Tuesday, 30 April 2013

ChokaBlok Ice Cream Sticks {Review}

Recently I discovered ChokaBlok's hot chocolate big dippers and tweeted saying how much I enjoyed them.

When I was asked if I'd like to review their ice cream sticks I could hardly refuse!

ChokaBlok promise "a little bit of magic" - and they certainly don't disappoint.

In order to compile a fair review, to begin with I tried the 'Millionaires Dynamite' and Matt the 'Cookie Crumb Mon-Star'

Matt's opinion came after only a couple of bites/licks  "they are much nicer than a ****** (well known competitor!)"

I did my usual style of nibbling the outside chocolate off before tackling the ice cream. I was really surprised at how thick the chocolate was, and loved the mix of chocolate and honeycomb.

Usually I find white chocolate too sickly, this wasn't the case when it was my turn to try the 'Cookie Crumb Mon-Star'.. The mix of the creamy vanilla ice cream, the sweet cookie crumble, milk chocolate drops and Belgian white chocolate was heavenly!

They were both a delicious after dinner treat and more than satisfied our sweet cravings!

We are still yet to try the 'Totally Minted' -  a classic combination of mint ice cream with a stream of chocolate mint fondant, packed with real dark chocolate covered mint pieces smothered in Belgian milk chocolate and sugar mint pieces.

At the usual price of £1.99 for a box of 3, I think that they are great value.

Better still, they are currently on offer in Tescos 2 boxes for £3 - you cannot go wrong!

Disclaimer: I was sent a voucher for the purpose of this review. All words are honest and my own

Monday, 15 April 2013

A is for... {Alphabet Dating}

Adventure in Southwold...
To enjoy... 


Friday, 12 April 2013

April Showers

Earlier in the week we had a promise of 'Spring' this coming weekend; yet this morning all the forecasters could talk about is 'April Showers'.

What did I have in my head as I drove to work this morning?


(Source: Youtube )
Enjoy : )

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Proud Moment

Last night was one of those nights where I drove home with a beaming smile on my face.. I did something, all by myself, for myself.

You may have previously read about my radio debut and setting the wheels in motion for a new WI group in my area.

When I researched what you needed to set up a new WI, I worried about how I would find 8 ladies to start a group on an estate where I knew no-one.

I set up a Facebook and Twitter account, I starred on the local BBC radio, I sent press releases to the local papers & magazines, before I knew it word was getting around and ladies were interested.

A date was set for our 'exploratory meeting' and as the day grew closer, I became nervous of being the little fish in a big pond .

Never, ever, did I expect to stand up in front of over 70 ladies last night! All 70 of these women had come to the meeting because they were interested in the group - the group that I had created, I had worked hard to set up, and the group that I thought I would struggle to achieve.

It was extremely rewarding and made it all worthwhile when several of them came up to thank me, to congratulate me and to say how much they appreciated my efforts.

The only negative is that we are restricted to 60 members so will have to introduce a 'first come, first served' rule. I never saw that one coming!

Super excited for our next meeting to make us all 'official' and to confirm our committee. I can see myself having social evenings, enjoying new crafts and skills and making lots of new local friends!

I'm just grateful I didn't chicken out!

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Little Fish, Big Pond

When I was younger nothing really seemed to phase me; I wasn't afraid of driving across the country to see friends or family on my own; wouldn't think twice of hopping on an aeroplane to meet friends in another country; I'd happily walk to town on my own without worrying about getting attacked/run over or tripping over; and I would confidently stand up to talk in front of a few hundred people.

The school I went to was small, less than 15 students per class and less than 500 pupils in total. Everyone knew each other by name, knew which house they were in, who's sibling was whose, which bus they took home and what games they played. There were pro's and cons to this; everyone knew each others business, but on the plus, you felt like one big community, a family. I had the extra benefit of being selected as Head Girl in my final year (swot!) which meant I was a role model (ha..ha..ha), the BIG fish in a little pond; the go-to student for those who had concerns and wanted someone to talk to. It also meant I had to do a lot of public speaking; a verse at the annual Christmas Carol concert in the local Cathedral in front of the whole school and their parents; a poem at Burns Night dinner; and a speech at the end of year Speech Day awards.

I left school and sixth form, a very confident and independent female ready to face the challenges that lay ahead.

Little did I realise or appreciate, that I'd very quickly become the little fish in a BIG pond once I got to University. No longer did I know everyone by name; or where they were from; or what course they were studying (although these became the standard questions students asked each other!), I was just one single person amongst several thousand fresh faced students. My confidence took a huge knock. I dreaded having to do group presentations in lectures to the other students in my class; I would never have put my hand up and volunteered to give a solo presentation, I hid away at the back of the room and 'blended in'.

I soon made friends and loved every second of my three years spent at University, but I can't help feeling that it did alter the person I am today.

From then I have worked in 3 different companies - a medium size, a very large size and now I work for a very small business. All of which have taken me time to adjust and find my feet before I open up and 'become me'. I didn't step in the door on my first day with a beaming confident smile and a firm confident handshake, it has taken time for me to feel comfortable in these companies.

For those that have been reading my blog, I now face a new challenge... the WI. I have been the face behind the computer screen organising the setting up of the group, the Facebook comments, the Tweets, the person updating the blog and responding to member enquiries by emails. That, I can do, no problem.

Tomorrow, however, is the first meeting - the one that I have organised, and (very proudly) managed to market it well so that we have around 50-60 ladies coming along, the one where I have to stand up and introduce myself, give the "this is me, the name behind the tweets and messages... hello" and when I think about that, my stomach knots up and I worry that I won't be able to do it, that I'll chicken out and find an excuse.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Alphabet Dating

Tomorrow Matt & I will have been married for 10 months. A very busy 10 months! I think we could probably count on one hand how many of those weekends we've actually spent on our own as Mr & Mrs.

Over the next few months we've made a point of keeping 2 weekends a month to ourselves, not only to try and save a bit of money; to work on our house & garden; but also to enjoy each others company.

Any time we have spent together since saying 'I do' has been mainly doing housework, grocery shopping, and other grown-up things; or sat at home watching rubbish on TV, dinner on laps, iphones/laptops/ipads in hand, conversation to a minimum. Not very romantic or glam, hey?

I exaggerate (slightly) but, now the spring/summer and lighter evenings are hopefully here, we have decided that we're going to start Alphabet Dating to enjoy quality time together, having fun and doing new things.

The process is very straight forward - we take it in turns to plan a date in surprise using each letter from the alphabet.

I picked the short straw and will be starting with the letter 'A' this weekend.

The dates don't have to be expensive; they can be a whole weekend, a day, half a day or even an hour, it's all about finding something different to do and getting out of the usual day-to-day rut.

I'm really looking forward to our 26 dates!

Weightloss Journey Week #8 - 10

I have to confess that the last 2-3 weeks I haven't kept an eye on what I have been eating.. or drinking, for that matter!

Time and time again when 'healthy eating' I really struggle when it comes to socialising. I struggle to find something on a menu that I can chose and know I will enjoy without feeling guilty. I am weak at switching from a large glass of Sauvignon to a gin & slimline tonic.

These last couple of weeks we have stuck to plan Mon-Friday but with various things on at weekends I haven't dared brave the scales!

Tonight we are out for dinner for the 3rd time this week.

As of tomorrow though, I will get on the scales and back on track. I've already been shopping for this week so know that we have SW meals planned for the rest of the week. No excuses.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

What was I doing....

Like a lot of people, as the snow falls outside, I find myself thinking "What was I doing this time last year.."

This is why I have grown to love my blog - I can look back and read exactly what I was doing this time last year and see how things have changed (or not, as the case may be).

I didn't post anything this week of 2012, but I did write two posts the following week which you can read here and here.

This time last year... we had just celebrated my nephews birthday, Mothers Day & Easter - all occasions we have also celebrated in March 2013, except this year my nephew was two:

I absolutely ADORE this little man. He has developed so much over the last few months; he can now sing the ABC song, count the numbers 1-20, talks LOTS and is beginning to put together lots of little sentences.
I am sad we don't get to see him as much as we would like, but it melts my heart to see his face light up when I walk in to the room and walk towards me for a hug! I always worry that he'll forget who I am in between visits, but this shows me that he doesn't.
We had a little birthday party (George Pig themed of course!) at my mums house. Matt's equally adorable nephews came to play and the birthday boy could not take his eyes of the two older boys! He LOVED them! They were brilliant with him and entertained him for hours. It was so special to see them all interact despite their age gaps.
This time last year.. we had just turfed the garden. Easter Monday 2013 Matt mowed, scarified and fed the lawn! (excuse the washing in the photo!!)
Hopefully by the time we actually have some sunshine (ha..ha..ha) we will have a beautiful green lawn to enjoy.
This time last year... we were really busy with our wedmin and were about to book our honeymoon to Sharm El Sheikh... right now a sunny, warm place seems like a (very) distant dream! Sadly I don't have anything similar to write about for 2013!
It's unbelievable to think that it is already the 4th April... we will have been married 300 days tomorrow and it's only just over 2 months until we celebrate our 1st Anniversary.
April is going to be a relatively quiet month for us... to recharge our batteries and (attempt) to save some pennies.

What were you doing this time last year?