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Growing Cosmos from seed

While wondering around the garden centre in May I spotted a packet of Cosmos seeds, I had brought some Cosmos plants last year and fallen in love with them, but they were a little expensive. A thought hit me, try and grow my own, I grew some beautiful Dhailas last year, so why not give it a go.









I planted the seeds in some trays I had received my winter bedding plants in, using the cpmpost I had brought to plant the hanging baskets with. The poor seeds were really neglected, they were left out at night when it was cold (even a frost) and I kept forgetting to water them.

I was left with these awful leggy seedlings and a feeling of total failure, I potted them into larger pots to see if I could rescue the some of them.




The weather was warming up and I watered them everyday and they began to get stronger and stronger until they were ready to be planted out.

Then came the heatwave and they for some reason thrived. I watered them with some water from the washing up every week and they soon bega…
Recent posts

Meal Plan Friday 21st September 2018

We are not doing well on using bits up at the moment and wasting more than I would like to. This really annoys me so I need to try harder on this over the next while. 

We did not have the chicken korma melts as we treated ourselves to a pizza so that will be one to put back on the meal plan soon.

Friday - Fish with roasted med veg and new potatoes - this I will be honest, is all convenience food and need either cooking in the oven or microwave. The boys are having mains at school so will have a picnic tea

Saturday - Chicken burgers with wedges for us all

Sunday - slow cooker sausage casserole with mash and greens for us all

Monday - Spicy ratatouille with eggs and Parmesan from Gino Healthy Italian. The boys will have tomato soup and crusty bread.

Tuesday - Peri Peri Chicken Pilaf. The boys will have this but not as spicy.

Peri peri chicken pilaf

Wednesday - Paprika Pork in a pot, for us all with mash and green beans

Marys paprika pork in a pot

Thursday - Prawn and Coconut Laksa - This is one I…

Meal Plan Friday 14th September 2018

We seem to be flying through September and now we are back into some kind of routine life is getting a little easier for us all.

Meals again are early for the boys and simple, they are starving and if not fed too soon would just fill themselves up on rubbish.

Friday - Fish and chips for the boys (waffles for the eldest) and Scampi and Chips for myself and Mr MC&W

Saturday - Ham Hock Burgers for us all

Ham hock burgers

Sunday - Melting Mushroom wellingtons for Mr MC&W and I. The boys will have jackets, sausages and veggies

Melty mushroom wellingtons

Monday - Chicken Korma Melts for us all

Chicken korma melts

Tuesday - Pasta with mozzarella, mint and fresh tomatoes for us all

Pasta with mozzarella mint and fresh tomato sauce

Wednesday - Shepard's Pie Jackets for us all

Shepherds pie jackets

Thursday - Winter Nicoise Salad 

Winter tuna nioise





GYO update - Summer 2018

I thought it was about time I gave you all an update on our little GYO adventure. This is our first time trying things out and we have had some real success and some total disasters.

Courgettes, at first were a massive success, I only had one plant producing and I ended up having to give some away. They are now not producing so well and seeming to go rotten at the tip which is very sad to see. Though the family were getting a little bored of courgette going into every meal.





I was convinced these sweetcorn had failed as we only had two, so the boys and I pulled it up. We had a look and were gutted because it had worked and we pulled it too early.



We have had many tomatoes from the two plants I got from the garden centre. These at first did not ripen and now we have had lots, not a glut but I have not had to buy them in around two months which is amazing.




The beetroot and carrots we have been pulling up and using in many dishes and have been brilliant, again not having to buy any for a coup…

Meal Plan Friday 7th September 2018

So the first week of school is all but done and the realisation that I must be planned with quick and easy meals or ones that go in the slow cooker hit hard. Sometimes easier said than done. I have noticed the food bill creeping up too so need to keep an eye on that.

Friday - Chili Chicken Wraps. I am going to do a simpler version of this for the boys and add veggies into the meal.

Chilli chicken wraps

Saturday - Moussaka as a ready meal as Mr MC&W is playing golf for the boys Quorn burgers.

Sunday - McDonald's for the boys as a well done treat. We will have Pork Schnitzel

Monday - Prawn and Coconut laksa. The boys will have the noodles with chicken and less spicy

Prawn and coconut laksa

Tuesday - Stuffed Red peppers with Taleggo this is from Gino Healthy Italian and is lovely.

Wednesday - Beef Stroganoff, made with quorn for us all

Beef stroganoff

Thursday - Chicken Breasts in a cream  sage and lime sauce with a mushroom rice. The boys will have this with mash and peas. Again this is f…

Meal Plan Friday 31st August 2018

How did it get to the 31st August and only a few days left of the summer holidays.

Next weeks meals are quick and easy, everyone is going to be tired and emotional with the new term starting. Having to get going in the morning I am not looking forward to. Though listening to them constantly bicker and argue I will not miss.

Friday - Fish, Chips and Peas for us all

Saturday - BBQ as the weather is wonderful

Sunday - Chili for Mr MC&W and I, the boys will have spag bol

Monday - Spiced honey salmon with cous cous. Carbonara for the boys.

Spice and honey salmon with couscous

Tuesday - Chicken, mozzarella and pesto parcels with salad. Pizza for the boys as it is their first day back at school.

Chicken mozzarella pesto filo parcels

Wednesday - Quorn Teryaki for us all

Quorn Beef teriyaki

Thursday - Neapolitan Rice salad - Gino Healthy Italian. Chicken fingers, mash and peas for the boys.


Winter Flowering Bedding Review

You may wonder why I am publishing a winter flower bedding review in mid-August.

We got our winter bedding from Thompson and Morgan, they sent an email about them being on special offer, we got Pansy and Dianthus barbatus (sweet Williams). Due to my lack of gardening knowledge and the fact I clearly did not read the details on the plants properly, I thought we were getting some bedding plants to provide us with flowers through the cold winter months.

Garden ready winter bedding plants

We watched them all through the winter do nothing, just sitting there looking sad, then all of a sudden they started to grow. But the snow came, leaving them completely covered, but these are hard plants and did not die, no they grew and grew.







I was hoping for flowers maybe early spring but Ijust got the tiny signs of buds but still, nothing happened, then late spring early summer and finally they came alive. 







The plants have been amazing, they have grown well and given us beautiful flowers, survived huge dif…