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December 2017

Completed My Goodreads Reading Challenge 2017

Goodreads Reading Challenge 2017 – I completed my first Goodreads reading challenge in 2016 and I enjoyed it so much I decided to do it again in 2017.

Looking back at my 2016 post, I said I was going to challenge myself to read 45 books in a year. When I signed up to the challenge, I decided to set my number at 52 which is 1 book a week.
I started off strong and got ahead which really helped when it came to the busy summer months.

I don’t know if I’m going to manage 52 books again next year but I’m going to give it a go 🙂

Goodreads Reading Challenge 2017

Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017 Goodreads reading challenge 2017

Aiden’s New Christmas Stocking

In 2015 I made KayCee and Ella a new Christmas stocking each. I’d made Aiden a stocking when he was a baby but it was a very simple Winnie The Pooh one. The ones I made for KayCee and Ella were very intricate and took a lot of time.

All three of them also have a stocking each that my mum made them but Aiden’s is kept at his dad’s house. I wanted to be able to put matching stockings on the fireplace and Aiden’s Winnie The Pooh one doesn’t match so I made him a new stocking 🙂

New Christmas Stocking

Aiden's new Christmas stocking new Christmas stocking

20 Christmas Photos We’ve Taken This Year

Christmas Photos I take lots of Christmas photos but this year I wanted to make sure I capture all those special moments. The girls are growing up far too fast and Christmas is changing now we don’t have any little ones here. In fact,  for the […]

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Our Boxing Day 2017 Photos

Boxing Day 2017 – Our regular trip to Derbyshire on Boxing Day started off with a visit to B&M to check out the Boxing Day sale!
I bought some candle decorations and some sparkly gold table mats for Christmas next year. I would have probably bought more if the reduced prices were on the items. Lots of things were on the clearance shelves but I didn’t know how much they’d been reduced by so I didn’t bother with anything else.

The drive to Belper was a nice one, there weren’t many cars on the roads and we made good time.

I got to see most of my family but we weren’t able to stay for too long because we wanted to get back before it got dark. We got some lovely photos of my dad with various grandchildren!

Boxing Day 2017

Boxing Day 2017
Dad, Nathan and Alyssa
Boxing Day 2017
Alyssa and Kaycee
Boxing Day 2017
Kaycee and Logan
Boxing Day 2017
Kieron and Kaycee
Boxing Day 2017
Mason and Dad
Boxing Day 2017
Dad and Kaycee
Boxing Day 2017
Logan and Dad
Boxing Day 2017
Left to right – Gemma (sister in law), my brother James and my brother, John, who is married to Gemma

Boxing Day 2017

 

Previous Boxing Day photos

2011
2013
2014
2015

Our Christmas Day 2017 Photos

Christmas Day 2017 – For the first time since having children, I was able to sleep in until 7 am on Christmas day! Ella and KayCee said they were going to get up at 4.30 am because that’s what time they always woke on Christmas day.

Ella actually woke at midnight to go to the toilet, just as we were going to bed. She noticed the stockings were gone and thought Santa had taken them but I told her I’d borrowed them to take photos. I’ve made Aiden a new stocking this year and had forgotten to photograph it.

Ant came to bed and around 20 minutes later we heard Ella creeping to her door and taking the filled stockings to her room!
She woke KayCee who told her it was too early to open the presents. I think KayCee said Ella eventually opened them around 2.30 am then fell back to sleep.
I got up just after 7 and the girls were still in bed!

It didn’t take them long to wake up and remember it was Christmas 🙂
They woke Aiden, who unfortunately was still ill (he’d been at his dad’s until Christmas Eve and came home with a cold) but he put a brave face on and enjoyed opening his presents.

We had a lovely morning together then Jerome (Ant’s youngest son) and Kellyann (his daughter) came to visit. We don’t see Jerome much through the year so it was really nice to see him.

Kellyann bought her gifts with her and as usual, she’d totally spoilt them! She’d filled a unicorn box with everything unicorn for Ella, including a gymnast leotard that had a unicorn on and her name. I’ve never seen her so excited 🙂

Granddad and Jonathan came for dinner then stayed to play Kaycee’s new Monopoly Jackpot game.

A wonderful day was had by all 🙂

Christmas Day 2017 Photos

Christmas Day 2017

Christmas Day 2017

Christmas Day 2017

Christmas Day 2017

Aiden’s presents

Aiden presents Christmas Day 2017

KayCee’s presents

Kaycee's presents

Ella’s presents

Ella's Christmas presents

Ant’s presents

Ant's Christmas presents

Ant's Christmas presents

Ant's Christmas presents

My presents

my presents

my presents

my presents

my presents

my presents

my presents

my presents

 

Christmas Dinner and Monopoly

Anthony the Christmas chef

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner

Jonathan

Anthony

Playing Monopoly jackpot

playing Disney Monopoly

Previous Christmases

2016
2015

2014
2013

Our Christmas Eve 2017 Photos

We had a busy but fun Christmas Eve 2017. As usual, we had a buffet tea and had an open house so family and friends could join us.

We don’t have much space in the house so Ant lit the log burner in the grotto (his name for the new covered BBQarea he built earlier this year) and he spent a lovely evening out there with his dad and some of his children 😊

I didn’t go out because it was too cold for me and I didn’t like the smell of the smoke!

When everyone had gone we opened our Christmas Eve boxes and everyone put on their new pyjamas. Even I got some new Christmas PJs this year, thanks to KayCee getting Ant to buy me some!

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

 

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

Christmas Eve 2017

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas Eve 🙂

Merry Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas 2017

O Holy Night

O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till He appear’d and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.
Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here come the wise men from the Orient land.
The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger;
In all our trials born to be our friend.
He knows our need, to our weaknesses no stranger,
Behold your King! Before Him lowly bend!
Behold your King, Before Him lowly bend!
Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.
Christ is the Lord! O praise His Name forever,
His power and glory evermore proclaim.
His power and glory evermore proclaim.

Merry Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas 2016

Low Syn Homemade Baileys – Slimming World Buffet

Christmas would not be Christmas without my favourite tipple. The trouble is, Baileys is really high in Slimming World syns. For a measly 25ml, it comes in at 4 syns. There’s no way I can have just 25ml so I was delighted when I found […]

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Tips to Make Your Kitchen Look Larger

Whether you’ve moved into a new property that needs a little updating or just noticed that your current kitchen needs a little TLC, redecorating can throw up all kinds of design questions. Unless you’re among the lucky minority to have a large kitchen, how exactly can you make your kitchen look and feel bigger than it really is?

make your kitchen look larger

Using little visual tricks and colour psychology will help to give your kitchen a new lease of life that will both modernise and help the room to feel more spacious. Since your kitchen needs to be easy to clean, your main focus should be on the tiles. The tiles can make or break the aesthetic of a room, so these should be your main focus when trying to make a room look bigger.

 

Colours

 

It’s no surprise to learn that darker colours aren’t going to help to make a room look larger. Instead, you want to stick to those neutral and paler shades. The lighter the tile, the more illusion of space you will create. However, don’t feel that you are limited to just white tiles, you can work with any kind of lighter colours, including pastels. The main reason for this is that lighter colours bounce light better than darker colours, eradicating those shadows that can shrink a room. If those natural colours aren’t your thing, grey is incredibly popular right now. A light or dove grey wall tile would work just as well but still gives you a sophisticated colour scheme to work with.

make your kithen look larger

Grout Lines

 

Oftentimes the grouting if overshadowed by the tile itself. We’re so focused on getting the perfect tile that we forget about how it will look with the grouting once properly installed. In smaller kitchens, you want to try and match the grout and tile colour together. If you have a white tile for example and use a black grout, this can make a wall or floor look a little more cluttered than it really is. This is an incredibly fashionable look right now, but only really works in rooms that have the space available. It’s important to be realistic with the room you have so not to ruin the design you’ve carefully planned. Matching your tile and grout colour makes a seamless look with a flawless finish that will help in opening up the room.

 

Finishes

 

When looking for tiles you might not consider the fact that the finish might have some impact on the way a room looks. The best finish you can choose when trying to make a smaller room look larger is a high gloss. The glossy finish bounces light beautifully and therefore helps to make the room feel more spacious. The high gloss finish also makes for easy cleaning with dust and dirt easily being swept away. If a high gloss seems too intimidating, look instead for a satin finish. These tiles have the perfect mix of gloss and matt to give you a tile that has a subtle shine.

make your kitchen look larger
Kitchen House Interior Floor Home Modern Room

Tiling a small kitchen doesn’t have to be difficult. Follow these simple suggestions when looking for your new tiles and you will have a kitchen that looks and feels larger in no time.

 

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