• Gizzi’s Cherry Pie


    “This must be where pies go when they die.” -Dale Cooper

    You must be a lover of Twin Peaks to fully appreciate and respect this pie. This pie is famous to every David Lynch worshipper like me. Not only is it famous but man it tastes damn fine.

    So naturally I use my fellow Twin Peaks fanatic Gizzi Erskine’s recipe because this girl knows how to do it.

    I am going to include her full recipe, I however have a teething baby and a late night (non hang)over that has knocked the wind out of me, so will be cheating and using ready made pastry. I have made this pie twice with homemade pastry and twice with ready made. both delicious. If you have time. Go for it.


    Makes 8 slices: 20 minutes, 1hr rest and cooking time up to 1hr.

    For the pastry

    300g plain flour
    2 tbsp icing sugar
    ½ tsp sea salt
    170g butter, unsalted and chilled
    170g cream cheese
    1 free range egg

    For the filling
    1 kg pitted frozen sour or sweet cherries,
    235 g caster sugar, if using sour cherries, 140g if using sweet
    1 cinnamon stick
    1 star anise
    1/2 orange, juice only
    3 rounded tbsp cornflour

    Ice cream or cream to serve

    To make the filling, mix the cherries with all the remaining ingredients. Let the mixture stand for 20 minutes, then stir once more. Pop into a large pan and then bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and cook for 10 minutes or until the liquid the cherries makes become as a light syrup. Remove the spices and leave to cool. And chill in the fridge.

    To make the pastry pop the flour icing sugar, salt and butter into a food processor and blitz until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add in the edge and cream cheese and blend the dough until it forms a ball. Remove from the processor and knead very briefly to smooth out, divide in two, then chill both portions in the fridge for an 1 hour.

    Preheat the oven to 190C. Roll out half the dough to line a 23cm pie plate or shallow tart tin. Roll out the second half of the dough to form a circle to cover the tin. Put the circle on a sheet of baking paper and chill both the dough-lined tin and the circle in the fridge until needed.

    Pile the cherries into the lined pie plate until it becomes a gently swelling mound.
    Brush the edges of the pastry crust with egg, then lay the pastry lid on top. Trim the edges, then crimp together firmly. Cut a hole in the centre of the pie to allow steam to escape.

    Bake for 40 minutes until the thickened cherry juices bubble up through the central steam hole. If the pastry is darkening too rapidly, cover loosely with tin foil. Serve the pie warm or cold, with white chocolate ice cream or cream.

    This recipe is so easy and is a firm favourite in my house. Let me know if you make it,

    Ali x


  • Turning 6 Months





    So Phoebe is now closer to being one than a newborn. Excuse me whilst I weep at this. I am pretty sure I am not mentally equipped for this baby experience to whizz by this fast.

    Saying that, we are at the point of Phoebe being so utterly fascinated and into everything that I cannot help but really enjoy watching her take this crazy old world in.

    As she has passed the 6 months mark, she has suddenly become a little person. She is no longer just this cute little parasite who thanks you in coos and smiles. She interacts with you and responds. She likes to play games and has started making noises to get my attention. she eats food and eyes up everything that enters my mouth.

    This little person has started to sit up and see the world from a different angle. All these changes are amazing and every day something new happens.

    Things I could live without. Hair pulling. She almost gets this demonic look in her eyes and she takes every opportunity to pull my hair out. Forget tying it up, oh she will find it, like a moth to a flame.

    In fact pulling everything. Necklaces, scarves, beards, you name it. You will be stripped and possibly bleed. Yes she is just exploring but no I do not need my moles removed and I kind of like my hair.

    So as the milestones come thick and fast, I am realising that yes the craziness of motherhood is pretty immense but wow it is precious,

    Ali x

  • Holiday?

    I think we need to come up with a new word for “Holiday”

    If you look up the definition of holiday: It refers to days of rest and recreation…

    Excuse me whilst I pah ha ha all over the computer screen.

    I used to go on holiday, I used to sunbathe all day and drink Pina Colada’s. I used to swim in the pool and read salacious gossip magazines and listen to music.

    Going away with a small one is more like a work trip, a rite of passage. There will be no sunbathing, no cocktails, no flirting with the waiters.

    Instead you are shitting bricks about the bedroom with no black out blinds, and the travel cot that breaks your back. You are cursing because you did not bring enough vests and your small one has taken to crapping up their back.

    That you could of gone away for two nights or three months and still had to take away the same amount of stuff. The stuff that took you two weeks to pack as packing with a small one is a little like torture.

    Sure you have a lovely time and you see things you may not have seen now that you can not lay still for more than ten minutes. You even enjoy yourself and get to have a glass of wine after you have wrestled the small bag of snakes to sleep. *child*

    But Holiday. Nope no siree, not from my experience.

    We need to come up with a new word for it because “Oh my god, I am so exhausted and I am never leaving my black out blinds again, is a little long,

    Ali x

  • The buggy brigade

    I see you buggy brigade, as I walk through town.

    A gaggle of prams, sporting mums with sunglasses on, matching Yummy Mummy bags and hair buns and eyeing up every lone mum.

    I see you as I am holding Phoebe under my arm as she screams for her milk but I am so desperately hungry that I am deep throating a cocktail sausage whilst pushing the pram.

    I see you as I have dried vomit on my shoulder and yesterdays hairdo.

    Like hawks you eye up my beautiful pram and wonder why you haven’t seen me at baby yoga or any of the other 65 baby groups. I see you assessing me and wondering my story.

    I see you and for a moment I wonder myself but then as I walk past I forget you as I push my life home and it is okay,


  • Marley’s World


    As a total bookworm, I jumped at the opportunity to be able to review Marley’s World – Asia by Gemma Byers.

    Now I am very aware that Phoebe is just a baby and is too young to be able to understand about Venomous bites and Forests In Borneo but I also read to her The faraway tree so….

    For this book I enlisted the help of my niece Millie and a five year old.

    The book features Marley a lovable cat that gets to go on various adventures. I was given Asia to read, and having spent alot of time there it was totally apt.

    The children and I were immediately drawn to the beautiful illustrations and Elephant was shouted out with glee.

    Each page is filled with friendly and life like illustrations and facts about the animals of Asia. A nice way it makes it child appropriate is the way the animals interact with Marley the cat. This was noticed by the 5 year old and she liked the familiarity. I believe this was a great way to help them concentrate on the facts.

    At the end of the book I was asked questions and my niece re opened the book to find the elephants.

    I will for sure be investing in the set and saving it for Phoebe to learn with.

    So to summarise, if your child likes to learn but wants to be immersed in child friendly pictures and an oh so cute cat then Marley’s World is for you. There is also an ecological message that makes it also appropriate for older children interested in wildlife and conservation.


    Gemma Byers is on Etsy under the name Marleysworldbooks so head on over there for a peruse.

  • Feeding your way

    I am writing this post because I spoke to someone who said she felt a failure for not being able to breastfeed. Hearing her say failure was gutwrenching.

    Knowing that you have grown a tiny human inside of you and then gone through delivery. That is a bloody miracle. Looking after that tiny human as it grows into an adult, well that deserves a badge of honour.

    How you nourish your child is up to you and you should never feel ashamed if something was not for you.

    I wanted to breastfeed for the beginning. And if I am completly honest I knew it wouldn’t last. If I am really really honest. My wardrobe played a big part in that. Yeah I thought about the fact that living in dresses would make it hard and I didn’t want that. If I don’t mind. Why should anyone else?!

    Now I actually ended up not being able to breastfeed at all because I had post c section complications and was on medicines for so long that pumping to keep the milk flowing whilst I was in hospital made me exhausted.

    I then realised as my newborn drank her bottle and then lay in my arms, that she got all the love and nourishment she needed in that moment. That I was giving her the world, even if it came from a packet.

    Did I fail? No. Has anyone ever made me feel less of a mother because of how my child is fed? No.

    If you ever feel that you failed because of how you feed your child, then I urge you to stop, look at your child, pat yourself on the back for growing and nurturing that little human and give yourself a little more credit,

    Ali x

  • Blog giveaway

    6 Months is almost here. My teeny tiny baby is nearly half a year old already.

    So to celebrate Phoebe turning 6 months on the 2nd of July, I thought I would do a blog giveaway on Instagram.

    Everyone has been so supportive to us on Instagram and it is time I said thanks.

    You know I am a shopper and that I love quirky, vintage and retro style things so I thought it apt to share the love of one of my favourite shops for Phoebe so far. retrokids This shop has won my heart and my wallet and for that all of the prizes are from there with a David Bowie customised baby grow for your dancing pleasure.

    The Prize includes: A lapin & Me woodland doll, A4 fruit print by Dessin Designs, David Bowie baby grow size 9-12months, a vintage style rattle, A woodland rabbit miniature night light, A Lapin & Me mini panda, a make your own banner set and a spinning top toy.

    To be in with a chance of winning all of these: Make sure you are following me on IG asideorderofme tag two friends and repost the giveaway image with 6monthsgiveaway

    The winner will be selected by random on the 2nd of July.

    Good luck and thanks again for your support. I look forward to the next 6 months with you,

    Ali x

  • When the going gets tough…

    When the going gets tough. The tough gets grumpy, teethy, overtired, exhausted and mildly annoying.

    I will admit it. Those mums you meet who can never talk about the bad and crazy moments of parenthood. Those mums drive me batshit crazy. Any mum will know motherhood is yes wonderful but also sometimes weird. And exhausting.

    And it also helps to be able to share the good and bad moments. Stops you from feeling isolated and wanting to occasionally bash your head on the wall.

    Exhibit A: Phoebe the new star of poomageddon, and who will now be known as crapnappy Affleck. Phoebe did one of those poos where she looked like had attended Glastonbury in the rain.

    She also did it after waking me up loads in the night after teething and being miserable and when I was feeling a tad ropey.

    She rolled around in it. It went on my bed. My arms were covered. She got it on her hands and then tried to put her hands in her mouth. I eventually got her to the bathroom and filled the sink up to which her nappy fell on the floor. Shit side down. I yelled and stood in it. It was like a budget version of a carry on film.

    I thought my head was going to explode. Then I accidentally scraped her back on the tap. She did not notice but I sobbed my eyes out at the thought of hurting her. NOW imagine this scene. The sheer ridiculousness of it all.

    Imagine going through this and not being able to laugh afterwards and share it with a friend.

    Shit should always be shared. ALWAYS. Because everyone experiences it and I am not just refering to the poonami kind.

    Don’t be a ‘everything is Peachy, my child farts glitter and eats all her homemade kale and goats cheese muffins, that I made whilst she was having her three hour nap’ parent. We parents need to honestly hear from you.

    If we don’t. How else do we know we are okay and surviving parenthood,

    Ali x

  • Turning 5months and a week of firsts

    PhotoGrid_1433706900800   5 months and a week of so many firsts.

    It began with a spoon. After weeks of her eyeing up my food with puppy eyes, I decided to start weaning her.

    Being my child I knew she would love food and she totally did. We are surfing the bland wave at the moment to adjust her tummy but I am ready and excited to introduce her to all the delights out there.

    Then came her first swim. After buying a gazillion cute swimsuits I thought I should actually put her in one. And the delay was only due to my fear of putting on swimwear.

    Off we went. Her looking adorable. Me in the only thing I had, a maternity swimsuit that made my boobage look mighty big.

    And again she really enjoyed the experience. Even when I made nanna do the dunk. And even when I had a little underwater boob spillage.

    So just when I thought our week had been eventful enough, she started rolling with her homies.

    After days of getting stuck trying. She finally did it. Turned over repeatedly.

    That’s it now, it is all zooming by. The changes are going to keep slapping me round the face until she is a teenager and I am slapping myself round the face.

    But although it has been milestone central it has been such a fab month and I feel this little person I grew has become a real tiny human, imitating, exploring and absorbing pieces of me.

    Though I also have learnt not to talk to her in the voice of the Exorcist anymore as she now does it back. Imagine that in playgroup,

    Ali x


  • I slinged it my way

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    At the moment Instagram has turned into my agony aunt and one of my favourite platforms for advice and communication.

    A few weeks ago I asked the question: What sling should I buy that is easy to use.

    I was overwhelmed and chuffed at all the responses I got and with Ergo, Connecta and Boba being the most raved about, off I went ready to google and explore.

    Then I discovered a free group called a sling library where you can seek advice, try on and even rent a sling before you buy.

    I attended my local one on a Friday and was so impressed at this service run by mums. Mums volunteering their time to support you and ensure you get to grips with the sling that bests suits your needs and let me tell you the choice is overwhelming.

    I left the library with a Connecta that I rented for 2 weeks for £6.50!!! What a service.

    Easy to put on, light, foldable and super comfy. Within minutes I knew that was for me.

    And if by wonderful single mum financed luck. At a nearly new sale the following morning, I came upon a worn twice black connecta for £15. (Retails around £68)

    Totally meant to be.

    Obviously I am not a plain black kind of person so with some left over Frida Kahlo/skulls fabric, we pimped it up Ali Style.

    If you are seeking a sling and feel overwhelmed by choice, I really suggest you see if you have a sling library near you. Saved me hours of net trawling and spending money on something I may not of been suited to,

    Ali xx