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    • freyasmum
    • By freyasmum 3rd Oct 16, 12:37 PM
    • 16,537 Posts
    • 47,356 Thanks
    freyasmum
    Now that Advent Calenders are out, I always buy some and pop them into the food bank on the 20th November so that they can give them to families with children, little things like that mean a lot to children who don't understand why they can't have one.
    Originally posted by Butterfly Brain
    Aww, that's a lovely idea ❤

    There was a definite chill in the air this morning and, when we did our shopping yesterday I noticed that Aldi were sneaking their Christmas stock in. This is my favourite time of year
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Oct 16, 4:28 PM
    • 931 Posts
    • 7,283 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Out of curiosity, are Christmas things cheaper just now (October) as opposed to later November/December?

    I mean, I know the cheapest time is January but do companies push their stock early?
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    Savings Target by June '17 = £1,350/£4,000
    NSD (1/15)
    • Butterfly Brain
    • By Butterfly Brain 4th Oct 16, 11:29 AM
    • 8,754 Posts
    • 60,964 Thanks
    Butterfly Brain
    Just made my first batch of chutneys for the year. A spiced apple and cranberry one. Nice and Christmassy. I'll do another later. Got a few jars for me and a few to give away.

    Testing out a fudge recipe tomorrow too. If it works out I'll make it for Christmas.
    Originally posted by crazy-cat-lady
    I cut my fudge into Christmassy shapes using Christmas cookie cutters such as gingerbread men, stockings, trees, stars etc, put them in cello bags, tie with ribbon and voila a cheap pressie that looks awesome
    Blessed are the cracked for they are the ones that let in the light
    C.R.A.P R.O.L.L.Z. Member #35 Butterfly Brain + OH - Foraging Fixers
    Not Buying it 2015!
    • crazy-cat-lady
    • By crazy-cat-lady 4th Oct 16, 12:34 PM
    • 302 Posts
    • 853 Thanks
    crazy-cat-lady
    I cut my fudge into Christmassy shapes using Christmas cookie cutters such as gingerbread men, stockings, trees, stars etc, put them in cello bags, tie with ribbon and voila a cheap pressie that looks awesome
    Originally posted by Butterfly Brain
    I would do that if I was giving it away, but if this batch and how much has been eaten is to go by I think it'll be staying in the house. Or I'll have to make a lot more. There's a few different fudges I think I'll do. Christmas, mint, dark chocolate and vanilla white chocolate. So maybe if there's enough, some mixed bags might look good.

    Made some chocolate truffles in the shape or and decorated up like Christmas puds too. They worked out well. So those can go on the list to make again.

    I'm going to have gained a stone before Christmas.


    Making some soaps and lip balms to make little sets. Different scents but the soap and lip balms will match each other. Got to wait for my soap mould to arrive. Got it cheap from China, so it's a bit of a wait. I can get on with some crocheting in the mean time. Cat blankets for a local rescue that I do every Christmas.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 4th Oct 16, 2:15 PM
    • 931 Posts
    • 7,283 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    I would do that if I was giving it away, but if this batch and how much has been eaten is to go by I think it'll be staying in the house. Or I'll have to make a lot more. There's a few different fudges I think I'll do. Christmas, mint, dark chocolate and vanilla white chocolate. So maybe if there's enough, some mixed bags might look good.

    Made some chocolate truffles in the shape or and decorated up like Christmas puds too. They worked out well. So those can go on the list to make again.

    I'm going to have gained a stone before Christmas.


    Making some soaps and lip balms to make little sets. Different scents but the soap and lip balms will match each other. Got to wait for my soap mould to arrive. Got it cheap from China, so it's a bit of a wait. I can get on with some crocheting in the mean time. Cat blankets for a local rescue that I do every Christmas.
    Originally posted by crazy-cat-lady
    Sorry to go off topic.

    CCL - I wasn't aware you were such a fudge expert. Hate to bother you, but I don't suppose you have a recipe for a traditional fudge you could share with me please? I find mine ends up too hard and more like Scottish tablet.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    Savings Target by June '17 = £1,350/£4,000
    NSD (1/15)
    • crazy-cat-lady
    • By crazy-cat-lady 4th Oct 16, 2:33 PM
    • 302 Posts
    • 853 Thanks
    crazy-cat-lady
    Sorry to go off topic.

    CCL - I wasn't aware you were such a fudge expert. Hate to bother you, but I don't suppose you have a recipe for a traditional fudge you could share with me please? I find mine ends up too hard and more like Scottish tablet.
    Originally posted by SpekySquarehead
    Expert, I wish! I just like to eat it a lot and making it is cheaper than buying it! And with maternity leave, I have a LOT of time to make it.

    This recipe is really easy and make a yummy chocolate fudge. Actually there are quite a few nice ones on the site;

    https://www.carnation.co.uk/Recipes/64/Easy-Chocolate-Fudge-Recipe

    I've swapped out dark chocolate for white and added some vanilla extract, that works well. And also done one with mint essence where I've used half dark and half milk chocolate. But the base for them all is the condensed milk, butter and sugar one.

    If it sets too hard you can add a bit of butter, heat it and melt it back down, stir it all up again and get it whisked some more and let it set again.

    A good traditional one is;
    http://m.tesco.com/mt/legacy.realfood.tesco.com/recipes/classic-british-fudge.html
    • charlies-aunt
    • By charlies-aunt 4th Oct 16, 6:08 PM
    • 1,538 Posts
    • 13,087 Thanks
    charlies-aunt
    Received my first Christmas card of 2016 today and a present!
    The best things in life aren't things
    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z. Member #58 Duct-tape queen
    2016 is my year of personal change - 4st to lose! now 2st 1lb down with 1st 13lb to go
    Be a diamond in a rhinestone world


    • VfM4meplse
    • By VfM4meplse 4th Oct 16, 10:50 PM
    • 20,479 Posts
    • 40,401 Thanks
    VfM4meplse
    This weekend I received proof that Jesus loves me: I picked up a silicone chocolate mould tray gratis at the local church jumble sale that looks just like this:



    I shall crush up some Kendall mint cake and use it to make after dinner mints to give away at Christmas.

    Great ideas about the advent calendars btw! I noticed that Poundland has them in already, different ones for girls and boys.
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy ...A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win...If in doubt, don't pull out... I love chaz-ing!
    • freyasmum
    • By freyasmum 4th Oct 16, 11:11 PM
    • 16,537 Posts
    • 47,356 Thanks
    freyasmum
    This is my go to recipe for fudge.

    Baileys and white chocolate

    Everyone loves it and it makes pretty presents
    • freyasmum
    • By freyasmum 4th Oct 16, 11:13 PM
    • 16,537 Posts
    • 47,356 Thanks
    freyasmum
    This weekend I received proof that Jesus loves me: I picked up a silicone chocolate mould tray gratis at the local church jumble sale that looks just like this:



    I shall crush up some Kendall mint cake and use it to make after dinner mints to give away at Christmas.

    Great ideas about the advent calendars btw! I noticed that Poundland has them in already, different ones for girls and boys.
    Originally posted by VfM4meplse
    That sounds delicious; will you melt more dark chocolate over them?
    • PlaysNicely
    • By PlaysNicely 5th Oct 16, 7:51 AM
    • 101 Posts
    • 172 Thanks
    PlaysNicely


    Hello, I lurk a lot as I enjoy following the festivities on here. I'd love to join in a bit this year if I may?

    The thing is, we're selling our house (right in town) and moving to a tiny place way out and a quick chat with buyer yesterday revealed that most preferred date is likely to be mid to end November, so I've decided that I should get presents and as many preps as possible out of the way before moving, for several reasons:

    * access to shops etc whilst still at this end.
    * last time we moved / had Internet swapped that well known provider took 12 weeks to sort themselves out, so need to consider no internet shopping either. Unless with dongle of course but still limited and expensive.
    * appliances are all built in at place we're going but it's been empty for a while so have no idea how well they function, so maybe can't rely on them for edible gifts and Christmas preps.

    I tried to talk to OH about this last night but he was horrified that I'd blatantly used the festive C word in a countdown and preparation-laden way and has refused to talk about it, thinks we have enough on our plate with work & the move without thinking about all this too. I can't help him to see that by starting all this now (in good old style fashion) will help to relieve things a bit (including the finances) when we get to the other end! Hmmmm.

    However, I know you would all understand where I'm coming from ... PN x
    Last edited by PlaysNicely; 05-10-2016 at 8:15 AM. Reason: Clarity, reducing muppet handedness of previous typing
    • VfM4meplse
    • By VfM4meplse 5th Oct 16, 7:56 AM
    • 20,479 Posts
    • 40,401 Thanks
    VfM4meplse
    That sounds delicious; will you melt more dark chocolate over them?
    Originally posted by freyasmum
    It is as simple as melting chocolate down and adding ingredients. Toasted nuts and rice crispies work particularly well, judging by the rate of consumption! That tends to be a slab job, rather than moulds. If I'm using moulds, filling 2/3 with melted chocolate and then gently pushing a roasted hazelnut into each compartment gives a good result.

    For the mints I'll wait until the chocolate has cooled down before mixing, otherwise the crystals will just melt. A bit of crunch would be nice.

    Loving the Baileys fudge recipe. Am happy to expand my sweet-making repertoire now that I am in no danger of consuming it myself!
    Last edited by VfM4meplse; 05-10-2016 at 7:58 AM.
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy ...A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win...If in doubt, don't pull out... I love chaz-ing!
    • fuddle
    • By fuddle 5th Oct 16, 8:11 AM
    • 5,377 Posts
    • 82,931 Thanks
    fuddle
    This weekend I received proof that Jesus loves me: I picked up a silicone chocolate mould tray gratis at the local church jumble sale that looks just like this:



    I shall crush up some Kendall mint cake and use it to make after dinner mints to give away at Christmas.

    Great ideas about the advent calendars btw! I noticed that Poundland has them in already, different ones for girls and boys.
    Originally posted by VfM4meplse
    Thank you
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything.
    What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise.
    Only a fool trips on what is behind them.
    • VfM4meplse
    • By VfM4meplse 5th Oct 16, 8:16 AM
    • 20,479 Posts
    • 40,401 Thanks
    VfM4meplse
    I tried to talk to OH about this last night but he was horrified that I'd blatantly used the festive C word in a countdown and preparation-laden way and has refused to talk about it, thinks we have enough on our plate with work & the move without thinking about all this too. I can't help him to see that by starting all this now will help to relieve things a bit when we get to the other end! Hmmmm.

    However, I know you would all understand where I'm coming from ... PN x
    Originally posted by PlaysNicely
    Divorce him grounds of unreasonable behaviour
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy ...A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win...If in doubt, don't pull out... I love chaz-ing!
    • PlaysNicely
    • By PlaysNicely 6th Oct 16, 10:16 AM
    • 101 Posts
    • 172 Thanks
    PlaysNicely
    Divorce him grounds of unreasonable behaviour
    Originally posted by VfM4meplse


    Indeedy. You see, I knew you'd all get where I'm coming from!

    Day off today so a little festive list making will be in order a bit later on I think! I bought some brand new hot water bottles in the summer (reduced price) and am thinking about knitting / crocheting quirky covers for them as gifts, so will investigate that a bit too. Will also help to reduce yarn stash in economical way!

    Feel a bit flat and stressed with house move malarkey so at least by dealing with all things festive, I can plan for something that is definitely going to happen and try to control the cost of it ... the absolute opposite (and therefore complete balance and even therapy) of all things home buying!

    Thanks for having me! PN x
    • Islandmaid
    • By Islandmaid 6th Oct 16, 10:45 AM
    • 2,989 Posts
    • 27,567 Thanks
    Islandmaid
    I have just received the illustrated Harry Potter Books I ordered for DD Christmas present - they are beautiful, I,m not sure I want to give them away now .... She would love them though - decisions...

    Vfm4 - if you need a taste tester
    Note to self - STOP SPENDING MONEY !!


    December GC £0/£0.00
    • VfM4meplse
    • By VfM4meplse 10th Oct 16, 9:25 PM
    • 20,479 Posts
    • 40,401 Thanks
    VfM4meplse
    I had nice Christmassy thoughts when I saw this Nutella tree earlier today. It's easy enough to give this a go nearer the time. For now I'm just craving a Lidl bakery chocolate twist.

    Nutella bread----->

    Chocolate twist----->

    Neither is sugar-free
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy ...A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win...If in doubt, don't pull out... I love chaz-ing!
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 11th Oct 16, 10:16 AM
    • 931 Posts
    • 7,283 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    *drooling*
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    Savings Target by June '17 = £1,350/£4,000
    NSD (1/15)
    • crazy-cat-lady
    • By crazy-cat-lady 11th Oct 16, 11:22 AM
    • 302 Posts
    • 853 Thanks
    crazy-cat-lady
    Hmm. Think I have to tell husband to pick up some puff pastry and some Nutella on the way home for me. I'll give it a go. That and some cinnamon palmiers I fancied having a go of too.
    • Dolly Rocker
    • By Dolly Rocker 11th Oct 16, 11:31 AM
    • 2,657 Posts
    • 7,060 Thanks
    Dolly Rocker
    Oh my, that nutella tree look's amazing!

    Might need to give that a go.

    Dxxx
    Debt Free by Xmas 2017 6,186.67/14,523.76
    Saving for Xmas 2017 0/365
    Goal Weight by August 2017 27lbs/84lbs
    Mortgage Savings 2020 0/25,000
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