Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Thank you for a wonderful summer little ones


Hello, I hope you have had a nice day. Today is my last day off . The younger children have two more days off, my fourteen year old has one day left and Liam still has three weeks.
I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank them for a wonderful summer holiday.

Thank you Liam for all our chats about your future and life in general.

Thank you baby girl for our shopping trips together. It has been so much fun!

Thank you my darlings for our days out together

I love you darling but next time you go on camp RING YOUR MOTHER!!!

Thank you all for being the kindest, most thoughtful and loving children in the world. I am so lucky to have you in my world.

Hears to October half term.

Take care xx

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

And the active family award goes to...

Hello dear friends,

Its been a busy and fun few days in our neck of the woods with a picnic at Hanningfield Reservoir, our nearest Wildlife Trust Reserve, and family bike rides to keep the children, and ourselves of course, entertained. (Ben even managed to rescue a child that had got stuck up a tree, good deed of the day done - tick).

There are Wildlife Reserves all over the UK run by the Wildlife Trust and they are well worth a visit, as you enter they just ask for a donation (the ones in Essex suggest £5.00 for a family) and the money is put back into conserving wildlife habitats among other things like educating visitors and protecting animals that are at risk.

We had an enjoyable day walking amongst the bushes, trees and looking at the birds and insects.

We sat in the observatory and watched the birds, swans and ducks on the reservoir with our nine year olds binoculars. We were even lucky enough to see a beautiful deer hovering in the bushes.

At lunchtime, we found an area near a pond with picnic tables and the children were delighted that several brown rats decided to join us for lunch, needless to say that mummy was not quite so thrilled!

The thing that I love most about days out is that it brings us together. Even our fourteen year old, that has been known to sit in the playroom on the Xbox and not speak to anyone, wanders along chatting and playing with his younger brothers and sister.

It was a delightful day that ticked all the boxes.

We have also been taking the children out for daily bike rides, its good exercise for us and the children love riding their bikes. We are thinking about riding to and from school when the youngest one is proficient enough so that we can get home quicker.

I think he will be needing a bigger bike soon. (My baby is growing!)

Have you done anything fun this weekend?

Take care xx

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Pizza and Movie night

Good evening,

Have you had a nice relaxed Saturday?

Things around here have been quite chilled out, in fact I actually woke up at 11.15 today (oh the benefits of having children that can get their own breakfast). In my defence of being a bad mum, it has been so hard to sleep in this heat!

So, after a late start we decided not to go out today but to have an easy meal and movie evening. The kids voted on Pizza for dinner and the movie was Transylvania 2, which has been a much awaited film in our house.

I headed off to Tesco as they have a pizza counter where they make the pizza's fresh while you wait.

We got a variety of Pizza's including Meat Feast, Cheese and Tomato and Hawaiian which everyone happily helped themselves to

Then we all settled down and watched the movie together, I don't want to give the story away but it has some very funny parts in it and jokes that will appeal to adults.

I provided the children with some snacks while they were watching the movie. Do you like the cones? They are perfect for holding little snacks and treats for children.

Have a nice evening and take care xx

Friday, 26 August 2016

Friday Fun

Good Evening, I hope you have had a nice couple of days.

We have spent the last couple of days having fun and spending time together. Do you like our peg Eiffel tower?
We built this rather than hang the washing out, it did get put out eventually much to the children disgust who accused me of destroying Eddie Eiffel...

Yesterday we treated ourselves to a frugal cinema trip. In the morning I popped onto the Odeon website, the children had said they would like to see either Finding Dory or Alice through the looking glass, when I put these into the online calculator there was a 10am showing of Alice through the looking glass for £2.50 each. Of course at that bargain price I booked it immediately and we trotted straight off into town.

We decided as we had a few minutes to spare before the film started to go into Poundland, we got four bottles of drink which were 2 for £2.00 and the children got a pack of sweets for £1.00 each costing £5.00.

The film was excellent in fact all three of the little ones said "We must buy that when it comes out on DVD".  Quite often when we go to the cinema the children enjoy it but I have been known to get a swift elbow in the ribs from the child sitting next to me for snoring but on this occasion I thoroughly enjoyed it too and could watch it again (quite an accolade coming from the adult who struggles to sit through anything that is longer than an hour).

After the film had finished we decided to have a wander around town and get some ideas for Christmas and our eight year old had some birthday money to spend if he saw anything nice.
The first shop we looked around was Lush, my daughter is obsessed with this shop, there are lots of testers to try out and we tried popcorn flavoured lip scrub and came very close to buying the coconut shampoo which we all decided we could have eaten but refrained as we have quite a lot of shampoo in the cupboard. The boys decided they would like to all club their pocket money together and get this for their sister or Christmas (because she brings sunshine into their lives). I love that they are so thoughtful and kind to each other, I hope it never changes.

We then went into Paperchase and I heard lots of Oohs and aahs at all the stationery, bags and lunch bags. Our eight year old decided he wanted to buy himself a diary that he could log what he has done each day in (poor boy takes after me).

Our nine year old saw a backpack that he wanted to buy himself for school, he still has a little bit of birthday money left, but it would have only left him with £2.00 so I advised him to go home and think about whether he wants to spend £25.00 on a bag for school that will get ruined when his other bag still has lots of wear left in it.

It is a nice bag!

We then walked to the market and the children got a portion of chips each and I got a Ham salad sandwich and we went and sat in the park to eat. It was a lovely end to a nice day.

Sometimes its the simple things in life that make for a special day.

I hope you have a nice weekend, were looking to further our fun.

Take care xx

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

A lovely afternoon with mum

Good Evening.

I hope you have had a nice day. It been very hot here today and the children didn't want to go anywhere or do anything even go to the park. They spent most of the day laying on the laminate floor because it was cooler than anywhere else and took it in turns to go up and have a cold bath. Seriously they are heat lightweights, says she, who currently has a headache probably caused by the heat!  

Mum popped in mid morning after her visit to the opticians and we sat in the lounge drinking water and eating egg mayonnaise sandwiches. We would normally sit at the table in the conservatory but as soon as she walked in the door the children jumped on her and said "Nana, you will melt, don't go in there". We spent a lovely couple of hours chatting about how it is very difficult to buy clothes to fit her as she is so tiny whilst I have the opposite problem (lets not go into that) and various other things.

I'm looking forward to taking the children out for the morning tomorrow, we are going to pop into the town centre and we might go to the cinema before we buy the dreaded school uniform for back to school. I have been lucky enough to be given twelve new school shirts from a friend who bought them for her son but they don't fit him luckily my two little boys are the same size and they fit both of them. Big Yay for bargains!

We won't be joined by Liam as he has work or by my fourteen year old as he is meeting a young lady in town who he has been friends with from Cadets for a couple of years but has not seen during the summer holidays as she has been in Spain for the last four weeks. He has already had a shower and taken himself off to bed. He is quite excited!

I find it incredibly difficult to know what to cook on a hot day. What do you do for dinner when its hot? Yesterday we just had sandwiches but I didn't want the children to not have a proper meal or a second day so this morning I put mince and tomato sauce in the slow cooker and made a lasagne with salad and rustic cheese and tomato bread. It worked out very well, the house didn't become overheated because the oven wasn't put on and dinner was ready and done nice and early so we could set up the Anki Overdrive and play racing games until bedtime.

Have a nice relaxing evening, I'm off to watch 'The great British bake off'.

Take care xx

Tuesday, 23 August 2016



Good Evening.

Thank you for all the lovely comments that you have all given me recently about how organised and focussed I have been during this holiday. I am a week and two days away from going back to work and I'm starting to slack.

  • No organising has been done since Friday
  • No running has been done since Friday
  • I have not logged my food for two days
I just need to organise my bedroom now which doesn't involve too much work and I think will be done tomorrow. I do intend to carry on running once I go back to work and I am struggling with what to eat.

The last week of the holiday I intend to spend having fun with the children, they have been so good this holiday with no expectations at all but now its time for them to take centre stage.
  • They have asked to go on a picnic - the weather is meant to be nice on Thursday
  • They would love to see Finding Dory or Alice in Wonderland at the Cinema
  • They would like to go swimming
I would love to take them away for a few days but that's not likely to happen this holiday but now that I will be working full time maybe we can organise something delightful for next summer.

In view of this I guess I had better carry on with the diet and exercise just in case...

Have a lovely evening and take care xx

Monday, 22 August 2016

Happy Birthday baby - 8 Today!

Hello dear friends.

Today the youngest member of the house and my baby turned 8! Time has flown by and putting eight candles on his birthday cake felt a little bit surreal.

Birthdays in our house are never a massive affair but the aim is for the birthday boy/girl to finish the day realising how special they are to every other member of the family.

The day began by a couple of presents being opened (the majority are saved until daddy comes home)

This was followed up by the children going off to play with the little ones new Xbox game for an hour while I had a shower and cleaned up from breakfast.

We then headed of to the park for an hour before popping to the shops to pick up dinner which was chosen by the birthday boy and resulted in us all having hot dogs with lattice fries and onion rings. (Yes even me, oops sorry diet but I did refrain from having any birthday cake).

When we got home we watched Zootropolis together but someone forgot to dish out the popcorn...

Then daddy came home and the rest of the presents were opened and the true playtime began as his main present was the car game Maki overdrive (I will do a review on this in the next few days as Christmas is just on the horizon and I can see this becoming a family favourite)

Uncle Jason and Auntie Sarah came over and joined in with the fun. And then it was time for birthday cake.
And that brought to the end the final one of the kids birthdays for this year. It didn't cost a fortune but there was lots of laughter, hugs and smiles and they all went off to bed feeling happy and contented.
I hope you've had a great day and take care xx

Saturday, 20 August 2016

A chilled out weekend

Hello dear friends, we are at another weekend!

I'm very sorry that I didn't update you yesterday I spent most of the day and evening sorting out my two youngest boys bedroom. We cleared out their toys resulting in a box full that we will try and sell and then if we are unsuccessful donate to the charity shop.  They are getting older now with the youngest turning eight on Monday and they have decided that they want to keep their sets of things like cars, Lego, Yu-gi-oh and Pokemon card sets and their board games. This has lightened the load massively. The boys helped to wash their walls and skirting boards and although we still have bits to do it is looking much better.


I woke up early this morning but because I knew I didn't have a lot to do I laid in bed reading my book for an hour. It was lovely to come down to a clean and tidy home and knowing all I really had to do is put some washing on. Huge Yay!

Food and Exercise

Breakfast - Yoghurt

Lunch - Tuna Sandwich and a few Pringles

Dinner - Chicken and salad wrap

I haven't been very hungry today so I only ended up having one wrap and I had to push myself to have breakfast and lunch. We didn't go for a run today but my nine year old and I have done sits ups and hula hooping - wow that's hard work.

Money Matters

I have been to the shops twice today and still forgotten to buy toilet roll! The first time that I went I bought Coffee, milk, wraps, chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, Marmite and cream cheese costing £23.00, the second time I went to the shop I bought four tubs of Pringles, two bottles of coke, Apple juice, Ribena, Vimto, a birthday cake for my son, a lunch box and drinks bottle to give to my son for his birthday. I bought most of these items for my sons birthday tea on Monday but they were on special offer and I didn't want them to sell out. I also got 75% off the birthday cake so it cost £3.00 the total price was £33.00 but £11.00 of this was on the lunch box and drinks bottle that he needed anyway. As my childrens birthdays are mainly in the summer holidays I tend to buy them quite a few back to school items which I know seems mean but it enables me to buy the ones they really like rather than the basic ones.

Well that's it from me for today I'm off to enjoy the last two days of the Olympics, I will miss it a lot as I'm not a big television person because I have a very short attention span and get bored easily but I have thoroughly enjoyed the last three weeks of sport.

Have a good evening and take care xx

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Thursdays Update

Hell lovely people, I hope you are having a lovely day. Our day has been full of our usual activities but as normal it has been another nice day.


  • Clean one of the windows in the conservatory (two to go but there is a spider on the next window YUK!)
  • Sorted my two little mens wardrobe and chest of drawers.
  • Cleaned the kitchen
  • Vacuumed downstairs
  • Dusted downstairs
  • Vacuumed the stairs
  • Cleaned the bathroom
Sorting through the boys wardrobes made me realise that the only new items that they need for this winter is a couple of pairs of trousers. Plus a couple of bits of new uniform again mainly trouser.

Food and Exercise

  • Breakfast - Rice krispies and skimmed milk
  • Lunch - Spaghetti hoops on toast
  • Dinner - Gammon, handful of chips, lettuce, tomato, cucumber, pineapple
  • Snacks - yoghurt
We went for our usual run tonight but I found it really hard work today, I'm not sure whether this was because we went fairly soon after having dinner.

Money spent

We walked to the shop mid morning and bought some food for lunch and dinner this cost £15.00 and consisted of:-

6 Gammon steaks
Oven chips
Pineapple rings
Milk x2
Spaghetti hoops x2
wets for the children


The children worked really hard on heir maths today so I decided to treat them to some sweets. I don't let them have sweets very often as they were getting too used to having them on a regular basis.

I have been doing some lunch box planning and discussing with the children what they like to eat at lunchtime and whether they would be able to start organising their own lunches (after a little push from Nathalie ha ha).

School dinners for the little ones works out to £10.00 per week each and quite a lot more than that for my fourteen year old. My almost eight year old will not have school dinners under any circumstances so it seems easier to do packed lunches for them all as it has to be bought for one anyway. I have been researching the best places for buying lunch items at a good price, its currently looking like the best deal would be to do an online shop from poundland as they sell most of the healthy snack items at a much better price than the Supermarkets. It also works out the best place to buy bottles of water and cartons of drink.

I will keep you updated as I continue my research.

Have a lovely evening and take care xx

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Lazy Lazy Wednesday

Mmmm, looks good hey. This is an ironic photo because every morning no matter what time Ben leaves for work I get up and make him a coffee and give him some lunch to take for work but not this morning, no this lazy person slept through the alarm and didn't get up until 8.30! So this is what a nice morning coffee looks like if your lucky enough to have someone get one for you. Ha ha

I must admit I have paid the price for oversleeping this morning, I have been tired all day. Why does that happen?


    • Cleaned out a kitchen cupboard
    • Changed one of my sons beds (I was given a new duvet and pillows by Bens mum)
    • Cleaned the kitchen
    • Vacuumed downstairs
    • Hung the washing out
    • Wiped the bathroom over
    • Vacuumed the stairs
As you can see I didn't actually get very much done.

Food and Exercise
  • Breakfast - Rice Kristie and skimmed milk
  • Lunch - Chicken salad sandwich and bag of discos
  • Dinner - Tuna and cheese salad with a mango yoghurt for desert
  • Snacks - none today
Exercise - We went for a run this evening. It was just myself and my nine year old and it was really enjoyable as he chats when he runs.

I have logged my food and exercise on my fitness pal and I was about 400 calories under my allowance. I did weigh myself this morning after everything that I said yesterday and I am back to what I was the day before so I don't really know what that little blip was about.

Money Matters

I went to the supermarket this evening as I was running low on snacks and the children were getting a bit forlorn that we had no goodies. So £33.00 was spent in the supermarket tonight which is fine because I haven't actually gone shopping this week.

One item sold on Ebay today. Yay!


I printed off some empty multiplication grids today and all the children (apart from Liam of course) completed one. We are going to do this every day until they go back to school. We time this so I'm hoping to see a big improvement.

My nine year old finished his homework (he is the one that dislike doing homework the most so I'm very impressed).

I think I'm going to go up and have a bath and read my book for a while.

Have a lovely evening and take care xx

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Daughters bedroom - complete

Good Evening. I hope you have had a nice day.

  • Three conservatory windows cleaned
  • One kitchen cupboard cleaned
  • Daughters old curtains taken down, pole cleaned and new curtains put up (I've had these for over a year)
  • Daughters bedding washed and put back on the bed
  • Daughters bedroom polished
  • All make up taken out and make up bags put in washing machine (daughters)
  • Daughters bedroom vacuumed
It has taken me a few days to sort and clean my daughters bedroom as I had to sort out her clothes (she had age 6+ clothes in there). She sorted out what books and DVDs she wanted to keep and what we could either sell or take to the charity shop. We sorted through all her drawers, I do need to still empty one drawer that has all her old princess dresses in but I want to wash these and either sell them or give them to the school for dress ups in the early years department. My daughters curtains were a disgrace she had got make up all over the back of them which is why I was a bit nervous about putting her new ones in there and why it has taken me so long but we discussed how she is ten now and how she needs to look after her things because otherwise she will earn the next ones. (maid ahoy ha ha)

Another room complete just our bedroom, the youngest boys bedroom, the kitchen and the conservatory to go but as you know I am doing the kitchen and conservatory as I go along, rooms like that are easier broken down into small bits.

Food and Exercise

I was a bit upset this morning because I got on the scales and it said I had put on three pounds, I have stayed within my 1280 calorie allowance every day for the last 21 days so I could not work out how this had happened, then I realised I had fallen into weighing myself every day again and this always disheartens me so I sat down and had a cup of coffee and I good think about why I was allowing myself to feel this way and why I wanted to lose weight in the first place.

  • Because I was feeling unwell and wanted to feel better - I feel much better than I did when I started, I have much more energy (I realise I am off work too so this help)
  • I want to be around for my children longer - I'm not in control of this but I'm quite an active person anyway and by doing regular exercise, trying to lose weight and eating healthily it should make a difference
  • I want to look half decent on the odd occasion I go out - I've already lost 11 (well maybe 8) lbs so I'm won't look worse even if I don't look better
So in conclusion there is no rush to achieve any goals because I am doing this for me so if I do put on a few pounds as long as I continue trying its not changing anything and I need to weigh myself a maximum of once a week. I did put my measurements on my fitness pal and I will check those every month to see if I'm losing inches.

  • Breakfast - 1oz Rice Kristie with skimmed milk
  • Lunch - Egg and tomato sandwich and bag of discos
  • Dinner - Ham, new potatoes, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, spring onion, Sweetcorn
  • Snacks - Mint Cornetto
I allowed myself a mint Cornetto as a snack today because when I put my food into my fitness pal I was 300 under my allowance and it advised me that I hadn't eaten enough so I thought I deserved a treat.

Money Matters

The money that I spent today was £10.50 on bread, coffee, new potatoes, Sweetcorn and milk

Lots of items were listed on Ebay today, they were put on in bundles to avoid too many listing charges, I also listed some items on Facebook sales. Hopefully they will sell.

Have a lovely evening, I'm going to sit and watch the olympic cycling.

Take care xx