Family

The month of May is national walking month. Walking is something we love to do as a family. It’s free and not only good for our bodies but our minds too. The children love to be outside in nature, and we are lucky where we live to be surrounded by many fabulous local countryside walks, across fields, forests and lakes.

As a family of six; Mummy, Daddy, the girls, Buddy the dog and Mabel the cat, we all have our unique personalities. Each one of us has a favourite type of walk to suit their characteristics. I personally like to walk on the beach, feeling in awe of the wide expanse of open space and sky before me, drawn to the power of the crashing waves. Always one to treasure hunt, I like to stop and pick up shells, wood and sea glass on my travels.

Daddy’s favourite walk is high up in the mountains. One for adventure he loves the challenges of different terrain and the feeling of accomplishment when he reaches the top.

The children’s favourite place to walk is the forest, preferably untouched woodland where there is plenty of adventure to be found. They like climbing up trees and over logs, finding bugs and insects to befriend and listening out for the call of the cuckoo. Racing eagerly ahead, each one wants to lead the search party for outdoor adventures.

As a much loved family member, we always like to take our dog on our family walks on the weekend. His favourite type of adventure is one where he can be let off the lead and run ahead with the girls excitedly chasing after him. Just like the children his happy place is the forest where he can take in all the sights and smells, feeling free to run in and out of the trees as he pleases. With that same appetite for adventure, walking on a lead is a no no and he bounds ahead with childlike enthusiasm in search of adventure. He competes with our youngest to be the leader of the pack, they are both free spirits absorbed in the magic of the forest and not listening when I shout them to come back!

Just as we are keen to make sure everyone gets out and about in the fresh air it’s also important that the family is eating healthy food and that includes the dog! We’ve always opted to feed him premium dog food so when James Wellbeloved asked if we would be interested to try their natural grain free dog food, we agreed. Although Buddy doesn’t have any food intolerances that we know of, we are very aware that processed food with artificial flavouring is no good for us and it’s no good for our pets either.

So we were pleased to see that James Wellbeloved believe in simple natural ingredients. Each recipe contains top quality natural ingredients (everyone is also listed on the pack so you know what goes into the food) and nothing else. Naturally hypoallergenic it minimises adverse reactions to the food and proves popular with dogs and cats with food sensitivities. It promises firmer poos (pet owners rejoice!) and numerous health benefits from glossy coats to boosted immune systems to keep them adventuring with you for years to come.

The taste test received a resounding yes as Buddy wolfed down his food to which we had added the lamb with vegetables in gravy as a topper (which James Wellbeloved recommend as an alternative option to a standalone meal). I think he’d be a very happy pup if we added these to his dry food more often. He gets extremely excited on Sundays when the family is having a roast and he knows he will be getting some leftovers and gravy. In fact it’s his favourite thing to come home to after a long walk in the woods!

This post is in conjunction with James Wellbeloved but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

 


This time of year brings with it the promise of warmer weather, days spent outside, family lunches and pretty spring flowers. Just the thought of it fills me with hope and positivity. By March I am usually well and truly over the cold weather and dark days.

Easter marks the start of my favourite time of year, when we get to be outside, enjoying our beautiful English countryside and our lovely garden.

We have a few traditions that we like to do as a family on Easter Sunday to celebrate together.

Our Sunday always starts with Easter breakfast in bed together as a family of four. We’ve a lovely super king bed which fits us all in perfectly for morning snuggles, chats and breakfast time. Breakfast in bed is a treat we always do on special occasions, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Birthdays and Easter Sunday. We also like to have the occasional lazy Sunday if the little people in our lives are not demanding we go downstairs!

Sometimes our breakfast in bed is just tea and toast, sometimes pastries and coffee. I do always try and make Easter Breakfast a little bit special though.

A few little touches when dressing the tray can elevate a normal breakfast to a thing of beauty! Think butlers tray, gorgeous kitchen accessories, a pretty cup and saucer, flowers… and I personally LOVE the touch these jute placemats bring. For Easter you can find some gorgeous egg cups and the prettiest eggs in pastel shades to add.

Now on to the food! One of my favourite quick and easy but divine breakfast recipes is for Smoked Salmon & Scrambled Egg Breakfast Pastries. Made with smoked salmon, scrambled eggs, a dash of creme fraiche, puff pastry and a good amount of black pepper they are a quick and easy recipe to follow but make an absolute delicious Easter Breakfast treat.

Smoked Salmon & Scrambled Egg Breakfast Pastries

You will need:

  • Pre rolled puff pastry cut in to equal squares of about 15cms (Determine how many squares you need on the number of people eating. They are quite filling and I don’t think you’d manage more than 2 per person!)
  • Smoked salmon slices
  • Eggs (to make up scrambled egg)
  • Creme fraiche or milk to add to scrambled eggs
  • Butter (optional for scrambled egg)
  • Black pepper and salt to season

To make your pastries:

  • Combine your eggs, milk, butter and salt and pepper together to make scrambled eggs. The amount will differ depending on how many pastries you are making but usually one egg = one pastry. Don’t worry about the scrambled egg being totally cooked as it will cook some more in the oven later too.
  • Lay out your pastry squares on a baking tray (with greaseproof paper underneath so they don’t stick) and fill the centre with scrambled egg. Add two small slices of smoked salmon and parcel up, making sure the points overlap and are stuck together in the centre.
  • You can brush the top with a glaze of egg if you’d like to but it isn’t necessary.
  • Cook until pastry is golden brown.
  • Serve with a helping of black pepper and enjoy!

Why not add your own twist?

If you wanted to add a twist to the recipe you could add some spinach too, or go for good old fashioned bacon, egg and mushrooms.

I will be making these on Easter Sunday as well as some mini easter bunny pain au chocolates for my girls! (using pre bought croissant dough, a rabbit cookie cutter and dark chocolate drops for the centre).

We will be off to church after our Easter breakfast and joining the rest of the clan for a big Easter lunch and egg hunt around the garden later in the day. I’m really hoping that snow they’ve warned us about decides to give us a break and we get some well deserved sunshine! What about you? How will you be spending your Easter Sunday? Do you have any traditions you like to do every year?

Disclaimer: I was sent some beautiful kitchen accessories by The White Company in order to create this post. Thank you to The White Company for supporting Lish Concept, we are big fans!

I woke up one morning last year and had this crazy idea that it was time I went back to work full time. As many of you will know I’m mum to two little girls and one rather large clumsy Labrador who goes by the name of Buddy.

I’m not going to sugar coat it, being a full-time working mum of small children (and big dogs) is hard work.

Life is one giant to do list.

For life to run smoothly, military precision is required. Despite my best drill sergeant attempts, I have the distinct feeling my tiny army (captain silly, cadet chaos and deputy dog) are mocking me.

100mph lives

A snapshot of our morning would reveal one naked toddler (Chaos Cadet) streaking through the hallway refusing to wear anything but a hat. Her sister (Captain Silly) is chasing after her whooping with loud, crazy laughter. I’m hollering at them to brush their teeth while frantically trying to break the Guinness world record for fast (yet neat) eyeliner application. Dad is on sandwich duty downstairs (a lucky escape from the madness if you ask me) while Buddy (deputy dog) plays a hilarious comedy soundtrack (think Benny Hill theme tune) with his paws on the giant piano which is stretched out across the hallway.

Welcome to our 100mph lives. We don’t do slow, or calm very well but we’ve got messy and crazy down to a tee. There is always a job or ten that needs to be done, somewhere we need to be (10 minutes ago), a little person shouting for “more BAPES (grapes)” or a dog barking to go outside and chase a pigeon. It’s noisy, fast paced, full and fun and well, it’s just us.

Despite this, the health and wellbeing of our family (whether they have 2 feet or 4 paws) is always number one. A balanced diet and good hygiene are never compromised even when we are racing against the clock. Everyone needs to have had a healthy breakfast and brushed their teeth properly before the day can start.

Keeping our dog’s teeth healthy with Dentastix

This includes our family Labrador Buddy. His bowl gets filled every morning as we dish out our breakfast. And although we don’t brush his teeth every morning (I wouldn’t even dare to attempt it!) we do use Pedigree Dentastix as part of Buddy’s daily dog dental care.

Luckily Buddy sees these very much as a treat so never has a problem with brushing his teeth unlike our youngest who is a nightmare.

Look at the excitement on his little face!

 

Packed with yummy meaty flavours the DentaStixs are cleverly designed to be chewed for long enough to be effective, with a gently abrasive texture and active ingredients that help to reduce the build-up of plaque and tartar and  lower the risk of gum disease.

Just as we brush our teeth every day, our dogs should be chomping Dentastix daily to help maintain healthy teeth and gums which is absolutely essential for them. Many dogs over the age of 3 years suffer from gum disease, which can actually slow them down and even lead to costly treatment at the vets.

With two little people and one furry baby to keep healthy and happy, a list of chores as long as my arm, work projects and social engagements to juggle, anything, ANYTHING that can make my life a little easier is a big win with me.

I’m just waiting for them to invent dentastix for kids!

This post is in collaboration with Pedigree, but all thoughts are my own. For additional dental care information you can read the following Pedigree Reviews article for tips and advice.

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