My love hate relationship with Facebook

There are some things in life that are pretty amazing, right? Facebook for me has to be one of them. It has bought me back in touch with both family and friends, and I am so grateful for that. It has gained me new friends, who I now consider close friends and the groups on Facebook are a wealth of information and opportunities for any blogger.

However there is a downside to Facebook.

I have people on my Facebook who I wouldn’t necessarily consider friends, I have people on there who annoy the hell out of me and frustrate me. I kinda wish I could stick to my own little niche, and block out anyone who doesn’t fall into that. I have found there are several types of people on Facebook and the following list is by no means exhaustive!

The ‘my life is perfect’ type

We all have that one (or more) person on our Fb, who has the perfect life right? They constantly post perfect photos, and constantly tell everyone how amazing their life is. WRONG! They spent the last hour making their kids pose for those perfect photos, just so everyone knows just how happy they are. The kids are now tired and bored and spend the rest of the day tantruming, but they aren’t going to tell you that. Instead they will tell you what an amazing time they are having. Incidentally, anyone who has to tell you what an amazing time they are having, usually isn’t! Do you have time to update Fb when you are having fun? No, me neither.

The attention seeker

Has to post a status update at least once a day, which leads to comments such as ‘whats wrong’ or ‘no, you are amazing’. No one ever finds out whats wrong, but I would imagine it has something to do with boredom or wallowing in self pity.

The person who is nasty about someone they don’t even know

They’ve seen someone or something, and instead of saying something there and then, they bitch about it on Fb, it could be anything, from someone’s driving, to what someone was wearing. The person in question will NEVER read their Fb, and even if they did, they would have no idea it was about them – totally and utterly pointless! If you don’t have anything nice to say – shut up!!!

The people who take life way too seriously

Don’t you dare crack a joke while this person is around, they will not like, not one little bit! It doesn’t have to offend them, but it could have the potential to offend someone else, who probably isn’t in the least bit offended, but you never know, right?

The bore

You know everything about them, their family, their day to day routine, when they last had a poo, when their child last had a poo, when their dog last had a poo zzzzzzzz……

How do you feel about Facebook? Do you love it or loathe it?

 

Happiness is…..

happiness is

Happiness is….

Hearing my boys giggle Jenny, Mummy Mishaps

Living each day as it comes, in the moment and experiencing every second of it – Stacey, Fives a Fellowship

A cool shower on a hot day! – Annie, Manneskjur

Laughing till you wish you had done your pelvic floor exercises more – Donna, Little Lily Pad

A large glass of rose with friends – Emma, Emma and 3

Found at the bottom of a gin bottle – Tanya, Mummy Barrow

Having friends that make you forget your worries – Carolin, Mummy Alarm

Having a cuddle with the kids after a long hard day at work – Helen, Kiddycharts

Popping my PJ’s on after a busy day – Sarah, Boo, Roo and Tigger too

Peace – Becky, Family Budgeting

Travel! - Emma, A Bavarian Sojourn

When I was younger, I always thought that happiness was what you get when you got to the end of your journey. School wasn’t a very happy time for me – I was bullied, especially in primary school, so I used to tell myself I would be happy when school was over. As I got older me and my Mum clashed terribly, and I told myself I would be happy when I left home.

What I forgot to do was look around me, and live in the moment, rather than looking to the future for my happiness. As I have got older though, I have realised of course, that happiness is all around us, in the everyday, and especially in the simple things. As I sit and watch Sophie play and run and laugh I couldn’t be happier – and how amazing would it be to be so carefree, totally living in the here and now.

So that is my aim from now on. To stop and look at all the simple things around me, to appreciate every second. It can be so easy to get caught up in looking forward that we forget that life is a journey, and even though we may never get to our destination, as long as we are have fun along the way, does it really matter?

So for me happiness is making the most of what you have, rather than dreaming about what you haven’t.

How about you?

Keftede Kebabs

So, the world cup is over for another four years, but sports fans needn’t worry as the Commonwealth Games are just around the corner, and as I am sure you know they are being hosted in Scotland this year.

The Commonwealth Games

In 1940 the first Commonwealth Games were held in Canada, where just 11 countries took part, sending around 400 athletes in total. Over the years the Commonwealth Games have grown and this year over 70 countries are expected to compete, comprising of over 4000 athletes taking part in almost 300 events.

To celebrate the games this year Betfair challenged me to come up with a recipe from one of the competing countries. I chose Cyprus and used a traditional recipe for keftedes (fried pork meatballs). Traditionally these meatballs would be deep-fried and served as part of a meze, however, by shallow frying them in fry light, I have made them healthier and added them to kebabs to make a filling, healthy meal for the whole family.

Keftede Kebabs

Keftede Kebabs

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 500g lean pork mince
  • 1 medium potato, grated and patted dry
  • 1 egg
  • 1 medium onion – grated
  • 2 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • small handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper, to taste

To serve

  • pitta bread
  • lettuce
  • onion
  • cucumber
  • tomatoes
  • tzatziki

Method

  1. Mix all the ingredients for the meatballs together and season well. Form into small balls, then flatten into patties. There is no need to chill the meatballs.
  2. Spray a non stick frying pan with fry light and cook the patties for a few minutes on each side, until cooked through. You may need to do this is batches, so keep the cooked patties in a warm oven until you are ready to serve.
  3. Lightly toast the pitta bread on both sides and then fill with the salad and meatballs.
  4. Serve with a good dollop of tzatziki

 Disclosure - I was sent a food shopping voucher to cover my ingredients

Sophie makes pizza

As all toddlers, Sophie loves to help out in the kitchen, and there isn’t a much better dinner for kids to get involved with making than pizza. I used a really basic dough mix, done in my bread maker. For the tomato sauce I added garlic powder and oregano to passata and then let her have fun with a load of different toppings. We had sweetcorn, mushrooms, pineapple, pepperoni and of course lots of cheese!

Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza Sophie makes pizza

She loved the results even more so because she had helped prepare it, and couldn’t wait to tell daddy (who was late home from work) that she had made her own dinner. She went to bed a very content (and full) little girl. She talked about making her own pizza all weekend, so we have promised to do it again sometime this week.

Sophie makes pizza

Banana and chocolate picnic loaf

It’s always nice to have a semi healthy homemade sweet treat to take on a picnic. Recently, myself and a few friends all got together at Sherwood Pines after school. Sarah bought along a camping stove and the kids had hotdogs for tea – I was of course tasked with bringing dessert, and this banana and chocolate picnic loaf was perfect – able to feed lots of hungry mouths and easy to transport in this hot weather. It was also easy to cut at home beforehand, to save messing around once we got there. The kids loved it and it gave them plenty of energy to run around and play!

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Banana and Chocolate Picnic Loaf

babana and chocolate picnic loafBanana loaves are a great way of using up left over bananas, the blacker the better for this recipe! Bananas can also be frozen, so there’s no need to throw them away if you aren’t ready to use them there and then – you can even add them to smoothies or milkshakes straight from the freezer!

Ingredients

  • 225g self raising flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 100g butter, at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 150g milk chocolate chunks – plus extra chocolate for decorating

Method

  1. Grease a loaf tin and preheat your oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Add all the ingredients, apart from the chocolate chunks into a bowl and whisk until fully combined, then fold in the chocolate chunks.
  3. Pour the mixture into your loaf tin and bake in the preheated oven for around 50 mins – when a skewer inserted comes out clean, the loaf is ready.
  4. Turn the loaf out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool.
  5. Melt your remaining chocolate and either use an icing bag, or just drizzle the melted chocolate over the top – you can also add some dried banana chips for extra decoration if you like.
  6. When the chocolate is cooled, slice your loaf and serve.

Mondays Parenting Pin it Party week 61

And its here again, my turn to host the wonderful Parenting Pin it Party! Pull up a chair, grab a cuppa and a biscuit and get all your parenting posts linked up, then relax and read some amazing posts from bloggers old and new alike!

Last week saw the lovely Carolin from Mummy Alarm hosting the party for the first time – and yet again there were a great number of entries. I chose the following 2 posts as my favourites from the last week.

parenting pin it partyI loved these leaf creatures from over at Dabbling Momma – so cute and great for any age, it can easily be made into a full days activity over the upcoming summer holidays by going out and collecting your leaves and then coming home to make your pictures (who can guess what I will be up to?)

Parenting pin it party

I really loved the sentiment of the following post from The Daily Rythms of Life – it really rang true to me, that sometimes (read often) there are more important things than jobs to be done – our kids will one day fly the nest and make their own lives, but our housework will still be here then. Its important that we make the most of every second, and this post really made me stop and think what I could do differently.

New to the Pin it Party?

We are pretty laid back around here, but we would love it if you could follow a few simple guidelines.

Have a read through some of the other entries, its a great way of finding new blogs to read. If you could follow the hosts of the party on Pinterest, that would also be much appreciated and feel free to grab the badge, to let others know you have taken part.

All you need is love and cake

So what are you waiting for? I can’t wait to read what you have all been up to lately!