Category Archives: homemade

Jessys Mum’s Chilli Jam Recipe!

C: if you saw our Summer plans post, you would know that making jams/chutneys is one of my aims for this Summer whilst on maternity leave. I don’t know why, but I find it very therapeutic and this is my all time favourite recipe! Jessy’s mum used to make this, and every time I went round we ate like a whole jar! With cheese, crackers, in sandwhiches… you name it, we couldn’t get enough! Eventually she gave me the recipe so I could have a go at making my own/so I didn’t keep eating all of hers probably! This isn’t a proper jam… as in you wouldn’t have it on toast (although I have tried it, and tbh I would totally eat it again!), but its amazing in sandwiches as a sweet chutney or with cheese and biscuits! It has a kick to it, but isn’t super duper spicy so don’t panic at the number of chilis in there!

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Ingredients:

8 red peppers (deseeded and cut into chunks), 10 red chillies (roughly chopped), finger sized piece of fresh ginger, 8 peeled garlic cloves, 400g can of chopped tomatoes, 1lb 10z of golden caster sugar, 250ml red wine vinegar.

Method:

1. Tip peppers, chilis (including seeds), ginger and garlic into a food processor and blitz until finely chopped – scrape into a heavy bottomed pan.

2. Add chopped tomatoes, sugar and vinegar and then bring to the boil. Skim off any scum and then simmer for 50 minutes or until jam starts to go sticky – stirring throughout occasionally.

3. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes whilst stirring frequently and then allow to cool slightly.

4. Transfer to sterilised jars and then jam mixture will last 3 months.

Hope you guys have a go at this, as it is truly amazing! Let us know if you do (Annie loves it too, I obvs have to take her a jar whenever I make this badboy!) #twolittleowls

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Chloe’s Mums Healthy Fruit & Nut Muffins!

C: I stole this recipe from my mother as last time I went round she had baked these and they smelt SO SO good! I had to eat one immediately (which I blame on being pregnant, not on just being greedy of course) and they are super yummy. My mum gave me the recipe to try at home, and trust me… although I love to bake and have some skills? These are the easiest thing to make ever! And the plus side? They are freezable! Meaning you can make a batch (the recipe makes 12), freeze them and then take one out each day for your breakfast – so good for those of us who are in a rush but want a healthy option for their breakfast!

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Recipe:

Dry Ingredients: 225g plain flour, 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 200g raisins, 200g chopped walnuts

Wet Ingredients: 250ml milk, 1 egg, 175g light brown sugar, 80ml olive oil

Instructions:

Combine all the dry ingredients together in one bowl and then separately combine the wet ingredients together in another.

Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Divide between 12 muffin cases and bake at 180C for approximately 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Seriously… its that easy! I know these aren’t 100% healthy, but they are certainly a better option when compared to a cheeky Starbucks muffin every morning! If you aren’t keen on nuts you could also swap them for some cranberries or other dried fruit! Hope you enjoy the recipe, and let me know if you try them! #twolittleowls

Fabric and Sewing Haul

C: so this morning we did our usual Saturday morning ting and went shopping! But instead of our usual sort of haul, we went fabric shopping instead! Annie is a super good sewer and I am super good at buying things ready made…. So we don’t normally do this sort of thing together! However, Annie found some amazing fabric that I NEEDED for curtains for my new house so we decided to go fabric shopping and then Annie is going to teach me to sew!

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This is the material we bought! The bee material is for my curtains and I’m in love with it. I love it too much to risk ruining so my mum is making me curtains out of this, but Annie is teaching me to make a cushion today.

The rest of the material is Annie’s which she is using for various projects that she will be sharing with you all soon!

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Here is the master at work! She is pro and just made a cushion in the 10 mins I have been writing this…. Mental! So anyway, let us know what you think of these prints and we will be posting the lovely things Annie has made soon, as well as my first attempt… Wish me luck! #twolittleowls

How To: Shabby Chic/Upcycle Vintage Furniture

C: now I hate the phrase shabby chic… my mum says “oh you like shabby chic stuff dont you?” NO THAT’S NEW STUFF THAT LOOKS OLD! I love vintage/antique stuff… so now that rant is over, let me show you how I updated some vintage bedside tables that my lovely auntie kindly gave to us for our new house! So here is what they originally looked like, nothing special/weird gold paint! photo 1(28) What you need: Sandpaper, Paint Brushes 2 pots of paint, one in cream/white, the other in the accent colour to show through! Oak coloured wax 1. Sand the cupboards! You don’t need to remove all the original paint, just sand it enough to remove any bumps and to take the top layer of paint off. This will mean that when you go to paint it, the paint will stick/cover better. 2. Paint in your base/darker accent colour and then leave to dry – note to self do not leave cupboards open if you have weird cats like Annies, as they go and nap in them and get cat hair all in your nice paint. I went for an egg shell blue for this stage.

3. Paint over your accent colour with the paler colour, I chose Antique Cream for this stage, and then leave to dry. You may need a second coat of this colour. 4. Once completely dry, sand along the edges of your cabinet lightly until the accent colour shows through. Keep going until you are happy with the effect! 5. Rub in a layer of the oak effect wax! photo 3(17) So here is our finished cabinets! L decided to sand his all over, whereas I just did the edges – I think mine looks way better on the left, but that is all down to personal preference! We are also going to buy some new door handles for these but we haven’t chose any yet! Let me know what you think, or if you decide to have a go at this yourself! Its the perfect way to update some old furniture rather than throwing it away! #twolittleowls

Starter Stories: Home Sweet Home

AWe have recently been introduced to Compassand decided to join in on their Starter Stories blog post project about our first homes, the ways we have made them our own and our DIY triumphs. Chloe and I have both been wanting to write a post like this for a while, as we have both recently ventured onto the housing ladder and bought our first homes. My boyfriend and I actually moved into our house two years ago, and have been decorating and making it our own ever since. We still have so much to do – living in a DIY project whilst both working full time is neither a quick or easy task to take on, but we are getting there and we are both really happy with the changes we have made so far. When we moved in, our house was perfectly functional, but we (I!) felt the need to really make it our own but I’ve actually found it really hard to decide on themes and colours for each room. I’m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to stuff like this, and I have put way too much pressure on myself to get everything right but I’ve also been worried that once a room is finished, I’ll change my mind within six months and want to redecorate… I do have a habit of that. To get around this, our bedroom is very simply decorated, with cream walls and a cream blind and curtain voiles – after getting rid of the horrible floral wallpaper obviously.





This means that I can change the bedding whenever I like, and it will still coordinate with the rest of the room. At the moment, this is my favourite bedding….



I love the spring colours in it and the vintage florals – and it goes perfectly with the throw my nanny knitted for me. One of my favourite features in our bedroom is my jewellery storage.

I’ve always struggled to store my jewellery – maybe this is something to do with the copious amount I have, but I came up with this idea and finished the project in just a day! You can see the full blog post about how to make these jewellery hangers by clicking here



Moving onto our living area, this is one of our finished rooms. My boyfriend is a plasterer, and although he is very good at his job, it is sometimes hard work to get him to do decorating jobs at home. But when he does plaster at home, he always wants to show off his skills – understandable. So he created these arches above the fire place, and also bought me this beautiful Moroccan lampshade for a birthday; which made me decide to continue with this theme.

This kitchen and second living area is an on going project. The fireplace was actually only replastered a few weeks ago, and my boyfriend also built an area to store logs (having a woodburner as our main source of heat is a very lovely but very messy experience). We are yet to attach a handmade door, but the addition of the tiny alcoves are one of my favourite things in our home. My boyfriend knows how much I love to light candles, and tea lights in jars look so pretty tucked away in here. 



This has also been one of my favourite projects, and something I enjoyed doing because of it’s history. This set of Victorian drawers was my Granny’s, and a little worse for wear when it arrived at my house. But after sanding, painting and some cute new handles I think it looks lovely. And Granny Kath would certainly be proud I think!

Lastly, I wanted to share some of my favourite trinkets with you. Chloe and I love to go to antique fairs, charity shops, flea markets and junk shops because we both love a bargain, and anything that is unusual, old and vintage. I think it’s these extras that make a house a home, and of course a pair of fat, lazy cats. 



I hope you enjoyed having an insight to our home – and I’d love see some of your favourite features in your own homes? #twolittleowls

How To: Ombré Nails

C: so I love a bit of ombré/tie dye, and although I have always liked the ombré nail art I have seen, I have never given it a go before! Please bare in mind that this is my very first attempt, so although it isn’t perfect I wanted to share it with you guys so you can see how easy/not so easy it is! So here it is:

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So to do this, I followed a couple of super easy steps:
1. File, do a base coat. The usual stuff.
2. Paint your nails with your base colour. Usually the palest colour you are using! Allow to dry.
3. Apply your next colour to a make up sponge and start from about one third up your nail. Just do short dabbing motions. Then reapply your nail polish to the sponge and layer up the colour towards the tip of your nail.
4. Once happy with the ombré effect, apply a top coat and allow to dry!

I only used two colours for this, and the ombré effect isn’t super obvious. So I am guessing if you use a third, darker colour then it will be much more obvious!

Let me know what you think of my first attempt! #twolittleowls

Real-Life Valentines Day Gift Ideas

C: I have seen so many Valentines Day gift idea posts floating around, that I decided to take a look and see what everyone is suggesting. Now, this might just be me as I am probs the only girl ever to not be that fussed about V-day (I told L off last year for wasting money on getting posh flowers delivered – I could have bought a dress with that?!) but does anyone really want horrid red/black underwear? Or beauty products/clothes in varying shades of pink that they wouldn’t wear any other time of year? No I think not. There’s nothing wrong with a nice M&S comfy floral set and neutral make up (starting to feel sorry for L here actually…). So here are my more realistic gift ideas, that I think are lovely for v-day but can be appreciated all year round.

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1. The Lush Valentines Day range – I have already hinted (told) L that I want one of everything! Now clearly I will just end up having to buy these for myself, but seriously. Want to treat that beauty lover girlfriend? These will do the trick, plus they might share with you (if they are nicer than me). If Lush isn’t their cup of tea, have a little nose round and see what brands they like and get another bath time treat.

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2. Flowers. Simple and yet effective. Now I know I already said I told L off for doing this for me, but only because I would have been just as happy if he had picked some out the garden for me. Find out what your loved ones fav flowers are (mine are peonies if you fancy treating me), or go for red roses if you aren’t sure.

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3. Imperial Candles – I found these on facebook, and absolutely love the idea! You can get a beautiful candle (pick your flavour too, my fav is the sound of the English Pear & Vanilla) with a beautiful ring inside! You can even pick a ring size (or go for random if you aren’t sure!). For £28.99 I think these are such a clever idea – just make sure your girlfriend isn’t likely to think you are proposing. Although if that happens please do report back as I would find it very amusing.

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4. Go on a couples spa day! Now this is a photo of the Imagine Spa in Kings Lynn that I have visited before and loved, but obviously you would have to pick one that’s closest to you. L would never do this with me, but I think its such a lovely idea and means you both get a treat!

Now obviously, some of these gift ideas are a little pricey (seriously, just go picking wild flowers) so if in doubt, go for home made. Cook a nice meal, or just think of something she has mentioned she likes and get it as a v-day gift. My favourite V-day present is still when L got me The Sims for the Xbox. Hours of entertainment, and although not typically romantic he knew I would love it, and this year we are going for a cheeky KFC with Annie and Jim (#livingthedream)! Let us know what you decide to go for (or if you share this as a hint) #twolittleowls