Sisterhood of the World Blogger Award

I have been nominated for this award by three lovely bloggers!  My partner in crime on #TheList Hannah from Mums’ Days, Becky from Little O and Me and Sarah from Toby Goes Bananas.  I am very grateful for this award ladies!  They have all asked me 10 questions, which I will do my best to answer.  Be prepared for a bit of a question and answer fest!

Questions from Hannah

  • Shoes or Handbags?  Both!  Although in reality not much of either anymore.  Also I have really big feet, so it is sometimes difficult to find nice shoes.
  • Where is your favourite place in the world?  I have owned horses for most of my life, so consequently I have not travelled much.  I would say my favourite place is with my family at home.
  • What do you love most about blogging?  So many things!  I think top of the list is the community and all the friends I have made. 
  • What is your least favourite thing to do?  Cleaning, bleugh does anyone actually enjoy it?
  • What would you do with your time if you had all the money in the world?  Hubby and I have always dreamed of opening an animal rescue centre.
  • Which charity is closest to your heart and why?  I think animal charities always hit home with me, but also cancer charities as I have a family history of the disease.
  • What is your favourite organisation tip (house/cleaning/life/work/whatever!)?  For the blog (as my house is neither clean nor organised!) use the Editorial Calendar plug in.
  • What is your mum uniform?  Depends on the weather; Summer is usually a maxi skirt/dress, top and cardy/cover up.  In Winter the summer skirt is swapped for a wintery skirt or leggings!
  • What does a typical day look like for you? Baby wakes at 6am give or take, I blog while she has breakfast.  Then we usually go out somewhere. Baby will only nap in the car, so we always have to go on a trip.  This could be to the park, swimming, meeting friends etc.  I blog while Baby naps in the car.  Then our afternoons are usually spent at home, often playing in the garden.  Baby still has milk at 3pm and at 4pm we go up to have her bath.  Mr Hubby gets home at 4,30pm and he usually gives Baby her tea (while I do a bit more blogging!).  Then between 6pm-6.30pm Baby goes to bed.  I usually take her while Mr Hubby cooks dinner (as I hate cooking), but if dinner is already made Mr Hubby will take her.  Then I blog every evening, usually falling asleep around midnight!
  • I’m at the bar, what are you having?! Ooh maybe a cocktail!

 

Questions from Becky

  • If I gave you £100 (I know I’m too nice!) what would you buy right now?  Knowing me I would buy Baby some clothes!  What I do need is new shoes, so I should buy those.
  • What has been your favourite blog post you have written from the past year?  I find it hard to pick, as I think you like posts for different reasons.  My most read post was Blogging; A Full time job?  This is also my most retweeted post. 
  • Your favourite animal, and why?  Oh I love animals!  This is hard, my top three are Horses (have ridden all my life), Dogs (owned dogs all my life) and Giraffes (they are just so cool)!
  • Your current favourite blog?  This is so hard for me.  I genuinely have so many that I adore.  I would say at the moment I am excited about the wedding plans on Make, Do & Push and Tigerlilly Quinn.
  • What is your favourite time of the day?  Quite often 4.30pm when Mr Hubby gets home from work!
  • The biggest challenge you have overcome in the last year?  I would say PND.  I don’t feel that I have overcome it, but hopefully I am on the right track.
  • Your most used app?  Twitter and Instagram 
  • Whats your favourite beauty/hair product?  I don’t really have one.  I tend to just do the bare minimum and use whatever I have.
  • You can invite three people to a dinner party, who are they?  My lovely friends Em, Hannah and Hannah.  It would be a fabulous bloggers dinner party!
  • Describe yourself using only three words?  Loyal, Mummy, Tired!

 

Questions from Sarah

  • What one thing (not person) could you not live without?  Cups of tea!  They save my life on a daily basis, they restore me and comfort me. 
  • If you could live anywhere where would it be?  I think both Mr Hubby & I would love to live by the sea, a cute Cornish village would be lovely.
  • Hot or cold?  I think I prefer to be cold than hot, I love snuggling in jumpers and under blankets.
  • What’s your favourite film?  This is so hard.  My classics are Pretty Woman, Dirty Dancing & Bridget Jones.
  • What’s your earliest memory? I don’t know what my earliest is, but I remember little snippets of my childhood in Scotland (I loved there between the ages of 3-10  years).
  • What’s your favourite thing about blogging? I answered this is Hannah list – I think the Blogging community and the friends I have met, also I feel I am creating something special for Baby to look at when she is older.
  • What’s the oldest thing you own and how long have you had it?  I still have an old teddy bear (well dog) called Peter.  He must be approximately 30-35 years old now.
  • Sweet or savoury?  Sweet
  • If you had a day to yourself, no chores to do, no kids to look after, what would you do?  Probably Blogging! ha ha!  If you confiscated my laptop, then it would probably include a relaxing day out with Mr Hubby and a nice lunch somewhere.  Then an lazy afternoon reading.
  • Any regrets?  I sometimes wish I had been more career focused in my youth, rather that going with ‘heart’ jobs.  Oh and I bought a house when I was 20 and sold it to go to University, I wish I hadn’t sold it!

 

The rules for this award are…

* Thank the Blogger who nominated you
* Put the Logo on your Blog
* Answer the 10 questions put to you by the Blogger
* Nominate 10 Bloggers
* Give the 10 Bloggers, 10 new questions
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So my nominations are;
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My questions for these lovely people are;

  1. Where did your blog name come from?
  2. Book or Kindle/Tablet?
  3. What is your favourite song?
  4. Dogs or cats? Why?
  5. What is your favourite food?
  6. Name four dream dinner party guests (dead or alive)?
  7. If you could do any job, what would it be?
  8. Who is your blog crush?
  9. If you could go anywhere on holiday, where would you go?
  10. What is the weirdest thing about you?
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So over to you ladies!  Please tag me in the post and on Twitter so I know to pop by and have a look.

 

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Sisterhood Badge Sisterhood of the World Blogger Award

MMWBH3 Sisterhood of the World Blogger Award

The Black & White Photography Project #12

Photographer extraordinaire Charly over at Podcast Dove hosts a weekly photography linky, which gives us the opportunity to show off our Black and White pictures.

Baby spying on a Rhino.

Black White 12 767x1024 The Black & White Photography Project #12

Why not pop over and have a look at some other lovely black and white captures?


4d06e438 4e6a 4f3b 88b2 0c1093350397 zps361ad0e9 The Black & White Photography Project #12

 

A letter to Baby at 18 months old

I love to keep a monthly record of Baby progress, so that I can look back in years to come.  It will also help me remember when important things happened! (my memory is awful…).  Every six months I write Baby a hand written letter, which I pop into an envelope and keep for her to read when she is older.  I hope that she will enjoy them when she grows up.

So this brings me on to this post, today Baby is eighteen months old.  So it was time to write to her again.

thirteen to eighteen 1024x868 A letter to Baby at 18 months old

To my darling Baby,

I can’t believe I am writing your 18 month letter.  So much has happened in the last six months, the changes in you are immeasurable.  You have gone from cruising around the furniture and venturing the odd step, to running rings round Daddy and I.

You are so active and we rarely see you walk anywhere.  You much prefer to jog and run.  I think your brain works to fast to allow you to walk.  You want to be everywhere as quick as possible.  There is always something in your hand, you like nothing more than collecting things and sometimes struggle carrying your spoils around.

It seems as if every day you learn something new.  Your vocabulary is coming along and the new words this month have included cracker, cheese, ham, yo-yo, bubble plus a few others.  You adore chattering, and you spend most of the day talking.  You are so bright and have a smile that could light up even the darkest of days.

Taking after Mummy and Daddy, you are really tall.  People are always surprised when they learn your age.  You still don’t have much hair, but it is getting a bit longer at the back and so blonde.  It will take some getting used to when you finally have a full head of hair.

You love to help Mummy and Daddy and are gaining much more understanding of what we are saying.  Being able to carry out tasks and it is so nice to start this proper communication with you.

The last couple of months have been challenging.  I think you are being bothered by your teeth and feeling frustration at not being able to talk to us properly.  It has resulted in lots of crying and shouting, which is draining for us all.  Hopefully, things will start to settle soon.

You are bright, funny, beautiful, determined, loving, independent and I hope you always will be.

Every day you make me laugh, you make me smile, you make me proud, and above all you make me very very grateful to be your mummy,

 

All my love, to the moon and back,

Mummy xxx

11ghkra A letter to Baby at 18 months old

NCT Charity & Nearly New Sales

I first heard of the NCT in relation to their antenatal classes.  After having Baby, I went to a weekly coffee group organised by the NCT and met some fabulous ladies, some of which are now my closest friends.
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The NCT is the UK’s largest charity for parents.
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“We’re here to support parents. We give them accurate, impartial information so that they can decide what’s best for their family, and we introduce them to a network of local parents to gain practical and emotional support.”
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The NCT run courses, events and provide information to parents on pregnancy, birth and parenting.
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Last weekend we headed to the bi-yearly local Nearly New sale.  I LOVE these sales!  All the products are vetted before they are offered for sale, so you are assured of excellent quality items.  In the past we have managed to pick up some fabulous things at bargain prices.  Last year, the sales raised £1 million for the charity helplines, breastfeeding counselling and other projects.
nct FINAL 1024x810 NCT Charity & Nearly New Sales
I love the expectation of the bargains I may find!  The major benefit that the NCT sales have over other Children’s sales, is that everything is organised in categories.  So you do not have to search through each stall in the chance of finding things.  At NCT sales all the clothing and shoes are in one room and are hung on groups according to sex and age group.  All the toys and equipment are also grouped together.  This makes it so much easier to find what you are looking for and no time is wasted searching through unsuitable things.  At these sales time is of the essence!
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I was so lucky to be able to go in early, so I had a little more breathing time and after an initial wander round, I headed to the clothes room.  I wanted to show you what I bought, so you get an idea of the type of things you can find.
Clothes 1024x1024 NCT Charity & Nearly New Sales
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My main bargain is this lovely Ted Baker wool coat for £3!  It already has a home with a friends daughter when Baby outgrows it!.  I thought the dress and the bolero would be nice for Christmas outings.  I love cord, so the cute little skirt and trousers had to come home with us.
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Then it was onto the other room, which was filled with ride on’s, all different types of toys, books, puzzles, highchairs/prams, bedding, feeding and everything else you can imagine.  I immediately saw a wooden easel, that has paper roller on it too, for £8 and a stair gate for £5, both came home with me.  I also got this little lot.
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Toys 1024x741 NCT Charity & Nearly New Sales
I also picked up a bag of Happyland animals (£2), a Happyland Toy Shop (50p) and a mixed bag of lots of little ITNG figures for £1.  I couldn’t photograph them as Baby held them hostage!  We have given Baby all the books and a few other bits, but we have kept some things aside to add to her Christmas pile.
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So if you haven’t been to a NCT Nearly New Sale, I would advise that you find your nearest one and give it a whirl.  (In Berkshire the next sale is on March)
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If you are in the Berkshire area, the Newbury branch have a Cheeky Monkeys tea party coming up on 17th October 11am- 1pm.  Newbury also run weekly Social Bumps for pregnant mums/couples, Bumps and Babes and Crawlers & Explorers, for parents to meet others and get support locally.
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Have you ever been to an NCT Nearly New Sale?
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download1 zps16e15ea5 NCT Charity & Nearly New Sales
Disclosure: I was given early access to the sale in order to write this piece.  However, all opinions are 100% honest.

The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

Over the last few months Baby has developed much more of an interest in certain things.  One of these things is the television.  She never used to bother with it, would never pay much attention.  However, that has all changed.  She adores it!  Every morning we come down stairs and very quickly she is pointing to the TV and making noises, which must mean “mummy turn the TV on”.  She is very insistent!  n.b. I feel that I should say at this point, that we go out and about a lot, value outdoors adventures and do lots of reading with her too!

Anyway back to the TV, we are Team Disney Junior, her favourites being Doc McStuffins, Sofia the First, Sheriff Callie and Curious George.  They are repeated so often, sometimes twice a day, so I can almost recite the scripts by heart.  This doesn’t matter to Baby, as she watches as intently on the 50th watch, as she did on the 1st.  If she is watching Doc she likes to grab her character toys and hold them for the entire programme.

TV Baby 1024x648 The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

When she is watching Sheriff Callie, at the same point each time she lets out a massive shriek! (as she can’t say ye-ha yet!).  You know, I actually love these shows too.  Yes, they are a little cheesy (obviously), but they have great messages for children.

Quiet 802x10241 The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

Baby watching TV, a very ordinary thing to do, but filled with so much joy and delight for her.  I love watching her taking everything in, dancing along to the songs and talking to the characters.  Our very ordinary moments.

I am linking up with the following fabulous bloggers and their lovely linkys.

Katie from Mummy Daddy Me for #OrdinaryMoments

ordinary moment link The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

Jaime at The Olivers’ Madhouse for #MagicMoments magicmoments150x150 zps58f60c40 The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

Charly at Podcast Dove for #What’sTheStory whats the story The Doctor, Princess, Sheriff and Monkey

 

Living Arrows 39/52

It’s time to link up with ‘The 52 Project’ (Practising Simplicity) and the ‘Living Arrows’ (I Heart Snapping).  The aim is to take a picture that captures the beauty and magic of childhood in our eyes.  I am also linking with Snowing Indoors Point & Shoot linky.

“You are the bows from your children as living arrows are sent forth’ Kahul Gibran.”

39/52

Living Arrows 39 Living Arrows 39/52

living arrows Living Arrows 39/52

practising simplicity Living Arrows 39/52
Point+Shoot Living Arrows 39/52

HOSTING: The Week That Was; Captured (#65)

Hello!  Welcome to “The Week That Was; Captured”.  I am hosting for the next three weeks, as Hannah got married yesterday!  Congratulations hunny,  I cannot wait to see the pictures!

“The rules are simple; link up one post about your week! It can be photographed, Instagrammed, written, videoed… basically in any format you wish! This linky is about capturing memories and I treat it a bit like an online diary. Please only link up relevant posts. Also, if you fancy commenting on other people’s posts that would be super too – everyone loves a comment!” (Hannah’s words!)

So while Hannah was making the last minute preparations for her wedding, we were having a mixed week.

Our Week

OWTW 1024x811 HOSTING: The Week That Was; Captured (#65)

  1. Sunday – After a chilled out morning at home, I took Baby out for a car nap and then we met Mr Hubby for lunch at Pizza Hut (as they don’t mind screaming kids!).  Baby was a nightmare and we soon wished we hadn’t bothered!  We went to a little park on the way home, but Baby wasn’t feeling it.
  2. Monday – We met our friends Z and D in the local Cake Boutique, although we (Z and I) resisted cake.  We had a little wander round TK Maxx and I bought Baby a fab dress.  You can get such great things in there, but it can be hit and miss.  In the evening it was my first french night school class.
  3. Tuesday –  We went swimming first thing.  Baby did a tiny bit of solo swimming, so proud.  After the daily car nap, we went for a lovely walk and almost got chased by a cow!
  4. Wednesday – We went into town, as I wanted to get Baby these adorable shoes from Marks and Spencer, but they didn’t  have any left.  Booooo!  So we wandered down the canal to see our mates, the swans and then had a play in the playground.
  5. Thursday – Baby and I went to Primark to stock up on bits, like socks and tights for her.  I can never believe the bargains in there.  She is now fully stocked with socks! (20 new pairs!).  I found out the blog has gone up to 114 in the Tots100 rankings!  So happy and very grateful.
  6. Friday – I had a Doctor’s appointment first thing, so Mr Hubby stayed off to stay with Baby.  When I got back I had to label things we were hoping to sell at the NCT sale.  Mr Hubby took Baby downstairs and she fell, hitting her face on a table.  She bled everywhere, poor Baby.  So the rest of the day was spent at the Doctors, Emergency Dentist and having lots of cuddles with Mummy and Daddy.  I didn’t take a single photo, which is unheard of!
  7. Saturday – I had an pre sale shop at the NCT sale (post next week).  Mr Hubby went to drop off our sale things early.  We met him there, and I had my early shop.   I got lots of bargains for Baby and with what we sold, we were up on the day!  Result!  Baby’s face was very swollen today and she was still quite emotional.

So that’s our week captured.  What have you got up to this week? x

twtwc badge HOSTING: The Week That Was; Captured (#65)

If you enjoy my posts, why not
 HOSTING: The Week That Was; Captured (#65)

Silent Sunday 28th September 2014

Silent Sunday1 Silent Sunday 28th September 2014

Silent Sunday Silent Sunday 28th September 2014

Sundaylge e1396359989177 Silent Sunday 28th September 2014

If you enjoy my posts, why not
 Silent Sunday 28th September 2014

 

 

Word of the Week #37

It is time for me to link up with the lovely Jocelyn from The Reading Residence to share my Word of the Week #WotW.

This week my word is

rollercoaster Word of the Week #37

Our week had a bit of a bleugh start.  Our TV broke a couple of weeks ago, this week our oven and Baby’s pram broke!  Unfortunately, we are not in a position to replace any of them at the moment.  Things always break in groups don’t they?!  I have been increasingly depressed about my weight and have been waiting for a few months for some products from a company that agreed to help.  This week, however, they emailed to say they are pulling blogger trials, which is really upsetting.  Especially as I have waited for them for months.

Then in a change of fortune, on Thursday night the new TOTS100 rankings were released and I have risen to 114!  I know not everyone likes rankings such as this, but for me it is a mark of how well my blog is doing.  I am so pleased and grateful to be this rank, after only one year of blogging.

Friday saw Mr Hubby at home with us.  He had just taken Baby downstairs for a drink, when she climbed on her little foot stool and fell off, face first into the telephone table.  Cue screaming and blood everywhere.  I walked her quickly to the Doctor’s, as it is just round the corner.  The nurse checked her, but advised that we take her to the emergency dentist.  Mr Hubby took over and drove her down there.  There is a big cut behind her front teeth and lots of swelling.  I think one of her front teeth is less straight that it was before, but the Dentist said that none were wobbly.  Bless my little Baby, it was so stressful to see the blood pouring out of her mouth, with her looking so scared.  She is now a little brighter, but still a quite subdued which I think due to the shock.

On a positive note, Mr Hubby is off for four more days now, which makes Baby and I happy!

Which word would sum up your week?

Enjoy my posts? Why not

 Word of the Week #37

 wotw Word of the Week #37

Why not check out my previous words.

I am also linking with #PoCoLo over at Verily Victoria Vocialises,

and Clairejustine’s

welcome to the weekend Word of the Week #37

*Original Image: The Crypt

The Great Cereal Theft (Eat Natural)

O.K I have a confession….. I love cereal!  I have said many times before, but if it weren’t for Mr Hubby (who cooks), I would live on cereal.  My favourite cereal treats being Muesli and Granola.  We were recently sent some breakfast products from Eat Natural; I was really looking forward to trying them, as I really enjoy their macadamia nut bars.

We received the Toasted Muesli Buckwheat and the Toasted Muesli Vine Fruit.

Toasted Muesli  1024x608 The Great Cereal Theft (Eat Natural)

Gluten free!

Vine Fruit 1024x627 The Great Cereal Theft (Eat Natural)

I normally do a little blogging at breakfast, while Baby is occupied.  So I got everything ready and then this happened……

Eat natural 1 1024x399 The Great Cereal Theft (Eat Natural)

After taking my eyes off her for just a second….. she tried to help herself!

Eat natural 3 1024x613 The Great Cereal Theft (Eat Natural)

Although I was a little miffed that Baby tried to steal my muesli, I wasn’t worried about her eating it.  All the ingredients are healthy and natural, with no added nasties, which is peace of mind when your little one scoffs it all!.

I We enjoyed both mueslis and we will definitely be getting them again in the future.

 

Disclosure: We were invited to take part in a blogger competition and were sent the muesli in order to review it. 

However, all opinions are my (and Baby’s!) own and are 100% honest.