The Spice Shuttle

Ok, I realise this is niche. But if you live in Creigiau, Pentyrch or Radyr you need to know about the Spice Shuttle curry van.

I first noticed the van parked up close to Radyr train station (at the new park and ride) one Thursday evening before Christmas. It happened to coincide with me getting off the train later than usual (after a hotpod yoga class) and feeling too tired to cook. Perfect takeaway conditions.

The offering is simple; £5 gets you a tray of curry and rice (choose from chicken or veggie and your choice of sauce; jalfrezi, korma, rogan josh or dopiaza). It’s an extra 50p for a mini naan on the side. And kids meals (smaller and milder versions of the dishes above) are £4, which includes a naan bread, drink and a toy!

There aren’t many options if you live in Radyr and fancy a takeaway. There’s a lovely Italian in the village and a few places do deliver, but we’re too far away for Deliveroo and Ubereats (the struggle is real, middle class problems etc) So to have the Spice Shuttle is a real treat! We’ve already been a few times.

The Spice Shuttle operates on Wednesdays in Pentyrch (at the rugby club car park), Thursdays in Radyr (opposite the park and ride) and Fridays at Creigiau duck pond, each day between around 5-8pm.

We paid in full for our food at the Spice Shuttle and they weren’t aware I’d be blogging about them.

Find out more on the Spice Shuttle Facebook page

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Mum-to-be massage at Ener-chi, Radyr

I’ve recently had my second baby, a lovely baby girl. Hooray! Pass me the coffee. 

Life with a newborn is already inspiring a number of baby-related posts, but before I get there, I need to post about a couple of pregnancy-related activities I enjoyed or found useful in the last nine months or so.
Now, if you’ve ever had a baby, or know someone who has, you’ll be aware that pregnancy can take a real toll on your body. I’m talking swollen ankles, bad back and numerous other ailments too horrible to mention. Based on my previous pregnancy I knew I’d be tired and achy as I approached my due date, so when I was asked what I’d like for my birthday earlier this year, I asked for a ‘mum-to-be massage’.

During my first pregnancy with my son I had a massage at the Laguna Spa at the Park Plaza which was blissful and made me feel lovely and pampered. But this time I was given a voucher for the Mum-to-be treatment at Ener-chi in Radyr.  

The mum-to-be massage is an hour long treatment, which Enerchi says will be tailored to your individual needs.

The therapist sat me down and asked details about my pregnancy and how I was feeling. I explained that I had some pain in my left hip (I didn’t know that this was the start of PGP – pelvic girdle pain – more on that later!). The therapist explained that she wouldn’t be comfortable putting too much pressure  on my hips but that she would do some reflexology on the area of my foot relating to my hips, which felt lovely and did seem to ease the pain. 

The therapist also explained that most of the massage would take place with me lying on my left side (it’s not safe for pregnant women to spend a long time on their back). In this position she was able to massage my back, neck, shoulders, arms and head, before she moved me onto my back, propping my legs up with a cushion and massaged my legs before moving on to the reflexology. All in all it was a blissful experience and I practically floated out of there! In fact, I was so relaxed I immediately went home and slept for an hour.

 

I must have gone on about how lovely this massage was quite a bit, as my work colleagues purchased me another one as my leaving gift. So two days before being admitted to hospital to be induced, I went back! The therapist was different this time, as was the treatment, but no less relaxing. My hip pain had gone by this point (thanks to a wonderful physiotherapist- details later) so I simply asked for a nice relaxing massage. This time I spent the whole massage on my left side, again being massaged on my back, shoulders and arms. I did ask not to have a head massage this time as I was going out afterwards so didn’t want oily hair! The therapist also used hot stones this time, which I really love and made a nice change from the previous massage. 

As I mentioned, it’s worth noting that around the 30 week mark of my pregnancy, I started to experience a lot of pain in my hips and was diagnosed with PGP. This gradually got worse, to the point where even driving the car was agony and I needed a trained physiotherapist, rather than a treatment massage. I was referred to the NHS but warned there would be a long wait. Thanks to a recommendation on Twitter, I booked an appointment with Nicola Ruth, a qualified physiotherapist based on Cathedral Road. This was a serious solution to a medical problem and NOT the relaxing experience found at Ener-chi, in fact the massage bought tears to my eyes, but Nicola worked right into my painful hips (at one point using her elbow- eek!) Making a huge difference to the condition. I walked out smiling, rather than wincing and hobbling and would really recommend visiting Nicola if you’re suffering from more serious pregnancy-related pain. 

So there we are, a tale of two very different pregnancy massages, both of which made a real difference to me and I wholeheartedly recommend. 

Mum to be massage, £40, Enerchi Radyr

ener-chi.co.uk

Pregnancy massage, £40, Nicola Ruth Pregnancy and postnatal massage

Nicruth.co.uk

All treatments were paid for in full and neither Enerchi or Nicola Ruth knew I’d be blogging about them. 

Review – Cicchetti, Radyr

I love living in Radyr, it really feels like an up-and coming suburb, what with the gorgeous Orchard Cafe, the fabulous Salon Nia and the stalwart Ener-Chi. And now we have Cicchetti to add to the mix, an Italian Deli/restaurant. Cicchetti opened a few months ago and we’d been in for coffee and cake and had a takeaway from there (the pizzas were top notch) but last Saturday we had a babysitter (hooray!) so it was our first experience of a Cicchetti evening meal.

Saturday was a lovely sunny evening and there were plenty of people just enjoying a beer in the sunshine at the pavement tables as we arrived.

We were soon seated inside and given the menus to peruse while we nibbled on a glass of fresh breadsticks.

I went for a Bellini cocktail to start and then some wine and Gavin had a couple of pints of Peroni, which they serve on tap.

For starters we both had calamari. Mine was the Fritto Misto, lightly battered calamari and scampi with a saffron aioli (£5.25) and Gavin’s the Stuffed Baby Squid with Jalapeño Dressing (£5.95). Both were delicious and devoured in minutes.

Fritto Misto at Cicchetti, Radyr
Fritto Misto at Cicchetti, Radyr

On to mains and we both went for linguine – mine with Puttanesca sauce and his with the Pesto (both £7.95).

Linguine Puttanesca at Cicchetti, Radyr
Linguine Puttanesca at Cicchetti, Radyr

For dessert Gavin went for the chocolate brownie (they are stocked by the chocolate brownie company so he knew he would be in good hands). I was stuffed and ummed and ahhed about going for the lemon meringue. In the end I didn’t think I’d squeeze it in, so went for the mango sorbet, which was light and refreshing.

We also had coffees at the end of the meal. The three courses, four alcoholic drinks and a coffee each, came to £55, which I think is incredibly good value. The food and service was great and the atmosphere was that of a relaxed neighbourhood restaurant. Our only tiny criticism was that there is obviously a Queen fan on the staff – the bands greatest hits were blaring out of the place! Don’t get me wrong I love Freddie, Brian et al, but it was a little loud and I saw a few people complaining to each other. It was soon turned down to a more reasonable level and conversations could continue.

Overall we loved Cicchetti, we’ll definitely be back. We’re already planning to visit for breakfast one day soon.

Cicchetti, 8 Station Road, Radyr CF15 8AA

029 2084 8773

We paid in full for our meals and Cicchetti did not know I’d be blogging about them.