Lost for words

I'm been reading a few posts recently that talk about blogging dips. You know when you just have that horrible feeling that you have nothing interesting to write about any more?

Well, I think its infectious and I've caught it!

I've literally spent ALL day thinking of what to write, but I literally am lost for words.

I was going to do a recipe post, but then I couldn't get the ingredients, so frustrating!

I have posts scheduled for the rest of the week, it just seems like today my brain refuses to write anything worth reading.

I want to enjoying blogging. I don't want to sit and panic as I haven't written a post in a few days, and I hope you won't mind that either. I plan and writing posts for several years to come, and I don't want to resent ever starting this blog in the future.

I have made so many friends through blogging (you), and you deserve me on top blogging form!

So today I'm taking a break. 



Vanilla Buttercream Squares

I originally wasn't going to post these, but since posting on Facebook this morning that I was making these, I've had no end of requests for pictures and the recipe.
When something is in such high demand I just have to share it right?

I'm not going to lie to you, these take a while to make. What with all the cooking, cooling and prep, we're talking about 90 minutes. They are so worth it though.
The cake itself is moist and light. The buttercream is sweet, but it compliments the cake perfectly.

They make the perfect party tray-bake. You could even cover the top is the birthday boy or girl's favourite sweets, yum!

Vanilla Buttercream Squares


Makes: 16

Ingredients:
For the sponge:
200g butter, softened and diced, plus extra for greasing
200g caster sugar
3 eggs
325g plain flour, sifted
3tsp baking powder
2tsp vanilla extract
150ml milk
For the buttercream:
150g butter, softened and diced
200g icing sugar, sifted
2tsp vanilla extract
2tbsp milk

Method:

  1. 1. Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 4. Line the base of a 20cm square cake tin with baking parchment and grease the sides with butter.
  2. Cream the butter, and gradually add the sugar and eggs. Fold in the remaining ingredients.
  3. Tip the mixture into the tin, smooth the top and bake in the oven for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. Meanwhile, make the buttercream. Cream the butter until soft, then beat in the remaining ingredients.
  5. Place the cake on a plate and spread the buttercream over the top using a palette knife. Cut into 16 squares.

I didn't have a big enough cake tin for this recipe. I baked it in one that was slightly smaller, meaning it took an hour to cook.
I also sliced the cake horizontally in half before I iced it. A quick tip for getting a straight cut; 
Make a groove all the way round the cake. Then place a length of string in the grooves and pull the opposite ends. 
You'll come out with a perfectly cut cake.



30 days of books



Oops! How long is it since I did a 30 days of books post? Well I can tell you.....42 days! My bad people.

Here you go though. I'm officially all caught up on the literature front.


Favourite male character


Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights = absolute classic! 




Favourite female character


Sugar from Crimson Petal and the white. She's independent but fragile and naive, all the makings of a good lead female.



Favourite quote from your favourite book



I didn't list this as my favourite book, and I'm actually quite shocked by that. Those who know me, know my opinion is that Wuthering Heights is one of the best books ever written. To give you a bit of background, Cathy (the speaker) is marrying Linton (he's rich), but she loves Heathcliff (he's poor). She has grown up with Heathcliff all her life, and although he's of a lower class, they  are each other.  Here's my quote:


" I cannot express it; but surely you and everybody have a notion that there is, or should be an existence of yours beyond you. What were the use of creation if I were entirely contained here? My great miseries in this world have been Heathcliff's miseries, and I watched and felt each from the beginning; my great thought in living is himself. If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger; I should not seem a part of it. My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods. Time will change it, I'm well aware, as winter changes the trees — my love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath — a source of little visible delight, but necessary. Nelly, I am Heathcliff — he's always, always in my mind — not as a pleasure, any more than I am always a pleasure to myself — but as my own being  so, don't talk of our separation again — it is impracticable. "


To me this quote just sums up true love. 


Favourite book turned into a movie


None. I'm not saying books turned into movies are no good. I just always have a different picture of how things would have happened and get annoyed when it doesn't go that way.

Favourite romance book



Wuthering Heights, repeating myself here! Technically its Gothic literature, but I see the romance in it.

Favourite book from your childhood



The tiger who came to tea. If you have young children, get this book and read it too them. I can promise you they will love it. Actually it being performed at my local theatre and I am so tempted to go!




Favourite book you own


Oooooo difficult one. No comment! :P

A book that you wish more people would've read



The bible.


Favourite title


The book of lost things. I mean who wouldn't be drawn into that title?

Your favourite book of all time



Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Relevant than and still relevant now.






As you can tell I'm a classics girl. I urge you if you haven't read them to give them a go.


Which of these are you going to try? 



'Social Punk' Blog Tour

Have you ever heard of Monica Leonelle?

I hadn't, until I received a lovely e-mail asking if I would participate in her blog tour to promote her new book; 'Social Punk'.

Monica is a well-known digital media strategist and the author of three novels. She blogs at Prose on Fire, and shares her writing and social media knowledge with other bloggers. She also authors through her Free Writer Toolkit, which I have and its wonderful so go and check it out!


Now I'll admit it. I haven't actually read 'Social Punk'. I know, I know, "what you haven't actually read the book and yet you're promoting it!" I have read extracts though, and Monica is onto something good with this one Ladies and Gents.

Here's a quick description:

Ima would give anything to escape The Dome and learn what’s beyond its barriers, but the Chicago government has kept all its citizens on lockdown ever since the Scorched Years left most of the world a desert wasteland. When a mysterious group of hooded figures enters the city unexpectedly, Ima uncovers a plot to destroy The Dome and is given the choice between escaping to a new, dangerous city or staying behind and fighting a battle she can never win.

Look I even have excerpt's for you!

Excerpt #1: Prologue

After playing God for six years with the world he created, he couldn’t control any of his subjects, none at all. Over the years, he had watched them evolve and become the sum of their own choices rather than the sum of his; and for that, he regretted ever giving them life.
A small, blinking red light from just inside his eyelid reminded him of the news they sent him earlier that morning. The company had cancelled his funding and would shut down his project within three months. According to them, the project cost too much and took up too much space, and the inconclusive results couldn’t be published reputably, now or in the future.
Six years of his work, tens of thousands of lives at stake—and he could do nothing to save any of it. He bowed his head, letting his chin rest on the rim of his breakfast smoothie. The smoothie reeked of powder—crushed pills—but he supposed he had better get used to it. He wouldn’t be able to afford the luxury of real food after they canned him.
He closed his eyes and called up the camera view of one of his favourites, number 3281. She fascinated him; he couldn’t deny it. When he had designed her, her pre-teen rebelliousness lit fire in her eyes. A survivor, he’d thought. He’d meant for her to have it all—to grow up, to get married to the love of her life, and to have a beautiful family of her own someday.
But he had only given her sadness so far. Instead of creating a strict father, he had given her an abusive one. Instead of creating a loving boyfriend, he had given her a friend who could never love her. And instead of creating a strong, proud mother, he had given her a meek one, who watched the whole thing unfold and did nothing about it.
He looked at his last and final creation sitting in the chair across from him—his own son, not awakened yet. The law forbade him to have any children of his own, so this boy would substitute.
But he had done the unthinkable with this creation—he had bestowed on it his own thoughts, emotions, and decision-making processes. He’d given the boy his own mind, his own physical characteristics, his own wants and desires.
He had never done so with any of the others because of the dangers of investing too heavily in any one of his subjects. But who could he kid? He had not stayed objective thus far, watching some of his subjects more closely than others, wishing for the happiness of some at the expense of others. He had become an abomination, a monster of his own doing, who had created subjects only to watch them suffer.
He couldn’t forgive himself; not now, not ever. His eyes lingered on the vial that sat next to his breakfast smoothie, that he’d stowed away for the day when they destroyed all his work, his entire world. He would save it, tuck it away for now, for as long as he could protect them. When things spun out of his control, he would drink it and end himself the way he had ended them.
In the ancient stories, gods frequently gave their sons as gifts. Now, he would give his son as a gift to her, number 3281. So she could be happy in her last months on earth, before they destroyed her with the rest of them.

Excerpt #2: Food-related

Twelve cups of water sat on the table, four for each of them. Next to each cup sat a pill—yellow for fat, red for carbs, blue for protein, and green for vitamins.
Vaughn took the red pill, ripped it in half like a pack of sugar, and poured it into his cup. He set his cup into a contraption on the table and it whirled and hissed. When the machine finished, the cup had a pink, swirly liquid inside.
Nahum looked at the four cups in distaste.
“Not up to your standards?” Vaughn asked, shooting his drink. He swallowed the mixture in one large gulp. “I would get you something else, but we’re rebuilding our hash. We can’t afford real food, plus it’s bad for you anyway. Extremely difficult to maintain a balanced diet.”
“Synthetic food can’t cost that much,” Nahum countered. He grinned. “We had it in our little fake world, at least.”
Vaughn chuckled. “Synthetic food is even worse for you than real food. Shortens your life. We stopped eating that stuff at the turn of the century. It gave people long-term hyperactivity, which can kill you. LTH took out a lot of the population, kind of like cancer in your day, except a bigger deal because the population had dwindled so low already. Plus, people live indefinitely now.”
Nahum’s nose twitched as he laughed. “People don’t live indefinitely.”
But Vaughn looked genuinely surprised. “Of course we do. Have you seen anyone who looks over the age of twenty-five to you?”
“What does that mean, though?” Ima asked out of curiosity. “How could you live indefinitely? You may not look older, but you still age.”
Vaughn grinned. “Like I said before—there’s a lot you don’t understand about this world.”

Excerpt #3: Fashion-related

A woman with long purple eyelashes, who kind of reminded Ima of a butterfly, brushed by Ima with tattooed art entirely covering both her arms. One of the tattoos started out as a young boy who grew just a little older with each second, until he looked like a man. To Ima’s amazement, the tattoo played like a home video.
Ima looked at Vaughn for explanation. “How—?”
“Pixel skin-grafts,” Vaughn whispered into ima’s ear. “Some people do their entire bodies in them. Doesn’t do much in terms of protection, but lets you change your outfit on a Clout.”
What do you think? Honest opinions only please!

You've probably clicked all ready that Monica is a really nice gal. Well guess what, she even threw in a giveaway for you. I mean, check out the prizes! You enter quick though. You only have 6 days - eeekkk!





A little bird told me + A winner!

Have you ever heard of the brave girls club

Run by two amazing ladies; Kathy Wilkins and Melody Ross. The brave girls club is a online community where women can get together and share ideas and experiences. Not only that but they run some amazing online classes {try soul restoration} and mountain retreats

Seriously who wouldn't want to be part of a group of brave and beautiful women?!

How did I find out about the brave girls club I hear you ask. The answer through their wonderfully beautiful and uplifting daily e-mails. They really are the perfect way to start the day. Over the past week they have even made me cry! Its seems like every letter was written 100% specifically for me.

I urge you join me and get your daily 'a little bird told me' e-mails. Every women should start the day off on the right foot.
a little bird told me...your daily truth from the Brave Girls Club
Thank You so much to everyone who entered my recent giveaway. We have a winner!

Congratulations......Rosie Q!

I'll be in touch soon.

{Interview} Jessica from Glassy Chic Boutique

Hello Lovelies!


I have a travel related guest post on Laura's blog Our Reflection today {seriously, you need to go and check it out!}
Attached to this is a giveaway - yay! Before you leave though to go and enter, I have a little interview for you with a wonderful lady called Jessica. 
Jessica is the super talented woman behind Glassy Chic Boutique. She makes necklace you could win and is going to personalise it for you too, how cool is that?!


Over to you Jessica!


1. Tell me about yourself



My name is Jessica Ely. I live in Lansing, MI with my husband and we are expecting our first baby in July, a little boy!! I have been making jewellery and selling on Etsy for 3 years. 

2. What is your favourite piece in your collection and why?

I absolutely love my mommy necklaces and my bible verse necklaces.
Although I haven't yet experienced it myself, I know that being a mom is one of the most rewarding and beautiful experiences in life. I love offering these mommy necklaces and allowing moms to proudly display those that are so precious to them!
My bible verse necklaces hold a very special place in my heart as I have recently renewed and strengthened my relationship with Jesus Christ. It warms my heart to share these necklaces with others, allowing them to be reminded of God's amazing word and hopefully offering hope and encouragement to those around them as well! I truly believe that our lives and hearts can be completely transformed through Jesus Christ and this is were true peace and Joy is found!!

3. Why did you start to make jewelry?

I had worked for several years in the child development field as an assistant and lead preschool teacher. I came across photo jewelry pendants on Etsy and thought I would try my hand at it, so I opened my own store. I started small, working on the side, around my "day job" for about a year. I then added my hand stamped pieces and was surprised at how well my customers were responding to them!! I decided,at that point, with the support of my husband, to take a huge leap of faith and quit my job to peruse my jewelry business full time. A huge motivating factor in my doing so, was my desire to soon start a family. To me, working from from home and staying home with the baby would be ideal. I couldn't be happier that I made that decision just over a year ago. It's been so great going through this pregnancy in the comfort of my home and I look forward to learning how to manage taking care of our little boy and working. I have been hugely blessed and Thank God everyday!! My customers couldn't be anymore awesome and I appreciate them more than they could know!!!

4. Who or what are your major creative influences?

My customers are probably my biggest creative influence! Because this jewelry is largely custom, my customers are always coming up with new ideas for me. I love hearing the new bible verses that my customers hold dear to them and the stories that they often share about how the piece will hold significance to them or those they love. 
I also enjoy just playing around with the different components I have on my desk, until I come up with something I love! 

Thanks Jessica!
Here a a few of my favourite pieces from her collection. Click on the picture to shop!

Which is your favourite piece?
As a special treat, if you mention that you saw her ship on Eat.Enjoy.Live or Our Reflection you will get free shipping!

Go over to Our Reflection now to read my guest post and enter this giveaway!


Mommy Necklace...your child's name and birthstone..arrives in a pretty organza bag
Mommy Necklace $12.50
mommy necklace with heart charm. cupped disc. your name of choice. Pretty cursive font. Ball or snake chain option.
Mommy Necklace $15

Bible Verse Bracelet.. Proverbs 3:5..Trust in the Lord with all your heart...or CUSTOMIZE..up to 60 Characters.
Bible Verse Bracelet $15


Cannellini Bean and Rosemary Soup {Recipe}

If your eyes have flicked straight to the photos you'll have noticed that this soup isn't great looking, to be honest it looks a little like baby sick {ummm appetising}. Don't leave though! It tastes FAR better than it looks, its super filling, full of fibre and low{ish} on points too. Its basically the wonder woman of soups!

Adapted from an Aldo Zilli recipe. I've scraped the croutons, the butter, the cheese and the olive oil. OK it totally sounds like all the yummy ingredients have gone, but on this one your just going to have to trust me.
It is the perfect soup to have before you go out for a dreaded buffet. Filling you up, so you don't fill your plate.

Cannellini Bean and Rosemary Soup


Serves - 4
ProPoints - 5

Ingredients:
Low fat cooking spray
1 garlic clove
2 carrots, sliced
1 onion, finely chopped
2 stalks of celery, diced
1 litre of hot vegetable stock
2 x 410g cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary.

Method:

  1. Spray and pan with cooking spray and saute the garlic, carrots, onion and celery for 8 minutes, until the onion is translucent, then remove the garlic. 
  2. Add the vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and cook for 20 minutes.
  3. Add the beans and rosemary and cook for a further 15 minutes.
  4. Place half the soup in a blender or food processor {I just used a hand blender} and blitz until smooth. Return to the remaining soup in the pan and reheat.

Just give this one a try, you won't be disappointed. The beans make it thick and creamy without any bad fats. 


Chicken Rollatini w/ Courgette and Mozzarella Stuffing {Recipe}

Isn't it SO annoying when you write a post and then realise you've stupidly deleted the photos that were supposed to go on it!? Apology's for the lack of photos on this post!

I've had this recipe for a while, and can't believe I've only just tried it! It is so yummy.
I've adapted it from Skinny Taste into UK weight watchers points, and with a slight change of ingredients.
It looks like a complicated recipe because of the stuffing element, but honestly it is so simple! It would make a great dinner party meal as you can make it ahead; bonus!

My only mistake with this recipe......whilst I was rolling the chicken I realised I had nothing to secure the stuffing with. No cocktail sticks, no kebab sticks, not even a toothpick. I spent ages racking my brain until I thought of a solution.....bacon! I kid you not, wrapping the chicken in bacon kept the stuffing inside and the chicken super moist.
Of course the bacon's optional if you are slightly more organised with your kitchen utensils than I am!

Chicken Rollatini with Courgette and Mozzarella Stuffing


Serves - 8
ProPoints - 8

Ingredients:
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 medium courgette
50g Parmesan
90g light mozzarella
salt and pepper
8 chicken breasts
100g dried breadcrumbs
juice of 1 lemon
8 rashers of bacon
Cooking spray
1 tbsp olive oil

Method:

  1. 1.Season chicken with salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to gas mark 8. Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. 2.Saute the garlic on a medium-high heat for a minute. Add the courgette, most of the Parmesan, salt and pepper and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Set aside to cool. When cool, add the mozzarella and mix to combine.
  3. 3.Butterfly the chicken breasts {see video below} and spread 3 tbsp of the courgette-cheese mixture on each one. Loosely roll each one and keep seam side down. Here you either want to secure it, or wrap it in bacon!
  4. 4.Combine breadcrumbs and the remaining Parmesan in one bowl: in a second bowl combine olive oil, lemon juice and pepper.
  5. 5.Dip the chicken in the lemon-oil mixture, then in the breadcrumbs and place seam side down in a baking dish. Repeat with the remaining chicken. When finished, lightly spray with cooking spray.
  6. 6.Bake for 25-30 minutes. Serve immediately.




Hope you enjoy.

H xo

Classic Oat Cookies {Recipe}

How are you all coping after the chocolate and general sugar feast that took place yesterday? Luckily I only got one egg, and then got back on the cross trainer this afternoon.

Speaking of exercise and weight loss, I think I've turned a corner. Most of you know the past couple of months have been STRESSFUL with a capital S (see my previous post), and my weight loss journey has just taken a back seat. Well now that everything is basically resolved it needs to take priority again. I don't know about y'all, but I need to stop making excuses and just get off my bum. So today I did. I got on the cross trainer, and a mile later a feel on top of the world.
Tired, hot, sweaty and oh so not pretty, but still on top of the world.
We all make excuses don't we? For me its always tomorrow. Oh I'll start tomorrow, I can't today, but tomorrow I'll do it, I'll do that exercise video tomorrow. You know what's coming......tomorrow NEVER comes!
This is one of my favourite motivational quotes.


OK so weight loss/fitness pep talk over, lets get onto the good stuff......cookies!

I know I nearly always say this, but these really are amazing.

Its not a weight watchers recipe or even a low fat recipe, but I followed all the ingredients to the letter and they only came out at 4pp! Plus they are FULL of oats, and fill you up. Its the type of cookie where you do actually only need one.
Another plus point......you know when a cookie recipe says it makes 30, then you make up the batter and you can only ever seem to get 10 decent sized cookies out of it. This isn't one of those recipes, it says it yields 30 and it does. 30 very decently sized cookies.

They come out just like cookies should do, crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside.

I had some dark chocolate left over in the fridge which I melted down and dipped the bottom of half the cookies into, but that is totally optional.


Classic Oat Cookies

Yields - 30
ProPoints - 4 per cookie

Ingredients:
175g margarine
275g demerara sugar
1 egg
4 tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract
375g rolled oats
140g plain flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
70g dark chocolate (optional)

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4. Spray two large baking sheets with cooking spray.
2. Cream together the margarine and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in the egg, water and vanilla extract until the mixture is smooth.
3. In a separate bowl (do not skip this step) mix the oats, flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda. Gradually stir the oat mixture into the butter mixture until thoroughly combined (It is very thick batter, so get those arms working!)
4. Put rounded tablespoonfuls of the mixture onto the baking sheets, spaced well apart (I had to do them in several batches). Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown (mine took 20 minutes).
5. Leave to cool.
6. If using the chocolate. Melt it in a microwave (be careful not to burn it), then dip the bottom of 15 cookies into the chocolate and leave to harden.

I hope you like these.

Let me know if you try them.

H xo

Watch....{Inspiration}

I saw this plaque in a shop on holiday, and after reading the quote I knew I had to buy it.
I've been reflecting on myself recently and have come to realise that there is still a lot I need to learn in life.
This quote just about sums it all up. Be kind to one another, after all its all we've got!



H xo

NB: Happy Easter! I hope y'all have a lovely time with friends and family.

My First Giveaway!

Its been a week of firsts. Yesterday my first product review and today my first giveaway!
Many of you have been loyal readers from the start and I thought it was high time I showed my appreciation.

As you well know I was bowled over by how good MUA nail varnish is, you can see my review here. Yes the bottles are smaller than regular nail varnish bottles, but at only £1 you can't really complain.

I was that impressed that I decided to buy a couple more of my favourite colours. Luckily they are the ones I used to create my frosted lollipop orange look, and give them away to you, my lovely followers!
I've also thrown in a mini manicure kit; it even attaches to your keys. There are officially no more excuses for bad cuticles and split nails.


The only mandatory entry is that you have to be a GFC follower of this blog, the rest are optional.
The giveaway will run from today (6.04.12) until the 20.04.12. I will announce the winner on the 22.04.12.
The giveaway is worldwide.

Budget Diva Shopping and a Review

I am so proud of myself. I went shopping today for the first time in AGES and didn't pay full price for anything, thanks to my NUS card and lots of savvy shopping.
All in all I came away with 27 separate items all for a mere £31!
I had to share some of the fabulous bargains I got, and of course where you can get them too.



New look have all jewelry and hair accessories on BOGOF at the moment - run ladies, run!
Pack of 4 bobby pins - £3.99
Pastel bangles - £5.99
Heart bobby pin - £3.50
Flower cluster ring - £3.99
I got all this for £8.97, saving me £8.50 thanks to my NUS card as well.


Next have got an offer on all cards and wrapping paper, 4 for the price of 3.
Cards - £1.00 - £1.50
Wrapping paper - £1.00
Total cost £4.50, no NUS discount here :(


Bodycare have 3 packs of makeup remover wipes for £1.00


Belt from Dorothy Perkins. 85p with my NUS discount. Greatest bargain of the day!


Superdrug have tea tree moisturiser 2 for 3.99.

I got all the MUA makeup for £6.00, that's £1.00 per item!

I had to review my new makeup for you. I've seen MUA before in Superdrug, but I'm very picky with makeup and I thought makeup for £1.00 couldn't possibly be any good. I was totally wrong! The face powder is so silky and covers every single flaw. The eye shadow sits perfectly on your eyelids, no nasty creases. As for the nail varnish I was seriously impressed. I brought an orange colour and a light white. Out of the two I kind of created my own colour which I've called Frosty Orange Lollipop. Base coat of the white, two coats of orange, and a top coat of the white. It looks good, even if I do say so myself.

Go and try MUA I promise you won't be disappointed!

Make sure you come by tomorrow and check out my MUA related giveaway.

H xo

Guest Post - Balcony Gardens

If you haven't already realised I am away at the moment. The internet usually works, so I thought I would have no problem blogging. Unfortunately the internet has been done for the past 4 days, and I have missed you and all your blogs.

Luckily I have the most amazing Lady guest posting for you today.

Vanisha for Vanisha's life in Australia has written the most amazing post on balcony gardens for you. She's on holiday too at the moment in her home country of Fiji, and I've written a guest post for her. Make sure you check it out over the next couple of weeks.

Over to you Vanisha!

Hello readers of Eat.Enjoy.Live!. I’m Vanisha from Vanisha’s Life in…Australia. Helen asked me to do a guest post whilst she’s enjoying a lovely holiday! I’m in Fiji at the moment on holiday too but I couldn’t pass up the chance to help Helen out and meet all of you!
Last year I started a balcony garden and so I thought I'd write about that today. Helen always has such great recipes on her blog and lots of healthy living advice (remember her great seasonal fruits and vegetable chart?), so I thought this would be perfect for her and her readers. I must say it was the images of balcony gardens that got me motivated to do one myself! 
 
I thought I’d give you a few of my tips. I’m no expert. These are just lessons I have learnt along the way.
via 1 2 3
The first was, some of the expert advice I got, just didn’t work! A couple of my plants died or didn’t grow well. I got rid of them and started again. I think just watching them grow and getting a feel of how things are going is more effective then following a book to the letter. You’ll learn as you go along, I sure did. And you’ll notice the plants responding to what you do, or don’t do. The best way to figure things out, in my opinion.
The beginnings of my garden
If you have the space, I would suggest a few bigger pots as opposed to many small pots. Plants (like us) like their space!
 
Big(ger) pots next time!
My husband mixed what we grew in each big pot and it seems to have worked. So we had Gardenia (flowers) and rocket (lettuce) growing in the same pot and they turned out just fine!
They actually GREW!
If you’re planting with seeds – keep the packet! I threw some of mine away and misplaced the rest. The seed packets contain information about how to harvest your plants. So important! I uprooted my rocket only to find the packet later and learnt that they would have grown up to three more times after the first harvest! I was so annoyed!
Rocket from the garden and my strawbabies (strawberries!
I was worried about failure – nothing I’ve ever planted has ever grown! And considering the first couple of plants I planted died, I was upset but then I harvested some rocket and the herbs are flourishing! I definitely think it’s worth a try. I had to give it a go a few times and learnt along the way but that was half the fun.
Helen's seasonal food chart has been handy to have around as well.
I love watching the plants grow, especially from seeds. It’s exciting! I'm not expert but this is what I've learnt. More then anything, I've learnt to give it a go! 
Thank you Helen for having me over. You’re such a beautiful person and I’m so glad our paths crossed.
Have you got a garden? A balcony garden?
What would your tips be? 
Is this something you would try?
I hope you come by my blog and say hi! I'd love to get your know you!

Thanks for much for that lovely post Vanisha. Go and check out her blog everyone!

H xo

Holiday Time!

I apologise now as I'm not sure what this post is going to be like. I'm posting for the first time from my phone, as the internet isn't working where I am.
I'm in Scarborough at the moment and right next to the sea, which is beautiful if not a little cold.
I won't be posting for about a week, but I have lots of exciting posts for you when I can back, including a tutorial for this shabby dog keyring.
Over and out for now.
H xo


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