France, Mum, Food and Wedding Talk

My mum is my biggest cheerleader. She is impressed by pretty much everything I do which is great and much needed when you are feeling blue. France is one of my homes, her home. An army brat learns to make a home where ever they can!

This little blog is just about me and my mum, France, food and a bit of wedding talk. Hope you enjoy!

Lazy me

When I get to Jarnac I turn into loungy French me. I swan around the house drinking Kronenburg, nibbling of french bread and Port Salut. I am happy as Larry coming back home to France.

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We normally don’t stray to far from Jarnac as my breaks to see my mum are all about relaxation and family not travelling frantically about. We normally end up on the veranda, have big life talks or curled up at night on the sofa chatting nonsense.

Until my parents moved to France I didn’t think of it as a holiday destination which is crazy. I think for couples France is so romantic, chateaus, champagne and amazing food. France doesn’t have to cost a fortune and from Britain it is just a short flight.

Most people tend to go straight to Paris, the French Alps or the south of France and they miss out on all the beautiful cities and towns in between. If you want a relaxing, meandering, brocante filled long weekend then visit France.

I spent a long time on the lawn sipping passion fruit gin and tonics going through my mums floristry books. It so peaceful and beautiful.

All the weight gaining alcohol

This trip was a lovely lazy trip. We went to a vineyard and picked up Cognac Champagne which if you are ever in the area you must try. It is delicious and very rare even in the area. I bought all their stock they had left which was two bottles!

Yum.

My mother is kindly supplying our toasting Champagne from a local vineyard and we cant wait. It is light and not bitter at all, we had it at my brothers wedding in proper champagne glasses ( which I wont be having: tiniest gripe).

All the yummy food

Mum has been learning more french recipes and Eggs Mimosa  is definitely my new favourite. This was one of the best lunches of all time, light and refreshing and enough left overs that I could have it for tea the next day.

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We went to a few restaurants and had amazing steak at both! our aperitif was a lovely Cognac Schweppes.

Although my mum is a wee bit stressed about making my bouquet everything else she is really relaxed about. She cant wait. We had a slightly stressful conversation about the legal part of our ceremony which I am still annoyed about. Annoyed that I have a legal ceremony not the fact that she was talking about it.

It has kind of grown from two people to immediate family but hey, thats okay. It just means our super fancy meal at the Holborn Dining rooms will be at a great affordable London Pub instead.

My sister referenced Kate Winslet’s wedding and I said yes, just like that! Well we all know I love Marianne in Sense and Sensibility!

We also talked about Videographer’s and prices and my brother suggested that I stop focusing on creating these magical Youtube moments and just pay someone to capture the whole day. I think he was right and me and Gav discussed it and we are now just looking for someone to capture our day.

Nothing Fancy

Just withing our budget.

And that’s what I need to focus on. Not creating a stupid Pinterest wedding I need to create a beautiful wedding for me and Gav. A moment in time when our friends and family can drink and be merry.

That’s what we are focusing on, oh and our budget.

At this moment in time I would like to be under our budget not over it!

when I left France and my mum is was so hard. I had to say goodbye to so many of my family in such a short time. My mum is coming over to help with the invites and wedding planning but that’s not till the new year.

Till then it will just be Skype!

Bon voyage mon ami!

Wedding Fitness, Calorie Counting: Can I drink and diet?

I need to focus on my wedding fitness and calorie counting is helping. I know what you are thinking, I don’t have to diet for my wedding. I should just be happy in myself. My body isn’t terrible but I don’t like it.  Body confidence only works if you like what you see. I can’t convince myself that I look good because I don’t.

I don’t.

I thought I would share with you things I have changed. My drinking habits and how I have had to improve with my diet. Wedding fitness is not just for that one day, but the years after it.

I want to be healthy!

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Pints of Larger in Val D’ isere, Apres Ski

Drink

When the cooler months glisten at our doorstep I love a large glass of red in winter (204 calories). In warmer months it is a large glass of cold white wine in my hand (214 calories). But I don’t have one glass, nope, I will have three which is roughly 600 calories…. Your average intake for a woman in 2000! So 600 may not seem so bad but if like me you are a little overweight then those calories add up.

I am less active in the winter, I don’t run or walk as far. So those calories easily turn into pounds.

But I don’t just stick to wine, no.

Not sure there if there is anything better than sitting in a pub, next to fire, puppy at your feet big roast dinner on its way and a lovely pint of ale. You will find me with Doombar (203 calories) and Wandel (185) with a great big smile on myself.

Holborn Dining Rooms

Favourite Place in London, Holborn Dining Rooms they are all gin!

I like a drink,I like to eat. I don’t like moderation so much.

This doesn’t mean I drink all the time, just when I want to relax.

We have a wine rack, it is rather large. Gav bought it online, it is half a champagne rack and holds 60 bottles. It is completely full. We have wine bottles on the floor stacking up, when we have dinner parties we rarely touch it, which is crazy.

Do you do that, buy a new bottle rather than open one you already have?

If I meet up with my friends we will meet for drinks, we have dinner with food and then a few drinks before we hit the road.

If I am travelling by myself then I generally don’t drink too much. I like to have glasses of water when I drink so I stay hydrated. Not a fan of hangovers so I am also not some one who drinks right up until I go to sleep.

I like a drink and I am not going to change that

My friends like a drink too.

I had to cut back, because it is better for my skin and the number of calories are in alcohol is ridiculous.

My main weight is on my belly so that’s food and booze. My beer belly!

My drinking habits had to change… bye bye ale.

Not including holidays and festivals, I have had about 10 beers this year. Wine I have just monitored but prosecco is just a waste of calories!! 80 calories in that tiny glass!

Hello Gin

A single gin and tonic is 59 calories and because my dad taught me how to pour gin and tonic I have always had doubles which contains 112 calories as long as you use slim line tonic. This is one of the best drinks for calorie control. I can plan a few drinks or just burn off the calories.

My gin has gone from Bombay Sapphire to about 30 different gins. I love trying them I even organised a gin tour in London with my best friend and it was brilliant.

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Gin pamphlet I made for Becky’s Epic Gin Tour

I love gin but I don’t care for fancy tonics I am not a gin snob. Schweppes or generic brands are fine, I want to taste the gin! We have super expensive brands and also unusual ones we find in the supermarket on offer or on holiday.

I get a lot of gin for presents and I love it.

Except for the Ferdinand (Gavs Gin which is my absolute favourite) we just open a bottle and drink it. This picture of my gin trolley was when I first bought the trolley. Now I have so many gins they are on both trays and now on the floor under the wine rack.

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I think the most important thing about being healthy is not denying yourself the things you love but understandingwhat you are putting into your body.

When you find out how many calories are in a delicious premade pizza (2000) you start to realise that it really isn’t worth your daily intake.

I said previously that I am using Lose it App. I get to monitor everything. Although it sounds crazy to be like that I actually like it. Scanning in my food, seeing if I have gone over my calorie allowance. It also lets you set an achievable goal. You can adjust it if you want to be more proactive which is what I have done.

My daily allowance is 1376 calories a day.

You can break it up however you like they have suggestions etc. I also put my weight now and what I have lost. It tells me that in 4 months I will lose another stone.

I don’t drink during the week now. I wait till the weekend now and mainly only if we eat out or if it’s a special occasion.

My gin sits expectantly on its shelf, tonic chilling in the fridge with the limes.

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Dalloway Terrace, London

So can I diet and drink?

Absolutely. Moderation is key and not punishing yourself if you do go overboard. I don’t miss it, and I really enjoy my drinks at the weekend.

I am not 20 anymore, I can’t drink without hangovers and I can’t eat without gaining weight.

With exercise and portion control I can do this.

Looking after myself isn’t a chore but it is a challenge, hopefully someday soon it will be second nature.

I see women running, sweating and trying and I just want to high five them all!

If you are trying to lose weight you can do it!

We can do it

Dana