I have very fond memories of gin.

When I was about eight or nine years old I used to go and stay with my Gran and Grandad in Weymouth. While my Grandad was at work my Gran would pack us a picnic to take to the beach – sandwiches with Marks & Spencers ham, crisps, and a thermos full of gin and tonic. When I was even smaller I can remember sat on my Gran’s lap, the tonic bubbles going up my nose as she tried to get me to have a taste. Years later it was my children sat on her knee and I was the one having to say ‘Gran! You can’t give gin to a baby!’ View Post

It was my birthday yesterday, so to kick start my 40 things before 40 list, I did one straight away!

Pretty good going I thought. It will make up for the fact that the other 39 get done in the last six months before my fortieth.

Normally when my mum asks me what I want for my birthday, I am less than helpful. “Just buy me something exquisite and charming,” I say. She tends to look doubtful. This year though I knew exactly what to say. “I’d like to have lunch in a Michelin star restaurant please,” I said. It sounded a tad on the grabby side, but better than asking for a holiday to Iceland I thought. Plus that way we could have lunch together. Quality Mother and Daughter time and all that.

So yesterday lunchtime we set off to Casamia in Westbury-on-Trym. I put on my best shoes specially and even brushed my hair. It was all very fancy. View Post

Today my very funny and clever daughter Bee is guest posting for me. (I’m not just saying that so she’ll keep making me apricot and almond cookies. Honest). If you enjoy these, try our chocolate and peanut butter cookies.

I am quite good at baking. I also really want people to like me. Luckily the two go hand in hand – as Homer Simpson says, “you don’t make friends with salad”.

As I’m quite new to baking things other than sloppily made fairy cakes, I’m finding I don’t have a lot of the right equipment or ingredients needed for some of the more advanced bakes. I don’t even have a cooling rack, I have to take one of the shelves out of the oven, wait for it to cool down, and then use that.

However, I have found one product that gives great results every time. We were sent a parcel from Whitworth’s that contained all the types of sugar I could think of and more. I was starting to feel like a real baker, with at least 8 different types of sugar in my baking cupboard. View Post

This week Bee has been baking – baking with the One Direction cake toppers that Father Christmas so thoughtfully left in her Christmas stocking.

At the moment she is doing a thing where she is avoiding processed foods as much as possible, so whipping up a batch of small cakes is a really quick and easy way for her to have a tasty treat. Baking is wholesome right?

She used a classic small cake recipe, with 2 eggs, 4 oz of flour, 4 oz of butter and 4 oz of Whitworths soft brown sugar. She used brown sugar she said because she ‘thought it would taste more like chocolate’. (Sweet). She also added her own special surprise ingredient, which will be revealed in her pictures.

Of course a cupcake isn’t a cupcake without lashing of butter cream, so she topped her small cakes with a mix of 200g of Whitworths icing sugar, 110g of butter and a splash of vanilla essence. And then of course her 1D caketoppers.

Cupcakes for a cuppycake.

"One Direction cupcakes"

"One Direction cupcakes"

"One Direction cupcakes"



I’ve always been a massive fan of YeoValley, and not just because the let me drive a tractor. I just think there are some companies that are Nice and Proper, you know what I mean? They make you feel good about buying and eating their products, and I never even minded getting stuck behind their lorries on my old Bridgwater to Bath commute.

Yeo Valley is launching a new Limited Edition yogurt, with a delicious and zingy 0% Fat Lemon and Poppy Seed flavour and thanks to me (tada!), you could win some. In fact, you could win more than just yogurt… View Post


I don’t really need to say anything more than that do I?

This is a chocolate hamper with a bit of a difference though, so while you’re stuffing your face you can feel a bit virtuous too. This chocolate hamper has been very kindly donated by RunNative, an online marketplace for UK social enterprises. Gifts bought from RunNative have a direct impact on communities and lives.

This chocolate hamper is from Chocolate Memories, an emerging social firm, established in 2010 by charity group Autism Initiatives. Based in County Down, Northern Ireland, the business offers training opportunities to people with Autism Spectrum Condition. The team at Chocolate Memories blend the finest quality chocolate with delicious flavour combinations, creating an unforgettable taste experience. All profits are reinvested back into the business to fulfil the social aims and objectives.

Enough about that though. To the chocolate!

This is what’s up for grabs – the large luxury hamper, which includes a selection of products from the Chocolate Memories range presented in a beautiful basket. (Not necessarily the products shown, but they will choose you a good range.)

"Chocolate hamper"


There are a few different ways to enter. Each will count as one entry, so the more you do, the more chances you have to win/get fat!

  • Leave a comment on this post telling me what your favourite chocolate treat is
  • Go and like me on Facebook and leave a comment there saying hello
  • Follow me on Twitter and tweet the following – “#Win a chocolate hamper with @mummyblogger http://ht.ly/hBQyk”
  • Sign up to receive new posts by email. (You’re free to unsubscribe at any time if you get bored. I won’t give you a Chinese burn or anything).

The competition will close on 28th February and you can read the full T&Cs here.

Good luck!
As featured on ThePrizeFinder – UK Competitions