Thursday, 15 January 2015

On getting organised

I've been trying to organise my house for the last 6 months, but the mess seems to build up faster than I can clear it. The kitchen is a huge problem area as it tends to collect paperwork and kids craft supplies as well as the usual gadgets that never get used, lunch bags and never ending washing up.  In an effort to really sort it out we cleared out the whole room and painted it just before Christmas, but slowly the clutter has started to build up again, especially around the craft area.

I like to have craft supplies on hand for the kids to use whenever they want, but inevitably that does lead to a degree of mess and disorganisation.

I really want to keep our craft supplies accessible as my girls do love to 'make'. Just last weekend my 6 year old made herself some skis from a cardboard box, which I thought were genius and I'd really miss their little creations if they stopped making them.

Even my little boy gets involved, although his projects generally involve either a big stick or some kind of shooting device like this catapult.

My aim for the next few weeks is to sort out our craft supply area once and for all. There are some AMAZING ideas on Pinterest and I am totally in awe of the organisational skills some people have. I would LOVE the craft corner of my kitchen to look like one of these. I especially adore the one with the blackboard and the roll of paper.

Do you have a problem area in your house? What would your dream solution be? How do you organise your craft supplies?

This is an advertorial post

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Saturday, 3 January 2015

How to make Story Stones

Story stones are great for inspiring imagination and helping children come up with ideas for stories. We made our own mini version by painting stones and drawing on them.

I used permanent pens so the pictures showed up brightly.

What do you think?

My girls spent ages making up stories together, although most did involve the duck eating the girl, so I think we need to add a few more.
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Wednesday, 31 December 2014

A Winter of Sports

Somehow we've ended up being one of those families that does too much, over scheduled kids, a messy house and stressed out parents. I never thought I'd be THAT parent, the one that comes across as pushy, with a child who seemingly does everything, but it just sort of happened. Two of my children train with the local gymnastics squad doing 5 and 3 hours a week each, all three do swimming lessons, and Z ( the over scheduled one ) also does after school hockey, badminton and rugby as well as learning the oboe. I didn't intend for him to do so much. Gymnastics and Swimming are the ones I feel are very important and he choses to do the rest. Until October this year it all seemed manageble as I'd purposly kept Sunday completely free for chilling out, catching up on homework or meeting friends, but then Z asked if he could start rugby, which is 3 hours on a Sunday morning. I just could't say no, but really struggle with our decision to let him do it, as it impacts our weekends so much. Saturday morning is completely taken up with swimming so we don't have a full day all together any more. My husband now coaches at rugby too, leaving me and the girls abandoned for the morning. We've been trying to make the most of the time, going to the park, skating, having crafty mornings, but it's not quite the same as all being together.

Weekends away like this trip to Cornwall have become a rarity because missing SEVEN different classes is expensive.

My husband also plays rugby on a Thursday evening and squash a couple of times a week in the evening, meaning I'm often left to my own devices, so end up working or watching rubbish on the TV. One of my aims for next year is to spend more time looking after myself, so this Pamper Parcel was the perfect Christmas gift to get me started, especially as I'll be on my own even more once tennis season starts.

I used the fancy popcorn and chocolate for my husbands Christmas stocking, but I know he'll be happy to share, and have already enjoyed a lovely relaxing bath with the bath bomb and can't wait to get an evening to myself to try out the AromaWorks candle.

The Pamper Parcel was a really lovely gift to receive, as I don't often get such luxurious treats for myself.

What resolutions and hopes do you have for next year?

Betfair kindly sent me the Pamper Parcel
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Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Easy Candy Cane Christmas Cards

What do you think of our easy candy cane Christmas cards?

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Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Easy gingerbread house

What do you think of our mini gingerbread houses?

These were so easy to make, just bake a thin sheet of gingerbread and cut square and rectangle shapes while the biscuit is still warm and soft.

Decorate with icing sugar and sweets.

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Thursday, 6 November 2014

Can you rescue a cat this Christmas?

We don't have any pets, but I know my children would love a dog. I am tempted, but right now, I'm not sure we have time to look after an animal properly. Have you ever bought a pet for Christmas? this guest post tells you all you need to know.

Christmas is a perfect time to take a few moments out to think about how lucky we actually are. Although some might think that commercialisation and 'me' culture can be shown at their worst during the festive season, many people actually embrace the opposite.

A sense of compassion and considering others less fortunate than themselves plays a big part at this time of year but it isn't just other people who can benefit from; dogs, cats and various other animals in rescue centres can end up finding themselves in a brand new loving home just in time for Christmas.

Should I rescue an animal?

If you want to do some good this Christmas then you may want to consider rescuing an animal. If you think a dog will be too much hard work for your schedule and you won’t be able to dedicate enough time or space to them then why not consider a cat?

Cats are far more flexible when it comes to domestic living arrangements and this is why adopting a kitten or older animal from a cat rescue centre can be a perfect idea at any time of year, but especially so at Christmas.

Charities such as the RSPCA have thousands of cats and kittens that need rehoming so why not take a look at the animals in their care and see if you could offer one of them the chance of happiness.

Life changing

For people of all ages, having a cat can be a life changing experience. The Animal Hero Awards which is joint run by the RSPCA and The Daily Mirror highlights many different cases where pets can play a far greater role than might otherwise be expected.

Usually, dogs and cats bring joy and companionship to young and old alike. They can be entertaining and amusing as easily as they are comforting and cuddly but some of them are real heroes and heroines who go above the call of duty to look after their owners and improve their lives.

Being able to give a cat of any age a new chance of happiness by taking them into your home can be a wonderful way to really join in with the true spirit of Christmas and become a hero yourself.


Of course, taking on the role of caring for any animal is a commitment that should not be entered into lightly. Getting a cat for Christmas can be a wonderful present for all the family but it isn't one that can be taken back after Boxing Day and traded in for something else.

The joy that adopting a rescue cat can bring easily outweighs any extra responsibilities that come with them. As long as it is given careful thought and attention is given to the animal’s needs and requirements, taking a cat into your home is something that could make this Christmas a truly special one to remember. You can find more information about cat rehoming and adoption with the RSPCA.

This is a collaborative post
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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Easy carve pumpkins

I'm a bit late sharing our pumpkins this year, we didn't have a lot of time, so my rabbit was a bit rushed, but luckily we have a very patient and artistic uncle who made the very cool spider.

What pumpkins did you make this year?

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