So the other night was movie night, we have a good sized collection of Disney classics, as any home should and Lady and the Tramp happens to be one of them.
Now we have watched this film countless times but probably not for a few months and this time I came to realise how much my little persons mind is changing. There were a lot of questions she has never asked before and I guess I just assumed she knew the answers to or I didn’t want to explain because I thought she would get upset.
So I thought I would share with you her questions and my answers to give you some idea of how a 7 year olds mind works.
T- Why is there one puppy at the end which looks like tramp and the rest look like lady?
Me- Well because they had puppies together.
T- but how did they get one looking like the dad because puppies go in the mummies tummy?
Me- well because he is the Dad and Lady is the Mummy so some look like each one, like Poppy looks like her Daddys colour but her Mummy’s size. (I bailed at this point and did not go any further into why the dogs look like the Mum and Dad! She’s only 7!)
T- what does lost your sense of smell mean?
Me- that dog is a hound so he uses his sense of smell to hunt things out so as he’s got a little older he can’t smell things as well any more which for him is pretty sad.
T- where is the dog in the pound going?
At this point the dog is being taken for the ‘long walk’ from which he never returns.
Me- well in the old days when they had a dog at the pound and no one came to claim him they would kill it after a few days because they didn’t have enough space to keep them all.
*watches T’s face for reaction*
T- and the dog just thought he was really going for a long walk, he was excited to go out the door.
Me- yes babe.
*realises this film is actually pretty sad in places*
T- Why does Lady get that put on her face?
Me- because the Aunt thinks she is going to bite the baby so they put those on dogs that aren’t very nice to keep them from hurting anyone.
T-why does the Beaver need that log in the river?
Me- because they like to build a dam to stop the water so they have a home to live in.
And that’s all folks!
The lesson for today- no matter how much you think your kids can follow these films and they have watched them since they were tiny there is still a lot they really don’t understand so one day be ready for the questions!
Every year T has a birthday party and every year I plan and plan, make things myself, think up activities, design decorations and manage to pull it off, with a little help from friends and family anyway!
This year T wants a Charlie and the Chocolate factory birthday party. This is one of her favourite films and she has watched it so many times each time finding it just as exciting. Its a pretty common theme if you look online there are a whole host of ideas for Willy Wonka parties and it’s at this time Pinterest becomes my best friend and most commonly used app!
Some people wonder why I plan parties at home designing the decorations and games myself, spending weeks planning the food, Party bags, games and invitations but when you have a little person who has a favourite film/book/person why wouldn’t you want to create a magical fun filled party for them to enjoy with their friends at home? After all they aren’t this small forever and give it a couple of years every year we will be spending parties elsewhere at a cost I’m sure!
Last year we had Princess Tiana as the theme, standard really as T stands for Tiana and before that we have had a Princess Belle party also. Don’t get me wrong we have had parties out, for her 6th birthday she had a pamper party at a beauty salon where all the little girls got their hair plaited and sprayed with glitter and had their nails painted pretty colours. It was so much fun for them and all I had to plan was the cake and party bags so I’m really not against parties that are entertained for you I just love creating a party myself!
So this year so far I’ve got planned the following games;
Balloon burst to find golden ticket in violet
Guess how many in jar
Eating doughnuts from string
Make your own sweetie necklace
Pass the parcel
Photos in the wonka tv
Musical statues & bumps
I’m sure more will be added along the way as it takes quite a few activities to entertain about 10 little girls for an 1hour/1 hour 30! I thought the Wonka wordsearch could be used while i’m preparing something else and maybe the top three quickest will receive a small prize. I’ve already printed these wordsearches for free online so that is one small job done!
Here is some more of my inspiration from online, there will two golden tickets inside two balloons on Violet and the lucky winners will receive a prize, along with the winner of who can eat their doughnut first without using their hands!
I’m planning to try and make a Willy Wonka hat from cardboard and tissue paper and obviously the plates and cups will need to be as bright as possible to fit in with the theme of the chocolate factory!
I’ve also found some golden ticket invitations that you can print from Pinterest for £1.20, this gives you a PDF editable download of a golden ticket along with the outside cover of a Wonka bar so you an actually make a Wonka bar with a golden ticket inside as the invitation! It also helpfully tells you that the cheapest place to go for the chocolate is Asda as it comes already in silver foil! I will post pictures of these once they are done.
I think the below will be fairly easy to make as we have an old swimming float that is no longer used and Scott is going to try and get me some long cardboard tubes from work, we can also decorate paper plates with stripes to look like lollipops too.
The paper sweets will take two minutes with some tissue paper and tape too.
This is the cake I am having made for the party and the cupcakes will be party favours along with a toothbrush! (An idea I saw online and thought was really cute, after all the kids will be eating a lot of sugar at the party!)
So this week I had a mini meltdown when I learnt that my usual helpers will not be around for this party! After a day of feeling completely and utterly alone, even asking family that live an hour away with no joy, I’ve decided the party will go ahead and even if I have to do the whole thing on my own I will manage and T will have a great time!
I have a couple of months before the big day which is perfect for me as I hate being rushed at anything and this way I can take my time doing bits and bobs each week and fitting it in around Christmas shopping also!
Any ideas, suggestions or tips anyone has on this I would love to hear!
Wow I can’t believe I made a year! When I started this blog it was as an outlet to share my experiences with braces as an adult and to hopefully learn from other people’s journey also. The thing is it’s turned into much more than that! I’ve learned I love to document my life! Sharing experiences, hobbies, days out, trips away, special moments gives me real enjoyment and it’s the lovely comments and likes I get from readers around the world that keeps me writing. I have written about so many things in the last year from my experiences as a step parent to buying our puppy last year. I’ve talked about my love of being married and the happiness it brings to my struggles of trying to progress a career while still being a present parent. I’ve continued to document my experiences with braces and will keep on doing so in the hope that they help others deliberating whether or not to take the plunge or are already on their journey. My new found love of walking/hiking has been a hot topic over the summer months this year culminating in a walking challenge which saw me walk over 80 miles in a month!
This blog has been like a journal at times being the first thing I want to do when I’m going through a tough time and a way to vent my frustration while also sometimes allowing me to see my opinions in a different light.
Reviews of places I’ve been have almost become a part of the experience now and it’s a given to my husband that some of the many photos I take will be specifically for my blog. If I can show someone how great a place was or how dog friendly somewhere can be and they can enjoy it as much as I did then my writing is all worthwhile.
There are plenty of mum blogs out there and I don’t just write about my experiences as a Mum but this has also been a huge part of my blog. Again if I can show someone else what we get up to and they enjoy doing it then why not!
Whatever my chosen topic is I would just like to say thank you to everyone that has taken the time to read my posts, like them and leave a comment. Without your interest I wouldn’t have continued to write and had 2 pieces published, something I would never even have attempted to do before this!
My plan for the future is to keep blogging, sharing my happy times and my sad times too, hopefully helping others with my braces experiences and reviewing everywhere I go!
I hope you’ve enjoyed my journey so far and here’s to the next year!
I love this time of year, the leaves are crunching under your feet, the mornings are starting to turn a little crisp and the the nights are drawing in making the days feel very autumnal. This time of year brings so many opportunities for activities with your little ones and with half term approaching what better time than now to start planning your days! Here are a few activities that will keep you and your little ones occupied over the Autumn break.
Plan a nature trail
Firstly plan a walk, this could be round a local park, nature reserve, farm or just round your local neighbourhood and can last for however long you want. Longer walks can be planned in with a snack stop in the middle!
Next take an A4 piece of plain paper and write out anything you can spot along the way. This could be anything from animals to farm gates, bat boxes to railway lines, or from conkers to post boxes! A little drawing next to the item helps your small person to identify the object even if they are too young to read the words.
Now set off with a pen and something to rest on and enjoy checking off everything on your list!
This can be varied by creating trails for different things such as writing out every letter of the alphabet and trying to spot an object for each letter or every colour of the rainbow!
Be imaginative and keep your little ones interested by helping them with clues when they get stuck and this can be an activity everyone will enjoy!
Set off on a leaf collecting mission!
Take a walk around your neighbourhood and collect up different leaves, they can be all different shapes and sizes but ideally they need to be whole. Once you get home there are lots of different activities to choose from, you could create a leaf animal by sticking your leaves on paper and adding heads, arms, legs, tails or wings!
You could even create a story with your different leaf characters on a few sheets of paper! Let your imagination run wild and give your leaf characters names, draw them houses and think what their favourite food, colour or activity might be! Maybe create a short bio for each character stating their name, age and most embarrassing moment!
Make your own tree
Take a large piece of plain paper and draw the trunk and branches of a tree. Now take your leaves and glue them on to the branches. You can use as many or as little leaves as you want as its your design, you could even add orange glitter to really make your tree design pop!
Make a leaf butterfly
Take a piece of plain paper and arrange your leaves in the shape of a butterfly.
Try to make your leaves symmetrical and fan them out into the shape of a butterfly’s wings. You can use stalks for antennae and once you have finished perfecting your
design glue your butterfly into place!
Conkers are in plentiful supply at this time of year and used to be for one thing and one thing only, this being conker championships but nowadays there are so many more things you can do with them. The good old fashioned game of conkers can still be fun and is easy to do by simply drilling a hole through the middle of a conker and threading some string through you can try and beat your opponent but seeing whose conker is made of stronger stuff!
Another way to use conkers is to decorate them and leave them around the house in jars or ramekins. You can use paint, glitter glue or stickers, go crazy and create some Halloween themed conkers painting them orange to look like little pumpkins or green for mini monsters!
Now this is one of our favourite activities to do as not only do you get to carve a pumpkin at the end of it you also spend time together as a family choosing the perfect pumpkin for your creations! We have local farm where we can go and pick but there are locations up and down the country where you are able to wander off into fields of pumpkins with a wheelbarrow and come back with your desired crop. Remember to keep in mind if you go for the biggest pumpkin you will need a design that will carry it off, the same applies for the smallest which means its best to choose a medium sized pumpkin unless you want to be carving for a very long time! Usually at these locations there are other activities going on during peak Pumpkin picking season, there might be a pop up cafe or a farm shop or a bird of prey display.
Its always good to support local businesses and although pumpkin picking usually works out more expensive than buying one from a supermarket it is much more of an activity that can take a good couple of hours up before you have even started work on your pumpkin carving!
Make pumpkin soup
This is one of my favourite things to do with the left over pumpkin after we have carved our Halloween lanterns. Its so simple and tastes delicious, a sure way to warm up after an Autumn walk. Here is the recipe I use and it always gets a great response!
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, then gently cook the onions for 5 mins, until soft but not coloured.
Add the pumpkin to the pan, then carry on cooking for 8-10 mins, stirring occasionally until it starts to soften and turn golden.
Pour the stock into the pan and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 mins until the pumpkin is very soft.
Pour the double cream into the pan, bring back to the boil, then purée with a hand blender. For an extra-velvety consistency you can pour the soup through a fine sieve. The soup can now be frozen for up to 2 months.
To make the croutons: cut the bread into small squares. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, then fry the bread until it starts to become crisp. Add a handful of pumpkin seeds to the pan, then cook for a few mins more until they are toasted. These can be made a day ahead and stored in an airtight container.
Reheat the soup if needed, taste for seasoning, then serve scattered with croutons and seeds and drizzled with more olive oil, if you want!
I hope you enjoy these half term activities and can make the most of spending time with your little one without braking the bank.
So it’s been a great weekend for hunting rocks in the local area! At first we hadn’t found any and then there was a sudden post on the Facebook page saying there had been 8 hidden practically on our doorstop! At that moment it didn’t matter that it was 7.30 at night and dark and wet outside, me and my girl were going on a rock hunt!
So armed with the clues posted on the page and my torch on my phone off we set to find some rocks! As it happened the closest two to our house had already gone! Persistence paid off though and we came home with three beauties!
T was so happy with the unicorn she decided to keep it and so we were spurred on today to create our own! These are our creations in their hiding places today 😊
We also had a couple of added bonuses on a trip out today and as driving along a road Scott suddenly spotted a rock we looked for last night so quickly pulled the car over and we picked up this!
The 2nd exciting bonus was when I was just checking the page and to my surprise I saw a rock had been dropped right outside our house on a wooden post! T quickly ran outside and picked it up and we hid it again outside her school ready to be found tomorrow.
We hid the balloon rock again and along with ours that meant we hid 7 more rocks today and Scott has just finished his design ready to go out tomorrow! This really is a game everyone can get involved in and we love how it’s taken off in our local area!
So today I feel flat, not upset, not emotional, not stressed just flat. I’m not sure if it’s my brother moving to Japan for a year, I had a small cry yesterday morning when I wrote him a little goodbye post, a long term colleague leaving announcing he’s leaving, Me turning down an offer of what would have meant I was working full time hours every week because I felt I couldn’t make the commitment to my family I want to be able to or just because everyone else seems to be moving forwards while I’m stood still.
There is a limit to what I can do with my employment if I still want to be there for the sports days, special assemblies, teaching training days and ballet lessons. There are only so many hours im available to work if I don’t want T in after school club every day and want her to continue her out of school hobbies.
Motherhood is the most wonderful thing I’ve ever done but I feel like to do it properly I have to sacrifice all lifestyle/career changes until T reaches high school. No I don’t particularly want to move to Japan but I would like to be able to say yes I’m making a change. Wouldn’t it be great to say yes I’m moving on to new and exciting chapters in my life? I’m starting a job I really want to do, a new challenge not to mention financially contributing more to my family than I currently do. Yet when an opportunity presents itself I feel like I can’t say yes because my family has to come first and working full time hours would mean sacrifices I don’t want to make.
It would be so nice to feel like I was making progression in my life, that I had a goal I could work towards achieving, besides motherhood instead of feeling like the world is changing around me while I stand still.
So this is it, the last day on my own! While Scott has been away on his annual windsurfing trip all week and I’m ready for him to come back now! I feel like this week out of all his trips I have felt more comfortable in my own company than any other before. Me and T have had a busy week with her having a party, two playdates, ballet, riding and first week of choir at school. To add to that I’ve been to work, attended a meeting at Ts school, managed to maintain the housework, seen lots of friends and yesterday finally managed to take Poppy out for longer than 20 minutes!
It’s been a good week but the highlight has to be visiting my brother on Thursday. He is leaving for Japan on Sunday for his 3rd year at University studying Japanese. He will be there for a year minimum studying so I really wanted to take a trip to see him before he went. It was a rush to get there and get back before the school pick up time at 3pm but I managed it and we had a really good catch up over hot chocolate and cake!
I gave him a few small but thoughtful gifts along with some Yen to take with him and he was really chuffed.
I got a reluctant photo of the both of us, he’s really not into photos for no reason as he calls it, and this is a smile for him!
Quirks and all I’m super proud of him for what he has achieved, all be it winging it a lot of the way he has still done all this and is going to live on the other side of the world on his own, something I couldn’t imagine him doing a few years ago.
T also had some good news this week in that she got a place on a 3 day residential trip in March with her school. She was super happy and I’m pleased for her, I feel it will be a great experience and she will love the freedom and independence it gives her. This was her happy face when she found out the news!
We also marked 4 years at ballet for T with the customary photo, my baby seems to small to have done anything for 4 years but she has!
All in all its been a good week, I feel like I’ve been able to create a good balance between Mummy and T time, Me time and Poppy time. Don’t get me wrong it’s been busy and a lot of work at times just the two of us but I feel like I’ve created a little routine and we have adapted just fine.
Half way round the lake yesterday though I wished I had someone to share this beautiful view with!
So Scott is away this week which leaves me in full on mission mode with Sunday as no exception!
Yesterday started with a riding lesson, and we celebrated the fact T has now been riding 2 years and still absolutely loves it!
Next we walked Pops and I tackled the lawn and cleaned the windows so it now longer looks like we have moved out and abandoned the garden!
Then some friends came round and the girls spent a while doing arts and crafts while we had a catch up, well deserved chill time until a huge spider decided to make an appearance and I had to rescue the two screaming girls from it 😄
Dinner time meant time for a little roast for me and my girl, it’s been a while since I cooked a roast for us and it actually turned out really good.
Then we chatted to Scott, read some of T’s school book, cleared up from dinner, made lunches, ironed shirts and finally watched half an hour of tv together.
Is it any wonder she was fast asleep within minutes at bed time? 😊
One productive weekend over and done, I’ve so got this!
Thanks for reading
So for the next 7 days I am officially a single Mum! Scott has gone away on his yearly windsurfing trip with his Dad so it’s just me and my girl all week! This means a few things,
We can stay up late watching Princess filled Disney films, the kind that boys don’t really want to watch but will do if they have to.
We are one down at meal times which means we seem to have leftovers as I am no longer used to cooking for 1 and a half people!
I don’t need to worry about being alone in my bed because a certain little person has already moved in!
Girls playdates and Mummy catch ups with coffee are on the agenda at every available opportunity.
So with this fun filled girly week ahead also comes great responsibility! Certain things I just am not used to doing anymore for example:
Full garden mantainence falls to me which with this constant rain means cutting the ever growing lawn is going to build those arm muscles!
I’m now on full bin duty, including food waste, recycling, and general waste, yay me!
I am the only person available to walk Poppy for the next 7 days, which doesn’t sound too bad but when you are suddenly cook, cleaner, homework monitor, hairdresser, laundry maid, ironing chief, pet carer, employee and mother fitting in 2 walks a day every day isn’t as easy as it sounds!
Then there is the emotional side of things:
After my tightening yesterday my braces are as standard, crazy painful and hard lumps are forming in my mouth already where they’re rubbing.
Evenings will be lonely, Yes I have plans for some of them but it’s that last part before bed when you are watching lame tv and just fancy a cuddle that it really hits you.
I don’t care how old you are when you are alone in a house and it’s dark outside and you hear a noise it’s scary, especially with only a small fluffy dog for protection!
I now have to be the brave one! There is no Scott to call if a spider decides to make an appearance in the house, a crazy person decides to drive the wrong way round a round about and come head on towards me as per last Monday or T loses another tooth which she keeps telling me is starting to wobble!
Until you are in this situation where you find yourself on your own whether for a short time or for longer you take for granted and come to realise just how much of a partnership your marriage is and how much of a team you are. Now I know I can get through this week and enjoy some time to myself aswell as manage the school run, look after T and Poppy and meet friends and family but if Scott was here we would do this all as a team.
As it stands I’m left making my own cups of tea and coffee for the next week and feeling eternally grateful my husband will be back to me before I know it because marriage is a partnership I now know I wouldn’t be without.❤
Well it’s been a really fun week off work and I’m so sad it’s had to come to an end. You would think for someone who thrives on routine and order that I would want to get some structure back in my life but it’s actually been so nice just going with the flow each day and taking things as they come. I do feel like healthy eating and exercise definitely suffer when there is no set schedule though. Don’t get me wrong we haven’t stopped eating all things healthy, It’s just we have had more treats and with the poor weather we haven’t been able to get out and walk it off like we thought we would.
So the August walk/run challenge is still going strong and with my corker of a week last week at 20 miles I knew there was no way I was going to beat that this week! Not that I couldn’t have done it if I wanted to it’s just I find T needs a fair bit of encouragement to walk a good few miles and I just don’t have it in me to put her through that every day 😂 So my grand total for this week is 16.24 miles!
Not a patch on last week but still not bad going with the 3 full days of rain we have had this week. This also means I’m still in the lead on the challenge with a total of 31.8 miles. Scott is in 2nd place with a total of 22.8 miles and Emma, Well I think Emma forgot we were doing a challenge as she was going on holiday this week so we will have to excuse her in third place!
Next week I will have to up my game again as Scott will be back at running club so anything less than 3 miles daily and I might slip to 2nd place! I will keep the updates coming and hope for good weather!
The end of this week also brought a sleepover for T and her friend, after making cakes, watching a movie, walking the dog and playing games they had snacks and giggled in their beds until they finally fell asleep! It was such a cute evening but when it was over I was pleased I only had one little person to entertain once more!
Today the girls got to see each other again at a surprise birthday meal so they had another lovely few hours together. I honestly think they could spend a week together and not get bored!
Oh well back to work and holiday club we go tomorrow, I suppose the fun has to stop sometime!