Sunday, 31 August 2014

A Perfect Sunday

My perfect Sundays are spent having a very relaxed family morning in our pyjamas and then all helping to prepare a lovely Sunday roast. Whilst I love going out and eating (with no washing up), there is something very satisfying and delicious about cooking your own Sunday lunch.   

When we first started living together many moons ago, the thought of cooking a Sunday lunch was a very foreign concept to us, but after many practices, we have finally got our own little foolproof recipe for a perfect Sunday lunch.  Here's how we love to cook our Sunday dinner...and it really is so so easy! Baba is always hovering around the kitchen, so I tend to give her a spatula and saucepan and let her loose banging and stirring some water! 

So, first things first, your meat.  We have gone for  a beef joint today. I hate wasting food and as there is only three of us a big beef joint can be too much.  So, I tend to cut the joint in half and freeze one half for another time.  Take your beef out of the fridge about an hour before cooking so it comes to room temperature. Then drizzle with olive oil and season.  Most beef joints have instructions on their label as to how long to cook them for and I'm not exactly an expert.  But for this size of beef we cooked it at 200C for about 1 hour 45 minutes. When it is cooked you want to take it out of the oven let it rest for about 20 minutes before serving.      

Whilst the beef is cooking, we prep the vegetables.  For the three of us I use about three carrots and two parsnips.  Wash, peel and chop, then place them in foil. Pop on a couple of sprigs of thyme, drizzle with olive oil, and then seal them in the foil so its like a little parcel. Place on a baking tray and put them in the oven with the beef for 40 to 50 minutes. 

Next up, the potatoes.  Again, wash, peel and chop.  Boil in a pan of salted water for about 10-15 minutes.  You want them a little soft, but not so soft they break up.  Now you can oven cook these alongside the vegetables and beef but our oven isn't that big and we find the temperature for the potatoes isn't compatible with the meat, so we microwave oven them instead.  To do this, place the potatoes on your microwave proof plate, dot with butter and then we cook on the convection setting at 220C, warm for 25 minutes.  Turn the potatoes regularly and cook until browned.  

Now my favourite, Yorkshire puddings.  I cant believe we used to buy pre-made Yorkshire puddings...they are so easy to make and home made are delicious!!!!  To make 12 Yorkshire puddings mix 70g plain flour with 2 eggs.  Then gradually pour in 100ml of milk.  You want a lump free batter.  Pour this into a jug and then drizzle a little sunflower oil into each hole on a 12 hole muffin tray.  Pop the tin in the oven just to heat through and then pour the batter evenly into the tins.  Pop into the oven at 210C (fan) for about 20-25 minutes.  We tend to put these into the oven when the meat is out and resting. 

Finally, you need some gravy.  And this is soooo easy to do! You take the juices from the beef pan and pour them into a saucepan.  Add about a tablespoon of flour and keep stirring on a low heat so it thickens.  Then add about 150ml of beef stock (depending on how much gravy you want) and stir this in, season, and keep stirring on a low heat.   

And ta-dah...a deliciously simple Sunday roast to enjoy. Give it a go and let me know what you think! Happy Sunday!

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.” Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance.

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Super Busy Mum

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Seventeen Crushed Foil Nail Effects

The Seventeen line in Boots has had a bit of a re-brand of late, and I have to admit, I quite like it.  It has certainly made me have a closer look at their products, which I seemed to bypass before.  I have come to the conclusion that I become like a magpie in Boots, and when I spied this polish, it went straight into my basket. 

Its the Seventeen crushed foils nail effect matte polish in Gold. 

I don't know what I was expecting, but I think I thought there was an under shade alongside the small specks of gold, as it does look quite milky in the bottle.  But apparently there isn't as once I had applied it and it had dried, the only thing visible on my nails was the gold. 

When applying the polish you have to make sure the specks are evenly spread onto the nail, and I think you definitely need two coats to get a good effect.  Once on, I liked the look overall, but I did begin to wonder if it looked a bit like I had golden nail polish that was chipping.  I think this polish would look alot better on top of another shade maybe. 

For only £3.99 its a good buy, and I will definitely be cracking this out at Christmas!  Uh oh....I think I just said the C word in August!!! Sorry, its this cold weather! Will try and refrain from further C talk...for now!

Have you tried anything from the re-branded Seventeen line? Any recommendations?

As always thanks for reading!

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Tuesday, 26 August 2014

On a train, going nowhere

There is nothing more random than sitting in the middle of nowhere, tucking into a gorgeous Italian lunch in an actual static railway carriage.

This lovely little restaurant called Carriages, near Buxton, is where we went to one rainy Sunday with Baba and some lovely friends from Manchester. The restaurant itself is themed like an actual railway station with lots of old railway and station memorabilia. So you enter the platform for drinks and then you 'board the train', to sit and eat your meal in these wonderful cosy actual rail carriages, with beautiful rolling green countryside all around you.  

The food is amazing.  You can choose from authentic Italian meals to a traditional Sunday lunch.  I had the salmon which was simply delicious and my husband had the steak.  All plates were returned to the kitchen empty, and as per usual I ate all my food before taking any pictures. Sorry! Prices are pretty average and you can check out their menus and website here. 

Baba thought this place was absolutely amazing, and the lovely and charming owners treated her like a little princess! She got to wear a station masters hat, she got to run havoc in the carriages, and she got brought biscuits and treats to her little hearts content.  This place is certainly child friendly.  They even gave her an 'I love Sicily' bib. And the owners were also happy for her to have a small plate of any dish, or just have a side plate to sample all of our food (which she did!). 

Couple the randomness of eating in a train restaurant with such lovely owners, and we had the most perfect afternoon at carriages, eating, drinking and catching up.  If you are looking for somewhere a bit different this weekend and you are in the area, or even fancy a drive to gorgeous Buxton, definitely give this place a try.  Any train enthusiasts will love it and any small children will find it absolutely fascinating! Or if you are neither of those and fancy some good food and grappa, go,go,go! 

Thanks for reading,

post signature Tasty Tuesdays on

Saturday, 23 August 2014

My running journey so far

First of all, I have to say, I was never a runner as a child.  I can vividly remember at primary school having to run around the playground for cross-country.  I HATED it.  I wasn't the one at the back crying, (that was always someone else, usually a girl). And whilst I wasn't that girl, to be fair I wasn't that far ahead of her. 

As an adult, it hadn't really crossed my mind to run, unless I was speed shopping in town at Christmas.  But three years ago, I decided that I wanted to be fitter and healthier and I started running.  I began very slowly, and over the course of about 6 months, I was able to run quite fair distances of between 6-9 miles.  But that is where my running peaked and abruptly stopped.  Another reason I had started running was because I wanted to be the fittest I could be to help me get pregnant.  And it worked! So as soon as I had started, I hung up my cheap running trainers, as I just did not feel comfortable running whilst pregnant.

Fast forward three years and a baby later.  I had started to feel that I wanted to do a bit more exercise and get into shape a little bit, and also I wanted to see if my body could actually do those runs I had done pre-baby.  So one cold morning in March, I popped my trainers on and off I went.  The resounding answer was NO, my body could not do those runs. I returned home about 20 minutes later after only managing 1 minute of running to 2 minutes walking.  I thought my husband might have to call me an Ambulance.  Jeez, I had lost it!! After moaning for about an hour on the state of my fitness and woe is me, my husband kindly reminded me I was never Jessia Ennis (oh yeah), and that I shouldn't stop now.  And so I didn't.  

Every other morning I was out, trying to get that little bit better. I would like to say everything just clicked, but it didn't.  It took patience and alot of effort to get my body back up to running again. But I loved it.  I loved how my body started changing, my legs and arms became that little bit leaner.  I loved that I was going further and further each time.  I also loved that time to myself.  I pop my ear phones in and all I have to worry about is moving my legs.  Sometimes, after a very long day, this is heaven. Running clears my head, and I also feel thankful at what my body can actually do. 

So from March to now, I have very, very slowly built up from my 1 minute run to 2 minute walking pace, to now being able to run non-stop for 7 miles. So what now? This is what I was thinking to myself this week.  I had been toying with the idea of a 10k since April, but now I feel I am a bit past that as being my goal.  So I've gone one up.  I've entered the Leicester half marathon on 26th October.  This has filled me with an equal sense of dread, excitement and anxiety...I have 9 weeks to go from running 7 to running 13.1 miles (don't forget the 0.1 mile). AND, I am also going to try and raise some money whilst I am doing it.  I am thinking that saying I am running a half marathon sounds pretty impressive, so family and friends may feel compelled to donate!  And, its a good feeling doing something to help others too. 

I will keep you posted with how I am getting on.
Wish me luck!


P.S If you did want to help me raise some money for running a half marathon, my Just Giving Page link is here. Any donation, no matter how small, will help me raise money for my chosen charity, UNICEF. 
P.S.S. Thank you. 

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Sanctuary Thermal Detox Mask

To me, there is something very satisfying about applying a face mask. Whilst I do reserve the use to special occasions, and I say that very loosely, as special occasions include birthdays, weddings, the end of a stressful week, if my skin feels a bit rubbish, if I think I suddenly aged overnight (which did happen once)...well, basically I use a mask quite often.  I usually have a few sachets or containers of one face mask or another lurking in the depths of a drawer, but there is one face mask I always go back to and that is the Sanctuary 5 min Thermal Detox Mask.  This mask is amazing. 

You apply the mask to clean,wet skin and then apply a thin, even layer to your face.  As soon as it hits your skin, it immediately warms.  It gets warmer and warmer until you think you may be on the brink of a spontaneous combustion, but then the warmness stays, well just warm.  Not to scare you or anything.  It doesn't feel like your skin is burning, it's a nice sensation. I think it is just surprising how warm it actually feels (hmm, think I over-used the word 'warm' there). 

Back when I was young, free and basically had money to burn (no house, no baby, no real bills to pay), I used to happily buy a tube of this good stuff, which is £10.50.  Nowadays, being a bit more frivolous, I tend to buy the sachets which are £3.00 each.  There is easily enough for two applications in the sachet, and I have just used one twice and now have enough for a mini-face mask third!!! I am fully aware that the price per ml is alot better value in the tube, but I usually pop this in towards the end of my shop when I have already spent a small fortune on other 'essentials' at Boots, so the sachet seems more economical for the tallying up at the till!

Worryingly, I did apply this mask last week.  My daughter noticed straight away and was giggling.  My husband did not notice, and I don't know if that says more about what I look like first thing in the morning or his lack of observational skills.  

After leaving for 5 minutes and relaxing, (or chasing Baba around), my skin feels like it has been thoroughly cleaned and purified.  And there is none of that horrible tightness you can sometimes feel post-face mask. I have quite sensitive skin and this mask has caused me no irritation at all. It might not make you look ten years younger, tidy your house or get your little one dressed, but it certainly gives your skin an amazing pick me up, and your skin looks and feels lovely. Next time you are in Boots, pop this little beauty into your bag. You won't be disappointed!


Monday, 18 August 2014

My Blog and Me

My little corner of the internet is now 11 weeks old! And wow, what a steep learning curve for me in the world of blogging.  I have not only started my own blog which I have longed to do for such a long time, but I have learnt to tweet, use linkys and got to grips with a hashtag!  I have also learnt that my husband has very little patience in photographing me swirling about in any new purchases (cue me getting creative with a tripod and stack of books).  And for the record I have learnt I am bloody useless at any type of modelling. 

But please don't let me sound negative.  I have also learnt that I absolutely love blogging, and for me writing creatively again is amazing. So whilst somethings are alot harder than I had imagined, it has been so so worth it. 

I realise now when I started out that not only was I a bit clueless, but I was a bit wishy washy in what I was actually going to blog about.  I set myself the schedule of blogging three times a week and having themes of Mummy Mondays, Whatever Wednesdays and Fashion Fridays.  I think this was really useful in the beginning to give me some direction with my blogs.  However, now I feel I want my blog to be a bit more organic, and rather than have the strict blog topics, for me to blog as and when I want to about whatever and in turn to be more creative, which is what I originally set out to do (yep, I did just use the word organic).  

I know I still have so so much to learn, and with only 11 weeks under my little belt of blogging, who knows what changes I will make in the next 11.  But for now, these changes feel right and I am very excited to see how my blog evolves and grows. 

I had originally thought that if I got just one person reading my blog (besides my lovely mum) I would be happy.  But having people not only read, but comment lovely things has been so amazing and encouraging!  I can't promise that my photography or posing will improve but here's to trying. I am excited to see where this next little blogging chapter takes me. 


The Six Sisters of Parenthood

As you begin your journey into parenthood there is advice and information a plenty.  You are told of the sleepless nights, the constant feeding, the babies urge to poop, wee and be sick at any given moment. But what people don't tell you is all the emotions that come with having a child, and how these feelings suddenly appear when you least expect them.  Let me introduce to you the six sisters of parenthood... 

Ahhh please step forward good old Mrs.Worry.  You may think you were a worrier before, but add a baby and you have a whole lot more to worry about.  It begins with the basic things like are you pregnant, should you eat a grape, then it progresses to are you in labour, was that your waters breaking or a little wee.  Once baby is here, its's are they too hot, are they too cold, are they hungry.  And then you worry if you did this right, did you do that wrong.  And then when you think you have it sussed, you worry about stuff that hasn't even happened yet. What if there is a giant storm and you get washed away, what if you get stranded on a desert island, what is the world going to be like when your child is get the picture.  My personal worry of did I lock the front door and did I turn the hair straighteners off seem to pale in significance (*but quickly runs to check the straighteners are off, I mean we don't want a house fire*).

Urgh.  Arguably the ugliest of the sisters is Miss. Guilt, and she sure does like to make her presence known.  I never need anyone to critique my parenting, I do a pretty good job of doing this one on my own.  The guilt if you are a good enough mum, the guilt if you are doing it right, the guilt if you go to work, the guilt if you stay at home, the guilt if you put them in a nursery, the guilt if you don't.  The guilt if you dare to parent differently from someone else. Miss Guilt is an ugly old spinster and she just loves to follow me around.  

Awww now this sister isn't too bad at all.  She is lovely.  When your little one learns to crawl, learns to walk, learns to say 'mama' or 'dada', you have the most enormous sense of pride that you think you may actually burst.  This pride can rush at you without any given warning. But the thing is with Miss Pride is that sometimes no-one else gets it.  The woman sat next to you on the bus wonders why you look so proud when your toddler has just yelled 'I need a poo' at the top of their voice.  But you are toilet training them and this is a big step...Wohoo! What an achievement, they actually recognised the need to poo.  (Now you just to exit the bus ASAP).  

Random Tears
You know that advert about herbal tea and then the woman finds 'herself' on an island.  Yep, that's the one. After I had had Baba that made me cry.  It doesn't even bloody make sense.   And why are they stranded anyway, silly woman.  Anyway, I digress, my point is that after having Baba I have these flood of emotions that I didn't take a second glance at before.  Miss Random Tears can also strike at any moment.  I hear that cry of a very new born baby and it sends me reminiscing about my labour and holding Baba for the very first time - I even temporarily forget about loading the frozen peas up onto the checkout at Sainsburys.  Not that I had a heart of stone before having Baba, but she seemed to have opened up the flood gates. I also struggled to watch Planet of the Apes, I mean, the poor ape missed his mummy and that's the real reason he was plotting to take over the world (sob!).

I am not talking about just any fear here, oh no, I am talking about The Fear.  You are in the shop and you turn for literally a split second and your child has disappeared.  Your breathing stops and you literally are paralysed with the fear.  Say hello to Mrs Fear and goodbye to your actual heart beating.  Then said little one pops up from kneeling right beside you.  Dear God. This is the worst worst feeling in the world.  Ever.  I've experienced it once and I never want to experience it again.

So you may think this is a very obvious one. We all know you will love your children, this is the one people tell you about.  But what nobody tells you is that your heart actually grows. You think you love things before your baby, you know like your partner, your dog, your Christian Louboutins.  But when Mrs Love arrives with your baby, the most enormous love invades your heart and your heart actually feels like it has grown ten fold for the amount of love you have for that little person.  It is overwhelming.  It is truly wondrous, and it makes whatever sister of parenthood that is hounding you that day, bearable, and so worth it.   

"Making the decision to have a child - its momentous.  It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body", Elizabeth Stone.


Friday, 15 August 2014

Lanterns, realisations and a very quick change

As you may or not know, on Fridays I try to pull something together that resembles a Fashion Friday.  And to be fair some weeks have taken more of a creative stance.  I know that if you are looking for up to the minute fashion, clothes a plenty, beautiful photography and amazing modelling, you ain't going to find it here!  What you will find here is a busy mum to a toddler who tries to look her best, doesn't actually buy that many clothes (!) and is pretty rubbish at modelling them in photographs. BUT WAIT...before you go and read some fashion guru's blog...listen up.  This blog post is real life!  This blog post is what's its like as a mum when you can't find a bloody thing to wear and you don't want to drag your poor toddler round town to buy a special outfit. 

So this was the scenario...this Friday I am going out with the husband and another lovely couple for some yummy food, drinks and dancing...and I can't wait!  Baba is having a sleepover at grandma's whilst we are painting the town red.  This means we are not only going out, but we can have a lie in the next morning (at this point I am going to gloss over the fact that my body is so used to getting up at 6am this is probably the time I am going to be awake). I was rummaging in the depths of my wardrobe as you do and could not find a thing that I actually wanted to wear.  So me and Baba went to visit my parents and enter my sister who had just got back from her holidays and had stupidly left her suitcase wide open.  I obviously had a rummage in there and found this very pretty lantern dress.  I have to say she was a little quick to say yes when I asked if I could borrow it, which did make me a little suspicious. After just Googling for the dress, it is actually last seasons and went in the sale recently, which I don't mind at all, but I think my sister must have already worn it alot and hence she has let me loan it. 

If you like this dress, I have found some pretty alternatives here and here.  But wait...after prancing about in this dress and taking about 100 photographs of said prancing (yup unfortunately the above shots were the best ones!!), I started to feel like I could find something better.  You know that horrible feeling when you have an outfit but you don't feel quite right in it?  So, a sudden panic set in as I ransacked my wardrobe yet agian.  Baba was having her afternoon nap, and I began plotting a quick trip to town to see what I could track down (yep, my stance against dragging a toddler around town was going out of the window). I thought I would have a quick internet browse first, and after a long time of finding nothing, then finding something but it was out of stock, I found this little beauty!

This Kate Moss play suit from Topshop is amazing and is currently in the sale link here.  I quickly ordered it and got express delivery to receive it in time for tonight.  I think it is such a classic and can be worn now and then over the winter months too, and you really can't go wrong with black!

Unfortunately I haven't got a picture of me wearing this as I ordered it with such short notice. But, if you pop on over to Instagram and follow me: Lauraevelynbee I promise to upload a picture of me wearing it tonight! (I take no responsibility for any further photographs taken after this...alcohol will be involved!). So without further ado, I am now offer to pamper and preen for a lovely night and I hope I don't want my pajamas on before 10pm (which is an unfortunate side effect of being up so early and running after Baba all day). Please god, make my feet be light, my glass full, and my head relatively clear in the morning!

Have a great weekend and thanks for reading!


Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Awards, Speeches, Bloggers and Kanye

I received a twitter notification last week saying that I had been nominated for a Liebster Award by the lovely Khrissie from Khrissie Loves (check out her blog here.).  My first reaction was, wow what an achievement and then secondly, what on Earth was I going to wear to accept my award. Before I called the local paper to inform them of their local residents achievement pretty much akin to a Nobel Peace Prize, I did a bit of Googling and actually discovered that the Liebster award was actually a bit of fun aimed at promoting new blogs. 

Now the only downside to this award was that there were certain rules to follow, such as answering a number of questions, putting down some random facts about yourself and then tagging another eleven bloggers.  This to me felt a bit like one of those dodgy chain letters I got when I was little.  I have to say, I was really honored that someone had taken the time to not only read my blog, but think of tagging me too, and whilst I don't wish to offend Mr or Mrs Liebster or any other lovely bloggers, the thought of tagging more bloggers just didn't appeal to me.  So  in response to my award, I thought I would indeed share eleven random facts about myself for your reading pleasure, then do a few shout-outs as part of my acceptance speech!   

 11 random facts about me:

1) I desperately need a haircut and my last one was over six months ago. Its wispy ends a go-go in the Laura Evelyn household.
2) I am a worrier and will worry about anything and everything.  If I am not worrying, I worry about that.
3)A llama spat in face not too long ago and I had to Google if I was going to die.  I was worried about diseases (no, I'm not dramatic at all).
4) I am not one to chat on the telephone.  I much prefer talking to face to face with people, so I might very occasionally not answer my phone.
5) I also get nervous ringing places to book appointments...weird but true.
6) I have just started Breaking Bad and yup, I am addicted!!!
7) I once had to sing solo at a baby group because no-one knew the song I had suggested.  It was hell.
8) I really can't sing.
9) I like to fill the kettle up in the morning so it's ready for my cup of tea first thing.
10) I love wearing pajamas and I often consider when is it too early to wear them without being deemed as a slob.
11) I once lost a flip-flop to the ocean whilst trying to help someone in wheelchair on a beach.

So I guess if this was a real awards ceremony, Kanye West might be trying to steal the mic from me about now, but as he is nowhere to be seen, I would now like to do a few thank you's! I am completely new to the world of blogging and my blog is just over two months old.  It's been quite a journey in such a short space of time and whilst I mostly feel quite confident and happy with my blogging, there are times when I wonder if anyone is actually reading it, if it's good enough, if the content is OK, am I actually funny, you know, the usual little self-doubt gremlins creep in.  What has truly surprised me is support from other bloggers.  Their tweets, shout-outs, comments and help have meant so much and I would just like to say thank you! 

First up is Beccy from Bluebell and Bumpkin.  I think Beccy was the first blogger I really started any dialogue with, be it via the internet.  I very timidly sent her an email asking her a question about how to do something on my blog, and she immediately sent a lovely response and really helped! She gave me a little shout out last week and so to you Beccy...thank you, thank you! You blog is just beautiful and I appreciate your help! You can have a peek at Beccy's blog here.

Next up is brummymummyof2.  This lady is absolutely hilarious.  You HAVE to check out her blog now here (after you've finished reading here obviously). It's brilliant.  And this lady helped me understand what the hell a linky was, and also really helped me in linking up with other blogging mums.  Thank you! Thank you!

Next up, is the first ever time I was mentioned in some one else's blog.  Aby from You baby me mummy actually put me on a list of a blog's that people should go and check out!! Woop woop! I actually danced around the bedroom when I saw this.  And my husband was pretty impressed too (with the mention on her blog, not my dancing).  You can check out Aby's lovely blog here.  

And finally a shout out to Kerry from Be a Mummy Blogger, (link here) who gave me a lovely shout out last week on twitter, and also to Helen from Actually Mummy (link here) who actually mentioned me in her best new blogs for August article.  Cue more Beyonce style dancing.  Wow. (At the mention, not my dancing).  Thank you, thank you. 

I now accept my Liebster award and I am well aware I may never be given it again seeing as though I haven't even done it properly.  However, I now have the award and I am making a run for it. Catch me if you can. 

Monday, 11 August 2014

Lies, lies, lies and stomach ache

As I was growing up, there were certain things my mum used to tell me, that being a young, innocent and impressionable child, I totally believed.  It's only when I got a bit older and wiser that I realised that the woman is crazy and I have no idea where half of the things she told me actually came from.  But being a mum myself now, I guess her little lies she used to tell me were part of some parenting strategy to keep me from doing certain things, to stop me being a little bugger or maybe on days when she had plain just had enough of me.  I do wonder if I will adopt some of these little lies myself or just make some up of my own as I try and set Baba on the straight and narrow.  I thought today I would share with you some of her quotes that have stuck with me.  

"Don't walk on the kitchen floor with no socks on as it gives you stomach ache".
My mum loves saying this one, and she still says it to my sister.  I have no idea how the kitchen floor would effect your stomach.  Basically this is just my mum saying, "put some socks or slippers on".  I mean I am thinking the worse case scenario here would be cold feet or a slip / trip. 

"Too many grapes give you stomach ache".
There was always a bit of a theme with stomach ache with my mum's little lies.  I don't know if that was because she thought that would be enough to scare us or if  she wasn't being very imaginative.  Eating too many grapes apparently caused the dreaded stomach ache.  I think my mum just didn't want us eating all of the food. 

"You've caught a chill".
To this day I am not sure what a 'chill' actually is, but we all have it alot apparently.  I think it is more of a cold.  God forbid if you get cold, don't wear a coat, get a wet sock, forget your umbrella because the dreaded chill will get you.  I have tried to argue many times of the science behind the cold and flu viruses, but it would appear a cold is linked to being cold so you best wrap up.

"A stiff neck is caused by having the window open in the car".
When my mum is a passenger in the car you have to be very mindful of the angles of air flow. If she feels any breeze is hitting her neck you best wind that window up ASAP.  As after 30 seconds she will complain of a stiff neck.

"A glass of water heals most ailments".
Headache? Drink some water.
Too hot? Drink some water.
Dizzy? Drink some water.
Tired? Drink some water. 
There isn't any sympathy from my mum if you haven't been drinking enough water. 

"Woodlice Will Bite you (as will most other garden creatures)".

You can tell me otherwise but last time I checked, woodlice don't bite.  Now my mum never told me beetles can too and I had a nasty shock when I was playing with a big one once (as a child!). I think my mum was probably sick of me playing with them and bringing them into the house.  Luckily, her words haven't resulted in a phobia. 

I am sure there are many more little gems, but those are the ones I can remember.  I think it's hard when you have children to be on form all of the time, and sometimes instead of giving a very long winded answer, one of these little answers may slip out. 

Did your parents ever tell you complete rubbish? Or do you now say anything to your little ones that you later think...whhhaaat?!?!

Would love to hear your thoughts and comments.

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As always thanks so much for reading and happy Monday!


Friday, 8 August 2014

An Awkward Pose and being down with the kids kinda Fashion Friday

As you all know, my recent Fashion Friday posts have been bordering on the not so Fashionable Friday and more of me struggling with the blog title and thinking what am I going to write.  Whilst thinking hard this week (and yes it did hurt), my lovely mum decided to have a clear out of her wardrobe and it was as if my prayers had been answered!  You have never seen me move so fast to have a little rummage and get my mitts on something. (I obviously had to beat my little sister to the pile, age before beauty after all!!).  

My mum is in her sixties, but is a pretty cool mum even if I do say so myself.  If you want to see her, check out my previous blog post here.  Anyway, whilst some of her clothing would actually age me a few years, (I mean, I'm still down with the kids being in my early thirties-well sort of), she has some really nice classic items that I want to steal/borrow/keep forever. Enter the striped midi-dress and more awkward poses that I know you all have been missing!!!

This dress caught my eye immediately.  I love a stripe and also love the midi-length.  It's a bit different from other styles in my wardrobe at the moment, and is quite versatile.  I think you could wear this with sandals, pumps and here I teamed it with some boots.  I have had a look online and this particular style of dress had sold out from Marks and Spencer which is where my mum purchased it, but there is very similar dress here, and similar styles here and here.

This dress was straight in my bag anyway, and I have already planned when and where I'm wearing it which is always good.  I'm not going to lie to you, I am a little self-conscious about it being tight around my stomach area, but I think that is the price you pay for having a stripe and midi-dress in one.  I will just not have to have a pudding when I wear it.  Ok, I will have half a pudding.  Oh sod it, I will have the pudding and wear this dress anyway. :-)

Happy Friday everyone and thanks for reading! 


Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Here Hold This...

There are certain things you have to do when you are a mum. Childbirth, getting through a day on 20 seconds of sleep, having food thrown at your head...oh yes and holding a snake! This is what happened when we went to Derby Museum's Bug Bonanza last week.  Not only did we hold a snake, we also met and held a variety of bugs, reptiles and creepy crawlies.  And what do you say when a roomful of toddlers and children are looking at you as you are handed old smile politely and hold the snake, whilst secretly chanting a prayer to the gods that you make it out of the room alive. 

"I'm cool with this"

"Yes, yes, i'm finnnnneeeee"

Derby Museum appear to be experts in organising family friendly free sessions which are not only educational but fun too!!! I just loved the attention that was paid to the very little ones, they are not left at the back as can sometimes happen.  When Baba  began to cry because she wanted to hold a frog (!), the gentleman in charge of the animals brought her to the front and placed a frog on each of her hands. Baba was over the moon!  Though I did lose count of the amount of times I told her 'gentle hands'!!.  The session was expertly organised, and the gentleman explaining all about the animals was really passionate about his work and passing on his knowledge to the children. 

This little bearded dragon was more my thing.  She didn't move much. 

If your in the Derby area, check to see if this fantastic museum is running any sessions and please go! The museum is also in the process of refurbishing parts of its exhibitions. At the moment, Baba loves running through the caves in the natural history section, with me chasing after her.  A link to the the museum website is here.

The natural world is just a fascinating topic for children, and after all, they are the next generation that are going to be sharing the planet with all these animals.  So yes, if it helps for me to hold a snake, I'll do it.  I'm just hoping no one noticed the bead of sweat on my top lip and paler than normal complexion! 

"If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it", David Sobel. 


Brilliant blog posts on

Monday, 4 August 2014

My Little Thumb Sucker

I am just going to put it out there.  My daughter sucks her thumb.  Yup.  There you have it. And I will be accepting my award for worst mum to add to my very large collection later. Here's the thing, everyone and their dog appears to have an opinion on my daughters thumb. Take the cashier at the local supermarket.  She could barely concentrate on scanning my groceries last week for enthusiasm of telling me a horror story about her friends friends cousins dogs friends owners son who has the worst teeth and still sucks his thumb, has a small hand from it and he is nearly 60. And then there's the lovely librarian lady...uh-no...she ain't so lovely when she is telling my daughter her mummy will have to chop her thumb off because big girls don't suck their thumb.  I mean, no wonder Baba sucks it, I would too if I was in constant fear of a sudden chop to steal one of my digits. 

"The Thumb"

When Baba was very small, I faced a dilemma of what to do as her comforter.  Nobody forewarned me about the decision I was about to make.  My choice was very simple, dummy or thumb.  And you know what, I just couldn't bring myself to buy a dummy.  (Now if you are reading this and your child has a dummy, then that is fine, and I am in no way going to criticise you.  I mean this parenting thing is hard enough-we all need any support we can get).  But for me personally, I think I had struggled so much to establish breastfeeding, I just couldn't face messing it all up for a dummy.  And then during all of this dithering and pondering, Baba found her thumb and the decision was made for me. 

I had warning after warning of the effect on speech, teeth, development, hand size, thumb size, you would have thought she was the only child on the planet to suck her thumb.  So I did what I usually do, and I Googled.  From my extensive research (I have lost count of the times I have looked this up) it appears that as long as the habit is stopped before the infants second teeth come through, then it will not harm teeth or speech. Now I have to say, my daughter takes after her mum in the sense that the girl never shuts up, and her speech is lovely and clear.  I do keep checking her teeth for any signs that they are growing at a 90 degree angle, but I have to say they all look lovely and straight to me.  

I go through phases of sheer panic now that my daughter is two, that she will be sucking her thumb at 60, have no teeth at all, and speak funny (like that guy the supermarket cashier knows) but then I get a grip, it's a thumb, and I aren't going to tape it up or threaten that a munchkin will take it if she keeps sucking it (yep, these were things I found on the internet!!). It would seem that the consensus is that the majority of children will stop themselves from sucking their thumb as they grow and develop and get a sense of being a big boy or girl.  Deep down I know when the time is right she will naturally stop.  I'm not a completely bad mum, if there was even a question of it affecting her long term then I would take immediate action now.  I don't mean chop it off, but I certainly would be doing something.  But nothing is telling me that this is the case at the moment.  I do make her take it out if she wants to talk, and to be honest she is so busy talking during the day, it's hardly ever in.  She tends to suck that little thumb when she is tired or unsure in new situations. 

So I think we will plod on and I will monitor this little thumb thing.  Me and Baba are OK with that.   Maybe the wise lady from the supermarket, the librarian, oh and did I mention the woman at the post office aren't, but back off ladies-and if you do threaten to chop my daughter's thumb off again I may just tell you where you can stick your own thumb!!!!


Friday, 1 August 2014

The Milk Maid Braid (or the hairstyle my husband hates)

At the moment my Instagram feed appears to be of everyone and their dog sporting a milkmaid braid.  After restraining for some time not to follow suit, I thought what the hell, lets give it a go.  Another rationale for trying this style was the fact that I had seen Alexa Chung sporting the look, so as usual, if its good enough for Alexa its good enough for me.

After a brief Google, and I am not kidding, I found the most complicated video of how to do this look, it would actually entail being double jointed and having arms the length of an Orangutan.  I then decided to just go for it and see how it turned out.  Amazingly, I did this in under 10 minutes, first time.  Which rarely ever happens to me, but also shows how easy this style is.

I love this style so much, not only for how fast I can do it, but also because it stays in place all day and keeps my hair off my face.  After wearing this style for a few days straight, my husband confessed he hated it and couldn't help think of Star Wars.  I have since informed him princess Leia actually wore her plaits on the side of her head.  Humph.  As it stands I still love this style and my husband is keeping quiet on it.  But enough about me, let me show you how I do this very simple hairstyle.

The Milk Maid Braid.
Create a middle parting and continue to the back of your head so you have two sections.

Now plait on of the sections, starting just above and behind your ear.

Tie with a clear hair band. 

Now plait the other side. 

Now take your first plait and lay it over the top of your head.  Secure the ends with two bobby pins.

Take your other plait and lay this over the top.  Try and place it so it overlaps the ends of the first plait and its ends tuck under the first plait.  Secure with another two bobby pins.

And ta-dah! A plait fit for a milk maid!

What are your thoughts? Do you like this hairstyle or should it banished to the milking shed?
Comments, as always, are very very welcome below!
And yay!Its Friday! Wishing you all a fabulous weekend!


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