Making, Teaching, Talking, Growing – this year so far…

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At the end of January I was super smug at how I was doing against my 2018 goals “Learn Apply, Interact”, but we can all easily have a spurt of productivity and focus towards our New Year’s Resolution that early on.  The question is, at the end of February, am I still focused?  Have I learnt anything? Done anything with that knowledge and interacted with the right people and platforms to achieve my goals?

Well just in case you can’t be arsed to read any more, the short answer is YES!!!  And in the hope of enticing you to stick with it, here are some visuals to demonstrate some of this years successes so far…

Yes, I’ve been really proactive with my stained glass, making batches of glass hens, blue tits, daffodils, easter eggs and a couple of dragons…. OK, I haven’t finished the dragons but they’re cut and ready for the next phase.  Here’s one I made earlier…

Yes, I am officially offering AND DELIVERING stained glass teaching from my little home studio.  I’ve discovered it’s ideal for teaching on a one to one basis or up to 3 people at a time so it makes a great Mother and Daughter gift (thinking Mothers Day here people 😉 ); best friends break; or couples activity.  This mum and daughter had a fabulous time.  Get in touch if you want to book one – I may be offering deals and discounts to friends/ bloggers xx

home workshop no1

Yes, having hoped to do a bit of demoing /public speaking this year I happily have have two demos/talks to do for a couple of WI groups – first one is in 10 days time I shall be making daffodils out of glass before their very eyes!  Magic!

And yes, things are looking up on social media. My followings are improving. More importantly the interaction is going up… no point in having likers and followers if they never chat to you is there… I’m making some lovely friends through it and who knows where it will lead. This year so far I have 78 more twitter followers, 26 more blog followers; both around 15% increases but blog views per month have doubled since 2017 (based on monthly averages )…

My finally piece of positive news is the guest spot coming up on Deborah’s My Random Musings , Bloggers Corner Interview … goes live on 25th… so excited.  I love Deborahs’ blog and how she supports other bloggers and writers.

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However  I have been struggling….

On the learning front….

…I tried and tried and tried to get my head around my existing blog/websites for my B&B and decided I was just not techy enough.  I read loads of stuff about blogging and twitter and wordpress and tied myself in a knot of frustration and felt like I was drowning in all the information and my failure to process it.  In the end I put a shout out for help and am delighted to say that I had several offers of support.  Thanks to those who offered help and advice.  Particularly…..

Katy McKenzie of Something Different   is studying Film Production at Derby Uni and has her own successful Youtube channel.  She has offered to help me create a media pack… just chatting to her and tapping in to her enthusiasm was refreshing, it calmed me out of my panic straight away… who says the young can’t teach us oldies a few things!  I look forward to her technical insight .

Holistic health blogger  and freelance digital marketer, Petra Kravos of  Be Healthy Now, has taken me up on the offer of a skills swap… she’s going to help me with my tech and in return I will treat her to a weekend break with her partner here at our B&B…. can’t wait to meet her in person and to learn some new tricks.    I just hope I can impress her with my homemade veggie and vegan breakfast options 😉 … I know she’ll love the fresh air and landscape and the wonderful cycling routes just on our doorstep.

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I’m now very excited about the prospects of learning and developing my sites over the next month or so….

And just a quicky roundup of how I’m doing on my health and wellbeing goals…

I’ve lost a stone in weight, god knows where from as I still feel like I’m bursting out of bras and trousers in every direction but those scales don’t lie. I’m eating more healthily; have cut out all junk snack; feel more energised; am drinking loads more water; have not had any much alcohol (mums birthday and valentines); and I’ve walked into the village everyday occasionally instead of taking the car; basically its all heading in the right direction.

However….

… have failed on the weekly date days with Hubby (although we do snuggle together on the sofa every evening);  And I’ve barely made it to a dance/exercise class nor have I just danced for fun, although I have been practicing my belly rolls  …I’ll never get to this but I can remain inspired… an old woman girl can dream of being this fit can’t she

So how is your year going?  Did you set targets?  Have they fallen by the wayside? Perhaps there have been some surprises that have moved you in other directions? Would love to hear from you.

Shank You Very Much
DIY Daddy
Mission Mindfulness
My Random Musings

 

Low Carb Pizza – Yes, there really is such a thing!

Hubby decide that for the first quarter of 2018 he wanted to adopt a high protein and low carb/no carb diet; and beyond keep to a lower carb diet as he feels his body runs better with that combination.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s a challenging one for me as “head chef”.  A few years ago we both engaged in Dr & Dr Eades Lose Your Middle Aged Middle, eating plan.  It worked. We both lost several inches around our middles.

However, and here’s the biggie for me, the diet plan made us completely antisocial.  Not because of the bad breath you might obtain from living solely on protein… we were very careful about our oral hygiene; but because it made it almost impossible to go out socially.

By making a few tweaks to the diet to better encompass our lifestyle we did find a way. For example, in restaurants we could have ham egg and chips without the chips or a mixed grill again without the chips.  I recommend you ask the waiter to leave the chips off the plate altogether because its much tougher just to choose not to eat them when they’re there and smelling so damned good!

For Hubby it was a great diet, He loves nothing more than a high meat content meal.  He loves grilled bacon and fried eggs for breakfast every day.  He doesn’t have high cholesterol or blood pressure so that’s OK.  According to the doctor he’s fit as a fiddle (even for a man of his age 😉 )  He could even stomach the disgusting body builder high protein meal replacement drinks.  I, on the other hand would wretch at the smell of them so in the end I just didn’t bother with the shakes at all.

Overall the diet was successful, we didn’t feel hungry, we weren’t miserable and we both lost 1.5 – 2 stone.

Several years on our weights have exceeded our pre diet weights.  As with all diets, they just plain don’t work long-term.  UNLESS you can find dietary habits that fit your lifestyle and the new eating regime becomes your lifestyle choice.

We’re trying again.  John is back to high protein / low carb and I’ve taken from the Dr Eades book those recipes and tips that worked before and done my own thing for him.  For Hubby I cook up loads of interesting meat based or egg based meals and he can have as much cheese as he wants with those. So I make lots of creamy/cheesy sauces which he loves, and as long as he supplements his diet with potassium, magnesium and multivits, hes a happy bunny.

I decided I don’t do as well on high protein and low carb. I could do it short-term but it wouldn’t be sustainable for me.   I prefer veggie options quite often and would rather have no meats than all meats.  I struggle to give up fruit and salad and much of that is a no go if you are being a strict no carb dieter.

I’ve chosen to cut out cake/alcohol/chocolate and crisps. and drastically reduce my bread and cheese intake.  Funnily enough the only one I’m struggling with is crisps.  I crave them constantly.  I’ve replaced those with natural seeds and nuts and I salt those myself – it seems to (almost) satisfy my needs. I also discovered during the first diet that nuts and seed vary greatly in their carb/protein ratio .. i can’t have walnuts but i tend to stick to hazelnuts, almonds and pecan and add pumpkin seeds to the mix.

You have to read this

Very occasionally I crave chocolate but other than a couple of teeny treats. I’ve managed that too, even when I’ve had PMT (big high-five to me).  (BTW I cannot stand carob, it’s NOT an equivalent option in my opinion, I don’t care what anyone says!  I’d rather do without completely.  )

These days there so many great alternatives on the market and many of them can be bought in mainstream supermarkets.

This alternative to spaghetti is available in our local Aldi store. It has 6.6g of carb per 100g compared to 76g in standard durum wheat spaghetti, most importantly hubby likes it and it only takes 3 minutes to cook.  So I can stick to my normal whole-wheat spaghetti and make a bit of this for him.

Of course there are fresh veg options to spaghetti, which are really easy to prep yourself but can be bought pre prepared , for example courgetti (which I think is available in the fresh veg section of most supermarkets these days – but is a very expensive way of buying fresh veg #justsaying) .  Really easy to make yourself though.

I make hubby mashed cauliflower or cauliflower cheese to sit in place of potato on his plate.  But you can also rice cauliflower….and if that sounds like a lot of hassle you can even buy it ready done… (I got this in Tescos)

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Then there are all the alternative flours.  I bought The Groovy Food Organic Coconut Flour from Tescos in my home delivery.  Only 16g carb compared to plain flour at 81g

I bought it to make this Fat Head low carb pizza base with a recipe from Ditch the  Carbs.com (thanks Graham Miller for this link) thinking it would be a good alternative to almond flour (which Tescos didn’t have ).  Subsequently I’ve discovered this Sukrin sesame flour with only 6g carb (although it was in my local whole food shop Vans Good Foods  in Llandindod Wells; and it wasn’t cheap).

So how did the pizza go?…..

I doubled up the quantity as Hubby can easily eat a whole normal pizza to himself and I can usually manage with a bit of patience and persuasion.  However, these were so filling even though his was bigger than mine we each only managed half.

Basically you plonk the mozzarella, and flour in a bowl with the egg and lightly microwave and it will mix into a dough – ts hard to believe, its like a magic trick, I really didn’t expect to get a rollable dough but…

surprisingly it rolls out very easily

TAH DAH!!!

After that its simply a matter of cooking the base, 15 mins in a gas 7/225 degree oven, taking it out, adding your toppings of choice (pre-cooked especially meats), then popping them back for 5 more minutes.  Whats more, Hubby said he would happily eat it again.  I would too but I might try the coconut or almond flour, I did find it a tad over sesame-y.  Extremely filling though and lovely rustic looking.

five minutes further cooking with the topping on and voila!
serving suggestion 😉

Just so you know, this post is not affiliates or sponsored in any way.  I have tried the products purely for our own health wellbeing and my views on the outcome and mine alone – as they would be even if someone were to ask me to review something (which I am more than happy to do #hinthint 😉 

My Random Musings

Letters to my Daughter

Life: Mine: It’s full: Very full

15016351_1247664865307784_3338542209251484497_oI’m a woman.  I’m self-employed.  I’m fairly ‘alternative’ and, am told, slightly ‘eccentric’.  I wear many hats.  Not all suit me…

Life gets confusing and chaotic……

Here’s perhaps why….

13912605_1298769933474183_1529318925936773135_n???????????????????????????????I’m an artist, I occasionally do pet portraits, I often do stained glass commissions. I do have an Etsy shop, which I manage in a very ad hoc way.  I promise to keep a stock of my designs but the artistic bit of me is really only interested in the bespoke commissions and one-off designs , so I struggle to find time to hold stock.  So I make my designs to order.

20170322_123236I teach stained glass.  It’s a new string to my bow.  I love it.  I find it immensely satisfying and it brings me huge amount of joy.

I run a B&B.  This involves being really nice to (mostly) lovely people, talking (a lot), keeping the place clean, ironing sheets (even though I’d never iron my own) and cooking really gorgeous breakfasts.  I do this with my hubby.  We love working together.  It works.  Coming to stay at Cerdyn Villa is like staying with friends (so we’re told) and that, my lovelies was the plan so things her are going well

breakfast

I manage our business website and various tourism pages on social media.  Some of these pages… “www.cerdynvilla.wales” is our lifestyle hub (ooo fancy!), it leads you off to “Pink Butterfly Art and Glass” – my Etsy shop; “Pink Butterfly at Cerdyn Villa” -our FB page combining our B&B and my art; http://www.cerdynvilla.co.uk – our B&B website; “rose-tinted Ramblings” – my blog; “Home of Bog Snorkelling” – the tourism FB page for our town; “@Berni_Benton” – my twitter account

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m a gardener – I look after six people’s gardens.  Mostly elderly ladies, some of whom like to garden with me and its as much about the company as the weeding and pruning.  I LOVE weeding (does that make me odd?  I don’t care, I LOVE IT!)

peanut butter cheesecakeI work shifts in the local cafe and cover for the owners if they go away.  Sometimes I even bake some cakes!

I blog.  For fun, but mainly to keep me sane and promote my work(s) (not necessarily at the same time). Its called Rose Tinted Rambling, but you know that because you are here now.  It’s mainly a brain dumping ground.  Most thoughts evolve whilst I’m either ironing or weeding and I can’t rest until they’re typed.  So there! I try to categorise to avoid you haven’t to read the ‘boring shit’  but I’d say there’s pretty much something for everyone here.

I  advocate for a local elderly lady and manage her finances. It’s my ‘pay-it-forward” – we should all have one.  It’s great to give back.

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I volunteer, Working to help run the weird and wacky events in Llanwrtyd – I am the commentator at the World Bog Snorkelling and Man v Horse.  They gave me the job because, and I quote “if the PA system breaks I’d still be loud enough for everyone to hear”.  Hubby said he could hear me from the house last year and I was three-quarters  of a mile away….

… I hasten to add the mic was working that day.

I am responsible for keeping our household accounts.  Although hubby takes my figures and does the scary bit of filling in the returns and sending them off

I do all the food shopping, planning and feeding. Sometimes I do this well.  Other times we eat out!

I ‘manage’ a tenanted house with 5 flats.  Not for fun, at all, but because the landlords were neighbours but now live in Spain.

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We keep hens, that means they have a house that needs cleaning

11182523_1594413547510404_4888338233642762611_oI’m a mum………

………………………………………….

……..in my spare time (!!)

I do a bit of yoga and belly dancing

a vision in red

I look after my own garden (sometimes I get dressed before I start)

11168862_1046829525379356_5330321855820313332_oI’m a member of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party (say hello to Lady Lily the Pink).  I even stood for the Welsh Assembly

I soak in a bubble bath

I enjoy a good live band

I read the occasional book.  mostly I read blogs  and watch TED talks

I snuggle on the sofa with my Hubby and watch Netflix

I play board games with my boy(s) – son and hubby

I eat out with friends

I eat in with friends

I drink out with friends

I drink in with friends

Sometimes I just drink…….

I love my life, but planning is difficult.  Impossible actually.  So it appears chaotic.  and sometimes it really is.  It also appears disorganised.  But actually it rarely is.  ….

….it just feels it

Logistically its a massive challenge.  It’s so far removed from the 9-5 life I used to lead.  I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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