Friday, 17 August 2018

Fig, Mozzarella and Prosciutto Pizza


And so it begins, the weekend is finally here and I am celebrating the best way I know how, by slicing myself up with a tasty new treat.

As you know I do not normally cook on a Friday, who does, but with a beauty like this, it would be hard to resist to not cook, especially when it takes no time at all to make. 

So, here is the thing I am trying to be healthy and now that I am working out and it being summer, I want to eat a bit better, whilst you may think pizza is not the way, it can so be with these pizza bases from Magioni

We think pizza, we think a whole lotta of the good stuff in the form of cheese, loaded with meat and little veg, but it so does not have to be that way and why not start from the bottom up. Magioni who have recently launched here in the UK from Holland have a great selection of veggie pizza bases which you can find here and here


Using a veggie pizza base is a great way to get in some extra goodness into our bodies and we can clock up in no time our 5 a day, plus it is a great way to fool the kids who are fussy about eating vegetables, as you really can not tell in the taste.


When thinking about toppings for pizza, especially when making it I like to think about what is in season, so I can get all its freshness and add something a little different and August is the perfect time of year for figs, they are big, woody and juicy, combined with mozzarella, prosciutto a drizzle of honey your tastes buds are literally blown away and it is one of my favourite pizza combinations. 

With a few great ingredients, just 6! You do not feel like your slaving away, meaning more time spent with your feet up and catching up with loved ones, plus it is a great way to get the kids helping out in the kitchen, with adult supervision of course. 


Ingredients
Magioni Courgette Pizza (or any you fancy)

2-3 large figs cut

5 Slices of prosciutto

1 tub of good tomato puree

250 grams of mozzarella torn or sliced

1 teaspoon of honey


Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.

2. Spread on your tomato sauce on top of your pizza base, stopping an inch away from the edge.

3. arrange your torn mozzarella on top, followed by your figs sliced and sliced prosciutto and place in the oven for 10-12 minutes, once out drizzle your honey over, slice up and share 

How do you like your pizza served? Have you tried any of the Magioni pizza bases?

London Mumma

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Thursday, 16 August 2018

Getting Fit With Esquared


Whether you are new to working out or an old pro or looking to join a class and find new techniques to keep your body guessing, I highly recommend turning your attention and signing up with Esqaured.

Now I'll be honest I have not worked out in a long time, I mean what just over 3 years now. Since having Leanora I attended a few buggy and mummy work out classes with the NCT gals, but 9 months later and returning to work, I found it less difficult to work out, whilst some gyms have creche inside, I just can't leave my daughter with any and anyone.

Leanora now 4 years old, starting school in a matter of weeks and my home and work life balance has found it's easy groove, plus being primarily located in the city where there are an abundance of new and old gyms, there are no excuses for me not to go. 

A girlfriend from work was always asking me to go and if truth be told I always found an excuse, heck any even just to not go, but always promising that I would! But simply put I was not yet ready, whilst I knew I needed to work out, I was not feeling great and knew that I could be healthier, had to be healthier not just only for me but my daughter too, plus sitting at an office desk for 8-12 hours eating mac n cheese and running from meeting to meeting is not ideal, nor is the running around proper exercise.


Whilst classes and monthly gym memberships can become extremely costly, classes local to you may not be ideal, thinking would I make it in time, what if my train is delayed, can I do it in my lunch break, with certain subscription packages can I do a variety of classes, all of these comes to mind and thinking about it alone is enough to put anyone off, so I did just that, that was until Esquared got in touch. 


I always ran before I became pregnant, twice a day some days 4-5 days a week, I tried the gym but they were not fun and I felt very self-conscious, then when I fell pregnant, I could not for obvious reasons, run so I turned to pregnancy yoga and Pilates and loved every minute of it, my body too. I continued as I had said for a short period after giving birth, but never took to it again. 

So when Esquared got in touch about this app, that lets you know all about the gym and 100's of classes on offer in your CURRENT location I was thrilled, especially as there are loads close to where I work and home, so if I felt like I wanted to look up, yoga, Pilates, my new fave box fit, ass and abs and pillar killer (don't ask, I thought I was gonna die, but I'm booked back to do it next week) I could just do so, buy easily buying credit and if I wanted a class today, tomorrow or for even in a few days time, I could easily book myself in, and with the filter of the type of class I was looking for I could book myself in with a few easy taps and off I go. 


If you are not looking for class, the Esquared app will find gyms close to your location, so if you are looking for more of an intense work out on your own for a spot of weightlifting, it is all there and easily accessible, plus they have gyms and classes starting off from as little as £5. Another bonus and certainly my fave feature about Esquared is that there is no joining fee, just simply pay as you wanna work out.  


Since starting my fitness journey with Esquared just over a month now, I've totally been bitten by the fitness bug, I go to a class at least twice a week, before or after work and sometimes cheekily in my lunch break, where I've been able to find 30-minute work out classes.

A major thanks to Esquared for getting me back on track and god knows you've changed my life for the better and they can change yours too, make sure to download the app, here if you have Apple or Google Play sign up and maybe I'll see you at the next class.

London Mumma

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Monday, 13 August 2018

3 Things To Do When You Are Having A Bad Day


There are times when we wake up for no apparent reason just in a bad mood or a little sad, totally unexplainable! Whilst tomorrow is a new day and you know you will feel better then, what's important is how you are feeling and coping today, the day that you are in a funk. 

Whilst it sucks being in this oh-my-gosh-the-world-is-coming-to-an-end space space that I would never wish upon anyone, but, if you are, these are some useful tips to ease that pain and lift your mood.

Work Out
Work it out guys! Nothing more invigorating and great for the mind, body and spirit than a little intense work out. Be it in a bad mood because of a relationship, the kids getting on your tits, workload is manic or your going through a sticky situation, instead of bottling up those negative feelings, punch, stretch or HIIT it out at the gym or sign up to a class, not a fan of classes on your own grab some of the girl gang and have fun with it. 

Meditate
To rid that doom and gloom, I like to find a quiet place for 10-15 minutes, 5 minutes if I am strapped for time and at work and really need to clear my head, I head to the bathroom to get my thoughts together, close my eyes and woosa it out when I am in a stressful situation and need a clear mind. Nothing wrong with taking a moment for yourself to get things in order. 

Read
Nothing better than reading to broaden the mind and to get lost in a good book to lift the spirits. Any time I need a distraction from my own negative thoughts and bad mood, I pick up a worthy book to help digest and refresh my mind, be it a self-help, to help get to grips with my emotions or a selection of reads that I buy each month.

How do you  cope with a bad mood? Would love to hear your comments below!


London Mumma

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Wednesday, 8 August 2018

2 Worthy Books To Read This Month


Can anyone tell I love books? No then we're you have you been and catch up on my favourite monthly book reads.

This is month my line up is small, I revisited a book that I was reading when I was first pregnant and did not complete as I missed placed it, thanks to pregnancy brain, but recently snapped back up and  within 24 hours I tucking back into to The Goldfinch thanks to Amazon Prime's super fast delivery along with Mumboss, from the lovely Vicki Psarias who is the blogger behind Honest Mum. 

After posting my July Summer reads over on the Honest Mum group on Facebook last month, Vicki recommended that I read her book and I am so glad that she did. Being a working mother of 1 and a cat, Milo, balancing work life can be a little tricky more so that I am a single parent and now that my daughter is about to start school this September life is going to get a little bit busier, but after reading the Mumboss I felt more empowered than I have in a long time, proving that hard work, focus and a lot of planning you can do it, single parent or not! Just because you've had a kid or two, does not mean you have to just succumb to that, you are someone before and after and with a lot of hard work you can turn your dreams know matter how big or small in to a reality, Mumboss is packed with loads of great advice, for those looking to get or already in the digital world and a book that I certainly recommend reading.

The Goldfinch, where do I start with this mammoth book, a tale of love, loss, crime you name it, this book has it all. It starts with Theo as a man in Amsterdam and few pages in, throws you to a young Theo going to a museum with his mother before her tragic death, he leaves the wreckage with a painting a talisman if you like, and I have to say the painting does really exist in real life. A story about a young boy growing up and trying to find his identity as a man with loss. This book deservedly won many prizes including the Pulitzer and it will be a winner on your must read this month. 

What are you reading this month? Let us know in the comments below!

London Mumma

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Monday, 6 August 2018

5 Steps For A Perfect Week


Happy Monday! I just had the best weekend ever with Leanora, we went to Thorpe Park with my mother, it was a great way to relive my youth with my daughter and have some outdoor adventure fun. The sun was shining, we stuffed our face with nachos, slushies, whilst racing on the water slides.

Back to reality and back to work for us all, Monday's may be our most busiest of days, racing out the home to start the day, getting back into a routine can be tough, as we're coming down from the weekend fun.

Mondays can certainly be frustrating, we start off by hitting the snooze button on repeat not wanting to get out of bed and face the world or more importantly the commute to work as we know, Monday's is far more hectic than other days, but Monday's certainly do not have to be the hardest or busiest days with a little perfect planning.

Make it fun
Monday's should be your most productive day, get your self-organised for the week and organise something fun, be it a work out session, something that I am doing each Monday with Class Pass. Not up to a work out this week, then why not binge watch my new fave show on Netflix that I just discovered Girl Boss or Good Girls after work

Tuesday Dress To Impress
Make your Tuesday an impressive one! Most morning's we roll out of bed, struggle on what to wear and end up not feeling comfortable on what we found in the dark, so why not treat your self to a new linen blazer, perfect for this heat wave, wear with a dress, or pair with some shorts for a casual Friday.

Wind Down Wednesday
Take it easy and spoil your self, be it with a stroll into work, a mid-week beauty pamper sesh, to even ordering your Friday nights take out on a Wednesday, your halfway through your week, you deserve a treat.

Thursday Thoughts
Take time to think and plan your weekend and practice a little self-love, what better way to kick off your self-love day, than by buying a book that inspires, drives and uplifts you, such as The Secret.

Funday Friday
They do not call it funday Friday for nothing, so enjoy it! You deserve a break after a long working week. At times whilst it is hard to leave the office, you have to switch off, if like me with kids, get the rents to help out and have them for the night and head out for after work drinks with colleagues for a catch-up and a gossip. 

How do you plan your perfect week?

London Mumma

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Thursday, 2 August 2018

City Shorts


As a city worker, there is nothing I love more than a new fashion find that I am able to wear to work and casually out of work, more bang for my buck springs to mind! Plus with the temperatures rising, the appeal of a fitted dress, or trouser suit is not that enticing and thinking about it alone makes me wanna pass out.


Creeping into my wardrobe is the tailored, floaty shorts, they scream, business but playful and fun too, whilst not normally worn to the office and reserved more for the beach, this summer they are an alternative to the trouser and I must say they are so perfect for the office and after work drinks, plus they keep you cool from day to night.



It's all about comfort and the lose fitted option is the way to keep you cool, plus I have to blame Sainsbury's as this was where I  spotted these beauties, that has fuelled my obsession with tailored shorts this summer. Reiss has a great selection and they do tailoring ever so well, I've found the coolest ones here which are currently on my wish list.


With so many different styles to choose from, if opting for the longer length I certainly recommend wearing it with a crisp blazer and a basic white tee. For short tailored shorts, all you need is a good shirt, some great flats and a trusty bag. I am keeping it neutral, and beige, my style is always changing and evolving, but at the moment, I am drawn to white, neutral and beige tones, opting for a more classic and chic look and I am finding that I am able to mix and match more key pieces in my wardrobe. If you are looking for texture, why not wear some white shorts with a leopard print top or my new fave print is the zebra print, some gold statement jewellery to give it a more luxe feel. Just remember to keep the shorts loose fitted, I'm going for a size up for a more relaxed look.


Shop My Look


London Mumma

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Wednesday, 1 August 2018

How To Save Up For A Mortgage



Getting on to the property market can be hard, but teaming up with someone be it a partner, friend sibling, even getting your parents to help you to give you a leg up into the property world can help do the trick, plus having savings too, but at times that can even be hard to do with living costs hiking up year on year.


Whilst some feel it can be an impossible dream, especially when you are forking out an arm and a leg, throw in some blood sweat and tears to even out the scale, the older and younger generation can find themselves thinking, that yes, it is an impossible dream and that is all it will be and we will forever be paying off someone else's mortgage other than our own and facing ridiculously high rent increases year on year.





Location, location, location
You have to really think, sit down and weigh up your options whilst renting may be easier, is it really affordable in the long run, do you stay in a city where you know property prices surge or step outside of your city life and live somewhere more rural, where it will be cheaper to live and saving you some extra cash, that is where I am currently at, but then I weigh up travelling costs and thinking is it worth it to travel so far daily with a kid in tow, who is just about to start school! Whilst everyone's position is different, moving out of the most expensive areas in for a short period is never a bad idea.

Parents

If you don’t want to move back into your family home, maybe your parents can help you get on the market in other ways. Take a look at SunLife who have some great advice for parents wanting to help out their kids




Part buy
So many people have taken to this route where a vast deposit is not needed, whilst you may not own the property outright it is a starting point and a way to get your foot in the door, enabling you to save and chip away at the remaining percentage until you own it outright or have the vast majority.

Chill nights in
Saving not splurging can help you save, instead of opting for nights out, cut back on the weekly night out and opt for a night in with some popcorn a good movie and ditch the takeaway and whip up some homemade Chinese sweet sticky chicken wings to help save you a little extra dough towards that dream home of yours.

Make your dream a reality
Simple really, in order to vision what you want, go and see what you want, nothing wrong in booking a few viewings, look at the location, look at the homes available to get an idea of what you want and how much it is going to cost you, to get a real sense of your price range you really need to know what is on the market. In recent years first-time buyers have typically used a 20% deposit to buy a house, so factor that in when you are going on your viewings.


Have you been saving for a deposit? How did you do it, where did you start? I would love to hear your comments below....


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London Mumma
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Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Dairy Free Avocado Chocolate Mousse



You guys, this is the easiest, lightest, tastiest chocolate pud, that's not just dairy free, perfect for vegans and takes minutes to make, but it is pure perfection in a bowl.

Since we started cutting out dairy from our diet, I have to say, whilst I'm not a big chocolate fan, I do from time to time like a good chocolate pud, weird I know, so when I eat this I get my instant chocolate fix, plus it leaves me super happy knowing that it is a lot more healthier too. I know some people may be thanking Avocado! Avocado in a desert, you must be crazy, trust me I'm not, you can not even taste it I promise!





I was a little freaked out by using avocado, I think, well it's a veg, not something that should be in a desert,  I mean I'm still coming to terms with pineapple being on a pizza, it's just wrong, but I'll face my fears one day and give it a go.



Most weekends, particularly after our family Sunday dinner, we like to put our feet up and lazily eat our desserts, with the temperature scorching, no more apple crumble and custard, instead we want something nice and light and hits that sweet spot. This dairy-free avocado chocolate mousse certainly tickles those taste buds and leaves you feeling content, knowing that it's dairy free and not too sugary, all you need is some essential items which you can easily find in your home, a great blender and you are all set.



The blender I can not live without is the Blendtec since it came into my life it has made blending all that much easier. I literally chuck in all my ingredients, hit a few buttons and my healthy chocolate pud is ready in minutes. I love that this one-pot wonder is just that, there is minimal mess, so I'm not stuck in the kitchen washing up mountains of stuff.

Ingredients
2 ripe avocados
1/2 cup of cocoa powder
160ml of coconut cream
2 tsp of vanilla extract
2 tbsp of maple syrup

Directions
1. Pop all the ingredients in your blender and blend until smooth, scraping down the sides every now and then.
2. Pour out evenly into your ramekins/serving pots, (saving just a little extra for you for later) add your desired toppings, serve immediately and enjoy!

Truly these puddings are simply divine, you must make them this weekend, give it a go and let me know what you think.

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London Mumma
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Monday, 23 July 2018

My Road Trip Family Essentials


Photo From Harper's Baazar

With the finishing line in sight to the summer holidays, and bodies already projected to the open road and sandy beaches with crystal clear blue seas there are a few things you need to put in check and inspect, especially your car before a road trip prior to you setting out for some fun in the sun.

This week set to be the busiest on the roads and as we pack up the car with luggage, kids, pets and everything minus the kitchen sink you are going to need to make sure you check and replace those tyres regularly, unless you’re planning to have the kids pick up the car and strap it to their backs. Always check the tyres for wear and uneven tread and making sure the alignment is right, plus  make sure you have a spare tyre just in case, failure to do so would be negligent and could result in accidents.

A major no brainer really is to have your brake pads tested too, god forbid you find yourself in a situation where you had to use them abruptly to avoid a collision, get these checked regularly, especially before a road trip to protect you and your family and others around you, if not, it could lead to a fatal accident.

The car is going to be packed, kids are on their tablets playing games, watching movies, you've got the radio on, and it’s going to be a long hot drive in this heat. I certainly recommend stopping off and service your car air conditioning from Ossett Tyre House to get you air conditioning checked out to keep you and the family cool, as improper air conditioning could lead to serious car heat ups.

Refreshments, are always a good idea to and have some treats packed and plenty of water too, you can always make ahead my strawberry sparkling soda and bottle up for the ride to keep you and the kids extra cool.

Family, car and road safety is extremely important, failure to have the above checked, replaced and looked into could lead to serious consequences, such as car breakdowns leaving your family stranded before your holiday has even begun, to more serious results.

Are you hitting the road for your holidays? How will you be preparing? I would love to read your comments below....

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Friday, 6 July 2018

White Chocolate Funfetti Popcorn



I can't lie I adore, no I love popcorn! Leanora too and when we were asked to make and bring in a treat for sports day we knew we just had to make white chocolate funfetti popcorn.

We are believers that popcorn solves everything, all you require is the finest ingredients to help bring it to life. 

Whilst Friday and Saturday night is movie night, we always watch either Moana or Madagascar with a bowl filled with our favourite weekend treat, heck have it any day if the week if you fancy it, it never lasts and we find ourselves making a few batches of this moorish treat.


Leanora believes more sprinkles the better and I think she is right, funfetti is a real treat it's almost magical and bring so much fun to a snack.

Honestly, I never knew how quick it was to make popcorn, even quicker thanks to Exclusively Housewares recent event where I was gifted the SmArt popcorn machine. Gone are the days of microwave popcorn bags or waiting for it to pop in a hot pan, like a bunch of eager beavers.

Two large bars of white chocolate, one for me, the other for the popcorn, funfetti sprinkles, some trusty corn kernels and let the magic begin to make these fluffy white chocolate funfetti popcorn.

Honestly, this popcorn lasts no time in my house or at sports day, the kids will love you for it and the grown ups too, this is the perfect thing to bring to any occasion be it BBQ, pool party or family and friend get together.


Ingredients 
10 cups of corn kernels
200g of white chocolate
4 tablespoons of sprinkles

Directions
1. If you do not have a popcorn maker, grab a microwaveable bag and zap as per its instructions. Once the popcorn is ready, pick out any kernels that have not manage to pop and place to one side.

2. Brake up your white chocolate and place into a microwaveable bowl and every 30 seconds, stop give it a stir until completely melted, then pour over you popcorn add your sprinkles and toss with a clean spoon, making sure that each popcorn is evenly covered.

3. Pour out your coated popcorn on to parchment paper and leave to dry for 20 minutes and enjoy!

Have a popping good day! x

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