Sunday, 24 July 2016

Reality behind the photos

Mr Mc&W and I are sat with a huge glass of red wine looking at our photos of today and laughing. If we had posted them on Facebook our friends would have thought we had the perfect day out, but that was not the case......

We had decided to visit Peterbrough for the day, we were rather excited at the thought of a cathedral, I was very excited about lunch out and then there was a steam railway.

On arrival, in fact on trying to enter the multi-storey car park we remembered the roof box was still attached to the car and had to preform a rather dodgy u turn in order to prevent being wedged under the barrier. We then found a rather interesting looking outdoor car park, complete with a fing and jeffing pensioner who could not work the NCP app.

The cathedral was beautiful and we made the decision we would come back to admire it's full beauty later, this proved to be a mistake. Off we went to find the steam trains.... 

We walk under a rather old and spectacular iron bridge, what we had not accounted for was an express train going over said iron bridge when we were underneath. I think we all nearly wet ourselves with fright, the boys hands on their ears and eyes on stalks, with Daddy and Mummy trying to hide our hysterical laughing as it was so funny (sorry kids we did jump as much I promise) ZAP however managed to sleep through this.

On arriving at said railway they had run out of family tickets in the office and were not sure if we could pay by card in the train. We did a mad frantic dash to the loos as the train was due in less than two mins, ten mins later the boys were demanding to know where the train was. The beautiful steam train arrived but no one could tell us if cards could be taken, Mr MC&W had a little chat wondering if anyone had been thrown off a steam train for not having a ticket. 

We walked around looking lost with the buggy, hoping a member of staff would take pity and help us get onto the train. This did not happen so we had the rather heart stopping moment of lifting the buggy on to the train, over what seemed like a grand canyon of a drop. We all sat down ready for the steam train to depart, but the train was just not moving and the boys were getting increasingly bored and excitement levels were fast dropping. We found out some local kids had emptied the water tower and it would be a while before the train could proceed on her journey. By this point we had one crying baby and two very bored children, OB in fact was starting to get very restless and we knew he was not coping with the whole situation, we did not want a meltdown. To top it off we still no idea if we could pay for our tickets so we took the hard decision to get off. Our pictures show a train and a happy family on the train, it's just we did not do the actual journey.

ATM planning our trip with his new best friend the map. This map now goes everywhere we do.

Instead we told the boys they could go in the car ride which they had seen earlier, they were more excited about than the train. We were even told we were the best parents ever!!!. Then we went to poundland and got a whole stack of garden toys.

As mentioned earlier I was rather excited about having lunch out. But we had to avoid the center as mummy had not brought spare clothes and a towel for a visit to a City, silly mummy as she dragged a screaming ATM away form the fountains. Apparently I should have known that there would be water play in the city and be ready for it. Bad Mummy Bad Mummy.

Lunch was a disaster, the boys are fussy eaters and we did not want a full on main meal. We read the menus of about five million places. We even wondered into macdonalds much to the boys delight but the queue was out of the door we turned right around and continued our menu tour of the center.

We finally had lunch at pret and it was lovely really lovely, Mr MC&W and I even shared a bag of kale chips and so romantic checked no green left I am sure you can guess where.

A trip to waitrose later with OB ramming a gentleman trolley saying its packman mummy finished the day.

On arrival home we unpacked the garden toys and had a wonderful time playing frisbee and running around and now with the children asleep we have a huge glass of wine and laughing at the photos and the image we could have shown the world.

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Meal Plan Saturday 9th July 2016

It's a rather busy week coming up and Mr MC&W is working from home. Meaning a bit more thought has had to go into the meals this week.

Saturday - a huge plate of salad containing avocado, crispy bacon, blue cheese, loads of salad leaves and tomatoes with a sprinkling of honey and mustard dressing. It was meant to have roasted new potatoes, but I ran out of time,  so used the emergency crouton pack.... Every busy house needs one. The boys had the always popular fish and chips with peas.

Sunday - roast chicken breast, roast potatoes and fine green beans for the boys. We had chicken breast stuffed with blue cheese left overs from last night it was then roasted on a bed of courgettes, red onions, mushrooms and tomatoes served with roast potatoes and spinach.

Monday - pulled pork burgers with chips for us all. Not sure what the boys will make of this but it's worth a try.

Tuesday - Fish and rice for the boys this will be oven roasted cod with plain rice and peas/sweet corn on the side. We will be having a cheats meal of Mediterranean rice and cook in the bag fish, served with fine green beans.

Wednesday - Tuna Pasta bake for everyone with loads of veggies

Thursday - the boys are having mash , sausages and beans. We are having chicken Kiev with new potatoes and green veg

Friday - mini meatballs for the boys and normal sized meatballs for is. An easy to prepare meal that can be put in the oven.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Rescuing the Jasmine

It's proven to be very hard to keep up with the garden, three children and even harder to write about it. But I am rather determined to change this.

Last year sadly Mr MC&W father passed away, in his memory we all chose to plant a Jasmine in our gardens, his mum, brother and ourselves. With everything we had going on our poor Jasmine had become rather neglected.

Today I managed to get ZAP happily on a picnic blanket and the boys charging round on the trampoline. This gave me some time to tackle the area around the Jasmine. 

As you can see it was really quite a mess, surrounded by weeds and had barely any light getting to it. It took a lot of work to dig and pull out the weeds and rather too many nettle stings up my arms. 

When it came to getting close to the Jasmine I decided it better to use a small hand trowel as I did not want to disturbed the roots as the poor plant has had a tough old time already.

I also cut quite a bit of my beautiful rambling rector back to allow more sunshine to get in from above.

I need to get some manure dug into the soil as you can see my footprints became a real feature of the area. Our soil is thick clay and every area of the garden needs serious attention to improve the soil. I am looking around for the best soil improvers.

As you can see from the photos the top looks OK and the bottom there are real signs of growth but the middle looks very woody and to be honest a little dead. 

I shall report if we have managed to get the Jasmine a little healthier. Though the flowers are beautiful and smell wonder already.


Monday, 4 July 2016

Meal Plan Saturday 2nd July 2016

Not sure where the time has gone this week and what has not helped has been a total lack of inspiration for meals. I have decided that I am going to blame this weather as I do not want winter food but it's not summer weather.

Saturday - Family favourite Spag Bol

Sunday - Gammon with honey and mustard served with roast potatoes, carrots, broccoli and spinach 

Monday - Jacket Potato with ham and cheese

Tuesday - Chicken Goujons with mash, broccoli and baked beans

Wednesday - Homemade pizza with salad and maybe some cheeky chips 

Thursday - Jo Pratt Madhouse - Gnocchi with broccoli and mushrooms

Friday - Tortellini with homemade tomato sauce 

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Meal Plan Saturday 25th June 2016

This weeks meal plan should be full of summer meals but it's just not feeling that way yet.

ZAP does not like anything other than carrot so far which has been great fun. I think I am going to go onto foods that are a bit more exciting both the boys hated just butternut squash etc. I also remembered just how much I hate weaning. I have the Ella's kitchen book which is just lovely and a baby lead weaning book so hoping they may help me. As you can see I have not added his meals this week, it needs some more planning and maybe it's own blog!!! 

Saturday- A Waitrose curry ready meal. Boys are having pizza and salad.

Sunday -Mr MC&W and I are having a treat we love Charlie Bingham ready meals so it's a pie with ready made mash and veggies. Plus a bottle of our favourite wine. The boys are having fish and chips with peas.

Monday - Jo Pratts Madhouse Carbonara made with mascarpone.

Tuesday - Fish in sauce with rice and veggies. This will be a simple tomato based sauce.

Wednesday - I have a few Ainsley Harriet recipe books and he has a lovely smoked bacon, creamed tomatoes and peas with pasta meal.

Thursday- Crispy chicken, mashed potatoes with broccoli 

Friday - Cheesy nachos treat with lots of chicken and avocado and cheese and anything else I can throw at it.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Meal Plan Saturday 18th June 2016

The weeks are just flying by at the moment. Last weeks meal plan went ok, the cheesy broccoli, ham and pasta bake was great even though I changed the meal massively from that on BBC Good Food. I adored the Pea Pakoras the boys not so much,  we will give them another go. The toad in the hole was for Mr and Mrs MC&W tasty and for once I cooked it well, boys loved the Yorkshire puddings but sausages are still not going down to well.

This week is very busy so we are having a few quick and easy or throw it in the oven and leave to cook meals.

We also have baby ZAP beginning to wean so putting his first few tastes on the meal plan as well. Busy times ahead. I am using as I did with both the boys Annabel Karmels ideas to start with and then doing a combination of baby lead weaning. This dual way worked well with both OEP and ATM. This week it's all about a few first tastes as he has had a few days on baby rice now and it's time to move on a little. I will also be starting to build up freezer once the weaning takes off a little more. 

Saturday - Peri Peri chicken with chips and salad for Mr & Mrs MC&W. The boys will have chicken nuggets, chips and salad

Sunday - Out to Mr MC&W brothers house for a family BBQ to celebrate a couple of birthdays.

ZAP - Baby rice with a little apple 

Monday - Oven baked Thai chicken from BBC Good Good.

Oven Baked Thai Chicken and Rice

ZAP will be having creamed carrot.

Tuesday - Tuna Pasta bake for Mr MC&W and myself the boys will have cheesy pasta with veggies.

ZAP will be trying butternut squash

Wednesday - Jacket Potatoes with beans and cheese and salad

ZAP - Sweet Potato

Thursday - Brought in shop brought fresh pasta with a homemade tomato sauce

ZAP - Baby rice with a little pear

Friday - always a family favourite ham, egg and chips

ZAP - Parsnip

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Type 1 Diabetes A Parents Feelings

We have had type 1 in our lives for 2 years and these years have been filled with many emotions and feelings, but the main ones have been confusion and worry.

I shall clarify why these two words came to mind, let's start with confusion. This happened as soon as OB was diagnosed. It was the numbers people kept telling us, blood sugars readings, ketone readings, insulin dosages for long and short acting, working out food ratios. The main question we asked over and over again was "is that number good?" We simply had no idea what these numbers actually meant, they had no context.

Then came leaving hospital. This is your meter to test bloods and remember to change the cartridge in the clicker and order more test strips. Here is your insulin long and short acting, can you remember how to change the cartridge and always check your giving the right one. Remember to order more insulin and keep it cold. Ketone meter you will need this if he is sick. You need a sharps bin, speak with your local council. Here is your orange injection we hope you do not need this but if you do speak with 999. As parents our heads were spinning with information. Despite having a nurse on call 24 hours a day, we were a tad concerned if we could keep our little boy alive for the next 48 hours. We left confused and worried.

Next is carb counting yes carb counting. Scales were purchased and the weighing of food began, my phone calculator has been very useful. It was yet more numbers, reading packaging, finding packaging from the bin, looking up intimation online, swearing at packages that have nothing on them, staring at the carbs and Cals book for a miracle answer of a meal you have made and really not sure how to calculate the number of carbs. Finding out bread sends him sky high and takes forever to bring him down. I am now pretty good at looking at food and being able to judge the amount of insulin needed, but we are often still confused about food in general.

Now two years later we have nailed understanding all he numbers both good and bad. We have sharps bins and repeat prescriptions are sorted, though it did take a lot of phone calls.

The confusion now is the fact type 1 does not have a rule book. We could give OB the exact same meal two evenings in a row, when has the same blood sugar reading and it would lead to a different blood sugar results. These are some of the factors we are thinking about when considering his insulin.... is it hot or cold, is he stressed by something, is he coming down with a virus, is he growing, is he going out to play. Everything changes the levels you get. The dawn bloody rise, meaning his levels rise from around 5am not everyday either now that would be consistent. This means a whole load of extra insulin, so that the meter does not question our ability to manage his blood sugar. We swear it tells us off sometimes. They grow and have growth hormones you increase levels then hypo them you decrease the next day and send them sky high. Yes you get it confusion rules.

The next one is worry, we get this a lot as we have to manage OB type 1, he has a sever speech and language disorder and ASD. When we get the insulin wrong it breaks our hearts, if we send him hyper or hypo it's a worry, one way or another he feels pants. How could we get it so wrong we ask ourselves over and over again. We re read the book, check the levels we gave him, what lessons can we learn? what did we miss?. We worry that we are causing him long term health complications by not getting his numbers right. We worry he will not wake in the morning. We fight with him in his sleep o check his levels and worry if we correct or not if he is high or if he is low how do we get food into him. Any slight problem health wise we question, we over examine, could it be a complication, have we caused this by not managing his type 1.

These are not easy emotions to live with 24 hours a day but that's type 1, the blood testing and injections are not fun but you know your helping your child, it's the emotions behind their readings that can be very hard to cope with. When they get admitted into hospital for a simple virus, everyone else has a day sick, we are rushed via ambulance to hospital. They try to get a cannula in when he is screaming and here comes the guilt and worry in a huge wave, you wake every hour as they test, you argue with nursing staff and who do not understand his condition but will be very sure your wrong. Welcome to the world of type 1 diabetes it's a roller coaster.
Despite all this our little boy is amazing he copes so well, he has an active, fun and laughter filled life. We as parents take the worry, we make sure he will never miss out on anything due to his type 1, even if that's the queens birthday celebration with a huge slice of cake. thumbnailsize