Pre Empty Nest Syndrome? Is this what I have?

Not quite a teenager and not a little boy content with running up to his mummy and back. My little boy is growing up and I’m finding it hard.

 

When I saw my eldest son ‘M’ for the first time, it took my breath away. The moment is always with me and I look back and talk about it whenever I can….here with you, with the kids and with my friends. The feeling was no different with my second boy ‘G’. I’ve always had a strong drive to keep both of my boys safe and a bit wrapped up in cotton wool. Those that know me would nod along now and hopefully smile in recognition as I’m probably the most over protective of the lot. I’ve heard of empty nest syndrome but never pre empty nest syndrome….my babies are still at home, just growing up.

empty nest syndrome
‘M’ aged 4….he’s 11 now. Oh how time has flown.

As my eldest reaches towards 12 I am having a few moments when I struggle with him taking that next step towards teenagehood and being more independent. I think maybe it’s because it’s the start of another school year and so many different questions….and behaviours have begun to show.

The reluctance by him to spend as much time with me has been something to get used to. Having him want to spend time alone, chatting with his friends without wanting me around is something new.  I love it so much, that he’s growing up and he has lovely friends who all get on and laugh at their own in-jokes. However, I’m now looking on at this and not instigating it. It’s not created by me – for him…..I’m not included as much, wow, when did this happen? I’m starting not to be the only big thing in his world. It’s a bit of a shock!

empty nest syndrome
He looks alot different now but I couldn’t resist these of when he was smaller.

The full on unashamed spontaneous hugs have also started to fizzle out, when they do come it’s magical and I crush him in my embrace. He does that ‘ok mum’ and giggles, knowing that I will undoubtedly now ruffle his hair which he has just preened and styled to an inch of its life.

My rational side knows that I am proud of what we have achieved. This is what I have been preparing him for so why does it give me a lump in my throat even writing about it?

I know that being a parent is to nurture and care for our young and I realise that they are not to be owned by us. We have to prepare them and set them on their own unique path. I hadn’t realised until now that the notion of this would be so hard, I had been in the caring role for so long.

It’s all such a learning curve being a parent. I’m always amazed at the different emotions it brings.

Am I alone or is this normal or even normal-ish? Do you ever get these feelings?

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Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

 

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Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide – Part 2

It’s time for Part 2 of my Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide. So glad you could join me again.

Another chance to showcase some wonderful companies offering gifts which have presents that I personally love. If you are like me then it’s often the gifts we would love to have ourselves that we end up buying for others. Have a look and why not treat yourself along the way! There is also a chance to win in our great giveaway below.

Enjoy and let me know your favourites and who you would like to see featured again. You can also see my Gift Guide and Giveaways Part 1 by following the link.

Red Candy

I am a big fan of Red Candy and have featured them before here.

If you like really cool, modern gifts then redcandy.co.uk is the place to go. I love this VW Campervan Magazine rack. This retro creation uses a quirky cut out design to display all of the campervan detail, including the windows, doors, and headlamps.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

It’s a really good size at: 24cm x 40cm x 14cm. It comes in 5 colours; Red, Green, Black, Blue and Yellow. It costs £19.00 which affordable considering how well made it is and makes a substantial christmas present.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

If you want a kitchen gift with a difference then how about this Elvis Joseph Joseph Worktop Saver. Priced at £14.90 it’s great value. It has a lifetime guarantee, ensuring it will stay very much alive, no matter what food comes into contact with it, so you can enjoy it for years to come.

You can follow their news on   here @redcandyuk

Taylor + Rani

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

Taylor + Rani was started by Isobel who is a print and pattern designer. Isobel is an avid traveller and doer. They make beautiful, stylish and comfortable underwear for girls and teens.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

The bralettes are reversible, you simply remove the straps and turn around. The bra pads are removable via the side seam where there is a purpose hole. The pads do not need removing for washing, just leave them in place.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

Taylor + Rani have a team of researches who look at how they work with each charity partner to find the best way they can provide help in a sustainable manner.

They are currently partnering with a charity that works in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Sierra Leone to help girls stay in education longer. Young girls in that part of the world often miss out on completing their education due to lack of access to toilets and/or sanitary products. Purchases of their products provides equipment and support to make this happen. You are actually helping such a worthwhile cause by buying this great gift. #brasthatdogood is the one hashtag that you should use today!

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

Their collections are varied in colour and themes and all look stunning and comfy. Have a look here. I will be carrying out a focused review of this forward thinking company in the new year and will let you all know when this comes out.

You can imagine how pleased I am to be able to offer a great giveaway of a set of underwear to one lucky reader. Enter using the rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 Hotwaterbottleshop.co.uk

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

If you love to soothe aches and pains and to feel warm and snuggly then the hotwaterbottleshop.co.uk is perfect for you. A family business working side by side, they have developed a beautiful range of hot water bottles, microwaveable body warmers (such as feet warmers, body wraps, eye masks) and microwaveable toys.

They have a fab blog which has useful information such as 5 tips to making the most of your microwavable warmer. I also liked the post that gave safety information on how to fill a water bottle. My nan used to always give me a water bottle when I was little and stayed at her house. I would love to stand and watch her knowing that I would have the treat of curling up next to her with it and drift off to sleep. It brings back very happy memories.

I couldn’t resist featuring this cute owl hot water bottle with cover. It’s capacity is  0.8 litre which uses an ultra-modern, thermoplastic rubberless design. It’s easy-to-use, comfortable and eco-sustainable too.  These hot water bottles are made from 80% renewable materials, are PVC free, recyclable and unlike many other hot water bottles they are odourless. Priced at £18.99 you can buy it here.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2

For something next that I have been wanting for a long time and finally have, it’s a Peony Scented Floral Microwaveable Body Wrap.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2
Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 2So many times I come home from work or even after a day running around after the kids and I realise I am aching all over. This microwavable body wrap is lovely for warming up and draping over your shoulders or wrapping around your back. This one is infused with Peony essential oils so smells fantastic. There is a peony pattern on one side which is shown in the pictures here and on the reverse is a soft fleece material. As with many of the products on the site, this can be frozen to be used as a cold compress when needed. Ideal christmas present. Length = 49cm, Width = 14cm.

Look! A Discount voucher just for you!

Use at the checkout: XMAS1166

This gives you 20% off all orders over £15 with hotwaterbottleshop.co.uk before the end of the year. One use per customer.

  @hotwaterbottle2     hotwaterbottles

 

If you like personalised gifts – like me! then how about a Monogrammed Soap Gift Box. You have 4 beautifully crafted soaps in a gift box. You can have a single initial or triple initial monogram. This is something so different and adds a touch of luxury to your gift. The soaps are vegetable based and triple milled which means that you get a gorgeous soapy lather that feels great on your skin. More than just a stocking filler!

I hope you have enjoyed part two of my christmas gift guides. Please see part one here for more ideas and chances to win.

What are you most looking forward to at christmas? Have you started your shopping yet?

 

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Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide – Part 1

Gifts, ideas, giveaways and voucher codes, I’ve a month of Christmas themed posts that will something for everyone. Thank you all for such a great year, I’ve loved having you along to my blog!

This year I am in full preparation mode for Christmas and have compiled an amazing christmas gift guide and bumper giveaways post that should have you inspired and even save you some pennies.

We are lucky enough to see great gifts from people I have showcased before on the blog and some new products that are hand picked to present presents that will suit all ranges of prices and tastes. Every gift here is something I would love to be given and also be proud to hand over wrapped in a big bow!

Enjoy this gift guide and let me know which ones are your favourites in the comments box at the bottom of the post. Also see my Gift Guide and Giveaways Part 2 here.

Kartegraphik

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

Kip Perdue is a paper cutting artist based in South London, England. He has one of the best websites at Kartegraphik I have seen in a long time. It takes you on an informative journey through his artists mind and evokes a wonder in his beautiful creations. Kip produces wonderful cut out maps. These maps are perfect for gifts at Christmas and I’m very pleased that they are the first of this years products to be featured. I commissioned a map of Bournemouth Gardens because when my other half and I had our first date we went on the Bournemouth balloon which was tethered there and offered flights which overlooked the town. To have that experience where we saw the town from the sky and then to have this intricate and cool artwork is another piece of our own history mapped on our wall.

The map is the best of both worlds, a quick, customisable, and above all personal gift! The map is a one square mile map, so it is centred upon a specific location and will be cut to show one mile from that centre point.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1The gifts are reasonably priced and so unique that they are something that will always get people talking and commenting. People won’t be trying to remember what you bought them a few years ago, it will instantly come to mind. Furthermore it shows thought, and everyone likes to feel special.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

Have a look at Kip on his social media sites also

 kartegraphik

 kartegraphik

Kip and I are offering one lucky reader the chance to win a 21cm (8.25in) Square Mile Personalised Map. A truly super prize. Good luck!

Enter in the rafflecopter below. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Hugzzies

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

This is a super cute gift to give to anyone who likes a nice snuggle.  There are 5 adorable charachters to choose from. They have a microwavable lavender infused wheatbag inside them and they hug around you giving a comforting feeling. Priced at £9.99 it’s a good quality, reasonably priced gift that will bring a smile to their faces!

Why Choose Hugzzies?

• A Super soft high quality Individual Character Teddy Bear • Velcro Waist band • Removable lavender infused microwaveable wheat bag • Children’s bum bag for toys • Hugzzies can be used either Hot or Cold • Helps and eases pain relief • Bodywarmer • Keeping cool in the summer

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

You can say hello to the  Hugzzies on  here.


 

bakerdays

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

At bakerdays you get the personalised experience that can make a cake look extra special and light up the room brighter than any candle. The cake is scrummy, the delivery is speedy and the ordering a breeze! Really, what’s not to love?

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

It works on a streamline ordering system; choose, post, deliver! With a delicious cooking part in between!

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1
It’s packaged so well with added extras. A perfect party package!

I had a Halloween cake delivered for my dinner party with my friends. It was such a highlight to the evening. They didn’t know that it I’d had it made and it was a real surprise! The picture is of us at the party the previous year in our fancy dress and face paint.

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1

Bumper Giveaways Christmas Gift Guide - Part 1
Looks great on my halloween table!

I am delighted to say that I have a letterbox cake to giveaway to one of my lucky readers.

Enter in the rafflecopter giveaway below to win. The more times you enter the more chances you have.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

All the giveaways featured in this post are open to people with a UK posting address. See my contacts page for more details.

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I hope this has given you some food for thought and kicked off the festive season with a good look at some treats on offer. Let me know what you think and what you have planned.

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5 Tips on Buying a Family Car

If you are thinking of what you need when buying your family car. Have a look at my top tips which I found have been really useful to us.

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The cars that I have bought over the years have changed so much. Not only that but the types of cars that are available now are so much smarter than when I first started driving.

I remember the old mini that I first passed my test in, it was a little beauty but rather temperamental. When it was cold I would have to bump start it down a hill behind my flat just to get it started! I didn’t think too much of it at the time, it was just what I needed to do to get it going. It’s a different story now though, so many more things to think of. Mainly that I am a mum now and I have to take different things into account.

So, it’s a good way to pass on some tips that I have learnt over these past few years. Here I have my..

5 Tips on Buying a Family Car

1. Safety, this has to be the number one thing for me now. Since having children the whole priority on what I need from a car has changed. Cars.com is great because it’s packed full of information about different cars, makes and models. Plus, it has other helpful information as well, including car seat safety check tips and more!

2. How many people are going to regularly travel in the car. We now have a car that normally seats 5 but has 2 emergency seats that turns it into a 7 seater when needed. It’s great to have that flexibility to do that without having the size that a full 7 seater needs all of the time.

5 tips of buying a family car
How many seats do you need?

3. How long to you plan to keep the car? Our discussions are around the money we pay versus how long we plan on keeping it. If your children are younger and you need the space for longer then you need a car that has a good reputaion for lasting and holding it’s value.

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4. Space around the car. By this I mean roof rack and bike rack. See what added space the car can offer. Last year we put a bike rack on that holds up to 3 bikes comfortably. We also have the option of a top box if needed. This all makes a big difference when going on day trips and holidays. It’s better to have the inside of the car clutter free for us.

5. My last tip might seem a bit more frivolous but don’t be fooled. I’m talking about interiors! Bright white leather does look stunning and I’m sure that the latest glossy mags show it off to its glorious best. Now come back down to earth and you will realise that a family car is going to get grubby hand and footprints in every conceivable place. Think long and hard about this often overlooked accessory on a family car. Choose wisely!

5 tips on buying a family car

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Let’s start promoting!

When I was preparing for my recent trip to London to go to Brit Mums Live 17 it suddenly struck me that I didn’t have any publicity material.

I started seeing my fellow bloggers showing their bright spangly business cards on their tweets. People were really prepared and I felt a bit left behind in the promotion stakes. So I thought, let’s start promoting!

I have had it in the back of my mind for a while now that I would like to start having some material or products with my logo on it. I’d love to see my brand displayed on clothes or bags, it would be so cool. When I first designed my logo I was just beginning and it seems like a long time ago.

So I got to it and thought about what I’d like. First up was some business cards. I designed these on my computer and chose the wording with the aim in my head that it was a welcome card to come see my blog.

let's start promoting
My home made business blog cards!

Does it work? I’m not sure but I do know that the understated look works for me. I still won’t have my picture on it but it still represents me in a way that I’m happy with.

I also used Bags of Love who make beautiful personalised gifts with photos of your own designs. They have just about everything you could want to have your photo printed on from personalised suitcases to hot water bottles. Their photo gifts are very impressive.

let's start promoting

Everything is handmade in the UK, built to last and sent out nice and quickly. If you are impatient like me then it’s great!

The bag is perfect for me, it’s very stylish and has loads of room for all kinds of shopping or work material I may have.

It’s also got little pockets on the inside for money and things I need to get to in a hurry! I spend far too long scrabbling around in the bottom of my bags for my car keys so this is a real plus for me.

let's start promoting
I chose pale blue on the sides to compliment my blog logo

So I think I’m just about set for the moment. I like the idea of having some really nice looking journal, so I think that will be my next project.

Can you think of anything else that I could use as promotional pieces?

What’s the quirkiest thing you’ve seen?

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I was gifted the bag for the purpose of reviewing the service. The cards I made myself! It all came together at the right time!

How Quality Child Care Can Affect Your Child

How Quality Child Care Can Affect Your Child

How Quality Child Care Can Affect Your Child

As a parent, we all want to give our children everything that we can, and one of the best places to start is education. Embracing your child’s natural curiosity and creating a positive learning experience from a young age will give them the tools that they will need to succeed in life. When you send your child to day care, you should choose an establishment that is of high-quality, as well as a good reputation, and that will help your child to develop into a wonderful person.

Communication And Interaction Skills

When you send your child to child care in Sydney, or anywhere else, it will be a new experience to which they are not familiar. However, one of the first lessons they will learn is how to interact appropriately with each other and enhance their overall communication skills. They will learn to follow simple instructions and also to get along with each other. Having excellent communication skills and being able to interact with other members of society are essential skills for them to succeed in their lives.

Create A Hunger For Learning From New Experiences

One thing that you may find when your child starts to attend nursery for the first time is that they develop a hunger for learning and trying new things, which is common in many children. The newly found passion can be something that they will take with them into their adult lives, always wanting to learn more, try new things, and expand their horizons.

Help To Develop And Heighten Their Senses

When you immerse your child in a creative learning environment, you will also help to develop and enhance their five main senses which are;

  • Sight
  • Sound
  • Touch
  • Taste
  • Smell

As well as these main senses your child will also benefit from the development of other senses such as balance and special awareness. When they are introduced to new situations with strange sights, sounds, smells, and so on, it will heighten their senses and help them to be comfortable with new surroundings and people.

Becoming Adaptable And Self Sufficient

Another significant benefit of sending your child to a quality child care centre is that they will learn to adapt to new situations and people, and also start their long journey on the way to self-sufficiency. The road is a long one, and it will be many years before they are ready to fly the nest, but giving your child these essential life skills from an early age will provide them with the tools that they are going to need to be successful in their lives.

If your child is coming to the age where they are ready to start nursery school, take your time and look at all of the options that are available. Choose a facility that excites your child and will nurture their hunger for learning, take a look at various local government websites for advice from the government on schools in New South Wales or wherever you live. Visit and speak to each establishment and choose the option that will give your child the start in life that they deserve.


This is a collaborative post

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The Best Butternut Squash Recipe

I like to try all the different vegetables on offer and this week I had an organic box delivery which had a great Butternut Squash nestled inside.

I wanted to make the most of what I could do with it so I have devised the best butternut squash supper recipe I can imagine which is great for all the family.

Luckily my boys and OH love their food and will try all the different dishes that I come up with. My eldest son loves sweet potatoes and I think that the butternut squash looks very similar. They have had it before but not like this, being made the star of the show!

The Best Butternut Squash Recipe
Quartered and with the seeds removed
4.75 from 4 votes
The Best Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe
Print
The Best Butternut Squash Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Total Time
50 mins
 

The Best Butternut Squash Recipe. Great for all the family to enjoy.

Course: Main Course
Servings: 6 people
Author: mainy - myrealfairy
Ingredients
  • 1 Butternut Squash
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper To personal taste
  • 200 g Quinoa
  • 50 g Parmesan Cheese
Instructions
  1. Slice the Butternut Squash into 4 or 6 slices depending on how large it is.

    Place on a baking tray with lining paper

    Sprinkle on the olive oil

    Add salt and pepper to taste


    The Best Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe
  2. Roast in the over for 40 minutes

  3. Cook the Quinoa for the required time depending on pre cooked or part cooked.

  4. Take the Butternut Squash out of the oven and immediately grate over the parmesan cheese. 

  5. Serve straight away with the cooked Quinoa.

    The Best Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe
Recipe Notes

Tastes great with shredded cabbage!

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I’d love to know that you think of this supper dish and if you are a fan of butternut squash.

the best butternut squash recipe

If you like easy, delicious recipes then I think you will love my Easy Focaccia Bread. Try these two together and wow your friends and family.

the best butternut squash recipe


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Things that make you go eerrgh!

This was a post I wasn’t going to write, I had no intention to put my fingers to the keyboard and spell out the continuation of my throat saga. If you remember my poem The Silence that was the start of my throat problems and I had hoped it would all be done and dusted by now.

But no, a couple of months ago I sat here writing looking like this:

Things that make you go eerrgh!

I had to go and have an 24hr PH test. The tube goes down my throat and sits down in my oesophagus. For 24hrs this had to stay there doing it’s thing and measures the amount of acid that wells up (refluxes) from your stomach into your oesophagus, and helps to find out if your symptoms are caused by acid reflux which is the flow of the stomach contents back into the oesophagus. It sounds strange and it is but the effect on my throat so far has been so painful and sore that I had become desperate to find out the cause. The tube, as you can see on the picture runs out of the nose and is taped to the side of my face and leads down to a contraption which records all of the data.

What you can’t see is that when I opened my mouth you can see the white coated tube running down the back of my throat, it’s bizarre! That’s why I had to entitle this post; Things that make you go eerrgh! There’s nothing I like less than seeing other peoples medical bits and bobs.

Probably one of the biggest fears I had to conquer was actually having the tube threaded up my nose and down my throat. It just goes against every natural instinct in my body. Suffice to say I gagged, put up my hand like the nice doctor said I could if it got too much and we all stood there not moving until I had the balls to motion to carry on. It’s horrendous and I couldn’t really get over that fact. I’m a whimp and it was clear to see.
via GIPHY

After some dramatics and copious amounts of tears coming out of my eyes due to the effect of gagging and the feeling on my nose, it was finally down and sitting in the right place inside of me.

Things that make you go eerrgh!
A little anatomy lesson!

Here you can see that there’s quite a long piece of tube needed to go down and dangle there catching the data. It stops just before the sphincter. When I ate I had to push the relevant buttons on my little hip pack to show that I was eating or drinking. This would be transferred to the printout when it came the following day so that it reflected the correct results. The same for if I laid down to sleep. If I had any of the symptoms then I could record that too. Acid feelings and those sorts of things would show up by way of an electro mark and all add to what they could find out. The doctor could see that I was not at all comfortable with it being there and although it should be in for 24hrs I asked what the minimum was. Reluctantly he said to try to get past 4hrs. It was like that statement sparked off a mental countdown timer in my head that I didn’t even know I had.

By the time it got to the early hours of the morning I was so freaked by the feeling of it going down the back of my throat that I took it out myself. Really strange feeling. I took a deep breath and gently peeled off the cotton sticky plasters holding the tube in place around my nose. Then, really really carefully and nice and slow, I started to pull the tube out of my nose. Mind over matter had to come into play once again. Finally after a few seconds which felt a hell of a lot longer, the ends of the tubes came out of my nose. What a feeling that was, I gave a little whoop of joy and was immensely relieved that it had come out so smoothly and was over and done with.

I had the best couple of hours sleep ever after that! So pleased that it was behind me. It seems like a natural end to this particular post. I’ll do another update soon and let you know how it’s all going. Thank goodness it’s done for the time being though.

Have you ever had to have one of these procedures or anything similar, come on, let’s share some stories!

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Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

Stunning Stourhead National Trust EstateWe had a real treat recently with our trip to Stourhead which is a National Trust estate with huge gardens and house. We won a family ticket which was a thrill in itself and we wanted to go somewhere that we hadn’t previously heard of.

My OH and I had a look through the national trusts site. With our need to have somewhere; family friendly, a long walk and a good house to have a nose around, coupled with somewhere within 1 to 2 hrs drive, we settled on Stourhead in Wiltshire. It seemed to have all the elements that would suit us. It does state that no balls are to be taken for the kids and I can understand that they don’t want a football to go hurtling into all their beautiful plants and flowers.

We packed a good old family picnic in the morning and set out on our trip. It didn’t take too long to get there from our home in Dorset, just over an hour. Our prize ticket did work OK. I’m always a little worried when using a voucher or something that ‘the computer says no’ or there is a problem with that day or time being excluded. Everything was fine though.

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

The house is stunning and you can see from this view looking up from the gardens that it is framed really well by the care that is taken over the gardens. you can also see by the dark clouds that rain was a feature of our day too!

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

The literature and the information around the house charts the lives of the last family to have Stourhead, parents Henry and Alda Hoare and their only son Harry. The family were devoted to each other and to Stourhead. Behind the public rooms used for entertaining and shared with visitors were the intimate family spaces where the family could relax and be themselves.

As you move around the family home, you follow in the family’s footsteps from their arrival and through the war years. Henry and Alda were devastated when Harry was killed in World War 1. They gave Stourhead to the National Trust in 1946.

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

In the playrooms there were dressing up areas for the children to try on clothes from the era that the family were in residence. Our boys had some fun in there. It’s a good break if you are doing the tour in the house with children as they can let off a little steam without worrying that they will upset anyone.

There is also a picture quiz where they have to go round and find pictures of dogs in different paintings around the house. The boys love a bit of competition between themselves so it was another task to keep them occupied.

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

So much care and dedication was put into the gardens by the family, it was such a labour of love for them.

The greens should be ranged together in large masses as the shades are in painting: to contrast the dark masses with light ones, and to relieve each dark mass itself with little sprinkling of lighter greens here and there.

– Henry Hoare ‘The Magnificent’

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

Dogs are welcome across Stourhead’s countryside areas all year round. They are welcome in the landscape garden from March-October after 4pm, after 3pm in November and all day, every day from December-February.

Stunning Stourhead National Trust EstateThe kitchen gardens were in full bloom. The plants were massive and growing so well. I would of loved to chatted with one of the gardeners to get some tips but I didn’t manage to. In one of my posts where my OH made my pallet garden you can see what we have managed at home. I’m really chuffed with what we have managed on a small scale and for free! My dream would be to have a huge garden devoted to fruit and veg.

The visit was wonderful and I think the rain added to the day in ways that surprised me. There were times we had to stop and take shelter under some of the huge trees or hide under the arches. In those times we felt some more of the magic of Stourhead.

Stunning Stourhead National Trust Estate

Have you been there or visited other walks that you would like to share? I’d love to hear about it.

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Seriously Tasty Cheese Scone Recipe

When I was a young girl and staying with my nan on the weekends she would often bake with me. I remember the feel of the oversized apron tied around my waist, folded in the middle so that it wouldn’t trip me up.

One of the staple things we would bake together was scones; plain, fruit or cheese, all these would be made with her big hands over my little ones.

So, when I was looking for a tasty bake to make with my boys then cheese scones were a favourite choice.

The recipe and method are straightforward and ideas for moulding together quickly for a warm and wholesome savory treat.

Seriously tasty cheese scone recipe

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seriously tasty cheese scones recipe
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Seriously Tasty Cheese Scones Recipe

As the title says, these are seriously tasty and what's more is that they can be made in the blink of an eye!

Ingredients
  • 200 g Plain Flour
  • 3 tsp Baking Powder
  • Half tsp Salt
  • 50 g Butter
  • 100 g Cheddar Cheese
  • 20 g Parmesan Cheese optional
  • 60 ml Cold Water
  • 60 ml Milk
  • 1 Egg used for glazing
Instructions
  1. Pre heat oven to 200 ºC (185 ºC if using a fan oven)

  2. Measure and put the Flour, Baking Powder and Salt into a mixing bowl

  3. Combine well
  4. Add the Butter and rub together with the tips of your fingers until it looks and feels like wet sand
  5. Grate the Cheese and mix through with a large spoon
  6. Add the Water and Milk
  7. Work together with your hands but don’t hand longer than necessary
  8. Put out onto a lightly floured surface
  9. Press down to a thickness of 2cm and cut out in rounds approximately 5cm wide
  10. Put onto a baking tray and cook for 15mins until golden
  11. Allow to cool a little on a wire rack.

 

Seriously tasty cheese scone recipe

If you fancy another easy comfort food dish that you can make while you’ve got the oven on then try my Easy Toad in the Hole recipe

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Thank you nan, this ones for you.

Seriously tasty cheese scone recipe

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