I have shared previously how we do our meal planning. To be honest this is one area we saved the most money over the course of a month. We set a budget of approximately £120 per week, which may seem a lot but trust me when it comes to being ‘free from’ it is not come cheap! We also make most of our meals from scratch, because my hubby is allergic to MSG. You would be amazed at how many foods contain it in some form or another.
Now ordinarily a pre-child Valentine’s Day would have been dinner out with candles, fizz and a huge bouquet of red roses. Once parenthood hits you may get the odd date night out if it happens to fall near the weekend, otherwise you pretty much have to make do at home. All too often that means the night for romance gets shelved until a later date …
As a ‘fixer’ I am the first one making action plans in a crisis and whilst that is a gift in and of itself, it can also be a bit of a curse. Ultimately it leaves me feeling drained, empty and not in a good way. I am so busy fixing for everyone else that I forget myself
I am the weirdo who likes to have everything laid out ready over Christmas. I even design a Christmas menu and print it out, and this year it even got laminated! I know, it’s quite sad sounding but I absolutely love doing it. And secretly I think everyone else likes it too.
So here is our Christmas Day menu, you may find inspiration from it or not, you may just be nosey (like me) and want to see what we will be eating, regardless enjoy!
Many moons ago my Mum gave me the Delia Smith Complete Cookery Course. Mainly because she was fed up with me pinching her copy! Regardless the book contains many recipes I have tried and loved for over two decades now. Gosh that’s weird to write! As I was flicking through I came across the recipe for the loveliest rich Christmas cake, and I have been making it ever since!
Our tree has a basic theme of green tree with gold and red baubles on it. Simple, with 2 sets of lights and some gold/silver bushy tinsel wrapping the centre of the tree for extra sparkle. For Phil we could leave it there and he would be happy. However we have one simple Christmas tradition that has caused our tree to become the most spectacular cacophony of ornaments, leaving the theme of green, red and gold somewhat engulfed!
I make these every year and when I don’t the moaning can be heard right through until February! You may shy away from making them because they are a faff or you just don’t know what to put in them. But homemade hampers are probably the best smorgasbord gift you can give.
When Phil and I first started seeing each other, child free dates were a total luxury as we started out with 4 kids between us. After we got married we wanted to keep date nights going, even if it was just once a month, thankfully my folks were on board and we managed to stick to for the last 7 years together. Phil is a muso if I haven’t mentioned it before, and so I wanted out December date night to be really special for both of us. I booked tickets to see Handel’s Messiah at the Birmingham Symphony hall and we decided to make our Christmas date night in Birmingham that extra bit spectacular by throwing in dinner and a walk around the German market before the performance too. My Mum was having the children over night to spoil them a little too.