Monday Musings- Dunkirk, Planners & Toasters

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Howdy Y’all

Happy Monday, how was your weekend? Ours was relaxed. Mr. L and I went on a date night!!! The first in too long, what did we do when it is a million degrees outside? We went to the movies to see Dunkirk. It was such an important movie because it keeps the story of those horrific events alive. The sacrifice a generation went through to give us the daily freedoms that we take for granted, should be a message we never forget. The events they experienced are unimaginable. I sometimes feel that those of us luckiest enough not be living in a war torn area can be almost immune to the atrocities of war, with the 24-hour news cycles, headlines can seem diluted and loose their impact. A generation of whom the vast majority were little more than children, who had the sense of respect, pride, and patriotism to represent their country. Many of whom probably had little idea the cause in which they were fighting. Little did they know that their sacrifices would be far reaching. It would allow my life because if the alternative had happened and the Allies had lost the war the likelihood of my life would have been uncertain, as my father has a disability and that is something wholly unwelcome in the oppositions version of the perfect world. So I am eternally grateful and will never let any losses be in vain. I shall make sure that Little L is aware of their sacrifice. I was staggered after the movie in the bathroom when a group of young ladies giggled away at how they didn’t get the film and how cute Harry Style looked. All perfectly normal girly chatter but their lack of understanding blew me away and the disrespect they showed disappointed me. I left the bathroom with the impression that they were unaware these events were real?! The message of the movie got me thinking about the parallels with the world today, particularly at the moment with the horrendous terrorist attacks in Barcelona and Finland plus the racial attacks happening in the US. Do we learn nothing from history? Is history a little like fashion? A regurgitation with little differences of what came before? Do we learn nothing because we are flawed individuals? Or that after a generation we forget the lessons and messages of what went before? I for one do not have the answers to these highly complex questions and issues, but I ponder them this weekend. I always maintain that the world will never be perfect after all nobody or nothing is. If we could all be a little kinder, more tolerant, more accepting wouldn’t the life we lead be a bit better? I do sometimes consider when did a person opinion become more important than the feelings and considerations of others.
I must share with y’all that today I bought my new wall planner for 2018; it took me a slow minute to realize I will have to order my new planner soon and that before I blink the winter months and then the Holiday season will be upon us. I don’t know about you but the last few months of the year seem to move the fastest, I am not sure if that is the shorter days or maybe they are busier, who knows, but they fly. We had our first full week of school last week, and Little L is now going four days, I will share with you that it was more difficult because I missed her little sassiness about the place (for about five mins.) Honestly, she is ready for more school, she has a new class, classroom and after a shaky start a great new teacher. I did notice her being a little more tired than normal so we shall see, if you have followed me a while you will know that Little L is allergic to sleep, far too afraid of missing out. We have Wednesdays together which is going to be sacred, this week we have a ballet trial lesson, although she has done ballet before this is in a professional dance school. I will add that Darcey Bussell she is not, but she wanted to continue. I think the trial is as much for them, like us, will she take quiet instruction and think elegance (pray for me!)
I also realized this weekend how much my life has changed; I got excited because we ordered a toaster. Yes before you scoff and decide to unsubscribe we have always used British appliances with the aid of a cumbersome transformer, Mr. L promised me that we could replace said items once we bought a house and he is true to his word. As you can image TLL was particular about the color and style of the said toaster, and so the one I desired was not cheap. I can tell you that a toaster is a useful little appliance and when you are not using one you miss it (Champagne problems I am aware.) I got a 20% off coupon and bite the bullet, this machine is beautiful, and I am genuinely excited. I will post a pic on Instagram (do you follow me there?) as soon as it arrives.
My weekend was fairly quiet and relaxed which was super lovely; I can not tell you the security owning a home has brought us, it has delivered more control to our lives regardless of where Mr. L’s job may lead us next. Did you see on Facebook or Instagram this weekend the Play doh pic of my fashion designing hubs? I was very impressed. If you are not on those scroll to the bottom of my blog and you will see the latest pictures from my Instagram. I have some fun things coming up on TLL in the next few weeks. I do have some videos that I meant to post before I moved, I filmed them an age ago, are y’all ok if I share now? Otherwise, I could re-film, I shall see.

How is your week ahead looking? Anything exciting planned? Keep in touch I love to hear from you.

Ta Ta for now.

Kx

A 15 Point Plan To A Better Week

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Howdy Y’all,

Happy Monday. Trust your weekend was good. Mine was lovely, Friday night was fun we had friends in for dinner and thank goodness my pizza worked. I can not tell how relieved I am, I have tried so many different pizza stones and baking sheets and finally Sur La Table came to my rescue, I see many a happy pizza night in our future. I also tried a new cheesecake recipe, this was not a baked, meaning I used gelatin. I have avoided gelatin like the plague because I have always been under the impression it was impossible to work with, I am pleased to say that is utter rot. I will now be making many a non baked cheesecake because I think they are delicious. Would you like me to share the recipe? Saturday was quiet, we took a trip to the park where Little L fell off the climbing frame and I tell you my heart stopped to see her fall so far, she was a little winded and her pride a little hurt but other than that thankfully she was unscathed. On Saturday night Mr L and I had a date night, we did our usual which involves a movie and dinner. We went to see Gold, which was super, Matthew McConaughey was first class, He really transforms himself. An added bonus is Edgar Ramirez and ladies if you do not know of whom I speak I urge you to google you will not be disappointed. A  movie we both enjoyed, we grabbed dinner afterwards at Blue Fish, goodness I love Sushi so great night all round. Now if you are American and have not been living in a cave you will know that Sunday was Super Bowl day in the USA. More importantly it was being held near the city in which I live giving me all the more reason to go to ground.

Today’s post is to talk about my Sunday routine. On reflection I am wondering if this might be better as a video, if you think so please let me know and I will record myself. I am all for making life as organized as possible, I like to put in place systems which make my week run smoother. I often find how effective I am on a Sunday reflects how much “me time” I get throughout the week. I had never really thought about it as a routine until last week when I thought I am repeating these things each week, over time I have added more and I have found my weeks have run smoother, I thought I have to share this. Let me preface these don’t have to be done on a Sunday, it could be done in anytime that suits your lifestyle. If I am busy on Sunday I will just make sure I do it on a Saturday.

  1. Put a washing load on first thing. This is usually for items that I do specifically once a week, Little L’s school nap blanket, my shower accessories, bathroom hand towels etc. Honestly all my laundry is usually done by Sunday as I do at least one load a day.
  2. Do my ironing. Sunday is ironing day I usually do it in front of the TV or YouTube. I love to have my laundry pressed and put away for the new week. I iron my bed sheets, I then place them in the correct rooms ready to be changed for the week ahead.
  3. Check and repack my daughters school bag. Self explanatory.
  4. Lay out her uniform ready for Monday morning and polish her school shoes. This makes the Monday morning start much less stressful and we have invested in her shoes so it is important to take care of them and for her to see me doing so because one day she will be doing it. Have I ever mentioned how much I love a uniform?
  5. Get my dry cleaning ready. I make sure the items are in the bag ready to leave by the front door.
  6. Check and clean out my car. This is a habit I love to do, I take five minutes to open each door of the car reorganize, empty the trash, give it a dust, check stocks, and empty the boot, which is bound to have some drink or cleaning items I had purchased but not placed in the garage. I enjoy doing this and I like my car to look clean and together. I get it cleaned in and out about once a month. It also reminds me to put more credit on my Starbucks card if necessary! Priorities!!
  7. Clean round my washing machine and empty the dryer lint tray. Very self explanatory.
  8. Meal Plan, I love to meal plan mainly because I hate getting to the store and thinking what shall I cook? I have an exercise book where I write my list, this has proved useful when I am in store and not sure if I have purchased something in an earlier week. I also add to the book throughout the week as items need replacing.
  9. Clean out my fridge. This is less regimented now since I have recently taken possession of a new fridge/freezer in my garage which has meant fridge real estate is at less of a premium, never the less this is a great habit to get into. There is nothing worse than a rotting avocado at the back of the fridge.
  10. Sit and arrange my planner, I take five minutes to look at appointments, enter any important information for myself or my family, enter my meals for the week and try to schedule gym time and blogging. I can also check any impending important dates that I might need to order or arrange gifts/cards for.
  11. Delete emails and check admin items. I have a confession I am very bad at deleting junk email, I let it fester. I have added this to my routine to ensure I keep on top of it. I also deal with any returns I may have, get them ready for the post office. I file any coupons I might want or need to use. I clean my electronics with a cleaning wipe, they get filthy especially with toddler fingers.
  12. Clean out my purse and repack for the week ahead. I remember a woman once saying you could tell how organized her life was by the state of her purse, that has stuck with me and I will confess that sometimes on a Friday it can look like a black hole, but I do love taking the time to get rid of receipts and snack wrappers, removing toddler cups and making it look together again. I check it is stocked and ready for those emergencies.
  13. Put a meal in my slow cooker. Often on a Sunday I will cook something in the slow cooker as our meal for Sunday with leftovers for lunch. If I have selected a non slow cooker meal I will make a soup instead. I love to have a home made soup on hand, either for lunches in the week or if a day runs away with me for dinner with toasties.
  14. Tidying and restocking items. I go into each room tidying and restocking, I like to water and feed my plants, restock baby wipes, refill stain remover sprays (trust me we practically drink this stuff I am always spraying rugs or clothes.) I often wiz about refilling coffee pods, the sugar bowl, putting teaspoons near the coffee station anything that will make the mornings run more smoothly. I often try to clean my makeup brushes if time allows!
  15. Bake something either for breakfasts or snack time. This can range from breakfast muffins to natural fruit flapjacks, anything my folks can grab or I can offer if people pop by.

I am aware that this list has made it sound a little laborious, I promise you depending on the size of my ironing pile it never takes more than a couple of hours and saves me so much time in the week ahead. Yes, it may allow me that extra thirty minutes to read a book or nap (no that is total BS I will never get to nap again but a gal can dream!) Do you have a routine? Something that you find makes life run smoother? I am always wanting to perfect it, I am considering adding laying my clothes out the night before and laying the table for breakfast but we shall see. Now I will confess I have weeks where I can not be bothered or we have plans and I don’t get through it all and my weeks don’t run so smooth, so I try really hard to make myself do these things and I confess it gets easier. I often will be doing the routine while wearing a face mask because I love to multi task and I do reward myself on completion with a hot bath and some well deserved me time!

That’s it folk. Enjoy your week.

Ta Ta for now

TLL x

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blue Apron Review

Howdy Y’all,

Happy hump day! So todays post is a review of a new service I have tried last week called Blue Apron. I love to cook, I like trying new recipes and producing home cooked meals, I don’t always enjoy meal planning, list making, shopping etc. I often thought how nice would it be to have a service who took some of the hardwork out of it and voila we have Blue Apron. I had been meaning to try this for a while but with moving etc the time had never been right. When I got my hands on a coupon I thought lets give this a try. Now I am aware that Blue Apron is not the only place that provides this service but from what I have read to date Blue Apron has good feedback. It is a service which sends you in refrigerated boxes with fresh produce to provide meals for your family. You have two basic options 2 meals for 2 covers (2 person plan) or 4 meals for 4 covers (family plan.) I went with the latter because I need leftovers to send with Mr L for his lunch. Blue Apron explain that the meals are farm-fresh, seasonal produce, meat and poultry with no added hormones and sustainably-sourced seafood. So if like my family you are conscious about where your food comes from this is for you. As well as the fresh produce you are provided with extensive recipe cards which guide you in producing each meal.

A Photo Diary Of My Blue Apron Experience

Blue Apron Delivery
Here waiting on my doorstep as described was my first delivery
Blue Apron Box Open
When I opened the box, everything was well packed and very cold from the efficient ice packs provided, these can be reused by you if you want to. I was also impressed with the small brochure with seasonal ideas and the menu cards provided.
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Inside the boxes, you can see how cold the products are kept, which is a deep concern for people like me who live in a warm climate.
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The first meal I prepared was Lemongrass Roasted Pork . This had the thumbs up. Mr L loves pork so I knew it would be a hit.
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Please don’t judge my messy plate, I should have wiped it. But this is a view from above.
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This is Pan-Seared Barramundi with Prince of Orange Potatoes & Spinach. This was also delicious, I perhaps chopped the potatoes a little small, I enjoyed cooking with Barramundi, I love to cook fish but had never cooked this. I love extending my repertoire.
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An overview and the plate is a little cleaner.
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This was the vegetarian option Broccoli & Cheese Enchiladas with Tomatillos & Sour Cream, now a veg dish has to be good to get Mr L’s approval and this did. It was delicious. Plus it got Little L eating lots of veggies.
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These were yummy.
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Seared chicken with brown rice and glazed carrots. This was yummy and the purple carrots were different.

I have Blue Apron delivering this week, mainly because I have been so impressed. The app and website have a great interface, clear and easy to use. The service is first class, every time I have emailed the response has been prompt and effective. I will add, this service is not for someone who has little or no interest in cooking, it does require prep. If you are looking for a prepared meal service this is not for you. If you are a family or couple pushed for time who like wholesome good food and enjoy eating around the table this is for you. If you are in a meal rut and like some insipiration this also may help. The meal cards, provide extensive photographic and written method so if your wanting to improve your cooking this would also help. I really wish they had this service when my husband and I were both working. This would be a great gift idea for new parents or a family or couple on the go. I have been so impressed I intend to keep the service up, I will use in weeks where we have lots going on. If you wish to cancel or miss a week to do so is very easy and straightforward.

If you were thinking of giving this service a try I urge you to do so.
Enjoy the rest of your week.
Ta ta for now
TLLx