Sunday, 24 May 2015

Silent Sunday May 24th

Shell Louise





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Saturday, 23 May 2015

Project 365 - Week 5

Shell Louise

May 16th - This is my new favourite dessert....sweet omelette with fruit, yogurt and squirty cream :)


May 17th - Ella's new bear


May 18th - Ant's been working hard on the waterfall, pond and stream this week. The stream is now running and I love it :)


May 19th - The pond went all green and horrible the other day because the waterfall had to be switched off while Ant worked on it. He emptied it and refilled it then added some plants. Hopefully we won't have to empty it again!


May 20th - 2 for today because I couldn't decide between the photos I took of Kaycee and Ella!



May 21st - Nanny had a robin's nest in the garden and now she regularly gets visits to the bird table from the babies :)


May 22nd - I've had this book on my Amazon wishlist for ages. It's been in the charity shop loads of times but I decided I didn't need any more books so I didn't buy it. I then saw a friend on Facebook saying she was reading it for the second time and described it as brilliant so I bought it for a pound and now I can't wait to get started on it!



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Friday, 22 May 2015

100 Things that make me happy

Shell Louise


  1. Ant
  2. Aiden
  3. Kaycee
  4. Ella
  5. Family
  6. Ice cream!
  7. Books
  8. Lazy days
  9. Watching a movie with Ant
  10. Playing Electronic Banking Monopoly with Kaycee
  11. Chocolate
  12. Baileys
  13. Hugs from Aiden.
  14. A snowball drink made by the SWH (super wonderful husband)
  15. Christmas
  16. Fairy lights
  17. Being wrapped up warm on a cold winters day
  18. Autumn leaves
  19. Orchids
  20. Morning cuddles from Ella
  21. Biscoff! OMG it's so gorgeous!
  22. Our large garden and the plans we have for it
  23. Our new house - I love living here. I didn't realise how on edge I was at the other house, always checking to see if the kids from the area were in the garden trashing it or just causing a nuisance of some sort. I'm so relaxed here :)
  24. Frog spawn
  25. Tadpoles - I can't wait to get my garden pond done for the frogs. I used to love going to the stream and finding tadpoles when I was younger.
  26. Flowers growing in the garden
  27. Our apple tree
  28. Weekend lie ins
  29. Easter holidays
  30. Netflix!
  31. Losing weight
  32. Flowers in my home
  33. Helping at the charity shop
  34. Getting voted as our group's slimmer of the year at slimming world
  35. Setting up an Easter egg hunt for girls
  36. Shopping with Ant
  37. Being spoilt on my birthday
  38. Being spoilt on Mother's day
  39. Being spoilt on Christmas day :)
  40. Going on holiday as  a family
  41. Going on holiday with Ant, just the two of us
  42. Getting greatest loser at my slimming world group
  43. Starbucks caramel frappuccino
  44. In fact, everything Starbucks! I really want to try the ham and cheese croissant :)
  45. Having a proper greenhouse
  46. Summer holidays - I should really just say school holidays because I love being able to turn the alarm off!
  47. My flower clock that Kaycee made me for mother's day
  48. The little owl that Ella got off a Christmas cracker and stuck to the tv. It's still there now and I'm leaving it there because it makes me smile :)
  49. Buying books, even if I've got too many to ever have time to read them all!
  50. Watching tv in the evening with the hubby
  51. Summer evenings, sitting outside 
  52. Summer barbecues
  53. Celebrating 10 years of marriage with my super wonderful husband
  54. Getting past the half way mark on this list!
  55. Getting a takeaway as a treat for the kids
  56. Planning for Christmas
  57. The smell of the Christmas decorations when you get them out of the loft
  58. Tv boxsets
  59. My slimming world group
  60. Winning our bonus ball lottery at slimming world
  61. Dominoes pizza
  62. Baking with the girls
  63. Having days out with the family
  64. Going to bed at the same time as Ant
  65. Seeing Ella get so excited at the new planetarium we received
  66. Helping Kaycee learn how to use the sewing machine
  67. Surprising the girls with a trip to the cinema
  68. Nanny's dog Chi-Chi getting so excited to see me when we visit
  69. Watching the shows the girls put on for us
  70. Feeling lucky that I've been blessed with a son who doesn't live up to the usual teenage stereotype of being cheeky, causing trouble and everything else teenagers are known for!
  71. Working from home so I'm always here for the children after school
  72. Diet Vimto......it's so yummy!
  73. Surprise flowers from Ant for no reason
  74. Nipping to the toilet in the morning and going back into my room to find Ella or Kaycee has made the bed for me :)
  75. Going to the Kinema in the Woods with Kaycee and Ella
  76. Going to the beach
  77. Going to the Wetherby Whaler
  78. A nice hot bath but no bubbles because they annoy me!
  79. Comfy pyjamas
  80. Spa evenings run by Kaycee and Ella at bedtime :)
  81. My new wildlife pond, waterfall and stream made by the super wonderful husband
  82. Having the big dining table back in use after it being in the garage since we moved here over a year ago
  83. Being able to take part in a photography course, thanks to Joe lending me his camera
  84. Seeing the summer bulbs we planted on a freezing cold February morning, starting to grow
  85. Clearing out the shed and throwing away A LOT of stuff!
  86. Sweet omelettes with banana, coconut greek yogurt and squirty cream!
  87. Going to Nanny's for a coffee and a chat
  88. Hugs from the nieces and nephews when they've not seen me for months
  89. Spending time with my best friend, Jo. It doesn't happen often enough.
  90. Ant watching scary things with me even though he doesn't want to, just so I don't have to go to bed on my own because I get too scared!
  91. Picking flowers from the garden to bring inside. I hope to have lots more planted for next year.
  92. The excitement from the girls when I showed them the pool we're going to be getting this year
  93. Bank holiday weekends
  94. Buying plants
  95. Having Nanny over for dinner
  96. Getting rid of the old carpet and putting down laminate flooring (which isn't down yet but hopefully won't be long!)
  97. Pinning ideas on Pinterest for things I want to do in the house and garden
  98. Listening to the Nashville cd and singing loud!
  99. Singing Bob Marley songs with Ella :)
  100. The times when everyone is doing their own thing, like Kaycee playing on the tablet, Ella watching Horrible History on Netflix, Aiden on his laptop and Ant's playing with a new gadget like his in car recorder and it suddenly hits me that I'm really really happy and totally content with my life :oD
    I love them all so much it's hard to put into words.



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Thursday, 21 May 2015

How does your garden grow?

Shell Louise

It's been a while since I wrote about the garden because frankly, it's a mess and needs a huge amount of work doing on it.
I kept putting it off but over the last few weeks we've made a start and things are finally getting the way we want them.

The biggest project by far is the wildlife pond, waterfall and stream that the super wonderful husband is in the process of creating.



We're waiting for some pond plants to be delivered that we ordered from Ebay and Ant's nearly got everything sorted on the waterfall (we're having a few setbacks due to leaks but he's getting there!) and stream so hopefully we'll be getting some wildlife in there soon!

The earlier plans I had for the garden have been totally changed! Where the pond was going to go at the top of the garden, we're now designating that area for the 10ft round paddling pool we're going to buy this year. I'm sick of buying blow up ones that get popped in the first week so we're going to spend a bit more money and get a stronger one.

The pond is now next to the patio so that I can sit by the side of it and watch the wildlife. I've already been out there just listening to the water when the waterfall has been on and I absolutely love it. It's going to look wonderful when it's all planted up.

As to the rest of the garden, Ant wants to build a hobbit house for the kids, we're still planning on covering the patio with a wooden veranda and I'm hoping to be able to afford some comfortable patio furniture at some point this year :)

I've got a border to dig over, weed and scatter some seeds as well as lots of pots to empty and plant up with new flowers.

It's a busy time but I love it!

We've got far too many of these.....



that, as you can see, Ella loves, and the forget me nots have been looking lovely.


After seeing how they've taken over my mother in law's garden, I'm happy I put mine in pots! She's never had as many as she's had this year. It does look gorgeous, the sea of blue, but we've had to pull lots of them up before they start to seed again.

Talking of seeds, we've got too many of these as well


which look really lovely but cause so much hard work!

Finally, the apple tree has had hardly any blossom this year and I fear we won't be getting half as a good crop out of it as we did last year



It's nice to be posting about the garden again and I hope to be joining in with HDYGG more often now the house is just about done :)

How Does Your Garden Grow? Mammasaurus


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Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Otherwordlz - Hay on Wye

Shell Louise

I'm bringing a belated Hay on Wye post today. I totally forgot to post my photos from one of the best shops I found at Hay on Wye, Otherworldz.

Everything it sells, I want!

The people who worked there were really nice; very friendly and made us feel most welcome.
If I'd have found the shop at the start of the holiday instead of the end, when I'd nearly spent up, I would have bought lots more things!

My little cat ring holder is in the kitchen window, looking after my rings as we speak!


Odd sock fan? Pick your own pair :)


The next time we visit we'll be leaving with some of these mushrooms because I realllly want them next to my pond!



Oops apologies for the blurry photo....all the sparkly, glittery things must have dazzled me!




You can find Otherworldz on Facebook and on Twitter :)

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Sunday, 17 May 2015

Project 365 - Week 4

Shell Louise

May 9th - This is what we made from the rhubarb we picked in the garden the other day. It was ok but it seemed very bitter compared to last year's crop. I wondered whether it was because last year's was forced by placing a bucket over it (done by the previous owner, I had no idea what was under there!).


May 10th - I'm going for another loss this week after my 3lb loss at Slimming World last week so I'm on lots of speed veg in the chili and speed fruits like melon :)


May 11th - These little blighters are ruining my lilies.


May 12th - Ella loves snails!


May 13th - Kaycee has her first Panini sticker album. I watched as she put her stickers in and totally remembered the frustration of not getting the sticker exactly right!


May 14th - Ella wanted a different hairstyle today (excuse the mess, we're in the process of doing a big sort out and move round).


May 15th - Another different hairstyle for Ella. Today she wanted a fishtail braid :)



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Looking to the future

Shell Louise



A general election always gets me thinking about the future. No matter who gets in, things are often uncertain for a while and it seems all everyone can talk about, depending on your political viewpoint, is the 'good' or 'bad' things that are 'certain' to happen because of the government.

I prefer to take on the, 'we'll cross that bridge when we come to it' stance and try not to worry about the turn the country is going to take, after all, they do say worrying causes wrinkles and no one wants those!

When I look to the future, I prefer to focus on things like the children. I wonder what they're going to choose to do with their lives and I wish I had a crystal ball or a pack of tarot cards (and the knowledge of how to use them!) so I can find out today! I'm so eager to see the kind of adults they're going to become, the jobs they're going to choose and whether they're going to have 1 or more, or no children!
Of course, if you really can't wait to see what the future holds, there are people you can talk to to try and help you get a glimpse into your future. TheCircle offers psychic phone readings, tarot card readings and astrology, among others.

Ant and I sometimes speculate as to the careers the kids are going to pick. We reckon Kaycee is either going to be a teacher or the boss of a large company because she lives to organise others and Ella is going to be something that doesn't take much concentration because she has none!

Aiden's not far off being an adult (how did that happen so fast?!) and he's considering a career in computers. He's not sure exactly what yet but our predictions about his future are slowly coming true! He's been using the computer with ease since he was 2 so it was pretty easy to predict a career in computers for him!

No matter what path they each take, it's wonderful seeing them grow, seeing the choices they'll make and the lives they build :)





Please note: this post is in collaboration with TheCircle.


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Saturday, 16 May 2015

Why are dressing up costumes classed as toys, not clothes?

Shell Louise




After seeing the heart wrenching interview given by Claudia Winkleman on Watchdog about her daughter's Halloween costume going up in flames, I shall be throwing away all of Kaycee and Ella's costumes today.

I'm so angry that these costumes, of which we've had loads over the years, are classed as toys and not clothing.
How can this be? As Claudia said, you can't drop the costume and remove yourself from the danger like you can with a toy.
These costumes should be subjected to the same tests as children's nightwear.

It makes me feel sick to the stomach to see these photos of my girls dressed in something that I bought for them, knowing now how fast their lives, and ours, could have been changed if they'd got too close to the candles in our pumpkins.

I never once looked at these costumes and thought about the fire hazard of all those different layers of synthetic materials.
I assumed they were safe because they were sold everywhere.

It was suggested on Watchdog that you could change the candles to battery powered ones which is a great idea and one I'll be adopting, if only to make sure I'm never the cause of any child getting hurt like that but it doesn't stop the problem with the costumes.
We don't only buy these things for Halloween, we've had numerous princess dresses for parties as well and you can't use battery powered candles on the birthday cake because the highlight of the birthday cake for the birthday child is blowing out the candles.

I'll be supporting Watchdog's campaign and I hope anyone reading this will pass it on to their friends and family so they can see how important it is for our children's safety to change the regulations surrounding these clothes, that are certainly not toys.



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