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Absolutely LOVE My New Studio!

I have a wonderful new studio where I can work on the blog, make brilliant(!) paper creations and photograph said creations without having to find somewhere with a nice background.

Since getting my Cricut earlier this year, I was slowly taking over the dining room table, bookcases, shelves and basically, that end of the room!
I bought an organiser trolley from Hobbycraft for my Cricut Maker as I got fed up with having to keep putting it away when dinner time came.

Hobbycraft rolling organiser

I also bought two other trolleys from Hobbycraft so I could organise my craft supplies a bit.
However, it got to the point where I really couldn’t fit anything else in the living room and the dining table was more of a craft table than somewhere to eat.

Ant’s Office

When we moved in here, Ant set up his office in the garage. We never planned to use the garage for the car and he needed all the space for all his computer ‘stuff’!

As time went on, the office got filled up with anything and everything and it was so cold in there during the Winter that it stopped being used.
The only time Ant had to go in there was to see to the server.

My New Studio

We decided to empty Ant’s office and turn it into an office/craft room for me. We’ve been trying to get it done all Summer but something always seemed to come up to stop us.
Finally, about 3 weeks ago, I decided to take the week off volunteering at the charity shop and use the time to get the office emptied.

Before Photos

Ant's office before I claimed it as my own!
ant's office before
Ant's office before the transformation
Ant's office before
Ant's office before

After Photos – My Lovely New Studio!

New studio
New studio - office desk and crafting desk

I haven’t got the monitor connected to anything yet. The plan is to set up a computer especially for use with the Cricut. At the moment I’m using a phone and whilst I can use it to make projects I’ve saved, I find it easier to create and make the projects on the laptop.

New studio - storage shelves

I love the A4 paper storage shelves. They were from Amazon and only cost about £12, I think. They’re very sturdy.

New studio - photo staging corner

This is my photo corner. I need to iron the background and sort out the one on the bench as it’s just loosely folded at the moment.

New studio - comfy chair and quilling storage

This is the old chair that I used when working in the living room. We got a new electric recliner and this one got put in the garage until we decided what to do with it.
Now it has a purpose again and I glad we found a use for it. I know it’s not the best looking chair but it’s comfy and that’s all that matters!

New studio - most important part - the coffee machine!

This is the most important corner because it houses my new coffee machine given to me by my lovely friend who does the weighing with me at Slimming World every week.

I love not having to go inside every time I need a coffee.

New studio - office desk
New studio - crafting corner - Cricut machine storage

This is my crafting desk. It is so wonderful to have everything to hand when I’m paper crafting.

New studio - crafting desk
New studio - office desk

Please excuse everything that is on the outside of the window; the covered bbq patio is out there and at the moment it is currently full to the brim with everything that came out of the garage!

I love it all so much, I’m even happier to be working from home now!

Back To School And College

Where the heck did those Summer holidays go?! I can’t quite believe it’s back to school already.
We didn’t do a Summer bucket list year due to both girls having plans with friends and family right through the Summer. We didn’t get a chance to go to the beach, to Daisy Made or on a family day out at all because they were too busy! And now it’s back to school and college and I’m a little bit sad.

Aiden started back at college today. He took his first train ride today to get to his new college and he’s also started a new part-time job. It’s totally a day of first for him!
He’s not sure what time he’s going to get home tonight as he’s working in a kitchen. I can’t wait to see how his first day has gone 🙂

I know I’ve said it before and every parent says it at some point, but I really can’t believe how fast time is going. KayCee’s started year 10 today and Ella went into year 8.

KayCee year 10 - back to school and college
Ella year 8 - back to school and college

Felin Fach – Our Best Ever Holiday

If you’ve read my blog before, you may have seen a post I did a few years ago about falling in love with Mundesley when we went to celebrate our anniversary.

Well, we now have a new favourite place – Felin Fach cottage in Wales.
We’ve stayed in a few cottages over the years and this is by far the best ever; the 6+ hours drive was totally worth it!

Felin Fach Cottage

The property had recently been sold to Lynsey and Andrew. We were only the second guests they’d had but we’d never had known if they hadn’t told us. They were excellent hosts who were there when needed but left us alone to enjoy the peace and tranquillity.

Andrew showed us into the cottage where he’d left a plate of homemade brownies, a bottle of milk and half a dozen eggs from one of the local farms.
We also found tea, coffee and sugar in the canisters which are always welcome when you first arrive somewhere like this because it means you don’t have to start unpacking straight away to find your supplies; you can relax with a cuppa after the long drive 🙂

Homemade brownies, milk and eggs at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales

Lovely Living Room

After giving us all the information we needed, Andrew left and we went to check out the rest of the cottage.
I was very pleased to see a wood-burning fire. I didn’t think we’d be able to make use of it seeing it as it was mid-August and to be fair, we didn’t really need the fire to warm the place as it was lovely and warm anyway, especially as there was under-floor heating, but we had a couple of rainy days and used the log fire because it made it feel all nice and cosy.

Log burning fireplace at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
Log burning fire

This sofa was very comfy and from here I had a lovely view of a robin that kept landing on the steps outside the patio doors.

Comfy sofa
patio doors
Patio doors leading to a barbeque area
Our little robin friend who kept coming for a visit
Our lovely little robin friend 🙂
Plenty of books and some card and quiz games at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
Lots of books, both fiction and non-fiction as well as cards and quiz games.
More books -always a welcome sight for me!
I spied more books on the ledge up the stairs.

The Bedroom

I have to admit, I never have much luck with mattresses because of my bad back and I still haven’t found one comfier than the one in Mudesley but this bed wasn’t too bad for me.

The bedding was so lovely. It was soft and snuggly and even Ant, who usually kicks duvets off because he gets too hot under them, found himself sleeping under it all night!

double bed with purpple and white bedding at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
dressing table

The bedroom is a good size with plenty of storage for clothes.

small window looking out over the front
comfy chairs in the bedroom
High ceiling with lovely lights
I LOVED this light fitting!

Ant loves bedrooms with balconies. Unfortunately, I don’t much care for them, especially ones where you can see through to the ground below so we didn’t end up using it!

balcony off the bedroom

The Bathroom

Ant enjoyed this lovely big bath. I wasn’t able to use it, sadly, because I was suffering from a bad knee and was worried I wouldn’t be able to get back out.

big white bath

It didn’t matter though because I loved this big shower! Towels and bedding were included in the price which is always good because they can be bulky to pack if you have to take your own.

large shower

I know it’s weird to take photos of a bottle of handsoap but this one smelt so good I wanted to see if I could get some when I got home!

method hand soap

27 Acres

The cottage is set in 27 acres and you’re free to go exploring. There’s a river that runs through which means there are little bridges dotted about.

I have to say, I’m so incredibly jealous of Lynsey and Andrew being able to live here all the time!
When I was younger we were always down at the brook, finding tadpoles and fishing for sticklebacks. I would have been in heaven as a child if I’d grown up here!

bridge over the river at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
gardens and fields to explore
another bridge over the river
This bridge is in front of the cottage, just over a small lawned area.
the river at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
shallow parts of the river
I so wanted to go for a paddle!
wild strawberry
Wild strawberries growing in the front garden
lilac coloured flower
pink flower at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
another kind flower!
shallow river

Seeing these hazelnuts on the ground took me back to when I used to go nutting with my dad. We’d collect hazelnuts and chestnuts. I loved it.

lilies growing in the front garden at Felin Fach cottage, Pumsaint, Wales
my favourite flowers

We definitely plan on going back to Felin Fach next year. We’ll be celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary in April and we had planned on going back to York Lakeside Lodges where we went for our honeymoon but we’ve decided we’re going to Felin Fach. I need to hurry and get it booked before someone else gets in before us!

Thank you, Lynsey and Andrew, for a totally wonderful, relaxing week and we’ll see you again soon!

Questions For KayCee At The End Of Year 9

I started asking Kaycee and Ella some questions at the end of the school year in 2012. I love being able to look back at the changes 
These are KayCee’s answers at the end of year 9.



KayCee hasn’t sailed through the year as she has done in previous years, she’s had a lot to deal with, but she’s come through it stronger and more confident.

I can’t believe she only has 2 more years left at secondary school (unless she decides to stay on for the sixth form, of course), she’s growing so fast and is turning into a wonderful young lady.

As always, we’re very proud of her. 🙂

I am really good atFood tech
I like to go to friend’s houses after school
My favourite thing to learn at school:Food tech
1 person who makes me laugh:Sophie and Maddison, I can’t pick just one!
One word that describes me:Unique
I am really happy when:When I’m with my mum
I am really sad when:When I fall out with friends
My favourite book: Love Aubrey
My favourite TV show:Jane The Virgin
My favourite vacation: Greece
I like school when:Everyone is friends and there’s no drama
I don’t like school when:I have geography
My favourite season: Summer
My favourite toy: I don’t play with toys anymore
My worst nightmare fearCotton wool/spiders/the mole on my neck
Things that make me mad: Ella
Favourite sport: Netball
I like my Dad becausehe’s funny and makes my lunch
I like my Mum because:she’s nice and supportive and we have good talks
I like my family because It’s big

We’re Creating A New Home Office

I’ve been quite happy having a little corner of the living room to use as my home office for the last couple of years. I have a shelf and a nest of tables to store bits and pieces on and a glass laptop table that’s easily moveable when needed.
This space has worked well as a home office and I didn’t need any more space until I got sent a Cricut Maker machine a few months ago. I was expecting to use it for making a few crafts like birthday cards etc but once I started using it, I found I had a new passion!

home office

Home Office/Craft Room

Working with paper and card came really easily to me and I’m now starting to write tutorials to help others learn how to use the Cricut Maker.
The only problem is that now I keep taking over the dining table and I’m filling every available space with cardstock, craft glue, embellishments and finished projects.
There isn’t enough room to carry on using the living room as an office/craft room any more so we needed a solution to the problem.

She Shed

My first plan was to buy a shed and use it for my office/craft room.

notebooks and a pen

Ant had a better (and cheaper!) idea.
He has about 1/3 of the garage for his office but he’s hardly used it since last Summer. He felt guilty about using a heater in there when it got cold over Winter and has taken over one end of the dining room table as a temporary office.

The garage is also full of his tools and boxes and boxes of computer ‘stuff’ that we don’t need anymore.

We decided we’d have a massive sort out and get rid of everything in there that we don’t need then split the space into three sections; a small workshop where Ant can keep his tools, an office for him and an office/craft room for me.

We’re going to have to find a solution for the heat problem over Winter but we’ve got a while to go before we need to worry about it.


I have to admit to never going in the garage unless I absolutely had to and seeing as I have a husband and three children living here, I never had to, I just sent one of them in!
When I first looked at the amount of stuff we had in there, which didn’t include Ant’s tools as he’d already started sorting the garage a few weeks before, I just stood there staring, not knowing where to begin!

The good thing about the garage being full of stuff is, it all had to be stored on shelves and now we’re getting rid of it, we have loads of empty shelves.

I totally forgot to take a Before photo which you’d have thought I’d do as second nature seeing as I’ve been blogging for so long!
I will be taking some photos during the clear out and I’ll share them in a future post showing off the results of our hard work.

Getting There

We’re slowly getting through the mountain of stuff and I’m hoping to be moved in by the start of August at the latest.
Now I can see the space I’m going to have, I’ve started planning the layout and looking for furniture. 

I’m going to need a large desk to do my crafting, a smaller one for blogging and a new chair because the dining table chair I’m using at the moment is not at all comfortable when using for long periods of time!

You can imagine my excitement, then, when I came across a reclining office chair with massage function at LionsHome. Yes, I did say massage function!
I didn’t even know you could get a massage function on office chairs and now I really really want one!

home office room renovatons

I love shopping, for anything really, but especially when I’m doing a room makeover and while looking for an office chair, I also found some lovely desks at LionsHome that are perfect for my needs.

I saw an L-shaped desk that also has lots of shelves attached. I’d already started planning where to put everything before I’d even thought about ordering it!

I’ll Be Back – Hopefully Soon!

I really can’t wait to get the space emptied and get all my furniture in there and start properly organising all my stuff!

I’m going to paint the walls white to brighten it up in there and I think I’m going to get some lino for the floor. It has carpet tiles down but with the amount of tiny paper bits that come off the Cricut mats, carpet isn’t a very good option!

I’ll be back as soon as possible with the During and After photos of my new office/craft room 🙂

This is a collaborative post

What A Week – Trip To A&E

This has been a week I won’t forget in a hurry. It’s the week where I felt the most agonising pain I’ve ever felt in my life.
I don’t think it was the most fearful I’ve ever felt, however, that award goes to the time I had a pulmonary embolism and had to spend 10 days in the hospital.
I’ll admit, I truly did think I was going to die that time, but a good thing came from it; I’ve not had a cigarette since the day I was rushed in :o)

This time my trip to A&E was on Monday night, a night which we expected to be quite quiet at A&E. Turns out Monday nights are usually the busiest time for them, which of course was just my luck!

teddy with a plaster on - what a week - trip to A&E


Advice from 111

It was around 6.30 pm, just after I’d finished dinner when I started to get a pain in the area of my hernia. I’d had pain in the area a few times and I usually just have to lie down and it goes away.

I had my feet up and was half lying on the sofa, but the pain got worse, not better, so I decided to go and lie on the bed so I could lie flat.
After about 20 minutes, the pain had started to get really bad, not better. I made way downstairs to tell Ant that I thought we should go to the hospital because I feared I had a strangulated hernia, (I’d been scaring myself by Googling the symptoms!).

Ant phoned 111 and to cut the story short, they advised that I went to A&E so we did.
It was totally packed and after getting booked in I was told to take a seat.
We managed to find 1 free seat and poor Ant spent the majority of our time in A&E standing up. This wouldn’t have been so bad if we hadn’t had to wait there for around 6 hours, but we did and it was absolutely awful.

Too Much Walking & No Cannula

During the 6 hours waiting, I was seen by a triage nurse, another nurse took some blood, but didn’t want to try putting a cannula in because she had trouble finding a vein for the blood.
I also had very high blood pressure which wasn’t normal for me.
Another nurse came and gave me some oral morphine after a few hours and Ant asking at the desk if there was anything they could do.

The pain was getting worse and I was about out of energy.

The oral morphine didn’t work and after another hour or so they gave me another dose and said I’d be going for a scan shortly.
Not long after, they called me for my scan and I had to walk, very slowly and bent over because it felt like my insides were going to drop out, down a very long corridor.

When I got to the end the nurse asked where my cannula was.

I didn’t have one and I just wanted to cry when she said I’d have to go back down the very long corridor and wait in A&E again until I got a cannula. Come to think of it, I think I did cry at one point!
I made my way back to A&E and thankfully didn’t have to wait long before a lovely doctor came and a put a cannula in with no problems at all!

Finally, Pain Relief

I was taken to a bed and felt myself relax just a little because all the pressure was taken off my stomach.
Another nurse came and injected me with some magic! I’ve had morphine injected before, but it was when I was having an emergency c-section and I was out of it for most of the time so I didn’t really feel the effects.

I totally felt the effects this time and I can only describe it as magic!

After the first injection, she asked how the pain was and I told her that it was the best it had been all night. She gave me another and asked again, I said the pain was gone, I could just feel a bit of tenderness. She gave me another and my whole body relaxed. I felt totally normal again and had to fight to stay awake.
The pain for all those hours had totally taken it out of me, I had no energy at all.

Scan Time

I didn’t have to wait long for my scan and when it was done, they said they didn’t think it was my hernia at all, they said I have huge gallstones. They did say that I’d have to wait for the doctor, though, for a proper diagnosis.

I was taken to the ward after the scan and booked in by a really lovely nurse.

A doctor came to see me a while later and said it was my hernia causing the trouble. Some of my bowel had been trapped, but it seemed to have all gone back to normal.

Home Time

Ant left me on the ward just after 6 am. I managed to get about half an hours sleep before the ward lights were switched on at 7 am!
I can’t remember ever being so tired.

Another doctor came and examined me. He confirmed everything had gone back in place because I would have been in terrible pain when he touched me if it hadn’t.
He said I’d need to wait to see the consultant to see if he would want to repair it anyway or whether he would be happy for me to leave and lose more weight before having the operation.

The consultant said he was happy for me to go home and I said I was happy to be going!

Tough Week

I was tired and falling asleep for the rest of the day on Tuesday, but I expected to be back to normal the next day after a full nights sleep.
I was wrong, I was nowhere near normal, I still felt totally drained of all energy and it’s taken me the best part of the week to start feeling normal again.

The super wonderful husband has been even more super and even more wonderful this week! I don’t know what I’d do without him and I hope I never have to find out.



Happy New Year And Looking Back At 2018

So here we are at the start of another new year. I’ve been thinking about making some New Year’s resolutions, but I very rarely stick to them so I’m probably going to give them a miss this year, again!

As usual, I’ve been looking back through my blog and picked a favourite post from each month of 2018.

Looking Back – January

Sisterly Lovesisterly love - Kaycee helping Ella with homework


Snow – 2 excited girls!

Snow day February 2018


Murder Mystery Whodunnit for MacMillan Cancer

KayCee and Emma


We now have an adult child!

Aiden's 18th birthday


Our beautiful KayCee

KayCee drinking hot chocolate


Ella Selfies

Ella selfie again!


I turned 42

birthday presents and flowers - 42 today


KayCee turned 13

KayCee on her 13th birthday

Ella turned 11

Ella on her 11th birthday


No more Junior School for Ella

Ella's first day at secondary school


We did lots of baking in October

great british bake off bloggers 2018 mille feuille with strawberries and cream, strawberry tarts and chocolate chou buns and eclairs


Even more baking in November. This is our showstopper!

Edible landscape - gingerbread house, choux bun mountain, fudge path, shortbread 3d Christmas tree and sugar paste snowman, deer and robin


Although it went far too fast, we all had a lovely Christmas and a wonderful New Year’s Eve at my brother and sister-in-law’s.

Presents under and around the tree






New Year’s Eve Plans

We don’t usually make any New Year’s Eve plans; we stay home and have a quiet night. If we manage to stay up until midnight we’re doing well!

This year is going to be different, however, because we’ve been invited to my brother and sister-in-law’s house for a New Year’s Eve party 🙂
They live in Derbyshire and we live in Lincoln so we’re going to be staying overnight.

I’m really looking forward to it. When I was growing up one or other of my aunts would have a party on New Year’s Eve and I loved going to them. It’s going to make a really nice to change to spend the evening with family.

New Year's Eve plans 2019

Do you have any special plans for New Year’s Eve?


My Favourite Christmas Photos Taken In 2018

I’ve not taken as many photos this Christmas I usually do, for example, I totally forgot to take any photos at all on Boxing Day! I’m seeing this as a good thing, however, because it means I was enjoying the day with my family and not worrying about getting photos for the blog of social media.
Here are my favourite Christmas photos taken in 2018.

1 – The first snowball drink of the season

Favourite Christmas photos 2018 - the first snowball drink of the season

2 – KayCee and Ella decorating the tree. Aiden helped but he doesn’t like his photo taken!

decorating the Christmas tree

3 – Every year my Christmas mug collection gets bigger and bigger!

Christmas mug collection

4 – I’m going to be very sad when I have to take down the tree.

Our Christmas tree all decorated and pretty

5 – We all love the treat trolley 🙂

Our Christmas treat trolley

6 – The North Pole breakfast is very popular!

North Pole breakfast

7 – We have many ways to countdown advent!

book advent, chocolate advent calendars, dvd advent, activity advent

8 – It took many hours to make this Christmas cross stitch but it was worth it.

Santa Christmas cross stitch

9 – This is my own Christmas tradition; hot chocolate, chocolate, a Christmas TV guide and a pen to circle what we’re going to watch 🙂

Christmas tv guide, box of matchmakers, hot chocolate with marshmallows and a Nutcracker pen to circle what we're going to watch

10 – Our first family get together of the get together


11 – Our second family get together on Christmas Eve.

Christmas eve party

12 – Santa came

Presents under and around the tree

13 – Opening presents on Christmas morning

opening presents on Christmas morning

14 – My delicious Christmas dinner cooked by the super wonderful husband.

Christmas dinner