Online Dating

I said I was giving up on dating, instead planning on focusing on getting fit, but it’s kind of addictive. I just couldn’t quite delete the apps from my phone. I find myself swiping left about 99% of the time but I’m hopeful that I’ll find my perfect match eventually. I’ve stuck to Match.com and Tinder thus far but I also recently downloaded Bumble and Happn. 

Bumble forces engagement between people because you only get 24 hours to send a message or the connection disappears. The girl also has to make the first move. The approach makes sense as I’ve got quite a few Tinder matches, yet no messages for some of them. 

I’ve subsequently deleted Happn. I can understand the theory of it…if you’re always crossing paths with someone then perhaps you’ve a common interest (at the gym perhaps, or frequent movie goers) but I didn’t like the thought of people seeing where I was and where I’d been.

Fellow singletons, what apps (if any) have you been using? 

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My Weekly Food Shop at Aldi

This week I strayed from my usual supermarket (Sainsbury’s if you’re interested!) to visit Aldi for my food shop. There isn’t an Aldi near my house – it’s a 45 minute round trip to get to one… however it was certainly worth the effort in getting there. I’ve been to Aldi on the odd occasion to pick up a few bits & pieces, but never a full weekly shop.

I’m amazed at the sheer amount I was able to purchase for my typical weekly budget of £80. I chose food for the week plus extras that I wouldn’t normally buy each week to stock up the larder like squeezey garlic and ginger, sugar and dark chocolate for baking, biscuits (shh, don’t tell my PT!) and a few cleaning products too.

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I’ve been doing my best to meal prep, so after my food shop I made a big batch of vegetable and lentil soup for lunches for the week ahead plus a tomato and mozzarella salad, BBQ chicken breasts, chilli roasted vegetables and that lasted me about 4 days. When the kids returned to me from their dads, we had tacos, sausages and pasta for our dinners… and they enjoyed the Scottish shortbread biscuits that I picked up.

Talking of local produce, there was a huge selection of Scottish groceries in store as part of the Aldi ‘Best of Scotland‘ range (300 and counting). From the rapeseed oil to the oatcakes, from the eggs and milk to the pastrami and then not forgetting the raspberry jam and fudge (I promise I didn’t eat it all to myself…!). For my Scottish readers, there is a new Aldi Facebook page which you can check out here.

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I managed to find nearly everything that was on my shopping list at Aldi, which was one of the reasons I haven’t really shopped at Aldi before. However this experience has certainly opened my eyes as I got everything I needed (& more!) apart from cumin seeds (not really essential anyway!). All of the items that we had were of a great quality (the only item we weren’t fond of was the onion hummus), and I’m now into Week 2 and I’ve still got plenty food to keep me going. I’ve just topped up locally with more milk and bread.

Aldi, I will most certainly be back… thanks for having me!

We received vouchers for our food shop, however opinions are my own and are honest.

 

 

 

Recipe – Raspberry Souffle

I was at a Martin Wishart lunch at Kitchens International this summer, and on the menu was the most amazing raspberry souffle. It looked perfect, and yet it seemed super easy to make. I will definitely be recreating it (or at least trying to!) for my first dinner party when I get my new kitchen!

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Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients (serves 8)

  • 8 ramekin dishes
  • 50g butter (softened)
  • 50g sugar

Base:

  • 250g raspberry puree
  • 25g caster sugar
  • 40g cornflour

Souffle:

  • 200g base
  • 280g egg whites
  • 80g sugar
  • 1 lemon

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180 degC
  • Soften the butter. Use a pastry brush to brush a generous amount of butter in an upwards direction around the inside of each ramekin.
  • Once buttered, sprinkle the sugar around the insides of the ramekin. Shaking any excess out.
  • For the souffle base, bring the raspberry puree and sugar to boil in a medium sized pan.
  • Dissolve the cornflour in a mixing bowl with a little water to form a wet paste. Add this to the boiling puree.
  • Cook until the mixture thickens and then leave to cool at one side.
  • For the souffle, whip the egg whites in an electric mixer until white bubbles start to form.
  • Add a squeeze of lemon juice and then gradually add the sugar.
  • Place the raspberry puree base into a mixing bowl. Whisk in one third of the whisked egg white mixture.
  • Gradually fold in the rest of the egg white mixture.
  • Place the mix into the moulds. Smooth over the top of the ramekin.
  • With the tip of your thumb on the inside of the ramekin, and your finger on the outside, run it around the edge of each dish. This will create a perfect rise and also clean the edge of the ramekin.
  • Place in the oven and bake for 5-6 minutes until risen.

Review – Betty Spaghetty dolls

betty

Betty was a must-have toy in the 90s and she’s back… my daughter was delighted to try out one of the Single Doll Packs (RRP £12.99) of which there are 6 different dolls to collect. The bright spaghetti-like hair really appealed to the littlest, who has enjoyed pleating (or at least trying to pleat!) it and adding accessories.

Mix, Match, Style!

It’s the interchangeable body parts that I think are great… much easier for a little girl to swap out a T-shirt or skirt than try to dress a little doll with teeny clothes. The accessories are a little fiddly, but my 5 year old did manage to pop out the arms, add a bracelet or two and stick the doll back together again. Not sure if smaller children would fair so well, but with the tiny parts I don’t think the dolls are designed for pre-school kids anyway.

The arms and legs are bendable, so the dolls can be moved into various positions, and the stand helps them stay upright.

Overall, we think the doll is great fun!

We received a complimentary doll, but opinions are our own and are honest.

 

Life Update

So much has been happening lately that I thought I’d give you all a quick life update!

Forever Home

Things are progressing at our forever home, flooring is starting to be laid in some of the rooms & the curtains are up. It definitely feels good to have some rooms near completion. There is still lots to be done however… I’ll do a separate blog post with some before & after shots soon. The first room to finish will be the ‘grown-up room’ and it should be done by the weekend! I’m having a fireplace installed in my bedroom tomorrow. I can’t wait for chilly autumn weekends when I can snuggle in bed with a book in front of the fire!! Autumn is definitely my favourite season.


Family

The littlest has settled very well into Primary 1. She’s looking so grown up in her uniform. It’s crazy to think she’s not a baby anymore!! My son is now P3 and is as confident as ever. They are great fun to be around.

Relationships

I’ve given up on dating, for just now. I’m on various dating sites but they seem to be full of idiots & I’ve got loads of other things to keep me busy anyway…like my new fitness regimen!

Health & Fitness

I’ve started back with a personal trainer again. I put on a lot of weight recently due to my Crohn’s…a combination of being too ill and tired to exercise followed by steroid treatment making me puffy. I’m determined to get back into my size 10 jeans! I was even meal prepping at the weekend…I feel very motivated just now which is great and I think I’m starting to see results from my hard work. As well as my weekly PT session, I’m trying to make it along to gym classes as well. It’s hard work but it will be worth it.

Work

I’m still working full-time and loving it. Work is very busy and can be stressful at times but I love it. My employer is flexible so I work long days when the kids are with their dad, and shorter ones when they are with me. It works out rather well indeed!

That’s all for now folks…until next time! 

Sarah x