Wednesday, 12 July 2017

HUGE soap

Hello lovely readers. 
You may remember me mentioning that I won a posh bar of soap at the recent school fete we attended. I hadn't really thought about it at the time, but it's a HUGE bar, with no hope of fitting into my little soap dish.

I emailed a soap making friend of mine for advice on hacking it into smaller chunks. A hot sharp knife or cheese wire is the answer. 

She also advised keeping the chunks in the airing cupboard to dry out and make them last longer. 
So they are now living in unlidded jam jars waiting to be used, with the added bonus of scenting my household linens with a gorgeous rose scent.

X x X

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Now you see it...

We're slowly but surely redecorating the house at the moment. Currently we're working on the second half of the down stairs hallway. One of the parts that bother me the most is the ugly Internet router. 

I saw a cracking idea on Pinterest a few days ago. I just needed to find a hardback book the right size. A few quick snips along the internal binding and...

Now my ugly router is much nicer to look at! Sometimes the simplest ideas are the best and one that cost me all of 20p! 

X x X

Hidden needy

I was contacted a few days ago by someone I hadn't spoken in probably a year. She was a neighbour from the far end of the street, someone who I'm only on waving and nodding terms with these days. We used to exchange small talk most days on the preschool run but our daughters had gone to different local schools, and people drift apart.
She asked me for money, she'd run out of gas and electric and had no money until the end of the week. She was desperate and apologised over and over for needing to ask.

As a rule I don't hand out money. I'll lend you £1 because you don't have change for the bus etc but never usually more than that. I don't have money to just hand out like that. But I do have plenty of resources. 
 Yesterday her daughter joined us for dinner and had a nice hot shower. Her mum refused to join us, so I sent the daughter home with a boxed up dinner. I'm hoping mum ate it, I notice she's lost weight. 
I've told them both the offer of hot meals and hot showers lasts for as long as they need it.
The whole thing has made me wonder how many people in the street are struggling without being noticed or feeling able to ask for help? This world can be a lonely and cruel place sometimes. Keep your eyes wide open folks, you might just spot someone you can help.

X x X

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Weekend round up.

On Friday this cheeky young man had his first haircut. Hopefully he'll been feeling a little bit cooler with shorter hair. It's made him look so much older suddenly though, where has my baby boy gone?

On Saturday we were melting and grumpy from the heat. The afternoon was spent in a nice cool bubble bath where we rescued small plastic toys from giant icecubes. 
It was a new activity we hadn't tried before but I highly recommend it. It costs next to nothing and can be on standby in the freezer for the next heat wave.

We also ate ice creams. Does anyone know why toddlers always eat the bottom of the cone first? Almost every parent I speak to had dealt with this phenomena and I'm sure there must be something to it.

Today we went to a local summer fayre. It was one of those lovely ones where the PTA man all the stalls and everything costs 20p/50p. We all enjoyed watching the country dancing, dog agility show and playing on the school playground equipment.

We all had a go on the Tombola and walked away with 4 prizes. A can of ginger beer, a yankee candle, posh soap and a tube of Marks and Spencer body lotion. 
 DD2 was very proud of her prize and fell asleep clutching it on the way home.I'm predicting the next few days will have a distinctive shea butter scent lol.

 Over all its been a very pleasant weekend. 
What have you all been up to?

X x x

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Thursday Tales

DD1 had a taster morning at her junior school today. It seems to have gone well, she found some friends in the playground from our twirling team, which really helped. Nothing is cooler than having friends in older year groups she tells me, bless her. 

Today's after school activities were butterfly related (of course!). We talked about how butterflies eat with their proboscis. I made simple card flowers with a hole in the centre and the girls went from flower to flower using their straw proboscis to sip the nectar. 

We also tried a simple static electricity experiment. Rubbing a balloon on a towel we created enough static charge to make the tissue paper butterfly flap it's wings. I then explained how it worked (mostly to DD1, DD2 declared it magic and wandered off)

We also played with Gmans new board game. I'd picked it up as it was Thomas the tank themed and he liked the little train shaped counters. It had most of the little cardboard counters missing and no instructions but that didn't bother the three of them at all.
In fact all three of them are playing completely different games in this photo, and just sharing the space nicely. 
Luckily I've discovered pennies are the perfect size and weight to replace the missing counters and found the instructions online so tomorrow we can sit down and play it correctly. That's if I'm allowed to join in lol, they might prefer to do it their way instead.

X x X

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Cress Caterpillars

DD2'S class are raising caterpillars this term for their topic of life cycles. They've become her new obsession. Everyday she comes out of school with a new caterpillar fact to tell me. Today I learnt that caterpillar poop is black and very tiny small. Lol. 

Today after school we made cress caterpillars. It's a pretty straight forward craft to make and kept everyone amused for a good 20 minutes of decorating and seed sprinkling fun. 
 Hopefully in a weeks time we will be making delicious egg and cress sandwiches for dinner.

X x X

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Mini holibobs on IOW

On Friday the girls school was closed for teacher training. It was the perfect time to use our Sun holiday vouchers for a weekend break on the IOW!
This weekend we've ridden on ferries across the sea.

Petted the residents at a Donkey Sanctuary.

Enjoyed a Garlic Farm's adventure playground.

Eaten burgers on the top deck of a converted London bus. 

Hitched a lift on the dinosaurs of Black Gang Chine.

And made hundreds of wonderful memories that'll last forever.

Good use of a weekend, I think.

X x X

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Phew. What a weekend!

On Sunday we all got up at 5.30am and drove 2 hours up the road to Trowbridge. It was the location of our first proper Twirling comp. 
The girls preformed 2 routines. 
The first a baton routine set to the Teddy Bears Picnic. The second set to music from the film, Trolls. 

It was a incredibly long down but we did really well as a team. The girls dances came 2nd and 3rd in their categories which is amazing for a team of 4-7 year olds! 
We have 3 weeks to correct any mistakes and we're back for the next comp. 
Lots of practice runs in the garden in the meantime. 

X x X

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Paultons Park Visit

I've never tried uploading videos of Blogger before, so I apologise if I get it wrong. 

X x X

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Ladybird biscuits

The girls have gotten over their circus excitement. Today when I asked what they'd like to do both wanted a ladybird activity. 

With a handful of store cupboard staples we soon had a fab little biscuit decorating activity set up on the dining table. 

All three of them enjoyed spreading buttercream over their biscuits and making patterns with their choc chips. 
Gman has really good fine motor skills and was able to make simple patterns on his biscuits. DD2 eventually became frustrated and opted to sprinkle them on instead. DD1 created beautiful abstract art worthy of the Tate Modern. 

Best of all they tasted delicious!

X x x

Thursday, 15 June 2017

All the fun of the Circus

The circus is in town and that clever Hubby of mine obtained some cracking discount vouchers. Just £3 a seat meant that we could all afford to visit the big top and enjoy the show.
We took our own snacks from home to keep costs down. We didn't tell the children so Hubby disappeared during interval for a few minutes and reappeared with them. 

We picked up our tickets the might before we went and arrived in good time. We were rewarded by having the front row in our section. It gave Gman plenty of room to stretch his legs in the aisle when he got restless. 
It was a great show. Both of the girls came home determined to be jugglers and trapeze artists. Lol

For our after school activity today we decided to recreate a little of the Circus at home. Using scrap card, wool and drinking straws we made several colourful performers.

I think they look rather sweet hanging above the dining table. Both the girls are eager to do more things on the circus theme so watch this space for more activities. 

X x X

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Charity shop bargains

I thought this week was done for amazing bargains after Saturdays free sofa and yesterday's mountain of onions. Turns out that this is the week that just keeps on giving!
First I found Gman a Thomas the tank pillowcase for 50p. We've been watching old episodes on YouTube together and he adores them.
Then I found a book all about mint for 20p. It's full of things to make with mint and has lots of fascinating facts and folklore about mint. 
Last but not least I found a brand new set of pajamas in DD1's size. They are the sweetest green and blue tartan and 100% cotton. I've added them to the Christmas cupboard!

Not bad for £1.70!

X x X

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Mummy, why are you crying?

Because I couldn't say no to a bargain!

5kg of onions for 50p! Guess what is being sneaked into every dinner, snack, dessert etc for the forseeable future. 
If they start refusing to eat them I will threaten them with more stinging nettles!

X x X

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Oodles of Doilie crafts

Look at all this wonderful crafting potential! Be still my heart!
My mum very kindly gifted this pile of potential to me yesterday. I've spent a gloomy wet afternoon hunting for craft ideas on Pinterest and Google, while Gman napped on my lap.
Not having done anything remotely blog worthy today, I thought I would share some of my favourite finds. I warn you in advance....There's a theme you may not be ready for yet.

First up is this super cute garland from Raising up Rubies
I love the simplicity of it. I'm tempted to try making it more festive with Christmas print liners. 

These sweet hanging decorations from Fun EZ crafts come with an easy to follow tutorial. They'd be great to make with the children and easy to adapt to your colour scheme.

But Christmas won't be Christmas without.... doiley angels! The one above can be found here at Craft Town but I warn you in advance it's full of ads and pop ups. Maybe stick to Pinterest?

Pretty Dandy have a host of clever ideas on their page. My favourite were definitely the Tree cards. I can imagine a present afternoon creating them with the children over hot chocolate and mince pies.

 Are you sensing the theme of all these ideas? Me too!

X x x

Monday, 5 June 2017

Forget-me-not cinema

The local arts centre has just started screening classic movies. They are calling it Forget-me-not cinema, with idea of dementia suffers and their carers coming to the screenings. I think it's a wonderful way to stir up some memories for the older generation, and a opportunity for the younger generations to see great movies on the big screen as intended. 
I saw it advertised on Facebook and invited my mum along with me. We both agreed it was a great experience. 
 Hopefully we're able to view a few more. Next month they are showing Brief Encounters!

And because my dear mummy is so wonderful and lovely, my sewing machine has been fixed, cleaned, freshly needled and ready to go.
 A small piece of lint was discovered under the footplate which we believe could have  been the culprit.  
I can't wait to get sewing again!

X x x

Friday, 2 June 2017

Dustbins and Dilemmas

I've reached my plastic bag crisis point. When the 5p bag tax came in I switched over to reusable bags. I now have a fair sized collection of them dotted around the house, buggy and car. But it does mean plastic bags are rarely coming in the house anymore. I've been using bread bags and cereal bags etc for my kitchen/wet rubbish which just about covers what I need after composting and recycling. 
I could start buying in rolls of bags (40 for £1 in poundland) but that feels even worse than reusing a bag from shopping. 
I've consulted a few of my old housekeeping books for research. They all recommended lining the basket with sheets of newspaper. 
Such an obvious solution!
So DH is going to start bringing home the newspapers left at his workplace so we build up a little store of them. He thinks he can easily get 2-3 newspapers per shift at the bookies. Most people only read the racing pages before dumping them onto the table. 
There's other perks to this idea to. Sometimes the papers had vouchers to collect or free gifts, not to mention the cartoon strips, silly horoscopes and crosswords. 

This might actually be one of our better ideas!

X x X

Thursday, 1 June 2017

A Carroty sort of a day

First thing this morning I covered the dining table with lining paper. Then I let the kids loose with Duplo and felt tips. We soon had a delightful sea side town being created complete with a palace for King Thistle and a dinosaur enclosure for the towns resident population. 

While all that excitement was going on, I was pottering in the kitchen and experimenting with some new recipes.
I had a packet of 29p carrots in the fridge that I needed to use up, a quick browse on Pinterest found a wealth of recipes to try.
The two that caught my eye most were carrot and corriander fritters, and carrot cake flapjacks. 
Both recipes have turned out nicely and been well received. I did have to answer a lot a question about the 'green stuff' in the fritters. No one is forgetting I fed them stinging nettles anytime soon lol. (For the record it was only after they'd all eaten and id told them the secret ingredient that they went off it lol)

X x x

P.S - still no luck with my machine :(

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Booooo :(

My sewing machine is on strike. I'm not quite sure what happened but it won't sew more than 3-4 stitches before tangling itself up into horrendous knots and snapping the thread several times :(
I'm hoping my sewing saviour will visit soon and have a quick look for me (please mum?)
In the meantime I am amusing myself by sewing any large scraps into hexagons for a quilt. Small scraps are turning into diamonds for quilting and teeny tiny leftovers are popped into an envelope for cutting and sticking with the children. 

I've just been offered a very sweet toddler quilt cover by a dear friend. It has the cutest hedgehog print on it! I need my machine back. Stat!

X x x

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Blue Floral Hats

My first two creations are complete.
A sweet but slightly tricky sunhat for DD2 was my first try. I found the pattern  and tutorial for free at Oliver and S

My second pattern was this super cute and super simple flower hat. There's no printable pattern for this one just a guide on making the single pattern piece you need.  I made this one for DD1.

However both decided they liked the hats the other way around and swapped them. I've been calling them by their wrong names all day based on their hats.
What's the chances they swap back tomorrow? Just as I've figured out who is who? 

X x X