Quick 15 minute Spaghetti Carbonara

Everyone loves an indulgent pasta dish, don’t they? Spaghetti Carbonara is one of those dishes that makes your body melt at the thought of it. It’s bacon, cheese and pasta. What’s not to love? Now I’m telling you, you can make this in 15 minutes?! Yes, you can.

A lot of these ingredients are long-life so you can do your weekly shop on the Friday and have this as the perfect meal for Thursday night. I use smoked bacon but you can use unsmoked or even sausages! Yep, sausages. Just remove the sausage skin, divide the sausage into 6, roll each piece into a miniature meat ball and fry up as you would the bacon. It’s so good!

Dietary Swaps. Make it YOUR carbonara.

If you want to make this dish dairy free, swap the parmesan for vegan parmesan or if you’re gluten free, swap the spaghetti for gluten free spaghetti or zoodles. If you wish to make this vegan, check out Vegan Avocado Bean Wraps or Cajun Veggie Stew because this recipe isn’t for you.

Quick 15 minute Spaghetti Carbonara

Spaghetti Carbonara made in 15 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2 hungry people

Ingredients
  

  • 4 rashers smoked bacon diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 200 g spaghetti dry
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup parmesan grated
  • 1 tbsp parsley dried or finely chopped

Instructions
 

  • Begin cooking the spaghetti as instructed on the packet.
  • Fry the bacon bits in a frying pan with the olive oil.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, parmesan and parsley with 3-4 tbsp of water that the pasta is cooking in.
  • Fry the bacon until crispy. Turn off the heat but keep the pan on the hob.
  • Once cooked, drain the spaghetti and add it to the frying pan with the bacon.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the spaghetti and mix the contents of the frying pan together until the spaghetti is fully coated in the mixture. The left over heat from the pan and the heat from the spaghetti will cook the egg.
  • Serve with extra parmesan on top and a sprinkle of parsley.
Keyword carbonara, comfort food, Italian, Quick Dinner, Spaghetti

There you go, Quick 15 minute Spaghetti Carbonara, a fast way to satisfy those creamy pasta cravings. If you liked this recipe, you may also like: Garlic Prawn Spaghetti or Grandma’s Schnitzel Recipe for other comfort food recipes.

Speaking of comfort…

These are unsettling times so why not bring someone else some comfort? I have teamed up with Prestige Flowers to tell you that they are currently offering FREE chocolates with any flower purchase of £19.99 or more. They are also offering next day delivery and offer 7 days a week delivery. Maybe your Nan is home alone during this time and a gift of fresh flowers from you would really brighten her day. It’s tough right now and I can’t imagine being alone during this time. I’m lucky that I have a toddler, a dog and a partner to run around after and fill the days but think of those that are fully isolated. You could make their day. Click here to find out more!

Are you a member of the Ramblings Family? If not, why not? Please read my post about it: Join the Ramblings Family! It would really mean the world to me!

As always, thank you for taking the time to read. I upload new recipes every Thursday so keep your eyes peeled!

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Join the Ramblings Family!

If any of you are loyal readers, you’ll know that I’ve been doing this blogging thing for a while now. I just wanted to take the time to say thank you. I work really hard on these posts for you and I work it around being a Mum and a homemaker. People ask me how I find the time. The answer is, I make time. I know that’s so cliché but when you love doing something and you’re passionate about it, you do make time.

So, nap times, screen time, lunch time, snack time and in the middle of the night are all times I have worked on this blog. I have battled internet issues, laptop issues, account issues, html-very-confusing-falangie issues. Why?

For you.

I like to think I’m helping people. Maybe a Mum who doesn’t know what to do with her kids this weekend, maybe someone who is sick to death of long dinner prep, maybe someone who wants to make something sweet to cheer themselves up or maybe just someone who needs a little pick-me-up and reassurance that it will all be ok. Whoever you are, I like to think I’m building a little family.

So, I have created something that will enable you to join the family! I am providing members of the Ramblings Family with weekly exclusive content. That means content only members of the Ramblings Family can see.

For £5 a month, you will be an official Ramblings Family member and have all of this emailed to your inbox every Monday morning (so you can start your week right).

But what will I actually get for my money?

Good question, inanimate voice. Once you become a Ramblings Family member, you will have access to two things: Exclusive blog content and the Ramblings Family Newsletter.

Exclusive blog content

These are blog posts written especially for my Ramblings Family members. This will be things like: how I plan my meals every week or Mum hacks for toddlers. You will have opportunity to tell me what kind of blog posts you would like to see and these posts will contain infographics (see below) or printables (like beautifully illustrated lists/quotes) created by me for you to use at home.

The Ramblings Family Newsletter

Here is where you’ll be updated about what is going on in my life. You’ll get the inside scoop on what I’m working on, what I’m loving to watch and what I’m listening to. There will also be ‘Shout outs’ where I will recommend products and companies that I love and think you will too, as well as discount codes/vouchers for them! So you could save some money too!

Why?

You might be wondering why I’m doing this. Well, for many reasons. I love what I do and I would love to turn this into an income that can support my family. I also want to support this family. The one I have here on the blog. I have so many creative ideas and projects I want to do for you but, unfortunately, if you want to do anything like that, you need money. So your £5 a month would not only support my little family at home, it will support the blog.
For example: the Ramblings Family is sort of like a super cool club. Wouldn’t it be awesome if we had club T-shirts? Yes! Well, I need money to do that.
That’s the kind of thing I am hoping the Ramblings Family members can help me grow.

Still not sure you want to be a Ramblings Family member? Well, because I love you all so much, you can see below a ‘taster’, if you will. This is just an example of the kind of thing you will be getting every Monday when you join the Ramblings Family.

An example of what the Ramblings Family newsletter contains
Just an example of the beautifully illustrated quotes
Example of an infographic

So what are you waiting for? Join the Family!

Subscribe here:

Subscribe to become a Ramblings Family Member

New and exclusive content emailed directly to your inbox every Monday morning!

But Lottie, I can’t afford that and I still want to support you.

I completely understand. Times are tough and money is hard to come by. Don’t worry, you can still support me by following me on all my social media platforms and sharing my content. It would really help me out if you could share this blog post (or just my site in general) on your social media!

Follow me:

If you like my content, I highly recommend you check out my Pinterest for more recipe or kid activity ideas: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/ramblingsoflottie/boards/

Don’t forget to also join The Ramblings Book Club!

Summer Burrito Bowls Recipe

I love nothing more in the Summer than chilling in the garden, Corona (beer) in hand and chowing down on these delicious Burrito Bowls. You can add any toppings and I do dream of hosting a ‘Burrito Bowls’ party. Ya know, a table full of toppings people can pick from. Things like: cheese, jalapeños, red onion, avocado, hot sauce, tomatoes, peppers or bacon!

“Why put it in a bowl? Why not just make Burritos? Is it just some hipster trend?”

Maybe it is but I am a woman of quality over quantity and everyone knows, the best parts of burritos are the filling. Instead of cramming everything into a tortilla, just bung it in a bowl. You can eat more of the reason you eat a burrito and add extra bits without it compromising the ratio or the full-ness of the tortilla. It’s basic science, Karen. It maybe a trend, it may have started to reduce carbs in a diet but that doesn’t mean carb-lovers and non-hipsters can’t enjoy it!

“I don’t have time to create a Burrito Bowls salad bar for my family at dinner time.”

That’s ok, neither do I! Here’s some short cuts for you:
1. Buy microwave rice. Microwaved in 2 minutes. Saves washing up. Pop it in the microwave once you’ve finished making the chilli and *PING* rice is ready.
2. Buy jarred jalapenos, already grated cheese or frozen veggies. Defrost the veggies in the morning or in hot water while you’re cooking and add them to the bowl.
3. Don’t have time to cook chilli in the evening? Check out my Super Easy Slow Cooker Chilli. Set it up in the slow cooker that morning and when you come home, you’ll have beautifully cooked chilli ready to eat!

So here you have it, my Summer Burrito Bowl recipe. (You’re welcome, Karen).

Summer Burrito Bowls

A quick and easy Summer dinner recipe.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican

Ingredients
  

  • 500 g ground turkey (or beef)
  • 1 tin red kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 sachet Swartz Chilli Con Carne Mix
  • 1 packet microwave rice or any rice you like
  • 250 g cheese grated
  • 1/2 red onion diced
  • 1 avocado stoned and sliced
  • 1 jar chopped jalapenos optional
  • Any sauces optional

Instructions
 

  • Brown the mince in a sauce pan with oil.
  • Once fully browned, add the kidney beans, chopped tomatoes and the contents of the Chilli Con Carne sachet.
  • Pour in 125ml cold water. Leave to simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Microwave the rice.
  • Divide your bowl into two sections and fill one section with rice. Fill the other with chilli.
  • Top the chilli side with cheese. Top the rice side with red onion, avocado slices and jalapenos.
  • Drizzle hot sauce over the entire bowl.
Keyword avocado, beans, Burrito, burrito bowl, chili, Chilli, Easy dinner, mexican, Quick Dinner, rice, Summer

Obviously, the last two instructions are optional but that is how I assemble mine. I love spicy food! However, if you’re not a fan on spicy food, you could add sour cream or squeeze some lime over the top for a zesty and refreshing flavour. I keep meaning to add tortilla chips to this or Doritos on the side with some fresh salsa because I feel like that would accompany the bowl really well.

I hope this recipe becomes a new favourite for some of you because it is definitely one of my favourites! Don’t forget to follow me on social media and follow the blog so you can be the first to know when I upload next.

In other news…

I just wanted to use this section of the post to announce that something very exciting is coming to the blog this Sunday. I feel like I say that a lot however, this is something I am whole-heartedly, nervously excited about. It would mean the WORLD to me if you would read the post on Sunday and join in on my new adventure. This is something I have put my heart and soul into creating for you, my lovely readers and I have so many things I want to give to you. This is the first step and I cannot achieve anything I want to without YOUR participation. So excited and also slightly pooping myself. As always, thank you for reading and I love you lots! xx

I just reached 150 followers on my Instagram! It may not seem like a lot to some but I am so grateful. I spend most of my time on Instagram so go ahead, follow me and join the family:

https://www.instagram.com/charlotterose293/

The Ramblings Book Club

Yes! I’m excited to announce that I am launching an online book club! I always say I want to read more and when I mention it to other people they say the same thing. So, I thought why not create a book club to motivate myself to read more and, in turn, motivate others too. One book a month. That’s 12 books a year. Doesn’t seem like much but it’s 12 more books than I otherwise wouldn’t have read.

So, if you’re like myself, why not join in? The first Sunday of every month, I will write a review of the book we have read and announce the new book for the following month. I’m hoping this will give people the opportunity to discuss the book in the comments and bond with people during a time where people seem to be at a great distance. Giving people the chance to discuss a book. Not the news, not the pandemic, not doom and gloom but something that allows you to escape that and communicate together.

With that in mind, I am excited to announce our first book is…

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory.

About the Book

When freelance writer Nikole Paterson goes to a Dodgers game in LA with her actor boyfriend, the last thing she expects is a scoreboard proposal. Saying no isn't difficult - they've only been dating for five months, and he can't even spell her name correctly. The hard part is having to face a stadium full of disappointed fans...
At the game with his sister, Carlos Ibarra comes to Nik's rescue and rushes her away from a camera crew. He's even there for her when the video goes viral and Nik's social media goes crazy. Believing that neither of them are looking for anything serious, Nik embarks on an epic rebound with the handsome doctor, filled with food, fun, and fantastic sex. But when their glorified hookups start breaking the rules, will they be brave enough to admit what they're really feeling?

Get the book now at Waterstones!

About the Author

Jasmine Guillory is an American romance novelist. Her works' protagonists are often African-American professionals. In February 2019, her book, The Proposal, was ranked on The New York Times Best Seller list for paperback trade fiction.

Why did I choose this book to start with? Because I want to read it! It’s one of those books that I bought a while ago that I constantly look at and think “I must get round to reading that”. Next thing I know, weeks, months, years have passed and it still sits on the ‘to-read’ list. If you have a book like that, leave it in the comments below. You never know, it might be the next book in the Ramblings Book Club?

So, to summarise:
WHO? Anyone can join the book club.
WHEN? First Sunday of every month (I’m giving you a head start this month).
WHERE? Here on the blog!
WHAT? BOOKS! Just pick up the book in any form you like, be it hardback, paperback or digital download and get reading. You have a month to read it until I publish my review and announce the next book.
WHY? If you want to read more, connect with others or are just looking for book recommendations.
HOW? Follow the blog so you’ll be emailed when the next book club post is published before anyone else.

I hope you take the time to read along and participate in the comments! What are some of the books you wish to see in the coming months? Leave your suggestions in the comments 🙂 xx

6 Handprint Art Projects for Kids

Since Lock Down, I’ve had to fill my afternoons with activities for my toddler. Going to the park or soft play or seeing friends/family isn’t an option, so I started doing things like: music time, story time, more garden play, messy play and painting! Olivia gets bored of painting quite quickly and she’s still too little to do proper art projects. So why not have some fun with it? So we tried some handprint art!

I found ton of handprint art for kids ideas on Pinterest so, I thought I would recreate some of my favourites. You can do these in paint or card. You can make these into greeting cards or gifts for loved ones. I love these because not only is it a fun activity for you and your kid but it’s also a treasured keepsake. Something you can look back on and reminisce on when they were small.

All you need for these crafts is:

  • kid-safe paint
  • coloured card
  • scissors
  • tape/glue
  • felt tips
  • pencils/pens
  • child’s hand

1. Flamingo Handprint Card

  1. Make an outline of your child’s hand on pink card.
  2. Draw the neck and head of the flamingo to roughly the same size as the hand.
  3. Cut both out and attach with tape or glue.
  4. Draw some legs, cut out and attach with tape or glue.
  5. Write your message on the back.

2. Dinosaur Handprint Card

  1. Make an outline of your child’s hand on card (colour of your choice) ensuring your child’s fingers line up with the edge of the card.
  2. Fold the card so the fold lines up with the edge of your child’s wrist.
  3. Cut out hand ensuring you cut through both layers of card while keeping the fold by the wrist. You should be left with a hand shaped card.
  4. Draw head and neck of dinosaur in the same coloured card. Cut out and attach to the back of the card with the hand facing down (so the fingers are like the legs and tail).
  5. Draw on eyes, nostrils, mouth and any other features of your dinosaur. You could even use goggley eyes for your dinosaurs to make them extra cute!
  6. Write your message inside.

3. Family Handprint Art

This one is my favourite and makes the perfect gift! You can also do this with paint but I preferred it with card)

  1. Draw an outline of your child’s hand in their choice of coloured card. Cut it out.
  2. Do the same with members of your household until you have a collection of different coloured handprints.
  3. Layer them so the smallest is on top and the largest is on the bottom. Secure together with glue.
  4. Frame for a gift. This would also look great in the centre of a wreath for the holidays or a Christmas ornament. You could write people’s names on them and the date on the back for a memento that will last forever.

4. Volcano Handprint Art

I think this one is so cute! Again, can be made into a card or gift. This can also be done with paint. Instead of cutting out your child’s handprint just get them to make a handprint in paint.

  1. Make 2 outlines of your child’s hand. One on yellow card and one on orange card. Cut them out.
  2. Draw and colour in a volcano. You could print one off or get your kids to draw one (even better).
  3. Use the handprints as lava spewing out the top of the volcano. Glue the card cut-outs or get your kids to make a handprint in paint at the top of the volcano.
  4. Decorate how you wish.

5. The Hungry Caterpillar Handprint Art

We had the most fun making this one!

  1. Paint your child’s palm green with kid-safe paint and their 4 fingers (not their thumb) in blue kid-safe paint.
  2. Make a handprint on white paper/card.
  3. Repeat until you have 3 handprints next to each other.
  4. Paint a red circle for the caterpillar’s head (or use a round sponge stamp like we did).
  5. Once fully dry, draw on the antennae and nose. I made the eyes with yellow card and drew on his pupils then attached with glue.

6. Seasonal Tree Handprint Art

I love the idea of this project because it would be a great activity to teach children about the seasons. You could get them to make 4 of these (one for each season) and make their tree look different for every season. For example, Spring could have light green and pink/yellow dots, Summer could have dark green, light green and red dots, Autumn could have orange, red and brown spots and Winter could have none (make it a snowy scene). I made an Autumn one because it’s my favourite season.

  1. Place your child’s hand in the middle of the page. Draw around your child’s hand and arm. Colour or paint it in brown. This will be the trunk of the tree.
  2. Using your chosen colours, create the leaves making it more crowded around the trunk of the tree and gradually getting more spaced out away from the trunk. I used felt tips to make the dots but I love the idea of kids using cotton buds and paint to make this.

If you liked this, you may also like: Fathers Day Crafts For Kids
Super Easy Valentine Crafts To Do With Your Kids
At Home Activities For Toddlers
Mickey and Minnie Mouse Cupcakes

If you want to see more fun things to do with your little ones, check out my Pinterest! I have a “Kids Activities” board and a “Toddler Activities Board”: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/ramblingsoflottie/boards/

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. It really does mean a lot. Keep your eyes peeled because I have some very exciting things coming out on the blog in the next week. Two posts in particular I am incredibly excited to announce to you! See you soon! xx

Vegan Avocado Bean Wraps

Whether you’re vegan or not, this is a really yummy and quick dinner recipe. And, yes, Steven requests this dinner (so you know it’s good when it’s loved by a worshipper of meat and cheese). Another great thing about these vegan avocado bean wraps is that the ingredients are really cheap and easy to find anywhere. It’s not a vegan recipe that you have to go to a special wholefoods shop or vegan market. If you’re not vegan, you can add cheese or sour cream. I personally add quite a lot of chilli because I love spicy food but you don’t have to add any and it’s still delicious.

I used a tin of 3 beans but, if you are feeding a larger amount of people, I suggest you use a tin of red kidney beans and a tin of butter beans (or any beans you like) with 2 jars of salsa.

Vegan Avocado Bean Wraps

A quick, simple and cheap, Mexican-inspired vegan recipe.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tin mixed beans
  • 1 jar salsa
  • 1 bell pepper chopped
  • 2 tbsp chilli powder or however much you like
  • 2 avocados
  • 6 wholemeal wraps
  • 1 jar jalapenos optional
  • Any sauces you like (I like sriracha)

Instructions
 

  • Rinse the tinned beans and heat in a saucepan with the bell pepper. Add salt and pepper.
  • Once softened, add the jarred salsa.
  • Cook for a few minutes, then add the chilli powder. Stir thoroughly.
  • Meanwhile, cut the avocado into slices.
  • Assemble the wraps. Add the bean/salsa mix to the middle of the wrap. Lay avocado on top. Add chopped jalapenos (optional) and sauces. Fold like a fajita. Enjoy!
Keyword avocado, bean, mexican, salsa, vegan, wrap

This is perfect for a quick Summer meal or a Mexican themed get-together. You can add anything you like to this! Maybe you’d prefer fresh salad, cheeses, crispy onions, ranch dressing or maybe you make a mean guacamole. You can adapt this recipe to make your own and something the whole family will love!

If you are having a Mexican themed party, I highly recommend you check this out:

So this is the last recipe for June! How did you guys the Vegan Avocado Bean Wraps? Do you like the new recipes every week? Let me know what you think in the comments below or let me know on my socials! Thank you so much for taking the time to come to my blog. It really means a lot. I have so many new and exciting things for July, that I can’t wait to share with you guys. Keep your eyes peeled!!

June Recipes: Grandma’s Schnitzel Recipe
Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes
Garlic Prawn Spaghetti
Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

How to Handle Mum Guilt

This post is proudly brought to you by Heather from http://parent-pop.com/. She has a great blog that you should go check out! I also did a guest post for her about learning activities for children with Autism and ADHD. Click here to give it a read!

How to Handle Mum Guilt

I think if you are a parent, you will probably be familiar with this feeling. The horrendous pull in the pit of your stomach telling you that you are doing a terrible job at some aspect of your parenting – commonly referred to as mum guilt.

Now I am not saying that this is solely a mother’s problem and dads do not get this guilt too – maybe they do. But I do think there is a good reason it is known as ‘mum guilt’ and not ‘parent guilt’ or ‘dad guilt’. There is often a huge amount of pressure which falls on a mother’s shoulders – work, childcare, cooking, cleaning, shopping, and organising, to name but a few of our potential responsibilities. On top of that, society often tells us that we should be the emotionally supportive and nurturing rock to our children, whilst making sure they get a good education, taking them to clubs and make sure they have hobbies, and making sure they are fit and healthy. And while we juggle the various roles motherhood throws at us, we often feel we are supposed to be slim, glamourous, and attractive.

Photo by Polina Zimmerman on Pexels.com

Oh, and I should probably mention that at the same time we should be a good partner to our significant other too.

Whilst maintaining our own friendships.

And caring for the pets.

In fact, when you really think about it… are you even surprised you have mum guilt with this much on your plate?!

——————————————-

As much as I hate to admit it to myself, I am prone to being a worrier and a perfectionist, and believe me when I say that this does not do me any favours when it comes to feeling mum guilt. Here are just a few of the things I have found myself worrying about in the last few months (during lock down) as a parent:

What I have fed my children

I care very deeply about the health of my children, and goodness knows this is the root cause of some of my guilt here. I care whether they’ve had enough fruit and vegetables, whilst worrying that they’re rotting their teeth by eating too much fruit. I care that they’ve had too much sugar in one go, whilst worrying that I’m too strict on the amount of treats I allow them to have. I care that they’ve eaten pizza more times in the past month than I want to admit (quick, easy and no complaining), but I also worry that I’m setting them a bad example by not cooking a gourmet meal each evening.

Photo by Marco Fischer on Pexels.com

My children’s bedtimes

With lockdown, our routines have gone a little haywire to say the least. My boys have gone to bed a little later, and gotten up a little later, as have I. However, this leads me to worry whether they’ve had enough sleep (or even too much?), whether I am encouraging them to be lazy by not making them get up at their usual time, and whether they will tell their friends the shamefully late times I have let them stay up watching movies with me.

Photo by Snapwire on Pexels.com

The amount of screen time my kids are getting

When you’re home all the hours under the sun because you’re not allowed out, is it even possible not to let your kids have more screen time than usual? I feel guilty every time I let them put on the gaming consoles because I need to work from home, and for letting them watch a little too much TV when they first wake up. I feel guilty when my kids ask me what they can do to earn more screen time, and I feel guilty when my children tell me how much more screen time their friends get than they do.

Photo by Jessica Lewis on Pexels.com

The lack of exercise they have had recently

Some days, I don’t even think the kids stepped outside of the house. Normally, they are incredibly active, but lockdown has turned us into a family of happy hermits, and we have all found peace with our more relaxed pace of life. But I still find myself thinking I should be getting them to do more, and equally as guilty when I encourage them to do exercise when they are feeling relaxed.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

My children’s education

I am a teacher, and yet this still worries me. Am I getting my children to do enough learning? Or too much? Am I being too hard on them? Or too soft?

This is just a handful of my mum guilt worries, but I think you get the picture.

How do I handle mum guilt?

As you can see, there are so many areas of my parenting that have been affected by mum guilt, and that is over a relatively short space of time. I don’t necessarily think all mum guilt is bad, and sometimes I find it motivates and inspires me to be a better parent. But I also understand that if I let each and every little bit of worry and guilt take hold of me, I would drive myself crazy. With this in mind, I strive for a happy medium of the two: just enough guilt that I don’t become complacent in my parenting abilities, but not enough that I want to hide in a dark cupboard and cry about how crap I am as a mother.

Photo by Marcelo Chagas on Pexels.com

To get to this happy medium, here are a few things I have had to reflect on and accept on my parenting journey:

  • I am not a perfect parent – and nobody else is either. As I previously mentioned, I am a perfectionist with very high standards for myself, so this is something it took me a while to come to terms with. But once I embraced the idea that I am a good enough parent, and I don’t have to be the best parent, I felt a lot less guilty when I wasn’t putting 110% into my kids 110% of the time.
  • I should not compare myself to other parents. No good ever came from comparing yourself or your kids with other people. I have to accept that I am who I am, and I do what I do, and there’s very little I can do to change that. I have realised that other people do not always show you their true selves, or polish their images to portray what they think people want to see – and this is especially true when you consider social media. I feel a lot better when I focus on my own family and what makes us happy, rather than what might make other people happy.
  • I am too hard on myself sometimes. I have given myself too much pressure in the past, and focussed too heavily on the negatives about myself than the positives. Once I realised this, I was able to begin to start celebrating my strengths more, and let go of the things that I’m less happy with but cannot change about myself.
  • I must accept the things I cannot control. There are some things which make me feel guilty that I can do nothing about. So, what is the point in worrying about them? I have accepted that bad things will happen sometimes, and that is life unfortunately. I cannot protect my children from things that make them feel upset or humiliated, but I can be there to support them and help them learn valuable life lessons from challenging events.
  • I do not need to care what other people think. I feel sad that I wasted many years of my life wrapped up in what other people thought about me and trying to avoid their judgements. The same can be said for parenting, and I can think of times where I have changed my actions or conversation as I worried that I would be perceived negatively as a parent. But nowadays, I have taught myself to challenge this negative though – who really cares what other people think as long as my family and I are happy? And I am a lot happier for it.
Photo by Katie E on Pexels.com

Remembering to consider these things on my personal journey helps me to stay focussed on what is truly important when it comes to my parenting. The worries and guilt are still present in me, but I can now evaluate my thoughts and feelings better and understand whether they need a reaction or not.

If you are experiencing mum guilt, I would encourage you to reflect on your individual parenting strengths, as well as those areas for development. I am certain that you will notice that for the most part, you are a great mum with your children’s best interests at heart. Everyone has things they could probably do improve a little, but that’s all part of the parenting journey – and I believe it is called a journey because every parent is travelling down that long and bumpy road called parenthood. Our children won’t remember the time that you didn’t make a healthy meal or let the house get messy, but they will remember all the love and care they received from you while they were growing up.

Photo by Josh Willink on Pexels.com

I have decided that mum guilt is nature’s way of reminding you that you care – celebrate it, be proud of it, but remember not to let it get too heavy for you to carry on your own.

Love, Heather x

If you liked this you should check out more of Heather’s stuff at http://parent-pop.com/

You may also like: Mum-tivation
#MakingOverMotherhood
Olivia’s 1st Birthday

Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes

Some of you may have seen pictures of these beauties on my social media (by the way, if you aren’t following me, you should!) so I thought I would share the recipe to my Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes. I try to make these at the weekend for the family. If you’re short on time in the mornings, you can make the batter in advance, cover and leave in the fridge overnight ready to fry up for breakfast!

I don’t make these pancakes every weekend but I think they’re great for special occasions! Birthdays, Father’s Day, Anniversaries, breakfast for dinner and especially global pandemics, are all great excuses to make these light and fluffy blueberry pancakes. If you’re not a fan of blueberries just swap them out for chocolate chips or check out my Fluffy Bunny Pancakes recipe!

My little girl is not the biggest fan of fruit but she loves these pancakes and they are reasonably healthy. I know, I absolutely cover them in icing sugar but, for my daughter, I just drizzle a bit of honey on the top and they’re just as sweet. There’s so many things you could serve these with. My fiance likes his with maple syrup or served warm with vanilla ice cream (which is my favourite but I don’t usually have the time) . Maybe kids would love these served with whipped cream and sprinkles. The possibilities are endless!

Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes

The perfect healthy-ish pancakes for a fun meal!

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil (plus extra to add as you go along)
  • 120 g plain flour (sifted)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp ground almonds
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 184 g greek yogurt
  • 6 tbsp almond milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50-75 g blueberries
  1. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground almonds, sugar and lemon zest into a small bowl.

  2. Whisk the yogurt and milk together in a large bowl. Afterwards, add the egg and extract. Whisk until smooth.

  3. Carefully add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until you have a smooth, thick batter.

  4. Fold in the blueberries carefully and set aside.

  5. Heat a frying pan on a medium heat and add your oil.

  6. Once fully heated, ladle the batter into the pan to make a medium sized pancake.

  7. Once you see bubbles forming on the top, flip the pancake over gently and allow the bottom to turn a golden brown.



  8. Plate up and add your toppings!



These are a bit more work than your usual pancake but I promise you, it’s worth it! If you do recreate these, I would love to see! Follow me on my social medias and feel free to send me your pancake creations!

Tell me in the comments what your favourite pancake toppings are? Are you a whipped cream and sprinkles type of person or do you prefer the traditional syrup? Let me know!

You may also like: Fluffy Bunny Pancakes or Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

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Fathers Day Crafts For Kids

Father’s Day is coming up and with everything in short supply, at the moment, why not make something for Dad, Grandad, Step-Dad or father figure in your life? Not only does it mean more but it’s also a fun activity for the kids and some of these you can treasure forever! Without further delay, here are my favourite Father’s Day crafts for kids!

Following in your footsteps craft

This piece is great because you can turn this into a card, framed artwork or even do this on a canvas! Not only is it super cute but it’s a life long memento. You are encapsulating your little ones’ feet (not forgetting the super cute toes) in a piece of artwork that will last a lifetime. In years to come you can look back on it and reminisce about the times they were small.

All you need to do is (carefully) paint the bottom of “Dad’s” shoe with kid paint (I used a sponge to minimise the mess on the sole) then carefully press it onto your card or canvas.

Wipe the paint off of the sole of the shoe with a damp cloth. Then, using a different colour of kid-friendly paint, paint the bottom of your child’s foot and make a print in the middle of “Dad’s” shoe print.

You can write anything you like around it but I thought ‘Following in your footsteps’ fitted nicely here.

And there you go! A perfect gift, or card, for Father’s Day.

Father’s Shirt Card

This is probably for the older kids but I love how versatile this can be. For younger children, you could use white paper and make the shirt in advance for them to colour in and design their own shirt for Dad.

Shirt Cards

How to make shirt cards

Equipment

  • Coloured card
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Shirt buttons/stickers/pens

Instructions

  • Fold a piece of, either A4 or A5, card in half.
  • Cut 1/3 of the way into the card near the top ensuring you cut through both layers. Do the same on the other side.
  • Open your card and cut down the spine to meet your first cut.
  • On the back page of your card, join the cuts you made so you remove a strip from the top.
  • On the front page of your card, fold over the top pieces until the top corners meet in the middle and form your collar. Secure with glue.
  • Cut out a tie/bow tie from different coloured card. Decorate and glue into place.
  • Draw buttons on the shirt or use stickers. If you are making a larger card, you could even design it so the tie lifts up to reveal a special message!

You could use real buttons you have laying around and just glue them on, or even stickers! I have even seen people colouring bow pasta (raw) and gluing them on to look like a bow tie! GENIUS!

‘Dad’ Finger Paint Card

Again, I know I put ‘card’ in the heading but you could easily frame this or do this activity on a canvas.

Simply cut out your letters in card and using tape folded over on itself (so it’s sticky on both sides) attach it to the card.

Then your child can paint all over the card. Little ones can use their hands and feet and older ones might like to paint a pattern over the top.

Once your artist is finished, carefully peal off the card letters and set aside to dry.

Baked Treats for Father’s Day

Who doesn’t love yummy treats? Especially Dads! Brownies, cupcakes, cookies, the list is endless but here are a few ideas for you:
Star Wars Day: Wookie Cookies if Dad is a bit of a Star Wars fan,
My Vanilla Cupcake Recipe to put your own design on
Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins maybe for breakfast? Why not?
Another idea for Father’s Day breakfast: Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes!

Also check out…

Hand and footprint craft – ‘LOVE’

This LOVE canvas was made with my toddler. You can find out how I made it here: Super Easy Valentine Crafts To Do With Your Kids

If you liked my Father’s Day crafts for kids, you might also like: At Home Activities For Toddlers
Lock Down Daily Routine For Toddlers

For more toddler and kid craft inspiration, follow me on Pinterest! I am always pinning new activity/craft ideas. Look out for my “Kid Activities” and “Toddler Activities” boards https://www.pinterest.co.uk/ramblingsoflottie/ .