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Find the Beautiful in Every Day….

Sometimes, when things don’t go to plan or I’m feeling a bit down, I think that the best thing way to deal with things is to look at the things that have happened in my day to make me even just a little bit happy – because just like the supermarket (can’t remember which), it all adds up!

The smallest things have been making me smile recently so I wanted to share them with you – flowers in a muddy field, smiles, squeals, cake and even a bath!

tulips in a field

a smile

aa smile

april siblings 3

a cake

a bath

And while we’re on the subject of looking for happy things, have you seen the lovely shiny new Embrace Happy site that Karin from Cafe Bebe has set up?  If you haven’t, I really recommend you have a look!

Parenting Pin it Party #48….

I was away last week in Wales so I missed the Parenting Pin It party but I’m back this week and it’s my turn to host the party so please don’t be shy – link up a favourite post so I don’t feel like Billy no mates over here this week….

As always, there were so many great posts linked up to last week’s party and I struggled to choose two to feature but in the end I went with food ;-)

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Cream Egg Brownies from Jenny at Mummy Mishaps.

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 Pretzel Chicks from Carolin over at Mummy Alarm.

If you are stuck for inspiration for what to do with the kids this week, I’d definitely recommend having a look through some of the other posts that were linked up last week though.  I’ve got a whole list of things to do with them thanks to the great ideas linked up.

If you want to join in with this week’s party all you need to do is link up one of your parenting / family posts – t really can be about whatever you want it to be about as long as it’s parenting or family related.  During the week I’ll come round this week and Pin them all to the Parenting Pin It Party Pinterest board which you can follow here.  Please try and visit at least two of the other posts and let them know that you’re visiting from the Parenting Pin It Party.

Oh and you don’t have to but it would be great if you could include the badge in your post ;-)

The Diary of a Frugal Family

 

 
The Parenting Pin it Party is co-hosted each week by myself, Romanian MumKiddy ChartsMum of OneMamasaurusAll you need is love and cake and The Fairy and the Frog.



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My favourite way to spend a Sunday afternoon – Movies and homemade popcorn….

I love Sunday afternoons lazing on the settee with a bowl of homemade popcorn watching a film with the kids – even more so now that they’re a little bit older and want to watch films that I actually have a chance of enjoying with them!

Homemade popcorn tastes much nicer than the shop bought bags of it and you don’t need anything special to make it with other than a pan with a lid.  I did consider buying a popcorn maker at one point as they’re not overly expensive and I imagine that they make the process even easier but to be fair, it’s not difficult anyway so there’s no point going out and spending money on something that for the most part would just end up sitting on a shelf taking up space!

 The popcorn packet will usually have the instructions for popping your popcorn but I basically heat about two tablespoons of sunflower oil in a large pan and when I think it’s hot, I add a couple of kernels of corn and pop the lid on.  When they pop, I take the pan off the heat and add in the rest of my popcorn, leaving it off the heat for about 30 seconds.  I give the pan a good shake and then pop the lid back on and put it back on the heat.  I then wait for the popcorn to start popping which doesn’t take long at all and then as soon as the popping slows to 2 seconds or more between pops, I take it off the heat.

Today’s popcorn was a mish mash of all sorts – mini marshmallows, mini eggs, rainbow drops and some hot chocolate powder sprinkled on and it was delicious!

popcorn photo

fun popcorn

Our popcorn today used up little bits of things we already had in but we do have lots of other ideas for popcorn flavourings….

popcorn toppings

Plain old salted is really easy if you just add salt to the oil before you pop the popcorn.  This means it will be evenly(ish) distributed on the popcorn as it cooks.  You can sprinkle a little on the finished popcorn too.

You could add some pepper to your salted popcorn above just before serving to make salt and pepper popcorn.  

Sweet popcorn is tastiest when it’s made by sprinkling a little icing sugar on the warm popcorn.

Sprinkle on a handful (or several) of chocolate buttons or grated chocolate when the popcorn is still hot in the pan – messy but delicious!

Cinnamon Sugar – melt 2tbsp butter and coat as much of the popcorn as you can.  Then sprinkle over a mix made up of 3 teaspoons of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of cinammon.

We usually have some Nandos salt in the cupboard which is made with salt and paprika I believe and it tastes amazing sprinkled on popcorn.  Most people will probably have some sort of seasoning in their cupboard – I have cajun and something called cowboy spice that I bought reduced to 15p that I haven’t been brave enough to use yet!

Grated parmesan cheese and black pepper sprinkled in makes a very grown up and very delicious popcorn.

Another savoury favourite of ours is spicy paprika.  You just sprinkle your popcorn with a mix of paprika and chilli powder – exact quantities depend on how spicy you like it but I usually use around double the amount of paprika to the amount of chilli powder.

I use the Rachel Allan recipe for toffee popcorn and it’s delicious although it can be a bit faffy to make so I only make this one as a special treat.

And if I want a really special treat, I’ll make chocolate popcorn using this recipe over on Plus 2.4.

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Our move of choice today was Walking with Dinosaurs which the men in the house have been dying to see and were very excited when I opened the post yesterday to find that the lovely people from Fox had sent it to us to review.

I’m not going to ruin the film by telling you too much about it but basically it follows a cute little dinosaur called Patchi as he grows from being the runt of the little into a fully grown dinosaur with lots of adventures in between.

The graphics are amazing and the story is told in a funny way that had us all laughing and I can safely say that all of us absolutely loved the film.  It was much better than I was expecting and I’m sure we’ll watch it more than once over the next couple of weeks.

1 film

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The results of my handwriting analysis….

Remember a few weeks ago when I shared my love of post-it notes with you?

Well one of the notes was sent away to a handwriting analyst for them to analyse what my handwriting would tell them about me.

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If I’m honest, I half expected it would come back with something along the lines of me being lonely and desperate seeing as I was trying to use the promise of popcorn to bribe my 11 year old to watch a film with me but actually, it’s much more in-depth than that.

“You try hard to be a dependable person, and when you give your word you will try to stick to it. Whether at home or at work, you may be rather quiet and serious but you are always trying to persevere. You are interested in thoroughness, in practical procedures and will try to communicate a message of reliability. You will make every effort to ensure resources are delivered when and where they are supposed to be, as ’duty’ is a word you want to comply with.

You take delight in festive occasions held in the context of rituals such as holidays and birthdays.”

Adam Brand, Post-it® Graphologist

I’m quite impressed by that!

What do you think your handwriting would say about you?

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