Monday, 31 October 2016

School, Work and Soup

Just like that, the weekend is over and it's time to go back to work and back to school. With the clocks going back an hour, thankfully, it is now bright again when we leave the house. The darker mornings, especially when it's still dark when you leave for work, make it really hard to feel awake and raring to go. 

Poor Charlotte is suffering with a bit of a cold and runny nose, bless her. She was so tired when she got home tonight, I think she would have happily gone to bed there and then. But it was a lot milder this morning so we didn't need to leave with hats and gloves; thick and cosy jackets were enough to keep them warm. 

The snacks and soup were for my friend who takes them to school and picks them up again. I made butternut squash soup as it's the perfect time of year for it, and I saved some for her since she loves it too. 

I wonder what the week will have in store for us!

366 Project 2016 - Day 306

Me & Mine 2016 - October

If September went by quickly, October went even quicker. I can't believe it's November tomorrow. I literally feel like I blinked and's the end of the month again. 

I guess the months are going so fast because I'm working full time. Even with half term, I was still working. I love my job and I think that's why the days just pass like the speed of light and I find myself at 4pm on a Friday afternoon, ready to get home and enjoy the weekend with my family. I celebrated my birthday at the beginning of the month with a lovely meal and a day of shopping. It was perfect!

Husband has been working hard, as always, but finding time to get back into the gym which he really enjoys. He has been looking forward to the return of The Walking Dead and was really shocked by the first episode of the new series. I'm not a fan of shows like it. I can't stand gross, bloody things. Final Destination films are about my limit in terms of scary, yucky movies. 

Zachary recently tried out for the school's football team. He loves playing football but because football classes clash with his karate times, he's never gone. Karate is such a great discipline for him and he really enjoys it too. Hopefully, if he gets picked for the tea, he'll have the opportunity to take part in games with the school without it affecting his Karate. 

Charlotte had a private horse riding lesson this month, as did I, and she really enjoyed it. She is so desperate to have her own horse. She'll un-tack the horses after the lessons, help clean out the stables and generally dotes on the ponies at the riding school. She loves horses so much, she decided to dress up as one for Halloween. Whether we would commit to a horse of our own or not is something that I'm not going to consider until she's a lot older as it would be one for us to share therefore we need something that suits both of us as riders. 

Our photos this month were taken just before we headed to our niece's christening. It was such a beautiful day for a beautiful little girl. The ceremony was lovely and she did so well, making everyone giggle with her cute babbling. 

November, I expect, will be another really quick month. We've a lot on including a visit to Aviemore with some of our best friends, child free, for a weekend of food, drink and a hot tub. I can't wait!

The Me and Mine Project

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Looking Our Sunday Best

It was our niece's christening today. It was a beautiful afternoon and it was a lovely ceremony. It's always great to meet up with the family too. I haven't been to church in years and yet I remembered all the bits you need to do when you go to church!

I took this photo just before we left and I love it. Husband and I don't get the chance to smarten up very often. 

I'm wearing a dress I bought in New Look from the Blue Vanilla range about 3 months ago. When I bought it, it fitted a lot tighter (but not too tight!) than it did when I put it on today. I must have lost weight! It is such a lovely dress. It's a really flattering fit and it has pockets which is fantastic! Husband is wearing a shirt from Burton and a blazer from Next. 

After the christening, we headed to the church hall for some tea, sandwiches and cake. Our niece fell asleep. I don't blame her. There was a lot going on for her little self. Zachary and Charlotte had a great time, eating lots of sweets and running around with the other bigger kids. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 305



Saturday, 29 October 2016

Halloween Treats

The kids got some size of sweetie haul last night after going out trick or treating with their friends. We're sorted for goodies for the next month!

And then it'll be Christmas.

God help my waistline!

366 Project 2016 - Day 304

Friday, 28 October 2016

Almost as Good as a Real Pony. Almost.

What could be almost as good as having your very own real life pony? Having a dressing up costume of a pony! 

Husband picked this up for Charlotte from Tesco for £10 and to her it's the best thing ever. Aside from having her own pony...that's her biggest wish. 

The kids are off trick or treating, guising as we call it in Scotland, and Charlotte is wearing her horse. Zachary decided to go as Dennis the Menance, complete with terrible jokes to tell. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 303

Thursday, 27 October 2016

The Halloween Disco

I remember how excited I used to be about going to a school disco. They usually happened on a Friday night and there was always such a buzz on the Friday afternoon during school. 

The kids have started going to discos at their school which is fun for them but a bit of a hassle for us parents since they split the disco into infants and upper school. It means I'm back and forth from the school twice per child. 

Charlotte wanted to dress up as Merida, minus the curly hair. There certainly was nothing scary about her costume except how cute she looked. 

Zachary wasn't fussed about getting dressed up although I think he wished he had when he got to school and saw his friends all dressed up. 

Tomorrow it's my turn to get dressed up for our Halloween party. I'm going with an 80's theme. Wish me luck crimping my hair tonight. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 302

The Snowflake Mistake - Book Review

Maverick Books sent us a new title from their picture book range to review. The Snowflake Mistake is the newest picture book from author Lou Treleaven, who also wrote Professor McQuark and the Oojamaflip. It is beautifully illustrated by Maddie Frost.

The story is set in a palace high in the sky where the Snow Queen and her daughter, Princess Ellie, live. The Snow Queen makes sure that her snowflake machine runs like clockwork, producing very pretty, very identical snowflakes. One day she has to run an errand so Princess Ellie is left in charge. When she should have been paying attention, she was too busy daydreaming and playing with her friends the birds, missing the instructions her mum gave her for running the snowflake machine. When it all goes wrong, Princess Ellie calls on her friends to help her make snowflakes. They aren't identical like her mum's but they are just as beautiful, if not better.

This is a really lovely story that is perfect for a winter or Christmas story collection. It gives a really positive message about being unique and not everything being the same shape, size or style. It is written in rhyme, making it great for children to practise their rhyming words and sounds.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

My Little Monkey

The weather has definitely taken a turn for the colder and the darker mornings are making it harder to get out of bed. However the kids are loving being able to wear hats and gloves again.

Charlotte got her monkey hat from Bello last year and she's been asking to wear it for ages. It's far too big for her head but she doesn't care. She's such a cute little monkey!

366 Project 2016 - Day 301

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

366 Project 2016 - Day 300

Tuesday is my late night at work so I have to make something quick and easy for dinner when I get home. Pasta is definitely a firm favourite and my go to dish whenever I'm stuck or in a hurry. Tonight we had farfalle in a spinach, tomato and ricotta sauce. It was delicious!

On a separate note, I can't believe we only have 66 days left in 2016! Where has this year gone?

Monday, 24 October 2016

Reading is not my Favourite

Charlotte is not a fan of literacy homework. She can read but she doesn't enjoy it which means a reading book with an average of 32 pages can take almost an hour to read. I wouldn't let her read a book for that long so we've never tested that theory but given that it can take about 20 minutes to read half of the book...

She loves books and reading at bedtime but she really doesn't enjoy her school books. I'm not keen on Biff and Chip myself though so I can understand where she is coming from. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 299

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Cakes in Costa

Charlotte had an appointment with the opticians so they could check her prescription was OK, which it was, so after a long wait and all the messing about with her eyes, we decided a visit to Costa for some cake and hot chocolate was in order.

How the kids managed to eat a triple chocolate muffin each without feeling sick is beyond me; I was feeling sick just looking at them! But they managed to scoff them and I enjoyed my hot chocolate. It was so cold outside, it really did the trick of warming me up.

I also got myself a new phone today. I have had my S4 for over 3 years now and whilst the phone itself still works great, the camera quality has really deteriorated and my photos are rubbish quality. I love Samsung so I stuck with them and got the S6. I'm not one for changing my phone as soon as a new one comes out or at the end of a fixed contract so the S6 is perfect for me. I can't wait to start taking photos with it as the camera is so much better!

366 Project 2016 - Day 297

Friday, 21 October 2016

Signed Katie Morag Books

Charlotte was so excited to have all 6 of her Katie Morag early reader books signed by the author, Mairi Hedderwick. She loves reading her books and she had the opportunity to meet Mairi recently. She signed all 6 of her books, which was really kind of her. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 296

Letters From Santa - Review and Promo Code

I can't believe in 9 weeks time, we'll be on single figure countdown to Christmas Day. It is one of my most favourite times of the year and I'm really looking forward to spending it with Husband and the kids.

In the build up to Christmas, we decorate the house, write Christmas cards, buy gifts for friends but most importantly, the kids write their letters to Santa Claus and I think it's wonderful when he returns one to them, completely personalised and through the post box. The kids get really excited if there is ever any post for them so having the opportunity to order a letter from Santa is fantastic.

I recently received two letters from Santa for the kids. They haven't seen them yet, of course, because it's a bit early but they came all the way from the Magic Santa Letter office, complete with colouring in sheets, Santa Stop Here Signs and Magical Reindeer Food to sprinkle in the garden on Christmas Eve.

Included with the activity pack is a Good Child certificate and the all important letter from Father Christmas himself.

The letter is so gorgeous; really beautifully written and on scroll effect paper. Santa completely personalises the letter for your child too.

This full letter and activity pack costs £7.99 and is Magic Santa Letter's most popular order.

There are 2 other letter types Santa can send to your child; one with a letter and certificate only, priced at £3.99 and one for Babies' First Christmas, priced at £5.99.

If you'd like to order a letter for your child then please do use the code LR30OFF as this will get you 30% off your order. There are a number of dates you can select to have your letter posted on however the last posting date to ensure your letter is with your child for Christmas is Monday 19th December 2016.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

It's Getting Colder

As we set off for school this morning, Charlotte asked if she could wear her Hello Kitty earmuffs. We've already got our thick winter coats on but so far those have been enough to keep them warm. However it looks like we might need to break out the gloves, hats and scarves soon. 

Never mind Autumn....Winter is coming!

366 Project 2016 - Day 294

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Presentation Practise

Charlotte has been practising hard for her presentation at school on the red squirrel. She had to find out facts about this cute little guy and then draw a picture of him. Obviously that's a photo on her front cover, not her drawing. 

I remember doing things like this at school and finding it really fun. There was one year I collected a lot of information and leaflets from the SSPCA and did a presentation on animal cruelty. It wasn't even part of my homework or a topic, I just wanted to do it to raise money for them. One of my classmates asked me what two dogs would do if they had been abandoned and had no food. I told them that the bigger dog would eat the smaller dog. Thankfully there is no talk of squirrels eating one another in Charlotte's talk. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 293

Autumnal Picks from JD Williams

As much as I love summer days where the sun beats down and we can enjoy cold drinks and ice creams, wearing pretty dresses and flip flops, Autumn is one of my favourite seasons when it comes to fashion and putting together outfits, not only for the kids but for myself too.

JD Williams are an online retailer with a massive selection of clothing, footwear, accessories and lingerie. They asked me if I'd like to pick something from their Autumn range to review and I couldn't wait to see what they had on offer.

Autumn, I feel, is about having a few staple pieces in your wardrobe and styling them with different accessories. A good Autumn wardrobe should have a pair of jeans, a coat, a cosy jumper and a pair of boots. I decided to pick out new items for myself from their selection of knitwear and boots.

The first item I received is this black and white chunky knit jumper in a size Small. It is so cosy and thick that you could get away with just wearing it on top of a vest top on the warmer Autumn days. It's a jumper I can see myself in whilst cuddled up with the kids on Christmas Eve, watching The Polar Express. It looks like it might be a bit itchy but it really isn't. In terms of price, this jumper was in the sale but the original price was very reasonable.

The second item I received is a pair of Hunter wellies. I love my Hunter wellies; they are so comfy and durable. My last pair is still going strong however I use them for horse riding and I wanted to get a separate pair to wear right through until Spring. I decided to go for the short gloss wellies. I love the gloss look but the reason I chose short wellies is because I find them easier to drive in. My taller Hunter boots often get caught on the bottom of my seat which isn't great when you are changing gear, braking or accelerating! The wellies have adjustable straps so they fit around your calf comfortably.

Hunter wellies aren't on the cheap side; these cost £80 from JD Williams, however they are so well made, the price is justified by the quality. I've always bought the kids' Hunter wellie boots because they wear so well; Charlotte ends up with Zachary's old wellie boots which she can then use for horse riding too.

JD Williams offer a next day delivery service on many items on their site which is great if you are after something fabulous in a hurry. Next month they will have their Black Friday Sale so if you are on the lookout for Autumn/Winter clothing to update your wardrobe, make sure to check them out.

Monday, 17 October 2016

Fun at the Science Centre

Husband took the day off work as it was an in-service day for me and he took the kids to the science centre in Glasgow. Funnily enough, I was at a STEM training day, so I was kind of doing the same thing as them.

They had a lot of fun. Zachary had been before on a school trip but it was Charlotte's first time. She wasn't really excited about it because it doesn't involve horses, but in the end, she had a brilliant time.

Here's how their trip went in photos:

Playing with the sand.

A spot of engineering.

Touching a real lamb's heart at a live dissection. Bleugh!

They didn't manage to get around the full centre and they were there from it opening at 10am. It cost £48 for them to get in, visit the Planetarium and the I-Max, but they had such a great time and did a lot of learning. 

366 Project 2016 - Day 292

Sunday, 16 October 2016

The Simplest of Sundays

It has been such a lazy Sunday today. We didn't get out of bed until almost 12, got dressed after 1 and lazed about for most of the day. Charlotte and I did head out for our private horse riding lesson at 3, which was fantastic, but otherwise we spent the full day at home.

I made steak pie for dinner and invited my FIL up for his dinner. I served him the steak pie he taught me how to make and he ate it all so it must have been good! For pudding we had good old Vienetta!

We definitely needed an easy Sunday to recharge, ready for the week ahead.

366 Project 2016 - Day 291



Saturday, 15 October 2016

Autumnal Outfit of the Day

I'm still holding out hope for some sunnier days by wearing plimsolls but I think they could be long gone now. I just love how comfy they are and how great they look with skinny jeans. 

My top is from New Look. I love the colour; perfect for this season. 

My jeans are from Miss Selfridge. They are ankle grazers although I'm a bit short so they cover mine! They are so soft and comfy, and they fit great. 

My plimsolls are from Primark. They were £5 I think. Bargain! 

366 Project 2016 - Day 290

Sibling Moments #34

The camera in my phone is definitely on its way out, so excuse these pretty grainy photos. I haven't bothered to upgrade my phone since it has been working fine but I do notice the quality of my photos not being as good as they used to be. But it's so handy to just snap a photo, capture a moment, with your phone isn't it? Carrying a camera around is far too bulky but I might need to start doing that.

The kids have been on half term this week and have been enjoying the holiday clubs whilst I've been working. They went ice skating, swimming, played badminton, went to soft play and generally had a lot of fun. Their Papa dropped them off for me every morning and I finished in time to pick them up. But before they left the house, I let them watch Pokemon until it was time for them to leave.

Their Papa saw how much they love watching Pokemon and brought them 4 cuddly toys that used to belong to their Uncle. Don't ask me which ones they are because I only know Pikachu and Squirtle because he was my favourite. Oh and Snorlax...I was a bit of a Snorlax myself back in the day.

I love that they have a common interest other than Minecraft. They love looking at their Pokemon cards together, playing with Zachary's Pokedex and, of course, cuddling up in bed to play Minecraft surrounded by Pokemon.

The Me and Mine Project

Friday, 14 October 2016

Dressing up Fun

To celebrate the last day of the half term holidays at her club, Charlotte dressed up as a witch for their fancy dress party. She looked very cute!

I think I picked this costume up from George at Asda last year or it may have been Tesco. Whichever one it was, it wasn't expensive at all.

366 Project 2016 - Day 289

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