17 Dec

The Big Christmas Food Shop

If, like me, you’ve got that slightly rising panicked feeling about Christmas Dinner and what the last shop before Christmas Day will cost, stop now and have a little read of Day 17 of my Christmas With Caitríona series.

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01 Dec

December 2018

With the Toy Show being on last night Christmas season has officially kicked off in Ireland; in fact I have a Christmas party to go to tonight. The kids are obsessed with Christmas and their pure joy and delight in decorations in the shops and music playing on the radio is brilliant. As usual for the start of December though I don’t have the decorations up and I’ve no Christmas Tree in the sitting room quite yet.

I know I’m not the only one. I suppose it’s a hangover from the days of being so stressed out about money that we tried not to put the decorations up early or the presents under the tree until we had them bought. It felt like we were making promises to the kids (and to ourselves) that we just couldn’t keep.

The memories of tossing in turning in bed at night wondering how to borrow from Peter and pay Paul will never go away. I hope that they never do because I understand now that they have (a) brought me to where I am today and (b) know exactly what it’s like for those who are struggling at the moment.

Over the next month I’ll have something new each day for you to read or watch. I’ll share my tips on how to prepare for Christmas on a budget; how to not to be a Mammy-martyr in the lead up to the big day, how to ask for help gracefully, and some budget present ideas for all ages.

For today, the first day of December, I’d like to ask you to add 1 small extra item to your grocery shopping this week to donate to your local food appeal. It needn’t be something expensive, even if it’s an extra tin of beans or a bag of rice. If you’d rather not add an extra item in, why not see if you have something in your cupboards already that you’d like to share. Here’s the list from the St Vincent de Paul for their food appeal (this is also suitable for the Lions Club food appeals). Click here for the St Vincent de Paul list.

I’ve got some bags of pasta and some tins of beans which will be brought to our local collection point this week.

Chat tomorrow. Cxxx

01 May

What Will I Do When Things Get Better?

People keep on asking me what will I do when things start getting better. Will we have more money to spend on groceries?  I don’t think we will. Read More

09 Apr

It’s Not A Dream

I originally wrote this blogpost at the end of 2013 and it’s worth revisiting now as tomorrow I officially launch my first cookbook, “Wholesome”. Read More

30 Jan

Batch Cooking

The key to having your meals planned for the week ahead is organisation. That is why I prepare a pile of veg over the weekend and get batch cooking.  Don’t be under any illusions now, I’m no food preparation machine, but it is so easy to lash a dinner together during the week when I’ve put the time in at the weekend.

It goes a bit like this:  Read More

07 Dec

What Motivates Me

Given the time of the year, I’ve come over a little more reflective than normal. Yesterday I recorded a podcast titled “What Motivates Me”. Sometimes recording audio is a good way to explain myself. Read More

03 Oct

Oh So Quiet

You may have noticed it’s oh so quiet here in the Wholesome household. Normally I post new blog updates at least twice a week. There’s always a recipe to be found or tips. At the moment though, I’m lucky if I manage to make it through the day with the same number of children I started with. Read More

12 Aug

Things I’m Loving This Week

Not a review, not sponsored, not requested. In fact I’m going to try not to mention any brands where possible.  There are certain things I’m loving this week that may give you a clue into the mayhem I live in. Read More

31 Jul

Allotment Tales

Our allotment tales are born of long hot days and long hot nights. Even on the stillest day there is a gentle balmy breeze wafting across the site from the sea. Read More

29 May

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

You’re forgiven for thinking I’m talking about the quiz show “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”. I’m not. I’m of course referring to that wonderful song from “High Society” that runs through my head everytime I see a lottery ticket. Read More

20 May

Wonderful Piece Of Fantasy

During an interview last week I was asked if I would go back to my old job if the opportunity presented itself. I got to daydreaming about this wonderful piece of fantasy:

It’s 7.30am and I’m sitting at my desk, suited, heeled, make up in all the right places, hot cup of tea just finished and I’m running through all the emails that have come in overnight.

I’ve been up since 5.30 but in that time I’ve had a hot shower in peace, blow dried my hair commuted over 60km, enjoyed my favourite radio shows and even had a sneaky 40 winks on the train.

Yes, a wonderful piece of fantasy indeed!

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22 Apr

The Next Step

It’ll come as no surprise to some of my readers that I have been working on something bigger than this blog; the next step if you will. I’ve always said that if the blog made a difference to just 1 person then the website was worthwhile. When I started Wholesome Ireland just over a year ago that was my mantra. I repeated it to myself a lot in the early days. Read More

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