Category Archives: awards

The MAD Blog Awards 2016

I have some exciting news to share with everyone today. Last night I found out that I had been nominated for a Mum and Dad (MAD) Blog Award in the Best Schooldays Blog category.

Tots 100 Awards

Wow. Isn’t that amazing. A huge thank you to whoever nominated me. Although I’ve been voting for my favourite blogs over the last few years, it never occurred to me that my own little blog might be good enough for a nomination.

And now I’m going to have a little dream about getting shortlisted for the finals. Highly unlikely as only 6 blogs make it through in each category, of which 5 are those with the most votes and I understand that last year over 7000 blogs were nominated. However I can but dream of attending the glitzy gala awards ceremony can’t I?

So if you haven’t nominated anyone yet and have a favourite blog, doesn’t have to be mine, go and do it now. You don’t have to be a blogger yourself to participate. Make someone’s day! Nominations close on 8th April. You’ll find you have to nominate for MAD Blog of the Year first before you reach all the other categories.

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Blogger Recognition Award

I hope everyone had a good Christmas. And now I’m going to round off the year with some great news.

Wow. I have been nominated for the Blogger Recognition Award by Kerry of Kerry Bakes. A huge thank you to Kerry who said she loves following my blog. Do take a look at Kerry’s fabulous baking blog.

Bloggers Recognition Award

So I’ve been challenged to tell you a brief story of how my blog got started and to give some advice to new bloggers.

Well I just kind of fell into blogging. I actually created my blog in order to enter a competition. If I recall correctly, the only entry method was via blog. I didn’t win though and looking back, I can see why. Not only are there no photos, but I seem to have created the post as an aside rather than a proper blog post. I don’t even know what an aside is in the blogging world and have no idea how I managed to create it like that. Can anyone enlighten me on asides please?

Then roll on 4 months before I attempted to do anything else on my blog. This time, sticking with the comping theme, I used it to showcase my children’ artwork where they had won drawing competitions. Followed by my first news post, again sadly lacking in any photos.

Looking back at those initial posts, I have two pieces of advice for new bloggers. Firstly a picture tells a 1000 words, so do illustrate your posts. And secondly if possible, save the pictures on your own library, remembering to get permission to use anything that isn’t yours. I’ve just seen some glaring unsightly blank spaces on my early posts where the picture no longer exists where I had originally linked.

Over the next couple of months I got into blogging properly and my most visited blog post is from this period, although the stats for the rest remain tiny. But then in May 2013, my son was diagnosed with leukaemia and I lost the inclination to blog. So it remained dormant for another 3 months before I returned to it and since then the rest has been history.

A difficult choice, but I’m going to nominate the following 15 blogs in no particular order for The Blogger Recognition Award.

Kim of Northumberland Mam
Rebecca of The Beesley Buzz
Vicki of Honest Mum
Di of Super Lucky
Jane of Onions and Paper
Alison of Dragons and Fairy Dust
Vicky of Single Mother Ahoy
Sarah of Let Them Be Small
Baby Isabella and mum Dawn of Dear Mummy Blog
Chantelle of Mama Mummy Mum
Kate of Family Fever
Rachel of U me and the kids
Fiona of Coombe Mill
Rachael Jess of RachaelJess.com
Colette of We’re going on an Adventure

So to find out the guidelines for the Bloggers Recognition Award please click on the original post on the Edge of night blog, whose owner Eve created this award.

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Winner of 2015 British Turkey Awards Best Blogger Recipe


British Turkey awards best blogger recipe 2015

Wow. Amazing news to share on the blog today. My Flotilla of Pirate Ships was judged the winning entry in the Turkey Blogger Challenge sponsored by Red Tractor. And I was asked to attend the British Turkey Awards to collect my certificate and trophy. I invited my very proud mum along as my +1, because I have my mum to thank for sparking my interest in cooking from an early age when I would help her in the kitchen.

British turkey awards menu

It was a very posh black tie event held at The Dorchester in London. And as expected, turkey was on the menu, but not just for the main course. The starter was a Thai turkey salad, followed by turkey wellington for main. These dishes followed the pirate theme and were also both prize winners for Student Chef of the Year Award. And then a flaming crème brûlée for dessert.

British turkey awards 2015

We were entertained by comedian Mark Watson who also presented the awards and by former snooker player Willie Thorne who hosted the charity auction and raffle. I should have bought one more raffle ticket, as I was one number short of winning a holiday too.

British turkey awards 2015

Captain Jack Sparrow lookalike was also in attendance.

with jack sparrow

Here are some photos of my winning entry. See my original post for the recipes.

Pirate food

Turkey, Broccoli and Apricot Pirate Ship Pies

Stuffed Pepper Pirate Ships

Pirate food

The pirate flags and sails are designs from Cottage Industrialist and Paging SuperMom, used with permission.

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Disclosure: I was reimbursed for the cost of the turkey and Red Tractor products for my entry for the British Turkey Blogger Recipe Competition. 

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

Wow first time that I have been nominated for a Bloggers Award. A big thank you to Lil’ Nibblet’s Nook for the nomination. She is a new blogger with a baby daughter. Do have a look at her blog which covers a mixture of craft, home education, recipes and reviews.

sisterhood of the world bloggers award

Here are the rules for accepting the award:

Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site.
Put the award logo on your blog.
Answer the ten questions they have set you.
Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer.
Nominate ten people.

The questions asked of me and the other nominees were:
(with my answers in blue)
What time is it where you are?
8pm (UK)
What is your ideal weekend?
One when I’m not working in summer, with time to spend having a barbeque in the garden plus a late afternoon or early evening walk on the common.
What have you learned today?
About another family health issue.
Three favourite books: Go!
Labyrinth, Sepulchre and Citadel, all by Kate Mosse
If you could visit any era in time, which would you choose and why?
The 1800s to meet some of my ancestors as I’m very interested in genealogy.
What is the best decision you’ve ever made?
Starting work rather than continuing with further education, as I’m still working for the same employer all these years later, and I was able to take 6 months paid carers leave last year to look after son1 when he was diagnosed with leukaemia.
Top 3 favourite websites?
Twitter, Facebook and Google
Everyone has a favourite food & recipe, what are yours?
My favourite food is fresh cherries and my favourite recipe is Spinach and Cottage Cheese Cannelloni. A meal which the whole family enjoy. I have blogged a variant of my recipe here.
If you could learn a random skill, what would it be and why?
Cycling because I never learnt properly as a child and I’m sure it would be nice to cycle on holiday as a family in a few years time once the boys are confident riders.
Where is your favourite place to take an out of town guest?
One of the nearby National Trust properties, as you can look round the house, take a walk and visit the tearoom.

And I’m now going to ask the following 10 questions
Who inspires you the most?
Where was your best holiday ever?
Your favourite movie?
Your favourite animal?
Which chocolate would you choose first out of a selection box?
What did you spend your first wages on?
Furthest distance you have ever walked in one day?
Your most unusual hobby?
If you could have afternoon tea with any celebrity, who would you choose?
How many lights in your house?

And I’m going to nominate the following 10 blogs in no particular order for The Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award. Sorry to those who I haven’t included. I would have loved to nominate you all.

Kim of Northumberland Mam
Rebecca of The Beesley Buzz
Mommy Cook For Me
Di of Super Lucky
Jane of Competition Grape Vine
Alison of Dragons and Fairy Dust
Vicky of Single Mother Ahoy
Sonia of This Mummy Loves
Sophie of Franglaise Cooking
Jocelyn of The Reading Residence