Tuesday 24 April 2018

21 and 100

Aged 4 months

Aged 8 months

Aged 12 months

I may be biased but my baby boy was utterly adorable. He still is! He was 21 on the 21st April 2018. I did coffee and cake for anyone who would like to come and it was knackering for me, but enjoyable for everyone else! 
For the first time in forever, I baked. And I really enjoyed myself- I was very restrained and didst not lick my fingers at all! 
Birthday cake - plain with fresh cream was the request.

I also made a huge toffee fudge traybake and some SW friendly lemon, coconut and blueberry muffins. Best laugh of the day goes to Nanna V for discussing pet dogs with my friends and my two offspring. Nanna V said her neighbour had a poodle I think it was.  Oh, said my friend, we've got a cockerpoo.

Ahhh yes, said Nanna V, all knowingly, its one of those mixed race dogs!!!!!!!!! 

Everyone admired my bargainous 20p roses! 

It was a lovely day and Mr 21 was thoroughly spoilt! Hopefully he will remember it fondly. The day his mother made him stay in Aunt Ressie's Shady Pines home for the elderly ( all the Nannas and  grandads sat in the lounge ) and wouldn't let him go to the pub with his friends!!! 

So.... at my 38th weigh in tonight at SW, I've lost another 2lbs taking my total to a 
Doesn't seem possible or real! I celebrated with a hi if chocolate bar for 3syns! A bit of a ways to go yet but I'm taking it one week at a time, a pound at a time. No rush! 

I've pinned out my first Luna. I was going to cut out tonight and make a start, but I wanted to post this blog and then sleep. It's been a long hard day at work today. It's ok, I can wait. 

Hope everyone is well. 

Lots of love from 
Rachel *100lbs* Radiostar xxx

My new long service award seat is up and has been sat upon in my garden! 

Monday 16 April 2018

The knitting and stitching show Penrith 2018

Well, I just went for a look see. You know, as I do. I go for a look and see what's what.
It was my first ever time at a show like this. It. Was. Amazing! All the things to look at and touch and stroke and squish. All the lovely people I chatted to. ALL the things I brought home with me.....
It was £3 for a ticket. It was at Rheghed in Penrith. We arrived nice and early and went for breakfast in the VAIR nice cafe. I say we, I had an Americano and the HG had a sausage and bacon roll and a latte. I didn't take any photos of it but maybe I can find some on the tinterweb to show you...be right back. Not photos of the breakfast!! Of all the stalls!!

Oops I've been awhile - had to get up and make the HG's lunch. Egg and Cress sandwiches today.
No photos of the halls and stands that I could find but it was very hustley and bustley and crafsty and friendly and hellishly expensive!!! The items for sale were exquisite and actually quite bargainous - it's the amount of stalls one may have visitied and browsed and whoops there goes my contactless payment again!!!
My bag was bulging at the very well constructed seams! We may have been back to the car and emptied it once....

There was a free talk by the creator or the beautiful Luna Lapin. I met the lady and her husband at her stand beforehand not realising who she was. Then I re met her upstairs on her stand again after eager to purchase lots of things Luna Lapinney! I Amy SUCH an advertiser's dream I tell you! However, I'm quite the indulged spoilt brat because it was the HG who treated me on this stall, despite my ( weak and frankly feeble ) protestations, insisted on buying them for me! He says he's watched me not spend any money on myself for years and years - always putting others first and I cannot stop him!
Luna Lapin beautifulness

We took a picnic lunch which we had outside in the beautiful warm sunshine, then went back for another mooch around, with more chatting and more sympathy gathering for my poor fingers....
I shall explain..
I made Spag Bol on Friday, for Saturday. Always best the day after. As a treat and part of my SW plan, I had a piece of Lo-Dough ( low carb low calorie bread substitute I'd got to try - a bit like polystyrene if I'm honest and I won't get it again, but it's did the job visually ) which I topped with butter and garlic and parsley and 35g of grated Edam. I used a new grater. Let's just say my garlic bread was extra proteiney due to the fingerprints it had in it.
It meant I was more than useless on my phone and any sewing was out the window.

Some more gorgeous things, including the fairy fabric bought simply because it was glittery! Glittery fairies people. Come on!!

Anyhoo my wonderful weekend continued with the safe return of Mr 20 - not for much longer - who had been to Barcelona to see a band that he saw last week in Manchester and a celebratory meal of Salt and pepper chicken. It said use a red chilli. I did not have a red chilli, I had chilli flakes, but as I sprinkled them in, a handful fell in. I shrugged and swirled them in thinking they are not at potent as fresh. OH HOLY VOLCANO IN MY MOUTH LIPS ON FIRE. A handful of chilli flakes IS as potent as fresh. It was very tasty though! I had half a pot of fat free natural yogurt with some mint sauce stirred in on mine. Fusion cuisine and all that! Aunt Ressie's style!

I got this lovely card through the post from Miss23 "just because" and the message inside made me do mum tears!

Mr 20 turns 21 on the 21st and we are having open house for coffee and cake this year. He wants NO fuss andthis is fuss to him but tough! The cake he has requested is a simple fresh cream sponge and there will be other offerings about too. A SW friendly lemon drizzle I think. Some chocolate brownies and some shop bought cakes too because as ever TIME IS SHORT! There'll be photos etc I'm sure on the blog at some point of all the cakey goodness.

Freddie had been 'playing'  with Lola and this photo made me laugh a lot...Lola looks very non plussed.

Now I shall try and add some photos which will cause me grate ( HAHAHAHAHA) stress and cause the blog to jump about and have odd spaces betwixt the paragraphs.

Lots of love from
Rachel *Hot Lips* Radiostar xxx

Monday 9 April 2018

Harry’s story seven years on.

I pinched this off my sister to share with those of you who have followed Harry’s story.

“8th April. Harry's cancerversary. The day the word retinoblastoma became a reality. The day Harry's life started on a very different path than the one we had planned for him. We sometimes felt like we were lost, that the path was disappearing but then Harry found it again and has stayed on it with confidence and bravery that I am so proud of. I have often said Harry has defined his cancer and when you see him achieve amazing things every word is true. His life may be a little different, he will forever be labelled as different but he laughs in the face of visual impairment. He is accessing everything he needs through Braille, computers and technology. So yes, 8th April will always be tough, but not as tough as Harry 💕💕
1st pic taken 8/4/2011 2nd is Harry today.

Lots of love from Rachel *very proud Auntie* Radiostar xxx

Saturday 7 April 2018

Fantastic Friday

Well, I don’t know about you, but my Friday this week was fecking amazeballs! It was the one where my HG finished early and we set off and drove the 40 minutes or so, stopping off to buy some token gifts...as we went to meet one of my best bloggy chums IN REAL LIFE!!!
Now, I’ve had the absolute luck and pleasure to do this before and as then, it felt like we’d been best of friends for 100 years!
We spent a brilliant afternoon in the company of the lady what used to blog at Life at No38
We got on famously and rather more amusing were our respective other halves who got on like a housemon fire and were worse for gossiping than us! Three hours passed by in what seemed
Like minutes and it totally made my Easter Holidays. I feel very blessed to have such good friends both online and in real life and it makes me feel all warm and cosy inside! I actually love these ladies and their families who I’ve been lucky enough to meet up with.

Remember of course you really shouldn’t meet up with strangers off the internet.

Other things I have done with my time off school is a bit of all the things I love, seeing friends and family, knitting, sewing, faffing about here and there. I’ve had my eyes tested, glasses ordered, paperwork done, clothes for the charity bag sorted out, sold my now too big for me boots on the bay of e, cooked and eaten some corkers of meals, been texting and messaging a couple of the girls from my SW class who have been finding it tough to stay on track , not sure I’m helping or hindering - we will find out on Tuesday- bet they’ll have lost and I will have had my first gain!!!

One make I will share is a shopping bag I made this week. I found some neutral material that’s been in my stash for aaaaaages. I looked on the selvedge and read the name Sanderson and the name and designer and the year 2005, so I googled it. Have I told you this before?! It feels
Like I have! Anyway someone on the bay of e is selling it for £21.99 a metre. I had paid £3.50 for two
Metres! I could have made
Myself £44, except I chopped into it to make the lining for my cheap tea towel shopping bag!

I helped my friend make some cushion covers for her new dining chairs using pillow cases she got From home bargains. 
Today I had to buy some new knickers after admitting defeat in wearing up what I’ve got after, in the safety and privacy of my own bedroom, my old favourites completely fell down when I was getting dressed!!

Lots of love from 

Rachel *calmy stepped out of them and carried on* Radiostar xxx

Sunday 1 April 2018

Easter Sunday 2018

Happy Easter everyone. Hope you are enjoying your EASTER eggs - I read something so ridiculous the other day that a supermarket was advertising them as chocolate eggs because that is what they are made of and it's better for the customers (sic) ..... what poppytosh! I cannot STAND the way we are being forced to bloody well stop what we are doing/saying in case it offends someone. FGS tough sh*t. It's Easter,  we have Easter Eggs because of the fact the UK is a Church of England country at its heart. Yes, we are a global melting pot of all - but then all should be mindful of where they are choosing to be living. If we are accepting -then everyone should be. I could go on but then someone somewhere would accuse me of hate speech no doubt.. and I've other waffle to impart.
**puts soap box away**

I am not going to be enjoying an Easter egg. One reason is I didn't buy any and the other is a cream egg is 9syns - so I actually could if I wanted - but I choose not to! Freedom of choice and all that. Instead I'm going to have my version of hot cross bunnery.

*Aunt Ressie's™ Hot Cross Breakfast 'cake'. 5.5 syns  for the lot
50g all bran - Healthy Extra b choice
2 eggs - free

25g mixed peel -3.5 syns
14g box raisins chopped - 2 syes
2 big spoons of quark- free
Zest of a lemon and an orange- free
Few drops Lemon and orange essence- free
Enough fat free natural yogurt to loosen -free

Put everything in a large bowl and whisk together until combined well.
Pour the batter into what you'd like to bake it in! I used an old ready meal container lined with a loaf tin liner. Sometimes I bake them in muffin cases, others in my enamel dish. It's up to you. It does stick to the sides so you can spray with frylight or cake release spray.

It's nice warm or cold and also huge and is legal portion for one meal! I cannot eat it all in one go so it'll last me the day as breakfast served with fruit and a dollop of yogurt, a nice treat with a cup of tea and then as pudding with ice cream and more fruit for tea! I do not feel deprived or as if I am missing out because the feeling of trying on smaller clothes only to find they are a bit big, beats the two minute joy of shoving a thickly buttered sticky toffee hot cross bun from M&S ( whaaaat??? I'm only human - it is hard to stand at the tills and ignore the siren call of all the good things!) in one's cake-hole!

I tell you what, since starting this SW lark, I have totally got inventive in the kitchen, hence forth
the Aunt Ressie's™ range!


I made campfire stew in the slow cooker over night - not one of mine but from a recipe website that writes low calorie recipes, counting syncs for SW and points for WW and it's called pinch of nom.
The campfire stew is one of my absolute favourites. It is so tasty and so cheap and would easily feed a family of ten! With leftovers! Basically you chuck a tin of baked beans, a tin tomatoes and a tin of kidney beans or whatever else you have into a slow cooker. Add chopped carrot and onion -and here I also add in veg Imhave in like courgette and leek. Add sliced peppers and mushrooms. Add paprika, ground cumin, ground coriander and some chilli flakes, some Worcester sauce and Tabasco - I never add the Tabasco on account t of I don't have any. Then take a gammon joint that's been soaking in cold water, remove all the visible fat and plonk it in the slow cooker on top of all the other ingredients. You can push it down into the mix. Lid on and cook on low for minimum of 8 hours.

With two forks shred the gammon joint into chunks and stir to distribute throughout the stew. Turn it to high.
Then add in some more sliced peppers and I add some frozen green beans. Leave the lid off if it's a bit watery, add a bit of water if it's a bit thick. After about 30 minutes, it's done.
Then eat a number of ways!
I have it with chips and peas, in a jacket potato with salad, with pasta, in a dish on its own with bread., as a pie filling ( using a WW wrap  or like here, just on a giant bed of leaves!
It is so so so tasty and totally free on the SW plan.

Here is the link to this amazing website http://pinchofnom.com/recipes/syn-free-campfire-stew/

I've been totally and utterly spoilt by my wonderful HG. He has only gone and bought me a brand new fancy pants sewing and embroidery machine.

So far I've only just started dabbling with bits and bobs with her - as yet unnamed. I've mended my nephew' hoody putting in a new zip for him. I had an hour before we were going to see my little great niece for her birthday so I made a little bag for her out of some old jeans and embroidered her name on it.

I've also made myself a couple of hams and a pin cushion - nipped to pets at home last night for sawdust and shavings to stuff them with. I've loads of projects on the go and in my head! I've also something rather sweet on the needles but I want to wait until it's done for my show and tell! We had a little trip to that massive Swedish warehouse to get some shelving and a little set of drawers on casters that I will have at the side of me when I'm sewing instead of my essentials balancing in a box balancing on my little step stool at the side of me! I'm going to make a small portable ironing/cutting pad to go on these drawers so I don't have to keep getting up and walking AAAAALLLLL the way ( about 4 steps ) to the other table in my room!! The walking is ok - good for prevention of DVT but annoying when you just need a quick press or cut and back to the stitching.

I've been collecting some MORE gorgeous fabric from the North East as we went to see Miss 23 last weekend. We spent the day in a wonderful place called the slightly unglamorous Seaton Sluice!

Seaton Delaval Hall. 

I'm sure I've forgotten the other stuff I was going to waffle on about but I've forgotten. I tell you what though, I was BLOWN AWAY by the supportive and congratulatory comments on my last post. I've had emails and messages thanking me for writing it. Surprisingly, a lot of young uns are already light years ahead of me and are using these products  already! I'm also fair jealous that lots of my lovely bloggy clan is no longer in need of such items! And well done to Philip for making it through to the end!!

So, I'm off to eat my hot cross baked all bran and start enjoying my day. Hope you have a peaceful day and you feel cherished and loved.

Lots of love from

Rachel *Easter Eggs or No eggs* Radiostar xxx

*Aunt Ressie’s™️ Is obviously a joke brand based on that old lady who my dad has a close relationship with his his freezer! She keeps him well fed when he can’t be bothered to make from scratch! It’s just an in joke me and my friends in real life coined when I share some of my frankly ridiculous concoctions usually evolved from the bottom of the fridge manky veg!