I feel I have so much to say about the #groovingmums blog hop. I may well break this down into several posts over the course of this week.

The #groovingmums blog hop is about encouraging mums to rediscover themselves, to reinvent themselves, to seek out some time just for them and their interests and perhaps to just live a little more vibrantly. Each mum decides how they want to tackle this journey. From weight loss to volunteering, from new courses to seeking employment, from having a new hair cut to having a special day out or anything else for that matter. How can we sum all this up in a badge that you can display on your blog should you wish to do so.

Katie, one of our #groovingmums helped me with this so huge thanks are due to her.

In the Celtic calendar Halloween is the New Year festival of Samhain. It marks the time of death and rebirth, of letting go of that which no longer serves us and celebrating our new intentions. That sounds quite groovingmumsy to me!

I opened a fortune cookie yesterday and it said the sunflower was relevant to me. Could this be because us #groovingmums are turning our faces to the light?

Last week, as well as our regulars we had some newbies and we love you already for your honest posts and willingness to change and add a little spark to your lives one step at a time. Have you noticed how we all seem to be in this together supporting each other on the good, the more challenging and the bloody awful weeks?

I had asked #groovingmums to consider how 5 weeks of the blog hop had helped them and was really touched to see that people really can see a benefit to their lives and in very individual ways.

I also wondered how we could deal with the frankly shitty weeks where we are hit by negative self-talk, external setbacks and so on. We all seem to have had these in the last month or so at different times and in different ways. I liked the suggestion that we should care for the carer (ie ourselves as mums). Part of that is not beating yourself up if you think you are not up to taking part at all, yet, every week or whatever. The whole point of establishing this blog hop was to help people not to hit people with a big stick.

Now here are possible challenges you may or may not feel like giving a go this week.

1. Photographs – Put a photograph up on your blog post about #groovingmums If you don’t normally do this, do it in a way that is comfortable to you. Even if it is from the back if you really don’t want to show your face to the world yet. For those who do put photographs of themselves on their blog, do it differently. Put on fancy dress, flash your pants like Glasgow_Mummy, whatever does it for you without making you feel overly embarrassed. Break out of the comfort zone one step at a time. I will be joining in on this one too tomorrow but for now, if you want to see me in all my triple-chinned glory, check out the Britmums Live website. It took me weeks to pluck up the courage to do this so I do know the photo thing can be very daunting indeed.

2. Write the blog post you have in your mind but are scared to publish. Every time I have done that on some quite controversial topics, I have had supportive comments so put it out there and see what people think. You can always set up comment moderation so you are in charge of which comments go live.

Ready, steady go. Your mission is to write a blog post about how you are doing one or all of the following ..

1. Rediscovering yourself

2. Reinventing yourself

3. Making time for yourself

4. Getting your Groove Back

5. Developping your va-va-voom

Then send the link for your blog post to me on mums-the-word@live.com and I will promote it here and on Twitter and other social networks.

Visit back here tomorrow to see my post as I am on the journey too and some of my achievements are really tiny but still vital for me in moving forwards. I need your support just as the other #groovingmums do so please do try to leave a comment here and on the other posts. If you are not on Twitter, do let me know if you would like to be alerted to new entries to the blog hop via email. On Twitter, if you want to know what us #groovingmums are getting up to, just enter #groovingmums into the seach box and all will be revealed.

N.B. Yes you are good enough to take part. No, you don’t have to do massive steps, the slightest move forwards counts. You will tap into a lovely group of mums just keen to share the journey with you. Newcomers are really welcome and if you have any questions or concerns, just email me on mums-the-word@live.com

Let’s get grooving!

Recipe for Fiendish Fizzies cupcakes

Makes 36 cupcakes

Ingredients:
1 Free range egg
2 oz Self raising flour
2 oz Unsalted butter
2 oz Caster sugar
1/4 tsp Baking powder
1tsp Vanilla extract
2tsp Coca powder

Decoration:
6oz Icing sugar
3oz Unsalted butter
1tsp Vanilla flavour
1tsp Green food colouring
1 pack of Fiendish Fizzies

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 170C.
2. Cream 2oz of unsalted butter in your food blender. Once smooth add the sponge mix of caster sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, vanilla extract and one large egg. Mix into a smooth batter.
3. Place 36 mini muffin cases into a mini muffin tin and spoon in the batter. Bake for approximately 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
4. Smooth 3oz of unsalted butter. Then add the icing sugar with a small amount of water, mix slowly for two minutes and add the vanilla flavour and green colour. Then mix until smooth.
5. Spread or pipe the icing over the top of the cooled cupcakes. Then decorate with your Fiendish Fizzies. Your cupcakes will need 15 minutes for the icing to set.

www.lovehearts.com

www.heylittlecupcake.co.uk

 

 

You Baby Me Mummy

Simply follow our step-by-step guide and create the scary spiders in their glow-in-the-dark web! All you need is your Dremel Glue Gun and some special glow-in-the-dark hot glue sticks which are re-activated by light to make this spooky addition to your porch or window.

Materials required :

Dremel Glue Gun
7mm Glow-in-the-Dark glue sticks x 5 packs of 15 sticks
38cm wide non-stick baking parchment
Black marker pens, standard and thick
Long ruler or straight edge

Difficulty rating :

One star – easy

To make the spider’s web

Step One
Cut a 70cm piece of the baking parchment and fold it in half lengthways. Make a mark on the folded edge approximately 3cm in from one end. Then measure 62cm along the fold from this first mark. At right angles from this point, measure in 17cm on the parchment and mark this. Then simply draw a line to connect the 3cm mark on the fold with the 17cm in mark using a straight edge and marker pen, as shown below.

Step Two
Then, turn the folded paper over and trace the line to transfer it onto the opposite side of the paper so that you end up with a V shape, as shown below. Using our picture as a guide, draw five slightly curved lines between V shape, making sure they begin and end at equal points on the V.

Step Three
Now, insert a 7mm Glow-in-the-Dark glue stick into your Dremel Glue Gun and set it on the high temperature. Turn the paper over and ‘pipe’ lines of glue along the long lines marked, repeating the process two or three times to thicken the lines and create a stronger result. Connect the long lines of glue by ‘piping’ the short curved lines in between, making sure the lines connect effectively where they meet. Repeat this process five more times to make a total of six web sections.

Step Four
You need to end up with 12 sections, so place a section of web either side of another V drawn onto the paper parchment as before, matching the edges. Use more glue to ‘pipe’ the curved lines in between the two sections to connect them together. This will create the first quarter of the web. To complete your web, repeat with the other sections, then join the three larger sections altogether using the same technique of aligning the sections on either side of the original drawing and using more lines of glue to fill in the gaps. Your web should be complete.

Hanging up your cobweb
To hang up your cobweb, use a staple gun to staple the ends of your web onto the corners of an outside porch or stick over a window.

Attaching your toy spiders
Now, buy either a giant toy spider or lots of small black furry ones from your local toy shop or online, and highlight them with glow-in-the-dark glue. Attach them to the web by tying them to lengths of black cotton or black wool.
Beyond that it is simply a question waiting for darkness to fall! Your web should automatically start to glow as darkness falls because it has absorbed daylight. It may only last for around 30 minutes at a time but you can reactivate it by taking pictures of it using a strong camera flashlight.

The Dremel Glue Gun is available from DIY and craft shops and also online at http://www.dremel-direct.com

Frankenstein Fingers and Sheep’s Eyes

For a bit of Halloween fun, try these spooky ideas! They are quick and easy and get the kids eating veg too!

Fill a small bowl with ready-made guacamole, houmous or other favourite dip. Take 5 baby carrots and take a thin slice off the tip of each. Then use the knife to make a small incision at the base of this cut and push a flaked almond into the slot to look like finger nails! Arrange the carrots into the dip so they look like fingers.

For the sheep’s eyes, peel 4 carrots and thickly slice. Slice a few green stuffed olives and red grapes. Top each carrot slice with a blob of sour cream and the sliced grapes or olives. Arrange the eyes in pairs on a serving plate.