A Mothers Ramblings: November 2016

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

New Year's Eve Ideas

Last year, was the first year that both Dan Jon Jr and Top Ender tried to stay awake to ring in the New Year. Amazingly, they both managed it and I think in part it was due to the ways I'd been thinking up to get the entire family to ring in New Years Eve together, rather than everyone spending most of the evening hiding in our own bedrooms or on different consoles and being together but not actually doing anything together.

Top Ender and Dan Jon Jr with their 2016 hats

The family all agreed that I could be in charge of activities and as long as there was food and I did listen to some of their suggestions as to what we did and ate then everyone would be happy... So, I planned activities to keep us busy the entire day.

The following are ideas that worked for us last year!

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

New Garden Visitors

When I posted pictures a couple of weeks ago of my front garden, I had a couple of friends ask me about the garden ornaments that they could see. I thought at first, they were talking about my Christmas light, but soon realised that they were talking about something which mean a lot more to me.

Can you spot them in this picture below?

A slightly closer view of my Garden Ornaments

Monday, 28 November 2016

Saving Plans - I HATE THEM!

I HATE SAVING PLANS.

Actually that isn't true.

I hate the saving plans that start circulating more heavily in the next few weeks. The ones that are titled things like;

2017 Weekly Saving Plan! 

or

Save £1378 in just one year!


or

Easy 2017 Jar Saving Plan!

Saturday, 26 November 2016

What We Are Eating This Week W/C 26th November 2016

Hoorah, it's Saturday already which means that today I get to go shopping... oh wait no I don't because I was super organised and I went yesterday with Top Ender and that means that today I can have a lay in and just relax!

I'm so excited. You could be reading this, and I could still be in bed.

Dan Jon Jr having a yawn

Although, I probably won't because Dan Jon Jr will want me to be the one that gets up with him!

Friday, 25 November 2016

Two Things I Learnt From Gardening With My Husband

After Flyfour and I spent a morning working on the front garden together, I had a lot of time to think over the morning because I was building a boat.

Yes, a boat.

Anyway.

Whilst I was building the boat and throughout the Church service I attended the next day I was thinking about having worked in the garden with Flyfour and I realised I had learnt some valuable life lessons, the kind of life lessons I should probably share with the world. I shared these with my husband and he agreed that these were worthy of sharing with the world, so I present these to you now.

Thursday, 24 November 2016

A New Hair Cut

Dan Jon Jr got the short end of the straw when the genes that make him were jostling for dominancy. He had no option but to get curly hair, both his Daddy and I are cursed blessed with it, but for some reason my hairs lack of obedience and desire to do it's own thing won out and Dan Jon ended up with a mop that normally looks like the below. 

Dan Jon Jr with freshley brushed straight out of bed hair

And that's when it's been brushed!

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

The Priesthood Preview

When this February I was asked to be the Primary President in the ward I belong to, I thought it would be fun. I mean, I love being with the Children each week, and I love listening to what they have to say and what they have been up to and I hope that the Children know that and know that I'm there as a sort of responsible adult if they want to talk, or have a hug or just be told how fantastic they are. That doesn't go away after they leave Primary either, when they move on to the Young Women's and Young Men's programmes I'm still there for them.

Of all the responsibilities I have there was one thing that I had no clue about and that was the Priesthood Preview. I had no clue about this because, the first priesthood holder in my family will be Dan Jon Jr, and not until he is twelve. As he is only eight right now and we're all still thinking about how his Baptism went well, all I have to think about with regards to him and Church is getting him there on time, dressed and keeping my fingers crossed that he behaves! 

Dan Jon Jr at Church

Secondly, until this year it had been handled by the Stake Primary Presidency so I saw nothing of the arrangements and of course had never attended not being a priesthood holder or a parent of one about to become one myself. So, I did what anyone else would do. 

I googled, I searched Pinterest, I read talks on LDS.org that would help me understand what was required of the young men and of course I spoke with the Young Mens President who would be the one leading the meeting with the boys!

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

The Front Garden

During the Summer, the plan was that we were going to spend a few minutes each day tackling our front garden. It was my plan, but we had spoken it through as a family and we decided that we were going to as a family, dig up the weeds, plants, bulbs and just clear the garden so that we could make it a tidy, neat and hopefully easier to keep weed free reflection of our home.

Plus, a bit of kerb appeal never harms anyone right?

The garden after Pippa cleared it

Instead, one day whilst Flyfour was at work, Top Ender was at one of her camps and Dan Jon Jr was busy building an entire kingdom in Minecraft I tackled the front garden. It took me all day, but I pulled out the things that we didn't want, I dug up all my bulbs and I tried to make the small patch of land at the front of my home look... well a bit tidier I guess.

Monday, 21 November 2016

25 Quick Breakfast Ideas and More Required!

On the way home from Church at the start of Autumn, I announced to the children that I would like them to think of some different breakfast ideas for us three to eat on weekdays mornings. It seemed to me that we were only eating the same two or three dishes, the things that we turn to time and time again that we all like, or that most of us like. I wanted something different, something to tempt our taste buds and I wanted to keep the bank manager happy too!

Top Ender and Dan Jon Jr having a morning photo

As it is quite cold in the mornings, I wanted something warm for them and I to eat before they head off out into the cold, but it also needed to be something that was fairly quick to prepare and/or eat, as we try to squeeze a lot into our mornings with Scripture Study and showers and taking our daily Instagram Selfies and of course the Children trying not to get out of bed until the last possible second...

So, we started a list of breakfast ideas that we already eat, which I've recreated below.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

What We Are Eating W/C 19th November 2016

Hello! I'm excited about the meal plan this week, it seems like I actually have a life as I'm out a few times (I know the horror!) and so I'm going to try and keep everything simple and make sure that it is family friendly and tasty.

The A Mother's Ramblings Family

I'm also going to try and not use every single cooking pot in the house, because that way there won't be too much to do dishes wise as I hate doing the dishes!

Monday, 14 November 2016

New Christmas Lights!

Over the last couple of weeks, one of my younger neighbours (well, he is a teenager, that counts at younger right?) has asked me and his Mum (who subsequently asked me) about when my Christmas lights are going up. I think that he may be more excited that I am and I am REALLY excited.

The problem that I have is that last year the lights that I had inherited from my Sister, (who herself had inherited them from a friend) were looking a little tired and broken and repairing them might look simple according to the youtube videos I've found, but I think it will also work out really expensive.

So I decided that I what I really needed to do was look into buying some new lights, which again costs a fortune according to the internet research I've been participating in. However I found something that was rather fun and wasn't that expensive... an LED Kaleidoscope Christmas Light Set!

LED Kaleidoscope Christmas Light Set

Flyfour and I managed to set them up in the garden so that they only decorated the outside of our house, not that of our neighbours (which is a good thing!) and Top Ender and I have some rather smashing plans to finish off a bit more decoration before we officially turn on the lights during the last weekend of November or December 1st.

The great thing is, the Children and I have decided that what we really want to do is work on this every year and create something new and different and funny and something that our family can work on together.

We are really excited about it and can't wait to show you the finished design in just a few short weeks!

Saturday, 12 November 2016

What We Are Eating This Week W/C 12th November 2016

I was almost asleep before I remembered that I haven't worked out what we were going to eat this week, so I started paying more attention to QI and woke myself up to create this weeks Meal Plan for my busy family. Talking of QI, I wish I had put on Facebook, by the way the prediction I had about this current series. I said that I bet Alan would be smart and win as it had been Stephen Fry holding him back and if you've been watching, you'd know that is EXACTLY what has happened until this week when Alan was back in his usual position of last place. I'd cry fix, but I'd probably wake up the neighbours.

My pet Rooster

Anyway, whilst watching QI, I worked out what the family and I were doing this forth coming week added it all to my google calendar and decided what we should eat too.

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

School Meals Ahead!

Today will be the first day that Dan Jon Jr eats a hot meal at School that I haven't prepared and sent in with him as part of his lunchbox. Yup, with our School having recently built it's own on site kitchen, Dan Jon Jr wanted to swap from having packed lunches to having school meals a few days per week just as Top Ender did when she went up to Senior School.

There have been a few hassles, because of Dan Jon's diabetes but it's okay, we're prepared and it's not like we haven't done anything in the past that has been more difficult or stressful.

Top Ender and Dan Jon Jr

Monday, 7 November 2016

It's a Grey Day

It's rather a grey day today isn't it?

Well, I thought looking at some pictures from the Summer might cheer me up and I figured that you might like to take a look too because the memories of a Summer Day is better than sitting looking at an actual real life Grey one!

I took these pictures on a day trip to my Nan's. It was just before the weather turned at the end of August and we had an absolute blast. Flyfour hadn't been able to join us and when he sat looking through my photos later in the week he was shocked at how blue the sea and sky were. I'm pretty sure there were some comments about how he was sure we had actually sneakily flew off to somewhere hot and sunny, but this was just plain old Norfolk.

The Beach at Bacton

Saturday, 5 November 2016

What We Are Eating W/C 5th November 2016

I don't know why I bother making meal plans anymore.

I seem to take one look at what we're supposed to be having and decide against it. Which is why this week there are a lot of repeats of last weeks meals, because we didn't eat what we were supposed to last week!

Saturday - Fish Pie


The Fish Pie was going to be my highlight of the week and so I'm rather excited to be eating it tonight, especially knowing that tomorrow we have Salmon too.

I love Fish!


Again, Flyfour won't be too pleased, but I'll remind him that he is watching a film with Top Ender ronight and will eat Popcorn and sweets so he should think himself lucky lol.

Friday, 4 November 2016

The Haunted House Trunk N Treat

I wanted to write a little about our Ward Trunk N' Treat because as usual it was a fantastic evening and something that I think years later I'll wish I had documented!

Flyfour and I arrived with the children, three slow cookers full of soup, (the fact that at the end of the night we took home three almost full slow cookers of soup isn't important) and a car boot full of decorations, a marquee and enough glow sticks to light twenty-two and a half raves.

Dan Jon Jr as Ash Ketchum and Top Ender as the Girl Inkling from the Wii U Game Splatoon

Top Ender was dressed as an Inkling from Splatoon and Dan Jon was Ash Ketchum from Pokémon and together they went off to help others in the ward set up the Cultural Hall for when we would share a meal together at the end of the evening.

Thursday, 3 November 2016

Ravensburger Fireworks Over Sydney 2000 Piece Puzzle #Review

I like to try to do things with my family.

Like, I might try a new food, or we might try a new sport, or we might read a new book together or craft together... the one thing that we hadn't done together for a few ears however was work on a jigsaw together. In fact, thinking on it, other than the small children jigsaws I hadn't really worked on a jigsaw since I was in labour with Top Ender.

It had to be rectified.

A family jigsaw was a perfect way for us to spend time together now that it was colder outside and all we wanted to be doing was curling up in our nice warm home with some cinnamon sprinkled hot chocolate and plenty of hot buttered teacakes...

By random coincidence I was offered a chance to review a jigsaw and so I accepted and this beauty, Fireworks Over Sydney, turned up.

Ravensburger Fireworks Over Sydney 2000 Piece Puzzle #Review

Kid Made Snow Globe Cards

Earlier this year one of my personal heroes asked if anyone wanted to join in with a Child made Christmas Card series. I thought this would be perfect for the children and I to do together during the October half term and as I had an idea, before I knew it I had volunteered myself and the Children to make some Snow Globe inspired Christmas cards... yeah I know I forgot that my children and I are rubbish at crafts.

The snow globe inspiration came from finding a stash of Pringle can lids in one of our crafting drawers. I had used the cans to make a punch game at Church (It was such a hardship having to eat 16 small cans of Pringles!) and had put the clear plastic lids to one side knowing that one day I'd find a use for them!

Kid Made Snow Globe Cards

Plus who doesn't love a glitter filled snow globe?

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

The KonMari Method Six Months Later

When I first read the Marie Kondo book I was prepared to think it was rubbish. I mean I've followed other plans in the past to try and help me to get my home neat and tidy and none of them have worked. I guess it's because just like Healthy Eating, it's not about a diet, it's about making a lifestyle change. As I read the book, the idea made more and more sense to me.

Half of me thinks it's not because this method is any better than any other, but because this book gives me permission to get rid of things which are perfectly useful, to give things to people or charity or places that need the items or can make use of them. The other half of me thinks I just needed a reason to do something about the amount of junk I had in my home, which quite honestly I should have done months before but as Flyfour said to me this last week, even he didn't realise we had so much "stuff".

We couldn't see the wood for the trees.