Yesterday I got some very sad news, a great family friend passed away after losing her battle against cancer.
Here she is with two of her three beautiful daughters.
I have thousands of memories of her and every single one of them has me crying with laughter. She was the funniest, warmest and most caring person I've ever been lucky enough to know.
She'll be greatly missed but will live on in the hearts of her family and friends.
The Hartlepool & District Hospice made this extremely difficult time, that little bit easier for her and her family. If you would like to make a donation please go to their website and click on donate. These fantastic places rely on charity as they get little to no government funding.
Being the woman of the house, this time of year tends to send me into a spin of stress and hot flushes!
This years Asda Christmas Advert sums it up fantastically, I'm sure all you women out there will be smiling and nodding all the way through!
Behind Every Great Christmas There's A Mum
But this year, with a new business and a toddler I've decided I can't take the extra stress, so instead of running round like a blue arsed fly, I'm gonna take it all in my stride and delegate! This year instead of the 20 odd I usually have for Christmas Dinner, there are only 5 of us. I will be hosting an in between Christmas and New Year Buffet on the 29th, but I'll be recruiting all hands in the kitchen for that one! I haven't chosen a theme nor am I going to try and out do last years deco theme, in fact I'm just going to re use everything from last year! Maybe this year I'll get to have a chilled out and merry christmas.
Maybe I should serve everyone this on Christmas Day
I might just do it for a laugh, just to see their faces!
In the mean time, let's have a look and some other people's Christmas efforts...
I stumbled across Positive Med's page on Facebook today and it's absolutely brilliant. As people are getting more and more pissed off with the crap the faceless food industry is putting into our foods and basically killing us. Positive Med gives you lots of great tips on how to live a healthier life.
Like their recipe for Baked Carrot and Sweet Potato Fries
1 sweet potato, washed and cut into 1/2 inch wide strips
6-8 carrots, washed and cut into 1/2 inch wide strips
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons dried herbs (try parsley, rosemary, or thyme)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Preheat oven at 400°F. Cut sweet potato and carrots into french fry strips. In a large baking sheet, toss carrots and sweet potatoes with olive oil, dried herbs and salt & pepper.
Arrange in a single layer and make sure to flip the fries over two or three times to brown evenly. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp. Serve with garlic aioli.
I love spaghetti but it does my head it because regardless of whether a add oil or butter to it it always sticks together. Well a friend of mine taught me the other day how to make spaghetti that will never stick, even once it's cooled down and refrigerated.
1. When the water comes to the boil add the spaghetti and stir.
2. Take off the heat and cover with a dry tea towel.
3. Place a tight fitting lid over the tea towel and pan.
4. Stir after 5 mins.
5. Leave to cook.
6. Drain and serve.
Would like to say a big congratulations to all the Mo Bros who've managed to raise £184 miliion over the last nine years to raise awareness and help fund programmes to beat prostate and testicular cancer.
A special congrats go out to my brother-in-law Geoff Phillips. Him and his team at Sage North Park, Newcastle upon Tyne have raised nearly £4000 so far! The final numbers will be in tomorrow.
Here he is with his Mo!
Tomorrow is the last day, when all the Mo Bros can finally have a shave and all the Mo Sistas can rejoice in the new unprickliness of their other halves.
If you would like to make a donation to Geoff, you still have a couple of hours left.