Tag Archives: tea

Senior Moments

Senior Moments

So am I a senior then?  Because I think I must be.  Had to share this, if only so I can record the early stages of going stark raving bonkers.  Maybe I can print this out later and hand it to someone medical-like and they can then go ‘Hmmm…..yes, Mrs Wilkinson, we think you may have a problem here’

My darling husband made me a cup of tea, unfortunately it went cold before I could drink it.  So, cup in hand, I went into the kitchen thinking ‘I’ll just bob my cuppa in the microwave and heat it up.’  Nothing wrong with that is there?  But… as I was thinking these very words, I headed towards the washing machine, stared at it, and was genuinely thinking about opening the door.

I have no idea what I was planning on doing, but whatever it was, it was not good.  I came to my senses before the situation escalated horribly.

Is this how it starts?  In a few months time, will I find myself climbing on buses and forgetting where I’m going?  Wearing one welly boot and one sandal because it’s kinda rainy and kinda sunny out there, and I just want to be prepared for all weathers?

Is this middle age?  Is this a senior moment?  Should I beg my doctor for Hormone Replacement Therapy or a brain transplant? I suppose the signs were there when I cooked a salmon in the dishwasher.  Perhaps I’ll find myself absentmindedly shoving steak and chips in the washing machine and putting on a hot wash some time very soon.

Help!

P.S Someone has very kindly pointed out that stress and sleep deprivation can cause this sort of behaviour and that they heard about someone who put cat litter in their washing machine drawer.  I am VERY relieved I’m not on my own with this sort of thing.  Still think it’s a bit odd though…

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Organix

The Organix website shouts ‘Start a lifetime adventure with food!’ which I think makes a great opening line for this review.   We’re all good eaters at this house so we were all very pleased to be asked to try out some of their yummy grub.   My kids are definitely beyond weaning, which is really the target audience for Organix meals, but they’re not beyond appreciating decent food.   So we revved up our tastebuds and had a munch on some of these.  Here’s what we thought!

Nice packaging, convenient to store (doesn’t need refridgerating), looks wholesome. All good so far!

I think Organix meals are a great idea for parents who have limited time, but still want to make sure their kids are getting  ‘proper’ food.  When my two were younger I experimented with making my own baby food and toddler food, and although it is definitely a fun thing to try, if you’re surviving off a minimum of sleep due to teething and tantrums, it’s not always easy to get on with.  These meals, in my eyes anyway, are a guilt free short cut.  Check out the ingredients on the back, no strange sounding additives you can’t pronounce – all familiar sounding food stuffs which is reassuring.

If you made this meal yourself, I should imagine the ingredients would be almost identical.

Creamy chicken pasta! You can see all the meat and veg, no grey ‘mush’ here – nicely textured for a toddler to get their teeth into.

This looks like grown up food, but it’s just soft enough for kids to easily manage with their new grown teeth. It’s not cooked into soggy oblivion which helps get them used to eating ‘real’ food.

The above meals are for 1 – 3 year old children, they tasted nice, although a little bland for my two.  I suspect that’s a wise move though, my kids are older and have slightly more sophisticated tastes these days – younger kids need a while to adapt to strongly flavoured foods (I think so, but that’s just my opinion, if your child was raised on chicken curry, I take it all back!)

My question is, are these meals for chunky toddlers, or is it chunky food for toddlers? I think I’ve said ‘chunky’ too much. It’s one of those words that sounds daft after you’ve said it more than three times. Chunky-chunky-chunky!

Another question, were these crackers made from very small ‘mini’ cheeses, or is it because they’re mini and fit easily into a toddler’s hands?  Answers on a postcard please.

These were in the above packet, they reminded me of a well known brand of baked cheese mini biscuit things, but with far less salt and less strong cheese flavouring. They were very popular with the kids who ate a packet each in about 2 minutes.

Veg & Oat Bars, namely tomato and carrot. I’m so sorry, we all tried very hard to like these, they sounded so nutritious and looked moist and nommy. Unfortunately all the family found them a bit odd. It’s all a matter of taste though! Sorry Organix!

I don’t know why kids love this kind of bottle so much! Perhaps they remind them of baby bottles? My two merrily drank this stuff and said it was really nice. The ingredients again are nice and homely. No aspartame in evidence unlike other drinks I could mention.

These are very easy to eat, nice and crunchy, contain carrots of all things, and are very moreish. Ideal for packed lunches and devoured in seconds.  I can’t show you a picture of the snacks, because I got distracted for a minute and when I came back they’d all gone!

I saved the best for last. Personally I could live off this stuff, never mind the kids! It’s slightly gooey puree, that tastes of real fresh fruit. It’s naturally sweet without added sugar, and is a clever / sneaky way to get children to down one more of their portions of 5 fruit and veg a day. We all really, really loved this, brilliant squeezy packaging too which you can reseal if they don’t finish the lot in one go.

Organix have a ‘No Junk!’ policy, and I honestly did have a good look at everything we were sent, it seems they are doing a great job at keeping that promise.  (unless I’ve missed something, which I don’t think I have?).   I’ll admit not everything on here was to my taste or to my kids’ taste, but that’s just normal isn’t it.  I’ve slaved over a hot stove many an evening, only to have them turn their noses up at what I’d consider fantabulous food. Can’t win ’em all! At least you can be reassured that Organix consider and take your child’s nutrition seriously.

If you’d like to have a look around the Organix website, please click HERE.  Great for packed lunches, snacks, meals and weaning!

Organix sent me a selection of their products to review, no other financial reward was given.  I highly recommend the puree, we could have easily have got through bucketfulls of the stuff!

Pure Tea!

Pure Fresh Tea!

If someone had told me that I’d one day post a blog about three tea-bags I’d have laughed in their face.  I mean, that just doesn’t happen does it?  But, sheepishly I have to admit I am now going to do just such a thing. Do not laugh at me!!!

Pure Fresh Tea asked me if I’d like to blog about some of their products, and being a tea fan an’ all I jumped at the chance, mug in hand.  I don’t really know what I was expecting, a range of tea-bags I suppose?  Well, the lovely people at Pure Fresh Tea sent me these, a ‘sample’ of tea-bags.  Yorkshire Tea also sent me a free tea-bag in the post on the same day, with a lovely card as it was my birthday and I nearly blogged about that too.  But that would have meant I was blogging about four tea bags and I didn’t want to over-do things.

Three tea bags! These arrived in a spacious pink crepe paper lined box. Very pretty.

I opened these up (there’s a neat thumb bit where you neatly push open the packaging) and pulled the tea-bags out to have a nosey.  This is what they look like:

You can still see the flowerheads on the camomile!

From left to right, the first one is ‘Mint’, the second one is ‘Camomile’ and the third one is ‘Black Lavender.’  All of them are in a organza-style bag which you steep in boiling water.  None of this disposable papery stuff here!  This is the closest I’ve ever seen to tea leaves in ballgowns.  Very posh!

Now to taste them!  I had three mugs of tea in one evening so I could get this much overdue blog online.  They have been very patient.  As a result I’m amazed I managed to blog at all, I think I’ve spent rather more time than usual dashing upstairs for a wee.

Here’s a photograph of my favourite mug of the moment with one of their Camomile tea bags in it.  Steaming hot and pretty too, and that’s not just the mug.  I loved the look of the little camomile flowerheads in their posh dress…erm..bag.

Camomile is very good for the digestion, or so I’m told!

The camomile tea looked more eye-catching than any other camomile tea I’ve ever had before – but I have to say it tasted much the same as any other camomile tea I’ve ever tasted.  Still lovely though.

The mint tea was my favourite which surprised me.  It honestly looks more like the mint you’d find in your mint sauce than in your tea-bag, but that is because Pure Fresh Tea obviously believe in not messing around or powdering their ingredients too much.  It was refreshing, palate cleansing and would make a great cuppa to start the day.

I’m so sorry Pure Fresh Tea, but I wasn’t keen on the Black Lavender.  I thought it tasted a little bit soapy somehow, but that is just down to me and my taste-buds.  I think if you like lavender a little more than I do, you’ll love this.

Each tea-bag can be used 2 – 3 times so I have delicately hung them from the string that lifts my kitchen blinds up and down.  They are drip-drying nicely thanks.

These are the other flavours they stock:

So that’s me done then.  Thanks to Pure Tea I have blogged about three tea-bags.  Oh the shame.  They are lovely tea-bags and expensive and classy and beautiful and dressed immaculately in their chiffonesque bags, but I can’t help but feel a bit silly.

Many thanks to Pure Tea for sending me the samples.  I liked them a lot, can’t write more, sorry, I need to dash off to the little room upstairs again.

You can find Pure Fresh Tea’s very swish website HERE!

No other financial reward was given and all thoughts are my own, because they can’t be anyone else’s can they anyway?

Half Way House Fish Pie

Half Way House Fish Pie

Darlek doesn’t like fish.  She used to eat tons of it when she was little, but has since started pulling faces and gipping if I try to feed it to her now.  This is a huge shame as we all know fish is good for us, it has Omega Whatzisname in it, and is ‘brain food’ apparently.  But nope!  Dalek is adamant that she really does not like the stuff.

The thing is, I do try to include it in the family’s diet, and I don’t like to pander / panda to separate meals so, this is my Half Way House Fish Pie recipe.  It’s a fish pie that isn’t too fishy, even Darlek manages to eat the majority of it.

So you get your casserole dish out first, mine is a lovely one one from Denby products which I adore.  Sorry to show it off, but it’s my pride and joy at the moment.

I thought the Lillies looked pretty reflected on the pottery.

Step One:  Put Fish Pie mix (easily picked up at the supermarket) in the microwave on a defrost function and cook it very slowly so it doesn’t get overdone and go crunchy.  Once the fish is cooked through and flaking slightly, put it in the dish.

Fish in dish. Dish with fish! (Apologies I’m having a Dr Zeuss moment)

I don’t cook the fish in milk as some people do, because if you use that milk with the fish juices in the mashed potato, Darlek refuses to eat it.

Step Two: Part A.  Make a white sauce.  Again I take the easy route, I don’t use a roux.  I put roughly equal amounts of butter, flour and milk all in a pan, heat it and whisk as I go along.  If it doesn’t thicken add more flour.

Step Two: Part B.  Fend off the kids who are by now usually clamouring for their dinner.  Give them a pot of raisins each and shoo them out of the kitchen.

Haphazardly make a white sauce. Taste as you go to make sure it’s not too floury. Do not burn your tongue!

Step Three: Part A  – Add the white sauce to the fish in the dish and add a dash of pepper, and parsley if you have any.

Step Three: Part B – Stop Sausage from raiding the fridge and palm him off with dried apricots this time.

White sauce on fish in dish, fish in dish in white sauce. I’m on a roll with this Doctor Zeuss thing now.

Meanwhile boil peeled and cubed potatoes and steam spinach above the pan to save on gas.  You see I’m practical as well as pretty….well actually I’m probably neither, but it rhymed and fits in with the random Dr Zeuss thing I’ve got going on.

Spinach in pan over boiling spuds, spuds in pan under boiling spinach. I HAVE to find a way to fit a Fox in Socks into this recipe somehow…..

Step Four: Carefully and evenly distribute the spinach over the fish in the dish.

Step Five: Part A – Mash the spuds with ordinary unfishy moo cow milk and butter and spread it carefully on the top of the fish in the dish and the spinach.  I say carefully because it tends to sink if you tip a load in at once.  I find the blobbing here and there approach works best for me.

Step Five: Part B – Yell at the kids who have nicked Babybels whilst I was distracted.

Make a pretty pattern on the top of the mash, personally I like swirls.

Step Six: Part A – Slice and add Mozzarella to the top of the fish in the dish coated with spinach.   The Mozarella I had was square shaped so I played at cheese crazy paving for a little while.

I should do one of those crazy paving paths in our garden, seems I have a talent for this kind of thing!

Chuck the whole lot in the oven and leave for around 25 minutes at about 180 C, just to let it toast and go golden on top.  Serve with a crunchy salad or green beans and sweetcorn if you prefer. We had a salad because I was lazy.

Step 8: Eat!!!!!!!  You’ll find that this is probably the least fishy fish pie ever.  A nice Half Way House Fish Pie for kids who don’t like fish.

Step 9: Finish with a nice cup of herbal tea in some Cath Kidston bedding……erm I mean, a Cath Kidston cup.  And ….relax….

Tea in a cup, no pup in the cup though. Which is a shame. Dr Zeuss eat your heart out!

This is a sponsored post thanks to Palmers Department Stores who kindly sent me the gorgeous Denby Casserole dish and the cute cup.  Many thanks to them and no other financial reward was given.  Both dishwashered and worked exactly as you’d expect them to.  Sorry for the bedding link – I had to include it somehow!