The MAD Blog Awards are going on right now, I've just snuck away for a few minutes to come and collect my thoughts. You see the most amazing thing happened. Something that I really didn't expect and something that has left me grinning wildly.
Friday, 30 September 2011
The MAD Blog Awards are going on right now, I've just snuck away for a few minutes to come and collect my thoughts. You see the most amazing thing happened. Something that I really didn't expect and something that has left me grinning wildly.
Right about now I should be on a train going to London if everything is going the way I have planned. I have been lucky enough to have been nominated again for the Family Fun Category in the MAD awards, which are being held at the Talk Talk Customer Experience Centre. I've been dressed by Simply Be, and the lovely Vertbaudet (who are sending me some baby clothes for my Sister) have sponsored me in order so I could afford to come stay down in London (and to have a sneaky packet of crisps and bottle of Dr Pepper to enjoy whilst on the train) and I'm really excited to be going to find out if I shall be increasing the number of trophies on my fireplace.
No seriously, for me this isn't about trophies or prizes and it isn't even about winning. The very fact that I was nominated and then voted for by people who read this blog is just so amazing that it makes my head hurt thinking about it. What started as a diary of things I wanted to remember in years to come and share with those who were experiencing similar things has evolved into something more. I've met some amazing people who I now consider to be my gang of friends (Hello Emma, Jen, Sally, and Vic) and even more who I hope are well on their way to being firm friends of mine (Hello Nicki and Melaina).
This blog has allowed my children to experience things that I could only dream about when I was their age. They get to try new toys and DVD's before they are available to buy, they have been to theme parks, tried new dishes, been given clothes, learnt a few new skills, made friends across the country and met a few celebrities too. The confidence that my children have now when trying something new is amazing, I wish I had been that self assured when I was that young.
I was talking to Emma the other day about a comment that someone who knows me in "real life" had made about my blog. The gist of it was that I am a normal person blogging about normal things and it struck me as funny. Granted, the things we do as a family are what every normal family do (or should do), but I don't think that is an accurate description of me and my family or my blog! Anyone who has read at least one blog post of mine can tell I am far from normal and I don't blog about normal things either, but to me and my family it is normal because this is our family life.
Tonight I will get to spend time with other bloggers and we will celebrate with each other. If I win my category great. And if I don't then it doesn't change anything my blog is and always will be about my "normal" family life and the fun we have together.
PS If you want to follow along then follow the live blog at www.the-mads.com/blog
At the start of the school term Top Ender and I agreed that every Friday and on special days I would prepare a special lunch for her to take to school. I looked at it as a chance for me to show Top Ender how much I loved her, that I was thinking of her when we weren't together at home, a chance for me to be creative and also if it was only once a week then it wasn't going to cause too much issue and Daddy and I could just slap dash her lunch together on every other day of the week! The problem came when term started and the first day back to school (which was a special day) was a Wednesday. So a special lunch was created for Top Ender to take in on her first day. It was a fish because Top Ender had been working on a Sea Creature Summer project which was the theme for the first few weeks back at School too.
Of course that first Thursday at School was a special day, seeing as it was the first Thursday at School and so I had to prepare a special lunch on that day too
Thursday, 29 September 2011
We love watching classic cartoons here at A Mothers Ramblings, in fact in the future I am only going to allow Top Ender and Big Boy to date people who also appreciate the classic cartoons of the past. Something that we love watching is Tom and Jerry, I remember watching the same episodes when I was a child that Top Ender and Big Boy watch on a Sunday morning with Daddy now. There is something reassuring about them watching the same things that we watched (Daddy also spent his youth watching Tom and Jerry cartoons) and when I was asked if I would like to review the new Tom and Jerry film I was almost beside myself with excitement.
So the DVD came and we thought the only way to watch it would be on our big screen. We sat down on a Sunday afternoon and started to watch. I don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't this film. The Tom and Jerry & The Wizard of Oz is fantastic and will be a classic in no time at all. Imagine the Wizard of Oz story that we all know and love, but with the added addition of Tom and Jerry helping Dorothy out. There are a few "extra" scenes from the original film, but the story is so faithful and even the smallest details have been taken into account and I couldn't find fault with this film.
Luckily I'm not the only one who gets to enjoy this fantastic DVD as I have another to give away to one UK Resident. Leave a comment on this post before 3pm on the 6th October 2011 letting me know which childhood classic film you love and I will randomly draw a winner.
The idea of the game is really simple, see the little highlighted box on the right of the picture there? That's Wildmutt and in the main part of the screen it is your job to tap every Wildmutt you can see. When you have done that the highlighted box Wildmutt will change to another Ben 10 Alien and you have to hit all of those and so on.
Wednesday, 28 September 2011
Vileda gave me a 1 2 spray mop to review
When Vileda asked if I would like to try the 1 2 Spray mop , I knew that my answer should be yes. I think everyone has heard of Vileda and knows that their products are well made. The problem was by the time the 1 2 Spray mop arrived I already had three mops (thanks to well meaning relatives) and so I offered to give away the new 1 2 Spray mop to Neighbour Mum. She of course said yes as she knew that Vileda was a great brand but on the one condition that I come and mop her kitchen and dining room floor for her the first time. I willingly agreed after all how could I review the 1 2 Spray mop if I didn't use it?
The 1 2 Spray mop is really easy to put together, (with it coming apart easily when I realised I had put it together wrongly) and is a good length pole which was great as Neighbour Mum's kitchen and dining room was soon whizzed round and under units and dining table were also given a once over. The spray part of the 1 2 Spray Mop is really useful and we talked about how it would be great just to give a squirt under a baby's high chair and a quick mop over, or how you wouldn't have to take a bucket to the bathroom as the cleaning product is already part of the mop.
The cleaning product that comes with it is a solution made by Vileda, but if you didn't like it you could just as easily use something else. I did like it though, as it gave the floor a great shine, removed a couple of stains and when Top Ender went running over the area I had just cleaned she didn't slip and fall. The smell wasn't over powering, but it did smell clean, which is always good when cleaning! You work the spray by pulling a small lever in the handle, a bit like when you brake on a bike and it is easy to do one handed, I must admit that I did think it was quite fun and may have used more of the cleaning product than was strictly necessary. As I left Neighbour Mum was explaining to her sons, that this was very serious business and that if they wanted to have a go then they had to make a commitment to clean the floor regularly as this wasn't a toy. I thought that it was great, because if a 5 year old and a 7 year old can use it then it has to be easy to use for everybody. I mean look at this video, it is so easy to use!
The 1 2 Spray mop costs £24.99, and that is without a bucket (with a wringer suitable for this mop head costing £7.49) or a replacement pad (£5.99) but but I don't think that for the sort of floor cleaning that I or Neighbour Mum do they are really needed. If you are using the spray system then you won't need to wring the head out, and it isn't that hard to just throw the pad into the washing machine so it is washed and ready to go before you next use it, I mean you could even use it straight from the machine if you wanted! Yes, this mop is at the higher end of prices, but I think that for the ease of use and the simplicity of it that this is a good price and will last for ages.
A while back I was sent an advanced copy of the new Humf DVD, Humf and The Fluffy Thing. Due to life getting in the way though I didn't get a chance to write down here about the DVD which is a shame because I love Humf and the DVD is fantastic fun. When Big Boy and I first started to watch the cartoon I am pretty sure that he just humoured me and watched it because I wanted to but he soon became enamoured with the little purple furry thing and we made it part of our routine to have a cuddle on the sofa, have a snack and watch Humf.
That is what I love about Humf, he is perfectly family viewing. Humf and his Mum and Dad, and Uncle Hairy are characters that you can identify with. You can see parts of your life or at least I can see parts of mine!
The DVD contains some of our favourite episodes and so that we can share it with our friends we have one to give away thanks to HIT Entertainment! To enter all you have to do is leave a comment below telling me which Cartoon Character you most identify with!
Winners will be randomly selected on the 5th October at 3pm and I'm afraid this is for UK residents only.
This week the gallery theme is home.
My home isn't all that I want it to be.
I mean the carpets aren't what I would have chosen (but there is nothing wrong with them and I can't afford to replace them just because I don't like them).
The central heating was put in after the house was built and so there are pipes all along my walls making it a dust trap.
The kitchen is country style and I'm much more of a stainless steal and shiny black kind of girl.
The bathroom is tiny. And the tiles are horrid. And they aren't put up right.
My bedroom is only half painted.
The garage is falling down and probably has asbestos in the ceiling.
Next door got permission from a former owner to put a waste pipe into our waste pipe at a stupid angle that causes my toilet to block up roughly once every two years.
The garden is over growing and old fashioned.
The last few fence panels at the back of the garden need replacing.
The Kitchen roof needs replacing.
The window next to the front door wobbles when you shut the front door.
There is a loose floorboard in my bedroom.
The wallpaper in my built in wardrobe is terrible.
There aren't enough sockets in any of the rooms.
There are cracks in the walls and ceilings.
The bathroom is downstairs instead of upstairs.
The driveway is at an angle so steep I'm worried my hand break will give up and one morning I will come down stairs to find my car in my living room.
The light in the hallway is in the wrong place and so doesn't light up the hallway.
No matter how many times I weed there are always more weeds.
Next door don't seem to understand that when they drop rubbish in their garden it will blow into mine. I know it's not mine as nobody in my house drinks alcohol.
My home isn't all that I want it to be and yet it is still my home because home is where ever my family is.
My Nieces, Top Ender and Big Boy got to meet the Zingzillas at Harveys Furniture store this past weekend. Apparently it doesn't get much better than this and Auntie kitty and I were pretty chuffed to meet them too!
Monday, 26 September 2011
The other weekend we were travelling home in the car, from a fun filled family day out, when Top Ender said in a quiet little voice;
"Mummy? Do you know why I was crying a few minutes ago?"
I didn't. In fact, I didn't even know that she had been crying. She explained that she had been thinking about Nanny Maw (my Maternal Grandmother who died on Top Ender's Fifth Birthday) and about how she didn't spend enough time with her when she was alive. This broke my heart, as a seven year old shouldn't be suffering from guilt over the time not spent with someone whilst they were alive. In fact nobody should be judged over the time that they did or didn't spend with relatives or friends whilst they were alive.
I tried to put Top Ender's mind to rest with the a promise of a big hug when we got home and then I started telling her stories about Nanny Maw that soon had us both giggling again, but as I sat in the front of the car in the dark I started to cry again. Crying for the loss of someone I loved and for the loss of innocence of a young girl who learnt about death far too soon.
When we got home, I cuddled Top Ender on the sofa and after a few minutes gently broached the subject again. I wanted to let her know that sometimes when someone dies we wish we had done things differently, that we had told them how much they meant to us or had seen them more often but that no matter what the times that we had shared together were the important times and it was those that we should remember. I wasn't prepared for this though, how can I tell Top Ender that everything she is feeling is what I am feeling too?
I don't have any major words of wisdom, I don't have a magic wand that I can wave that can give Top Ender and I one more conversation with Nanny Maw. All I have is my love for my daughter and I hope that it is enough to take away the guilt that she wrongly feels.
I spoke to a wise woman earlier this evening, she told me that wishing we could take away the hurt in one swoop wasn't a wise idea because we have to process these emotions, to understand our feelings and although it hurts, when we come out the other side we are stronger for it. That wise woman is dealing with her own hurt right now, but she gives me hope that the hurt and guilt that we feel over the death of loved ones will one day not hurt quite so much.
"Stop standing on my foot (said behind a smile)" from Mum in the Madhouse
"Shit, who invited the stripper from my stag night?" from Crystal Jigsaw
"Did someone just say we'd have two children? They're joking, right?" from Rosie Scribble
"The groom forced a smile as his new bride just announced her mother was moving in!" from Emmy's Mummy
Congratulations Clare (aka Emmy's Mummy) I'll be in touch to get your address details so we can send out your prize. I hope that you enjoy hugging Tatty Puppy as much as I will once I have stolen him back from Daddy!
Friday, 23 September 2011
I would do anything for my family and they know it. In fact when I do the weekly shopping list, I go through all the things we need (bread, milk, cheese etc) and then the things that they would like (crisps, biscuits, chocolate spread, Pepsi) and then the things I would like (Dr Pepper and more Dr Pepper). And then when I realise that the shopping is coming to more than I have budgeted for I take off what I would like (Bye Dr Pepper) then what Daddy would like (Bye Pepsi) and normally that brings us back to our budget.
I'm not alone, according to some research that was in an email sent to me 90% of people do the same thing and make cut backs on the things they want in order to provide for the family. This is why when supermarkets such as Tesco have a Baby Bargains event (it's happening now and will end the 2nd October) I think it's a good idea to stock up on the basics. In fact my sister who will have her Baby this January has been stocking up on things like Johnsons Toiletries, wet wipes and a few packs of Nappies to make the most of the savings offered.
The problem is everyone deserves a treat now and again and so when Tesco asked if I would like to give away £100 in Tesco vouchers to one lucky reader to treat themselves with in honour of the Baby Bargains event and my Tenth Wedding Anniversary I thought what a fab idea. So if you are in the UK and you want to enter the draw to win £100 of Tesco Vouchers let me know in the comments what you would do to treat yourself with the Tesco vouchers and I shall draw a winner on my wedding anniversary (29th September) at 3pm.
|I can't say if your £100 will look like this, but this is what the voucher I got for my husband for our wedding anniversary looks like.|
Thursday, 22 September 2011
Yesterday for my Wordless Wednesday post, I posted this picture.
These are tin can tealight holders which I am giving to Daddy for our Tenth Wedding Anniversary next Thursday. I thought it rather apt because the tenth wedding anniversary is marked with a gift of tin and I've ten of them (four of them are hiding as Daddy needs a bit of a surprise right?). I had originally seen Tea Lights Holders similar to this on Pinterest and really wanted to make my own and so here is how to do it.
First of all do the world a favour and save some tin cans from being recycled into more tin cans. Make sure you really clean them up inside and out as you need to remove the label and the sticky glue and any traces of food from inside the tin. I ended up soaking mine in the sink over night and using a bit of WD40 on the sticky glue bit! If you end up using the WD40 too then make sure to really clean it all off as it will effect a later step.
Once they are all dry fill the tin cans with sand and then add water before putting them in the freezer. The sand allows the water in the tin cans to freeze but not to lose shape. You will use more sand than you think as you will need to compress the sand down like when you are building a sandcastle. I wasn't sure how long it would take for the cans to freeze and so I left mine for 24 hours. This was way longer than needed though, as they only took a couple of hours really. I had decided to go with a few different designs on my tin cans as I am hoping to use them at different times of the year and not just in the summer. I drew my designs on to greaseproof paper and then wrapped the paper around the can. I found that the tighter the paper around the can the easier it was to hammer our the design. The towel by the way was to protect my bunkers/work surfaces!
All you have to do is gently hammer a nail into the can around your sketch. I found that it was simple shapes that worked best and I think the double hearts and the stars look the most delightful twinkling away. I did think that I would have to work quickly because I was worried that the cans were going to defrost before I had finished, but as you can see from the next picture they were still very frozen.
I let the cans defrost in the sink and then gave them a good wash and let them dry before spraying the inside with a white aerosol paint can. The white paint is best as it reflects the light from the candles, and I think it looks neater too.
There are three points to this painting stage. The first being wear gloves when doing this as aerosol paint suitable for outdoor use is a pain to get off. The second thing always spray the can down wind of you, I learnt this after the first spray in the first can and let nothing more be said of this. The last point is spray paint smells good, but don't sniff it because that is bad.
After the insides were dry I spray painted the outside. Daddy had brought me blue and green to go with our garden (green and brown would have been better!) and so a few coats later we ended up with these! It was too late to respray the insides, but they needed it from where the outside had bled a little over the lip of the cans and so I sprayed them again a couple of days later.
Wednesday, 21 September 2011
Tuesday, 20 September 2011
The chocolate one was a firm favourite with Daddy who claimed that it was very similar to a popular luxury ice cream and a fraction of the price if it costs less than £5 for an Angel Delight Ice Cream powder mix packet! Keep an eye out on the Facebook page for news of when it will be available because this is one treat you will want to keep in the Kitchen cupboard.
Monday, 19 September 2011
In my Mind four weeks is a month, I know that this isn't strictly true but seeing as this is Week Four of Caption It Monday! Then I'm quite pleased. I think that the picture #3 which was of Daddy last week had you all a little puzzled as there weren't half as many abusive captions as I thought that you could come up with, or maybe I'm just more practised at abusing him?! Well, you get another go with this weeks picture and not only does the caption winner get some linky love, but they will also win a prize thanks to Carte Blanche Greetings (UK only). That's right real prizes this week!
You see a week on Thursday it will be my Tenth wedding anniversary. That's right, Daddy and I will have been married for Ten years and so this adorable little puppy will be given with love to my best friend... and then stolen back so I can keep him forever and ever because he is just so darn cute and soft. So keeping with the wedding anniversary theme here is the picture to caption...
As usual the caption that makes me laugh the most will be the winner and I will announce it next Monday, also look out for a review of Tatty Puppy in the next couple of days here.
And here is last week's offering.
"Sesame Street auditioning new cast members after the sacked Cookie Monster" which was from the fantastically funny Kat
Saturday, 17 September 2011
A tale of two backups!
We received an Hitachi Touro Mobile Pro external hard disk to review, which came with a free Hitachi Backup account.
In the "good old days", when photographs came from film and film came from the chemist, you were probably as selective as us when it came to taking a photograph. Nowadays, with the advent of digital photography, you probably take 4 digital shots for every 1 you would have taken on film. And why not.
Unlike photographs, which you might put in a frame or an album, you probably tend to store your digital photos on your computer. In fact, talking to Mummy, we worked out that - with the exception of a few documents - photo's make up the largest, irreplaceable, part of the data on our computer. Software and applications can be reinstalled, emails and blogs are all stored online - but our photos are not.
So, when Hitachi asked us to review their Touro Mobile Pro hard disk, and the "cloud" environment Hitachi Backup, we decided it was a good opportunity to make sure our treasured memories were in a safe place.
The two products are quite different, so I'll give you the rundown on what they do separately:
The Touro Mobile Pro hard disk is an external disk - it's about the third the size of a paperback book and half the thickness. It also weighs very little indeed, so it's ideal for portability on both fronts. It comes with a single (sadly proprietary on one end, so don't lose it!) USB cable - which when connected to your computer supplies both data and power. It's a USB3 device - which means it meets the latest speed standards. USB3 is not found in many computers yet, so fortunately it is backwardly compatible with earlier USB revisions - albeit the data won't transfer quite so fast.
The drive has 500Gb capacity - that's half a terabyte - not a huge amount of space in comparison to most internal disks, but certainly big enough for backups. Mummy and I have both had digital cameras for nearly 9 years, and more recently digital video cameras too, but a quick count of all the photos and videos we've taken in that time only came to 245Gb, so after backing it all up to the Touro Mobile Pro, we haven't even used 50%.
Installing it was easy - just plug it into a spare USB socket and it immediately appeared as a new drive. It's virtually silent in operation, and even after a few hours use, it barely registers any heat.
We found, rather than using any specific Backup software, it was just as easy to create a couple of folders - "Mummy's Photos" and "Daddy's Photos" - and then copy our folders of photos and videos into those. It took about an hour to copy the whole lot the first time, and we've set ourselves monthly calendar reminders to remember to keep the backup up to date. We're storing the disk away from home, and to be extra secure we don't delete the photos from our camera memory cards until we're sure it's on both the main PC and the Touro Mobile Pro.
Now, onto the Hitachi Backup service.
As a blogger who works from a number of devices - main PC, laptop, tablet, smartphone (and sometimes all of these at the same time!) it is very important for Mummy to be able to access photos, pictures, blog designs, blog ideas, her address book and other documents from wherever she is working.
Hitachi Cloud Backup is one of a number of "cloud based" services that allow you to centralise such data on remote servers, and then access them from multiple devices and locations. To encourage you to sign up, the Hitachi Backup software is included on the Touro Mobile Pro hard disk - you don't have to use Hitachi Backup in order to use the disk BUT you do need an Hitachi disk to allow you to sign up to Hitachi Cloud Backup - it's a service you can only use if you've bought an appropriate disk.
Installing the software was very easy - and I was able to install it on the main PC we all share, along with Mummy's laptop and my PC at work just by connecting the Touro Mobile Pro disk and running the installation. After signing up for an account, each of the locations appears as a separate folder.
I was able to configure the software to only backup certain folders - we have over 2 terabytes of data between these three computers which is far too much for the Backup service to hold - narrowing it down to just a few important document locations, and files we are working on right now (what we might call "work in progress") in as easy as a few clicks. Just as easy was telling it when to backup - instantly a file changes, or by a schedule. I set it to instantly, so I knew that once I'd worked on a document, it would straight away be accessible from my other devices.
There was no noticeable decrease in the speed of my computer whilst running the backup software, and as we have the luxury of a fast internet connection it took very little time to synchronise the folders we had selected to include.
A few other niceties - you can also access your files through a web browser, making for true usability on any internet connected device; it keeps at least 10 versions of the file (or up to 100 if you change a setting), so even if you delete or change the file you can always get the original back; you can select individual files to "share" with people - it will generate an email allowing your guest a one-time download of a file of your choice; there is an iPad and iPhone app available (with a caveat - see below).
Whilst we chose to use the Touro Mobile Pro drive and the Cloud Backup seperately, you can just as easily set them to backup the same files in the Hitachi Backup software - effectively giving you the files on disk when you're working away from home on your laptop, and the same files online if you choose to work from an internet cafe or your mobile phone.
The basic Hitachi Cloud Backup service offers 3Gb of storage for free. You can increase this to 250Gb for $49 a year (approx £30). It is a shame you can't have more than 250Gb - our photos alone would fill this in one go. You also need to be on the paid plan in order to get the aforementioned iPad and iPhone application.
The Hitachi Touro Mobile Pro 500Gb external hard disk costs around £50.
As an online environment allowing us to move, share and synchronise files, Hitachi Cloud Backup comes well recommended. Likewise the Touro Mobile Pro is a fast, efficient and generously sized drive ideal for people on the go.
Friday, 16 September 2011
This is a sponsored post.
At times I feel like Hannah Montana. I mean the whole living a double life thing not the international pop star with a good looking Daddy (oh come on who doesn't have a soft spot for Billy Ray Cyrus?) because whilst I'm Pippa the stay at home Mummy to most people I also have a job and so I am Pippa the working Mummy. I work Monday through Thursday nights between 6pm and Midnight from home and my boss is one of the most amazing women that I know, as she balances a family, a job and ... oh wait I'm my own boss aren't I!
One of the other great things about my job (other than I am my own boss) is that most of it happens after Top Ender and Big Boy are in bed and so whilst they know that Mummy is working on the computer and I'm not able to run upstairs if they keep calling every five minutes (Daddy is able to though and some nights they have that worked out and will have him run ragged!), I get to live the double life of being a stay at home Mum by day and a working Mum in the evenings. I just need a job of fighting crime at night and I'll be living the dream...
I personally think I have the best of both worlds as my job fits in with my family life and suits my particular set of skills and interests. I was lucky that unlike a lot of people that think about working for themselves or having a job that fits around their lives I fell into my perfect job and didn't have to spend hours searching for something that was suitable for me. This is why I love websites such as http://www.workingmums.co.uk because they have jobs that are suitable for Mums or details of franchises that may interest Mums looking for a job that will fit around them.
The one thing I do really need help with though is what do I call myself? Am I am working Mum, a stay at home Mum or is there something else that I should be calling myself?
Thursday, 15 September 2011
I was reading Sally's The Bad Mother's Guide to the School Run and despite my smirk (totally not a self-satisfied smirk) I realised that Sally did sort of have a point about the School Run. So many parents dread it, not because they are bad parents (although Sally is a really bad parent*, she didn't even recognise her own daughter in a school photo!) but because they expectations they have of themselves and their children just are not realistic.
And so I present to you The Can Be A Good Mother at Times Guide to the School Run!
Tip One Don't allow time for things to go wrong. By planning ahead.
The morning is a rush. Everyone wants a few minutes extra in bed, everyone wants a turn in the bathroom and everyone needs to be out the door without losing any limbs. So plan. The night before make sure that everyone has clean clothes for the next day, make sure that buttons have been sewn on (or sent to Grandma's/the lady down the road who sews things up) and that party RSVP's have been text back. Do make sure that you have enough time to do everything, but as Sally says don't allow time for distractions or you will regret it.
Tip Two Location is everything.
Everything in your house needs a place, you already know that and even my very cluttered house has a place for the hairbrush (Top of the fireplace), a place for coats (by the front door), a place for shoes (in the box near the coats) and a place for School bags (again by the coats). If everything is there then you won't waste time looking for lost shoes, bags or children. Oh and moving to be a few minutes walk from the School whilst drastic works for some...
Tip Three Eat
Wednesday, 14 September 2011
Tuesday, 13 September 2011
This is a sponsored post, but I really did buy new PJ's and your welcome to come and see them!
Last night I was looking through various online stores including the new to me Ellos Website for new pyjamas and new shoes for me. I had to ask on Twitter what I should buy because I couldn't decide, yes I know that I had noticed recently that my PJ's were getting a little tired and I had had to recycle a pair last week because they were getting a little religious (you know all holey), but I like shoes too. In the end I had to ask on Twitter because I couldn't decide!
I got some rather amusing responses, about how many people would see my shoes in comparison to how many people would see my pyjamas. I think you all forgot about my special relationship with the postman though, as I pretty sure he has seen all of my pyjama range. I also had a lot of suggestions about how I could sleep in the nude or in my day clothes if it came to it. I was getting really excited about buying some new shoes.
Then there were a few responses about how there is nothing better than a nice pair of comfy PJ's and that PJ's make bedtime fun (Although I don't think it was that kind of fun they were thinking of!) but in the end Daddy ruined it all by telling me that I needed to buy new PJ's. He is such a spoil sport at times!
The problems really started then as there are so many different types of nightwear to choose from. In the end I narrowed it down to a selection on two different websites... but I'm not telling you what I went with because I want the postman to have the first look!
Monday, 12 September 2011
I have had a few amusing comments passed along to me about Caption It Monday, and a couple of questions. Yes, you can suggest any caption for the photo that you think fits and as long as it isn't too rude, contains swear words or I consider it abuse I will let it stay! Just to confirm too that last week it was Top Ender in the picture and she was about seven months old. We had been for a BBQ at my parents and for some reason the wigs came out. I do have more pictures of other family members in the wigs and I will accept cash donations for not publishing them... I'm hoping that this week's picture will spark a caption in you as it features Daddy!
As usual the winner and runners up will get some linky love next week and so here are the winners from last weeks Caption It Monday!
#On the good ship, lollipop#" from Nickie
"A rare, early glimpse of Lady Gaga, performing." from Sally
"Darling, shouldn't you have left the cabbage patch kid at home" from Jen
"Mummy, I asked for Marilyn Monroe...not Shaun the Sheep" from Gilly
I shall leave the lovely photo of Daddy in your capable hands.
Saturday, 10 September 2011
1 pack Tilda Steamed Pure Basmati rice
500ml semi-skimmed milk, plus extra for serving (optional)
50g caster sugar
50g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
2 medium bananas, peeled and sliced
Tip the rice into a non-stick saucepan and add the 50g of sugar and 500ml of milk. Bring to a simmer and gently simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened.
Add the chocolate and stir until melted, whilst the pan is over a low heat (if it's high you might burn your fingers like Top Ender nearly did).
Remove from the heat and add any extra milk according to preference. You can stir in the bananas and just remember to leave a few pieces to decorate the top.
This Special Fried Rice was the first of the recipes that Top Ender and I made at the Tilda Mummy and Me Cookery School. I can't believe how simple it is to make something so tasty and we have been making variations of the meal since we got home. The details were were given said that it serves four small portions or two adults portions, but I added another packed or rice and found that it served our family of four and gave us a lot of leftovers!
Finely slice the spring onions and chop the green beans, into small pieces. I let Top Ender cut the green beans and the spring onions using scissors and she did a great job. Heat the oil in a wok then add the chopped vegetables and stir fry for about minute before adding the chicken and the marinade. Stir fry for a few more minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
Add the Tilda Steamed Basmati Egg Fried Rice, the sweetcorn and the pineapple. Heat everything through by Stir frying it for about two more minutes and then serve!
Friday, 9 September 2011
My family are doing really well out of my status as of a Morphy Richards House Proud Innovator. When they come round I can serve them a hot drink or toast or a milkshake and my sister even got an ironing board to further her ironing obsession! This month Morphy Richards sent me the new Accents One Cup which I am very pleased to be able to review and then pass on to my Mum to review too!
The Accents One Cup is pretty to look at, I like curvy designs and it comes in a bright red or a more subtle black (which is the colour I received) and so will fit in with most kitchens and most University students bedrooms (stay with me on this one, there is more about this side in a minute). The idea is really simple, when you boil a kettle for one cup of tea (or coffee, or cup a soup, or pot noodle etc) use this instead. You can put in the right amount of water for your mug and potentially save energy! Look at this video and see what I mean!
Now my maths is okay (I have two GCSE's in Maths at Grade C you know) and so I worked out that as it uses 46p per hour and that it took 41 seconds to do all it needed it comes to a grand total of 0.5p to boil a cup of water. My kettle filled to the minimal amount uses 46p her hour too and it takes takes 70 seconds to do all it needs to do. That means boiling a kettle costs 0.9p to boil so nearly double the amount, so you can drink twice the amount!
You can buy the One Cup from Morphy Richards for £34.99
Thursday, 8 September 2011
It's such a silly thing to do, but is such a giggle that making the bed every morning becomes less of a chore and more game like everyday.
Taking off the sheets for putting on new ones is something that we have turned into a race or for variety a game of tug of war! If we are playing tug of war one of us has to hold the duvet or pillows and the other holds the duvet cover or pillow cases. Then we just have to both PULL! Just make sure that it is a little pull or you could find someone falling on to their bottom... Making a race of taking all the sheets off the bed has meant that both Top Ender and Big Boy could do it without any adult assistance, and as well as making the chores fun, teaching them how to do the chores too!
Putting on new sheets (or clean sheets as I sometimes leave the bed unmade for a few hours until the sheets in the wash are clean and dry) is something I used to hate. It would always be a struggle to get the duvet into the duvet cover, and then I would get stuck if I went into the duvet cover to straighten out the duvet. Now though with the help of Top Ender or Big Boy and (and sometimes both!) it is a game and easier.
An one last tip as I could never flip the mattress over without wondering if I was turning it the way it had been flipped last time, I numbered the corners of the mattress. Now I know just to make sure that the next highest number is in the bottom corner!