Saturday, 28 June 2014

Crafting on

Yesterday I got home from work to be asked by Stephanie is she could paint some of the clay pots she made a little while ago. So out come the paints.

I had been planning on coming home and getting this beast out so that I could get on with extra large pile of paper work I need to do this week;
Oh well I thought it's only another half hour, it'll wait. My baby won't. So we painted her pots. Then she found her old shaker maker set, can we do this?
So we did. Then the hamma beads were found, so we did those;
A crafty box set for eraser making was discovered lurking in the cupboard. So we did those as well;

By which time it was 9pm. Hmm I said its' already late when you have a swimming lesson first thing in the morning. Shower and bed. So Stephanie showered and I took the beast upstairs. My foot was hurting you see so I thought I would sit in bed and get on with the paperwork. I could use my headphones and listen to the radio as I worked. This was at 9.30pm. Something must have gone wrong with the plan though as the next thing I now it is 6.30AM and I have a little lady showing me that the eraser models we baked before she went to bed had cooled down. I was getting a good morning story from the characters we had created.
I guess I was a little tired after all. The paperwork is still here, I have managed about 1/5 of it this afternoon in between house work and loom bracelet making on the new kit Stephanie bought herself whilst we shopped this morning.
 Oh well I have had fun with my baby girl, soon she'll be a teenager (eek!) and won't want to spend time with me. I'll just have to manage to work through my lunches this week to catch up. sandwiches and easy to eat at the computer food. It is worth it!!

Tuesday, 24 June 2014


I have damaged my foot :-(

I am not sure how I have done it, but my paramedic friend says it is most likely a hairline fracture on one of the metatarsals. I need to rest it and it will heal.

It's feel very Ouchy today. It happened last Monday. look it's very swollen

I'm not enjoying the not running. It's how I wake up and prepare for the day ahead. It has become a very important part of my day. I need to rest it for 4-8 weeks.

Feeling a little sorry for myself as I hobble around home and work at the moment.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

playful fun- the beetle game

On Friday evening Stephanie asked if we could play a game. She had an idea for a new game for us to play. I said ok what do we need, we collected the bits and pieces she wanted us to use.

Then she disappeared. Very strange, I thought she had gone to the toilet and started to potter around doing some household jobs whilst I waited for her. When she came back she brought this with her;

It is the instructions for the game. I tis not very clear but it says
1. head
2. body
3. antennae
4. eyes
5. wings
6. legs

We had to roll the dice and we got the corresponding body part. The only requirements were that you had to get the body first. You couldn't get the antenna and eyes until you had a head.
At the end of the game you end up with these;

What a fun way to create a Friday night treat!

Thursday, 19 June 2014

busy week/amazing children!

The other day I posted about how Stephanie had participated in a swimming gala in which her school came 2nd over all.

Well this evening I have been to Dylan's consultation evening at school. I am very pleased to say that have I been told by every teacher that I have a clever and polite young man who should achieve incredible grade. In many subjects he is on track for a/a*. VERY proud mummy here this evening!!
Well I am proud of him everyday but it is so nice to see that he is doing so well and all teachers had good things to say about him.

I always knew this little fella was amazing, but it so very nice to be told it by 10 other people in a 2 hour space of time :-D

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Getting there

The other day I blogged about feeling a little overwhelmed. Since making a plan to get the problems sorted I am feeling much more in control. The housework was getting on top of me, the paperwork was getting a bit much. It's been hot and making it difficult to sleep which hasn't helped.
I have stuck to the plan for the housework to get back in control and I am almost there. I have been doing a little of each job a day and chipping away at them. The ironing was a massive problem for me, I hate the washing building up. Just a couple of days in and it is nearly gone. I have cleared this much each time I got the ironing board out;
So that has left the overflowing basket which had more than twice the amount it could hold in it now looks like this;
After tomorrow's ironing session it should be empty. Then it will be a ten minute job each day as I empty the dry clothes of the line to keep up to date. Hopefully I can keep up with the momentum and not let myself get behind again. I have also been following my menu plan so getting more organised with dinners freeing up more time of an evening.
I have a busy weekend so need to keep going so that I get everything done that needs to be.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

My little star

Today was a busy day work straight from work for a 40 mile drive to another school as Stephanie had been asked to swim in a gala representing her school. Stephanie was taken there by another mum as I didn't have time to leave work, collect her and get to the next school in time for the gala to start. Luckily coming straight from my work I arrived at the same time as Stephanie. So I didn't miss any of the gala, I had been worried I might miss the beginning races and we didn't know the running order until we got there.

Stephanie's team were fantastic, even without mummy goggles I don't think anyone could dispute this as only 3 of the 20 children had ever swam in a competition before. Stephanie was a non competitor before today. Her school gave it their all and came 2nd overall! What a fantastic result especially as Stephanie's school does not have a pool and so the children only swim for one term per year with the school and then when us parents take them. The other schools  in the competition had their own pools, which talking to the other parents are used several times a week for training.

I am so proud of Stephanie and her friends/ team mates as were all of the other parents I sat with during the competition. We are very  proud of our children :-)

Listening to the rules before she began.

Monday, 16 June 2014

feeling a little less blue

You may have noticed I was feeling a little blue yesterday.
I am feeling better today, I have a plan and that always helps me to feel more organised.

I am doing a little of each of the jobs that were making me feel overwhelmed.
Stephanie's bedroom has been bothering me for a while. I ended up tidying as I chatted to my sister on the phone yesterday. I had only intended to get it started so that she felt more able to complete to, I have almost finished the room during my chat without realising.

The ironing is 1/3 complete. It is 2 weeks worth of ironing so it won't be finished for a couple of days but 15 minutes a day is clearing it.

I have almost caught up with my paperwork.

I have loaded one thing onto eBay this morning, one a day until it is all gone.
I even made myself breakfast this morning;

It is a green smoothie, full of spinach well my iron keeps dipping low so am trying to boost it. I didn't have time to drink it before I left for work so I put it in a flask cup with the intention of drinking it as I set up for the day. Except when I got to work I discovered I had left the cup on the kitchen side. Oh well I guess I am one step closer to making sure I have breakfast.
I have spent this evening doing some school work, chatting with my children and making the dinner for tomorrow as I know I have a busy day as Stephanie has a swimming gala 40 minute drive from home straight after school. So I have made dinner so that it just needs heating and I don't have to rush/stress after work.
I now need to go and finish my marking and then I can go to bed. I am tired but I know that I will be back organised by the weekend. I am also having a night out on Saturday so that is something to look forward to. Well not a night out where I spend lots of money. It is a night out with friends camping, so all I need is a bottle of wine and a little meat to add to the bbq.

Sunday, 15 June 2014


I am feeling a little disillusioned/overwhelmed at the moment. I want a simpler life but not sure how/if it is possible for me to do.

So much to do at home, work and things I would like to do if I had more time. I want to crawl into a box and only do the things I want to do and ignore the rest. That's not possible so I curl up and sleep. Also not productive.

I felt like this a month or so ago, went to give blood and found my iron levels were too low and so mine was no use. Maybe they have dipped again. Last month when I felt like this I added spinach to everything I could, and had green smoothies for breakfast. Admittedly I have tailed off the last 2 weeks. Perhaps I need to reassess my diet. I may be eating the wrong foods.

I need to a plan to get myself sorted. I will start by making a menu plan using what food we have, then create a shopping list for what is needed to supplement the plan.

I have been growing veggies in my garden,

the strawberries and raspberries are thriving in all this glorious weather that we are having, the spinach etc. however is not. My cabbage and other greens have shrivelled and are not looking healthy. I think I need to get some more planters and put them pout the front. My garden is south facing which is glorious for me but it does get incredibly hot. I am hoping that if I put pots by the front my lovely neighbours will leave them alone.

This is the front of our home, so not much of a front garden, but I may be able to put a couple of pots out there.

I think I need to make a list of all the things I need/want to get done and set a goal of at last one thing a day to help me get to feeling back in control.

I have for home;
organise the eBay pile- put one thing on to sell a day maybe
ironing- this has got to be a large overflowing basket as I have put it off- 10 mins  day un til caught up
garden, I have managed to make a start on this but 5 mins weeding a day to get up to date
menu plan for the week
baking- I want to make a treat for our lunches etc
breakfast- must make time for this
general cleaning- 15 mins a day- its not dirty just need to keep on top and organise clutter
Stephanie's bedroom- 15 mins a day to declutter.
time to 'just be' with the children, talking and actually listening/ playing whatever it is they want ot do. Stephanie and I curled on the sofa and watched a film together last night. It was bliss. She must have felt the need for it too as she snuck into my bed for a cuddle about 4am. She is still snoozing there now.

I have a lot to do for work and a stressful week coming up. I need to keep focussed and not let things overwhelm me. Today I need to
plan for the week
finish my marking
write 1 school report- if I write one a day they will soon get finished!

I think the main thing I need to do is focus on one task at a time and get my head down to do a little of each a day to get me back to where I want to be instead of feeling like I can't get everything done and overwhelmed so hiding!

things aren't all bad I have managed a few tasks, I took some old shoes to the clothes recycling place I got £5.50 for 2 crates of shoes we don't use anymore. All goes into the summer holiday pot.
I also used the club card boost to get a day at Thorpe park for me and Dylan (Stephanie doesn't like rides) and a day at Drusilla's for Stephanie. So that is 2 days sorted for the summer. We also  have a LEGOLAND trip planned for my nephews birthday treat- I have half price vouchers for this.

So where am I going to start today? I am just off to menu plan and organise a shopping list for when the shops open. Then I shall get breakfast.
I will do my marking while I wait for Stephanie to get up.
This afternoon we are off out to meet up with my sister at a free festival locally. So I need to check out times/ locations for the thing we want to see. I feel a little better just for having a plan.

I will check in during the week to let you know how I am getting on.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Still here...

I am still here just rather overwhelmed by real life at the moment. I seem to be moving non stop and not getting too far. a few pictures to see what I have been up to

Enjoying the start of our home grown produce. Lot's of spinach consumed to boost the low iron count.
still running several times a week. I ran a 10k race on Sunday- so hot. I was relieved to find the finish line lol
Enjoying spending time in the garden with my princess with discussions about whether clouds are really mad elike candyfloss or not and how cool it would be to fly above a cloud and pick some just like picking raspberries from our bush! LOL
I will be back another day with a real blog post.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Learning to budget

My children have never had just what they want bought when they want it, yet recently they seem to think nothing of asking for this or that when in the supermarket and sometimes I have given in a bought it other times I say no. They seem to be worse at the moment and then teenager sulks when he is told no! My gosh he never reacted like that as a toddler he'd just shrug it off and move on to the next thing.

So I have decided for their own good (and mine!) it's time to stand firm. So last night I called them to a room with me armed with this little lot

An inventory of items in the freezer and all the cash I had. That is £28.00. I asked them what they would like to have for dinners this week- the only catch was it has to use what is in the freezer. This is the menu they came up with

Sunday- Quorn curry
Monday- trout and pasta
Tuesday- meatballs in tomato sauce
Wednesday- Bolognese/ jacket potatoes
Thursday- tuna pasta
Friday- home made pizza
Saturday- lasagne/ jacket potato

We then looked at the extra ingredients we would need- what do we already have in stock. What do we need for lunches etc. We wrote the shopping list, worked out a rough costing and decided we could afford what the children had chosen.

So this morning armed with just the cash- I left my main purse with cards in it at home, and a shopping list we did a weekly shop. I had a can I get a new pair of play shoes from Stephanie,  and I'd really like some more cartoon socks from Dylan as we started to head in the door. Can you afford your food and those items? I asked. harrumph from the big one and off they set with the shopping list. Stephanie seemed to  enjoy the challenge of finding the best deal, Dylan was dead against as we wandered around. I used the calculator on my phone to add up the total as each new item was added to the basket, with the intention of telling them if we got close so that they could make a choice if needed. As it happened the shopping came to £20.76 so a fair bit under the £28 I had given them.

So we bought a £1.50 bunch of flowers to pop on my Mum's grave after we had had a bit of a tidy up there.

I plan on doing this with the children for the rest of the month, I am hoping by them having to make the choices and see how much of our money goes on 'just this little thing' it might stop impulse buying and the I want's as we do our shopping. Friday night is going to be the set the menu and work to the budget evening for the next few weeks at least.

Devon snaps

Just to share a few pictures from our holiday. We had such a great time that I had Stephanie sad face sat next to me all the way home as she didn't want to leave! LOL

Some of the stunning views from various hills in Ilfrascombe. Lot's of do we have to climb up there mum, but they enjoyed the views as much as I did once we were at the top lol

These are some shots of the Ilfrascombe aquarium, it is a small aquarium that shows only fish native to the area. The staff were very friendly and answered Stephanie's questions and explained lots of different things to her. It cost £10 in total for the 3 of us to go in.
At Exmoor zoo, it was a little bit of a rainy day so coats on hoods up! Off we went. you can get really close to the animals here, it was a fantastic little zoo.

At the Linton and Barnstaple railway. This little railway is trying to fix up the line so that I t runs further. At the moment it is a 2 mile round trip. We got off at the other end and had a short wander around. The line has potential once it is completed but currently is in the early stages. There wasn't a huge amount at the other end to occupy the children so really you are just going for a 2 mile round trip. We wandered along some country lanes and across fields but still didn't find much- other than cow pat and the resulting discussion surrounding this lol.

This has turned into a longer blog post than I had intended already. I shall leave it there and post some more pictures etc later. There are a couple more things from our holiday I want to share :-)