Friday, 29 August 2014

Mr Hyde National Burger Day 2014

This Wednesday celebrated the second Mr Hyde National Burger Day so it would have been rude not to have burgers for dinner…

The burgers I made are super simple and don't call for too many ingredients

National Burger Day


500g beef mince
75g grated cheese with scotch bonnet chillies (you can use any good melting cheese)
tomato ketchup

1 large sweet potato
olive oil
garlic granules
sea salt (we LOVE this amazing salt from San Sebastian Food, check out all their fab products available through Amazon here)
2 corn on the cob
tomato ketchup

1. add a good squeeze of ketchup to the mince along with a generous seasoning of salt and pepper in a large bowl and mix together with your hands

2. divide the mince mixture into four equal portions

3. divide each portion into two and shape into a patty

National Burger Day

4. pop a quarter of the grated cheese onto four of the patties

National Burger Day

5. place the four patties without cheese onto of those containing cheese and squish together to make a ball and seal the edges, once sealed re-shape into a patty

National Burger Day

6. cover with cling film and pop into the fridge until you are ready to cook

7. chop the sweet potato up into wedges…aim to make all wedges a similar size so they cook uniformly

8. spritz olive oil on a baking tray and lay out the wedges, sprinkle over a little garlic powder and sea salt, muddle up with your hands so all wedges are covered evenly

9. pop wedges into a pre-heated oven (200°C) for about 40mins or until cooked, give the tray a shake halfway through so the wedges don't stick and cook evenly

10. bring a large pan of water to the boil for the corn on the cob, once boiling pop the corn on the cob in for about 20mins or until cooked

11. place a griddle pan on a high heat and place the four burgers into the pan, be patient and don't be tempted to move the burgers around until the meat has had time to brown and caramelise on one side (about 5-10mins) then flip and repeat on the other side

National Burger Day

12. whilst the burgers are cooking its time to make the harissa mayonnaise, squeeze about 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon of tomato ketchup and half a teaspoon (more or less depending on how hot you like it!) into a bowl and combine

National Burger Day

13.  once the burgers are cooked to your liking remove from the pan and set aside, give the pan a wipe down with kitchen roll (be careful not to burn yourself) and pop the rolls cut side down on for a minute or so to toast

14.  once all elements are cooked its time to plate up…pile your wedges up, chop your corn in half and speed your rolls with some of the harissa mayo and tomato before toping with your delicious cheesy burgers and enjoy!

National Burger Day

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

4 Month Update...

Four months…how on earth did that happen!?

4 Months

There have been so many changes since the last update and even though I have been trying to note things down as they happen I am sure there are more I have forgotten.

We are so lucky to have such a happy smiley baby, he still only really cries when there is something wrong and 99% of the time as soon as it is fixed he's back to his ultra cute smiley self.

4 Months

This month saw the little dude have his second set of vaccinations and his BCG.  He was such a trooper and didn't even cry for the BCG.

He's been developing at such a pace it's hard to keep up with…

- if you poke your tongue out at him he'll poke his right back!  We had a couple of weeks where that tiny tongue was poking out all the time!
- we have a thumb sucker on our hands, although that doesn't mean he's given up the dummy…he'll happily swap between the two.  I'm pretty sure he would have sucked his thumb from birth, he used to get so frustrated in the hospital when he had the splint on and couldn't get to his thumb, but it's surprised me that it took him until now to find it again.
- he's trying so so hard to roll  from his back to his tummy and is nearly there, but hasn't quite got the momentum to go all the way yet.  There were a couple of front to back rolls during one tummy time session, but he was so shocked by the landing that he hasn't attempted it again!
- he's desperate to sit up and is no longer happy lying for down for anything much longer than five minutes now even on his play mat.  We've started using our bumbo for short periods of time and he LOVES it!

4 Months

Nap times have become a bit more structured he tends to have a couple of shorter naps in the morning and then a longer one in the afternoon.  If we've had a particularly busy day he might have a second one in the afternoon.  We were making some progress in moving nap times out of his bouncy chair and into the cot, but if I'm honest we've regressed a bit here…must get back onto that.  I've also found that when he's over tired and struggling to sleep singing really helps.  Our current favourite is 'Lets Go Fly A Kite'

All of the above developments are amazing, but the best thing ever was hearing his first proper precious giggle…the absolute best sound in the world ever.  I now spend pretty much ever waking moment trying to make the little dude laugh…nothing better.

We love you more and more everyday little dude x

Thursday, 21 August 2014

A Flat 102 Production...

On August 16th 2013 after feeling a bit odd for a couple of days and getting a temperature spike I took a pregnancy test…

big fat positive

I could not quite believe my eyes…POSITIVE.  I was in the flat alone at the time as Mr O was away and I vividly remember crying and hopping about the bathroom flapping my arms, I must have looked like a crazy person!  I was pregnant!  I had been lead to believe over the years due to health issues that there would only be a very slim chance that I would be able to get pregnant naturally, but we had done it!

I kept this amazing secret to myself all day at work as I wanted to tell Mr O in person, and once he got home I shared the good news and of course we did another test just to be sure!

big fat positive

We started taking weekly photos when the little dude, known as Bean at this point, was about 8 weeks along and the size of a raspberry! To mark a year since we started on this amazing journey I pulled those weekly photos into a quick video (please excuse the quality, its my first time working with iMovie!).  It was so fun to look back at my growing bump, it already feels a lifetime ago!


I feel so blessed and grateful everyday that I get to be the little dudes Mummy…love you millions.

Friday, 15 August 2014

Our Weekend: Mayfield Lavender Farm

During our honeymoon road trip around France we were lucky enough to stop of at a couple of gorgeous Lavender Farms and now the smell of Lavender instantly takes me back to those special couple of weeks.

Last weekend we decided to pay Mayfield Lavender Farm a visit and I am so glad we did, once there we could quite easily been right back in Provence.

We got up early to make sure we missed the forecasted showers and were rewarded with beautiful a blue sky interrupted only by the odd perfectly fluffy white cloud.

mayfield lavender farm

We were greeted by a concentrated waft of lavender and, possibly, the friendliest car park attendant who instructed us to make sure we ventured up to the back field as it was blooming…and he wasn't wrong.

mayfield lavender farm

As you walk towards the second field you can hear the intensity of an odd buzzing growing.  Its only when you arrive there you realise it is the collective hum of millions of bees.  Thankfully they were to interested in the tasty lavender to bother us!

mayfield lavender farm
if you look real close you'll spot the bees!

mayfield lavender farm
he loves to 'fly', just like a bee!

mayfield lavender farm

mayfield lavender farm
taken in between trying to prise lavender out of the little dudes hands before it made it into his mouth!

mayfield lavender farm
my boys...

mayfield lavender farm
he's getting to be so cheeky!

mayfield lavender farm

mayfield lavender farm
obligatory family selfie with only one person looking at the camera!

mayfield lavender farm
my favourite shot of the day

mayfield lavender farm

If you do pop along I can highly recommend the lavender lemonade…delicious!  We'll definitely be back.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Great British Bake Off...

Wednesday night saw the return of The Great British Bake Off (GBBO) and I think the show gained a new fan!

great british bake off

I try not to have the TV on too much during the day, but I decided to treat the little dude to GBBO and he was mesmerised!

great british bake off
no soggy bottoms here!

After watching GBBO I always vow to bake more, but in reality it never really happens.  If I did have the time though this banana bread recipe is one of my favourite…thanks Nigella!  I have in the past made this without the walnuts (when I've forgotten to buy any!), swapping out 25g of flour for cocoa powder (the best way) and using gluten free flour.  

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Me And Mine: A Family Portrait Project - July

Looking back through this months pictures it hit me that most of our family pictures are selfless…whilst these are fun and sometimes the only option it would be nice to expand our repertoire.  Maybe is time to invest in a tripod!

This months picture is a selfie taken at Kew Gardens

kew gardens

Not long after the arrival of the little dude we signed up for a family membership to Kew Gardens.  Having unlimited access to the gardens almost makes up for the lack of our own garden!

A couple of weeks back we spent a lovely afternoon exploring…

kew gardens
the plan house...

kew gardens
beautiful waterlillies…my favourite glass house

kew gardens

kew gardens
this little dude just loves 'flying'!

kew gardens
and poking his tongue out!

kew gardens
it would have been rude not to try the gin and tonics...

kew gardens
No. 3 gin and botanical ingredients with health benefits…

kew gardens
gin and tonic with health benefits…

kew gardens
...sign me up!!

The gin was delicious, but I have to say at £6.50 for a small glass it did feel as though the prices had been inflated to take advantage of the captive audience which was a shame, but don't let that put you off a visit to the rest of the gardens.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Weekend Fun...

This weekend was full of friends, fun and lots of laughs…the best kind!

Saturday was spent taking the little dude to his swimming lesson, he really is getting the hang of it and more importantly enjoying it now.  We then headed off to meet friends over from Abu Dhabi in the pub.  No pictures of that one I'm afraid, too busy chatting!

On Sunday we headed off to Virginia Water for Mr and Mrs M's housewarming BBQ.  The boys gathered around the BBQ on one side of the garden as the girls swarmed around the babies (and prosecco!) a grown up version of the boy/girl divide at a middle school disco!

We were treated to delicious 'posh dogs' if you haven't tried them yet…do yourself a favour and fire your BBQ up this weekend, you will not regret it!  As a thank you for the fab hospitality we brought along the ingredients for my UK take on the US S'more.  Traditionally S'mores are made from marshmallow sandwiched between graham crackers and hershey chocolate, but given it is difficult to track down graham crackers in the UK added to the fact I really don't like Hershey chocolate I decided to come up with a UK friendly version…step forward McVities chocolate digestives!  All you need to do is pop your marshmallows on BBQ skewers (if you are using wooden ones make sure you soak them first to stop them catching on fire!) once they are melted squish (technical term!) them between two chocolate digestives, works well with both milk and dark versions.  Enjoy!

Flat 102 BBQ
Mr M in charge of the BBQ

Flat 102 BBQ
this little dude got so many cuddles and loved every second

Flat 102 BBQ
Daddy and his boy...

Flat 102 BBQ
…so much love

Flat 102 BBQ
eyeing up the posh dogs…or is it the blondes?!

Flat 102 BBQ
family selfie

Flat 102 BBQ
why wouldn't you match your babiators with your dummy!?

Flat 102 BBQ
still can't believe he keeps his sunglasses on!

Flat 102 BBQ
we laughed ALL afternoon

Flat 102 BBQ
UK S'mores

Thanks everyone who helped make this weekend such a good one…special thanks to Zoe for the amazing pictures!


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