Crunchy Homemade Garlic and Herb Croutons

The courgettes started producing this week and we are inundated already 😂 Cream of courgette soup with homemade bread croutons cooked with garlic and rosemary, so yummy! Had a stinking head cold/ mastitis for a couple of days so I’m trying to cook all the goodness to get me better! L x

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Less Waste Grocery Shopping

Grocery shopping since we started to lower our waste… Our girls go to forest school on the Thursday, so we stop off at the greengrocers on the way home for our shop (I kinda love it as early years #homeeducation for the little kids too, Marley loves helping and counting out what we get ❤). I meal plan, then buy enough fruit and veg for the whole week (to supplement what we’ve grown at home).⁣

There is a bakery next door where we can also get #plasticfree (gorgeous 😍) bread. I buy enough for the week and freeze in the paper bags what I won’t use in the first few days, taking it out the morning of the day we will need it 👍🏻. We get bulk wholefoods delivered every couple of months, and nip into Tesco or Aldi while the girls do gymnastics once a week if there is anything else we need, trying to get tins, jars or cardboard packaging where we can.⁣

I try and minimise visiting shops, especially big supermarkets as much as possible as I don’t particularly find it an enjoyable experience – its such a time (and money!) sap if I don’t meal plan and end up popping in every few days for bits we need! I’d love to hear more about how you shop for your family, if you are making any changes or wanting to? Its all so dependent on our time / circumstances and what’s accessible locally, but hopefully increased pressure will mean more supermarkets focussing on sustainability in the near future! L x

Less Waste

Less Waste Family Car Kit

When we began reducing our waste (and I was riding the wave of late pregnancy organisation mode 😂) we made a little #lowwaste car kit to make it easier to stay #plasticfree on the go (we certainly don’t always manage this but it helps us do better, most of the time, which is good enough for me❤). We have a takeaway coffee cup for me, a metal bowl and spork each, lots of produce and shopping bags, jars for bulk foods, an old takeaway tub for baked goods / leftovers etc. and I also keep a couple of spare reusable nappies, wet bag, cloth wipes and an old filled water bottle to wet them. It saves me remembering everything on the morning of going somewhere, which is helpful for a mama with extreme baby brain / very demanding small people 😂
And in case your interested in the thrilling contents of my car boot 😂 I also keep a picnic blanket, baby sling and blanket, a thin towel for each of the kids, a onesie for each kid, my granny trolley and a camping chair so I can sit and feed comfortably out anywhere. I kinda love seeing whats in people’s cars / fridges / bags, is that weird?! 😂😂 L x

Less Waste

Plastic Free July

Keys, purse, water bottle, everywhere. Anyone else on board with #plasticfreejuly – trying to refuse single use plastic where we can? Maybe just taking shopping bags or a reusable water bottle more is a first step for you this month, or maybe you are taking big steps to changing the way you shop or making more yourself to avoid plastic covered everything in the big supermarkets. I’d love to hear what’s going down in your home?! And I’ll for sure be here sharing what we are learning too ❤

Also if you are after a brill long lasting steel reusable water bottle and ain’t on a kleen kanteen budget (like this mama ✋✋) this was £6.60 delivered from eBay (5.50 for the kids sizes), had mine about a year and recently replaced the kids plastic ones too as they’ve broken / got chewed / manky in the lids over time (I keep them as a spare water bottle for wetting wipes in the car now!). They are great (oil the bamboo lid every now and again to take care of them and don’t leave in water / dishwash) and I’m hopeful they’ll last for yeeeeears.
L x

Less Waste

Creamy Curry Noodles

Creamy curry noodles – I saw a pic on @veganmumkaty feed and had to recreate them! Stir fried some peppers, greens, spring onion and garlic, added a tablespoon of curry paste and some cashew cream (big handful of cashews, 2 cups water, a garlic clove, splash of apple cider vinegar and 3/4 tsp salt blended – canned coconut milk would work too) then stirred into rice noodles. So quick and so yummy!

Instagram always saves my butt when I’m feeling low on cooking inspiration. What are your favourite foodie accounts? L x

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The Nissan Leaf for a Family of 6! Chatting Electric Cars…

Electric car chat! Everytime I post a story with us in the car I get a tonne of questions about what car / seat we have that fits 4 kids in one row the back.. ⁣

So, we have a little @nissan Leaf electric car that we absolutely love. Its lovely to drive, unreal cheap to run (no petrol or tax) and we have had no repairs to date in almost 6 years of owning it. We mainly just charge at home, on @ecotricity 100% renewable energy, and energy from our own solar panels. ⁣

We have a very early (one of the first on the road) that we bought secondhand a few years old, it gets about 60-70 miles to a charge now (slightly less in freezing weather or peak district crazy hills) which is actually plenty for 99% of the driving we do.⁣

Its certainly not an option right now for lots of people, with having restricted range (other than a 2nd car for a short commute / peeps who work from home like us etc) but newer EVs are doing over 300 miles to a charge, with the @Teslamotors model 3 changing the game with the technology and being the about the same price as a standard new petrol car (so in a few years being an accessible price for more people). ⁣

It works so well for our family that we sold our big diesel second car last year as it was only being used a few times a year and we worked out it was cheaper to get a train or rent for holidays or visiting family (i’m hoping we can find a local person with a 6 seater car we can pay to rent off through a peer to peer site rather than pay a big company) ⁣

It also has helped us to be more mindful of how far we travel and to focus on living more locally, which has been unexpectedly kinda great!

In order to keep it when we had our third child we got a @multimac_seat secondhand on eBay. They are pricey but the cost savings on not having to changing our car for 3 and now 4 kids was well worth it for us. It’ll fit until our eldest is 12 when we need to re-evaluate.

Anyone also got or considering an electric as their next car? My hubby @garythopkins is a massive enthusiast and will try and answer any questions / bust some myths for anyone interested! L x

Less Waste

Salad Dressings Made Easy

2 parts oil to 1 part vinegar (or lemon juice) – all you need to remember for a banging salad dressing base! Shake it up in an old jar chucking in whatever seasongs and add ins you fancy (maple syrup & a touch of mustard / Italian herbs / a tablespoon of peanut butter and a splash of soy & chilli sauce are all super yummy ones we make often). Also guys can you tell me, are these kinda posts useful? I’m not naturally an exact measurements kinda gal with recipes, I like to experiment and love knowing a kinda base recipe to work from and adapt, but it drives Gaz mad not knowing exact quantities so I want to know if its more helpful to be more exact here? 😂 Tell me what works for you! L xx

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Less Waste Life: Cloth Nappying On The Go

Less waste with a little one…cloth nappies, wipes, muslin for dribbles, a wet bag for dirties, water bottle and a couple of spare sleepsuits (secondhand as ever, baby clothes are in such abundance secondhand as they are barely worn!). ⁣

I think we have cracked a good system with cloth nappying now, I carry washable wipes dry (we use a mix of @cheekywipes and ikeas plain super cheap cotton facecloths) and just wet them with my water bottle or a sink as needed as I found taking them out wet if they werent used that day they’d go a bit smelly. The wetbag with dirties then just gets chucked in the washer at home 👍🏻⁣

We have Rory in full time nappies and Marley in a nappy overnight, and we do about 1 nappy load every other day, so it is extra washing but in the grand scheme of things a pretty small inconvenience, and I think worth it to send no nappies to landfill and to never run out and have to haul ass out for some 😂. The money advice service also estimates around a £1500 saving over 2.5 years even with laundry costs included 😮 (and not including getting nappies passed on, or selling them after) so its pretty substantial on your wallet too. ⁣

If you are considering cloth nappying your local council may also offer an incentive scheme (ours offers £25 back on a £50 spend) ⁣and @mamalinauk is a brilliant resource for all things cloth nappying (see the highlight on her page for links!)👍🏻 L x

Less Waste

Super Speedy Vegan Minestrone-Ish Soup

Super speedy #vegan minestrone ish soup for one hangry mama tonight, and a quick recipe that’s brilliant for the random veg left knocking about at the bottom of the fridge 😂 Does anyone else get ridiculously stroppy when they don’t eat enough? I’ve had a super busy day and realised I’ve barely eaten a thing plus been carrying and feeding Rory in the carrier pretty much the entire day so was totally knackered and starving. Needed something to fill me up and quick!

To make it I finely chop a load of veggies (I used onion, carrot, broccoli and spinach – beans are a nice addition too), fry for 5 mins then add some broken up spaghetti, a tin of tomatoes, enough boiling water to cover plus about 2 inches and a couple of tablespoons of veg stock powder. Cook for about 12 mins until the spaghetti is cooked and serve.
What are your favourite quick meals? L x #veganrecipe #veganblogger #foodblogger #familyfood #veganuk

Recipes

Sweet Sourdough Toasties

When I was a kid my favourite game was writing menus and playing having my own restaurant. My family all laugh at me because I have always loved reading menus when passing / in places and will always do so whether we are going in / staying to eat or not 😂 I love it now for inspiration of what we make at home.
I saw these amazing sourdough toasties last time I went to @pommune and although I chose something different (their food is unreal, as beautiful as it is delicious, its like edible art!) I knew I’d have to have a go at home.
These are filled with chocolate and raspberry and sprinkled with icing sugar, I didn’t have chocolate in so used my got to substitute (almond butter mixed with a bit of water, maple syrup, and cacao powder to make a thick spread). I just butter the outside of the bread and cook on both sides in a frying pan over a medium heart (you can weigh it down with a another pan but I just give it an occasional squash with a spatula, no toastie machine required 👍🏻 Have you ever tried a sweet toastie? They are amazing!! L x

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