Celebrating The Small Things:Week Thirteen

Writing these posts has certainly brought me to the realisation that my plans of being more organised this year have not been going to well as I am a fair few weeks behind with these posts!

I have however been good at noting down all my special moments and hope to get caught up very soon as I currently stuck in Easter!

Easter Egg Competition – Normally Frankie isn’t overly into crafts and it has to be something he is really interested in to keep him engaged, so it was lovely to see such enthusiasm when preparing his ‘Eggtopus’ for the school Easter competition.
He sadly wasn’t a winner this year but he had an amazing time taking part.

Family Fun At The Seaside – This year Izzy’s birthday fell on our trip to Dreamland for the Big Fish Little fish event which was an amazing day but a real highlight for me was watching the children’s excitement looking for shells and crabs in the rock pools is one of life’s simple pleasures that you can’t beat.

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New Experiences For Me – As I get older my want and need to discover and enjoy new things has been growing immensely and I love any opportunity to try something different.
Over the past few years the blog has certainly made this possible and the other week I got the chance to made very own Dolly Mixtures which is something I’m not sure I would ever have done if it wasn’t for my work.

Sweets Galore For Barratt’s 170th Birthday

My hands firmly clasped around a small, white ruffled paper bag full of my favourite sweets that had taken so much time and deliberation to choose is one of my fondest memories of our family holidays to Devon as a child.

My sister and I would be taken to the local sweet shop to pick our goodies for the long journey ahead where we would enjoy singing along in car whilst sucking on sour sherbet lemons, winding lengths of liqurique round our fingers and more often then not get in trouble for covering ourselves and the car in sherbet from our favourite Sherbet Fountains.

To so many people sweets are a huge part of their childhood memories and one taste can see them transported back to a special time and place that creates such a warm feeling of nostalgia.

I know this is very true to me and something my own parents have talked about over the years, fondly recalling sweets that are no longer available and the stories that come along with them.

The other week I was lucky enough to attend a golden ticket event hosted by Barratt – the brand behind so many of our much loved and fondly remembered sweets. Barratt have been out of the lime light for the past few years but have made a very welcome return with their patented classics such as Black Jacks and Fruit Salads and some great new products that I’m sure will have the power to conger up those same memories in my own children.

After a sweet themed cocktail…or two! we were given the opportunity to make our very own Dolly Mixtures with the help of a expert in this field who was probably shuddering at our feeble attempts.

With the help of the gorgeous Rosie from Mummy and Boo we managed to create a pretty good raspberry flavoured Dolly Mixture with a lovely pretty marbled effect; and for someone who isn’t a big fan of Dolly Mixtures I have to say our efforts weren’t to bad at all.

After all our hard work we settled down to a talk from the very knowledgeable food historian – Seren Charrington-hollins. I was astounded at how long ago the love affair with all things sweet started and was very surprised to how that chewing gum was intact founded in Greece, I would definitely have had my money on America for that one.

Below I have left some more information of the fascinating history of sweets and I hope this has all got you thinking about your childhood favourites as I would love to hear your stories.

*collaborated post

Candy Cane Bark Gifts For Teachers

I always like to make something for the children’s teachers at the end of term as the children can then get involved with the whole process and feel really proud when they hand it over to their teacher.

This Christmas we have made some yummy candy cane bark which is so easy to do.
Candy Cane Bark

  • 800g white chocolate
  • Box of 12 candy canes
  • 2tsp peppermint flavouring

  1. In a bowl bash the candy canes until broken into small pieces.
  2. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water.
  3. Add the broken candy canes and peppermint flavouring to the chocolate and mix well.
  4. Pour the mixture into a shallow baking tray lined with greasproof paper and place in the fridge for around 30/40 mins.
  5. Once hardened break into random pieces.


  
I took some cellophane and placed the bark into the centre and gathered at the top with some Christmas ribbon and attached a gift tag.


What do you normally but for your children’s teachers at the end of term?

Allergy Free Chocolate Plops

  

With Fathers Day celebrations happening this weekend I knew there would be lots of treats flying around that number four would not be able to join in with; so whilst the older children made chocolate muffins for their Dad we set to making some super easy chocolate plops.

All that is need is a large bar of dairy free chocolate and some cake decoration sprinkles.  There are lots available so you can be as creative as you like with your decoration.

Firstly get a chopping board that will be able to lay flat in your fridge and cover with a layer a cling film.

Then melt your chocolate in a bowl I’ve some boiling water, take a teaspoon and put a 5cm drop of chocolate onto your covered board.  Then add your sprinkles to each plop.

     
 

One all the chocolate has been used up place them into the fridge to set.  This takes about 10mins depending on the thickness of the plops.

Whilst they were hardening number four enjoyed licking the bowl!!

   
   

When they were ready we easily removed them from the board and placed them in a box to be taken out as and when we wanted.

  

  

  

Chocolate Chip Muffins And Sweetie Jars For Daddy

  
The way to a mans heart, especially my husband’s is through his stomach. So what better Father’s Day present than lots of yummy food!

First up we made some scrummy white chocolate chip muffins.  Here’s how:

  • 140g Self Raising Flour
  • 140g Melted Dark Chocolate
  • 75g Cocoa Powder
  • 3tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 Egg
  • 200ml Milk
  • 150g Broken White Chocolate
  • 1tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 100ml Sunflower Oil

Preheat the oven to 200c/Gas Mark 6.

  
Mix together the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder.

In a separate bowl mix together the oil, milk, egg and melted chocolate.

   
 

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together the the white chocolate chunks.  Do not over mix the mixture.

Place into 12 muffin cases and bake for 12 mins.

   
 

Once cooked, remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

  
Once they were cooled I placed them into an air proof tin all ready for tomorrow.

Next up was a very simple pressie.  All I did was get a couple of glass jars with screw top lids.  I filled them with hubby’s favourite sweets whist number three made some gift labels with handprints.

  
I threaded some ribbon through the gift tags and tied them round the top of the jars.

  

The children love making gifts for people and I find that people always find a homemade gift far more thoughtful.

Along with their cards I am sure that is going to be one happy Daddy upon receiving the wonderful gifts.