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September 2011

Thanks Parentdish & Snazaroo :)

The postman delivered some wonderful Snazaroo face paints yesterday, that I won when I entered a competition on Parentdish, and the girls love them 🙂
We received some fabulous sets and they’re going to last us forever!

The girl’s didn’t get home from Granddad’s until nearly 8pm last night which is past their bedtime but it didn’t stop them asking if I could paint their faces there and then!

We decided to do it tonight after school and I can see many a face painting being done for the next few weeks, until the novelty wears off!

KayCee wanted a butterfly


and Ella wanted to be a disco diva!



Luckily, there was no time left for the girls to do my face as they had to get ready to go to Aiden’s dad’s *phew!*.

It was a lovely surprise to win so again I thank Parentdish and Snazaroo for making two little girls very happy 🙂

Dear So & So The feeling sorry for myself edition

Dear Chest infection,
Yours, a very poorly Shell

Dear Aching bones,
again, why?
I could probably cope with the chest infection on its own, even though breathing is a bit painful. I can’t, however, get anything done around the house when you won’t even allow my legs to support me properly.
My house is a mess. The dishwasher needs filling, the 60 friggin’ plants I stupidly ordered on a whim need planting, the laundry needs washing and folding and putting away and the floors need cleaning.
My head is too heavy for my neck and the dvd has finished and I don’t have the energy to get up and put the next one in. Typing is taking a lot of energy I fear I won’t be able to carry on for much longer.
Yours, a very pee’d off, Shell

Dear Box containing new greenhouse,
why did you find it necessary to stick out just in the place where my foot wanted to go, in the middle of the night, in the dark?
Much cursing and some blood loss later, I’m left with a swollen painful toe and I must admit to being ever so slightly fed of everything at the moment.
Yours, a tearful, Shell :'(

Dear Readers,
it’s Dear So & So day again so click the pic to find more, hopefully upbeat and funny entries!

Dear So and So...

Nail Girls

Conversation between Mummy, 6 year old KayCee and 4 year old Ella…..
Ella: Please Mummy, can I paint your tails *Ella speak for toe nails*
Mummy: Oh go on then.
Ella: Yay, thanks Mum *goes off to get polish*
KayCee: Awww I want to paint your nails as well. Can I paint your finger ones?
Ella: Awww I want to paint your finger ones. I know KayCee, you paint that one *points to the left* and I’ll paint this one *holds right hand*.
KayCee: No, you’re doing her toe nails.
Ella: Aww but I want to do her fingers as well.
KayCee: No, that won’t be fair on me.
Ella: I know KayCee, you do that one and that one *points to left hand and foot* and I’ll do these. That’ll be sharing won’t it Mummy?
Mummy: *smiles* yeah Ella, that’s sharing.
KayCee: Okay.

Nails by KayCee


Nails by Ella

Ella: When me and KayCee grow up, we can be nail girls can’t we Mum?
Mummy: Yeah that’d be fun wouldn’t it Ella?
Ella: Yeah *grins* that’s what we’ll we do, we’re gonna be nail girls 🙂

Joint business venture perhaps?

We’ll have to wait and see! 🙂

The Gallery – Home

Home for me is where my family is

but my most favourite place to be when I’m home is in our garden, sitting on the love seat, relaxing next to our waterfall rockery.
If you’re a regular visitor to my blog, one who isn’t my husband that is!, you’ll probably be totally fed up of seeing pictures of the rockery by now but it’s the place that I love the most about our home so I have to show it again!

Click the button to go and see lots more wonderful photos 🙂

My Super Wonderful Husband :o)

My wonderful husband has been promoted; he’s now my super wonderful husband after he did something very special for me tonight. I had to share it with everyone even though I’m supposed to be in bed right now!

If you’ve been reading my posts about the garden, you know how much work we’ve done on it this year.
It really has taken nearly all year to get to the stage it’s at and we’re finally beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Ant got the new lawn area levelled and seeded today so by next spring we should have lots of lovely grass 🙂
We were going to buy turf because it’s quicker I have no patience but we decided that as I’d already paid for the grass seed, it was silly spending money on turf just because I wanted an instant lawn and also, being a gardener now means I have to learn to be patient!

Anyway, back to the point….my most favourite part of the garden is our rockery waterfall and love seat made by my super wonderful husband.
I could sit on that seat with cushions! for hours listening to the water trickling and watching the birds come for a bath and a drink. It’s looking really lovely now the plants are starting to spread and the garden ornaments have been dotted around.


The kids and I were out in the garden earlier getting the play area cleared so Ant can get it sorted and get the new bark down.
He decided to get as much done in the garden tonight as the light would allow so we left him to it and went upstairs to start the bedtime routine.

After an hour or so, I went to go downstairs to find Ant waiting for me at the bottom. He said I had to go outside right now so I got my shoes on and followed him out. I couldn’t think what he wanted to show me because by this time it was really dark!

I stepped out of the door and from the corner of my eyes saw lots of lights in the direction of the rockery.
We’d been discussing lighting earlier and we’ve agreed that the area needs lights to add the finishing touch. I ordered some but had to send them back because they were faulty so we’re on the lookout for some more.

While I’d been getting the kids in bed, Ant had been placing tea lights all over the rockery and they looked absolutely beautiful. He said he knew how much I loved that part of the garden and he wanted to do something special for me :o)
I love this man so much. I don’t know how I got to be so lucky to have someone who makes me feel so special and loved. I truly am blessed.
Of course, I had to take pictures, and video then more pictures! I want to remember this night. It was only half an hour or so but it was so romantic and special.




Thank you my darling ♥ You made my day and I love you ZILLIONS xxx ♥

89 Days to Christmas

It’s time to start looking for stocking fillers now while they’re still relatively cheap.
I’ve ordered some Lindt chocolate reindeers today from Tesco as part of my grocery delivery because they’re on offer for 50p each.
Tesco have quite a few Christmas chocolates and goodies on offer already so it’s worth stocking up and saving money 🙂


90 Days to Christmas

I’ve decided to make some of my Christmas gifts so today’s tip is for me.
I need to decide on the final gift ideas and work towards purchasing all the parts needed.
I’ve been scouring the web and nothing has jumped out at me yet so if you know of some great craft sites, please feel free to share!

Do you make your own gifts to give out at Christmas? Do you find it more satisfying knowing you’ve taken time and effort over your gifts rather than picking something from a shop just so you have something to give?

I’ve always liked the idea of giving homemade gifts but every time we’ve tried, they’ve never looked as nice as they do in the photos on the site!
Hopefully, this year, we’ll find something that looks stunning, doesn’t cost the earth and is fun to make!

Britmums prompt of the week – Week 3

I tried to think of the best blogging advice I’ve received and found that I couldn’t think of any. That’s not to say I haven’t received any, just that I can’t recall it if I have.
I have a truly terrible memory but even so, if I’d received some great advice about my blog that made me go….’oooh that was great advice’, you’d think I’d remember, right?

It is quite possible that I haven’t had any advice because I can’t remember a time when I would have asked for it. I’m a bit shy and coming into the new world of mummy blogging and places like twitter can be very daunting for someone like me. It seems like everyone knows everyone else but unlike places like the school playground at pick up and drop off times, mummy bloggers seem to make more of an effort to draw you in and include you 🙂

To be honest, I’m struggling with social media as a whole.
I feel a bit rude if I jump in on someones conversation on twitter because I don’t know them yet and I’m still getting used to it, but on the odd occasion I’ve made the leap and offered an opinion or simply a comment, I’ve never been made to feel like I’m being rude and it’s starting to filter through into my brain that this seems to be what twitter is all about!
Being shy and quiet on twitter is a bit rubbish really! There’s no point in watching everyone else talk and not getting involved yourself. So I’m trying to be more active and I’m getting braver all the time!

I suppose, if I find myself needing advice about any aspect of my blog, I’ll feel a bit more comfortable asking for it now I’m starting to recognise who’s who in the blogging world and my first port of call would be twitter!

But wait….when I saw the prompt, ‘The best blogging advice I’ve ever recieved is_______’, I took it to mean advice for me, personally.
Maybe, I thought, I should think about blogs that have given advice freely and that has helped me with my own blog.
I immediately thought of this post over at Shabbyblogs Blog. It made me rethink the use of photos and the kind of posts about my children that I write on my blog.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still be posting pics of them all because I’m a proud mum and love to show them off, but I’ll certainly think more about things you’d normally forget, like being able to tell where we live from the photos or posting a photo that could embarrass one or all of them in the future.

The post opened my eyes and made me think; up until now, I’d pictured nice people, most likely parents like me, reading my blog. I never thought about the unsavoury side of it so yes, it’s definately worth remembering that not everyone viewing your blog is guaranteed to be nice.

I’m off to make dinner then I’ll be back to see if I have anything to write using the other prompt of the week over at Britmums 🙂

Writing Workshop – Time

In the dim light of the bedside lamp, I notice the red numbers of the clock, shining brightly. Every so often, I feel compelled to glance over at it; it’s almost like it has some invisible power over me to make me see what it has to say when it wants me to.
It’s telling me, no, urging me to put the book down and go to sleep. Every time I check it, the numbers have moved steadily on, taking me further into the night until finally, I can ignore them no more.
They’ve done their job and they seem to shine a little brighter. It’s like they know they fought a hard battle but they finally won.

Sleep must come. I like sleep; in fact I adore it. So, why do I fight it every night?
A yawn, big enough to make my eyes water, is the final bit of effort my head has to do for the night. I put down my book, turn off the lamp and let the darkness envelop me.
I sigh with contentment as my whole body relaxes and my eyes close. I’m no longer fighting it. I want sleep to come and help me drift away into a land where normal, everyday happenings are turned upside down and inside out, but, somehow, remain normal.
Dreams are wonderful things and I look forward to new ones every night.

A final glance at the glowing red numbers, (this will be the time my mind registers as the time I went to sleep, no matter how long it takes me to actually fall asleep, unless of course, I have to look at the clock again before sleep claims me) as I give in to the night.
Thoughts of the day ahead start to creep into my mind. Lists are being made of things that need doing to ensure that every family member will be ready to face the day ahead.
Family faces change to images of the garden that float across my vision. It’s been a major renovation project since the start of the year and sometimes, my thoughts are dominated by it. It’s not surprising when there’s so much to do. More lists, more thoughts, no sleep.

I need to slow my mind down. It needs to relax just as much as my body does; it doesn’t listen. The first opportunity it gets to rest, it shifts into gear and starts working overtime.
I try to clear the thoughts away. I breathe deeply and think about a nice relaxing place I’d like to be.
There’s a small water way, it’s pretty and I like how the water trickles over the smooth stones on the stream bed. I sit on the soft, mossy grass and let my fingers touch the water gently.
It’s cold but not uncomfortably so. The sunlight glints through the trees and sparkles on the water’s surface.
I breathe deeply and the crisp fresh air fills my lungs and makes me feel alive.
Hmmm, this isn’t really helping. Now I want to be out in the sun, letting water run through my fingers.

I open my eyes and look at the clock. My mind refuses to register that an hour has passed since I last looked. Surely the clock is wrong? Is it playing with me, toying with my tired emotions? I only closed my eyes a moment ago. I tried my best to do as I was told and go to sleep but sleep failed me and now it seems the clock is punishing me.
If it is indeed telling the truth, I’m going to be so tired tomorrow I won’t be able to function properly.
The minute changes as I watch, taking me ever closer to morning; if I were a child, I’d stick my tongue out at it because it’s annoying me now. There was absolutely no need to torment on me on purpose.

I close my eyes again. I relax and let sleep know that it’s OK; I’m really not fighting any more and I’m sorry for not listening earlier. I know you were trying to tell me that you were more important than what happened to the heroine of my story but sometimes the heroine just won’t let go of my mind. She grabs on with both hands and says, “just one more page, go on, you know you want to”.

It comes without me knowing. It takes me under to that special land of adventure. A million and one things can happen and if I’m lucky, they will all be nice things. If I’m not so lucky I may travel down the road that leads to the scary place. The worst thing is, it’s not my choice. I have to go with the flow and take whatever this land wants to throw at me.
Tonight, it’s all good. Family members drop by and stay for a coffee. Their mug isn’t even half empty when they’ve suddenly changed to someone else, but it’s OK because I won’t even notice till I wake and try to tell my other half about my dream. It’s too hard to explain because none of it makes sense, but while I’m there, it’s not an issue.
After spending hours with family and friends, doing weird and wonderful things, my mind starts to remind me that soon, the morning will be here and that clock with the pretty red lights will be the enemy. It’ll start shouting at me with a noise so horrible it can even make me shudder when I hear it on a movie in the middle of the day!
I start to gear myself up while all the time wishing I’d gone to sleep earlier because I just haven’t had enough time in the land of dreams.
Somehow, that darn clock makes me force open a sleep filled eye so I can see how much longer I’ve got before the ‘beepbeepbeepbeepbeep’ drags me out of that special land and into the cold light of an autumn morning.
It can’t be. How does this happen? How can it only take 10 minutes for all those family and friends to drop by, spend hours with me on my various adventures, drift off home because I’ve told them I have to leave soon when really, according to the lovely clock, I’ve got ages before it shrieks at me.
It’s one of life’s mysteries but one that makes me extremely happy! I quickly get a lift back to my special place and enjoy the rest of my time there.

I hate that shriek. I quickly press the snooze button and this time sleeps takes me right back under. For the next 9 minutes I’m away in the special land, where time messes with your head. Where it can feel like 1 minute or 100 minutes since you closed your eyes and the only way to be sure is to put your trust in the glowing red lights of the clock.

It shrieks at me again. It’s 6.30am and the reason it’s 6.30am and not 6.29am is because I don’t let that clock mess with me in a morning. I work in full tens when it comes to getting up and there’s no way I’m setting my alarm for 6.20am and letting that clock make me drag myself out of bed before 6.30am. Even if it is just one minute.

I’m tired, so tired in fact and I vow that tonight will be different. I’ll go to bed earlier and read less. I’ll be strong with the heroine and tell her, “no lady, I’m not giving in tonight. You can tell me all about it another time”.
I’ll embrace sleep and let it carry me away as soon as it wants.
Maybe if I do, time will not mess with my head. It will let me sleep until morning and when I wake my mind will know that hours, not minutes have passed and I’ll feel refreshed and ready to face the day.

Yeah right!

This was a great challenge and I really enjoyed it.
Click the button to check out more  Writing Workshop participants 🙂

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