Super speedy Key Lime Pie and Father’s Day fragility.

A late-ish night at a brilliant party on Saturday left me feeling a little ‘tired’ on Sunday. I can only attribute my headache on waking to the loud music we danced to with such skill and vigour. It was a true treat to not be woken at 6 with a request to replace the hair…

The perils of cat ownership.

The house is alarmingly quiet this morning with the little badgers being ‘on holiday’ at Nanny and Papa’s for a full weekend; in part to accommodate our party-going tonight and in part because it’s so much more fun being spoiled rotten there, than being harried by a tiresome mother at home. It has been rather…

French escapades: 5 brilliant things to do in Picardy.

After a lovely week in France, I have been boring anyone who will listen with a litany of Picardy’s virtues. For anyone else thinking of visiting (and it’s lovely, you really should) I’ve compiled a list of brilliant things to do with kids.

Camping for the clueless: my 5 top tips for beginners.

My husband has been promising our firstborn a camping trip for several years. Last summer, in a bid to lend credibility to his promises we bought a tent, but busy lives, disappointing weather – and perhaps a faint undercurrent of reluctance – meant it has lain dormant. Until this last gloriously sunny Bank holiday weekend……

Souped Up: soup recipes for a healthy lunch.

After an Easter heavy on Mini Eggs, I am trying to eat more healthily. As is often the case when I embark upon one of these fads, soup is featuring heavily and here I share some of my favourite, easiest recipes.

Lunchbox friction. And dairy-free banana chocolate biscuits.

About to tackle the second week back at school and the Easter holidays seem like a distant memory, entangled as we are, once more, with Biff and Chip and PE kits and morning rush hours and after-school clubs and snack boxes. Packed lunches are a somewhat contentious issue in our house. The junior takes one…

Podcast obsession

I am mad on podcasts. My coolest friend introduced me to them a couple of years ago and I am totally obsessed with them. She is obvs much cooler than me now as a journalist living in Dublin; she goes to gigs on school nights and jets round the world at weekends, whilst I’m in…

Brilliant beauty buys.

The response I got from my post about beauty in the Aldi aisles confirmed that I am not alone in my love of a cosmetic bargain. I must reiterate here, that I am no glamorous minx, and on the surface, nobody you’d look to for advice in this field, but I DO love a good…

Fat Rascals. (A treat, not an insult.)

Five days into the school holiday – of which four were the long weekend, where double parental supervision was applied – and we have worked through pretty much everything in the programme of activities I suggested, and now we’re lapping ourselves. It seems hopeful that the dismal drizzle and frosty temperatures may improve as the…

11 steps to a brilliant night’s sleep.

I seem to have been somewhere on the continuum between moderately fatigued and totally exhausted since my firstborn came onto the scene in early 2009. Of course, nobody with a small baby can realistically expect to have a decent amount of sleep, but somehow, even though my children reliably make it through the night without…

Lemon cake and poor fine motor skills.

The Easter weekend was a busy one for us. As is my wont in the school holidays, I was stricken with the sort of horrible germs that left me with a banging head, throbbing ears, chesty cough and a husky voice. “Like Mariella Frostrup?” I asked, hopefully. “More Les Dawson,” my husband confirmed. There was…

Beauty in the Aldi aisles.

I really hate food shopping. The crush in the aisles. The stress of the checkout. The godawful unpacking once home. It truly is one of my least favourite things to do. I do much of my shopping in Aldi these days, and I don’t think this helps any of the problems aforementioned. Our town offers…

Staying sane in the hols.

School here has just broken up for Easter. I think parental emotions were mixed. Some seemed merely relieved to be avoiding the tyranny of 8:55 registration and appropriate packed lunches for two weeks, others focused on the 24/7 x 2 nature of the upcoming interaction with their progeny. Holidays without plans can  be hard-going. I…