Pancake Day

Today is Pancake Day and we went to see the Pancake race at Liverpool Parish Church. It wasn’t as exciting as we’ve been expecting to because there were only 2 contestants, but it was fun and I learned there is a racing pancake. Unlike the standard pancake that you can eat, the racing pancake is made with more flour, so it’s heavier.

03 Pancake race

04 Pancake race

01 Pancake race

We obviously had crepes. A couple of them filled with mushrooms and one with preserve for dessert.

02 Pancake race

Do you celebrate Pancake Day?

The Philharmonic Dining Rooms

Yesterday, my husband and I went to The Philharmonic Dining Rooms. Everybody that wants to visit Liverpool would have heard about The Phil. The pub was commissioned in the late Victorian period, 1889-1900, made to resemble a Gentleman’s Club and it was the most ornate pub in England. It’s a Grade II listed building and it’s beautiful.

We went after lunch time and it was so busy that we weren’t able to take a lot of pictures in the pub. It’s not a surprise, considering that it was the place where the Beatles were going for a drink. It is believed that John Lennon said “The worst part of being famous is not being able to pop into the Phil for a quiet pint”.

 The Philharmonic Dining Rooms

The weather was lovely yesterday, the sun was shining and it was warm too.

 The Philharmonic Dining Rooms

As I mentioned, it was so busy yesterday. The Phil is between the two cathedrals, very close to the city center and, as the name suggests, it’s near the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.

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Makeup organizer

This month’s review is less a review and more of an idea, just because the make up organizer I have sold out in shops. I got it from B&M. Similar one can be found online though, at Home Bargains for £5. I wasn’t sure if it will be of good quality as it has a low price. In the end, I was so happy with it and I end up buying two.

Makeup organizer

I got the first one a few months ago. It was a little bigger than I wanted but it fit in a cabinet and I had to rearrange a few things to make space for it. I have enough space for everything I need to store in it and there is still a little bit of space left for anything else I might decide to get and use.
I used to keep my nail polish in my bedside table. Some of the makeup was in the bathroom and the rest in a drawer. Now that I have everything in one location is great. I keep in the bathroom only the makeup remover and, of course, the cleansing products, like face wash, lotion, masks. Because I moved all the makeup in the bedroom, now I can see and use easily the things I have in the bathroom. The samples and new items are kept in my bedside table until I decide to use them.

After having it for a couple of months, I bought another one for the caravan.

Makeup organizer

In the caravan, the makeup organizer, was a life saver. I have a traveling makeup bag that I’m using, but it’s so much easier to have all the makeup and cosmetics within easy reach when I’m looking for them. Before having the makeup organizer I used some glasses for the toothbrushes. I found that in the caravan, the makeup organizer was even more important as I keep there all the cosmetics and stuff for my hair too. As you can see, the organizer has more things in it, as I have there the shower gels and so on.

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3 books I loved

The best part of doing that reading challenge last year is that it made me want to read more. In early February I finished 3 books that I’ve enjoyed. After taking pictures for this post, I finished another one, but I will talk about that one in my next post about books.

 3 books I loved

I enjoyed all of them, maybe because they are so different. I read two of them at a time and I saw that it gives me the possibility to read more, as sometimes I would prefer something light.

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Transport museum Coventry

Last week my husband and I went to visit the Transport museum Coventry. We were walking around the city and we intended to see the art gallery. When we saw the Transport museum we thought we have time for a quick look. It was so big and fascinating that we end up spending much more time than we’ve anticipated and we missed the art gallery all together.

Transport museum Coventry

We’ve started our visit with the special exhibition called Hot Rods & Kool Kustoms. This exhibition can be visited until 14th May. In this exhibition there are beautiful American and British custom made cars. It is a really interesting display and the entrance is free, both to the special exhibition and to the museum.

Transport museum Coventry

1952 Hudson Pacemaker Coupe was my favourite car in this exhibit, I think it’s beautiful.

Transport museum Coventry

These small cars were made for children. I thought these sort of cars are something new and modern, but it looks like they were available many years ago.

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How to make a realistic meal plan

I wanted to make a weekly meal plan for ages, but I get ideas and this makes me want to cook something else and I can’t stick to a plan, until now. For our last week away (well, a little bit more than 1 week), I made a meal plan and this is how I discovered How to make a realistic meal plan.

I started by thinking how much time I will have to cook. Basically not a lot, as we were away with work. I also didn’t have a lot of space to cook, as we were caravanning. I have an oven and a hob with 2 burners, a small fridge, but the worktop space is limited. Considering all these, I chose the best options available. We eat shop-bought soup, so I got enough cans for each day, making sure we have 1 of 5 a day and we also have loads of different options. I’m going to talk about the meal plan I did when we were busy, most days include only the breakfast and dinner, as at lunch time we had different things, vegan healthy bars and sandwiches most days.

How to make a realistic meal plan

Because I wasn’t at home, I prepared the rice, cornmeal and pasta by weighting in how much I would need to cook once. I also made the mix for pancakes/cupcakes, dry ingredients, to which I got to add 2 eggs and some milk. It took only 10 minutes to prepare everything. I prepared a few cans of veggies too and I took some coconut milk from home for the risotto. I didn’t want to have to go shopping often.

Day 1.
B – Sandwich and soup We had sandwich, soup and cake.
L – Vegan coconut milk risotto with veggies I made coconut milk risotto with bamboo shoots.
D – Mash potatoes and halloumi Mash potatoes, pan-fried halloumi and red cabbage salad.
Day 2.
B – Pasta with veggies We had pasta with 1 can of peas and 1 can of tomatoes, herbs and sesame seeds.
D – Stir-fry Stir-fry with leeks, carrots, peppers, mushrooms and halloumi.
Day 3.
B – Baked beans on toast Baked beans on toast with soup.
D – Soup, omelette with salad Soup. Omelette with salad and 1 pancake.
Day 4.
B – Polenta with veggies Polenta with tomatoes and peas, 1 vegan sausage.
D – Soup and stir-fry Soup. Pan-fried potatoes with grated cheddar, 1 egg and red cabbage salad.
Day 5.
B – Risotto Risotto with soft cheese and mushrooms.
D – Soup, avocado on toast Avocado on toast with 1 fried egg and garlic mushrooms.
Day 6.
B – Baked beans on toast Baked beans on toast and 1 vegan sausage.
D – Soup and stir-fry Soup. Stir-fry of peppers, carrots, mushrooms, potatoes and onions.
Day 7.
B – Soup and pancakes Soup. Savoury pancakes with mushrooms and cheese.
D – Nachos Nachos with homemade tomato sauce.

As you can see, I did pretty good. We had at least 3 servings of veggies every day. We also had some fruits, so I don’t think there was a day with less than 4 from the 5-a-day.

So, these are my tips on How to make a realistic meal plan.

Make it flexible.
I think my meal plan was a success because I didn’t think of an exact recipe. I said, for example, “stir-fry” and this meant I could do it with each ever veggies I fancied. As you can see in my plan, we had quite a lot of mushrooms because we both wanted to have more mushrooms that week.

Make it simple.
Another thing that was very important is that I kept everything easy and simple. Not too fancy, so I didn’t have to spend too much time cooking because I didn’t have a lot of it. I made plans before, but it was too complicated for the time and resources I had.
Last time I made a plan, we were away, like this month, but we were staying in a self-catering cottage, I had the pans they provided us with and again, not a lot of worktop to do what I wanted.

Make it convenient.
Use the things you know it will make your life easier and it will also make it more likely you will stick to your meal plan. I used canned soup, canned veggies along fresh veggies and some frozen mushrooms too. At home I have more time and I would cut down on the number of canned foods I would have. So, instead of asking myself to cook from scratch with fresh veggies that I bought that day from the supermarket, I chose convenience for myself. Leaving the caravan at 8.45 and getting back at 6 meant I was able to cook in the mornings and in the evening too. A few years ago I would have left the cottage at 8 and got back at 8 after going to the supermarket to get fresh food. Do I have to point out that we had pizza and pasta almost every evening? I was too tired and had other things to do too.

These are my tips. I will make another meal plan for next week, to see how well I will stick to it while at home.
Do you make meal plans?

Coventry

I had a little break from blogging, not intentional though. I had a cold, still struggling with it, so I wasn’t in the right mood for blogging. Last week I’ve been to Coventry and I have loads of pictures to share. I also visited the Transport Museum, but I will blog about that in a different post these days.
Now that I’m getting back to blogging, I have a few exciting things I want to blog about and a couple of very exciting new projects.

My husband and I went to Spon Street and, as mentioned, to the Coventry Transport Museum. There are plenty more things to see in Coventry, like the art gallery and the cathedral, among other things. We’ll have to visit the city again in the future, to see everything.

01 Coventry

Spon Street is pretty much in the centre. The old half-timbered 14th century buildings were restored and now they are shops, pubs and restaurants. Spon Street first appeared in documents in the 12th century. Spon Gate was one of the 12th that were protecting the city, built in the 14th century and demolished almost 400 years later.

On this street there were traders from the 12th century until the 19th century. There were a lot of trades on this street: fuller, weaver, cordwainer, saddler, plumber, smothi, carpenter, cloth dresser, woader, salter, cobber, fletcher, dyer, tanner, whittawer, watchmaker, apothecary and physician. In the 18th century Coventry was booming due to its ribbon manufacturing. With the industrial revolution, factories appeared and they replaced the ribbon makers. As they didn’t have money, the shopkeepers started to lose money too. It was a bleak period with starvation and soup kitchens for poor families.

The buildings we see today were rebuilt 40-50 years ago with the original materials. Some of the houses have boards on them with details about the initial look of the house and when it was rebuilt.

02 Coventry

03 Coventry

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