Monthly Archives: April 2013

Bake For Bumps!

If you love cake (like me!) enjoy baking and fancy doing something fabulous to raise money for a marvellous charity how about taking part in Bake for Bumps in aid of Sparks. Bake for Bumps will take place 17th – 19th May and hopefully they will raise lots of money for Sparks which are a charity supporting children’s health – did you know that each year in the UK over 3000 babies die before their 1st birthday? Sparks help to fund lifesaving research, and your bake sale could help fund research and ultimately save a life. Whether you hold your sale at work, home or maybe a club, why not doing something fantastic and plan one today?


A new era..

Between the school runs, play dates, and endless washing (seriously how do two small children manage to create so much?!) I have found myself really enjoying life the last few weeks, hence I’ve neglected the blog.. Since December I’ve felt in a bit of a rut, rather unhappy I’ve struggled to see the bright side of life and the miserable cold weather certainly didn’t help my mood! The first signs of sunshine spelt a new era, and I have found a new energy and confidence! I’ve been cavorting around the country visiting friends, exercising, gardening and even (whispers) cleaning! Now don’t get thinking I’ve become a domestic goddess over night, that is simply untrue – I still can’t cook, although I have managed to perfect some simple baking skills..I am now truly one of those women who when stressed bakes! 
 I have to confess, I had a break through with my diet after reading the book Beyond Temptation, it addresses over-eating and unhealthy relationships with food which I undoutedbly have. Yes I am that woman who buys a large pack of cream eclairs and having opened them to have one with my coffee, I then end up eating the entire pack to conceal the evidence that I have had one at all.. The book doesn’t make excuses, doesn’t make promises that you will weight, but DOES help you deal with issues around why you starve all day and then binge at night, or punish yourself for having that ice cream at the beach. I’ve still got a long way to go, but I’ve stopped feeling guilty when I decide I want a desert as I fancy it (and I’ve stopped referring to it as “a treat”). 
So, life is good and I’m training for a 5k with my lovely friend Ani who will undoubtedly shame me with her speed around the course! I’ve had a sneeky chat with a personal trainer and he’s given me exercises which I can do at home in front of the tv..perfect for the lazy girl in me!

Ms G xx


Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of Beyond Temptation free of charge, the link is NOT affiliate. All thoughts about the book are my own based on my experiences using the book for the last 8weeks.

Roll on Summer!

The spring sunshine has caused a flurry of colour, bright yellow daffodils and beautiful primroses cover my garden and lift my spirits. I feel hopeful that summer is truly on its way, I look forward to long evening walks, the smell of freshly cut grass and of course..the Pimms! Are you looking forward to summer?

Primroses

Ms G xx

Floating our way through retirement.

 At the weekend we held a film night thanks to Age UK, the aim of the evening was to think about how much we’d thought about Travel and contents insurance, which I have to confess is something I hadn’t thought of at all until now! We were sent a DVD and a takeaway voucher to fuel our discussions!




We sat down to watch the film UP, which in my mind is the perfect retirement adventure – fulfilling a childhood dream is in my mind the perfect adventure, and even better when you then discover you can start a whole NEW adventure! We were asked to think about the following questions, I’ve answered them honestly and included extracts from friends to!

·         What is your best “family holiday” memory? 

My favourite holiday memory has to be running along a sandy beach my feet almost being burnt under the hot sand to get an ice cream from the ice cream hut on the edge of the beach. It was always my Dad who’d take me to get the ice cream, and they used to use fresh fruit to make the ice cream more or less in front of you! 

 
·         When was the last time you spend quality time with your parents/grandparents?

My Grandparents died when I was very young, so I try to make sure my children get plenty of time with their grandparents – at least once a week. I would spend a lot more time with my parents if I could, I think I’m still a Daddy’s girl at heart and love sitting putting the world to rights with him. Mr G visits his family once a week for a cup of tea and a chat. The girls also make time for spending time with their parents and Grandparents too – what a nice lot we are!

·         Are you aware of the benefits and help that Age UK can provide to families who travel with family members over 60?

Honestly, we were all a bit clueless about travel insurance for over 60’s, we were hopeful of what might be covered but had no idea! I was interested to read that pre-existing medical conditions can often be covered, and that Age UK cover children under 18 travelling on this policy for free (see the t&c’s)

·         Have you thought where would you like to spend your last days of retirement? Anywhere exotic?

My friend Ani wants to live a rebellious life, no where exotic but doing all the things you might expect an out of control teenager to be doing (so I have been warned I may be expected to recover her and her mobility scooter from the police station..) Claire suggested she’d like a more exotic lifestyle and would be touring Vietnam for as long as her legs were able! Mr G and I have plans to spend our time on a barge getting away from it all somewhere on a canal but still with the home comforts of a good cup of tea! This barge in Birmingham inspired us!

A Barge in Birmingham

·         When was the last time you visit your parents’ house?  

Happily we could all answer that we had been to visit our parents’ within the last week or two.

·         How much do you know about home insurance for people over 60?  

I personally assumed it would be the same as anyone else it’s not something most of us had discussed with our parents or grandparents so it was interesting to discuss any potential issues. My friend Ani suggested that perhaps premiums were more expensive, due to having specialist mobility equipment?

If you are as clueless as us on these important matters, have a read up on Age UK, and why not let me know what you’re planning to do in your retirement years?  


#WIN a copy of Prima Princessa Presents Sleeping Beauty!

Prima Princessa DVD’s are aimed at children aged 3-6 and aim to introduce children to the delights of ballet! It’s been created by Mum’s with the help of some of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world! Check out the trailer here:

The Prima Princessa DVD’s are available from Amazon now, or you can enter for your chance to WIN a copy of the fabulous Prima Princessa Presents Sleeping Beauty, featuring the Royal Ballet by answering the simple question below!

What costume do Ballerina’s traditionally wear on stage?

a) Wellington Boots

b) A Tutu

c) A Cycling Helmet

Please leave your answer as a comment, you MUST leave either a twitter ID or email address in your comment so I can contact you if you win.

T&C’s

One Entrant Per Household.
UK Entrants ONLY (sorry!)
No third party or automated entries.
Only entrants who correctly answer the mandatory question will be eligible to win.
There is ONE prize of 1 Prima Princessa DVD.
Winner will be required to respond within 72 hours of winning notification or a new winner will be selected.
Winner’s details will be passed to Prima Princessa for prize fulfilment.
Winner will be selected at random.
Competition Closes midnight 27th April 2013.

 

ThePrizeFinder – UK Competitions

I’m a swinging! #MagpieMonday

We’re in the process of sorting our house out and making it beautiful rather than just a living space, and as I’m sure some of you already know this is the perfect excuse to indulge in a little thrifty shopping! This weekend has been full of practical purchases such as some huge new bean bags which due to their colour have gained the unfortunate nickname from Boo of “the boobies..” (in honesty they do resemble boobies, but I hadn’t noticed that when I bought them.. so I need to dye the covers!).

Amongst the practical purchases, Imagine my delight when I came across this Swing-A-Way Ice Crusher in original box, admittedly I have no intention of ever using it as an ice crusher (unless I can make home made slush puppies?? – answers on a postcard please?).

When I opened the box (after getting it safely home – yes I know I should have checked the box BEFORE buying it..but it was £1!!) I was amazed to discover that it’s actually never been used! I love the retro box, so I’m trying to work out how to display my new kitchenalia without wrecking the box in the sunlight – any ideas?
 

Linking up with Missie Lizzie for Magpie Monday, have you found any terrific thrifty finds?
Me and My Shadow

Joolz Nursery Bag Review

The Joolz Nursery bag is made to fit perfectly with the Joolz buggies, they have even designed a space on the chassis for it to hang from, now, I don’t have a Joolz buggy ( although it’s on my wish list if we have another baby!) but was very pleased to get the opportunity to try the nursery bag out. The bag is made of a real nice strong fabric, and the lining is really soft.

 
 The bag is a great size and ideal for storing everything you need for a day out, it’s big enough that I could carry a change of clothes for the boys when we went out for the day – I suspected and was quite right that they’d get covered in chocolate…! Anyway, there are two main compartments and plenty of little inner pockets for storing everything you need for your little one (and yourself!).


 There is a handy change mat included which folds easily into the spacious bag, it is nice sized mat and perfect for nappy changes on the go! I also like the two bottle holders at either end of the bag, whether you need to carry baby bottles, toddler cups or a bottle of water for yourself they’re a really good size, and are thermal lined so will keep drinks warm or cool!

The logo on the bottle holder at one end of the bag is the only obvious branding on the bag, I especially like the minimal branding by Joolz!The nursery bag has been great for carrying around all our toddler bits and pieces and I would say it’d be fabulous for anyone with a newborn!

You can keep up to date with everything Joolz on their face book page here.

Easter fun in the sun.

 Our Easter Sunday was spent at the National Trust Easter Egg trail at Foxbury in the New Forest. With plenty of fresh air, easy to walk paths (we saw a few families with pushchairs) and lots to learn about how the National Trust are attempting to restore this area to heathland by removing invading trees and plants it was a really great day out for all the family.






Boo couldn’t wait to have a go at toasting a marshmallow, the lady carefully showed him what to do and he said it tasted fabulous!








There was a falconry display on a bit later in the day, which sadly we couldn’t stay for, but we still caught a glimpse of some amazing birds of prey including a huge Owl and this beautiful falcon. 




At the end of the egg trail, we were rewarded with a fabulous chocolate egg – a very good sized one! The boys (and us) were delighted, and all the volunteers were very friendly checking that we’d managed to see the birds of prey and have a go at the activities. It was superb! A great value event to as it cost £3 to participate in the trail, under 5’s went free (although we paid for Boo unwittingly before we realised that).

The combination of excitement of following the trail, the chocolate egg eating and all the fresh air had a wonderful effect on the children.. 

A huge thumbs up to the National Trust for a marvellous event, we’re already looking forward to next year!