30 days of books

I love reading, it provides the perfect escape for me. Vanisha introduced me 30 days of books, which is a little challenge she's taking part in.
I think its an awesome idea, so I'm taking part too! I'll be posting a whole weeks worth of answers/books in one post. I can't wait to share all my favourite books with you!

1. The best book you read last year - 'The End of Mr Y' by Scarlett Thomas. I won't give too much away, but history, mystery, romance, creation and a little quantum physics thrown in for good measure! It sounds like a difficult read, I promise you its not.

2. A book you've read more than 3 times - 'Pride and Predjudice' by Jane Austen. Come on lets be honest its a classic! I have to admit though I am now fed up of it. In my last year of Uni I had the curse pleasure to play Lady Catherine de Burgh, and I haven't wanted to read it since then.
3. Your favourite series - I've never read a series. I get certain authors I like and then read through ALL their books. I've never been into the Northern Lights, or Harry Potter's of this world though.

4. Favourite book of your favourite series - Once again I can't really answer this.

5. A book that makes you happy - 'Under the Tuscan Sun'  by Frances Mayes. About a woman settling in Italy and all the experiences that brings. It reminds me of the days I miss so much; sitting outside a cafe sipping wine and watching the Italians pass by = bliss!
6. A book that makes me sad - 'One Day' by David Nicholls. I'm finally watching the film adaption in a couple of weeks and I'm very nervous. Does it ruin the book!?!
7. Most underrated book - 'The Book of Lost Things' by John Connolly. A very interesting perspective on the loss of youth and the need to grow up. Told in the style of a fairy-tale.
I would love to read your answers to these questions.
If you could recommend one book to me, what would it be?

H x

Chicken Caesar Burger

Imagine this.....
Your sat at home on a Saturday night, and get a sudden urge for a burger. A proper burger though, not one of these supposedly 'healthy' ones. You are looking after your weight, but you can't shake this craving, what do you do?!
I came up with this recipe. I've attempted to take my favourite,  a classic caesar salad (not including the parmesan), and turn it completely on its head. The only 'low fat' ingredient I've used is the mayo; it is all just pure goodness. It is sooo scrummy! Definitely my fav version of caesar salad, EVER!

Chicken Caesar Burger
Serves - 4
Propoints - 7

Juice of 1 lemon.
1 clove of garlic, crushed.
Black pepper.
1 romaine lettuce.
Low fat mayonnaise.
2 english bread muffins.
4 chicken breasts, no skin.

1. Mix together the lemon juice, garlic, salt, and plenty of black pepper to make a marinade. Add the chicken and leave to chill for at least 1 hour. Chicken doesn't have much flavour, so give it time to soak up the marinades loveliness.  
2. Take the chicken out of the marinade and grill for 10-15, depending on the thickness.
3. Half the muffins and toast. Spread with mayonnaise. Top with lettuce and chicken breast.

So simple, yet so tasty. The perfect Saturday night family meal.

H xo

Friday's Fancies - Oscar Party

Friday's Fancies - Oscar Party

Oscar season is fast approaching, and all eyes are going to be on who's wearing what, as well as who wins what.
I love the Oscar's all the glitz, glam and fake 'well done you won' clapping. Wouldn't you just love to go?! It truly would be the girls ultimate dilemma though, what DO you wear to the Oscar's?
I can't believe celebs go through it year after year, yes I'm sure its one hell of a party and they are 'trained' to go through this kind of thing; but really, no-one wants to be judged on what they are wearing on a night out.  Saying that I can't resist opening the magazines and seeing who got a thumbs down this year.
I cannot tell you how difficult it was to pick my perfect Oscar's dress, it seemed like fate when Oscar De La Renta came to the rescue with this gorgeous red dress (£3530), simple, classic and beyond elegant. I teamed that with Oscar De La Renta gold earrings (£150), gold Christian Louboutin pumps (£880), and the most stunning De-manta lace print clutch by the genius Alexender McQueen (£331).
All finished off with black nails, nude lips and the classic smokey eye, what could you wrong?
Cue lots of rain, someone stepping on my dress, and copious amounts of red wine.

H xo

Jammy Dodgers

Aren't jammy dodgers just the greatest biscuit of all time?! I was so excited when I came across this recipe, and couldn't believe that I hadn't made them before; its so simple!
Gorgeous buttery biscuits with a sticky jam filling and all for 3PP, what could be better?

Jammy Dodgers
Makes - 28
ProPoints - 3
Serving Size - 1 biscuit.
Cost - 12p each.

250g butter, softened
140g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla extract
300g plain flour
6 tbsp raspberry jam (or any jam you like really)

1. Turn the oven to gas mark 4. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl, add the egg yolk and vanilla and briefly beat to combine. Sift over the flour and beat until well combined - add a splash of milk if the mixture is too dry. Shape into 2 balls, wrap in cling film and chill for 20-30 minutes or until firm.
2. Roll out the balls of dough on a lightly floured surface, then stamp out 56 biscuits with a 7-8cm wide cutter. Lay these on baking sheets that have been sprayed with cooking spray. Using a smaller cutter, cut out the holes from half the biscuits. Bake for 10-12 minutes until pale golden, then cool on a wire rack.
3. When the biscuits are cool, mix the jam so it becomes spreadable, then spoon a little onto each whole biscuit, the sandwich together with a 'holey' biscuit. Enjoy!

H xo

Keeping in touch

First off, hello and welcome to my lovely new followers. It is great to have you here and I hope you'll find some inspiration from my ramblings.
Second, I have to thank each and every one of you that commented on my 'motivation' post. I cannot even begin to tell you how much your sweet words helped me this week. I lost another 0.5lbs yesterday, taking me to 4lbs in total, and I am really starting to believe I can do this.
Thirdly, you may or may not know that Google are scrapping GFC (Goggle Friend Connect) for any non-Blogger blogs. This won't affect Eat.Enjoy.Live, but if you're like me and like all your blog posts in one place, I thought I'd listed all the places you where you can keep up with what's going on.

Google+ - https://plus.google.com/s/eat.enjoy.live#s/eat.enjoy.live (Add us to your circle.)
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/EatEnjoyLive/327631357288573 (Don't forget to 'like'!)
Bloglovin - http://www.bloglovin.com/en/blog/3182877/eat-enjoy-live
Twitter - www.twitter.com/#!/eatenjoylive
E-mail me - eatenjoyliveH@gmail.com

Got a lovely post for you tomorrow, stop by and check it out!

H xo

Motivation? Are you out there?

I'm warning you now, this is a rant/I'm so annoyed at myself kinda post. Disguised as a 'help me I need some motivation!'
I've been back on Weight Watchers for 6 weeks, and as you know I was doing pretty well. That weight loss has stopped though, for the past few weeks I've been putting on and then losing the same few pounds. My motivation is very quickly slipping through my fingers, and I can't seem to get past these 3.5lbs that I've lost so far. I've eaten mostly rubbish today and just feel rubbish!
What is a girl to do when she's lacking motivation? Head to Pinterest of course.

The chick in the pic doesn't look old enough to have old friend.. but it still motivates. lol
{I can't find the original page for this picture.}
Sounds like a great idea!
{I can't find the original page for this picture.}

Pounds Lost - Pounds to Go
Here are some of my favourite motivation pictures and sayings, what do you do to keep yourself motivated?
You can follow me on Pinterest using the link in the left hand sidebar.

H xo

Friday Fancies - Italia Edition

When I got the e-mail about this weeks Friday's Fancies theme I got a little excited to say the least.
The theme is travel. What would you wear to visit your dream destination?
As an avid traveller myself, who still wants to see a lot more of the world, I had quite a few places to pick from.
I decided upon Italy. Around 2 years ago I lived and worked in Lecce in Southern Italy, and completely fell in love with the country. I don't think there is another place that I would rather spend the rest of my life.
If I could go back there for just one day, this is the outfit I would wear.
Friday Fancies - Italia Edition
Isn't that dress just stunning!? I need to start saving right now! Even better, its made out of cotton so is going to be uber cool in the heat of the midday sun. I love those shoes too, although I think the cobbles of the old town would prove a challenge. Anyone fancy buying that bag as a very early Christmas present? I think I'm in love!
Where would you go and what would you wear if you could visit your dream destination for a day? Extravagance optional.

H xo

Eating with the Seasons

I've always been thrifty, but after my recent post about budgeting; you can read it here. I realised there are probably more things I can do to save me and my family money, without giving up on the lifestyle we love.
I trawled Amazon and after a heads up from Vanisha found 4 fabulous books on thrifting. In the few short days I've had them, they have become like a second bible to me!
There IS so much more I can do.
First off, eating with the seasons. I am by no means saying don't buy/eat carrots in April because they are 'out' of season, if you like a fruit or veggie then don't deprive yourself of it. Just think on this; when produce is 'in' season the nutrients they provide are at an all time high, and very often the price is at an all time low - you only have to attempt to buy strawberries in October to notice this.
It is pretty easy to find a seasonal produce calender for your region via Google, but as a little blog 'surprise' I've created these printables for you. There are 3. One for the UK, USA and AUS; the 3 places where I get my highest readership from.
Just click on the arrow in the top right hand corner. That will take you to full screen mode. From here you can print or download the documents.

This week I've set myself a little challenge to eat with the seasons. My menu planning day is Friday. So armed with my seasonal calender and my recipe folder I'm going to create some tasty and healthy meals using only seasonal produce.
You need Adobe to download these, if you don't have it click here.

H xo

Feeling The Love

Several weeks ago I signed up to participate in a Valentines blogger package swap hosted by Sherry over at Oh So Lovely. Its such a nice way to connect with other bloggers, and who doesn't like receiving something pretty in the mail right?
I was matched with the lovely Judith. I had my list of favourites ready (stationery, anything pink, jewelry) and she had hers (big rings, cross-stitch, anything teal). The swap had begun.
I can't tell you what I put in Judith's package as I am not sure if she has received it yet (damn you international mailing), but I CAN show you what she sent me!
I squealed with delight twice whilst opening the parcel. Once when I saw how pretty it was, and the second when I realised what it was. Do take into consideration that my love of stationery is now bordering on the obsessive.
I hope to do more blogger swaps in the future, and maybe hold one on here. Who wants to swap?

H xo

Coffee and Walnut Cake

It was my Gramps' birthday yesterday so my Mum and I made some food and took it over to his house to celebrate. Coffee cake is his personal favourite, so of course I made that.
Before I tried this recipe I would have protested and announced at the top of my voice "I don't like coffee cake". That is until I took a bite, this being the one and only coffee cake I've enjoyed.
I was worried whilst baking, as I cut the recipe out of my Essentials magazine and foolishly had only cut out the ingredients section! I had to guess the oven temp, and method; luckily I've baked that many cakes I had an idea of how the recipe might go. As you have probably guessed by now it was successful.
Here is the recipe (may alter slightly from the original!) I urge you if you haven't tried coffee cake, or if, like me, you just plain don't like it, try this one.

Coffee and Walnut Cake
Serves: 10-12

100g caster sugar
100g light muscovado sugar
200g butter
75g walnuts, chopped finely
4 eggs
2 tablespoons instant coffee dissolved in 1 tablespoon boiling water
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fresh nutmeg, finely grated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
200g plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
For the filling/decoration use your favourite frosting and leftover walnut halves.

Heat the oven to gas mark 6. Grease and line two 20cm cake tins.
Cream the butter and both sugars (caster and muscovado) together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time until well combined. Stir in the chopped walnuts, coffee, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract.
Sift in the flour and baking powder, and fold them into the mixture gently. (You want to keep as much air in as possible).
Cook for 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.
Decorate when cooled with frosting and halved walnuts.

I've also finally got round to that blog re-vamp I've been on about for several weeks. What do you all think? An improvement right!?

H xo

Cuddling Cupid

This weeks Friday Fancies theme was pink and red; linking in to that all important holiday, Valentines!
Having no-one to spend the 14th with (universal 'awwwww'). I'm going to paint my nails a ridiculously bright colour, read my favourite novel and snuggle up in my PJ's with a mug of hot cocoa. 
Inspired by my evening of 'me' time is my Fancies for this week.
Seriously how cute are the PJ's? "Naps always help", I couldn't agree more!
1. Heart Cocoa Mug. Debenhams. 7.50
2. PJ's. play.com. 20
3. Heart Headband. notonthehighstreet.com. 16.25
4. Ruby Red Slippers. play.com. 13.75
(All prices are in pounds sterling).

As you can see I still haven't got the pound symbol fixed on my keyboard.
I'll definitely be wearing my pink PJ's on the 14th, and celebrating all the people I love in my life (including you!)

H xo

Hey Big Spender

I don't know about you, but I have to keep a pretty close eye on where my money goes. I'll be totally honest, I've not exactly been an angel with money in the past, but I can proudly say I've learnt my lesson and I'm regaining some control over my finances.
Budgeting helps me no end!! I have a budget sheet on my computer, on my wall, on my phone, in fact anywhere I can fit one. Budgeting has enabled me to visit friends, and enjoy myself, knowing that glass of wine I'm drinking has been hard earned. Plan the perfect girly holiday, knowing that I am going to be able to afford it, and enjoy myself; not feeling guilty that its all on the credit card.
I still lust after the latest outfit and I still manage to sneak the odd magazine into my weekly shop, but I know, in the long run, waiting for that pair of Jimmy Choo's is going to be just as rewarding as having them right now.
Here are a couple of my favourite budget printables. I try to use a different one every month, then at the end of the year it looks pretty as well as financially fit.



H xo

Chef Love - Ann Thornton

I don't know about you guys, but my TV is ALWAYS turned onto Food Network. I not only love it, but am completely obsessed by it. This obsession got a lot worse when, here in the UK, Food Network decided to introduce me to the loveliness that is Ann Thornton. See isn't she pretty?!
I like to think we are so alike, I mean seriously we could be sisters; we both like 'dessert first', have an unhealthy obsession with baking, OK that's kinda where it ends, but I still have much love and respect for this Lady.
In fact I can remember the exact time she tugged at my heart strings, she was making her, now infamous in my house, apple turnovers. She serves hers with home-made caramel sauce and ice cream, but that is just too calorific for me, so I serve mine without. If you want the caramel sauce recipe, you can find it here. Here's the recipe!

Ann Thornton's Apple Turnovers

Serves - 8
Propoints - 4

3 sweet/tart apples
1/4 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/3 cup of water
For pastry:
1 (17.3oz) pack of puff pastry
1 egg (for egg wash)
1 tablespoon sugar

Put the apples, water, sugar and lemon juice in a pan. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Cover and reduce the heat. Cook for 12minutes, until tender. Mash the apples and leave to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to gas mark 6.
For the pastry:
Cut the pastry into 8 squares, and place 1 tablespoon of the apple mixture on top of each square.
Lightly brush the edges with egg wash, fold over and seal, in a triangle shape. Chill for 15 minutes.
Make a small slit in the pastry to let the steam escape. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake for 20 minutes, and serve warm.

Try these on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Delicious!

H xo

Friday Fancies - Its Not Easy Being Green

I LOVE fashion, but when your living off little money and trying to save frantically for the perfect girly holiday; beautiful new clothes become less of a priority.
I've decided to link up with AV over at long distance loving. Posting my Friday Fancies means I can get that shoppers buzz without even having to open my purse.

I love the Spring, which to me is represented by the colour green, thankfully its also the colour of the season! I don't have the confidence/style to carry off an all green combo, so this is my take on the green trend coming your way.

1. Alex Monroe Little Feather Silver Necklace. John Lewis. 93.00
2. Grey Patent Handbag. Amazon. 52.50 
3. Green Kimono Blazer. New Look. 19.99
4. White T-shirt. Matalan. 3.50
5. Grey Court Shoes. Next. 32.00
6. Coral Jeans. Very. 27.00
7. Topaz Pear Shape Silver Earrings.H Samuel. 189.00
(All prices are in pounds sterling)

What colour represents Spring for you?

I have also have an apology to make. My laptop is currently broken, and so I'm having to use my ANCIENT one, which as you my have noticed doesn't actually have a pound symbol or Microsoft Word! Annoying!
On a plus note,Mayra over at blushing beauty gave me a very versatile blogger award today. Thank You Mayra, and I will pass the award on tomorrow.

H xo

5 Ways With Chicken

Chicken (breast, no skin) is one of the leanest meats around, but very often it can be bland and uninteresting.
That's where meat rubs come in. Now don't go to the shop and spend £2-£3 on one, make your own. I promise it will be twice as tasty and half the price!
I have too many dry rub recipes to mention, so here come my top 5.

Garlic Lover's Rub                                   Balsamic Chicken                     Spicy Barbecue Rub

Fresh Herb Rub                                       Tuscan Spice Rub

H xo

ROR - Week 5

I'm SO late with my post this week, but I'm sure you'll all forgive me. Work and life in general have been mega busy really and I'm not getting the time to post. 
I've really enjoyed this week, despite not having the healthy every week challenge to keep me going I've managed to stay on track; just look at these results!

Lbs lost - 3
Lbs to go - 67

I lost another 1.5lbs on Tuesday. I also started going to Zumba and I've heading to aquaerobics on Monday.
My new resolution has been going well too! See my lovely new blog button, well it was made for me by the lovely Kelly over at eatyourselfskinny. I made the not so difficult decision to become a sponsor for her wonderful site.
OK so maybe I didn't meet my target of adding 3 new things to my blog, but the button is a start!

This week I am going too:

  • Post at least 3 times next week.
  • Create a Facebook page for Eat.Enjoy.Live.
  • Lose 2lbs.
I'm going to carry on doing my ROR posts each week, but I'm only going to post my weight loss. I'll then round up each month EVERYTHING that has been happening.

H xo

Copyright © 2013 Eat Enjoy Live. Design by Horses of Ares. All Rights Reserved.