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How to holiday with a baby (what I have learned so far)

How to holiday with the baby (what I have learned so far) If you are following me on Instagram/Facebook then you probably know that I have struggled with the holidays and a baby combination. I just did not find it relaxing and I was missing the holidays I used to have. But the reality is that this is how my life is going to be for good few years so I decided to find a new ways to find a new relaxing. My first stop was to ask my friends who had experience with it. Here is what came up and how did I apply on our second holidays in France. How to holiday with the baby (what I have learned so far) Lower your expectations, first thing I heard from one friend which I must admit made me a bit sad as it sounded a bit negative. However having high expectations is what made me feel disappointed with my first holidays, so this advice totally makes sense! So when we went to France I decided to enjoy as it comes and it really helped for me to relax (not completely but definitely more relaxing). For example, we used Lukas naps for driving to different locations, that way we did not need to wait around for his naps to finish and we could explore different locations in France.

Babysit in turns, was the next advice from another friend. Joni looking after Lukas while I go and do something I enjoy sounds good! Except we preferred walking and enjoying the sights together, so babysitting in turns did not work all the time. Except once when Joni wanted to go on the tour in Fort National (obviously not my cup of tea). He took Lukas with him while I enjoyed the sun on the rocks (much better and more relaxing than it sounds!).  How to holiday with the baby (what I have learned so far) Eat out for lunch and eat in for dinner, because apparently that's cheaper. Well... it turned out to be true! There are plenty of affordable and good meals available for lunch and in rural Normandy where we stayed there were less restaurants open in the evening and everything is more expensive. However I found that's not the only reason why this advice was a life saver!  Because our habit is to put Lukas to bed around 7pm, it just works much better if we eat in while he is asleep which I really enjoyed (especially eating al fresco!).

I did however found that French like to take their kids to dinner which can sometimes be very late in the evening. But in return they put their kids to nap in the early afternoon. Well that is good alternative to keep in mind!How to holiday with the baby (what I have learned so far) After Lithuanian holiday I could also add another advice.

Pack for everything, if you don't have luggage restrictions of course! After Lukas sleep was disrupted by the very light bedrooms in Lithuania, I invested in travel blinds. I have not yet had a chance to use it, because in France the window shutters were unbeatable, but I still think it is worth every penny and I am sure it will come in useful. Every time I pack I carefully think through what I need to make Lukas feel at home as much as possible. Because I just love his routine and would love to keep it as it is during the holiday as well.

We will be off to Centre Parcs next, which I never thought of visiting before. Suddenly it sounds like a much more apealing destination when you have a baby with you. Will let you know how that goes!How to holiday with the baby (what I have learned so far)I hope you found this helpful xx

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Breakfast crepe

Breakfast crepeWhen in France we enjoyed the crepes a lot. They even have cafes called Creperie! Although they are more like a chain of cafeterias rather then a cafe dedicated to crepes. I of course wanted to recreate the experience one morning of eating my favourite crepe for breakfast. This is when I accidentally woke up earlier than Lukas (which does not happen very often unfortunately). I did not use 100% buckwheat flour like they would in France, but I thought 50/50 will do so I don't pull all my hair out while making it. The results are here as follow ;-). Breakfast crepe BREAKFAST CREPE WITH HAM AND EGG makes 4 crepes

  • 50g buckwheat flour
  • 50g plain flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp oil + more for frying
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • about 200ml milk or water

1. I start with making the batter first. Place the flour into the bowl together with eggs, oil, salt and pepper. Whisk everything together into the dry mass. While whisking begin pouring the water (or milk) gradually into the flour mass (not all in one go because you might not need it all). You are aiming for a batter consistency that easily drips down the whisk when held up but still leave temporary traces when whisked.Breakfast crepe Breakfast crepe2.You need to fry crepes in well heated pan with oil. Pour one spoonful to the pan and immediately start swirling round the pan to get nice even layer. I flipped my crepe to fry the other side, but this is completely unnecessary. Once the top is dry to touch you can add some ham and eggs on top and carry on frying just a little longer. Breakfast crepe3. When the egg is done you can fold the edges and serve it warm.Breakfast crepeEnjoy

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Photography challenge: learning new things on holiday in France

View from the lace where we stayed in BuaisLast week we went on our second holiday to France which was much more relaxing than the first one! While we were there I decided to take up another photography challenge. Except I could not think of what I should learn this time in specific, so I thought lets just go with the flow and see what happens. The result? I did learn something that will tell you later later (I am quite excited about it!). For now I would like to talk how I kept my photography challenge as relaxed as possible. We were on holiday after all!

The pictures bellow have been taken around the place where we stayed close to Buais.View from the lace where we stayed in BuaisView from the lace where we stayed in BuaisView from the lace where we stayed in BuaisView from the lace where we stayed in BuaisMy toolsUse any photography tool available, whats wrong with taking pictures on the phone? On our first few trips in France I actually forgot to either charge my camera or left it in the house by accident. My phone was a saviour, I was still able to capture all the moments and the quality does not seem too bad to compare with my DSLR. Ok, you have more freedom with the photo camera but I did survive taking pictures with the my IPhone for quite few years before I got a "real"camera. Can you spot the pictures here that I took with the phone? View from the lace where we stayed in BuaisOur visit to Port de CancaleOn the first day we have visited Port de Cancale. Local caught mussels in wine and chips were fab (even Lukas loved it)! Our visit to Port de CancaleOur visit to Port de CancaleOur visit to Port de CancaleOur visit to Port de CancaleOur visit to Port de CancaleOur visit to Port de CancaleRennes was our next stop. Although we went there only for an attic clear out sale (similar to boot sale here in UK) I really loved the city and its architecture.Our visit to RennesOur visit to Rennes

It's ok to use an Auto mode! I have been using this setting for years and only now started looking at other settings. To be honest, its good to know the other tricks with lighting and focus, but when you taking pictures of quick moments I think there is not enough time to fiddle with the settings. After all often good pics happen with good composition!  Our visit to RennesOur visit to St MaloSt Milo was Joni's place (maybe because of all the forts and castles).Our visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloFort National, accessed when the tide is low! Our visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St MaloOur visit to St Malo

So what did I learn from my holiday challenge? Is how to take photos in Golden Hour! I read about it somewhere long time ago and it sunk into my brain I guess. So when I woke one morning very early and saw a golden glow of the sun everywhere I could not resist but take pics all around me. No wonder its also called magic hour! You just need to catch the right time either in the morning or evening (found good timeline here) and take the shots outside ;-). What I also liked is including sun glare in my composition, it made my photos extra magical!golden hour photographygolden hour photographygolden hour photographyHope you are inspired!

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My very-easy-peasy pesto salmon pouches

My easy-peasy pesto salmon pouches I have been making this for quite a while and it has been our family favourite as it is full of flavour and very easy to make. It does not need added salt so its suitable for babies as well. Although we adults eat it with hollandaise sauce which does contain salt, but its completely fine eating it without. Ready to try? Recipe is bellow ;-).

PESTO SALMON POUCHES makes 4 servings

  • 4 salmon fillets
  • a bag of baby spinach
  • pesto
  • 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
  • hollandaise sauce (optional)

My easy-peasy pesto salmon pouches1. Steam spinach till it starts to wilt, about 2 min.

2. Split spinach into four and place it on separate foil squares (about 20cmX20cm), top it with salmon fillet, pesto and cherry tomatoes.

3. Wrap the salmon to close. Bake the pouches in 200C preheated oven for 25min. My easy-peasy pesto salmon pouchesEnjoy!

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Photography challenge: learning about ISO while in the greenhouse

I have been very busy past month (not only with holidays) but also with Lukas. I only get two hour break a day (I guess I am lucky I hear) so thats all I have mostly for tidying up, getting things organised and little bit for gardening and blogging. So this is why I decided to combine gardening with learning what my camera can do. It was tough two hours ;-).

So we got little green house this year (very tiny, one of those plasticy temporary ones) and I am growing cucumbers and tomato plants in it. I must admit I broke every gardening rule there is, planting plants too close and very late in the season. But I hope I wont get penalised for it and still will get some sort of harvest. As you can see in the pic above it looks very messy and random. This is what my goal was to fix this problem during my two hour slot.

As I was repotting the tomatoes I decided to experiment ISO that sets a sensitivity for a light. The higher the number setting is the more sensitive the camera is to the light. I have learned the other settings that work with the light too like aperture (with f stops ha ha) and shutter speed. But this one is mostly used to set the light, the side effect of it is picture being grainy. I took couple of shots of the tomato plant with different ISO settings but had no luck. I realised that auto camera mode was interfering trying to compensate the light by changing shutter spend (hence blurry pic from my hand shaking)That wasn't the only problem with this photography challenge. For some reason I could not set the camera to a high ISO. I could see it there (from 500 to 1000) but somehow could not select it. So I could only experiment with up to 400 ISO.I set the the shutter speed to 1/20 which allowed me to experiment with ISO and see the results of it. The picture bellow is taken with 200 ISO.This picture is slightly lighter as it has been taken with 320 ISO.The final picture has been taken with 400 ISO. Can you see how light can be edited just by using different ISO settings?By the end of my two hour break I remodelled the green house. Yes, its still not perfect, but I think it will do for now. I hope there will be some sort of fruit coming out soon ;-). I hope you found it useful :-)

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Year two with books: “Riding Rockets” review

My thoughts on Astronaut Mike Mullane memoirI have been holidaying last week even though it did not feel like holidays at all as I had Lukas with me.  It's just not the same anymore! I found it difficult to relax and do my usual holiday stuff such as sunbathing and sleeping (I know, you might be thinking my expectations were very high). I think I will have to find a new way to a holiday and when I do find it I will certainly let you know ;-).

Ok, it wasn't thaaaaat bad! There were handful of people who were willing to look after Lukas sometimes. Therefore I did manage to read through this book that wasn't easy to read at all. All those abbreviations and technical words needed some explanation from Joni. In the end I did enjoy it and thinking to read more astronaut memoirs!

What I like about it? The honesty! It was refreshing and sometimes shocking to hear what Mike Mullane thought about woman astronauts, how his body reacted to space (very private information!) and what they would do to go to space (basically anything). I also enjoyed reading a rich description of a beautiful light show in space.

What I did not like about it? I think reading about Mike's emotional roller coaster while he was waiting to be assigned to a mission and then waiting for it to launch. I found it very tiring to read. His dissatisfaction with NASA management were too depressing. The only thing that kept me going is knowing that this book would not exist if Mike Mullane never went to space.

Is it worth buying it? I think yes, although Joni recommends reading "Carrying the Fire" by Michael Collins. He was the command module pilot on apollo 11! My thoughts on Astronaut Mike Mullane memoirI hope you found this useful ;-)

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Mirror mirror on the wall…

When Lukas learned to roll he never stopped moving. Changing his nappy became such a challenge! This is how the idea of  having mirror over changing unit came about. Since Lukas smiles at the image of himself (he certainly confident about his looks!) I thought having a mirror there would distract him. I of course did not want to spend much money for this so I decided to reuse the mirror I already had. The only issue was with it is that it consisted of squares and I did not like tiled mirror look. This is when I thought of disguising it with geometric design. I got this idea after seeing this mirror in Ikea few months ago.Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetFor this quick DIY I used four 30X30 square mirrors, Command strips (a bit pricey, but it does not damage the wall so win win!), slim washi tape.Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetAs usual I like to plan my design on paper, but it is possible to be spontaneous and create the look as you go. The choice is yours ;-)Geometric mirror DIY on the budget

First I made the initial lines that are not on the mirror joints. Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetThen I applied Command strips on the back ready to apply the mirror squares on the wall. Geometric mirror DIY on the budget Geometric mirror DIY on the budget Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetFinally, I applied finishing lines on the mirror where they meet so they all concealed. Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetI am very pleased with the outcome of this mirror. The only thing that I am not 100% happy is the colour of washi tape when is on the glass. I was expecting it would be bright and bold, but now it rather look pastel. On the other hand Lukas just don't care while applying multiple fingerprints on it. I guess I will have to clean it often to maintain the look. Will let you know if this design lasts.Geometric mirror DIY on the budgetHope you feel inspired!

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Ice cream for breakfast

Ice cream for breakfast! Click here for mango lassi ice lolly recipe ;-)I'm feeling really really hopeful for the summer to come. Hey Summer, don't keep us waiting here!

Anyways, I am still passionate about ice cream and not having great great weather does not put me off from having some for breakfast. This particular ice lolly I tried making the other day is actually specifically for breakfast. It's pretty easy to make too! Just what you need when a sunny morning does finally come :-).Ice cream for breakfast! Click here for mango lassi ice lolly recipe ;-) For these breakfast ice lollies you will need mango lassi that can be bought, although it is so easy to make it yourself. This is how I made mine....

MANGO LASSI adapted from good old Jamie Oliver

  • 3 cardamon pods, seeds out and crushed
  • 1 ripe mango, pealed and chopped
  • 250g natural yogurt
  • 50g ice cubes (if serving straight away)
  • runny honey (just a drizzle)

1. Place all the ingredients into food processor, whizz a little and voila!Ice cream for breakfast! Click here for mango lassi ice lolly recipe ;-)2. Serve with fresh mint Mango lassi Mango lassiMANGO LASSI ICE LOLLIES

  • Mango lassi (recipe above)
  • Hand full of granola (can be shop bought as well)
  • Fresh mint, finely chopped

1. Mix the mint into the lassi.

2. Pour the lassi into ice lolly mould and sprinkle granola on top.

3. Freeze for at least 4 hoursIce cream for breakfast! Click here for mango lassi ice lolly recipe ;-) Ice cream for breakfast! Click here for mango lassi ice lolly recipe ;-)Happy hot weather longing ;-)

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Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements

Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements This month's photography challenge have been the most enjoyable so far. It includes patterns and flowers, my two favourite things! Although I don't feel like I learn anything other than what camera settings do not work and that I probably need to invest some money on lighting. Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Arranging patterns is something I enjoy and I believe it is what I am good at (heaving my big headed moment over here). However photographing it is quite a different story. When it came selecting camera settings I thought if I use highest f-stop (more about f-stop read here) I could select a large depth and therefore everything would look clear and focused. The outcome was not what I expected. The picture bellow looked blur with f22 which is why I ended up using the macro setting.Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements The other thing I knew I needed to perfect is the lighting. Since the patterns need to be repetitive I thought even lighting would be the best. To do that I needed the light glowing from above, which why I decided to do my shoot outside. Because only outside the natural light is all around you unlike indoors it only comes from the windows. I chose the day that was cloudy rather than sunny as I certainly did not want any harsh light. The turnout again was not that great. I still had some shadowing on one side of the picture. I don't know why...

The other problem I encountered when photographing is the wind. As you can see in the picture bellow it was hard to keep my arrangements stationary :-D.Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangements Although I did not have much success with this challenge, I really enjoyed picking all these flowers, all found in our garden :-).Photography challenge: flower pattern arrangementsHave a lovely weekend xx

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My sugar free diet: update

Evil cookies!!Since my sugar free diet is officially over (thanks to evil cookies above), I thought I will give you some feedback. Some of you may know I removed sugar from my diet in March and April which was the longest I survived without eating something sweet. So I am really pleased with that at the least :-).

In the beginning I avoided foods that have added sugar, but I soon realised there were sooo many alternatives available that are almost as good as a chocolate cake! I guess you don't realise that because there are not many cakes like that available ready made. This is why I went mad over pinning hundreds of recipes on Pinterest that are raw and sugar free. I tried few of them myself ;-).

Here came the April and I decided to make it a bit strict. I chose to avoid all types of sugar which if you have any idea is very very hard to do. Sugar (even natural sugar) is everywhere. Fruits are the more obvious, but little did you know even milk contains small amounts of sugar. So I really had to restrain myself. I think what really helped is munching on nuts (which has small amounts of sugar as well in case you wondering). I think I ate so many that I was wondering is I am going to experience some sort of side effects. Thankfully nothing happened and I did not develop any nut allergies (feel sorry for all of those who suffers from it!).

Anyhow, so what are my overall feelings about sugar free diet? I I think it's great if you can stick to it! Personally I think it is simple diet, no special meal planing, all you need to do is don't add sugar to your food or check your food labels. After all if it taste sweet then probably it has high contents of sugar.

Did I loose any weight? Yes, although not much. I lost about 5kg through two months period which is little to compare how much I usually loose on any other diet. I guess I can blame my very slow metabolism after having a baby!

Did I feel more energetic? A lot of people shared with me that they feel so much more energetic after quitting sugar. Well, this did not work out for me. I felt the opposite, very very sluggish in fact. I wonder why? Maybe the hormones (after having the baby) or maybe that was a "cold turkey" I was experiencing.

Am I less of sugar addict? I think yes! I find it much easer to survive a day without a cake. Although I don't say no if the cake presents itself. I also realised that I don't have to eat the cake if its not my type of cake. I remember I used to eat a cake just because I can and because it is sweet (bye bye boring sponge cakes!). I find myself asking, do I really want this cupcake with icing? The other day I learned to make icing rose decoration for a cupcake, I was super pleased I gave it to Joni instead as I realised I would not enjoy it that much other than sugar satisfaction. Almonds are great when on sugar free dietHope you found my story inspiring ;-)

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Lukas room update: changing unit with tray

Lukas bedroom update: change drawers makeover So here we are! Lukas room have been painted (not perfectly, but it will do for now) and furniture moved in. There are still plenty things to get done here, but at least it is functional and Lukas does not seem to be complaining. Lukas bedroom update: Change drawers makeover Probably the most used furniture right now is the changing unit that have had it's makeover long long time ago (about one month before Lukas was born).  Finally I am able to share about the process how I got it to current state.Lukas bedroom update: Change drawers makeoverIt was once a chest of drawers and it was in very bad state. It did not need to have huge makeover, but it did needed some tlc...Lukas bedroom update: Change drawers makeover The main thing I changed are the drawers. I lined them and replaced the knobs to something more excitingLukas bedroom update: Change drawers makeover

Lukas bedroom update: Change drawers makeoverOnce the drawers were ready we decided to build the tray that could hold the changing mat. Joni pointed out that the tray could be removed and used as the drawer once we finished with the nappy changing season (even if it seem it would never end). All sounds good,although there were a slight issue with this idea. The changing mat was hanging over... Lukas bedroom update: custom changing tray DIYI have been reassured that hanging over changing tray would not be a problem. Here are the wood pieces Joni used to make the custom box that were suppose to fit the chest of drawers. Custom changing tray DIY Custom changing tray DIY Custom changing tray DIYLuckily there were some space on the side for extra miscellaneous compartment. Currently it holds the wet wipes, cream and other very necessary stuff that is very handy (I am sure all mums out there would appreciate).Custom changing tray DIY Custom changing tray DIYAnd this is how we fixed the issue of the tray hanging over the drawers. This anti slip mat that you usually use for car is exactly what made it very stable (believe me, we tested it before changing Lukas nappy on it). I of course used my ultimate tool to fix it in (the stapler).Custom changing tray DIY Custom changing tray DIY Lukas bedroom update: custom changing tray DIYHope you found this inspiring :)

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Pinterest challenge: chicken peanut curry

Chicken peanut curry So here I am on the hunt for family recipes. Something simple, quick and mild! So even Lukas could eat it. I decided if I make a folder of recipes than it will be even easer to plan our meals and do Tesco order in lightning speed (well...not really, but still).

I chose this chicken peanut curry recipe because it is promising exactly that. Although it may not be a quick one to make, I found it easy to adapt it and cook it using slow cooker. So its ready when you are, just need to remember to prepare it sometime during the day (I usually do it during nap time). This chicken is also very mild, but flavoursome and Joni loves peanut butter!Chicken peanut curry CHICKEN PEANUT CURRY adopted from Simply Recipes

  • 600g chicken thigh fillets, cut into chunks
  • 80g plain flour
  • 4 tbsp curry powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • generous amount of oil for frying
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli, sliced (optional)
  • 1l chicken stock
  • 200g crunchy peanut butter
  • juice of half lime
  • handful finely chopped coriander and mint for serving

1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, curry powder, salt and pepper. Toss the chicken pieces to coat.Chicken peanut curry2. Fry the chicken in a large frying pan until the coating sets and browns a little. Once it is done place it into the slow cooker.

3. Add the ginger, garlic, chilli and peanut butter on top of the chicken. Mix everything well to combine. Gradually whisk in the stock, stirring continuously to maintain an even texture.
Chicken peanut curry4. Set the slow cooker on low, medium or high depending on when you are planning the dinner. I tend to set it on high if the dinner is served in three hours.

5. Right before serving add salt and lime juice to taste. Serve with rice and herbs on top.Chicken peanut curryEnjoy!

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Year two with books: “French Kids Eat Everything” Review

My thoughts on "French Kids Eat Everything" bookI finished reading this book last month just in time for Lukas to start solids. And how is that going you may say? Well, Lukas turned out to be a very independent eater and very messy one. Sometimes I feel like dropping off some food at his table and running far far away, because I can't cope seeing him putting the food all over his clothes, hair and face and floor and whatever he can reach. This was certainly not how I planned! When I decided to start weaning Lukas, I had a very clear plan to begin with purees. You see I was quite inspired by the French method to introduce new tastes gradually, which is adding veg purees to their milk (read this in the book). Since I am breastfeeding I have lovingly made all types of milkshakes and froze them into cubes (it was too precious to waste even a drop). That included beetroot, courgette, carrot, spinach all steamed and whizzed in the food processor so I could save all the nutrients. So you can imagine my disappointment when Lukas simply refused to be fed by spoon! He was grabbing the spoon instead and dashing all the contents of it on the floor. At the end I gave in and now I let him feed himself with finger foods which apparently is called "baby led weaning" (never liked the title, baby leading?). At least it seems it is going somewhere although I am really holding on to other "rules" that I learned in this book.

What I like about it? Well... this book is very similar to the previous book I read. Both make an observation on French parenting that is very very similar even though the authors are different and the places they lived in France are different! However Karen Le Billon have focused here on food. And who would argue, French do seem to have a really strong food culture going. So its good to know what French do to help their kids to learn to love food. It was an interesting read and my favourite "rule" was how you should not give up and keep offering (not forcing) different types of foods to your child and not presuming that they just don't like it. It just makes sense that kids at young age have not developed tastes therefore they are still mouldable. That's good news right?

What I did not like about it? Since I read two books about a very similar subject, I will say I prefer Pamela Druckerman's book. First of all she had more chic in her writing. Not too sure if it's because she lived in Paris, unlike Karen Le Billon who lived in countryside. I think Karen herself must have a bit stricter, more controlled personality, because she turned her observations about French parenting into rules which made the book not as fun to read. Pamela on other hand made it sound all very simple.

Is is worth buying it? I would say yes, but if I did it again I think I would rather read "French Children Don't Throw Food" first.My thoughts on "French Kids Eat Everything" bookHope you find this useful :-)

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Photography challenge: shutter speed to capture motion

captured with sports auto setting (no blur in moving objects) When I was searching how to use speed shutter I came across many beautiful pictures like these on Pinterest, which inspired me to do photography focused on motion. Although shutter speed is meant to control the light that comes through the lens it seem that it is often used to capture the moment in very artistic way.

To experiment with shutter speed I chose Lukas as my model since he became a very active boy. I imagined I could achieve a very similar effect in my photography too. Little did I know there were few problems with this. First, I could not stay still with my camera making the whole image blurry. Second (not as crucial), Lukas turned out to be not active enough to create that dramatic shot. However the pic bellow is my favourite, because it shows that I am capable to take a photo of motion. As you may see the parts that are not moving (like the beads on his tummy) aren't blurred, while his hands and legs in particular are blurry and feathery... aww!1/8 shutter speedSo what did I do to achieve this look? Well, I set the shutter to very slow, it being open for 1/8 of a second (I know! that sounds very fast in fact). But what happens if I set a faster shutter speed? The answer is that because the shutter is open for short time there is not a lot of light coming through, therefore it causes the picture being very dark like this one bellow (which been set for 1/60 of a second).1/60 shutter speed I edited the light of the dark picture to see how it came out. I think it looks very clear without any movement fuzz, although I can see some graininess in it. Thank goodness you can actually use other camera settings to make the picture lighter! I will certainly be exploring these options some time in the future. 1/60 shutter speed (edited)The shutter speed for the pic bellow have been set to 1/15 of a second. It all seem sightly blur to me because my hand been shaking as I was holding both Lukas hand and the camera.1/15 shutter speedAnd here is a similar picture with 1/80 shutter speed!1/80 shutter speedAnd same settings for the pictures bellow. Although this came out slightly better as it is little feathery on Lukas left leg.1/13 shutter speed 1/80 shutter speedI hope it all made sense to you ;-)

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Sugar free April

Sugar free banana pancakesSo here is, the end of sugar free (almost) March! It was a great success even though I indulged in lots of sugar during Easter. Could anyone resist all that chocolate going around? I think it was a good learning curve and I am up for another month of trying out this "sugar-free" diet, detox, quitting or what ever else you want to call it!

So here how it went... In the very beginning I was expecting cold turkey sort of stage. But no such thing happened, instead I got little bit of cold. Not sure if it was how my body was coping or just coincidence :-D. I mean, don't get me wrong it was very hard to fight the temptation, but eventually I found the other foods to sweeten my life! Grapes are good for example and bananas of course. I tried making banana 2 ingredient pancakes that you see all over Pinterest (the other ingredient is egg), but I found it not very pancakey, instead it felt like sweet soufflé. At the end I added third ingredient which is flour, which made everything soooo much better. It would of course work with any other type of flour or oatmeal if you prefer.sweetened porridge with oats Then I discovered I could make sweet treats that are sugar free! I even created a board on Pinterest dedicated to raw treats, that are of course sugar free. My favourite are these chocolate energy bars that I made in different variations. Yum! Although I did feel sick few times after consuming too many...Sugar free chocolate energy bar Next, I realised I could introduce chocolate into my breakfast. This was getting suspiciously naughty! I was adding cocoa powder into my oats and sweeting it with dates. I felt like eating a cake for breakfast!Sugar free chocolate aots Few weeks ago I mentioned that I was quitting sugar to my sister. It turned out she was quitting it too!! We must be synchronised ;-). She did questioned my sugar substitutions as I was sipping on wine. Turns out that fruit contain sugar! I mean it's natural, but still sugar!

During Easter I fell back even further... I got tempted by chocolate :(. At least I wasn't alone. Nicola said she was having sugar days as well. Once it was over I was actually glad to resume as it made me pretty sick. So I guess it's good, I can see sugar free March was working for me ;-)Oops!So what is my goal for April? Well, cut out all types of sugar. That includes fruits and wine! Eeeeek! Wish me luck! Will let you know next month how it went :-).

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