User-agent: * Allow: /. Would Like To Be A Yummy Mummy: May 2011

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Girls day out

Today we had a lovely girls day out shopping.  I had promised if Poppy was good for a whole week we could treat her to some new crafty stuff and she really has been so off we went. First we went to the ELC where we treated Poppy to a new bumper pack of soft stuff tools and dough, a collage jar and some A3 bright card.  Rosie also got some little bells that she took a liking too and shook for the whole shopping trip with a big smile on her face.

Next we headed off to next where I treated myself to a pretty new top.  By this time the girls were starting to flag so we headed to M&S for some lunch.  They had a lovely little cafe we have not been to before which was really nice.    The girls were very well behaved and I felt really proud of them.  Little Rosie did look like she was advertising Tommee Tippee though. She had all of these:

Magic Mat

First cup

Travel bib

Before leaving the shop I quickly treated myself to some new underwear (sadly that is not me modelling it):

Then it was time to head home for a nap.  All in all a pleasant day for all.  I love my girls and days like today make me smile!

Karen x

Dear Poppy x

Dear Poppy,

Sometimes you really make me laugh.

Yesterday we were on the phone to Gramps and he asked what you wanted for your birthday from Mummy and Daddy.  You told him a bike.  Then he asked what you wanted from him and Nanny and you told him an ipad!! are only two.  We both couldn't stop laughing.  Think you might need to lower your expectations but we all love you.

Mummy xxxx

My Moo Cards have arrived!

I am so excited my Moo cards for CyberMummy have arrived. I think they look fab, what do you think?  Have you done yours yet? has teamed up with CyberMummy 2011 and are offering 50 free ones, you just pay for P&P. So if you haven't done them yet then what are you waiting for? You might want to get a move on as there are less than four weeks to go!

Can't wait to see you there!

Karen x

Monday, 30 May 2011

MUMenTum - Week 4

Yesterday I was getting ready to go to a big family lunch.  Husband was upstairs in the shower so dressed in some pretty new underwear I ran downstairs with an armful of clothes, hairdryer, makeup and ghd's.  The plan was to get ready downstairs so I could keep an eye on the girls. Anyway I caught my reflection in our full length mirror at the bottom of the stairs. Normally I am not one for looking at myself half naked in the mirror and would not be happy with what I saw anyway. However, I was not fact I might even say I was pleasantly surprised.

I am nowhere near ready for my shorts and bikini yet but I didn't look half bad and I could definitely tell I have lost a bit of weight and toned up. I was so excited I ran upstairs to show my husband, who told me I was looking good!  This put a smile on my face for the rest of the day. I even wore a short dress which actually turned out to be shorter than I thought (as you can see in the photo at the bottom) but I felt really pretty.

Not bad for someone who has suffered with eating disorders in the past, although that was a long time ago.  Now I am just trying to be happy and healthy so I can be around a long time for my girls and set them a good example.  I do not want them to grow up with the same insecurities I did.  It also wasn't bad considering I took the weekend off!

Honestly I diet and no exercise!!  Instead I had yummy crusty bread rolls, pizza, chocolate, chocolate mouse, ice cream pasta and wine...yummy!  Obviously not all in one go, it was spread throughout the whole weekend! I have overloaded with carbohydrates but do you know what? I don't feel too bad!  Today I am back on my plan and doing well so far.

I have not been weighing myself as I know thats when things get out of control. But my size 12 clothes are all feeling good on me again so I know I am doing ok. Hope to be feeling even better better by the time cybermummy comes around! Here are a few photos, not the most flattering especially the double chin..but they give you an idea!

Hope you girls are all doing well too and if you too are trying to shift a Mum Tum then feel free to join us.  Just add your name to the linky below.

Karen x

Friday, 27 May 2011

Make Me Yummy Blog Hop! - On a mission to find the beauty treatment that really works!

Do you ever look at yourself and wonder where the original you went?...I do.  Do you spend all your money on your gorgeous children buying them clothes and toys..but not spend much on yourself?...I do.  Do you look at yourself and constantly criticize the way you look, wishing you looked younger,  more beautiful etc?...I do. Did you used to make more of yourself, spend more on clothes and makeup but don't bother as much nowadays?...I did. However, now I have decided the time has come to do something about it!!

The title of my blog is "Would Like To Be A Yummy Mummy" and really I would! Recently I have been blogging about my mission to lose weight and get fit and healthy for the Summer.

So far, with the support of the other MOMenTum ladies I am doing pretty well.  I have lost a bit of weight, am taking multi-vitamins which are giving me more energy and I am generally feeling much better about myself. Personally I think this makes me an even better Mummy (not  a vain one) as I have more energy to play with my children and am much more patient and relaxed than a few months ago.

The things I dislike most about myself at the moment are the dark circles under my eyes, my scabby scaly hands (from constant hand washing), my rough dry skin and my lank looking hair. See I really do need a bit of help to make me yummier.

So I am now on the look out for those magic potions, lotions or products that are going to Make Me Yummy. this space because I am on a mission!!

Image courtesy of
I have approached a few companies and have been sent several free beauty products to trial over the next few weeks, lucky me! These include creams for both the face and body, deodorant and shower gel. I am also going to be an ambassador for the new Zaggora toning hotpants.

Apparently these bad boys can help you lose up to two dress sizes in two weeks. They are designed to help you get more out of your workout but listen to can also lose weight in them while sleeping. I like the sound of this.  I think I might be living in mine. They are due to arrive in  a few weeks time so watch this space for more information.  I will be blogging about them several times a week and am really hoping that they are going to be as amazing as they say they are. In fact I am hoping they are going to be magic hotpants!!

With all of this going on, I should be feeling back to my old pre-baby self in no time..or maybe a new improved version of me. Anyway, do you fancy joining me on this mission? If so, just write a review about a beauty product, post your favorite beauty tip/ product or even tell us about a relevant upcoming event, it is up to you.  Then add your name to the linky below. It will be an opportunity to discover new products, beauty tips, events going on and to meet other like-minded bloggers you have not "met" yet. Together we can help each other out.  Say goodbye to the tired looking Mummy's and hello to the new improved gorgeous looking one's!

If you are a PR company looking for bloggers to trial and review your products, then look no further than here. All these people in one place looking for that illusive product that is going to really work and turn us into the Yummy Mummy's we all want to be!

Come on, join in the fun and if you want to grab my badge!


Karen x

National Vegetarian Week - Recipe 5

Wow, its Friday already and Day 5 of supplying you all with one of my favorite recipes.  This one is very quick and easy to make.  It is also surprisingly good!  I can eat this one on my low carb diet and the girls will eat it with me.  They get to have freshly baked bread with it, while I have salad but even so it is yummy.

Today's recipe is:


Creamy Mushroom Soup

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 shallots or 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 2 packs (10 ounces each) mushrooms roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 pints vegetable stock (we use veggy oxo cubes)
  • 1 cup cream
  • Freshly milled pepper

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat. 

Add the shallots, mushrooms and thyme. Cook for 10 minutes, until the mushroom pieces are lightly browned. 

Add the vegetable stock and water. Reduce the heat; simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat; add cream. 

Puree in batches in a blender until it reaches the desired consistency.  We like ours quite thick but with a few lumpy bits of mushroom in it.  Next Return the soup to the saucepan.  Finally add  freshly milled pepper to taste. 


Karen x

Thursday, 26 May 2011

National Vegetarian week - Recipe 4

As I have said before, I do not usually publish recipes but seeing as though it is National Vegetarian Week, I thought I would share some of the ones I cook at home. I am not an amazing cook, but I do like to have a go.  Most of the stuff I make is very easy to prepare and is just made with everyday foods we usually have in the cupboard or fridge. The rest of my family are not vegetarian but they do eat plenty of vegetarian food too.  Sometimes they will have it alongside meat or sometimes they will have it for a change.

Tonights recipe is:

Vegetable Curry

You will need:
  • Mixed fresh vegetables (eg mushrooms, onions, carrots, broccoli, peas, potato)
  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • Coconut milk
  • Curry powder
  • Rice
First put the rice on to boil.  We like to use wholegrain rice but you can use whichever you like. Just follow the instructions on the pack.

Next in a separate pan or wok (we use the wok for everything), heat a little oil.  Add the chopped onions and mushrooms.  Once they are starting to go a little brown add the peppers.  If using carrots and potato's I often steam them for few minutes. We have great little microwave steaming dishes that means no mess or hassel.  Then add them to the pan too. Peas and broccoli don't take long so once everything else is done I would add these.  

Next add the coconut milk.  You can buy it ready made in tins or in a pack where you add it to boiling water and stir until it becomes coconut milk. Both are good. Reduce the heat so its simmers and add the curry powder. Poppy only likes it mild so we tend to use mild curry powder but you could use whatever your family enjoy.  Let it simmer for about 20 minutes. 

There you have it, a delicious vegetable curry for the whole family to enjoy (whoops forgot to take a picture of it looking like this). Now that Poppy is approaching three and becoming a little fussy.  I tend to whiz the sauce up in the blender for the children and pour over the rice, that way Poppy will eat it and Rosie is happy that she has the same as her Sister!  

Feel free to serve it whichever way you choose and with your favorite condiments. 


Karen x

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

The Gallery - My Backyard

Due to my Husbands job we have to move roughly every two years. We do own a house ourselves but rent it out as houses are provided with his job each time we move. This post is about the backyard (or garden as we say here in the UK) of the house we live in at the moment.

Currently we are living in Devon, a beautiful part of the Country.  We do not have much of a backyard though.  It does have outside space but it is kind of quirky and all grass.  There is enough room for a tables and chairs though as modelled by Poppy and there are gorgeous views to enjoy on a sunny evening.  This side of the house tends to feel a little cold and shady in the morning but come 2pm it is like  a little sun trap and stays like that until the sun goes down. Perfect for Summer barbecues.

There is room for a few toys as modelled by both Poppy and Rosie.  We have a slide, tunnel and small trampoline which get lots of use:

We also have a long thin bit of paving which stretches along the length of the front of the house and under Rosie's bedroom.  Poppy and I play out here sometimes when Rosie is enjoying her morning nap.  Poppy is able to use her scooter, roller skates or just run to tire herself out.  She loves this.

We also have a small area where we are growing some strawberries, lettuces, tomatoes, peppers and sweetcorn as well as a few flowers. Here are our strawberries, we actually have quite a few little green strawberries already:

ll in all, I think we are making the most of the small area we have.

For more entries head over to sticky fingers.

Karen x

Vegetarian Week- Recipe 3

I m not normally one for posting recipes but this week is special. It is National Vegetarian week and being vegetarian myself I am doing my bit and posting a new recipe each night. These are all easy recipes I use myself. I wanted to show that you do not have to be a fantastic chef to cook meals for your family. I myself am no Delilah but I do like to cook and like to know what we are eating, no additives and preservatives in this house...well not many! I am no Saint either! Anyway today's recipe is:

Cheesy Tomato Pasta Bake

You will need:

  • 250g pasta
  • Mixed fresh vegetables (eg mushrooms, onions, peppers, carrots etc)
  • A tin tomatoes
  • A tin of Heinz tomato soup
  • Cheese
  • fresh basil leaves
  • Freshly milled pepper

First part boil the pasta so that it is almost cooked but not quite.  It should still be a little on the firm side.

In a separate frying pan sauté some onions, mushrooms, peppers and whatever other vegetables your family enjoy.  I sometimes add courgette, garlic, carrots or sweetcorn.

Tip the pasta and the vegetables into an appropriate oven dish.  Pour over a tin of chopped tomatoes and the secret ingredient....a tin of Heinz tomato soup. Honestly it is great for this sort of thing. This one is a bit of a cheat recipe.

Next top with grated cheese. If you want it really cheesy, stir some in with the vegetables and pasta first, before adding more on top. Sprinkle the top with pepper (I don't use salt but you could if you wanted to) and torn basil leaves if you have them.  As you can see from the picture below I didn't have any basil in tonight.

Pop into an oven at 180 degrees for about 45 minutes or until the cheese is all golden brown. If you are running late and don't have much time you can just stir it all up in one of the pans to gently warm it and then pop under a grill for about 15 minutes until it is all bubbling and brown.

The result...a meal for the whole family to enjoy (except me who is on a low carb diet). This one is very easy to make and very cheap too!  You can serve it with salad or vegetables and crusty bread. The girls love it served with chopped tomatoes and cucumber chunks and whatever does not get eaten gets divided up into child sized portions and frozen for another day.  Perfect.

Hope you enjoy

Karen x

Terrible Two's..Nightmare!

This post should have done better!!

Thanks to TheBoyAndMe I am getting another chance to show it off.  If you have a post that you think could have or should have done better then head over to her blog!

For those of you who follow me via twitter, you may already have noticed that I am having a little bit of trouble with my eldest daughter.

Poppy is 3 in July.  She has always been a little angel.  Slept through the night (7pm-7am) by four months, took to food like a duck takes to water, has always eaten anything I put in front of her (except Brussels) and generally been a pleasure to be around.  A gorgeous happy baby, a content toddler but in the past two weeks she seems to have turned into a MONSTER!!!!

I have asked myself the question what has changed, what are we doing differently, but the answer is absolutely  nothing.

There has been no change to her routine, Husband and I get on well so there are no problems at home, she has not started any new group's, attends the same Nursery one day a week and we continue to attend all the groups she enjoys and have play dates with the same friends. She does not eat any junk food or sweets so I am battling my brains for a reason for this behaviour.

So how is she behaving differently? Well she has started to become very defiant and stroppy..a bit like a teenager.  It can be about anything from me wanting to get her dressed and she doesn't want to, to she wants the cartoons on and I say no!  She will scream, shout, kick and generally cause a scene.  Luckily for me it is only when at home so far.  The kicking is very new but she has kicked her baby Sister twice, as well as both parents and the sofa.  She has also started doing lots of baby talk when she has an excellent vocabulary for a 2 year old.  I find this difficult because we don't do the whole baby talk thing ourselves we don't say "bubba", "doggy woggy" etc so she is not copying the way we talk to Rosie. She also does this annoying pretend crying. Oh and she has suddenly lost her appetite so mealtimes are not anywhere as pleasurable as they once were. All in all, she is being a complete pain!

What are we doing about it? Luckily, Husband and I are on the same wavelength and respond in the same way. We watched quite a bit of Super Nanny when I was pregnant! We have always had a very consistent approach to bringing up our girls. We make sure that we follow through on any threats, support each other and do the same thing. This means for Poppy: the naughty cushion, not let her have cartoons after her bath (she only has them on first thing in the morning and for the bedtime hour), or if Daddy is around for bedtime she may not allowed an ipad story (something he sometimes does with her and she loves). I will do a review on them at some point. We are also praising her when she is good and tell her regularly that good girls get lots of things (ie treats, trips out etc.) and bad girls get nothing.

However, even though we have a plan and stick to it, it is still not easy.  I have to try really hard to be calm and patient and not shout back as I do not want to be the kind of Mum that screams at her children.  I get down to her level and explain that " not acceptable behaviour and we do not do that/behave that way in our house" but inside I just want to scream " aaahhhhhhhhhhhhh do it because I say so!"

A few ladies on twitter answered my cry for help and told me it is an age thing.  They recommended books on disciple (which I am ordering) and reward charts.  Apparently sticker reward charts are so 90's and they do an iphone app so we are going to trial this and will let you know the results.  Any other advice would be gladly welcomed!

I am seriously hoping my little Angel comes back soon but in the meantime watch this space on how we are managing it!

Karen x
ShowOff Showcase

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

National Vegetarian Week - Recipe 2

Okay so it is day two of vegetarian week and my second recipie.  Lke everything I cook, it is very easy to prepare, doesn't take long and can be enjoyed by the whole family.  Both my girls love this served with chunks of fresh bread.

Leek, Onion and Potato Soup

You will need:

  • 4 large leeks
  • 1 medium onion peeled and chopped small
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 1/2 pints (850 ml) hot vegetable stock (we use vegetable Oxo cubes)
  • 10 fl oz (275 ml) milk
  • Freshly milled pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs oil for frying
  • Fresh chives or chopped parsley to serve

Start with trimming the leeks, discarding the outer layer.  Split them in half lengthwise and finely slice.  Wash well.

In a heavy saucepan gently heat the oil and then add the leeks, onion and potatoes, stiring them all around so they all get thinly coated in oil.  Season with pepper, cover and let sweat over a very low heat for about 15 minutes.

Next, add the stock and milk, bring to simmering point, cover and let simmer for a further 20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

Pour into a blender and blend to your desired consistency.  We like to have it thick with a few lumpy bits in it but its up to you. Return to the saucepan and reheat gently.  Finally stir in the chives or parsley and it is ready to serve. If you really want to, you could add a dash of cream or creme fresh before serving but we don't tend to bother.

Hope you enjoy

Karen x

Monday, 23 May 2011

National Vegetarian Week - Recipe 1

Apparently this week is National Vegetarian week. So being vegetarian I have decided to share some of my favourite recipes with you everyday this week.  Today's recipe is one I made up myself a few years ago.  I actually had it for supper tonight, luckily for me I am allowed this on my low carb diet.

Vegetable Mushroom Tower

This one is so easy, anyone can do it. Basically you take one (or as many as required) giant mushroom(s):

Top with chopped fresh tomatoes, spring onions and peppers. You could add anything else you like but there is not a huge amount of room on a mushroom.   I have used sweetcorn, pineapple and jalapeño peppers in the past (but not all together). You can be as inventive as you like.

Next sprinkled with a vegetable cube (1 cube will be enough for up to four mushrooms) and top with slices of Hulloumi cheese.  For those of you who don't know this is a Cypriot cheese and can be found in most supermarkets. Once it is ready place in an oven for about 30 minutes at 180 degrees.

The result is delicious:

The cheese is crispy on the outside, gooey in the middle and the stock cube mixed with the mushroom juices make makes a kind of sticky gravy.  For me being on a diet at the moment., it is the closest thing I can have to pizza.  I like to serve it with a large salad but you could also serve it with vegetables or whatever you like. Ordinarily, one would be enough but I was starving tonight so had two.


Karen x

MoMenTum - week 3

Hello again ladies,

Well I am still doing pretty well with my diet and exercise.

However, as you might know via twitter I am really  struggling with cravings for chocolate. This is unusual for me this far into a high protein/ low carb diet! However, I have tried eating nuts, drinking diet Coke and making sugar free jelly and cream but so far nothing has hit the spot. Today I am off to Boots to get myself some low carb Atkins chocolate bars!! I will probably do a little mini review on how good they are and if they rid my cravings once and for all! So watch this space!

The one thing I have noticed recently is that my shape has really changed since having babies and I am not at all happy about it. Obviously my boobs have got bigger, I would have expected that, but I did not expect my lower body to change so much.

Want to be hourglass again!
Now I am finding that my thighs have spread a bit and that my bottom is definitely bigger! Not a good look. I think Gok would tell me I was an hourglass and am now an apple shape.I am hoping through diet and exercise I will be able to change it back but it is taking longer than I thought.  I am about to be an ambassador (along with other members of this group) for Zaggora Hotpants.  I am hoping they are going to be the magic answer. They should be here in about two weeks so watch this space!

To help demonstrate I have decided to share a photo.  This was me at the Zoo yesterday.  I am definitely looking slimmer but still have a way to go! My legs are a long way off being ready for shorts but I am still hoping to get there. My face is thinner, my waist is smaller (although you can't tell in my unflattering top), my stomach is flatter than it has been in a while, oh and my boobs are back in the right place since I got rid of the nursing bras. So all in all I am doing okay but still need to keep it up!

Hope you are all doing okay too.  Good luck with this week and if you have just come across this blog hop for the first time, feel free to join us.  We are a lovely bunch of people supporting each other with shaping up for the Summer.

Karen x

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Were going to the Zoo, Zoo, can come too!

Today we went to the Zoo.  It was such a lovely family day out and we took some lovely photos that I decided to share them with youl. I was going to wait until tomorrow and just leave the one up for Silent Sunday but me being me, I'm not very good at being silent so here I am tonight.

We are Zoo members, something I would definitely recommend to other families.  You join one but get to use most of them around the Country.  We live pretty close to one, so go all the time, even in the Winter. There are things to do for the whole family: look at the animals, play in the soft play area or various play parks, enjoy a meal in the restaurant or a picnic in the grounds, take a train ride (we haven't yet) and generally just enjoy the walk around the beautiful grounds and a family day out!  Our tickets have been used so often we have definitely got our moneys worth and we don't feel like we have to spend the whole day there either as we go so frequently.  Often we just go for a few hours at a time.

Anyway, is one I took.  It was a close call between this one and the one I used for My Silent Sunday picture.  I think he looks very old:

This is one of Poppy and Daddy in the Elephant house.

Now Poppy loves going to the Zoo and asks to go every weekend, however, she likes to rush around the animals really quickly and instead is happy to just run along the paths and pick up sticks.  Typical two year old:

Today there were lots of peacocks out and both girls were fascinated by them.  The male ones looked very important strolling around the grounds.  I loved the one I used as my Silent Sunday post which was a close up but think this one is lovely too:

As I mentioned before, we go pretty regularly but today we discovered an area we have not been to before.  The crocodile swamp.  Daddy was very excited about this and I must admit there was a very pretty walk before it too.  This photo makes me smile:

Next we saw some goats.  I think they might have been a bit hungry as they kept trying to eat the buggy board and my Mummy bag:

Before we went home, we promised Poppy she could play in the park.  She wanted to go on this slide but couldn't get up by herself as it was for older children.  Anyway Daddy went with her and they did it a few time.  She was ecstatic:

Oh hang on, nearly forgot to put some of me on here.  Here is me with the girls and the giraffes.  I love seeing the giraffes and the orangutans best:

Here is one of me with Rosie.  However, she is too busy looking at her Sister in the background.  She was climbing sandbanks:

So all in all a lovely sunny day, enjoyed by the whole family. I love days like this. Zoo passes definitely recommended!

Karen x

Silent Sunday