Hi everyone thought I would start this blog to keep track of the bits & bobs I get up to each day. I am a stay at home mum with 3 children who are in their teens & twenties. I have had Chronic Lyme Disease for at least 14 years if not more. I am constantly trying to improve my condition. I am a great fan of moneysavingexpert.com and have discovered a few ways of upping my income without too much effort

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Tuesday 31 July 2012

Its hard to believe its the last day of July.

B: Flax muesli
L:chunk of cheese.  Peanuts.  Mixed berries & cream
D: Trout & roasted green beans.  

Really pleased with myself as it was quite late when I got back from shopping today and I was going to reach for something quick for lunch such as oatcakes 7 cheese.   I started thinking what could I have that is quick but low carb.    I thought, I didn't really need much as it was so close to tea time, so I opted for a snack of cheese and  peanuts :D

Monday, 30 July 2012

Monday 30 July 2012

B: 2 boiled eggs
L: 3 sausages, fried egg & mushrooms
D: Kangaroo salad or cooked vegetables.  Blueberries & cream

Have decided I'm not very keen on kangaroo steaks!  I have one left in the freezer so will have to disguise the taste with some spices I think.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Sunday 29 July

B: flax muesli
L: Scrambles eggs & ham, mushrooms & tomatoes
D: Pork chop, cabbage, broccoli, carrots, sprouts.  2 squares of 70% chocolate.

Really craving sweet things at the moment so I bought myself some 70% chocolate in the hope it will satisfy.   Got Father in Law coming for dinner tonight.

Been thinking I may give up my allotment as I'm just not keeping up with it.   Each year I fall a little more behind with its up keep, and this year with the rain it has been really difficult.    After putting in so much effort all I will get from it this year are potatoes, which only my OH will eat.  Just don't think I'm getting enough out of it to justify the £15 per year rent.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Saturday 28 July

Weighed in 2lbs heavier this morning but I'm not going to let it get me down, I will just keep plodding on.

B: flax muesli
L:ham & cheese salad with guacamole
D: Pork curry & flax chapatis. 2 squares of 70% chocolate

Off hunting in Lidl again today with a visit to Sainsbury's thrown in, I need to stock up on flax.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Friday 27 July

B: flax museli
L: Sardine salad, mushrooms cooked in butter.
D: Pork curry with vegetable bhaji.   Berries & greek yoghurt.

Had my hair cut for the first time in a year and it feels soooo good.   It was part of my birthday present but I decided to wait and get it cut now.   I want it to look good for when we go for our spa day 2 weeks from now.  All I need to work on now is my figure.

25 mins of callanetics done this morning.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Thursday 26 July

B; Flax muesli
L: Salmon salad  with guacamole.  Peanuts
D: Pork curry & vegetable bhaji.  Microwave lc sponge pudding.

Off to Julian Graves today, I heard they are closing down so hoping to get some bargains.  Hope I'm not too late.

Couldn't find Julian Graves so the shop must have already closed down.   I will just have to get my flax from Sainsbury's at the weekend.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Wednesday 25 July

B: flax muesli
L: 6 gluten free oatcakes, lactofree spread, lactofree cheese.  Peanuts
D:  Scrambled egg, 4 sausages & mushrooms cooked in butter.

Today I was fed up of eating salad and really fancied cheese & oatcakes, however, I did not enjoy them as much I thought I would.  My tastes have changed and I think I would have preferred the salad after all.

Managed 25 mins of callanetics today.   Also cleaned the bathroom floor and then cleaned the cooker. Not too bad considering it was after 10 am when I woke up this morning!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Tuesday 24 July 2012

Shopping day today but I don't feel like going.  Still feel 'washed out' after my migraine last night.

B: flax muesli & watered down lactofree cream
L:Tuna fish salad
D: Baked trout with almonds.  Roasted green beans

Finding it difficult to work on my blog.  Its the school holidays and I'm having to share computer time with B & A.  Hopefully will be able to work on it on a more regular basis in September.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Flax Muesli - Monday 23 July

Getting a  bit fed up with flax porridge and still not enjoying eating a cooked breakfast so I tried making my own muesli.

B: Flax muesli
L: 2 boiled eggs
D: chicken drumsticks & stir fried vegetables.  (rest of the family will be having stir fry with rice)

Hoping to get to the allotment today to do some 'gentle' weeding.

Flax Muesli

2 tbsp flax
1 tbsp ground almonds
1 tsp linseeds
2tsps roasted chopped hazelnuts (I got mine from (Tesco)

I just mixed the above dry ingredients together and ate with lactofree cream which had been watered down.  I expect you could play around with the ingredients and add extra seeds or perhaps cinnamon for variety.   I must admit it is a lovely alternative to the flax porridge.   I expect if you made up daily portions of this and put them into sandwich bags it would save you making the mix each morning. 

Went to the allotment today and managed 1.5 hours of weeding.  Just need one more session and that bed will be ready to dig over and cover up.    Came home, had a shower and made tea.  Got a really bad migraine and went to bed. 

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Sunday 22 July

Don't have to make dinner until later so should have time for a short walk today.

B: flax & almond porridge flavoured with cinnamon
L: 2 chicken drumsticks  & salad
D: Mince & onions, cabbage, sprouts, broccoli, mashed swede & carrots. Microwave low carb sponge.
Snack: berries & cream.  ( Dinner was much later than usual so needed a snack)

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Saturday 21 July

Weigh in day today and I've lost another 1lb, 0.5 off my waist and 0.5 off my bust.  Earlier in the week I checked my Callanetics book and discovered I wasn't doing some of the excercises as effecitively as I could.   This week I am unable to do any Callanetics as I've been advised not to do strenuous exercise until my gum heals up.   Will have to go for gentle walks whilst its sunny.

B: Flax porridge
L: Tuna fish salad
D: 2 chicken drumsticks & 1 sausage with cauliflower & mushrooms in a cheesy sauce.  Blueberries & cream

Lidl bargains today were 3x sausages for 47p,  Rainbow trout for £2.49 and Kangaroo steaks for £3.99.
Not had kangaroo steaks before so will be interesting.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Friday 20 July 2012

Got my tooth out yesterday, so glad the pain is gone.  Obviously my gum is a bit sore but nothing like the pain before.  Need to eat soft foods today, so will be making menu up as I go along.  I tried to get a protein drink but whilst checking the ingredients noticed it contains lactose , so will have to get by without it.

B: flax porridge
L: 2 boiled eggs and 2 slices of toast
D: 2 tbs lactofree soft cheese.  2 tablespoons of peanut butter.  Blueberries & cream

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Thursday 19 July

Decided to stick to softer foods today, having been in total agony last night trying to eat sausages.  This may mean I will stray from Induction type eating.  I am just fed up of the pain now.  I am taking pain killers less often so perhaps it has improved ever so slightly.  I will give it until tomorrow, if its still the same I will make an appointment for Monday (my dentist is not in tomorrow), so I will have given it a week to 'settle down'

B: Blueberries & cream.  1tbsp walnuts
L: Chicken Soup
D: Homemade Chilli with green beans.

Decided I can't wait all weekend and have made an appointment for this afternoon, hopefully I will get it sorted and be pain free again.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Wednesday 18th July

Well, dentist thinks I have a dying nerve.  If yesterday's treatment doesn't work then will have to have a root canal :(   Dentist thinks a root canal will be difficult to perform as it is in a hard to reach place, if that is the case then the tooth must come out.  Needless to say I haven't felt much like eating.   It hurts everytime I drink something.  Still managed to do 25 mins of Callanetics this morning.

B: 2 boiled eggs, lactofree soft cheese, salad & 4 cherry tomatoes.
L: Cream of Chicken soup.
D: 3 sausages, tomatoes & broccoli.

My daughter passed her driving test this morning, so as a treat we are having strawberries & cream after our tea and she has an opened bottle of champagne from her 18th birthday which needs using up.  I will be having just one glass.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Tuesday 16 July 2012

Woke up yesterday morning with a very painful tooth.  Suffered through yesterday, even pain killers are not taking the pain away completely.  I'm going to try and get an emergency appointment today.

B: chicken salad.  Dandelion root coffee with cream.
L: Chicken & vegetable soup
D: Fish in spicy tomato & onion sauce with roasted green beans.

Just got an emergency appointment at the dentist for 11.55.  So have decided to take a packed lunch with me and then go straight on to do the weekly shopping afterwards.  Today's revised menu is as follow:

B: 2 boiled eggs topped with Lactofree soft cheese. 1 square of lactofree hard cheese.  5 cherry tomatoes. Salad leaves.
L: Chicken pieces.  1 chunk of lactofree hard cheese.  2 tbsps walnuts.
D: Fish in spicy tomato & onion sauce with roasted green beans.

I have put both the original menu and the revised menu to show it is possible to adapt at short notice.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Monday 16th July 2012

Decided to do Induction level of Atkins for two weeks to try and kick start my weight loss.

B: 1 chicken leg &  1 chicken wing.  Salad greens.  4 cherry tomatoes.  Dandelion root coffee & lactofree cream
L: Flax bread with lactofree cheese.  2 tbsps walnuts.

D: Braised pork loin, cabbage, mashed swede, sprouts.

Did 25 mins of callanetics this morning.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

15 July 2012

Feeling a bit fed up today.  Was more disappointed than I thought at not losing weight yesterday.  Either the diet isn't working or I'm doing something wrong.  I keep hearing how others are losing at least 5lbs in their first week and here I am a month in and I've only lost 2lb.   I think I'm getting obsessed about my weight.   Being this size is really getting me down, even my husband weighs less than me now.   Moaning aside, I definately think this is a healthier way to eat, I'm still battling with the amount of fat in the diet but it seems to work for others.   Will just keep plodding on.   I'm dreading putting any more weight on.  I'm also tired from all the extra work involved in preparing this type of food.

B: Bakewell porridge
L: Pork curry & spicy cauliflower
D: Roast chicken ( I will have the leg meat whilst rest of family can have the breast), sprouts, carrots, cabbage, broccoli.   Lactofree ice cream (last of the tub today).

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Spicy Fried Cauliflower - 14 July 2012

Lidl bargains today were, pork rib chops for £1.34.  Got to catch up on doing surveys today.

B: Flax Pancakes with peanut butter.
L: Flax Pancakes with lactofree spread & lactofree cheese.  Peanuts.
D: Pork Curry with spicy fried cauliflower.

Spicy Fried Cauliflower



Cauliflower stalks cut up real small
1 tbsp Turmeric
1 tsp Chilli
Olive Oil

In a bowl mix the turmeric, chilli & salt.   Add the cauliflower and coat it with the spice mixture.  In a frying pan heat the olive oil.   Add the cauliflower and cook until brown & crispy.  These are really tasty and a favourite of mine.  The cauliflower can be swapped for aubergines, courgettes, bhindi (ladies fingers) or for those not low carbing,  chips.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Lactofree Cheese & Garlic Sauce - 13 July 2012

Went to bed much earlier last night.  Feel much more with it today.

Got 1 hours weeding done at the allotment yesterday.   Feel very disheartened, it is just a load of weeds.  None of the swedes have come through.  Have decided once I've weeded the bed I will just cover it up.  It is just too much to cope with in this wet weather.

B: flax & almond pancakes (found this gives a lighter pancake), berries & lf  cream
L: Indian Omelette
D: Roast turkey breast, cheese & garlic sauce, cauliflower & carrots.

Hoping to get 20 mins of callanetics done, plus change two single beds.

Cheese & Garlic Sauce

2 tbsp Lactofree soft cheese
2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed
Lactofree cream

In a saucepan melt a little butter.   Add crushed garlic and cook until soft.  Add the cream cheese, stirring all the time to prevent sticking.   Add cream until you get the sauce to the consistency you prefer.  Serve.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

12 July 2012

Managed to get the ironing done yesterday.  Still feeling a little tired today but must plod on.  Need to get to the allotment whilst its stopped raining.  Feel disheartened in regard to the allotment at the moment.  All I seem to be doing is weeding and not much else is growing.   The potatoes are doing well but  A doesn't like them and I won't be eating them, so once B goes to Uni there will only be G to eat them.  A few parsnips are growing and today I will be weeding the bed where the swede were sown but I think there are only weeds in it.  Not even the green beans are growing much this year, and they always do well, usually.  Still it keeps me fit.  Hope to get 20 mins Callanetics done today too.

B: flax porridge
L: flax pancakes & peanut butter
D: Turkey breast wrapped in bacon served with,  pigs in blankets, cauliflower & sprouts. Blueberry microwave sponge.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

11 July 2012

Had a sleep in this morning and feel a little better.   Managed 20 mins of Callanetics.  Need to get the ironing done today as I've nothing left to wear!  Off to House Group tonight.

B: flax porridge
L; flax pancakes & 2 fried eggs. Peanuts
D:Pork chop roasted with onions  green beans

Snack: walnuts

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

10 July 2012

Had a lovely day out yesterday. We had a short, slow walk beside the river and then had lunch in a coffee shop. On the outside it looked like a 'greasy spoon cafe' but inside we were suprised to see it had been decorated in the style of a 60's American Diner. Whilst looking at the menu outside, we decided I would have a chicken tikka jacket potato with salad and I would give the potato to OH. When it came to ordering it turned out they were out of jacket potatoes, so I asked if I could just have the chicken tikka with salad and they were quite happy to do that It did come with coleslaw which I gave to OH because I really dislike it, in fact I dislike anything with mayonnaise, salad cream or ketchup.

I'm so glad I managed the walk as OH said it was probably about a mile and I haven't walked that far for ages. However, this morning I'm feeling the effects and am really tired, but it was worth it for such a lovely day.

On another note, my DD rang up last night, she a medical student and she told us that she had just seen her first birth that day. She says she is never going to have kids!

B: Flax porridge
L: 6 oatcakes, lf spread, lf cheese.  Peanuts
D: 3 chicken drumsticks.  Mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, roasted green beans.  Blueberry low carb microwave sponge.

Monday, 9 July 2012

9 July 2012

24 years ago today I married my wonderful husband. Today we are going for a drive out to the countryside, stopping off for lunch at a tea room(will have to try and find something low carb). OH knows how much I love the countryside so this is a real treat. I bought OH a CD of songs we used to play when we were courting, so we will be playing that on the journey. B: flax porridge L: ? D: Mince & onions, cabbage, carrots, peas, cauliflower & sprouts. Berries & cream

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Indian Omelette - 8th July 2012 by Linda Graham

B: Flax pancakes, berries & cream
L: Indian omelette.  Peanuts
D: Pork chops, broccoli, sprouts, carrots & cabbage.  Lactofree ice cream.

Indian Omelette

1 Onion
1tsp turmeric
1/8tsp chilli powder

Melt butter in a frying pan.   Fry onions until soft.  Add turmeric & chilli powder.   In a jug beat eggs & cream together, add salt to taste.  Pour egg mixture over the onions and cook as you would a normal omelette.

Saturday, 7 July 2012

7July 2012 by Linda Graham

Today is weigh in day and I'm delighted to report I've lost 2lbs :D    The scales have been stuck at the same weight for so long I was beginning to think  the low carb diet does not work for weight loss.  Now it seems I have found the right level of carbs to start losing weight.  I've also lost another 0.5" so really pleased.  My OH is doing Slimming World and has lost over a Stone, I'm ashamed to say I weigh more than him at the moment, I am determined that will change.  This is just the encouragement I need to continue low carbing.

B: Flax porridge
L: Flax chapatis & cheese. 
D: Sausages, scrambled egg & mushrooms.  Berries & lf cream

Off to Lidl later this morning to stock up on half price low carb stuff.

Its Free Listing on Ebay this weekend so I will be spending quite a lot of time doing that, hopefully it will bring a few pennies in.

Got turkey breasts for half price from Lidl, so guess what I'll be having next week.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Flax 'Chapatis' - 6th July 2012 by Linda Graham

Went to bed a little earlier last night, managed to change the bed yesterday so had a much more comfortable nights sleep.  Got up at 9 am and feel much better.   Still getting hot flushes but brain fog has gone, which is great, I can now concentrate to do surveys etc.   Planning another easy day today, apart from 20 mins Callanetics I've not much else planned.  Today's menu I will be making up as I go along. apart from breakfast I've no idea what to have.

B: flax pancakes, blueberries & blackberries & lactofree cream
L: 6 Nairn's Oatcakes, lf spread & lf cheese.   Peanuts
D: Loin pork chops & salad.  Microwave low carb sponge.

I've just been experimenting and I've managed to make flax 'chapatis'  Will have one with my tea tonight and keep the other for breakfast.

Flax 'Chapatis'




1/2 cup of ground flax (I use Linwoods which I get from Sainsbury's)
1/2 tsp oil
Almond Flour

In a bowl place the ground flax and mix in the oil.  Add water until it forms a dough.   On a clean surface sprinkle some ground almond flour.  Divide dough into two balls.  With a floured (almond flour) rolling pin roll out one dough ball until it is a chapati/flat bread shape.    Heat a griddle/chapati pan.  Place chapati on pan cook on one side for  2-3 mins turn over and cook other side.  Repeat with second dough ball.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

5th July 2012 by Linda Graham

Went to bed last night with a really bad headache and still have it slightly this morning.  Think it must be the pollens.   Got friend coming round this morning.   Have been invited to a coffee morning tomorrow but think I need to give it a miss.  Two nights and a morning socialising is more than enough energy use for one week.  I need to have an easier day and I've decided tomorrow is it!

B: flax porridge
L: Chicken curry & Vegetable Bhaji.  Peanuts.
D: Bolognese sauce on bed of green beans.  Low carb microwave sponge.

Decided to look up 'carb flu' as still don't feel great.  Still got a bit of a headache, feel really tired, muscles have been aching and I keep getting hot flushes (although these could be due to menopause).  I wanted to clarify whether it is a Lyme herx or carb flu.   I found this online which gives examples of other people's carb flu experiences and think that's what it is.  

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Microwave Low Carb Sponge - 4th July 2012 by Linda Graham

Was going to go to the allotment today but the weather doesn't look too good, again!  I can still do callanetics.     Off to church House Group tonight.  May attempt changing one of the beds today.

B: Kippers
L:  Pork loin with salad.
D: Chicken curry with vegetable Bhaji (homemade).   Low carb  microwave sponge

The Kippers are Young's Boil in the bag.  They come with a dollop of butter right in the middle.  Today I cut a hole in the bag took out the butter and replaced it with lactofree spread.

Microwave Low Carb 'Sponge'

25g ground almonds
1 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
3 tsp of splenda (I don't use this)
1 large egg
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp double cream ( I use lactofree cream)
a few drops of vanilla essence


Mix all  the dry ingredients together.   In a plastic bowl melt the butter, add the egg & cream.   Add the dry ingredients and mix. Pour into ramekins/small bowls.    Microwave at 700w for 1min 20.  I usually put a small amount of berries in the bottom of the ramekins as this makes the sponge more moist.   I double up the mixture and get 4-5 ramekin sponges out of it, this will last me almost a week.
I have varied the flavour of the sponge too:  Add a tbsp of cocoa together with a few drops of orange essence to get a chocolate orange sponge.  Not tried yet but I guess you could add any flavour you like using essences.

 I will add the recipe for the Vegetable Bhaji when I've figured it out, I tend to just throw things in the pan.

Weather brightened up so instead of changing the bed I went  to the allotment after all.   Upon getting there I realised I'd forgot to change into my gardening boots!  Still got a little bit of weeding done, although you couldn't see much difference. A few strawberries were ready for picking so will give them to B & A tonight.    Remembered to bring back the spade so OH can put in the dahlia's.  Also checked the blueberry bushes in tubs on our patio, they have LOADS  of berries on them this year, really looking forward to those.

Vegetable Bhaji

1 carrot
1 cup of chopped cabbage
1 cup of carrots chopped quite small.
1 cup cauliflower chopped into small florets
1 onion
2-3 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp  panch phoron (Bengali five spice mix:nigella, black mustard, cumin, fennel and fenugreek. The mix consists of equal ratios of all five) this can be bought from most asian food stores.
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1/8 tsp chilli powder (more if you can take it)

Method Heat a little oil in a pan. Add the bengali five spice & garlic and wait until they are lightly golden brown. Add chopped onion. When onion is softened add turmeric & chilli powder. Add a little water if too dry. Then add carrots & cauliflower. Keep adding small drops of water to stop vegetables from sticking. Lastly add the cabbage. Continue adding water and cook until vegetables are soft (even slightly mushy). Serve. These quantities were enough for two servings. Most Bhaji's start off with the oil, five spice, garlic, & spices. My mum has made bhaji's using, spinach, beetroot leaves, or cauliflower leaves & stalks or even potato leaves. My favourite is spinach & prawn bhaji - cook the spinach as above. In a separate pan, fry prawns in a little oil with turmeric & chilli powder. When the spinach is cooked add the fried prawns, cook for a further 5-10 mins and serve.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

3 July 2012 by Linda Graham

Shopping day today so not much time for blogging.  Doing the shopping and then scanning it all takes me quite a lot of time.  By the time I've shopped & scanned, & had lunch A is usually getting home from school, then it is his 'turn' on the computer. 

Off to visit friends tonight, which will be nice.

B: Kallo rice puffs & watered down lactofree cream
L: Flax pancakes with lf spread and lf cheese
D:  Garlic prawns, roasted green beans & fried cabbage.  Low carb  blueberry sponge

Monday, 2 July 2012

Flax Pancakes - 2 July 2012 by Linda Graham


B: Flax pancakes, raspberries & blueberries & lf cream
L: 3 chicken drumsticks & salad.  Peanuts
D:  Sausage, Mashed swede, broccoli, & sprouts.  Low carb raspberry crumble & lf cream

Tried these pancakes ( they look like griddle scones/scotch pancakes) for the first time this morning and they are delicious, needless to say I will be having them again.   I think I will be able to make a largish batch of these and store them in a tin.  This way I can just take a few out at a time and re-heat for a few seconds in the microwave, alternatively I could eat them cold.  Also because they are unsweetened I can use them for sweet or savoury toppings.  I'm thinking of trying them as a substitute for the oatcakes which I know have carbs in them.    I will then have something to make a quick lunch with on busy days.

Flax Pancakes

1/2 cup flax meal (ground flaxseed)
2 eggs
3 tbsp thick cream (lactofree cream)
3 tbsp milk (or watered down lf cream)
dash of cinnamon (optional)
1/4 tsp baking powder
a little butter or oil

Place dry ingredients into a bowl.   Add the eggs & beat.  Add cream & milk.  Beat/whisk again.  If too thick add a little water, if too thin add a little flax.

Heat griddle or heavy frying pan.  Add a little butter.  Place a small ladle of mixture into the pan and let it cook for a few minutes, turn over and cook the other side..

This morning I have had 6 pancakes  and there is still some mixture left so should do two servings.
2 servings of 2-3 pancakes = 4.5g carbs

I am going to experiment by adding different flavours.  ie. coconut for dessert pancakes or oregano for savoury.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

1st July by Linda Graham

Home alone today.  A has gone walking with the church youth group, OH is taking R back to Sheffield to help her move all her stuff to new digs & B is working.  Got up quite early for a Sunday, & so far have taxied A to church and B to railway station.  Feel tired now but the rest of the day should be relaxing.


B: Kippers
L: Pork, with roasted mediterranean vegetables. Almonds
D 2 Chicken drumsticks, pigs in blankets, salad.  Lf ice cream (my weekly treat until it runs out)