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Hello! Hooray! blog

I really believe that it is so important to take time out to be creative, so here on my blog you will find lots of ideas of things to do in your creative time.

We spend so much of our lives focussing on our day jobs that we often miss out on time for making, but finding even small amounts of time to create something with our hands can have a big impact on our productivity and well-being.

Chinese New Year

By Clare Albans / February 10, 2013 /

Today is the start of Spring Festival, also known as Chinese New Year, so I’d like to wish you all a Happy New Year! Many of the students who Tom and I work with come from China and no doubt they’ll be celebrating in style! We are often given gifts to mark the celebration, and…

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Falafel Wraps with Grilled Veg

By Clare Albans / February 9, 2013 /

This is the final new recipe that we have tried out this week, and is another from Jamie’s 15-Minute Meals. I’m really impressed with this book – loads of lovely dishes that you can make during the week. As with some of the recipes from 30 Minute Meals it took me longer than the book…

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Chicken with Tomatoes and Peppers

By Clare Albans / February 8, 2013 /

Another of the new recipes that we have tried out this week is Nigella Lawson’s Chicken with Tomatoes and Peppers. This is a super easy recipe to make and it’s really tasty, and you could cook it on a school night which is always great! I also think that leftovers would make an excellent lunch…

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Pork Marsala with Mushroom Rice and Broccoli with Lemon and Parmesan | Hello! Hooray!

Pork Marsala with Mushroom Rice and Broccoli with Lemon and Parmesan

By Clare Albans / February 7, 2013 /

Despite my intention to cook lots of new meals this year, it didn’t really happen in January – but we seem to be making up for it this month! The first meal that we made was a combination of recipes from different books: Pork Marsala with Porcini Rice and Broccoli with Lemon and Parmesan.

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A weekend in Edinburgh: Camera Obscura

By Clare Albans / February 2, 2013 /

One of our friends suggested to us that we visit the Camera Obscura during our visit to Edinburgh last month, and it was an excellent suggestion. When she told us about it, she said that it is quite difficult to describe, but we would know what she meant when we visited. And she was right!…

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A weekend in Edinburgh: Edinburgh Castle

By Clare Albans / January 31, 2013 /

It was my birthday a few weekends ago and we decided that we would spend it in Edinburgh. I’ve never been before, despite it being quite close – except for the time when I changed trains in Edinburgh in order to travel to Perth! Over the few days running up to the weekend, the UK…

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Chicken and Vegetable Cobbler

By Clare Albans / January 29, 2013 /

My goodness, it has been ages since I wrote a post! It has been such a busy couple of weeks – we’ve been away the past two weekends, I’ve been getting used to doing a slightly different job at work and have just generally been quite busy! But I’m back and hoping to get into…

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A walk in the Lakes

By Clare Albans / January 14, 2013 /

  I haven’t had much time for crafting over the past few days so I thought I’d post a few photos from another holiday walk. As I mentioned in my previous post Wandering Around Maryport it’s really easy to get to the Lake District from Maryport, which is brilliant. On the eve of New Year’s…

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Wandering around Maryport

By Clare Albans / January 8, 2013 /

We spent the run up to New Year and the first few days of 2013 in Maryport in Cumbria. Maryport is a quiet little fishing port and is a little off the tourist trail, but that’s exactly why I love it! You can access the Lake District very easily from Maryport and it’s easy to…

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Kitsch Christmas Cake

By Clare Albans / December 31, 2012 /

We spent Christmas in York with my Mum and Dad this year, and had such a wonderful time! It was really lovely to relax and spend some time with them. I just had to share this photo of the cake Mum had made – she said she’d decorated it how I used to do it…

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The making of my Christmas jumper!

By Clare Albans / December 23, 2012 /

Every year we go on a lovely walk from Crosspool in Sheffield to Bamford in Derbyshire, which has become known as ‘The Tinsel Tour’. Tom and his friends started it years ago and yesterday was the 11th Tour (we worked out that it was probably my 6th). The main aim of the walk is to…

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Pastelitos de Boda

By Clare Albans / December 21, 2012 /

Pastelitos de Boda are also known as ‘Mexican Wedding Cakes’, but we only ever make them at Christmas and never really associate them with any other time of year! This recipe is from Tom’s Mum, Helen, and she’s been making them for years. It took me ages to be able to pronounce the name properly,…

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A cold and frosty morning

By Clare Albans / December 2, 2012 /

I love cold and sunny winter mornings when everything is covered in frost. It always looks so beautiful! Now is the time of year when I only really get to appreciate my garden at the weekend when we’re not going anywhere, because during the week it’s dark when we go to work and dark when…

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The Classic Victoria Sponge

By Clare Albans / November 29, 2012 /

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]I absolutely LOVE cake. I could quite happily live without chocolate, but there is no way I could cope without the odd bit of cake and a cuppa! My favourite has to be the classic Victoria Sponge, complete with vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam…mmm…so easy to make and it tastes so good! One to make…

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Jamie Oliver 30 minute Chicken Pie | Hello! Hooray!

Jamie Oliver’s chicken pie

By Clare Albans / November 20, 2012 /

If you haven’t got a copy of Jamie’s 30-Minute Meals: A Revolutionary Approach to Cooking Good Food Fast then it should definitely go on your wish list. A lot of people have complained about the fact that the meals actually take longer than 30 minutes to prepare, because when Jamie does it he has all of his…

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How to make your own ipad case – pdf download

By Clare Albans / November 16, 2012 /

Yesterday I posted a tutorial about how to make your own ipad case, but due to a technological hitch I couldn’t include all of the photos that I wanted to (sorry – maybe it was the person doing it rather than the technology!). So I came up with the idea of creating a pdf document…

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How to make an ipad case

By Clare Albans / November 15, 2012 /

Last week, I became more up-to-date in the technology world because my new ipad arrived! I mainly bought it for work because we’ve recently moved to a new office and have started hotdesking. For those of you who have hotdesked (is that a word?!) the very mention of it may make you shudder. If you…

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Make your own wedding bouquet

By Clare Albans / November 11, 2012 /

We’re trying to keep the cost of our wedding as low as we can without compromising on the things we’d like to have, and one of the ways in which we can do this is to do the flowers ourselves. I started to do a little bit of research into the cost and I just…

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Homemade Pizza

By Clare Albans / November 4, 2012 /

I think that pizza is probably one of the greatest food inventions (Tom would argue that the sausage is, in fact, the greatest food invention, but now isn’t the time for debate!). With a homemade pizza you can make it as healthy or unhealthy as you like, and it tastes great cold too. We often make pizza…

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Low-fat Tomato Pasta Sauce

By Clare Albans / November 4, 2012 /

Before I met Tom, I couldn’t really cook. I could make something that vaguely resembled a stir-fry and I was also good at omelettes, but that was pretty much it. I didn’t have much confidence in the kitchen, and before moving away from home I also didn’t have a lot of time for cooking – I spent most of my time…

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Yorkshire Parkin

By Clare Albans / November 1, 2012 /

For me, Yorkshire parkin is the true taste of Autumn. I’m a proud Yorkshire lass and there is nothing better on a chilly evening than drinking a cup of tea and munching on a slab of this wonderful treat. This is a really great recipe that was published in the Waitrose Weekend magazine on 13th September…

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Pumpkin Carrot and Bacon Soup

By Clare Albans / October 31, 2012 /

Happy Halloween! As you can see we have been busy here decorating pumpkins – as usual, I avoid the really scary stuff and have made the happiest looking pumpkin ever, haha! We are actually not huge fans of Halloween, so this is about all we do (I guess you could say that we’re Halloween scrooges!)…

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A very versatile lamb recipe

By Clare Albans / October 25, 2012 /

This is a great recipe for mince and dumplings and it is one of our household favourites. The reason it is versatile is because you can create several different meals simply by substituting a few ingredients. If you use lamb mince and substitute the dumplings for mashed potato the recipe becomes Shepherd’s Pie, or substitute the lamb for beef mince and top with…

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Bake your own bread | Hello! Hooray!

Bake your own bread

By Clare Albans / October 20, 2012 /

Bake your own bread Today was the first Saturday that I’ve been at home for a few weeks, so I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to bake some bread. I think that some people are put off making it because they think it might take too long or that it might be too…

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A little bit about me and my blog

I have certainly found that being creative has helped to improve my mental health over the past few years. I find that when I have the space to take time out to be creative, I feel like I am working on something positive for me. Craft can't fix everything, but it certainly makes me feel good!

 

I am passionate about being creative with my children as well as working on my own projects, so some of my posts will discuss how we juggle our family time with running a small business and everything else in between.

 

Do feel free to get in touch, either by commenting on a post or by completing the contact form.

Clare Albans Hello! Hooray!
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