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  1. When a box of goodies from Old El Paso arrived Daddy Moo couldn't stop laughing! I actually hate spicy food and even some BBQ sauce brings me out in a hot sweat. But everything was labeled mild so I thought why not! When I prepare fajitas I usually cook the chicken (or turkey as this is always far cheaper) in red pesto instead of the spices that it comes with. We had a packet of roasted tomato and red pepper spice which you add to the chicken as its cooking – Daddy Moo also added peppers and onions to the pan. As soon as we opened the packet I knew the whole lot would be too spicy for me, the smell was already making my taste buds tingle so we added ¼ which was more than enough. We served this in the traditional fashion with lettuce, cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, peppers, coleslaw and chips wrapped in a tortilla. Yummy! Moo fell in love with the sweetcorn relish, which until he finished it he added to every meal! I have bough another but not told him yet! I mean sweetcorn relish with shepherd's pie is just odd!

    ol el paso

    Not one to be wasteful we have used the rest of the roasted tomato and red pepper spices. I've added them to slow cooking chicken and pork to thicken up and add some flavour to a carton of passata. I've also sprinkled them on part boiled potatoes before adding them to the oven – delicious alternative for traditional roast potatoes and wedges.

    We were also sent a packet of chilli spices and some taco shells. Using the slow cooker I made the chilli following the instructions on the packet just that mine then simmered for a few hours! Whilst I ate cheese on toast the moo's enjoyed these delicious chilli filled tacos which were topped with cheese! Apparently they were yummy!   

    chilli tacos

    I would definitely buy the taco shells again and maybe make more of a Bolognese style filling. I must admit the children throughly enjoyed adding a bit of spice to their dinner time! 

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  2. Olive and I went on a little adventure to London to a Crafting event with DryNites® . We left a grumpy M&M and Daddy Moo half asleep and cursing us at Bournemouth train station and boarded the 7:22 to Waterloo in a buzz of excitement. Being 3 everything is still in the super excitement phase “look mummy a frozen field” “look mummy a station”. She was less impressed when we arrived at Waterloo and she saw the London Eye – made me chuckle as I remembered a very green Moo aged 6 sitting in the middle of the pod wishing the eye to stop and nearly passing out when he saw how small the trains were from the top!


    When we arrived at Tea and Crafting a lovely little craft workshop above Camden Market we were greeted by the DryNites® Team and the lovely Tamara Melvin (finalist in The Great British Sewing Bee). 3 other bloggers and their children arrived and once we tore the children away from the fruit platter we set about with the tasks for the day.

    DryNites® Tamara

    Tamara Melvin 

    First job was to make a sun catcher. Olive choose a Christmas tree shape which she drew round herself and attempted to cut, I did end up cutting it out for her but I pushed my OCD aside and actually cut round the shape she drew so it was very lumpy bumpy but that's what makes it so beautiful! Olive and I then glued down coloured tissue paper popped the frame on top and Tamara laminated it for her. To say she was chuffed is a mini understatement! The tree is now hanging on our dinning room window and I'm pretty sure even after Christmas it will stay there.

    The second job was to use an old jumper to make a stocking. I had my reservations of how much “help” Olive was actually going to be!! I tend to keep her well clear of pins and the sewing machine. But she surprised me and I think the relaxed environment, the lovely helpful DryNites® Team and Tamara's expert guidance ensured we all had something to be proud of at the end!

    stocking making

    Pinning the pattern

    I literally let Olive do everything from drawing the snowman shapes to cutting them out, choosing the ribbons, bells and baubles and helping Amy from DryNites® to make a pompom. I did hand sew it all together and then Tamara machine sewed the stocking. It was actually really easy to make and definitely something I would try and replicate myself. Being an artist I know that Megan would really enjoy making her own personalised stocking and I'd never thought of sewing craft foam before. I can see the advantages no fraying! 

    stocking making olive

    What do we do now? Errr .. how do I know I'm only 3!

    pinning stockings

    Pinning her pattern

    baubles for stockings

    Which baubles shall I have? Hummm .... these Elsa stylee ones of course! 

    olive and mummy drynites

    Yes I'm wearing half a jumper round my neck .... 

    We had a lovely day and Olive is so proud of her stocking that she has already said she's not using her handmade sack that I made her years ago this Christmas Eve! Charming!  Thank you so much to the DryNites® Team and Tamara - if you have the chance to attend one of their Crafting events do it!!!  

    Photo credit - Issy Crocker