A New Chapter

I can remember the day I decided to start a blog. I can also remember trying to come up with a cool name for my blog, and at the time RockandGlitter was it. I can’t remember how or why I decided to go with that name but it’s stuck with me ever since and I’ve rolled with it.

I think I’ve mentioned it before, but  during this year I have been changing the way I blog and make YouTube videos to allow everything to feel more like me.

I’m Alison, I’m nearly 30, I love Doctor Who, drinking Prosecco, I follow Slimming World and I like taking photos of anything and everything. That’s what I want my little space on the internet to be – just me, nothing fancy but something real and authentic. Somewhere I can be proud of.

So, this will be the last time you see me as RockandGlitter because next week I will become www.alisonthursby.co.uk – it’s my name, and I don’t think anything can be more me than my own name.

I hope to see you over there. Nothing will change over here really, just a name – all my previous content will be transferred. I have changed my social media and once everything’s changed I will post all my social media links. I will kind of miss RockandGlitter, it was my baby.

Here’s to nearly turning 30 and starting a new chapter.

Lake District 15

A couple of weeks ago my boyfriend, parents and I (and Daisy, of course) went to the Lake District. We stayed for a few days and had such a lovely time before we headed up to Scotland so I thought I would share some of my photos with you all of our trip.

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We were lucky enough to stay in a lovely cottage in Motherby which is roughly about 7 miles from junction 40 of  the M6. As you can see it had great views which we could look out on every evening from the living room. It also had lovely enclosed garden that Daisy enjoyed walking around and having a few sniffs. There was also a lovely pub nearby which we had a lovely meal at one evening. 

Lake District 16

This photo was from the first day we got there. We went to Glenridding which we’d been to on a previous visit and on the way back stopped by Ullswater and managed to capture this beautiful photo.

While we were visiting we were lucky enough to have some lovely weather which enabled us to go and visit some places we hadn’t seen in our last trip in 2014. Maryport was the first new place we went. It is a beautiful little town which was about 45 minutes away from our cottage (maybe longer if you take the wrong turning, oops!). It had a lovely harbour which we enjoyed a walk around even though it was a bit of a windy day when we went.

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We also took a trip to Grasmere and went on a lovely walk around the village and by the lake itself. Unfortunately we didn’t get any gingerbread much to my Mum’s disappointment but maybe next time.

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On our last full day we visited Caldbeck. Mum had read in the cottage guest book that there was a nice wool shop there so we thought we’d get a few hours there – turns out we got most of the day there. It was a really lovely village and we enjoyed a nice (sometimes steep) walk to see a waterfall. 

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 We had such a nice few days in the Lake District and would definitely go back again. 

June Roundup

June felt like a very busy month and the theme of the month was celebrating birthdays. I spent the first weekend celebrating one of my best friends 30th birthday. A few of us went for a spa day at Bannatynes and I felt very relaxed by the end of my Swedish massage. 

We also celebrated with a lovely BBQ at her house on her actual birthday – she couldn’t have had better weather, it was beautiful. I dug out one of my dresses I haven’t worn since 2014 which also resulted in me writing this post about noticing a difference in the mirror. 

My boyfriend bought me the lovely Long Champ rucksack for achieving my two stone award at Slimming World which has came in handy ever since. I would never have thought at nearly turning 30 that I’d want a rucksack rather than a handbag. There was also a lot of strange, muggy weather in June so we took the fan out of the loft and used that overnight – bliss. I also ended the month by going on a shopping trip to Birmingham with one of my best friends, Kirsty and celebrated her birthday early. I love Birmingham – even more so with the new Grand Central. We managed to shop until we dropped and even catch a bit of football while we were out.

Other things I enjoyed in June:

Game of Thrones Season 6 – I think this was the best one yet, they really spoilt us. I loved it and can’t wait for Season 7.

Snapchat – Yes, I’m VERY late to this bandwagon but after one of my work colleagues explained it to me, I think I’ve finally got my head around it. My username is alisonthursby if you want to add me.

July seems to be flying by already, I think I’ll be in New York before I know it! 

Slimming World Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake Slimming World Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake Slimming World Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake Slimming World Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake Slimming World Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake

On Slimming World it is so easy to make a delicious pasta bake that will keep you full for hours. I would say that I make a pasta bake a couple of times a week. I just love pasta that much! Who’s with me? They are great for making in bulk and even freezing if you wanted to. One of my favourites is my delicious tuna pasta bake.

Today I have a lovely pasta bake recipe for you all which is inspired by my lovely friend Hayley who always posts pictures of her yummy pasta bakes on Instagram. If you aren’t following her, you should be now. 

I’ll be honest and admit that for a long time I wasn’t keen on using syns for sausages as a lot of them are quite high in syn value. Then I heard about the Heck sausages which have been given a big thumbs up by everyone I know at Slimming World. I had been wanting to try them for a long time but my local Tesco only stocked a couple of them but I was finally able to buy them in Asda. I bought the Smoky Paprika Chicken and Zesty Chicken Chipolatas which are absolutely delicious. They are 0.5 syns for two and totally worth it as they add a lot of flavour to this delicious pasta bake.

Spicy Sausage Pasta Bake
Serves 2
A delicious, spicy Slimming World friendly pasta bake
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Ingredients
  1. 70g pasta per person
  2. Sausages (I use Heck)
  3. 2 garlic cloves
  4. 1 red chilli
  5. 1 onion
  6. 1 stalk of celery
  7. 1 carrot
  8. 1 tsp Italian Herbs
  9. Salt & Pepper
  10. Passata
  11. 250ml Water
  12. Chicken Oxo
  13. Fresh Chopped Basil
  14. Mixed Salad Peppers
  15. Frylight
  16. Tomato Puree
  17. Mozzarella (I use half fat)
  18. Basil
Instructions
  1. Firstly, boil your pasta and cook your sausages and set aside.
  2. Finely chop (or blend) your carrot, celery, onion and chilli.
  3. In a pan fry your vegetables in frylight and add in some mixed salad peppers.
  4. Once the vegetables are softened add in your Italian herbs, pinch of salt and black pepper, tbsp tomato purée, then add in a carton of passata, 250ml water and chicken oxo and some fresh chopped basil.
  5. Let it simmer for around half an hour and once thickened to your liking add the pasta and chopped sausages and add to an oven proof dish, tear off your mozzarella and add on top.
  6. Place in the oven on 200 for about 20 minutes or until golden.
Alison Thursby http://www.alisonthursby.co.uk/
 

Why I Love SW

I have followed the slimming world plan for some time now and I absolutely love it to the point I would recommend it for anyone wanting to lose a bit of weight simply because it is a lifestyle and not a diet. I know a lot of people say this and some may not believe you but honestly, it’s the best and I never feel like I’m missing out.

The beauty of Slimming World means that I can have a takeaway, a meal out, a glass or three of prosecco, some chocolate and I can still lose weight. It’s all in moderation but the plan just works, I don’t have to count anything really, just my syns each week and I have to weigh my healthy extra’s which is fine as well. It’s just effortless and the community is fantastic as well, my group is so supportive and I am a member of a bloggers Facebook group and I also have a Pinterest group for inspiration.

Some of favourite meals: I honestly don’t know how I can narrow this down but some of my favourites at the moment are Potato, Leek and Bacon Bake, Bolognese BakeKeema Mince, Enchilada Style Lasagne and Tuna Pasta Bake.

Essentials?  I did a whole video on some of my essentials here but other essentials I would purchase over and over again are oxo cubes (chicken and vegetable mainly), balsamic vinegar, extra lean mince, heck sausages (paprika chicken are my favourite!) and vegetables (celery and carrots are two of my favourites).

Have I learnt anything new? Yes one major thing I have learnt throughout my journey is the simple fact that I can have a life and lose weight. I can enjoy myself, see my friends, go out for a meal, have a drink, go on holiday and I can still lose weight.

Aims overall? My main aim which seems more realistic than it did when I first started is to get to target and stay at target. I know that it won’t be easy to maintain my loss but I also want to get fitter as well as healthier and that goal doesn’t seem so far away now.

Any new dishes to try? I want to try and make some more fakeaway’s at the weekend rather than using my syns on a takeaway. I want to try and make more curry dishes as well.

Wanting to lose? Another 1 and a half stone to get to target ideally. This may change, we will see as I get closer to the original target I had in mind.

If you do Slimming World, why do you love the plan?