Wanted to share a little review on Gousto food delivery boxes after I used Susie Verrill’s 50% off two boxes code… I felt like with that discount it was too good an offer not to try!

First meal - LambFirst meal – Lemony lamb meatballs and warm harissa dressing

Let’s just say – I would only use Gousto again with a 50% off code; the meals are 110% NOT worth full price! Whilst they are quite yummy, and reasonably easy to cook, alongside more or less meeting the time guidelines suggested on the cards (unlike Jamie Oliver’s “15 minute meals” but only if you pre-prepare EVERYTHING 🤪!!) the portion controls are extremely odd, and bulked out with cheap stodginess (rice, for example) which I am NOT a fan of at the best of times (in my head it should be a higher meat/protein/veg content & less carbs… is that just me?!) – yet you STILL don’t feel particularly full after finishing, or an hour or so later you’re hungry again. James and I both found it incredibly odd (and, having spoken to another friend about it, she too had used Gousto and agreed) that the “meat” side of the meals is barely anything – for example, in our blackened chicken, corn and tomato rice recipe (which was delicious), we shared one, normal sized chicken breast between two adults – I mean, what?! When would you EVER do that?! More chicken less rice needed when we recreate ourselves in future!!

Blackened chicken, corn and tomato rice

Despite my fairly negative review, if you still think you’d like to try Gousto, then please do so using my code which will mean you too get 50% off your first two deliveries.. I do think at 50% off the boxes are much more worth it, and if you know you have a particularly busy week ahead of you, they are quite useful for easy, quick, delicious meals, often (like most recipe books I guess!) with things you wouldn’t think to try – a particular favourite of mine was “sprout mash” with our pork belly, sprout mash and red cabbage meal (I was too hungry to remember to take a picture!!) turns out this is the only way I like sprouts! It worked out quite conveniently for us that we received our first box in the week between my egg collection and our embryo transfer, when I somehow still wanted reasonably healthy food but with absolutely zero effort as I had no energy to cook!

My discount code: Gousto – however, if you’re using then maybe let me know, as they also failed to properly apply the 50% off code to my boxes when I ordered so I had to chase for a refund and an apology!!!

Crispy Mushroom Dal, Coriander Chutney

Present Ban; enough is enough.

There is too much STUFF. Too many people. Too many things.

Over the last year or so I’ve noticed myself becoming innately stressed out about “stuff”. We have too much “stuff”. We live in a world where it is easy to buy and chuck out. Although not everyone is as fortunate; I am surrounded by friends and family alike who are fortunate enough; they have a “wealth”. We can buy what we want/need as we want/need it.

I was SO pleased when recently my osteopath shared with me that she had the same views; such a relief to know I’m not the only one feeling hideously ungrateful, spoilt, guilty.

So why do we still insist on presents?

I won’t lie – I do quite enjoy finding, wrapping and giving a good present, but my god do I try and make sure that it is of some use to the receiver. Maybe others do the same for me, but somehow, I’ve accumulated way too much “stuff” over the years and it stresses me out beyond belief. It’s a new, ridiculous anxiety.

I’ve even noticed it now, as my husband is now doing the food shop (occasionally a source of panic attack for me), if he comes home with “stuff” we don’t need I felt my stress levels rising absurdly. We have a beautiful house but it constantly seems to be filled with “stuff” we don’t need and it is causing me ridiculous stress. I have no idea why, and I am pretty fed up of feeling this way, but there is also an easier option; enough with the “stuff”.

I am fed up. I am fed up of the dread that slowly builds over the weeks/months proceeding Christmas/birthday. I am fed up of feeling guilty about being “ungrateful” over receiving a gift that I don’t want or need. I live with an insane amount of guilt, day in, day out, I don’t need this added to it. I don’t need the stress – you might wonder why I’m so stressed about it; I’ve no idea, but I just am.

I’ve said to James for years not to buy me presents – I genuinely mean it; unless it is travel. I’d rather “do” than “have”; and as most of you know, I tend to get my way when I decide it’s time for another getaway! Doing a particular activity/getting away and experiencing the world and what it has to offer to me is far more enjoyable than receiving excessive amounts of alcohol/sweets/chocolate/food/soap (ok maybe SOME soap/bath bombs are nice 😉 but where does it end?! Most of you probably think I have expensive taste, but I am more than happy to.. “take”… the free shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, shower gel, given when we stay away and use those up…!)/STUFF.

So, blanket ban. No more gifts, please. Give to charity. Go on an adventure. Friends; lets go to lunch/afternoon tea/dinner/”do” something fun. Creating memories is far more important than infinite amount of “things” that won’t make us happy; and are definitely making me stressed.