Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Me & Mine 2015 - March

March. The month of lighter mornings and evenings and blooming daffodils. Spring is being born everywhere we look.

On the first really beautiful day of the month, we managed a trip to the park. It was a welcomed visit after a few weeks of illness in the house. It wasn't warm enough for just t-shirts but the kids felt pretty warm wearing their bodywarmers on top of one.

March has felt like a pretty long month to me even though it has actually flown in, as per usual. I've been working hard at college as it is getting close to the time where we have to hand in our graded unit. My topic is on outdoor play and the benefits to children's development. It's such a huge area to look at but I'm enjoying the investigation part. The writing it all up? Well that's another story. Let's just say I'm really looking forward to the two weeks off at Easter.

Husband continues to work hard as always. He was unwell for a few days this month and I think he could have done with staying home in his bed but he carried on, the tower of strength to us that he always is. He is obviously distraught over the whole Jeremy Clarkson saga and is missing Top Gear a lot.

Z has been enjoying the topic of enterprise at school. His class came up with a project to raise enough money to go on a class trip to the dry ski slope. He had a Share the Learning day at school that Husband went along to and he got to show him the technology department they go to in the secondary for their ICT lessons. He's been really enthusiastic about enterprising and he's been thinking of all sorts of businesses he can open. Not a bad thing at all!

Miss C had a Share the Learning day to school this month too. Her topic was Fairyland. We had a to make a castle last month and we were invited in to school to see all the castles and to make lots of fairy and castle related crafts. It was really fun and Miss C loved showing her Papa and I around her classroom.

I'm really looking forward to having some time off in April!

dear beautiful

Monday, 30 March 2015

Like Mother, Like Daughter

Having a daughter is amazing. Of course, having a son is amazing too but there's something amazing about having a little girl to relive all the memories you had as a little girl through.

When we went to Disney On Ice on Saturday, I was just as excited as Miss C (maybe even a bit more) and we kept talking about who we couldn't wait to see. I love that she loves Disney just as much as I do.

Ariel is my favourite Disney Princess. She reminds me of me in the rebellious teenage years where I never listened to my step-dad and often escaped to meet up with my friends. I never bargained my voice with a sea witch though.

As soon as Ariel came on to the ice, I was getting emotional. Seeing Ariel reminded me of our trip to Disneyland Paris and Miss C's face when she (finally) got to meet Ariel. She was so excited and taken in by her. And I was standing with the camera covering my face as my eyes were tearing up watching her. 

These moments are the moments that really special memories are made from and I absolutely love having a little girl to make them with, just as my Sister and I were lucky enough to do when we were younger. 

Sunday, 29 March 2015

The Week That Was #13

Last Sunday, we didn't get up until after 10am which was great and very much needed. The kids and I had breakfast and Husband headed out on his bike for a ride. Miss C had a party to attend which she went to with her best friend. Z and I stayed at home and chilled out until it was time for swimming lessons.

On Monday, it was back to college and school. I managed to get away a bit earlier than normal which was nice and I got to walk home in the sunshine. Z was playing outside with his football and Miss C was doing her homework with Daddy. We had stovies for dinner and then cuddled up on the couch to watch some TV before shower time.

On Tuesday, it was day two of college for me and it felt like a really long day. I picked the kids up from my friend's house and we headed home. Z wanted to practise his dribbling skills and Miss C wanted to play with her Sylvanian Families. After dinner, we headed up to bed for a story and an early night.

On Wednesday, I was supposed to be at placement but I felt awful. My back was aching, I was shivery and my throat felt like it was on fire. I spent the day at home working on my college work. I picked the kids up after school and the fresh air was very welcomed. When we got home, the kids got changed and played whilst I lay on the couch until dinner time. An early night was called for.

On Thursday, I felt a bit better so I dropped the kids off at school and headed to my placement. The day went in quickly but by the afternoon I was tired. After the kids got home, we chilled out by playing a game of Rhyme Robber from Orchard Toys.

On Friday, I dropped the kids off at school and headed to the shops. When I came home and after I had put the shopping away, I finished off some college work and then enjoyed a lazy afternoon catching up on Hollyoaks. Z had his best friend over after school and then played Xbox for a bit before heading to their Friday club. They always meet up with the rest of their foursome there. Miss C and I came home and watched Lilo and Stitch.

On Saturday, it was a busy day for us all. Miss C and I got our haircut and then Miss C and her best friend, who came over mid colouring, got their hair done for going to Disney On Ice. They looked like little Princesses all dressed up for the show. I'll post a full review of the show and their pictures in there but it was amazing! We got the train home and Husband picked us up and we collected an Indian take away for dinner. Husband and Z spent the day together in town and at the cinema seeing Home. We were exhausted by 8pm!

The Black and White Photo Project #37

My Sunday Photo 2015 #13


Saturday, 28 March 2015

365 Project 2015 Days 81 - 87

Day 81 - Pasta and meatballs after swimming lessons went down a treat
Day 82 - Feeling lazy after school
Day 83 - The sunshine was out so Z was out playing football
Day 84 - The sunshine continued meaning the washing was out on the line
Day 85 - We played Rhyme Robbers from Orchard Toys and Z is being serious
Day 86 - Enjoying some Friday night TV
Day 87 - Can you guess where we are going today?

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Blooming Daffodils

I get really excited when Spring arrives. I love it being lighter in the mornings and in the evenings. It's a bit warmer, the sun is shining and the daffodils are in full bloom.

We headed to the park last weekend to enjoy some of the beautiful Spring sunshine and admire the daffodil patch. It really is beautiful when you see the golden yellow bursting from the green grass.

The kids played in the park for a little while; Z played with a friend and Miss C was on and off the swings a lot. She too met a friend whilst we were there and they played together on their scooters.

Husband then headed off with Z in to town to get a haircut whilst Miss C and I stayed on a little longer. We fed the ducks, went on the zip-slide and then headed to the daffodils. I felt a bit like Alice in Wonderland where she lies in the flower bed and has a little nap. I could easily have lay in the sunshine all afternoon. I literally can't wait for Summer to arrive!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Friday, 27 March 2015

SMA B.A.B.Y Top Tips from Parents

Last month I shared with you my piece of advice for new parents and encouraged you to join in and share your top tip with SMA Nutrition for the B.A.B.Y (Baby Advice By You) campaign. My advice for new parents was to keep a muslin cloth under your babies' head when they are in their cot, making sure it’s tucked in tightly so there’s nothing loose inside their cot. That way, if they spit up a bit of milk you can just change the muslin cloth instead of the sheet.

The prize up for grabs was an amazing makeover in London, the chance to film the advice for the SMA Nutrition YouTube channel and a £250 voucher for a local spa. 

The winners have been picked from the people who submitted their advice via SMA Nutrition’s website and you can check out their winning pieces of advice on the SMA Nutrition YouTube channel. Which one is your favourite? I love Kate's advice to trust yourself and allow yourself to grow in to the role of mother. Having kids is a learning experience and every day you learn something new. Even now that my kids are 7 and 5, I'm still learning what it is to be a mother. 

You can check out all of the golden nuggets of advice over on the SMA Nutrition YouTube channel.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Funny Things My Kids Say #37

Yesterday was a pretty sad day. I was feeling really unwell for starters and then the news broke that Jeremy Clarkson would no longer be on Top Gear and Zayn left One Direction. Of course, there are much more pressing issues in the news and issues that require much more attention than the demise of a TV show and a young boy leaving a boy band but in the spirit of keeping this post light hearted, it was a sad day in our house.

Well, for us adults anyways. Husband was upset that Jeremy Clarkson would no longer be on Top Gear which follows with the question, will Top Gear still be on TV? And I was upset because Zayn was one of my favourites in One Direction (he was a close third to Niall and Harry!) The kids enjoy One Direction music and Miss C in particular has become a bit of a fan. I was feeling a bit sad that I was going to have to tell her that Zayn had chosen to leave the band.

"Zayn has decided to leave One Direction!"

"Why?" asks Miss C.

"I'm not really sure but he's not going to be in the band anymore" I told her.

She paused for awhile and then said, "Oh well, at least Harry and Niall are still there!"

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Boys #TheGallery

With the theme of boys, there really was only ever going to be one boy featured in this post. Z is my one and only boy and is the absolute apple of my eye.

I adore him more than words can describe. I love him to the moon and back and beyond.

He's an amazing boy. Aside from being super smart, he is polite, confident, charming, considerate, loyal, friendly, caring and the most sociable little person I know.

He loves football, reading books and comics, playing Xbox and learning. He soaks up information like a sponge.

He takes after me in that he can be stubborn but then again, which child isn't stubborn?! They all want their own way at some stage in their life.

He wants to be a Doctor when he grows up. He's been saying this for awhile and I can honestly see him realising the dream when he's older. He's got the determination and ambition to do it.

It makes me so proud to be able to call him my son. My boy.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Preposterous Rhinoceros - Book Review

The last book we received to review from Maverick Books is called Preposterous Rhinoceros. It is written by Tracy Gunaratnam and is illustrated by Marta Costa.

The book is about some animals who are getting ready for bed and are awaiting King Lion to come and read them a bedtime story. Sadly, King Lion has lost his voice so the animals need someone else to read to them. Rhinoceros volunteers and the animals think that the idea of Rhinoceros reading is preposterous but they decide to let him have a go. Rhinoceros doesn't know how to read though and he tries many things to read the book. He shakes it until all of the pages fall out, he smothers himself in honey when Toucan suggests he gets stuck right in and he even attempts a key.

Luckily Rhinoceros' friend Shy Salamander does know how to read a book so she teaches Rhinoceros. It took some time but eventually Rhinoceros figured out how to read.

This is a fun picture book which is easy to follow and read with first readers. It's a lovely story about friendship and learning to read.

The book is available to buy from Amazon.

We received this book for the purposes of a review. The opinions expressed are my own. 

Sunday, 22 March 2015

My Sunday Photo 2015 #12


The Week That Was #12

Last Sunday, it was Mother's Day. I got a cup of tea in bed and lovely cards from Z and Miss C. Husband got them their breakfast which meant I got a little bit extra time in bed. I took Miss C to horse riding where she did a fantastic job brushing and then riding Jock. We left horse riding and headed straight to Z's karate competition. He was in a new category with boys who are much better than he is and he knew it. He didn't win any of his fights but he did well at making the boys work for their points. We chilled out for a few hours at home and then headed to swimming lessons. After swimming lessons, we headed out for dinner to our favourite Italian restaurant.

On Monday, it was back to school and college for us. I had a busy day of planning reports and reading guidelines on legislation. Thankfully the day went in fast. I picked the kids up from Z's friend's house and Miss C showed me her monkey she got from her boyfriend at school. She looked very chuffed with it.

On Tuesday, I had an exam at college. I think it went OK but I probably won't find out how I did until next week. I picked the kids up from my friend's house after college to find Miss C had managed to fall again at school and scraped her knee. Later on, whilst playing football outside, Z managed to trip up and bash both of his knees. It was a day for injuries in our household it seemed.

On Wednesday, I finished placement early to go to Miss C's share the learning day at school. The children got to show their parents their Fairyland topic. They were able to make masks, crowns and finger puppets. They could play with LEGO to build their own castles and they could draw pictures from the story of The Three Little Pigs. It was really fun and Miss C loves showing her Papa and I around the class. It was a beautiful day and the kids chose to play outside when they got home. Miss C was feeling optimistic about the weather and wore her shorts and t-shirt! It wasn't that warm!

On Thursday, it was day two of placement and it went it pretty quickly. When I got home, I cleaned the windows whilst waiting for the kids to arrive. We then took the car to get washed. The kids had macaroni for dinner whilst I had a bowl of cereal to keep me going until Husband came in with Chinese food. Miss C was feeling hungry as she had two bowls of macaroni, 2 yogurts and a slice of toast with jam.

On Friday, after dropping the kids off at school, I headed to the shops. I missed the eclipse because I was inside but it was also far too cloudy where we were to see anything. After a morning and afternoon of college work, I headed to school to pick up the kids. Miss C was having her friend over so we stopped off at the park on the way home so they could play. They had chicken dippers and chips for tea and then played outside in the garden.

On Saturday, it was a beautiful day. We dropped Z off at Karate and headed to the shops to get some bits. After lunch, with the washing hung outside to dry, we headed to the park to play and feed the ducks. Z called in for one of his friends and they played football together whilst Miss C played on the swings and slide. Z headed off with Husband to town to get a haircut and Miss C and I stayed on at the park for a little while longer. It was so good to be outdoors and enjoying the sunshine.

The Black and White Photo Project #36

Saturday, 21 March 2015

365 Project 2015 Days 74 - 80

Day 74 - Enjoying chocolate ice cream 
Day 75 - A packed lunch for college
Day 76 - Quick shot of her tablet before dinner
Day 77 - Z loves reading Diary of a Wimpy Kid
Day 78 - Toast and jam for supper
Day 79 - Fun at the park after school
Day 80 - A beautiful Spring day

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Conquering His Everest #CountryKids

Feeling fed up with being stuck indoors, we decided to take advantage of a dry day and head to a nearby park. It's about 15 minutes in the car and the kids love it. Z especially loves this park because he can climb everything! He has become fearless at his grand age of almost 8.

We met up with a friend and her son and the kids ran to the park, full of energy. Poor Husband was feeling rotten but he still manned up for the trip and helped Z conquer his first climb.

Meanwhile, Miss C and my friend's son decide they were going to conquer the slide.

The park was quite busy. I think most of the people there had had the same idea as us. The fresh air was great and the kids loved running around and waiting patiently for the next turn.

Miss C loved the tyre-swing.

And of course, her firm favourite, the regular swings. 

Meanwhile, Z decided he was going to conquer his next Everest...

Husband managed to stay out for an hour and then headed back to the car for a sleep. The kids played on for another 30 minutes. It started to get pretty cold so we called it a day but we were all feeling refreshed and energised after a good play at the park. 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Friday, 20 March 2015

Me & You #15

We braved a trip to the park with the kids when Husband was feeling a bit under the weather. He looked a bit grey in the face and didn't do much but it was very much appreciated by us that he was there. It's great when we do things the four of us. Z did a great job taking this photo of us using my DSLR.

Husband and I had gotten in to the routine of watching Take Me Out on a Saturday night but sadly it finished a few weekends ago. It was great sitting on the couch together, trying to work out which couples would get on and which ones wouldn't. We even watched Take Me Out: The Gossip on ITV2. Rock and roll Saturdays for us! But it's what we enjoy doing and we're spending time together whilst doing it.

Now our Saturdays consist of Masterchef. We both love Masterchef and we both end up hungry before, during and after it. We watched the first few episodes after our Chinese meal and One Direction DVD on Saturday.

We have some exciting nights out planned for our Saturdays in April but until then, we're enjoying our date nights with some yummy treats and some TV.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Chuggington Turbo Charged Tugger DVD - Giveaway

Chuggington follows the adventures of the young trainees, Wilson, Koko and Brewster as they take on new apprenticeships and face exciting challenges that test their courage, speed and determination. With the help, support and guidance of the more experienced Chuggers, they learn positive values, including respect and loyalty, and new skills, such as teamwork and patience, empowering them to be the best trainees they can be.

A brand new DVD adventure is available to buy now. It's called Chuggington Turbo Charged Tugger and features 6 exciting new adventures plus bonus features including Character Sneak Peeks for Chug Patroller Calley and brand new characters - Payce – the high speed tunnel runner from Tootington and Fire Chugger Asher. It also comes with a brand new Story CD that children can listen to. 

Chuggington Turbo Charge Tugger is available to buy from all good retailers at a RRP of £7.99. A great collection of Chuggington shows that are perfect for any Chuggington or train fan. 

I have a copy of the DVD available to giveaway. Simply fill in the rafflecopter form below for your chance to win. You can also enter via my Facebook page Yummy Mummy Flabby Tummy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway is open to UK residents only. The prize is the Chuggington Turbo Charged Tugger DVD. No cash alternative. The giveaway will run from 12am on 19.03.2015 until 23:59 on 02.04.2015. By entering you agree to have your details passed on to the PR sponsoring this giveaway and they will be responsible for sending the prize. Winner will be announced and contacted by March 28th 2015. 

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Green #TheGallery

I can't wait for all the green to start appearing now that Spring is here. I just love seeing leafy full green trees. It makes me feel awake, fresh and full of energy!

Sticky Fingers Photo Gallery

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

A Very Yummy Mother's Day

Mother's Day is a lovely day in our house. I always get a beautiful card from Z and Miss C and they always get me a token gift.I get a cup of tea in bed and Husband deals with the breakfast and dishes.

Miss C made me a card at school. I had found it in her bag on Friday but I left it there to see if she remembered. Of course, she did.

The salted caramel fudge was a bit different but it was tasty. Miss C wasn't keen so I got her bits. Z, like me, has a sweet tooth so he was devouring his.

My absolute favourite part of Mother's Day is going out for dinner. I get a night off from cooking and we always go to our favourite Italian restaurant. I was really looking forward to the meal all week and it didn't disappoint.

For starters I had smoked salmon fishcakes with a salad garnish. They tasted amazing.

For my main course I had fusilli Mexicana which is fusilli pasta with Cajun beef, tomatoes, chili, peppers, onions and a bit of cream to make a sauce. It's a bit spicy but it's delicious. 

I always have a pudding when we go out. It doesn't matter how full I am, I always have a dessert. It's my favourite course! I chose Eton Mess sundae. There was plenty of it which was great because Miss C decided she wanted to share with me. 

The food was so good. I was ready for a nap when we got home. 

We got the kids to bed and then we headed to bed, exhausted from all of the delicious food. 

What a great Mother's Day! 

Monday, 16 March 2015

Brushing My Pony

Miss C absolutely adores horse riding. She only goes once a fortnight just now but from the moment her lesson finishes to the next lesson begins, Miss C is thinking about and talking about how much she loves going.

We've started going to her lesson a bit earlier. She rides at 11am and we've been getting there for about 10:30. It isn't a far drive; less than 10 minutes and we are there but Miss C loves to go in early because the girls have taken a shining to her and love letting her help out with the horses. And Miss C loves to help, especially when it comes to her pony Jock.

Yesterday we took some apple to the stables with us and gave a piece to each horse. Of course, Jock got the most cause he is Miss C's best horse friend. She went in to his stall cause she can't reach up to feed him at his door. Jock was straight over to see her cause he loves apple. She gave him two bits and was about to come out when he started rubbing his head on her shoulder as if to say "more apple please!" It was so cute. She had to give him some more after that.

Then she got to brush him. Jock stood so beautifully and looked so relaxed getting brushed. I had to video them.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Playing Games

During the week, we have a pretty set routine. We don't have much time together because the kids are at school, Husband works long hours and I'm doing 27 hours a week between college and placement. That's a lot compared to what I was doing when I was working part time. The week is filled with homework, college work, house work and work work. We have hardly any time to do fun things.

So at the weekend we make the most of our time together. I'm so glad I don't work weekends anymore and will never (hopefully never anyways) have to work a weekend again once I'm qualified. I love having the full weekend with the kids. We can chill out and enjoy spending time together. 

Last weekend, the kids wanted to play some games. We have cupboards filled with board games, puzzles and jigsaws and I love going through them and picking one out to play. The kids decided on Operation and the honey pot game from ELC. 

We have the Buzz Lightyear Operation (because we love Disney!) and it's really fun to play with the kids. Miss C couldn't watch as Z took his turn. She was scared incase he set the alarm off! 

The honey pot game we have had since Z was a toddler. It's a bit like Kerplunk but with bees instead of balls. It takes an age to set up and then about a minute to play but it's a lot of fun and the kids love it.

Miss C kept her eyes open this time even though she was still anxious not to let any bees fall whether it was her turn or Z's turn.

I think I'll need to make a board game or two a more regular thing at the weekend for the kids. They had so much fun and there wasn't an argument once! 

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