Thursday, 31 May 2012

My Son's Fifth Year in Pictures

Tomorrow Wee Z turns 5. That's half a decade. Scary!

At the age of 5, he faces his biggest coming of age yet by starting school after the summer holidays. He can't wait. I wish it wasn't happening so soon.

Here is my son's fifth year in pictures:

On his fourth birthday
4 + 1 month
4 + 2 months
4 + 3 months
4 + 4 months
4 + 5 months and it's Bonfire Night
4 + 6 months
4 + 7 months
4 + 8 months
4 + 9 months
4 + 10 months
4 + 11 months

Barefoot Books - Review

The kids were delighted with a special delivery they received last week. Inside their parcel was a bag with some books from Barefoot Books. We were sent a World Atlas, The Giant Turnip, The Prince's Bedtime and Terrible Chenoo.

Wee Z immediately went off with the World Atlas book. He already has an Atlas that belonged to his Daddy so, unfortunately, it isn't the most up-to-date book! This Atlas is more current and had lots of little "pull down" bits to read and interesting facts to learn. Wee Z also loved the poster at the end of the book to hang up on his bedroom wall.

Miss C chose one of the story books, The Prince's Bedtime, and set herself upon her Daddy's knee for him to read it to her. Miss C was a bit slow on the uptake to books but she is more than making up for it now and she especially loves books with animals in them. The Prince's Bedtime tells the story of a kingdom's relentless efforts to try and help the young Prince go to sleep as the King and Queen are at their wits end, something I think a lot of parents can relate too.

The Prince's Bedtime and The Gigantic Turnip both come with an audio CD. I prefer to sit and read a book as I think the kids take more in when we read to them however audio CDs are perfect for long car journeys. Barefoot Books have quite a few books that come with audio CDs, infact one of the books we already have in our collection, If you're happy and you know it, comes with an audio CD and it's one of our favourites.

I loved the artwork in all of the books and I love that they are all multi-cultural so you can learn about the different races and places in the World. The story of The Terrible Chenoo is from North America whilst other books in the "Monster Series" are from Italy or Nepal.

As well as books for all ages, Barefoot Books also sell jigsaws, games and fun creative packs such as Kids' Kitchen which includes 40 recipe cards. The brochure I received is packed full of books and gift ideas!

Books always go down well in our household and Barefoot Books have confirmed that even more!

Barefoot Books started in 1992 when two mothers wanted their children feed their imagination. Stories that would encourage them to respect and love their planet and it's diversity. Today, they are a community of storytellers, musicians, artists and many others who are committed to creating timeless stories with beautiful artwork for children of all ages.

Barefoot Books also run an ambassador program so if you love books and working from home then you can read more about it on their website.

We received a pack of book from Barefoot Books for the purposes of a review. The opinions expressed are my own.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Where's My Cupcake? - Review

I have secretly been helping Orchard Toys develop new games...OK, I haven't really but their new game "Where's My Cupcake?" is right up my street and could have been made for me alone.

Here is a video review we made of us playing the game:

To recap:
  • A collect and matching game
  • Suitable for ages 3+
  • 2-4 players
  • Encourages sharing and social skills
  • Priced at £7.50 on the Orchard Toys website
We had lots of fun playing "Where's My Cupcake?" and would definitely recommend it to add to any Orchard Toys collection. The most fun I had with cupcakes without actually eating them!

We received Where's My Cupcake for the purposes of a review. The opinions expressed are my own.

The Gallery - Sunshine

We've been enjoying over a week of glorious weather now. When the sun is shining we feel much happier and much more relaxed.

We enjoy picnics, playing outside in the garden, going swimming in the paddling pools and most of all, trips to the park.

These pictures were taken last week. I love how green the trees are in the sunshine. They are also great for providing much needed shade for very warm children!

This post is for The Gallery. The theme this week is Sunshine.

Monday, 28 May 2012

A Letter to My Daughter Aged 3

Dear Miss C,

Today you turned three years old. It doesn't seem like you've been here for three years, more like you have always been here. That we had a life before you came doesn't seem right in some way.

This year we've noticed you really come out of your shell and your personality is really starting to shine brightly. You've always been quiet but that isn't because you are shy. You just like to be heard when you want to be.

You are definitely a "Daddy's Girl" which is probably because you spend a lot of time with him on your own whilst Wee Z is at nursery. And, of course, he is a brilliant Daddy too! However, at night time, if you get upset it's me you want to comfort you. It's nice to know that you still need your Mummy sometimes!

You definitely know what you want and are determined to do things for yourself, like getting dressed, putting your shoes on and brushing your teeth. You are getting good at all of these things too but sometimes still need some help.

You love animals and always want to cuddle Casper and the other cats. If we go to the park you always say, "Awwwwww" at the animals, especially the baby ones and want to cuddle them and stroke them. You are desperate for a puppy but for now we will be sticking to cats.

You love trying new things whether it be new games, new places or new foods.

You hate beasties. I think you take that from me!

You had a fantastic birthday. You got lots of lovely new toys from friends, family and from us too. You had so much fun at the farm park with your best friend from next door too. And the best bit of all was the birthday cake and blowing out your candles. You loved everyone singing Happy Birthday to you.

Happy birthday my little princess!

Lots of love from Mummy xxx+o

Miss C aged 3

Sunday, 27 May 2012

The Sunday Round-Up #WeekTwentyone

Last Sunday, the sun was shining and everyone was in a good mood. We decided to take advantage of the nice weather and do our gardening. We have a low maintenance garden, that's how we like it, so gardening involved weeding and sweeping. Husband also washed all the slabs and decking with his pressure washer. The decking was being re-painted so he had to make sure it was all clean first. Miss C and Wee Z came into the front garden with me, which we don't use at all, so this was a novelty for them.

On Monday, the sun was still shining. We were hoping this was going to be the start of some really good weather. The kids and I sat outside enjoying the sunshine on our newly cleaned decking.

On Tuesday, the sun was shining even brighter, so we took advantage of the nice weather and had the spaceship tent up outside along with some toys inside to play with. The kids loved it!

On Wednesday, we put the paddling pool up. It was even hotter but we kept them cool and made sure they were well covered up and lathered in sun cream. They loved the pool so much, they stayed in there for their shower!

On Thursday, we went to the park. We met up with Miss E and Wee L and they had a great time running around with a ball and even got to sit in a fire engine when one turned up at the park. There wasn't a fire, thankfully! I think they just came for a visit. Husband managed to paint the decking whilst we were there and it was all done for us coming home.

On Friday, ballet was off so we played outside all day. Husband painted the fences whilst Miss C and Wee Z played on the trampoline. I was rushing around getting the last few bits for their birthday party.

On Saturday, after karate, we had friends over for a picnic outside. We had sandwiches and crisps, strawberries and juice and, to cool us all down, we had ice cream and ice lollies.

I hope this lovely weather is going to continue!

My Daughter's Third Year in Photos

Tomorrow, Miss C turns 3. I can't believe how quickly, not only this year, but the last 3 years have gone passed.

Over the course of the year from her last birthday I've noticed Miss C become more talkative, more sociable and more cheeky.

I have noticed her change from a toddler into to a little girl.

Here is her third year in photos:

25 months
26 months
27 months
28 months
29 months and it's Halloween
30 months
31 months and getting ready for New Year
32 months
33 months
34 months
35 months

Silent Sunday

Friday, 25 May 2012

How to Plan a Garden/House Party

This weekend we are celebrating Miss C turning 3 and Wee Z turning 5 next week by having a bit of a get-together at our house. We did the big party last year where all the kids from the nursery group were invited but this year we decided to just have the party at home.

Some people may say we are crazy. What if it is raining? Do we really want all those people inside the house? I'm taking a PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) approach here and saying it will not rain, it will be glorious and everyone will have a great time.

First thing on my list of planning was our guest list. Because the party is at home, we decided to invite close friends and family only. We have about 13 kids coming and probably double the adults. Inviting all the grandparents means they can keep the kids amused whilst we get food and drinks sorted for everyone.

Next on the list was food and drink. The party starts at 1:30 so I thought a light snack around 2:30 would be good. We'll have the usual party food essentials such as cocktail sausages, top hats and crisps and we'll do some hot food too, probably pizza and chips. I'm also making cake pops!

Finally we had to plan party games. We've decided to go with the classics: musical statues, pass the parcel and a balloon relay race. I can't wait to see the kids trying to run with a big balloon between their legs. We may even have one for the adults too.

The party is scheduled to finish at 3:30 but the beauty of having a party at home is that we aren't restricted to times nor do we have to be out before another party comes in. The only drawback is all the cleaning up I'll have to do afterwards!

Fingers crossed for the sunshine!

My Daughter's Second Year in Photos

The second year of Miss C's life was completely different from her first year. Her first year consisted of nappy changing, feeding, broken sleep and lots of baby cuddles. We didn't really see her personality start to shine through until after her first birthday and with that came learning to walk, to run and to speak lots of new words every day.

Miss C dotted (and still does) on her brother. She wanted to do everything Wee Z could do and would sit patiently with him whilst he would teach her her ABCs and how to count and show her how to play with her toys and sometimes his own toys too! Their bond started to grow a lot more in her second year which was lovely to watch.

Here is my daughter's second year in photos:

13 months and starting to get into mischief
14 months
15 months
16 months and starting to lose some of her baby chubby-ness
17 months and her first pigtails
18 months

19 months and her second Christmas
20 months
21 months
22 months and still loves her cuddles
23 months
Birthday girl turns 2

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Our Primary One Induction

Last week Wee Z and I headed down to what will be his primary school after the summer holidays for our induction meeting. We pass it during the week because he goes to the nursery attached to the school so it wasn't unfamiliar territory and he has been enjoying weekly visits since the Easter holidays to meet his teachers and discover the classrooms.

I was really nervous about the meeting, not really knowing what to expect and it made it all very real that in a few months my little boy will be starting school. Not that Wee Z is phased by the prospect of leaving nursery. He is really looking forward to going to school and has been since he started nursery almost 2 years ago!

The meeting went really well and I enjoyed watching a DVD the P6 class had made as a welcome and introduction to the primary school. Wee Z has a P6 buddy who will be in P7 when he goes which I think is a great idea to help the young ones get settled into primary school and knowing they have a child to look up to if they need them.

Whilst the parents had the formal meeting, Wee Z went off with Miss E and some of his other nursery friends to play in the classroom with the three primary 1 teachers. I didn't get much from Wee Z when they came back other than they had played and had fun. They were more interested in the refreshments cart with the plate of chocolate biscuits on it.

Next week I shall find out what class he is going into. He has a favourite out of the three primary 1 teachers, the young one, "without any wrinkles!"

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

The Gallery - Picture Postcard

My Grandma still sends us a postcard, although it is addressed to Wee Z and Miss C now, when she goes on holiday. Usually the pictures are of some gorgeous beach with a parasol and a beach ball thrown in for good measure whilst others scream of culture, adventure and sight-seeing.

The photo I have chosen for the Picture Postcard theme is one I have shared on my blog before. I took it when we were on holiday last year in Aviemore.

I really love this photo. I love the way the trees are just perfectly posed infront of the bridge and the path of the river winding round encouraging you to go and explore.

This post is for The Gallery. The theme this week is Picture Postcard.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

My Daughter's First Year in Photos

My little baby is no longer a little baby but a little girl. Miss C is turning 3 next week which is exciting and I am really happy for her as she is looking forward to her birthday but I'm sad because she really isn't a baby/toddler anymore.

Recently I've been looking through photos of Miss C as a baby. It scares me to think that it was 3 years ago that they were taken because it seems like only yesterday. How time flies...!

As a little tribute to Miss C turning 3, I decided to post her life in pictures this week and leading up to her birthday.

Here is my daughter's first year in photos:

Our brand new baby girl, a few minutes old
A few days old, having a snooze
A very pretty girly dress
1 month old
2 months old
Getting bigger at 3 months old
What a chubby little girl at 4 months old
5 months old
6 months old and trying some vegetables
7 months old and having her first Christmas
8 months old
9 months old
10 months old and sitting up by herself
11 months old and raring to go
A big girl of 1

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