Tag Archive | Shopping

A new venture begins

So my Mum and I have bought a beach hut, which we are calling Doll’s House.

It’s very exciting for us, something we have wanted to do for a very long time, and recently we found ourselves in a position to actually go ahead with it.

I have created a new Blog for our  adventure, where we hope to capture the fun we have and keep a record our endeavours. Please pop over and have a read.


If you have any comments or advice that you want to share, please do!




Would you have said anything?

I try really hard NOT to moan or comment on the parenting skills of others. Each parent is different, with their own ways of raising their children, and I respect that. I am not some interfering busybody. I am aware that some parents go by the book; others will completely disregard the book and some dip their toe in the book intermittently as and when they need to. It really doesn’t matter, because at the end of the day as long as the child is loved and looked after and safe, hitting those milestones is somewhat unimportant.

That being said, today I witnessed something which left me speechless and quite frankly appalled. I saw a Mother who in all honestly needs a lesson in being a parent.

I was walking with my three rugrats following a visit to the Chemist and I noticed a boy, I would guess aged between 3-4 years old, standing on the other side of the road clearly distressed and very clearly alone. I called to him to stand still, we were near a relatively busy through road – fortunately the after school rush had ceased. He didn’t. He began running towards a woman who was coming out of a Post Office. I realised she was his Mum, and relaxed.

But….did she walk up to her son to hold his hand and calm him down? Did she scoop him up and reassure him he was fine? I’m afraid to say she didn’t. She marched over to her car, which was parked on the opposite side of the road, shouting to the boy “I’m only here.” Of course the boy ran after her, as any young child would, but she did not turn around to see if any traffic was coming. And of course the boy didn’t, He’s an infant. Looking before running into the road is not a priority for a small child. Well my heart stopped, as I am sure any adults would. I did shout out, although I doubt she heard me “He’s running in the road”.

I carried on walking, and happened to have to walk past her car. By the time I got near, she was cuddling him and I overheard her saying “I was only in the Post Office. You’ll have to come in with me now if I cannot trust you to stay in the car.”

I am ashamed to say I didn’t stop to ask if the boy was alright. I am ashamed to say that I didn’t give the woman a piece of my mind. I am ashamed that I didn’t say anything to the mum, or do anything to help/prevent the situation I witnessed. It did happened so quickly.

But sitting here, I wonder if anyone would have said anything? Is it right to publically question the actions of a parent? Would you I wonder have said anything? I wish I had done. I hate myself for not saying anything, for at least checking the boy was ok.

Now I’m not saying we haven’t all done it, or considered it. Your child falls asleep, but you have to stop to get a pint of milk or whatever. Your child looks so cosy. They need a nap. It would be horrible to wake them for such a quick stop. They’ll only be grumpy if you wake them. It’s raining. They’ve kicked their shoes off. They don’t have their coat on.

I to am guilty of leaving my children in the car. But please note the plural, CHILDREN. They are all together, and all seat-belted in. My eldest locks the car from the inside with strict instructions to use the horn if she feels uncomfortable or scared. It doesn’t make it right though. Hands up to that. And I won’t be doing it again.

A weekend of firsts – Part two.

Ipswich Town F.C.

Ipswich Town F.C. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Football. I guess it’s a boy/man thing. I don’t understand it. I don’t like it. It bores me to watch it on telly. Footballers are, in my own opinion, overpaid and underworked.  I can’t comprehend how football supporters get so worked up about it, even going to the extreme of fighting/clashing over the game. Going to an actual match though is a very different kettle of fish. I don’t actually mind going to a football match.

G, my youngest, has shown an interest in football for quite a while now – he is only 2 years old – but he will sit and watch it on telly, he loves chasing and kicking a ball around the house (despite yours truly repeatedly telling him not to!), and has even started making goals out of inanimate objects to play shooting goals in the garden. Its exceptionally sweet to watch. But makes me wonder if it is a natural thing for boys to take an interest in sport. Are they drawn to any physical activity that requires a ball? Is it in their DNA? Part of the “cave-man” make up. Is it testosterone related?

It’s not just football G likes. Rugby is also a favourite. (I DO shout LOUD if his rugby ball is thrown around the house Those things have a life of their own!). Cricket, he will also sit and watch this too – whereas it sends me to sleep!

With this in mind the Husband took G to his first football match last Saturday. It has been something we had been discussing for a while. Worried he was too young, would get bored, hungry, etc , etc. However, we bit the bullet and decided to go for it. (I selfishly I encouraged it – it allowed me to do some girly shopping with my girls, without a buggy to manoeuvre around, something I have not done properly in around four years!).

Husband has had a season ticket at Ipswich Town Football Club for many years and goes regularly to all home matches with Mr D, his long time friend, and sometimes Mr D’s daughter goes too. Last season L used to tag along, but this year she’s decided she’s bored of football. Husband continues to go, albeit childless, therefore leaving all three children with one fully paid up subscribed member for the football widows association.  There are many members; you can see us usually on a Saturday afternoon walking around in whatever town centre is our location of choice/nearest football ground, being harassed by the children left in our care, surrounded by numerous carrier bags, being relentlessly nagged – “Muuuuuuum! can I have insert-an-unneeded-and-so-to-be-unloved-and-discarded-toy-here?”, ” Muuuum! I’m thirsty.”, “Muuuuum, I’m hungry.”, “But Muuuum I reeeeeeeaaallly neeeeeed one of these!”, and my favourite “Muuuuuuuuuuuuuuum I really really need a wee/poo NOW!”  You know who we are, you’ve avoided us and I don’t blame you. We are frazzled, hot, sweaty, shouty, mutter swear words under our breath, give sheepish smiles to those people that our children offend/shove. We are the mums who are close to tears and constantly checking our watch to see how much longer we have to endure this torture while our beloved spouses are tucked away in the football ground thoroughly enjoying their child-free afternoon.

So you can imagine my delight when last weekend Husband announced that he would take G to football! I would tell you that I ran around the house whooping, cheering and punching the air, but I didn’t. I calmly and quietly agreed and voiced the obvious concerns any mum would have – “You’ll have to take his rucksack with a snack, a nappy, a bottle of water/milk, some wet-wipes.”, “how will you cope if he gets bored?” “You won’t leave him unattended will you?”. I voiced these concerns, but actually in all honesty, I was going through the motions. G WAS GOING TO FOOTBALL AND I WAS GOING SHOPPING WITH MY GIRLS! I did a little and very much unwitnessed victory dance and concentrated on my afternoon of no buggy, girly shopping.

Of course I was the teeniest bit nervous about leaving my beautiful boy. Of course I knew he would be fine. Of course I’m worried that he’ll turn into a football hooligan. Of course I hoped he liked it enough to go again.

He looked so miniature walking into the ground with Daddy and “Uncle D”. But he went off with such a face-filled smile, that I relaxed and almost skipped off to the highstreet. And the girls and I had a lovely time. Ok so I still got frazzled and my feet still ached. I had to endure two trips to Claire’s Accessories, fight my way around and spend an age queuing in Primark, I still had to move at the speed of light to stop T from knocking over some gorgeous porcelain figures in a gift shop, do one toilet trip and we finished by a lengthy but in my opinion deserved stop of Costa coffee.

Meeting the boys back at the car, brought home to me just how quickly G has grown up in those few short hours. He was carrying a brand new football and wearing a woollen football hat, he had clearly had a lovely time. It then dawned on me, that this football match was as much for Husband as it was for G. They are each other’s favourite person and this was special time for them, just like my girly shopping was for me and my girls.

33 Years old!!

Candles spell out the traditional English birt...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!   (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Well today is the birthday of yours truly….I am 33 years old today! Eek…..

Firstly I want to say a BIG thank you to the Husband for my gorgeous present. You’ve done well this year. Well done for listening. xx

Well done to my Mum, who has been a Mum for 33 years!! I bet that makes you feel old! ha ha ha Love you Mum bundles xx

So what does one do on their birthday when they begin creeping towards their mid-thirties. What does one do on  their birthday when you have three children, no babysitter, and the Husband (who DIDN’T take the day off work) who won’t walk in the front door until nearly 8 O’clock tonight?

I did all my partying in my twenties. Spending hours getting ready, choosing the “perfect” outfit, shoes, handbag, doing hair and make-up, sorting out who’s meeting who and where, Pub crawls, rounds of drinks, tottering in too-high shoes into the nightclub, knocking back the shots, visiting the loos to preen and primp, playing “pull-a-pig”, flirting with a member of the opposite sex to obtain a free drink, more shots, taking off the too-high shoes, falling out of the nightclub, taking possession of a burger/kebab/chips, trying to hail a taxi, usually ended up walking home minus the shoes (which are now tucked under my arm), and throwing myself on the bed, sometimes still fully dressed. No, the thought of getting drunk now and suffering a hang-over (especially with children around) DOES NOT appeal to me one iota. I would much rather watch someone else younger and/or more stupid than me suffer instead.

Suddenly I feel “old” is this normal? I would much rather go to the local pub and have drinks there with the Husband and a few friends, pop into the local Indian and then come home NOT DRUNK.

Currently on my birthday, I have done the school run, been grocery (!) shopping at the local Co-op, put some washing on, cleaned the kitchen, emptied the dishwasher, painted a dolls china tea-set with T, finished and published a post on my blog, had three very LARGE cups of coffee, spoken to various members of my family, replied to birthday text messages. Very Rock n Roll!

And tonight…well lets see what happens.

However, I am content with it. I have done my partying days (thank goodness! If I had to do them again, I think it would kill me!) and I have safely stored them away. (Disclaimer: They can be taken out at will and dusted off as and when the need/want arises.)

Crikey I do sound old don’t I?

What’s in your bag?

MY BAG! It’s funny the things you can ponder on while you mop the kitchen floor…
– Is it rubbish day? Better put the bags out before it rains
– Dinner plans for tonight…Spaghetti Bolognese – do I have enough of everything? Who is coming for dinner?
– My daughters jujitsu class is tonight – I wonder when she’ll be ready enough for me to order the uniform. She’ll need to be measured.

But mostly, and more often recently I think about potential subjects to blog about. This is because I feel I should post more often but also I want to write pieces which are slightly humorous and interesting and not completely mundane.

So I mentally prepare a list, plan it and write them in my journal (occasionally I think I may benefit from having a Dictaphone); sometimes it’s just the subject title which I then expand on it fully when I publish it. I’m not sure if every blogger works this way, or if they just sit and type? Maybe I will find it easier as time goes on.

Some of the topics I have in the wings, waiting for their fifteen minutes of fame include :
– Friendship – losing, making, keeping and maintaining. The ‘rules’
– Child support – financially. L’s dad and his ‘efforts’ etc. What’s right, wrong and fair.
– Lifestyle Vs money –
– Friend’s spouses – is it taboo to blog bout them?

All of these are mentally finalised, some are drafted and others completed, I just do not have the courage to publish them, yet!

So for today, I will just blog about the contents of my handbag

Let me begin by saying, I love my handbag. As a mum, I am responsible for making sure that I cover every possible situation. Long gone are the days when I could manage with a funky fashionable overpriced small over the shoulder job, which could just about house my mobile, lip-gloss, keys, purse, etc. To me, back then, they were the essentials.

Nowadays, as any mum will agree, small dainty handbags are a thing of the past – well until the rugrats are old enough to carry their own things.

Nowadays my handbag resembles more of a horse feeding bag, with the weight to equal that of a fully packed suitcase for a two week holiday.

My handbag from above. Straps – the bag must have shoulder straps AND an over-the-body strap – you never know when you need both of your hands at one time – slinging the bag across your body actually frees both hands. The bag must also be made of sturdy material, but look presentable – leather is always a good option. Pockets – It must have pockets inside, at least two. It must have a zip or similar to ensure it closes completely – this prevents things falling out and rolling all over the floor of whichever establishment you are in at the time.

I have had my current bag since Christmas. It was a present from my Parents (Thanks Mum and Dad! xx) I can always rely on a blooming decent bag from them. And I am pleased to say that, so far, it has held up well and is doing me proud.

And because it’s a bloody decent bag, which is sturdy, has fabulous straps, has three – yes three – inside pockets, I am able to cart this lot around with me nearly everyday. It is also the reason I get moaned at by The Husband, who claims to never be able to find anything – “You carry too much!” “You don’t need all that cr*p in there!”. But the bags serves a purpose when he needs a place to put HIS keys, wallet, mobile, glasses case, etc…

The contents of my handbag

Contents of my bag, audited 10th April 2013:

1 x nappy, 1 x pack of wet wipes, my purse, my glasses case, a pack of plasters (a must have for every parent!), 1 x dummy, 4 x hairbands, 2 x hairclips, 1p coin, 2 x tins of lip gloss/balm, 2 x sachets of ketchup, 1 x KFC wipe, 1 x lighter (I used to smoke!), paracetamol, 2 x lollipops, half a pack of sugar free Polos, 1 x plastic ring red in colour, 3 x pens, 1 x tampon, a pair of my daughter’s sunglasses, 1 x bottle of perfume, a compact mirror, 4 x lipsticks – all different shades, 1 x lip stain, 2 x eyeliners, 1 x concealer, 1 x lipliner, a smaller bag for the makeup, 2 x nail files, two receipts for Morrisons supermarket (I would add that usually there are more receipts than this, I must have been good recently!), 1 x pack of tissues, 2 x pair of mittens for my son.

So there you go. What’s in your bag?

The coffee is brewing and it smells so good….

English: Beach at Walton-on-the-Naze Looking n...

English: Beach at Walton-on-the-Naze Looking north from the Mabel Greville breakwater. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So we’re almost halfway through the school Easter holidays and it’s been lovely. The Husband has taken a week’s holiday and although the weather could not have been more different to what it was like two years ago, ( Easter 2011 we spent on the beach. Not a beach in an exotic location, well unless you class Walton on the Naze an exotic location!) we have had a good break so far.

But time goes so fast. The days get eaten up so quickly. In amongst the plans, days out, entertaining children; you have to maintain a certain level of the mundane routine:  Cooking dinner, doing the washing, getting the shopping done.  I’m already thinking about the shopping list needed for the school packed lunches (L wants a new packed lunch bag!), locating and washing that dreaded P.E. kit (white t-shirt, red shorts and a pair of those lovely black plimsolls), wondering what the weather will be like; usually its after the Easter break that the summer uniform gets brought out and the winter one tucked away. Not sure that will be the case this year.

I’m thinking about the things we’ve still got planned and haven’t got around to yet. Cookie making, cinema trip, gardening, London day trip, zoo trip.

At the Movies ~ The Croods, 2013

We’ve had the afternoon of painting nails (mine: orange, L’s: purple and orange, T’s: pink and sparkly but not G’s – boys of 19 months should not be subjected to wearing nail polish, there is plenty of time for that), shoe shopping (you should know by now that I am a shoe fiend and that trait has definitely been inherited by my kids) a good hour or more was spent trying on various shoes, sandals, trainers, canvas pumps, flip flops, etc. We’ve done the compulsory trip to McDonalds, and got the happy meal toy x3 (The Croods), balloon x3 and fought tooth and nail for a table to sit and eat. We’ve been to Pizza Hut and pigged out on the buffet menu and unlimited soft drinks. I have also had to spend a very unpleasant but much needed morning at the dentist, which resulted in me being unable to talk properly, dribbling everywhere and unable to feel the left side of my face and tongue for the next four hours – yes a filling!!

I always dread school holidays; I am not, in any way shape or form a Mum who can naturally come up with ideas to keep my children happy and amused. I like activities which do not make a mess or require 100% supervision. Whereas my girls just love baking, painting, cutting, play dough, glitter, stickers, etc. This is not unusual I know and many of you are reading this smiling and nodding. Yes you are!

However,  I dislike having my children in the kitchen cooking or baking; they make too much mess and take too long. I know I know I know. Now I’ve typed that I realise that I sound awful. But my children do not miss out and actually despite what I have said I DO let my children do baking, do arts and crafts. I am getting better.

So here I sit at 5am on Thursday morning, downstairs, unable to sleep. My bed; full of snoring Husband and a restless daughter (I would not recommend letting your 9 year old watching an episode of Jonathan Creek by the way, it causes a night of non-sleeping and climbing in and out of mum and dads bed), I decided to retreat to the lounge, put the coffee machine on and catch up on my recorded Sky+ programming  – OBEM, TOWIE (yes I know! I’ve never claimed to have a good taste in television programmes.)

As I type this blog, I am working out what to do with the children today, with the knowledge that in slightly over a weeks time I will be moaning that the alarm has to be re-set and the kids dragged out of bed. But in the meantime, my coffee smells good……………….

You’re selling your wives Jimmy Choos WITHOUT her knowledge…oh you’ve got a death wish!! (*)

Ask any female, regardless of age, and they will tell you that the most magical and memorable part of the Cinderella story was the glass slipper. It symbolises delicate, dainty feet, ultimate girlie-ness. It simply is/was the most important part of Cinderella’s outfit. Yes the dress was stunning, but lets face it, at midnight it turned back into rags. The slipper, however stayed.

For me, when I married The Husband, I spent hours and hours looking for the right pair of shoes. They had to be perfect. They had be glamorous, beautiful, one-off, sexy, high-heeled, comfortable, walkable, the right height, sound right when I walked, the right colour, the right sparkles, I could go on and on. I wanted to have a pair of shoes which ultimately were perfect for me. (In fact I will admit to actually buying more than one pair of shoes before deciding on my  wedding shoes – Sorry Husband. *sheepish grin*).

I will admit, I am a bit of shoe fiend. I can be bought, bribed, convinced, made to go anywhere, made to do anything for the right pair of shoes. They bring me out of a bad mood. They turn me into someone powerful and confident. They make me walk taller, smile more, and laugh louder. I will change a complete outfit just for shoes. I have in the past just sat and looked at a newly purchased pair of shoes. I just love shoes.

My wedding shoes have been kept in the box they arrived in, wrapped in the white tissue paper. This box is inside a hand-sewn silk drawstring bag specifically purchased  (thank you Mum! xx)  for the purpose of keeping my wedding shoes in pristine condition. They have been there for the last four years. They have been taken out of the box no more than five times since my wedding day, each and every time is for my eldest daughter “L” to look at them and ask the same question, “Can I have them when I’m older?” . My reply is always the same……”yes”. And she smiles the biggest smile and hugs me. (I think I may have created another shoe fiend!).

But isn’t this the best part of being a woman and a bride. Yes, I realise the dress is also a huge factor, but not to me. Once the wedding is over, the dress goes into storage, hangs in a wardrobe, goes on display, gets put somewhere, anywhere. Mine is in storage at the top of the wardrobe. I cannot get to it without the Husband helping me. This is where the shoes beat the dress hands down (or feet down!)……I CAN get to my shoes (if I wanted to) and prance around the house feeling like a princess; I could do the hovering, washing up, I could sit on the sofa just looking at them, I could type a blog with them on – I’m not by the way – I could do a number of things in my wedding shoes and no one would know. Because I could repack them, rewrap them and stash them back away before anyone could realise. That is why they are better than a dress.

My wedding shoes were MY choice, completely 100% all mine. NO ONE had any input in the decision making process – well apart from the Husband. I was not allowed a pair of Jimmy Choo wedding platforms. I campaigned and nagged relentlessly. But that was the one stipulation the Husband had; I was NOT to spent £300 plus on a pair of shoes I would wear once. He did not care how comfortable they were, how beautiful they were, that no one else would have them, that they would one day be passed down to L who would in turn cherish them as I would, or that they would go with my dress perfectly. NO. NO JIMMY CHOO SHOES, ABSOLUTELY NOT, NO.

So I never got my Jimmy Choo wedding shoes, but that’s ok, I loved and still love the shoes I wore to got married in. I will probably love them forever, and will as promised, pass them to my eldest daughter when the time is right and she can appreciate them and love – as I know she will.

So imagine my absolute horror when the Husband came home from work one evening this week and began regaling me with a story of how one of his work colleagues – I will call this person TOM – had been talking about selling his wives (she will be called BARBARA)  wedding shoes, WITHOUT HER KNOWLEDGE! Of course this was enough to make my jaw hit the floor, but the Husband continued his story….her wedding shoes were JIMMY CHOO!!! Well at this point the Husband had to pick me up from the floor.

Yes you read that correctly. TOM wanted to sell BARBARA’s Jimmy Choo wedding shoes WITHOUT her permission!!!!!!!!!!!!

Have you recovered? Have you stopped feeling faint? Well done, it took me a bit longer to recover from that shocking revelation.

Forgive me, but everyone surely MUST agree that this is an act which is just wrong. In every way, shape and form, WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. WRONG.

Maybe I’m in a minority, but I know if the Husband dared to even consider doing this to ANYTHING of mine wedding related, he would be in the dog house for an immensely looooooong time. If he dared actually sell anything of mine wedding related without me knowing….well we probably wouldn’t be married for much longer!

Call me materialistic if you like, and yes when it comes to shoes I will hold my hands up and admit it.

But please for the love of all things beautiful and magical and Cinderella-ish, and girly….TOM please DON’T sell BARBARA’s Jimmy Choo wedding shoes.

(*) this post is dedicated to Mr B (TOM) and his lovely misses (BARBARA).  With love and genuine concern for those J.C shoes. xx