces would be amazing!

20)Learn to ballroom dance with Anton De Beke

Many years ago, I was able to have some dance lessons with Anton. It was just a day, with a group of others. I would love one on one training to surprise my family that I could dance ballroom. Not sure how the surprise would go, but hey, nothing wrong with dreaming!

21)Be on the panel of Loose Women

When I go to the gym at lunchtime, I will watch either the end of This Morning or the beginning of Loose Women. I day dream often about being on the panel and giving my view and opinion on the topics! Ok, I’m dreaming again aren’t I?

22) Own a designer handbag

I’m not a materialistic person at all. I would rather colour my own hair and paint my own nails than waste(my words) money on getting them done professionally. I would rather put the money to other things including treating others. It would be nice once, to just be indulgent and treat myself to a designer bag!

I’d probably buy it though and regret the expense immediately!!

23) Replace my greenhouse

When I moved into my new home in 2016, I promised myself a little greenhouse. Space for it was short, but I got one which is about 2ft wide by approx 5 feet. It’s only canvas, but I love it! I’d now like to buy myself a more grown up one! I still need it to be small to fit the same space, but it would be great having sliding doors instead of zips, or to be able to see inside it!

I keep looking, and maybe this year, I will find the perfect one!

24) Reduce my daily commute to work

Well this is another of my dreams that I probably won’t be able to change this year! Not unless I find something I can do, working for myself or winning the lottery!

I currently have a 3 hour round trip to work each day! It’s very tiring, and limits the quality time I have at home. I would love to have just an hour off that back each day, to catch up on housework etc.

By the time the weekend comes, I’m exhausted. Plus, I then have to spend the little time I have doing the jobs I don’t have time to do in the week!

25) Teach Lola to walk off a lead

My previous dog before Fido was amazing. He never needed a lead on his walks, and would wait to cross a road until he was told to do so!

My youngest dog is super intelligent, but very energetic and independent. I would love to be able to have the freedom to walk her without a lead, however I fear that may never happen! I’m not going to give up though. I’m contemplating this year, taking her to dog training! Now that should be fun!

On the plus side, she is doing wonders for the muscles in my right arm!

26) Teach Fido to not bark at the door

Fido has this really annoying habit of barking every time anyone tries to exit our front door. I can’t even remember when it started, but it really is a nuisance and annoying. My hubby and I are trying all the techniques we have read about to stop it, but it’s really a slow process! If we cracked it, it would make for a less stressful life that is for sure!

27) Teach Fido not to bark at noises

I love Fido to bits, but he has some problems! One of them is noise! I am sure he would bark at a cloud some days. Door bells, phones, televisions, you name it, he will bark at it. In fact, it is more than that! He looses complete control!

We are working with him after having a behaviourist in to help us. It is very slow process and so stressful, but we will keep at it. It isn’t his fault. Something happened to him in the 16 weeks before we had him, that has effected his behaviour!

If we cracked this, I think I will be dancing on the moon!!

28) Have 5 minutes of fame on T.V. – preferably on This Morning

Ok, back to the day dreaming at the gym again! I love Phil and Holly and Ruth and Eamonn. Wouldn’t it be great to meet them on This Morning? No? Is it just me then? It would be a laugh I’m sure! Maybe I could help Paul Hollywood cook something on the programme, or even get a make over from Lisa Snowdon! You gotta have a dream!

29)Go to see a musical at least once in 2019

I love musicals. For many years I used to go to loads in London, but in the last 12 years, I have gone to very few! This year is a time to change that! There are so many great ones to see. The challenge will be choosing which one to go to first!

30) Go to a music festival or concert at least once in 2019

Again, I love live music but haven’t been to a music festival for about 9 years! I recently saw Madness live and they were amazing. There are so many more opportunities out there to see music live. Time to change this year and see more me thinks!

31) Write a blog at least once a week

Last year’s New Years resolution was to start writing my own blog, which as you can see I have done. I want to continue doing this so I can grow my audience. I want to feel I have made a difference to others, through my blogs.

32) Improve my photography skills

I’ve been into photography for a few years now, but last year, I really got the bug. I was so shocked and pleased when I entered a photo I had taken of Fido, into a Countryfile Magazine photo competition and won! I now want to build on that. My blog and vlog will help me do this, but I also want to try and improve my techniques by studying other great photographs.

33) Clean out the garage

I really do hate clutter, but you wouldn’t know it from my garage!

Because I am so busy, I just dump things in there! I have an exercise bike somewhere in there. The plan was to use it in there,while watching TV on my laptop! That was 2.5 years ago!

This year, I really need to be ruthless! Throw things out I don’t need, get my hubby to put the brackets up I bought 2.5 years ago, so we can hang things up properly, and start using it!

I may just wait until it warms up first though!

34) Help raise awareness of homelessness

I see so many people sleeping on the streets every day, and it breaks my heart. I do try and help when I can but if others could do the same, even in small amounts, it would really help.

No-one chooses to sleep outside in freezing temperatures. Just a little bit of kindness to them could mean the world.

35) Help out someone at least once a month

I feel very blessed with my life, and if I can do something nice to just one person a month, then it could make a lot of difference. It could be speaking to someone who is lonely, looking after my nieces to give my brother a rest, carrying someones shopping. Absolutely anything. It would be nice just to give something back.

36) Have a professional make over

I never spend much time on me! I’m always too busy, or feel the money should be spent on more practical things. I also haven’t a clue what really suits me, so putting myself in someone’s hand would be great.

This is probably one I won’t do this year, for the reasons above, but you never know, maybe for once I will just take the bullet and do it!

37) Have a ‘hot’ Christmas

This isn’t what you may think!  I’ve always seen Christmas as being a cold time.  My hubby is from South Africa so every year until he left South Africa, he had Christmas in what was his summer.  I would like to see what that is like.  To cook a turkey on the braai rather than in the oven.

I would imagine Santa in speedos may be a bit too far, but it is always good to experience new things!

38) Remember friends and family’s birthdays

I used to be really good at this, but over the last few years it has been very hit an miss.  This year, I want to pre-write my cards a month in advance, date them in the corner of the envelope, put a stamp them, and send a week before!  That is assuming I have their dates in my diary that is!

39) Be surprised

I love surprising people, but it doesn’t really happen to me.  I would love someone to arrange something as a surprise for me.  It doesn’t have to be big, just something that I haven’t had to organise or choose!

40) Have dinner out once a month

I get so tired some weeks.  Having to always think about what to eat every day can be a challenge.  Some nights, I could just pick up a takeaway menu for eat out, but I always think I could use the money for better things, so only eat out for a treat. 

I should at least once a month put myself first, and go out.  It doesn’t have to be expensive, but I wouldn’t have to cook or wash up after!

41) Take an hour out a week for ‘me time’

Going back to some of the things I have said above.  My time is so precious, but I really need to take time out for me to do something relaxing. Recharge my batteries without worrying about anyone or anything!

I do try and get an hour on the sofa each night before going to bed, however that is usually also spent dealing with 2 dogs who decide that is the exact time for them to play fight, right in front of me and the TV!

42) Get 8 hours of sleep a night as much as possible

I seem so tired most of the time.  As I get up just after 5 am, I have to be in bed by just after 9 pm to get 8 hours.  Sadly, as I rarely get to sit down before 8-8.30 each night, I’m not relaxed enough to go to bed to sleep, so that time slips.  I then end up with only 6-7 hours sleep!

Come the weekend, even if my body clock won’t let me lie in, the dogs certainly don’t!  Once I am awake, I really struggle to go back to sleep! I’m not sure how I am going to achieve this one, but I will give it a go!

43) Drink more water and less diet coke

I am so bad with coke.  I really need a healthy kick and cut it down.  It isn’t good for my teeth either!  I just need to try and like water!!

44) Have a girls night out at least once every 3 months

Because I am so busy, I am always tired, so when the weekend comes all I want to do is chill.  This means I neglect my friends.  I need to make sure I make more of an effort this year for them, as they are great loyal friends.

45) Have a date night with hubby at least once every 3 months

I have an amazing husband and relationship.  I don’t want it to ever be taken for granted, so having time away from home together is really important.  When we do, we feel so much better for it and have such a great time.

46) Take a canal trip

Wouldn’t it be great to take life at a slow pace!  Seeing the scenery around you.  Stopping off each day in different places!

I’ve been promising for years to do this with another couple.  I really must do it.  Even for a weekend.  It would be so relaxing, and just what the doctor ordered!

47) Go to see Wasps at least 3 times during the year

I love going to see this team play.  It is close to me and a great atmosphere.  I really should support my local team more and have time out with something my hubby enjoys.

48) Learn the rules to Rugby

I have seen so much rugby with my husband.  I was addicted to going to live matches for the World Cup in 2015, however what I know about the rules of the game are so basic!  After 11 years with my hubby, I think it is about time I took more of an interest and understood why penalties were given etc.  At the moment, my only real knowledge is if the team players I’m supporting have the ball or not, and if they score!

As my school report said – I must try harder!

49) Take up a new hobby

Why not!  It is always good to broaden your horizons!  Our local village has a choir which some of my neighbours are considering.  I may go along on the 7 January for a taster session with them and see how I get on!

50) Keep in touch more with family and friends who live away

I have some amazing family who live down south or up north.  I love them dearly, but I am a nightmare at keeping in touch.  This year I really want to make sure I check in with them more often.  

Sometimes we leave it too late.  I don’t want to have any regrets.

So, as you can see this is a very long list. I’m realistic that some of it won’t happen, but it is good to have dreams and ambitions. I think it makes us more proactive.

Follow me throughout 2019 to see how many I can tick off!

Happy New Year.





An apology to Paul Hollywood!

Anyone who knows me, will know I have a celebrity crush on Paul Hollywood!  It’s been going on for many years.  I’m not sure if its the beautiful blue eyes, the cheeky smile or just his rugged good looks that attract me too him, but I also think he is an brilliant baker too!

Before anyone worries, I also think he has a look of my hubby too!

So anyway, back to Paul! 

I’ve been a massive fan of Paul as I said for years.  I have many of his cookbooks.  In my old house, a couple of them were pride of place on my kitchen top.  Everyday, I would get my Hollywood fix!  Sadly, in my new house, I don’t have the same work space, so he is now on a book shelf in my hubby’s study!

Whenever I need to bake, I first go to Paul for inspiration and direction.  Whether it be from one of his many books or online! So when we arranged a GBBO mince pie competition at work, there was only one man to help me!

I wanted to stand out, and Paul didn’t disappoint with his recipe.  The filling took a normal jar of mince meat, and turned it into something special.  By adding chopped apple and satsumas, it was delicious.  The problem for me was the pastry!

I can make bread, but for some reason pastry just doesn’t go right for me!

My mum bakes regularly.  As we were to make vegetarian pies, I asked her for advice.  She suggested Trex!  So I substituted butter for Trex.

As my Youtube video will show, it all went a bit wet at first, but with a bit of flour I got it sorted. 

I decided to not do a full lid, but be creative with a star!  Hum!  Maybe I didn’t think that through, as the filling leaked over the edge!  Now I couldn’t really tell if they were fully cooked or if it was the juice catching!

I finally pulled them out of the oven and left them to cool!

They certainly didn’t look anything like Paul’s would!   In fact I’m a bit embarrassed, but as I had run out of ingredients, they had to do!

I brought them into work and placed them on the plate with my name on the underside.  We had 4 staff blind judging them on taste and look!  As I expected, I didn’t win!  Apparently, they tasted good, but I had a soggy bottom!!  

I mean, what would Paul say to a soggy bottom!

I suppose I should be grateful that my other colleagues got comments too like, the filling was missing, the pastry wasn’t good enough or the filling was too sweet!  

Oh Paul, what did I do wrong?  I’m so sorry that I took one of your amazing recipes and turned it into a complete disaster!

I’m not going to be beaten though!  I’m going to keep going until I can master the pastry!  Or if Paul is out there and wants to show me where I’m going wrong, of course I wouldn’t be offended!!

Happy baking!!

The Great British Bake Off

So last night saw the winner of the 9th series  of Great British Bake Off (GBBO) crowned the king/queen of baking!

I’ve been a fan of GBBO ever since its first series.  The mixture of great baking challenges, creative cooking, individual personalities and of course, last but by nowhere near least, Paul Hollywood.

Paul Hollywood is the absolute ‘god’ of baking for me.  It helps of course that he has the most gorgeous blue eyes, cheeky grin, and is my celebrity crush!

I know there has been a lot of bad press about him over the years in his personal life, and yes he may be a ladies man, but a girl can still have those crushes.

The crush aside, I do also admire him as a baker.    He had a good start in life, with his own father having a bakery.  He then moved on to be head baker in a few hotels around the world.  One of those countries was Cyprus, where a friend of mine met him a few times, in a local bar.  I am not jealous of that at all!! Much!

His TV career includes The Generation Game, The Heaven and Earth Show, This Morning and other one with one of my admired men – The Alan Titchmarsh Show.  Yes I know, some people find that weird, but have you read his books?  If you had, you would see him very differently!

In 2010, Paul’s career really climbed, when he was chosen as a judge, along with Mary Berry, on GBBO.

He has produced many cook books of which, I think I have all of them!  It really motivates you to be in the kitchen when you can see his face staring back at you!

His books include Paul Hollywood’s Breads, Pies and Puds, British Baking, How to Bake and Weekender Baker.  I think my most used is the book on breads.  Sadly, since I moved, my kitchen work surface isn’t as big as it used to be, so I find making bread more of a challenge!  I have plans in my kitchen though to sort that out one day!  I just need to boost my savings first!

For the first 7 series, Mary Berry worked alongside Paul as a judge, with Mel and Sue as the presenters, on BBC.  In 2017, it was moved to Channel 4.  Sadly Mary decided to remain with the BBC, so a new judge was needed.  They worked so well together, I was worried it wouldn’t be the same.  Mel and Sue also decided to leave the show, so it seemed the whole dynamics was changing!

Some people I know didn’t want to watch it on Channel 4, as they felt it wouldn’t be the same, plus it now had adverts included.  I was always going to be watching it, just to get my PH fix!

So in 2017, the new series started, with Prue Leith as Paul’s side kick.  Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding were to present along with them.

I have to admit now, I loved the connection with Prue and Paul from the beginning, but I struggled with Sandi and Noel.  I can’t quite tell you why, but it took a couple of episodes for me to warm to them.  Now I have,  I love them both.

I do have a silent jealousy of those contestants on the show.  I would love to give it a go, but I know I’m nowhere near good enough!

Some of the creations they come up with are absolutely amazing.

If you have never watched it, each episode is made up of 3 challenges.  Each challenge tests the competitors baking skills.

Signature Bake

This tests their creativity, and gives them a chance to show off their individual personalities.    They know in advance what they are baking, so have the chance to practice it as many times as they can, at home.

Technical Challenge

This is the most difficult challenge I think.  The competitors are given a very basic recipe to follow, usually without baking times, temperatures,  etc, along with some ingredients.  They are given the name of the finished product, but most of them will not even know what it is supposed to look like!

The end product is then blind tasted by Paul and Prue, ranking them in order based on taste and how they look compared to what they should look like!

Showstopper Challenge

This is the final challenge of the round. This is where the competitors can really show off their skills, producing a show stopper to wow the judges, and us at home!

It has to not only look good, but taste good too!

All these challenges are carried out in a huge tent!  It is filmed in the summer months.  The temperature in the temp must reach huge heights, withl all the lights, camera equipment, ovens etc.  In some of the challenges, you will see the impact of the heat on their creations, especially when they are working with chocolate.

After the 3 challenges have been completed, the judges will pick a ‘Star Baker’ for that week.  This is the person who has impressed the most over the 3 challenges.  You receive a ‘Star Baker’ apron and the respect of the other bakers.  There is then sadly someone that has to leave the competition.

This continues week on week, until only 3 are left, to go into the final!

This years final had a bit of a twist!  For the technical challenge, they were taken out of the tent, to where an open fire was waiting for each of them.  Their challenge was to make 6 equal sized Pitta breads with 3 dips!  You have to love Paul’s creativity.  I think the viewers were as surprised as the finalists.

It’s true to say, that all 3 struggled with it, but I admire they way they just got in with it.

If you have never watched the show, I recommend you do!  If you have a love of baking, or even just eating, you will love it.  Or if you are like me, just for the weekly fix of Paul Hollywood!

Paul has inspired me to bake for many years.  I love making his breads and coming up with cake ideas for friends and family.  Here are just a few of my creations of the last few years.

This was for my nieces 4th birthday party.  She wanted butterflies on her cake so this was what I came up with.

My dads 70th birthday.  He is great at making and fixing things.  I felt this reflected him well.

A friends 60th.  The jockey was based on the birthday boy.  He doesn’t ride but loves horse raising and works for a trainer, so I based the horse and jockey on the actual racing colours and one of his horses.

A surprise 50th birthday for another friend.  The man and women are meant to be the birthday boy and his wife!  Thank fully they are still speaking to me.  If you look behind the 3rd photo, you might see a familiar face!!

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This was one of the first cakes I made, to take to my neighbours for a party to celebrate the final of the Rugby World  Cup.

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And my last cake, was for my mums 70th birthday meal.

I do love baking and creating.  I’m not fantastic at it, but its fun having a go.  Pininterest is a great place for ideas.  You can keep it as simple or as complicated at you like.

You just need a good cake recipe, a good imagination and a bit of time.

Watching GBBO inspires me to get back into the kitchen.  I hope it does for you too!

A new week, a new goal!

Wednesday 28 March

They say the second you step off the scales you are into the next weeks weight loss ! Yesterday I only lost 0.5lb! It’s a loss, but I would like more this week. 4lb is my goal. I know what you are all thinking – am I mad! It’s not only a 4 day weekend but it’s Easter ! It’s going to be more difficult but ultimately I’m going to try and keep in my mind why I want this ! It’s coming into summer and I want to be able to feel as confident in my bikini as I did last year !

So I left group last night armed with an SOS log for every day this week! I’m truly focused !

I immediately start preparing dinner! Gammon with all fat removed , sweet potato chips and my favourite broccoli! I added a couple of pieces of fresh pineapple which finished it off lovely ! I only had half my HEB all day so had a double choc hifi bar afterwards! I’m pleased I’ve had no syns all day !

Thursday 29 March

Planning is key when you want to stay on track! We are out for dinner tonight at a pub that is reopening after a refurb! I used to walk past it on my way to school so am excited to see what they have done with it ! Ives been on line to check the menu out so I think I know what I’m having . I’m going to save my HE’s today just in case I want to use them later so it’s a muller light, banana and 2 satsumas for breakfast!

To keep me full until dinner I prepared a wholemeal pasta dish with ham, spinach, cherry tomatoes and 2 boiled eggs !

I finished this off with another miller light and satsuma.

I’m going to confess now that I was also sabotaged! One of my staff made a lemon drizzle cake ! I returned from a meeting to find a slice on my keyboard ! They all know I usually resist all cakes and sweets, so was surprised to see it ! It was however the thinest slice halved so they had really thought about it ! Syn wise, it’s so had to tell which is why I’d normally go without ! I’ve decided to count it as 3 syns, although I’m probably being very generous ! On that basis I felt I should accept it in the way it was meant and eat it !

Sometimes even with complete planning things can happen like this . You just have to consider the options and count it in!

Ouch tonight was a complete disaster! We thought we were going to reopening of The Racehorse pub in Warwick . We expected to enjoy a meal with 1 free drink each! I even checked out website in advance and planned my food ! Glad to say others arriving thought the same! Apparently there were canapés being served only, but after 2 hours we never saw them!

As myself, hubby and 2 friends had saved Ourselves for this treat and were starving, so we left and went to our old local ! For me steak with salad ! Trying to keep on track food wise! Sadly the wine not so much ! As my 2 friends joined us, I swapped from being driver to passenger ! 3 bottles of wine between 3 of us later, my syns were out of the window! It’s rare this happens, and I’m only human, so I’ll just accept it as a blip! I enjoyed the night but now it’s time to move on !

Saturday 30 March

So today it’s damage limitation!

Breakfast was a 3 egg omelette with cherry tomatoes and mushrooms topped with baked beans !

It was hair cut day today . Always nice to have a bit of me time !

A muller yoghurt and 30g of cheese kept me full till dinner time !

Tonight was spaghetti with peppers, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, quark and prawns.   

Absolutely delicious and totally free!

Tonight I picked my stepdaughter up from airport. She didn’t come through until 10.15 pm so as the driver I hadn’t had any wine and was syn free!

By the time we got home it was gone 11pm but I was a bit peckish ! I hadn’t had my HEB so I had 5 Ryvita Rye Cakes. If I hadn’t had my HEA earlier I might have had light cheese triangles on them. Instead I had them dry, but I love them so it was fine . I did have 2 glasses of fizz also at 10 syns!

Saturday 31 March

Saturdays always start with brunch for us.  My hubby has the full fat version of bacon, eggs and sausages.  For me though its the healthier option of 2 Linda McCartney sausages (the red onion ones are free), 2 poached eggs, baked beans and 2 sliced of wholemeal toast from my HEB allowance.  I do love a cooked breakfast and its great that on Slimming World you can still have it with a couple of tweaks!

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Tonight my brother-in-law is joining us. No doubt the Wii will be out.  He loves playing the bowls with us!  He is bringing a leg of lamb over for dinner which I don’t eat.  I have decided to cook a chicken for myself in the slow cooker with a couple of lemons for me. I put it in upside down so all the moisture and lemon juices get into the breast.   I can use the rest for other meals later in the week so it won’t go to waste!

As expected the chicken was absolutely amazing . It literally fell apart when I came to take it out of the slow cooker! I served it along with roast potatoes and carrots done in frylight, broccoli and homemade Yorkshire pudding . I didn’t have any gravy as I didn’t want to add more syns ! I also opened a cheeky bottle of fizz which I see this morning is still half full so can look forward to that tomorrow! I am pleased to say I didn’t have any cakes, chocolates or hot cross buns today either!

I was getting a bit bored in the afternoon which could be a trigger to eat rubbish ! Instead I made a soda bread loaf for my stepdaughter . Taking your mind of food by doing something can really help you when trying to lose weight, whether it be knitting, housework, exercise or baking . Just be careful you don’t eat the baking creations though!!!

Sunday 1 April

It might be April fools day today but I wasn’t a fool with my brunch ! Same as yesterday and tasted equally as good!

I didn’t ask for any Easter Eggs this year so there won’t be any temptation for me ! Well that was the plan ! My brother got me one! Only a small one as he knew I was trying to be good! My mum then gave me a bag full of chocolate and nougat! Eek. I will ration it out though !

My nieces of 8 & 5 were also visiting my parents ! The eldest had made Easter cakes and had brought one each for hubby and I! As my stepdaughter was also there I thought I had got away with it. Then my niece asked her dad to go home and fetch me one which he did ! How could you say no! I will count it ! It was made from cornflakes and chocolate with 3 chocolate eggs on top so I’d say 5 syns ! It was delicious! And well worth it especially as my gorgeous niece made it. I don’t know about you but spending time with family is so precious. My nieces are growing up so quickly I want to share every moment I can with them !

Breakfast was a SW cooked breakfast and all free! 2 slices of wholemeal toast, baked beans, vegetarian sausages and 2 poached eggs! Apart from the little treat above I didn’t eat again until dinner time .

We had gone into Stratford Upon Avon for a walk. Whilst my hubby and stepdaughter both enjoyed a 99, I was good and had a Diet Coke ! I had the start of a cold! You know the feeling of swallowing glass !

Dinner was last nights lemon chicken, roast potatoes which I did with frylight and fresh thyme and broccoli.

We started to do a jigsaw. This one is called a Wasgij! They are great fun as you don’t know what the final picture will look like ! The one on the box is just a clue ! It kept us so busy you don’t think about food! I did have a couple of glasses of fizz though!

Monday 1 April

So my cold is in full swing and I feel absolutely rotten ! Nothing some Day Nurse can’t help though .

Breakfast was the same as yesterday ! Filling and delicious!

I’m not really hungry today so certainly not being tempted by the chocolate that is being eaten around me !

Dinner is 2 Slimming World burgers and homemade potato wedges.

My hubby and I finally finish the jigsaw only to find the puppy had eaten 5 pieces. We were so occupied with it it was late by the time we finished. I had 2 glasses of fizz all night so well in my syns!

Tuesday 3 April

Well because I got distracted by the jigsaw I hadn’t prepared my breakfast or lunch last night, so it was a quick dash to sort something . I did consider buying something on route to work, but then thought better of it! That’s when the extra syns can come in! So it was 2 weetabix with chopped bananas and skimmed milk for breakfast ! Both HE so all free! Yey !

Lunch was lettuce, ham and cucumber. A little light I know but I couldn’t find any tomatoes and didn’t have much time! I also took 3 satsumas and a muller light. So considering it was all a bit rushed it was on plan !

Dinner was left over chicken, new potatoes sliced and cooked in frylight with broccoli! I added salt and vinegar to the potatoes and they were amazing !

So I didn’t go through the same problem as today tomorrow, I prepared breakfast and lunch for tomorrow!

Wednesday 4 April

So last night I mixed frozen berries and quark together for breakfast. I didn’t add oats as I want to save my HEB for later . 2 boiled eggs will see me through to lunch .

Lunch is a ham salad again but this time I have tomatoes ! Muller yoghurt, banana, 3 satsumas and 3 baby bell will be snacked on! It’s weigh in day today so will eat later than usual. This is where my HEB will come in as I will have a hifi bar between weigh in and dinner !

Wish me luck with my weigh in! It won’t be 4lb I know but hopefully a loss !

Drum roll please! What did the scales say? Well ok maybe 4lb was optimistic but I did lose 1.5lb this week. Not bad if you remember my Thursday night antics!

I’m now into another week. Fingers crossed for another loss!