Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Tuesday's Kitchen Homemade Sausage Rolls

This week I want to share with you the most simple recipe for sausage rolls which I made for my oldest son's birthday a few weeks ago.

Everybody loved them and kept asking where I bought them so I think it's fair to say that once you have made your own you won't want to buy one again.

It's quick and easy using ready made puff pastry and sausage meat with a few extra bits to transform the flavour.

I think the combination of flavours you could add are endless but I was mindful of smaller children who can sometimes be a bit fussy.


Sausage Meat
Ready Made Puff Pastry Sheets
1 Clove Garlic finely chopped
1 Small Onion finely chopped
2 Teaspoons Mixed Herbs
Salt and Black Pepper to season
Beaten egg or milk


1. Preheat the oven to 220ºC/425ºF/Gas 7

2. Place your sausage meat into a large bowl along with the chopped garlic, onion and herbs.

3. Add some salt and pepper to season and mix everything together with your hands.

4. Lightly flour your work surface and unroll out the ready made pastry.

5. Cut the sheet of pastry in half.

6. Divide the sausage meat in two and roll each piece into a sausage shape.

7. Place the sausage meat down the middle of the pastry and wash over the edge of the pastry
 with the beaten egg or milk and fold it over - the beaten egg or milk will make sure that the edges stick together.

8. Next brush over the whole length of pastry with the beaten egg and then divide into small rolls - you should get about 8 good sized sausage rolls from each piece.

9. Place in the oven and bake for about 20 mins until the pastry is golden and the sausage meat is cooked through.

10. These are lovely on their own, or served with pickle, mustard, tomato ketchup.

Homemade Sausage Rolls

Homemade Sausage Rolls

Homemade Sausage Rolls

I'm linking in with Townsend House What I am Eating click on the link to have a look at what everybody else is eating this week.

Monday, 27 May 2013

The Garden Show

This past weekend was so busy in our house it went past in a blur.

Our Teen headed off on Saturday morning to a youth festival in Co Longford which was great 'craic' altogether. I'm still catching up on all the gossip from that.

Our Inbetweener was busy playing gaelic and hurling on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and I was helping out at the Relay for Life event on Saturday and Sunday.

We did manage to squeeze in some time together on Saturday morning minus our Teen when we went to the Northwest Garden Show which is held in Castlefinn not far from where we live.

It was a lovely morning spent wandering around the show gardens, farmers market, exhibitors stalls and craft stalls.

It's encouraging to see a local event like this being so well supported by the local community and it's great to find exhibitors of lovely crafts and food producers that you wouldn't otherwise have known about.

There was so much to take in but here are some of my favourite photos, especially the one of our Inbetweener who has a Golden Eagle planted on head.

It was amazing to get up close and personal with such a beautiful creature.

Northwest Garden Show 2013

Northwest Garden Show 2013

Northwest Garden Show 2013

These are some photos of The White House Garden which was created by a number of Irish Gardeners including Diarmuid Gavin.

Even though the garden is not fully completed you can see that it will be stunning and great asset to have here in Donegal once it's fully completed.

The traditional stone walled garden is a symbol of our heritage and the close links held with America down through the years.

Northwest Garden Show 2013

All in all we had a busy but great weekend.

Hope yours was just as good xx

 Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall 

Friday, 24 May 2013

Relay for Life

The Relay for Life started in America in the 1980's and last year Donegal held it's first one. The events which are now global involve a 24 hour walking relay for which people raise funds in support of the fight against cancer.

This is a great way to celebrate the lives of those who have battled against cancer, remember those who have lost their fight against cancer and those who are fighting cancer.

Last year I was asked by a work colleague to help out at this event and I didn't hesitate to say yes because we all know someone who has been affected in some way by this illness and it's good to give something back no matter how small.

Relay for Life 2013

You can check out the website here and there is some video footage from last years hugely successful event.

In 2008 my mother was diagnosed with cancer. I will never forget that day when my father phoned me to tell me the news. I felt like someone had ripped my heart out of my chest and if he had told me she had died I couldn't have felt grief like it, it sounds silly now that I'm writing it but I can't think of any other way to explain it.

It makes you see life from a whole different perspective and appreciate what you have so much more.

Thankfully my mother survived and is doing well.

This year again I will be dedicating some time over Saturday and Sunday to help out at this inspiring event.

One thing that sticks out in my mind from last year was the overwhelming support and the amount of people who were wearing purple t-shirts were all survivors of cancer, it was staggering, all ages from children right up to elderly.

One of the highlights of the Relay for Life event is the Candle of Hope ceremony which will take place on Saturday night.

This is where people who have been affected by cancer and those who have lost their battle with cancer are honoured. The candles are lit and each one bears the name of a person touched by cancer and a lap of silence is completed to remember and take time to reflect.

You can see last years ceremony here and I think you will agree that it is deeply moving.

So yesterday I received an email notification that Suzanne from 3 Children and It is hosting a blog hop in support of Emma from Crazy with Twins who is in hospital and undergoing cancer treatment.

The timing of this post is appropriate because I was putting it on my blog today. Whilst I don't know Emma but I read her blog I have bought a candle especially for her and it will be lit in her honour tomorrow night and the Candle of Hope ceremony. 

Each candle is numbered and this one below has Emma's name on it.

Relay for Life 2013

I will be keeping her in my thoughts and wishing her a speedy recovery back to her family.

She is an inspiration to all of us.

Shoulder to Shoulder to Day

- See more at: http://www.3childrenandit.com/2013/05/for-emma-s2s2d.html#sthash.6ESyZSoh.dpuf 

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Dip Hem Top

I've seen loads of lovely lightweight knits in the shops this past few weeks and I'm loving this look at the minute for a host of reasons.

First of all it hides a multitude of sins for someone who has just had a baby, it's comfortable, effortless and great for lounging about in.

This is the type of piece that you can wear all year round - you can layer it up and have a snuggle in front of a winter fire or on it's own it's cool enough to wear for a summer picnic.

I picked this up in New Look last week in Pale Grey, it's also available in Mint Green, Pale Blue and Baby Pink. 

It's just the thing to merge slouchy and chic.

New Look - Wednesday Fashion and Beauty Spot
What's your thoughts?

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Our 8 Month Round Up

On Saturday our Little Fella turned eight months old.

He really is growing up too fast and each day that passes he is getting to be more and more fun.

8 Month Round Up

His hair is really starting to grow now and it's hard to tell what colour it's going to be as it seems to change with different light but I'm sure it's going to be dark.

8 Month Round Up

We brought down the baby walker from the attic last week and he absolutely loves his new found freedom.

Moving backwards and banging into doors (the louder the better) is totally hilarious to him.

8 Month Round Up

When he lies on his tummy he tries so hard to get moving but as of yet he cannot co-ordinate legs and arms. We'll keep trying though.

He loves his new teddy friend Chip or maybe it's just his shoes and labels.

Learning how to wave and clap hands is so much fun.

He still has two teeth but there's a third due any day now.

8 Month Round Up

He continues to be amazed by his hands getting so much amusement out of them.

We have lots of tickles hidden away at the top of our leg, feet and tummy. 

Our home is filled with squeals of delight.

He loves to pull his hat off when we are going out even though it's still so cold here.

8 Month Round Up

He likes to pull hair and moves with great speed and accuracy to get you at the roots where it hurts most.

He is amazing and whilst I wonder where the last eight months have gone I am looking forward to the next few weeks to see what they bring.


Monday, 20 May 2013

Day Trip to Sliabh Liag, Glencolmcille & Ardara

Once again on Saturday morning we headed off on our monthly trip around our beautiful countryside. The weather was atrocious but it didn't put us off.

The whole day was wonderful. 

Despite getting soaked through to our skin and our hair was completely standing on us on the way home it reminded me that there is so much joy in happy and fun times spent with family and life is good.

I really hope that our children will look back with fond memories of our days spent driving along the countryside, singing whatever songs came on the radio, laughing, exploring our surroundings.

Our first stop was the breathtaking cliffs of Slieve League (Sliabh Liag in Irish). The cliffs here are twice as high as the Cliffs of Moher in Co Clare. Sliabh Liag is a must visit for lovers of nature and the great outdoors if you are ever in Donegal.

This is a place of unbelievable natural beauty and the restless Atlantic ocean can be heard crashing against the cliffs below.

Clean, crisp air, nature in it's rawest form.

Day Trip 2013 Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Day Trip 2013 May Sliabh Liag

Down the winding road again we headed for Glencolmcille and the Folk Village Museum.

The Museum was founded by Fr James McDyer in an attempt to generate tourism to a remote and rural part of the country and is hugely successful bringing in over 30,000 visitors per year.

It was impressive to have a look through the visitor book and see people from all over the world who had been in the past few weeks and really appreciated what they had found. 

The Folk Museum is a fantastic cluster of cottages depicting lives of the local people over a period of three hundred years. I've always loved history and I think it's important to teach our children and remember ourselves the hardships encountered by our ancestors.

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 May Glencolmcille

Day Trip 2013 Glencolmcille

By this stage we had worked up a hunger so we had another short drive to Ardara for a spot of lunch at the Nesbitt Arms Hotel taking in the beautiful scenery along the way through Glengesh Pass.

The Nesbitt Arms is an excellent family run hotel and child friendly which is a very important factor to us with the Little Fella. 

We had a lovely relaxed lunch and dessert all served up by a very attentive staff.

There we decided to seek out the Assarancagh Waterfall. None of us had ever heard of it before but we saw a photo in the Folk Village and when the waitress said it was a must see we thought we would look it up.

We set off outside Ardara and down a narrow winding road towards Maghera beach. 

The only word that comes into my head when we came around the corner and saw the waterfall was 'Wow'.

Because of the rainfall the water was thundering down the mountain at ferocious speed. It was amazing and a great way to round off our day.

Day Trip 2013 Ardara

Day Trip 2013 May

With places like this on your doorstep I'm so glad we ventured out in the wind and rain. It really isn't a bad way to spend a Saturday and revive yourself after a long week. 

Hope your weekend was great xxx

 Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall 

Friday, 17 May 2013

Photo of the Week

This week we've have been busy spring cleaning inside as we haven't been able to get out and about as much as usual with all the rain, hailstones and wind.

I don't feel as organised as I normally am and I have lots of half finished posts for my blog which has been slightly neglected.

That being said I did get up early two mornings this week to go out for a jog in my attempt to get fit again, it wasn't pleasant but I'm hoping next week will be better.

I'm really looking forward to this weekend because we are off on another adventure tomorrow around our county, where we are going hasn't been decided yet but we will make a decision in the car tomorrow morning. 

All of a sudden today a blue sky and some sunshine has appeared. It's nice to step outside your door and feel warm rays of sun on your skin. The tiredness that has been hanging over me all week is starting to lift.

I'm hoping that the sun will remain until at least Sunday evening because our Teen is taking part in a community clean up on Sunday.

Tomorrow our Little Fella will be eight months old, I will have a whole post dedicated on this but for now this is my photo of the week.

Hoping your weekend is great xxx

Photo of the Week

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Soap & Glory Hand Food

I go through lots of hand creams because I have very dry skin and I've tried so many different kinds - expensive ones, cheap ones, the lot. 

Sometimes my hands can be so dry the skin actually cracks and stings.

This lovely hand cream from Soap & Glory is just fabulous and one of my new favourites. I don't know how long it's been on the go probably ages but I have only recently discovered it.

I love the name 'Hand Food' and the retro pink packaging.

The cream is nicely formulated and provides instant relief to dry skin leaving your hands feeling super soft and nourished.

It smells great and it doesn't leave your hands feeling sticky or greasy.

Available from Boots and priced for as little as £5 for 125ml you get a really decent hand moisturising cream that's not going to break the bank and last ages.

I'm looking forward to trying out some of their other products.

Have you tried this or any other Soap & Glory products that you can recommend?

Wednesday Fashion & Beauty Spot

Wednesday Fashion & Beauty Spot

Wednesday Fashion & Beauty Spot

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Tuesday's Kitchen Cupcakes

As you know last week our Inbetweener turned eight years old( Birthday Celebrations).

I was busy all day last Tuesday baking and cooking for our little get together and one of the things I made was cupcakes.

So many people are making cupcakes these days and they really are so easy, that being said I'm not the best baker but I try my best.

Here is my recipe and I also used the same mixture to make up the birthday cake. 

This recipe will make 12 cupcakes and  they went down a storm.

Tuesday's Kitchen


150g Butter
150g Caster Sugar
150g Self Raising Flour
2 Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Essence
2/3 Tablespoons of Milk

For the Buttercream Icing:

75g Butter
125g Icing Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Essence


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas4 and line a standard muffin tin with your paper cases.
2. Beat the butter, sugar, flour, milk and eggs together. I used an electric mixer but you can also use a wooden spoon like I normally do, just make sure your butter and eggs are at room temperature.
3. Beat the mixture until smooth and pale, then divide between the paper cases.
4. Bake in the oven for 20 mins, or until golden and remove to a wire tray to cool.
5. At this stage you can make up the buttercream icing, place all the ingredients together and mix with either a wooden spoon or electric mixer.
6. Once the cupcakes are cooled you can ice them, I used a palette knife to save on time but you can pipe it on for a cleaner finish.
7. Decorate as you wish, we used coloured candy discs chosen by the birthday boy himself.

Monday, 13 May 2013

A Very Happy Birthday

Last Tuesday our Inbetweener celebrated his 8th Birthday (Birthday Boy).

As tradition in our family we started the day by singing happy birthday before he was out of bed and he had his favourite breakfast - boiled egg, toast and tea complete with candle.

We had a small party with family at home on Tuesday evening and then he had a few friends on Saturday to a local bowling centre.

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

We all had a lovely time and the man himself our Inbetweener was chuffed to bits.

I was very busy all day preparing a birthday cake (which tasted much better than it looked), cupcakes, homemade sausage rolls, vol-au-vents and sandwiches. There was hardly anything left over which makes me happy and it was worth the effort.

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

It was so nice just having our own family around us to celebrate our Inbetweener turning eight years old, it feels like only yesterday that he was so small like our Little Fella is now.

This year was the first time we didn't have loads of children to a birthday party and it was quite strange so we arranged the party just a few weeks ago and booked a local place called Arena 7 in Letterkenny.

He decided himself that he would ask his four closest friends to go bowling and not have the usual big party.

A sure sign that he is growing up fast.

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

They have a lovely VIP room with bowling lanes, pool table and air hockey game complete with a jukebox for your own private use and they supply the food as well - cocktail sausages, onion rings, chicken nuggets and chips with drinks all round and tea/coffee for mum and dad. The portions were just right and we couldn't eat another bite for the rest of the day, plus I got to go home to a clean house.

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

A Very Happy Birthday

What 8 year old wouldn't be happy with that!

In a way we had two celebrations and they were both great. 
We have our beautiful Inbetweener who is now eight years old and everybody who knows him loves him dearly. 

He makes us very proud of him and I'm glad we were able to give him a party to remember.

A Very Happy Birthday