Little man N at 6 months old

On N’s monthly updates I usually tend to say that the time has gone quick – this month for some reason, it seems to have dragged (no idea why). But, I still can’t believe he’s 6 months old. He’s half. a. year. old! 

He was weighed at 24 weeks and he was 20 lb 6 oz. He is still shooting ahead of what J was at the same age. The health visitor sounded a little concerned about how much he was gaining and how much he was feeding – I’m not worried though; what am I supposed to do, not feed my baby when he’s hungry?! I know he’ll level out when he starts crawling, just like his brother did.

He’s still developing his cheeky personality and still loves blowing raspberries. Though he now makes a tune and sounds a bit like something from Gremlins! He has the most infectious laugh, especially when we blow raspberries on him or when he’s being tickled. He loves his brother doing ‘this little piggy’ with him and lets off such a high pitched giggly squeal!

I think he’s having a sleep regression. He’s started waking up half way through the night – usually between 1 am and 3 am. Sometimes he will go straight back to sleep with a cuddle if he comes in bed with us, but others he will need a bottle to settle him back down.

He’s finally found his feet – he loves sucking his toes (why do babies love to do that?!). He will also hold both of them and lift his bum up in the air up & down – getting some exercise in! J has also been putting his feet in N’s mouth to chew – lovely!

He has come so far with his rolling. He now rolls all over the place – when I go out of the room he will be in one place, when I come back he will be right at the other side of the room. Also, when he laying on his front he’s started trying to bring his knees up. I think crawling may be on the agenda soon!

He is finally mastering sitting up! He can sit unaided but is still a bit wobbly – cue lots of cushions around him. He now gets grumpy when he’s laying down as he wants to sit, but he can’t quite pull himself to sitting position yet so we still have some practice with that, with us holding his hands.

He still has no teeth. I thought he had one coming through a while ago but it must have just been a spot of milk or something (even though I couldn’t get rid of it at the time). His gums are so hard though and it hurts so much when he chomps on our fingers, so I’m hoping one will appear soon.

Weaning has started! I will be writing more about that in another blog post, but we are doing baby led weaning from the beginning with N so it’s all good messy fun – he hasn’t had anything mashed, pureed or from a spoon (yet – it may happen for convenience at some point when we are out and about).

He also had some other firsts when we were on holiday – his first taste of ice cream (I’ll accept the bad parent award [insert chuckle here]), his first time swimming, and his first time on a swing! I didn’t realise this month had been so busy for him!

He looks nervous on the swing at first but he loved it after that.

Not one facing the camera this time as he wouldn’t sit still and was too focused on the card – think I may have to hold it next time!

Family Friday

Weight loss – week 4

Okay, so it’s technically week 5, but I skipped last week because I was on holiday.

So, I said in my last update that I was going to try to be good whilst I was away. That kind of happened. I didn’t eat as much as I would normally eat on holiday, but maybe my choices weren’t great – we ate out and got meals in a few times. But hey, I was on holiday! I did a bit of walking, but we were on a boat a lot of the time so it was when we happened to stop anywhere.

I’m back on it this week though, as I can definitely feel it; I feel so bloated, and look about 6 months pregnant! I was dreading weighing in yesterday but it wasn’t quite as bad as I was expecting.

So my week 4 stats:

  • start weight – 203.6 lbs
  • target weight – 132 lbs 
  • previous weight – 183 lbs
  • current weight – 191 lbs 
  • weight loss this week – 8 lbs GAIN!
  • weight loss to date – 12.6 lbs
  • weight loss to go – 59 lbs
So oops. I gained just over half a stone. I’m hoping for a half decent loss next week though. 
Watch this space!

Recipe – Salted caramel & chocolate tart (#GreatBloggersBakeOff2014)

As we only returned from holiday on Friday and I didn’t have anything ready for this week’s bake beforehand, I’ve only had a couple of days to get something together before the linky closed (I could have just left it this week and nearly did, but thought I’d join in). I’m not happy with my bake this week – I had a soggy bottom (well, sides – because I didn’t roll to an even thickness) with not enough time to make another pastry case, and my ganache didn’t go too well either. I also didn’t have the right size tart tin! I’m not much of a pastry person to be honest; when I have a pie or a quiche etc. I usually leave half of the pastry, and I’ve only made ganache a couple of times before but that was for truffles so I had more time and the right chocolate. Anyway I’m rabbiting on a bit now, so here goes!

(This is a take on the old favourite of millionaire’s shortbread).

Ingredients (serves 6-8)

  • 200 g plain flour
  • 110 g butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 2-3 tbsp water
Salted caramel
  • 150 ml double cream
  • 100 g light muscovado sugar
  • 30 g salted butter
  • sea salt
Chocolate ganache
  • 200 g chocolate, broken into chunks (dark is best, I only had milk)
  • 100 ml double cream
  • In a large bowl (or food processor [on the pulse setting] if you want to cheat like me), mix together your flour and butter until they resemble fine breadcrumbs, then add the salt. 
  • Slowly add the water to bind together into a ball.
  • Wrap the ball of pastry in cling film and refrigerate for around 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to gas 6/400F/200C.
  • Lightly grease a 7 or 8 inch tart tin (with a removable bottom).
  • Remove the pastry from the fridge, unwrap, and lightly flour a rolling pin.
  • Roll out the pastry turning a quarter turn after each roll to stop it sticking. Roll to 4/5 inches bigger than your tin.
  • Once rolled, pick up with your rolling pin and place on top of your tin, then lightly press around the edges and sides. Leave the excess on to allow for shrinking.
  • Place some baking paper on top of the pastry then add your beans or rice.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and beans and bake for another 5 minutes, until golden.
  • Leave to cool then trim the edges with a sharp knife.
  • To make the salted caramel, heat the cream, sugar & butter in a small pan over a gentle heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved and the butter has melted.
  • Bring the mixture to the boil then simmer for a couple of minutes until it begins to thicken. Add a little salt to taste.
  • Pour into the pastry case and then put in the fridge to cool. It will harden a little but will still be soft to the touch.
  • To make the ganache, heat the cream gently until it starts to bubble. 
  • Add the chocolate and stir constantly as it melts.
  • When you have a thick smooth mixture, pour over the caramel and put in the fridge to set. 
  • Enjoy!

This is my entry to the #GreatBloggersBakeOff2014, theme of pies & tarts – linking up with Mummy Mishaps (not holding out for star baker this week either!).

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Tasty Tuesdays on

Project 365 – Weeks 35-36 (days 236 – 249)

I have a double whammy catch up this week as I’ve been on holiday so didn’t get chance to post last week.
Day 236 / August 24th
My view. Love these little slippers, they were J’s. I love N’s chunky legs too.

Day 237 / August 25th
Rubbish photo day so I only have this from a review I was writing up.

Day 238 / August 26th
I love J’s curls. I get told all of the time that he needs a hair cut, but truth be told, I don’t want to cut them, so not yet!

Day 239 / August 27th
Sorry about the quality of this one but it was another rubbish photo day and I took this on hubby’s phone. Went to say my usual goodnight to J and found him on the floor like this.

Day 240 / August 28th
The day before we went on holiday I decided to try the boys sun suits on. N’s was a bit snug even though it’s 6-9 months and he’s only just 6 months!

Day 241 / August 29th
The first day of our holiday and J was exploring the boat and pointing at the water.

Day 242 / August 30th
Today we passed some men fixing a windmill sail. Rather them than me!

Day 243 / August 31st
A little walk in the woods led us to this bird house that had taken a tumble.

Day 244 / September 1st
6 months old and N’s first taste of ice cream – he did love it!

Day 245 / September 2nd
We had swans & cygnets come to see us when we had moored up.

Day 246 / September 3rd
The donkeys were following me when I was getting back onto the boat, as I had food!

Day 247 / September 4th
N fell asleep in Daddy’s arms. I love this photo.

Day 248 / September 5th
Much needed on the way home from holiday after an early start.

Day 249 / September 6th
I fancied a change of nails – I love the crackle nail polish for an easy nail art effect.
TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Recipe – Chicken & mushroom fried rice

This recipe makes a quick easy midweek meal for the whole family. It can be eaten as a main course or as a smaller side dish. I used whatever veg we had in but you can change it to suit you.

Ingredients (serves 4 as a main dish)

  • 2 bags of boil in bag rice (the cheats option)
  • 1 tbsp oil (or you can use spray oil. none is needed if you use a ceramic or stone pan)
  • 2 chicken breasts, diced
  • 200 g mushrooms, sliced or quartered
  • 4 large spring onions
  • 100 g garden peas (tinned or frozen)
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 10 g butter
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce (I use reduced salt)
  • Cook the rice according to packet instructions.
  • Preheat a large frying pan or wok and cook the chicken until golden.
  • Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Add the spring onions and the peas and continue cooking on a lower heat.
  • In the meantime in a separate pan, melt the butter and then add the eggs and cook until scrambled. 
  • Add the egg to the pan with the chicken and vegetables.
  • Add the cooked rice to the pan and then toss everything with the soy sauce.
  • Enjoy!