Wholemeal Spiced Cherry & Wheatgerm Muffins

In a muffin mood today.. So I thought I would concoct some using some frozen cherries I had remaining and they turned out well! I wanted to pack in some extra fibre, so added wheatgerm too. Once again, I did not do ‘real’ measuring, just used my large Cath Kidson mug and hoped for the best!

I had a little assistance today from my two year old boy too & he did a great job mixing and tipping and sprinkling!

Ingredients

Dry
1 & 1/2 mugs wholemeal self raising flour
1/2 mug wheatgerm
1/2 mug light brown muscovado sugar
1 tsp mixed spice
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Wet
1 mug milk (I used semi-skimmed)
1/4 mug rapeseed oil (or equivalent)
1 large egg
1/2 tsp almond essence

Other
3/4 defrosted frozen dark cherries

Topping
Mix a small handful of porridge oats, golden demerara sugar and cinnamon together.

Method

Preheat oven to 180° fan. Prepare muffin tin with paper cases.

Sieve dry ingredients together in large mixing bowl. Mix.

Whisk wet ingredients in another bowl.

Gently add wet ingredients to dry in the large mixing bowl and combine until all mixed. If it’s a little stodgy, add a drop more milk.

Add cherries and stir in.

Spoon mixture into cases 3/4 way up case.

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Sprinkle some of the topping on each muffin (or get a small helper to do this!)

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Whack in oven for around 20 minutes until deliciously risen and golden.  Try gently sticking a wooden cocktail stick in the centre of a muffin and if comes out clean, it’s done!

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Leave to cool on wire rack for a few minutes before trying one with a large cuppa tea!

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They were obviously a hit with my children as I came back to the kitchen and someone had eaten ALL the muffins! Hmm.

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Sewing & Sunshine

1) Blog readers – Went to my local Sewing Shop yesterday with my mum & ended up choosing some Riley Blake Ladybug Garden fabric & bits ‘n’ bobs to make a small quilt. Sandra was really helpful & whilst paying we got chatting about my crocheting & blog,  turns out she’s been stalking my blog & called me the “muffin queen”!  Nice to know people do read it, so *waves* to you if you are reading!
So excited (& nervous!) to start my first quilt too!

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2) 20 weeks – Sylvie hit the 20 week mark yesterday! She’s a really lovely baby, and I’m enjoying every moment of life with her!

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3) Sunshine & eating al fresco – weather has been glorious this weekend so we’ve all spent a lot of time in the garden. Today, we had yummy burgers complete with salad & fries in the garden, & I even got the sewing machine out to play!

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4) Cushion – whilst sat outside with my sewing machine near the apple tree, I managed to make a cushion cover! Really chuffed as I’ve not sewn for yonks!

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5) Days off – My chap has no work tomorrow as it’s bank holiday & boys are on half term! Yippee! No usual Sunday evening blues…

Sign your name

1) Writing– Albie has taught himself to write his name. I’m really chuffed!

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Nearly got the letters the right way round!

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2) It’s Thursday. – Which means tomorrow is Friday and my eldest will be home from his week away. I’ve really really missed him.

3) Playing – had a little toy sort out and the little boys had a good time playing with octons and fuzzy felt.

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4) Keeping on top!  – did two & a bit bags for laundry today. I hate this job.

5) Bed – I’m off to bed, to snuggle! Night!

Foos, Food, & Family

Five things for today.

1)In the kitchen – made a Herby butternut squash & chickpea soup, and Butternut Squash, orange & sultana muffins with leftover squash. Recipe on previous post.

The two small boys helped me too!

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2) Foo Fighters

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Put Sylvie in her brother’s old Foo Fighters vest! Loved seeing it being worn again!

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3) Merangos
Had a sweet treat after dinner of meringue, Rodda’s Cornish clotted cream & berries. Yum! Albie calls them Rangos so we renamed them “Merangos”!

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4) Texts – had a text from a friend who is very close to having her second baby & hoping for a home birth! Really excited for her & hope she gets a dream labour and delivery. I’d have loved a home birth but it wasn’t meant to be, but I think they are wonderful! Looking forward to an announcement!

5) Brothers – they drive each other spare a lot of the time & I’m always refereeing squabbles… But they really do love each other. This pair below in particular have a good bond, but clash too! I love watching my children interact (on a good day!) – it makes having a large family all the more worth it.

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Frocks galore & Project Pampering

Not posted for a few days so a little positivity catch up…

1) Support Been a pretty up & down few days, but I’ve had hugs & company from my Mama, & chats with lovely friends. I appreciate it so much.

2) 16 weeks Sylvie turned 16 weeks yesterday. She’s been a little off colour but seems to be turning the corner now. We went out wedding attire shopping yesterday with my Mama & she now has more changes of outfit “just in case” for the wedding day than your average celebrity! Yesterday, got a Baker girl frock & a playsuit in the blue cross sale at Debenhams. This having a daughter thing is still a novelty… So many pretty things! 😉

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3) Dens – little Stickle hasn’t been very well, and is very whingy & upset a lot recently. Coupled with his frustration at not being able to communicate well, it’s led to a few meltdowns. Very draining for us all. However, we had a lovely moment yesterday, building a sofa den & it really cheered him up!

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4)Hugs – My four year old kept randomly hugging me and telling me how much he loved me & how pretty & beautiful I was!! This boy will go far!! 😉

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5)New tricks Sylvie was sat in her bouncer last night and learnt how to trigger the blue lights to come on using her feet & hands!

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And a bonus 6) Frocks! – managed to get a couple of dresses yesterday in the sale, for my nephews wedding! I’ve not lost any weight as I’d planned to for the wedding as my priority has been breastfeeding (& cake eating!) but even though I’m overweight, I still felt kinda pretty in new dresses! It’s made me realise how I’d like to start making more effort to defrump myself, wear nicer clothes (instead of my usual crap maternity jeans & baggy tops) & feel happier in my own skin… So project pampering will commence shortly!

Friday feelings

1) Reading – It’s been a good book day with my babies today. Their older brothers are staying at their Nana’s so I’ve managed to have some quality time. Lots of reading together, enjoying & talking about the pictures.
We are loving Alain Grée books a lot at the moment, Nature, Transport & My first book of Animals. Beautiful books!

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Another book we have loved is “When I was born” – it not only looks gorgeous but such a lovely read about the experiences a young child has, and the joys of senses, discovering & learning. It made me well up a bit! (Doesn’t take much though!)

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2) Pretty find – my chap brought home a pretty ceramic toadstool lamp that he found dumped in a box, tested it to make sure it’s safe & he was allowed to have it! I’m thrilled as its right up my street with my toadstool fairy type obsession at the moment & it will be wonderful in my daughter’s room when we finally get round to doing it!

3) Chip van Friday – I wasn’t going to have any tonight but tiredness, & the ease of getting them from the bottom of the road on a Friday meant we had chip van Friday. Albie & Rocco got plates for a carpet picnic & arranged them ready!

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4) New goals – got ideas, goals and projects swimming around my head. This is a good thing, as recently I’ve felt a bit ‘bleh’ & demotivated. Having an objective & something to look forward to is a positive thing.

5) Legs – I’ve managed to have an undisturbed shower & shaved my legs! This doesn’t sound like much or a huge positive, but quite honestly, if you’d seen them before you’d realise why it was a big deal! I was turning into a yeti… I may attempt to wash & comb my hair this weekend, that would be a feat!

Hidden spinach & Daddy time

1) Turning frowns upside down Little boys (& I!) aren’t feeling tiptop today. It’s been quite hard with non-stop whining, but we did some creating & had a good time! It changed the mood of our afternoon and stopped us all getting grotty with each other. Think we will do more arty stuff together as we don’t get chance to do it often, & I’d like to encourage them all to have a go being a little more creative!

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2)Daddy time Joby took Rocco out to a DIY store, & they had a good time! Rocco is what we affectionately call a “Daddy Magnet”! He’s not been feeling very great so he’s extra attached today, following him everywhere! They made a fire together & he ate his dinner on his lap!

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3) Rainbow – found another little top that was passed down in Sylvie’s clothes. Forgot I’d had this & it’s not going to fit her much longer either, but it was lovely bright & cheery!

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4) Hidden Spinach Joby made a smoothie for lunch & I persuaded him to let me stick a handful of spinach leaves in. Nobody was keen on the idea… But there was not a drop left! Big success! In his smoothie was a concoction of banana, frozen strawberries, sultanas, horlicks, honey, spinach, natural yoghurt & milk. Sounds odd.. Tasted amazing!

5) Willpower – First time since the 3rd I had felt like I missed popping on Facebook. Even the lure of needing Candy Crush lives was proving strong, but I resisted. Now, if I could apply this willpower to my diet, that would be great!

A day of decluttering & comfort food

1 Reclaiming space Today was a productive day! My chap emptied an ensuite bathroom that had been previously used as storage for so much STUFF it was practically up the ceiling & you couldn’t open the door properly. Well, it’s all gone! Bags and bags chucked & more to sort & sell/charity. The room is now empty! He ripped out a nasty dusty manky carpet & we are planning on revamping the whole room to make a “grown-up” bathroom! Just need to sell some stuff to get some spare pennies.

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Wish we’d taken a before photo when it was rammed full like something from an episode of hoarders!

2) Multitasking mama – managed to list quite a bit on ebay today whilst feeding & cuddling Sylvie AND we have bids already! Promising start & more dosh hopefully towards laptop/bathroom fund.

3 Bread & Butter pudding Had a wonderful roast dinner made by the man, then to follow a big comfort stodgy pudding that I’d never tried, let alone made before. Was made with two day old tiger bread & a recipe from a book called “Just like my mum used to make”. Not the best photo but was rushing!

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4 Smiles a recurring theme but this little lady can never fail to cheer us up!

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5) bedtime two little boys settled in bed, (it’s been a long day!!), snuggling with the 8yo watching Shrek the third, & looking forward to climbing into my own bed to watch Flight of The Conchords & cosying up with my chap & baby 🙂

When best friends marry, and 12 weeks of baby joy…

Today’s five…

1) huge declutter – we have an ensuite bathroom that’s not been used for years, instead it was crammed full of stuff being stored. Today, it’s nearly empty & with some DIY & a bit of love, we will have a bathroom back! Bags still need sorting but it’s a huge progress. It had been one of those “lets put it off another day” jobs. Phew!

2) My mummy – went our briefly with my mama today, only to a supermarket but it was nice to get out with her 🙂

3) 12 weeks my beautiful baby girl is 12 weeks today. What an amazing few weeks we’ve already shared. I love her more than I thought would be possible! She’s slotted right in to our family!

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4) Love – Two of the loveliest friends I know married today! I don’t think I know of a couple more suited to each other! They never fail to make me laugh, & they have completely made my day – Just wonderful news!

5) Saturday nights Snuggling with some of my brood watching The Voice, with nibbles & drinks – perfect!

Sleepy smiles & storytime

Today, I woke up with the intention of having a much more positive day, despite still feeling a bit bleh. Oh, I long for warm weather & no poorliness!

It’s been a mixed day but mostly good…

1) The weekend starts here– Easter holiday & long weekend with family. VERY much needed.

2) Storytime – sat and read Nature by Alain Grée, with Rocco. Beautiful book. 🙂

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3) Capturing a photo that made my day – my beautiful smily sleepy baby wrapped up close to my heart.

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4) Crochet – made a mouse! Wasn’t the best mouse in the world, (in fact it was supposed to be a bunny!) but my baby liked it, & it has inspired me to practice more amigurumi.

5) Sun – snow is melting more! I can see the bulbs springing through & the promise of Springtime.