Queen of the castle!

Is it cheating? Nah. Well, sort of. It depends on what you call ‘cheating’ …

I found this fab, castle-shaped silicone cake mould (£22), at a lovely new online ‘hot spot’ for cooking and arty-crafty-minded mamas: mumetmoi.com. Founded by Emilie, a UK-based maman of three, it’s a fresh, inspiring resource for arty-crafty and baking ideas and accessories (including many French exclusives). There are lots of smaller, less expensive moulds, too, for making fun-shaped cakes and jellies etc.

Emilie suggests trying her own Yoghurt Cake recipe, found on her blog, which she swears by for using with silicone moulds and involves measuring all ingredients with a yoghurt pot (yet another short cut!). Read more.

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Let it glow …

Like many readers of nonstopmama, my family has its own, heartfelt reasons for championing The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and any organisation devoted to researching a cure, caring for and supporting all those affected by cancer.

How lovely, then, to find a gorgeous scented candle which helps to raise funds for the cause? The Votivo For VOGUE – part of the Aromatic Collection – was created in collaboration with British Vogue, with £5 of the £34 price going to The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity.

VOGUE editor Alexandra Shulman chose the scent, “Smoke on the Water”, which is a seasonally warm blend with caramel musk (which we’ve never come across before, but it sounds yummy), smoked cedar, hickory oak chips and moss. Perfect for warming the spirits and the heart, I’d say.

You can buy the candle at Selfridges, Liberty, Harvey Nichols and online at votivo.co.uk.

HAPPY WEEKENDS, all!!! XX

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Sing it, mama!

Would-be West End divas and rock stars have come a long way from belting out chart hits into hairbrushes and stepping up to the kitchen broom handle-as-mike for impromptu living room shows. Now, they can hone their skills with the help of Karaoke machines and hi-tech singalong computer games (that said, the hairbrush approach will always have its place).

One of the best – and noisiest, in a good way – games nonstopmama has reviewed in any category, Disney’s Sing It: Family Hits (for Nintendo Wii or PS3) features a Disney parade-worthy line-up of film favourites. It includes hits from Beauty And The Beast to The Jungle Book, Cinderella to Cars, Toy Story to Peter Pan, so there truly is something for everyone. Read more.

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Hissyfit – Subscriber giveaway!

Who says fun and sensible don’t mix? In the case of the gorgeous Australian skincare range Hissyfit – loved by make-up artists, beauty insiders and new mum, Dannii Minogue – they certainly do.

More than just a quirky name, Hissyfit formulas provide serious UV protection, all year round – something nonstopmama is passionate about highlighting and which is too easily forgotten (more often than not, busy mums only think seriously about sun protection during summer, when our focus is, rightly, on making sure wriggly kids are well protected!).

Co-founded by a beauty editor and an Olympic Gold medallist (some dynamic duo!), Hissyfit products are great ‘multi-taskers’ – they do the job in question (e.g. body lotion/tinted moisturiser) beautifully, whilst ticking the sun protection box more than sufficiently.

The Saving Face Anti Ageing Foundation (£23) has an SPF 50 + and offers broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays. Meanwhile, the Body Double Anti Ageing Body Moisturizer (£26) has an SPF 30 + (perfect for slapping onto bare legs and arms when the weather warms up and you’re rushing around, doing the school run and basically a blur resembling a person when you stand still).

The sunscreen is “invisible” and the textures lovely – not at all sticky – and the products leave skin with a great, healthy-looking glow (find them at House of Fraser stores nationwide, and online at klmbeauty.co.uk).

Nonstopmama is thrilled to have a set of the Hissyfit Handy Work Anti Ageing Hand Cream and Body Double Anti Ageing Body Moisturizer to give away to 5 email subscribers.

This giveaway has now closed and the winners have been notified.

 

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Five minutes with … Sally Bee

I’ve been truly inspired by bestselling author and ‘home cook’ Sally Bee. A few recipes from the mama of three’s new book, The Recipe for Life: Healthy Eating For Real People, have already become favourites (great, fresh ingredients, not too many steps, scrummy results).

Chatting to Sally mid-book launch, it’s her very ‘real’ positivity and infectious enthusiasm that has made me super-motivated to rethink my eating habits. She certainly makes it easy: the ingredients she draws on are neither too expensive or hard to get hold of and herbs and spices are used in abundance.

But what makes Sally’s mission so inspirational is the extraordinary story behind it. In her first book, The Secret Ingredient, she wrote movingly and frankly of the multiple heart attacks she suffered, out of the blue, at aged 36. Against all odds, Sally survived, hour by hour, day by day, and sought out the healthy eating and living strategies that led to her remarkable recovery.

Writing from the perspective of a wife and mother, both books make for humbling, instantly grounding reads (Sally recalls, for example, taking all day to get washed and dressed so she could be driven to the school gate, step out of the car at the very last minute and greet her five year old son with a hug).

With The Recipe for Life, she looks to the future, giving yet more of her realistic, characteristically ‘can do’ advice for making healthy eating and exercise a part of everyday life. There are heaps of recipes to suit all seasons and tastes (along with some crowd-pleasing puds!).

Here, for nonstopmama, Sally shares some of her guidlines for eating healthily and staying fit and well. ‘These simple tips can help you make healthier choices and will be your insurance policy for the future,’ she explains. ‘The most important factors are eating the right kind of food and the right amount and being as active as possible. That doesn’t mean you have to spend every evening at the gym wearing purple lycra, but it does mean that you should walk instead of ride, take the stairs instead of the lift and just move as quickly as you can as often as you can!’.

Sally Bee’s tips for being a healthy nonstopmama! Read more.

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    Jenni Baden HowardNonstopmama is edited by Jenni Baden Howard, who has written for and worked on a wide range of British glossies, newspapers and online.

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