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Hi! I’m back……well for a bit anyway. I have really enjoyed my time away and want to continue with living my life and not worrying about having to take a picture of everything I do! I have been keeping up with your blogs when I can and think I’m up to date with most of your goings on. For the moment I think I’ll be blogging when I have the spare time like now as Tim is watching football and I am watching TV in our bedroom. I am so busy with work at the moment that I have been working 9 – 10 hr days and waking up at 5.30am in the morning thinking about it! I am very stressed this weekend as I not sent back some large sections of the programme to the client and they need to see them asap……not looking forward to Monday at all. But for the moment I thought I would update you with some photos that I have taken recently to keep you informed about what I’ve been doing for the last two weeks or so………..

Me sprinting towards the finish at the Race for Life – 29.31 mins oh yes!!!

The cakes I made for work’s second attempt at a 20th birthday party – Summer Upside Downer from Baking from My Home to Yours and a Pound Cake from the same book, sandwiched with jam and covered with icing. For the one I made last time see here and here. I also made some biscuits covered with whipped cream and a strawberry half – these went down a treat – and a swiss roll filled with whipped cream and raspberry compote.

The director of our company making a speech at the party.

My view of the England vs Slovenia match at the party – the bush was huge!

Free ice cream at half time from a real ice cream van – I had plain ice cream with chocolate sauce and a flake – NOM!

A new piece of furniture for all my baking stuff. It is a trolley with wheels at one end so I can drag it into the kitchen for more work space. I’m so pleased that all my things are out of the box, maybe I’ll use them a lot more now!

We watched the England vs Germany match in the pub and were so disappointed that we lost. I saw this poster on one of my friends Facebook profile and thought it was brilliant! (Not sure if you will understand this if you aren’t from the UK!)

It was my sister;s graduation from Reading Uni on Wednesday so I had a half day at work then met up with my family to see her graduate. It was a good day and I was so happy to see them all, even if it was for a day.

I hope you’ve liked a pictoral post today and thanks for sticking around to see if I would make a return!!

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I will be taking a short break from blogging for a while not sure how long I’ll be away for. Recently I haven’t been feeling motivated to take loads of pictures or blog about my day. The majority of my days are quite boring too and this has made me think that I need to live a fuller life. After speaking to Tim I have decided to live more and at the moment blogging doesn’t really fit into that.

I will be checking out your blogs when I can and commenting, there just won’t be much going on here!

Helen

Just a quick whizz through my food today as I have a cool survey so you can find out more about me. For my breakfast today I had a massive bowl of Shreddies. I just seemed to keep pouring and pouring until the bowl was full! Maybe I need to cut back a little on my cereal intake as I nearly couldn’t finish it!! No picture as I’m sure you all know what a bowl of Shreddies look like!

For lunch I had something a bit different to what I usually have – Ryvita wafers with cheese slices and tomato. After my carb fest yesterday I wanted something really light for lunch. I had four wafers with half a slice of Danish cheese on each and two slices of chopped tomatoes.

It was a really nice lunch, even though the cheese had sweated a bit! It was nice and light and I had room for the rest of my lunch – a banana and a pot of mixed nuts and raisins. I feel like I’m being really repetitive with my lunch, but the banana / nut combo really works for me. Apologies if you are tired of the same thing!

For dinner I made Butternut Squash Risotto. Last time I made this I didn’t roast the butternut squash pieces for long enough and Tim complained that they were too hard. So today I made sure they were perfectly roasted! I was really pleased with it today as the rice was nice and creamy. It was really filling though, maybe the rice still expands in my tummy!

So onto the survey – I found this on Hillary’s blog and thought that I would steal it for myself – thanks Hillary! I love doing surveys as   I think they are a great way for others to find out little snippets about me. This will be my second survey on here, the first can be found here.

Favorite cookie?

White Chocolate and Macadamia from Ben’s Cookies – they serve them just warm….delicious!

Favorite way to eat oatmeal?

With raisins and almonds mixed in and a sprinkling of cinnamon.

Favorite snack?

I have a new found love for 9 Bars! I need to stock up on some more.

Favorite sandwich combo?

Tuna, sweetcorn and mayonaise with cucumber slices and lettuce.

Are you a vegetarian?

No way, I love my meat way too much! I do try to eat vegetarian once in a while as I do think that too much meat is bad for me, especially red meat, but I could never not eat meat again….think of all the roast dinner I would miss out on!

Favorite vegetarian product?

I don’t really eat vegetarian products like tofu or tempeh…….maybe couscous if that counts!

Favorite yogurt?

I love Tesco’s Fromage Frais, so creamy, but I also like the luxury yogurts, especially the strawberries and cream flavour.

Favorite fruit?

Tough one….bananas, apples and strawberries are all on an equal footing here!

Favorite dried fruit?

Not a big fan of dried fruit so I would say dried cranberries / craisins. They are great added to baked goods!

Favorite veggie?

Another tough one, I love nearly all veggies (except for carrots…eww!) but I especially love courgettes, mushrooms and butternut squash.

Favorite comfort food meal?

Anything with pasta! It is quick and easy and I can add my favourite comfort ingredient to it, cheese!

Favorite restaurant?

We don’t really eat out a lot but I do love going to Bella Italia as they have a great range of pasta and pizza dishes and some fab desserts.

Favorite beverage?

You can’t beat a nice cool glass or orange squash in the morning – I’m such a child!

Favorite way to take your coffee at home?

With milk and preferably a slice of cake on the side!

Favorite cracker?

Not majorly into crackers…..do Ryvita’s count?

Favorite dessert?

The toughest question of them all! I love: cheesecakes, crumbles, ice cream, anything chocolately or lemony….the list goes on!

Favorite condiment?

Definitely sour cream, I love piling it onto my plate when we have chilli!

Favorite way to eat tortilla chips?

With tomato sauce, jalapeno peppers and a lot of cheese melted over the top a.k.a. Nachos!

Favorite fast food restaurant?

I really don’t t eat fast food but I suppose Subway probably counts towards this. I only have this about once a year, if not less!

Do you watch the food network?

Nope, I can’t get it on my TV…probably a good thing otherwise I would be glued to it all day!

Favorite food network show?

See above!

Favorite salad combo?

I love a good Caesar salad, not the best for you, but grilled chicken and bacon with salad are a match made in heaven.

Favorite bagel?

Smoked salmon and cream cheese – so posh!

Do you like cream cheese or peanut butter on your bagel?

Definitely cream cheese.

Favorite bar?

I don’t go out to bars really as they aren’t my cup of tea but I do like relaxing in pubs with a cold drink and good company.

Favorite peanut butter?

Anything crunchy.

Favorite almond butter?

Have never had it (shock, horror!)

Favorite cereal?

Another toughie….I love oats, hot and cold, but also love granola, Shreddies, Weetabix, Shredded Wheat….our cereal space is packed!

What milk product do you use on your cereal?

Semi-skimmed milk

Favorite nut?

Brazil nuts, especially covered in chocolate!

Favorite candy?

Not a big lover of candy, much more prefer chocolate in any shape or form!

Favorite ethnic food?

Indian, I love a good curry.

Favorite tea?

I hate tea!!

Favorite indulgence?

Chocolate for sure! I usually pick a Galaxy bar as it is so creamy.

Do you like margaritas?

I’ve never had one!

Do you like pickles?

Nope, disgusting!

Are you into spicy food?

Yes, definitely. I don’t like really really spicy things but a bit of a kick is fine with me.

Favorite way to eat a banana?

Au naturel – normally!

Favorite way to eat an apple?

In a crumble or pie!

Favorite apple variety?

Golden Delicious

Are you good at eating with chopsticks?

No, horrendous!

Favorite fruit juice?

Orange (no bits!) or mango and passionfruit Innocent smoothie.

Favorite alcoholic beverage?

Gin and bitter lemon / Gin and tonic.

Favorite tropical fruit?

Pineapple.

Hands down favorite food ever?

How can I choose, I love so many things! I’m such a foodaholic!

I hope you have enjoyed finding out more about me. Do fill the survey in for yourself, it would be great to find out about your food loves too.

Evening! I’m not posting tonight as I honestly haven’t done very much today! We got up quite late, I must have needed a long sleep after yesterday’s excursions. Today we have gone to the gym and gone food shopping – yay to well-stocked cupboards and a full fridge! We have also watched a lot of football and there’s still one more match to go today! I think we might miss it though and watch a film which will be nice.

So today I have a guest post on Jess’ blog whilst she is away – it goes up at 6pm US time so please check it out. It gives more of an insight into how I try to live my healthy lifestyle.

Hope you’ve all had a great weekend. x

Just to let you know that I’ve changed the domain name for the blog – it’s now www.cookbakeandlive.com.

If you have my blog saved to your google reader / yahoo reader / favourites, first of all thanks (!) and secondly, please update to the new name.

Thanks! Helen x

I saw this going around the blog world about 2 weeks behind and actually filled this out last week! I have been so busy with all the cooking / baking I did last weekend and the manic week this week that I haven’t had a chance to post it until now. I hope you enjoy finding out a bit more about me….

Me!

Where would you be able to spend hours and be happy?

I think in Spain, where my bf’s family have a villa. I can relax on the beach, have a great meal afterwards, then enjoy the evening sitting outside with a cool cocktail!

What’s your favorite kind of doughnut?

The good old jam doughnuts!

Do you have any tattoos or piercings?

Nope, none.

What is your favorite movie?

Definitely Gone with the Wind. I know it’s a book but I absolutely love everything about this film – the dialogue, cinematography, Scarlett O’Hara’s character, the moral message and my two favourite lines from any film “Ashley, oh Ashley” and “Frankly my dear I don’t give a damn!

Who was the last person you spoke to on the phone?

My mum. I asked her to send me over my warranty papers for my MacBook as it wasn’t working – eeek! Luckily I managed to get it working now. I was on the phone to her for about 20 mins, we always have so much to talk about!

Are you still friends with the people you knew in middle school or high school?

I am still best friends with my best friend from school. She has just persuaded me to run the London marathon!

What is the last thing you ate?

Breakfast – homemade muesli, yummy!

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a music teacher like my mum.

Name three things that are close to you right now:

Coffee mug, Blackberry and a lot of work!

What was your best subject in school?

Funnily enough I got the best mark in my Geography A Level, even though I was going to uni to study music!

What is your favorite restaurant?

We don’t really eat out that much but I do love going to Bella Italia or Zizzi’s when we do. I love Italian food.

Any hidden talents?

A lot of my work colleagues think the fact I can sing is a hidden talent! I don’t think so!

What is your middle name?

Margaret. I used to hate it until I realized I was names after my Great Aunt who was a nun – how cool is that!

What is your favorite website?

Either Asos.com or Digitalspy.co.uk

How old were you when you had your first kiss?

14.

Chocolate or vanilla?

It really depends what mood I’m in!

What is your favorite girl’s name?

I really like, Evie and Emmy.

Favorite store?

New Look or H&M

Would you rather be a rock star or a famous athlete?

Famous Athlete

Favorite food?

Chilli Con Carne or Chicken Fajitas…..a touch choice!

What are you wearing right now?

Along stripy jumper top from H & M, grey leggings and grey boots

What is your favorite animal?

Dog – I really want one!

Did you graduate from college?

Well from uni – I got First Class honours in Music (BMus) from Royal Holloway.

What does your last text message say?

‘Great, have a good day’ – sent from my friend. I was telling her that the confirmation email for the London Marathon had come through at last.

Do you have any nicknames?

Hels

So I’m home alone right now as my boyfriend is watching football at his parents. I was going to go but as there is no food involved (!) I decided to be proactive at home instead. The thing that’s bothering me is that I really really want to do some baking but haven’t got the motivation to for many reasons:

  1. I don’t know what to bake! This is so stupid as I have SO MANY recipes I must have one that I have the ingredients for.
  2. I don’t really want any bad stuff lying around the house as I know I’l gorge on it. My bf is trying to steer clear of bad snacks so won’t eat them either – he’s no help!
  3. I don’t have the money to spend on buying ingredients / replenishing my cupboards.
  4. I need to write down all my recipes before I start baking my way through them.

I just feel as if I have a passion that no-one else my age does. All my friends are out drinking and socializing and I like nothing more than to write down recipes I want to make. Does this make me odd??? It is a perfect opportunity to bake but my food insecurities are really holding me back. At times like these it makes me question why I’m so obsessed with writing down recipes………better get back to it I suppose! Maybe I will make something…….we’ll see!

Hi and welcome to my blog! After starting several blogs (and then shutting them down…) I’ve finally decided that I DO want a little blog to myself to tell you all about my kitchen adventures. I won’t post obsessively as there really isn’t enough hours in the day, but every now and again a tasty recipe will pop up here! I will be posting the things I love to cook and bake on here and hope that you will find inspiration and make them too! I am also trying to make my way through my shelf of cookbooks and other recipes that I’ve collected and hope that my blog will keep you (and me!) up to date with my progress. Please leave me a comment if you would like to ask me anything. Helen xx

Hi! I'm Helen, 23 and from the UK. I love food, keeping fit, going out with friends, wine, gin, having fun, laughing and living life to the max! Motto for this year is to say YES to everything and see what happens!

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