Wednesday, January 29, 2014


I am still feeling a bit yuk with this virus and it has really sapped my energy.  I find myself just sitting around, not even tried to do any crochet or anything else.  I hope this goes away soon as I'm fed up with it now and i want to get back to normal instead of everything feeling like its too much effort.  One advantage was getting on the scales to find another 3 lbs gone this week though.

My poorly little girl had to be put to sleep yesterday.  She had a large tumour and the vet said it would be the kindest thing to do at this point.  I didn't want her to suffer any pain but its always upsetting to lose a pet isn't  it. 

I made a bit more effort with dinner for today.  I had some leftover turkey meat in the freezer and defrosted it along with chopping up a few new potatoes and carrots that were lingering in the veg basket along with a couple of onions and some chickpeas and tinned sweet corn.  I added all this to a jar of rogan josh sauce and cooked it through in the microwave.  OH enjoyed it with some rice  and had two portions but my taste buds are still affected and all I can say is it was filling.  Yesterday I did make Jamie Oliver's stove top rice pudding as that's what we both fancied, real comfort food with a blob of strawberry jam.  I finished it off cold for breakfast this morning. If you have never made it here's the recipe.

12oz pudding rice
2 tbsp caster sugar
Few drops vanilla essence
1.2 litres milk (I use long life as its creamier)

Use a large lidded pan and bring it all to a simmer on the stove.  Stir occasionally and it takes approx 25 mins to cook.  Nice and easy.

Terri X

Saturday, January 25, 2014

I've got the lurgy!

This past week I have been trying to fight off the effects of a horrible virus which has put me through bad throat, coughing, bladder infection, aches and pains, awful headaches, sickness, hot and cold sweats and now I am full of cold so I am feeling a bit fed up.  OH has now gone down with it too and is staying in bed whilst I have tried to potter about - typical man.
Still enough moaning ...

The tulips were a treat I brought for myself at the start of the week and they certainly brighten up my kitchen.
I did try to make Artisan bread, a no knead recipe that I took from Attic24 blog but I was disappointed because I tried a brown loaf first and look..

It came out so flat but I will still use it up with some soup.  Then I followed the recipe exactly using strong white flour but look...

It turned out just as flat!  
I did make another good homity pie for OH but overdid the garlic a bit and he stunk for days!  I wouldn't have thought he would get the lurgy after that!

I also did my weigh in on Wednesday but I only lost a pound, still it's a loss.
It was also my Birthday this week and although I didn't feel well my friend drove me to Inverness for a couple of hours and I spent a £50 M&S voucher my mum sent me, putting it towards a lovely bright red per una coat.  I also treated myself to these...

I got them in the sale for £9.99 so I was really pleased, love a bit of glitz.
That's about it for this past weeks roundup except one of my girls is poorly too

So we are just all going to snuggle up until it all passes.
Terri X

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Books & Magazines

I used to be addicted to buying magazines before I adopted the frugal life.  I brought every home design mag on the market every month for inspiration as I used to sell new homes and would often have input with interior designers for the show homes and have to advise purchasers when they had to make choices for their new homes.  When I moved here I had basketfuls of magazines so I have finally gone through them all and taken out all the pages that inspire me and condensed them into folders.  Nowadays getting a new magazine is a real treat and as its my Birthday this week I have treated myself to one and a few new books.

This caught my eye as it came with all this wool

The needles and crochet hook were included too and I can't wait to have a go at a couple of projects inside

Look at this lovely bird, definitely going to try and make this 
I like this owl and might make him for a pressie too.
On someone's blog I've read lately, can't remember whose, they mentioned that they had found this book at The Works for £5.99. 
It has been on my wish list on Amazon for ages but was £12.99 so I was thrilled when I managed to find it for such a good price.  It's such a beautiful book
What a clever idea for using wallpaper on stairs
Love this bedrooms patchwork wall
Pink is a favourite colour of mine, mixed with florals I just love it!
Then I found a lovely book at the charity shop for the grand sum of 50p

I think I have read all of her books so I am looking forward to reading about her life.

I also treated myself to this book as I want to teach myself how to do hexagons and this book has lots of instructions and some easy projects to try.  I have the materials I was given for Christmas to use.
So I now have a pile of things to read and look at and I am going now to read my friends magazine that she kindly lent me today.

Happy Reading!
Terri X

Struie Hill

It was very foggy when we awoke on Saturday morning but we set off to go the 35 miles to Lidl and Morrisons.  Our journey takes us over Struie Hill.  This route through the mountains saves us approx 14 miles instead of going via the main road towards Inverness.

And we usually stop to see the fabulous view at this pull-in

These pics don't do it justice but it is nicknamed Millionaires View and you can see for miles on a clear day.
All the brown patches of heather turn purple in July - Sept

In the summer the coaches always stop here for people to take photos

This plaque says the Struie is 1082ft  and 660ft above sea level.

Today we drove through the fog up into lovely sunshine so I took these pics to show you the same

It was strange to be looking down upon the fog and it was a pity we had to go back down into it as I enjoyed the sun on my face for a while. In the end it didn't lift all day.

Terri X

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Well I am very pleased with myself today as I have now lost the half stone that I put on at Christmas.  In fact I lost 4lbs in total this week and that was a surprise for me because....confession time now.... I cheated on Saturday when we were out!  We stopped at a nice service station on the way back home from our trip to Inverness and I was tired after traipsing around and my back felt like it was about to give out so I needed to sit down and eat something.  To save me cooking later we both had a main course only.  I had chicken curry and chips and have to say it was delicious!  OH had haddock and chips which he thoroughly enjoyed too.  We finished off with a nice mug of tea each and I felt much better for it.  I think it keeps your metabolism going to shake it up sometimes.
I plan to do a Lidl shop tomorrow as I need to stock up some fruit and veg.  I made some veg pasta sauce in the week and mixed the last of it into my cheesy rice dish, adding a couple of chopped quorn sausages and that has been my dinner for the last two days.  I saw on the news that quorn sales have risen by 20% since the horsemeat scandal.  I only buy the sausages and the mince to make a chilli as its only me that will eat it because OH finds it tasteless.
I made a nice pastry less quiche in the week using a packet of dried pasta with broccoli and cheese, four beaten eggs and a tub of low fat cottage cheese.  Even ate some of this for breakfast to make a change from boiled eggs.
This next week I must try and have a couple more meat meals to mix things up and hopefully give me a loss next weigh-in although I expect to settle down to a 1- 2 lb loss and that will be fine because its better to lose it gradually as more likely to keep it off.

Terri X

Monday, January 13, 2014

Birds of a feather flock together

Remember some of the material I received for Christmas, well I framed some of it and put it up on the wall.

I am really pleased with how it looks and of course one thing leads to another and I ended up looking around for things to continue the birdie theme

Do chickens belong but there is a bird amongst the flowers

And finally this little owl is on my jug of flowers on the mantelpiece

Terri X

A Lovely Surprise!

The postman came today with a surprise parcel for me.  So exciting to receive something you don't expect and look what was inside

So many things!  A lovely scented candle, notebook and pencil, a patchwork handbag to make, a cross stitch kit, two lovely books to read, New Zealand breakfast tea and biscuits and chocolate bars, a lovely calendar, a little Christmas ornament, more sweets, some scenic serviettes and two lovely sachets of pasta!  

Inside was also a lovely note from a new friend in blog land and all the way from New Zealand.  I am very touched and overwhelmed that someone would like my blog and would do this for me.
Thank you Margaret and your gift will fill many hours for me whilst I am snuggled in front of the stove.

Terri X

Sunday, January 12, 2014


                                                             This was the sky at 8am

We were travelling down to Inverness and the roads were a bit icy after a very cold night.

By 8.30am we were passing the Dornock Firth and it was starting to get light.

By 9am we were passing the Moray Firth.  

and by 9.20am we were nearing Inverness and the sun was rising - no red, just a crisp, cold day.
BUT ....
I decided to continue with the red theme so...

I coloured my hair.
I looked around my home for a couple of red things to show you

This storage pouffe was originally leather look fabric but i recovered it with red spot oilcloth.

Teddy is holding a little red heart I knitted for him and he's sitting next to a tealight holder
that was given to me and I painted and framed a postcard sent by my son when he was a little boy.

 I like Red

Terri X

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Linking in with FrugalinBucks blog, today is the day we weigh in and publish our losses or maybe even our gains!
I thought I would show you a typical diet day for me.

  Breakfast today was two boiled eggs and 2oz wholemeal bread, toasted and scraped with marmite.  I had a cup of tea and mid morning a cup of coffee.

Lunch was a big bowl of homemade Tuscan bean soup.

1 onion, chopped 
Clove garlic, chopped
3 med carrots, cubed
4 med potatoes, cubed
4oz cabbage, shredded
4 oz peas
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tin cannelloni beans, rinsed
2 veg stock cubes
2 pints water
Fry light
Large pinch mixed herbs

Using fry light, soften onion then add garlic and fry for another minute.
Add the rest of the vegetables along with the tomatoes and stock.
Add a large pinch of mixed herbs and bring to the boil and put lid on to simmer for approx 25 mins until veg has softened.
Add the cannelloni beans and simmer for another couple of mins, then serve.

Dinner was SW chips made by slicing potatoes and spraying baking tray with fry light.  Spray potatoes and put straight in oven about 200 C for approx 25 mins until brown.  I also put in 2 quorn sausages and had half a tin of baked beans and a fried egg, again done with fry light.
Pudding was a banana with some fat free natural yogurt (didn't take a pic of it because I ate it before I remembered!)
In the evening I had my treat with a cup of tea

Yep!  The cream eggs are already in the shops!
As you can see I certainly don't starve and I am very happy to report a 4 lb weight loss this week. :-)

Terri X

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The start of a new year

I looked forward to a new year starting, 2014 sounds much better than 2013.  I'm probably a bit odd but I much prefer the even numbers, it makes me feel more optimistic.  I look forward to writing down lists of things I want to do throughout the year, starting afresh with goals to aim for.    
I always make the same New Year resolution and like lots of others I aim to lose weight.  I've been saying this for the last 20 years so I ought to be skinny by now!  Anyway I ate whatever I wanted over the festive period (lots of chocolate!) and put on half a stone which might sound a lot to some but actually was really good for me because I only have to sniff a bit of cake and can put on a pound!  

I started on the 2nd and will be joining in with Frugal in Bucks blog and weigh-in-Wednesdays.  I have been getting some inspiration from the recipes in this months SW magazine and plan to do their macaroni cheese recipe this week but having done this diet a few times I know I can eat plenty without having to spend out on any extra foodstuff just for me.
I always suffer physically when I start to diet, usually I get a lot of backache but at the moment it's my knees that are really sore and tender making going up stairs difficult and walking hurt.  Hopefully it will ease as my body adjusts, see I told you I was a bit odd!

Today is another damp day but as its suppose to be the best day of the weekend being a respite from the wind and rain, we popped out to drive to the charity shop I have previously blogged about. I had a box and two bagfuls of stuff to donate as I am still trying to de-clutter.  I do find it hard not to buy anything from a charity shop but I only picked up this book today

It is full of lovely pictures that I hope will inspire me as I really am not very confident with sewing although I have made a few things like cushions and the quilted hanging over my bed but I just tend to throw it together instead of doing it properly.  I was just the same when I went to a patchwork class, doing things by eye instead of measuring and wanting to do my own thing like pink chickens!  The teacher,who became a friend, called me a rebel but was always amazed how well the things I made turned out. One of my aims this year is to learn how to make a patchwork quilt, i do so admire the ones that i see on other clever ladies blogs and I think my special word for this year has to be PATIENCE!
We also stopped off at the storehouse and had brunch, two perfectly poached eggs on toast with tomatoes and mushrooms for me and a beef and fried onion sandwich plus scone and butter for OH.  It was a nice treat and tonight I plan to do jacket potatoes with baked beans and cheese.  Simple and filling but a good diet day.

Terri X