Blog > Category: Lifestyle
Whenever I make up a batch of these oatmeal raisin and chocolate chip cookies they never last long in our house. Milk and a biscuit before bedtime is a big childhood memory of mine. Ok, I still have a mug of milk and a biscuit before bed now, but often it’s something I’ve made myself and I feel happier eating one of these cookies as they are a bit healthier with the oatmeal.
The cookies are so easy to make, basically just combine all the dry ingredients and then add the egg and butter, make into balls and bake. They taste delicious a few minutes out of the oven once they have cooled slightly but also make a great treat in a lunch box for children at school….or in our house, husbands for work.
You’ll get around 20 Oatmeal, Raisin and Chocolate Chip cookies from this mixture depending on what size you want to make.
You are going to need:
1 1/3 cups of plain flour (all purpose flour)
1tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1cup of porridge oats
3/4 cup raisins
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup flaked almonds (if you want nut free cookies, substitute the almonds with sultanas)
1tsp vanilla essence
1/2 cup slightly melted butter
This is what you need to do…
- Preheat your oven to 180C (Gas 4), grease and line a couple of baking trays. If you only have one tray then you will need to bake in two batches.
- In a big bowl, measure out and combine all of the dry ingredients. Basically everything in the list above down to almonds. I just use a big metal spoon as find it easier to mix well than using an electric mixer.
- In a cup lightly whisk the egg, then add it to the mixture and give a good stir.
- Add in the vanilla essence and slightly melted butter and stir well to make the dough, it will take a bit of work.
- Divide the dough into balls around 5cm and place on the baking tray, don’t have them too close or they will merge into one giant cookie when baking.
- Pop in the oven and bake for around 12mins until golden, then place on a cooking rack and cover until cool – how long can you resit tasting one?
I think July 2016 needs to be regarded as the month of cake! Life lately has been hectic to say the least, we are progressing with our house renovation but now my parents are moving closer to us (SO excited!) and I have had to put creating new things for Butterfly Crafts on pause for a little while. With life being a bit busy I think I have consciously tried to be a bit kinder to myself this month and take time out.
Paul and I went for a delicious afternoon tea at The Old Barn in Wadenhoe. It was the July envelope for his first anniversary gift and we really enjoyed an afternoon out. We would both recommend afternoon tea at The Old Barn, so many sandwiches and cakes to eat in really pretty surroundings.
My love of stationery has been progressing this month too. I ‘won’ a bumper jiffy bag of washi tapes in a giveaway, bought some gorgeous stickers for my planner and discovered some super pretty stationery in Sainburys and blogged about my haul. If you love planners and stickers come and say hello over on my stationery Instagram account Butterfly Plans.
I absolutely love flowers and try to have a vase of them when ever I can. I particularly love carnations but am drawn to most flowers that are purple or lilac in colour. I really love these lisianthus too. I’m working on an online flower arranging course at the moment to help improve my arranging skills, I’ll share more photos at the end.
I took an afternoon out to learn all about iPhoneography at a workshop run by Shutter Hub and Me & Orla. It was great to spend a couple of hours with fellow creatives in Cambridge and pick up some tips. I blogged about the workshop and shared some of the iPhoneography tips learned.
I did find room for a little crafting as there have been birthdays for a few family and friends in July. I was so happy with how this card turned out and the recipient really liked it. If you want to see some more peaks behind the scenes at what I’m crafting some and say hello on my Butterfly Crafts Instagram.
So that was July 2016. It doesn’t feel like much here, but it’s been a very busy month away from Butterfly Crafts which I think has been good for my soul! August us set to be super busy too. Maybe I need another cookie….
The end of term is fast approaching with most schools breaking up in a couple of weeks time, maybe you’re all organised and already have your teacher thank you gifts sorted but if not here are a few suggestions of what the teachers in your life might like to receive as an end of term thank you gift.
Super Cute Felt Owls by Butterfly Crafts
A6 Notebook Trio by OhNoRachio
Natural Handmade Soap Bars by Butterfly Crafts
Hand Stamped Personalised Key Chain by LaurieBale
Fabric Bow Handmade Brooch Pin by Butterfly Crafts
Cuppa Cards make perfect Teacher Thank You Cards by Butterfly Crafts
I hope these will help with a little inspiration for what to gift a teacher at the end of a busy term – or even buy ahead ready for Christmas!
Just like May, June has flown by in a blink of an eye, but oh my what an exciting month it has been, there has been fun, travel lots in between.
I knew that June was going to be a super busy month and so I wanted to start off on the right foot with the husband and we went off to Norwich for the day for a treasure hunt, I just loved these colourful market stalls! This was part of our first wedding anniversary gifts which you can read about here.
The month also ended on a travel theme with an amazing trip to Iceland. It was bloomin cold not getting much higher than 10c but the scenery was astounding, waterfalls, volcanos, mountains and lupins. Oh the lupins. I got to practice my photo jumping!
The days off continued with a great visit to Gardeners World Live with Mum, it was my first time at the show, have you been? I would definitely recommend it if you have a garden, or even just a window box. Just look at that pink tool shed.
Image Courtesy of Mollie Makes © Will Ireland
Where do I start talking about Blogtacular? Aside from Iceland, I think Blogtacular would be the highlight of June. I am still processing the day in my head, the people I met, the inspiring talks I got to listen to and the ideas that came from it all. I wrote my first post, 5 Tips To Help Prepare For A Conference If You’re Anxious, and there will be a couple more to come later this month.
In preparation for Blogtacular I got busy in the Craft Room and made up some very special tags to give out with my business cards. I just love this Kitchen Aid inspired stamp and I have plans for it in the future, watch this space.
Badges and pins are having a huge rise in popularity, I remember they were when I was at school as I covered my bag in them! I’ve started my collection with these from (L-r) Sew Crafty, JillyJilly and OhNoRachio. Have you started to collect pins? I’d love to see what they are.
June also saw me feed my stationery addiction with a few new purchases. Heading into London for Blogtacular meant we just HAD to visit KikkiK and I picked up a box of adorable quote cards and a set of pens. My love of Erin Condren has also expanded with a new sticker book and just look at the pretty hearts on my new planner – this one is for 2017 so I have to wait a little while to use it. Sob.
How was June for you? Did you discover any new indie stores or go on any adventures? I look forward to telling you all about July and then it’s my birthday!
Fathers Day is fast approaching and so if you haven’t already, it’s time to think about a gift and a card for your Dad. I thought it would be fun to share a few gift ideas that I have found for your Dad or the Father figure in your life.
If your Dad is the DIY kind then how lovely is this Personalised screwdriver set from Auntiemims on Etsy.
How adorable Personalised Cufflink Dish from DianaParkhouse on Etsy
I love the quirkyness of the parenting T-shirts from Parent Apparel
Perfect gift for a biscuit lover Dad – Biscuit cushions from Nikki McWilliams
And don’t forget about a Father’s Day card either. A handmade card is a personal touch for your Dad, I have card designs for gardeners, car enthusiasts, a good fry up and more. Take a look in the Fathers Day Card category in the online shop.
If you get really short of time, or you have children and need ideas for something for them to give their Dad, why not get crafting? This Fathers Day board on Pinterest has lots of ideas to try out too, take a look.
Monthly subscription boxes are really popular at the moment, you can get stationery boxes, lucky dip boxes, craft boxes – so much choice. When Sarah from Pocket and Pin launched the monthly Habdash box I knew that it was the box for me.
Each month a lovely little box arrives on your doorstep filled with crafty goodness, there are no instructions or ideas of what to make so you can use your own imagination, or if you’re like me, spend ages just looking at the pretty felt bundle!
The boxes are themed each month and contents do vary slightly from month to month but on a general basis you will receive a bundle of six felt pieces all in complimentary colours, buttons, a wooden bobbin wound with embroidery thread, ribbon and a fat quarter. The contents are wrapped in tissue and the box is tied with twine which I reuse for packing up my orders.
There are a few options for purchasing boxes, you can give a one of box a try for £15 including postage (international is £21), or you can buy a three, six or twelve month subscriptions which include a bit of a discount. If you have a crafty friend then you can buy a gift subscription too.
All the pictures so far have been from the April box, but here are some more from previous themed months, just indulge me at sharing pretty felt and fabric!
What I love about the Habdash box is that it includes felt, buttons and fabric. Enough said? But aside from that, you are completely left to make up whatever you like with the contents, be it patchwork with the fabric, embroidery, or fun animals with the felt. You can search the #habdash hashtag on Instagram for seeing what other people make with their goodies. If you love sewing and felt or fabric crafts then why not give it a try, I’d love to see what you make.
**I was not asked or paid for this review, I did win a three month subscription but have purchased other boxes**
May seems to have flown by in the blink of an eye. Paul and I have recently been on holiday to France and I always find when there is a holiday in a month the time goes so fast as in the run up to the holiday you are all focused on that and what you need to pack, or get done before you can relax.
The month started with the Spring Gift and Craft Fair at Burgess Hall in St Ives, it was a busy fair and I am looking forward to the Christmas one – November 27th!
Before the holiday I filled up two categories in the online card shop – Fathers Day cards and the ever-popular Cuppa Cards – send a handmade card to a loved one and they will remember it, it shows care and attention and may just include a cuppa tea!
If you follow me on Instagram you will see that I am working on my 115 pillowcase dress challenge – sewing up one pillowcase dress for every person invited to our wedding and donating them to Dress A Girl Around the World. I made up five more dresses in May, but then my beloved Janome decided to throw a hissy fit and so it now needs repairing.
I treat myself to a beautiful new camera too, I have been pining over the Olympus PEN E-PL7 for quite a while but there has been a stock shortage in the UK recently. I managed to locate one in white and snapped it up. Isn’t it pretty!
It was lovely to have a super sunny weekend to get outside and tackle some of the garden. We have a *big* garden, its 50ft x 100ft just from the back of the house. Im definitely what you would call a beginner gardener and I do find it most overwhelming at times, but with the sun shining, it was great to get out there for a few hours weeding and cutting things back before our first BBQ of the year.
It was so good to get away to France, we were both starting to feel really burnt out in the run up to our trip what with working, house renovations and various life things! In France we stayed at Les Alicourts, close to Pierrefitte-sur-Sauldre, we didn’t do too much to be honest, lots of walks around the lake, visited Chateau Chambord and the Zoo du Beauval. Lots of magazines were read, blogs planned and quite a few West Wing episodes watched (how am I only now just watching West Wing!)
How was your May? I hope like me you are looking forward to the summer months ahead.
Yes I know, it’s already ten days into May and I am only just updating on how April was. But, the latter part of April has been super busy so bear with me! I thought I would spend a little time today sharing how April was so here is my latest ‘Life Lately’ post.
Yes I had to start the month with delicious cake! I took Mum away for a weekend to Norfolk to have a bit of a break and do some crafting, it was so nice to have a weekend away. On our return we popped into Harriets in Bury St Edmunds for lunch and delicious cheesecake treats. I highly recommend.
April saw a lot of creating and crafting in preparation for a craft fair in May. My Cuppa Cards are always really popular and I needed to get a lot made. I love making these cards and colouring in is always relaxing! I have also been adding to my stock of handmade greetings cards to stock up a shop I supply with handmade cards.
I have added to my washi tape collection with these gorgeous rolls from Mrs Brimbles. I love the pink chevron pattern but just look at that glitter!
I’ve added to my collection of Distress Inks by Tim Holtz for Ranger. These are the ink pads I turn to for a lot of stamping and also colouring in images with a water brush. See how I created a Distress Inks colour chart in this blog post.
I travelled all the way to Birmingham to meet the lovely Allison Sadler for a business mentoring session. I have followed Allison on Instagram for a while now and it was lovely to have the chance to meet her (and MrC!) at People shop and spend a good session talking all things creative business and look at how pretty her studio space is!
Following the session with Allison, one of the first things I did was order a new stamp from The English Stamp Company. I have always stamped the reverse of my cards with a branded stamp but it never truly matched my business branding. I have been recommended The English Stamp Company and was so impressed with the turn around time and accuracy of the design I created.
How was April for you? Did you treat yourself to any lovely new craft products or did you get to create something lovely? I’d love to hear about it.
If you are a user of Instagram then you may have seen various challenges that do the rounds, the idea is you have a prompt and share a photo a day for that prompt. I have seen many challenges but none have appealed to me as much as #MarchMeetTheMaker organised by Joanne Hawker.
The idea behind this challenge is to give an insight into the face behind the business, what goes on behind the scenes and to tell the story of what goes into making and running a creative business.
I’ve really enjoyed this challenge as a way to focus my thoughts on Butterfly Crafts but also a brilliant way to discover lots of new creative businesses and to hear the stories and see the faces behind them. If you’re not an Instagram user don’t worry, you can see the photos I have posted in this Facebook Album.
These are the prompts that we were given at the start of the month and if you search the #MarchMeetTheMaker hash tag over on Instagram then you will find lots of lovely creative businesses that took part.
When we went to Australia on our honeymoon back in 2014 I totally fell in love with the lifestyle and stationery brand Kikki K (I wrote about my Kikki K Australia haul in this post). You can imagine my excitement when not one, but two stores opened up in London at the end of 2015. Last week we were in London for a trip to the Ideal Home Show and I just had to make the most of the train fare (how much???) and make a visit to treat myself a little.
Im not a tea drinker but I have a thing about tea pots. When I saw the new Svenska Hem Homewares Collection released in March I totally adored the tea pot and knew it needed to be added to my collection. It’s a pot for two cups and isn’t it adorable? There are a couple of different tea cup options in the collection and I loved this one with the little saucer as it matches in with the pattern on the pot. I have to say, I’m really impressed with the quality of the homewares range and I can see me adding to my collection in the future.
A trip to Kikki K is nothing without a stationery purchase! The quality of the notebooks and journals are great and although I could always do with another in my life I managed to side step them on this trip and instead headed straight to the stickers! My eye was drawn to the Inspiration Sticker Book because look at how pretty the gold and peach cover is! In total there are 140 tags and stickers which will be great for use in my planner when I get organised, and to use the tags on gifts and presents – the gold foiling is lovely. These are just a couple of the sticker pages….
Having a good browse around the store I definitely spied a few products to add to my wishlist for the near future. I really like the look of the gratitude journal as a way to record what you are thankful for each day; the Write Your Tomorrow Quote Cards would be a great additional to my office space or a shelf in the craft room; and finally the Write Your Tomorrow Sticker Book would provide even more beautiful stickers for my planning sessions.
Have you discovered Kikki K yet, if so what have your purchased I’d love to hear about it. If you’re in London and near Covent Garden then I definitely recommend a visit to one of the stores, but you can also order online so you don’t miss out.