Monday to Friday meal plan – 15 October 2012

I feel like we’re doing really well with meal planning so far. We had a little blip last Friday night and we ate out rather than in so we actually ate out/had takeaway two nights last week instead of just one, but the rules are made to be broken, right?! :-)

Here’s this week’s meal plan!

Monday to Friday meal plan
Monday – YOYO – you’re on your own! Lee is having pie and I’m having Fish finger sandwiches
Tuesday – Tacos (I’ve never made tacos before…so we’ll give this a whirl)
Wednesday – YOYO – I usually wouldn’t have two in one week to economise, but I am in London so Lee needs to fend for himself!
Thursday – Chicken casserole (not sure what sauce it is, there’s one in the cupboard which needs eating up!)
Friday – Sausage and mash (one of Lee’s favourite ever meals, like ever)

Can anyone inspire me with a new recipe for next week that we can try?! Preferably chicken based?!

Ax

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One big cover up!

Foundations. A good foundation is hard to come by, right? If you’re a woman that wears make up (or a man?) regularly, you’ll understand how hard it is to find the perfect foundation. Some are too dry, some are too oily, some make your skin look shiny, some are far too heavy, or the wrong colour etc, etc, etc.

Pasty and pale
I have a very pale complexion. In fact I’m probably paler than pale. If it wasn’t for my rosey red cheeks then I’d blend into most white walls. :-)

I don’t even tan. I can sit out in the sun (with sufficient sunscreen I might add) on holiday for a couple of hours and still all that happens is that I go red and then back to white. Lee on the other hand, just has to go look at the sun and he has a nice healthy sun-kissed glow. Not that I’m jealous or anything. :-) I’ve actually come to accept my fairer than fair complexion over the years. So much so, that even for my wedding I decided against faking it (although that was partly because my work colleague said I’d look like an Oompa Loompa).

One big cover-up
Because I’m so pale I’ve always, always struggled with finding a foundation to match my natural skin tone. I dread to think how much money I’ve spent over the years on foundation, tinted moisturisers and more recently, BB cream. Here’s a selection of the foundations and tinted moisturisers I’ve tried over the years.

From left to right…

So, what is the perfect foundation for me?
Well, I don’t think there is one. :-(

However, my latest purchase thanks to a recommendation from Rebecca Norris over at Florence Finds, was Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser. I was dubious at first, but I decided to give it a go…and I love it. It’s lightweight, but gives enough coverage to even out my skin tone. You also don’t need a lot of it, so the tube does last a long time!

The two things I don’t like about it are firstly the hefty price tag (at around £30 a go, it’s not exactly a bargain), and secondly if you don’t hold it upright (which is fairly impossible because it’s meant to stand on it’s head as per the picture above), it does tend to leak out a bit, which is slightly wasteful if you ask me.

However, I have and will be recommending this to my friends and family as THE tinted moisturiser to have. :-)

Do you use Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser? Have you used it in the past and found something better? Do share!

Ax

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Posted in Beauty

Monday to Friday meal plan

Following on from my previous post on meal planning, I want to make this a weekly feature on my blog to encourage myself to stick to it! My bestie has also been checking up on me to make sure I’m meal planning too, so I have had lots of encouragement from people. :-) Thankfully, it is going really well!

So, without further ado, here’s our list for this week!

Monday to Friday meal plan
Monday – Fajitas (I tend to cheat and use a stir fry mix rather than chopping peppers and onions – I was not made to chop)
Tuesday – Pasta bolognese (I don’t do spaghetti, so we always tend to have pasta with this dish)
Wednesday – Ham and cheese omlette with stir fry on the side (it was BOGOFF on the stir fry, go figure)
Thursday – Sausage casserole
Friday – naughty day :-) (we’re planning on a treat night tonight)

As I mentioned last week, we aren’t planning weekend meals at the moment. This did do us a bit of a disadvantage if I’m honest because we did eat out once or twice more than I wanted to, but at the end of the month we’ll review the account and make sure we’re within our budget and if we’re not then we’ll deal with it then. One step at a time, right?

So, if you meal plan, please do share what’s on the menu for this week! I’d love to share ideas? :-)

Ax

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Bell’s Palsy – week 3

This is my third update on Bell’s Palsy. You can read the first post here, and then update 1 and update 2.

Last week was a bad week. It all started going fairly down hill on Wednesday afternoon when I went for my check-up with ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) at the hospital. I expected a simple “there’s nothing we can do apart from wait” and “it’s only been 2 and a half weeks” speech from the consultant, but alas it couldn’t have been further away from the simple appointment I was expecting.

Cutting a long story short, 45 minutes in the room and numerous questions later, I was being asked to go for an urgent MRI scan the following morning (Thursday) at 9:00am at the hospital and to expect a letter for a further appointment on Tuesday (the next time the lead consultant is on duty). It turns out that they think it might be something more….serious, shall we say? Not Bell’s Palsy at all!

Needless to say I was fairly terrified after this appointment, particularly because my face was still sore from the abscess and that there had been absolutely NO improvement still in the facial paralysis.

I had a long talk with my bosses as they were in my office on Thursday afternoon and they have kindly given me a few days off work to rest and relax too.

I’m hoping that everything will be just fine when I go for my follow-up appointment tomorrow, and that I do have Bell’s Palsy and that it is nothing more serious. All to be revealed tomorrow I guess…

Symptoms, improvement and recovery
Since my hospital appointments last week, I am pleased to report that I have noticed some improvement in my facial paralysis! :-)

I can’t tell you how happy this makes me. I can now raise the corner of my mouth (on the left) and lift my eyebrow significantly on that side too. My eye still won’t fully close but it is getting noticeably better when I do try to shut it. When I blink normally, nothing happens still but I would imagine it’s going to take some time for my blink reflex to come back properly (if it ever does).

I will provide another update tomorrow after my hospital appointment to get the results of the further tests I had at the end of last week. So if you’re reading this, keep everything crossed for me!

Ax

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Meal planning: success or failure?

Meal planning. I like it. :-)

Is it making my life simpler? Yes. Is it making me stress less about what the hell we’re going to eat? Yes. And the less stress I have right now, the better (long story, for another time).

I would consider this week a success so far. So, here’s a run down of my week…I actually feel like I should have taken pictures of the meals I’ve made just to prove to myself that I can cook and that actually, I don’t mind cooking when I know what we’re having?! I know what you’re thinking, this is a complete contradiction to what I said in my last post about cooking, but seriously…meal planning may change my life!

Monday to Friday meal plan
Monday – beans surprise (fancy version of beans on toast. It has ham and cheese)
Tuesday – garlic chicken with wedges and cauliflower cheese (didn’t think this would work with cauliflower cheese but it was actually quite yummy)
Wednesday – chilli (one of my favourite dishes ever, but Lee complains we have it too much)
Thursday – pork chops with mustard mash (this was really nice, and we don’t have pork that often)
Friday – naughty day :-) (we’re planning on a treat night tonight)

We haven’t planned Saturday and Sunday yet because we don’t know what we’re up to at the weekend. However, I’m adamant that if we’re not going anywhere I’m going to go to the shop and buy something for tea, or we’ll eat pasta or something we have in the cupboard.

I’ve also been very good and taken my lunch to work this week which is something I don’t often do. Seriously, spending £3-£4 each day really adds up so it will save a lot in the long-run.

Planning for next week
Lee and I discussed what we’re going to do next week and when we’re going to plan and when we’re going to go shopping. We haven’t quite decided yet but because we both work we have decided that we need to shop for the following week on the weekend not on the Monday – otherwise we don’t have enough in for lunches…and from experience, if I don’t start as I mean to go on on a Monday, then that doesn’t bode well for the rest of the week.

I’ll post our meal plan for next week once we’ve agreed it on Saturday or Sunday!

Ax

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Bell’s Palsy – week 2

So, here I am. Week 2 with Bell’s Palsy.

Somehow, I have a feeling that these updates might be come the weekly feature that I wanted. However, this isn’t exactly the kind of feature I was hoping for…but maybe it will give me time to come up with something a bit more entertaining?!

Symptoms, improvement and recovery
Symptoms are pretty much the same. :-( I don’t mean to sound like a broken record, but there’s really not much to report.

The two things that have changed are:

  • My eye/blink reflex has improved slightly. I can now close my eye half way when I really concentrate. Trust me, this greatly excited me when I realised.
  • I developed an abscess. :-( The pain in my cheek that I described last week wasn’t symptomatic of the Bell’s Palsy, but is a nasty abscess. So I had yet another trip to the doctor at the end of last week and yet another round of tablets prescribed.

When I went to the doctor, they have said that I could be looking at 3 months for full recovery. So I had a little cry in my car, and then I got over it. I am becoming a bit of a recluse though. Maybe my challenge for this next week should be to get out a bit more?!

Ax

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Meal planning

For the past week or so (basically since I started panicking about how much our new mortgage was going to be), I’ve decided that Lee and I need to be much more organised when it comes to meal times.

I envy those people who are super organised and know exactly what they are going to make for dinner each night. Because it’s just to the two of us, we’re very quick to just drop everything and go out for dinner or order a takeaway if we don’t have anything in. I could list off a million and one excuses, but the fact is that we’re both just disorganised a bit lazy when it comes to cooking. There I said it. I am a woman and I hate cooking. :-(

Can’t Cook, Won’t Cook
I’ve always said I should be the face of the classic game show Can’t Cook, Won’t Cook – I think it’s because I’m not very inspired when it comes to the kitchen. I’m not a massive advocate of change in any element of my life so if I cook we tend to have the same meals over and over and over again.

Everything I’ve read suggests that the household should aim for 10-15 staple meals. I’m lucky if I can pick 6 or 7?!

The thing is, Lee and I are getting bored of what we eat (which doesn’t help at all with the whole takeaway/eating out situation). It’s the same thing day in and day out, but at the same time I don’t want to spend 15 hours in the kitchen every night preparing a meal.

Bigger house + bigger mortgage = no money
The maths is simple to me. We’re moving from a 3 bed mews to a 4 bed detached. Our mortgage for is going to be substantially more than what we’re paying now, so we have both agreed to look at ways in which we can reduce household bills. I’ll talk more about this another time, but one thing is crystal clear to me – we simply can’t afford to be eating out all the time or getting takeaways and we need to be much more organised when it comes to planning meals.

Meal planning challenge
With all that said, I’m challenging myself to take on meal planning and make it a success. :-) (That’s more a smile of terror than “yeah, bring it on!”)

I’ve read a lot of other blogs on the basics of meal planning and I’m going to use a combination of ideas that I’ve found to try and make it work for Lee and I.

So this afternoon Lee and I are going to sit down and plan meals for the week. Watch this space. I’m going to use the blog as a way to record what we’re doing and hopefully it will keep me on track as well! So what would be really helpful is if anybody actually does read this thing…if you could, you know…yell at me if I don’t post my meal plans each week?

More to follow later when Lee and I know what we’re doing.

Ax

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