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San Francisco

| On
Wednesday, February 01, 2017
san francisco

In December, we went on what was an absolute dream holiday for me! We went to Hawaii, and had a stopover in San Francisco for a few nights on the way. When I was younger, I used to be obsessed with America. I used to tell anyone who would listen that I was going to move there when I grew up! So it was so nice to finally visit, as even though I've done a lot of travelling this was my first time there.

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

san francisco

Some highlights of the trip:

  • The Golden Gate bridge. What can I say, it's just iconic.
  • Breakfast and window shopping at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market.
  • Mr Holmes Bakehouse. We had a doughnut and some monkey bread and it was delicious
  • Our first full day, we ended up just walking around the city and we saw so much, I think we walked 11 miles in total and I was exhausted the next day but it was so worth it!
  • Bonfire Night

    | On
    Sunday, November 06, 2016

    We had a little bonfire night celebration at my Mum's this year - just all us girls and our partners, some fireworks and food. It was lovely. I took my camera, I'm still not good at photographing at night but I really want to get better!

    ^^Sisters and their boyfriends

    ^^We got some sparklers out and of course we had to start playing with taking photos of them. I have dozens on my camera, all of silly words and patterns!

    ^^All us girls


    | On
    Friday, August 12, 2016

    Say hello to the latest addition to our family, Wesley. He's a 16 week old Boston Terrier puppy, and he is just the sweetest, most angelic little boy.

    Welcome to the family, Wes.

    Pom Pom Booties

    | On
    Thursday, June 09, 2016

    I haven't knit or crochet anything in what feels like ages so when my friend invited me to her baby shower last week, I decided I'd make her a present! I knew straight away that I wanted to make a pair of baby booties. I'd never made any before but I'd visited a little market the previous weekend and I'd seen a pair for sale and I knew I wanted to have a go at recreating them. As per ususal though I put off getting started on them, so I spent a glorious day the Saturday before the shower on the sofa, watching films with the dogs while Adam was at work. It was bliss!

    Part of the reason it took me a while to get started was because I just couldn't find a pattern that I liked. I'm not very good at seaming when knitting, so it had to be made in one piece. I searched Ravelry but the knitting patterns I saw looked a bit too complicated, or didn't have the right "look" I wanted. I decided to try crochet patterns, but again, I couldn't find quite what I was looking for. In the end, I found the Blue Whale pattern by Croby Patterns on Pinterest. I ended up using this pattern for the foot of the boot, following it up to round 5 and then I picked up the 27 remaining stitches and knitted the cuff in a k2p2 pattern for 22 rounds, turning it down and then sewing a pom pom onto each shoe. I'm so, so happy with how these turned out, and they were so quick, easy and used so little yarn; I'm already planning on making another pair or two to have on hand for baby gifts!

    My Best Friend's Wedding - Hen Do Edition!

    | On
    Friday, June 03, 2016

    Last weekend was the hen do of my best friend in the whole world. We've been friends for probably around 20 years now. I love her to bits and couldn't be without her and I'm so happy for her and her husband-to-be!

    We had a tour around a local vineyard (yes, a vineyard in the wilds of Yorkshire! The wine was amazing) and then a meal with some drinks and rude games (obviously, no hen do would be complete without that!) and the next day, brunch at one of our favourite places, a local farm. It was so much fun. Some more photos below!

    Chicken Pulau with Mint and Coriander Raita

    | On
    Monday, March 07, 2016

    Rice is always a favourite in our house, and even more so since I've been experimenting with some new recipes. This chicken pulau has become a staple here, and we're serving it up at least once a week - normally with a simple salad and raita although in these pictures I made up some potato and spinach pakoras with some pakora flour I was given from a friend, and this tandoori popcorn chicken. It was so good! The recipe for the pulau is based on this one but I adapted the recipe somewhat to make it healthier as I recently started following Slimming World and wanted to make this dish free on the plan.

    Chicken Pulao


    300g white basmati rice
    1 onion
    3 cloves garlic
    ½ green chilli (omit or add more to taste)
    1 chicken stock cube
    1 tbsp cumin seeds
    1 chicken breast


  • Put rice to soak in a bowl filled with warm water for 20-30 minutes
  • Finely dice the onion, garlic and chilli
  • Fry onions, garlic, chilli and cumin seeds in a saucepan with frylight or other low calorie cooking spray. If the onions start to stick, then add a splash of water. You want the onions to get nice and dark but without burning them
  • Finely dice chicken
  • Make up stock cube with 330ml boiling water
  • Drain and rinse rice
  • Add chicken to pan and stir to seal the chicken
  • Add the rice to the pan. Don't stir, but flatten it all down so it makes one even layer across the bottom of the pan
  • Add the stock
  • Cover the pan with a lid, and turn the heat onto high until the liquid begins to boil
  • Turn the heat down to the lowest flame
  • Now, step away from the pan! Don't be tempted to stir it. You need  to leave it, covered, until all the water has evaporated. It usually takes about 10 minutes, but I have a glass lid for my pan so I can see through to see when all the water has gone. When I can see that all the water has been absorbed, I sometimes crack the lid a tiny bit and using a fork, taste some of the rice to make sure it's done. Then I set the lid back on for five more minutes.
  • Stir everything through, and serve!

    Coriander and Mint Raita


    1 tbsp mint sauce
    Small bunch fresh coriander
    250ml fat free natural yoghurt


  • Roughly chop coriander, stalks and leaves
  • Add yoghurt, mint and coriander to a food processor with a pinch of salt
  • Blend until smooth
  • Ombré Cake

    | On
    Thursday, March 03, 2016
    Ombré Cake

    This cake was supposed to go with my other Valentine's Day themed posts but I didn't get chance to post it. No matter; cake is good for any time of the year! I used a simple, classic Victoria Sponge for the cake itself. With a Victoria Sponge cake, you first weigh your eggs, and then weigh out your sugar, butter and flour in equal portions to match. I used two medium eggs, which gave me enough mixture to make 9 buns, or alternatively would make a small 6 inch cake. Traditionally, a full cake is made with 3 eggs, but the method is the same. I've shared how to make a traditional victoria sponge cake below, if you'd like the recipe!

    Ombré Cake

    Victoria Sponge Ombré Cake


    Self raising flour
    Gel food colouring

    For the cream:

    300ml whipping cream
    1 tsp vanilla extract
    1 tsp icing sugar


    Preheat oven to 180℃

  • As per note above, weigh out three eggs and make a note of the weight
  • Weigh out equal measures of the self raising flour, butter and sugar to the same as the eggs weight
  • Cream butter and sugar together in mixing bowl
  • Beat eggs together, and add a drop at a time into the butter mixture. It's important to add slowly and get a lot of air for a light, fluffy cake. I mix mine in my kitchen aid type appliance. As you're adding the eggs, you might notice that the mixture appears to "split". If this happens, don't worry: the cake might not be quite as light, but it is not "off" and it will not affect the taste
  • Once all the egg is added to the butter mixture, start folding in the flour, a spoonful at a time until combined
  • Divide mixture into five bowls
  • Add food colouring. Start with just one drop in the first bowl, and then double the amount of drops for each subsequent bowls, so: 1 drop, 2 drops, 4 drops, 8 drops, 16 drops. I find gel food colouring to be by far the best I've tried, but you can use any.
  • Pour mixture into prepared cake tins, be sure to keep a note of which order of light to dark they go
  • Bake in the oven for around 20 minutes, but check regularly. The cake should be golden brown when cooked, will spring back when you gently press the top, and a skewer inserted into the middle should come out clean
  • Leave to cool
  • Whip cream with vanilla extract and icing sugar
  • Reserving half the cream mixture, spread a quarter of the remaining half over the top of the darkest cake, and then sandwich the second lightest on top, repeat for remaining cakes
  • Spread cream over sides and tops of cake and decorate with sprinkles!

    Ombré Cake
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