Wednesday, 1 July 2015

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2015: The Show Gardens and More

As a newbie gardener, I have looked on longingly at the coverage of Chelsea and Hampton Court the past few years.  This year I swooned over Chelsea thinking next year, next year, but then - be still my beating heart! - we were invited to the RHS Hampton Court Press Day on Monday.  Woohoo!!  We arrived as guests of Olivier Blanc (son of Raymond) and his Henri le Worm garden team, and enjoyed their wonderful fruit and vegetable-packed garden and lovely Raymond's cookery demonstration (more on that later), but got to explore the rest of the show too.  I parked Steve and the girls in the children's area and headed off to the show gardens, conceptual gardens, and world gardens for a swoon...

Friday, 26 June 2015

Sponsored Video: The Vagisil Blush Index #EndEmbarrassment

Last weekend I attended a conference in London where one of the speakers was former TV presenter Carol Smillie.  She has recently entered the entrepreneurial arena making knickers with a waterproof lining, as she saw a gap in the market for young girls embarrassed by leaks during their period, or for post-natal mums, older mums, etc.  A great idea, but she has come up against a glass wall: no-one in the national media wants to talk about women's bits.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

A Picture of Health – Pet food and Exercise Tips for a Healthy Cat

Keeping pets at a healthy weight can be a real challenge for loving pet owners as those big eyes gaze at you beseechingly whenever there's food in the offing - yours or theirs!  But as those vastly overweight pets we see on TV programmes show, it is vitally important to maintain a healthy cat through diet and exercise.  Here are our tips on how to do just that.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Recipes for Lunch: Sourdough, 5 Ways

We recently tried out the new artisan gluten-free loaves from Newburn Bakehouse.  This is a rather unique addition to the allergy market, as Newburn Bakehouse have only two to three dedicated bakers who bake no more than 500 loaves per day.  When we suspected Sophia was gluten intolerant last year, we tried a number of gluten-free breads and most of them weren't great, but I would defy anyone to guess these loaves are gluten-free.  The Classic White Artisan Loaf was delicious and a great sandwich loaf.  We also sampled the White Sourdough Artisan Cob and decided to try out some different recipes with it, so here's our sourdough loaf, five ways.  Enjoy!

Monday, 22 June 2015

Family Celebrations are a Funny Thing

How did you celebrate Father's Day yesterday?  We had had such a crazy few weeks that I hadn't even managed to sit down with the girls to wrap Steve's presents or write his cards, oops.  Luckily, Mr Laidback isn't that bothered about that kind of thing, so was delighted anyway.  And we did manage to get out for a nice lunch with friends, so not all bad!  I'm still waiting for my 'proper' Mother's Day too, as we had a fun but rather slapdash one back in March too.  I don't know how people manage to get all these wonderful things organised, we just have too much else to do in life!

It [Was] National Picnic Week!

We LOVE picnics in this family.  I think the girls would quite happily eat al fresco on a beach, in a field, or at the park, most days, even when the weather isn't great.  This year our first picnic was on 4th January, at WWT Arundel on Sophia's birthday, and we pretty much haven't stopped picnicking since then.  Yet last week's big picnic event passed us by.  So why didn't you hear anything from us about National Picnic Week when it was actually on (13th - 21st June)?

Picnic hamper from Le Pain Quotidien

Parenting Prompt

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