Friday, 29 July 2011

Summer Holidays - Week 1

Southbank Centre - Beach

Well, we've managed to have a relaxing but action packed week.

  • Got new school uniform. He's got a blazer ... which is very grown-up.
  • Went to see Cars 2. OK I suppose. Boys really loved it, I liked it. {I wanted to see Transformers.}
  • Went to see The Railway Children at Waterloo Station with a real steam train and we were very pleased that Marcus Brigstocke was Mr Perks. We had a lovely day out and loved seeing the beach by the Thames.
  • Friend over for a sleepover.
  • Visit to orthodontist to show him smashed brace and get new impressions done. {Skateboarding incident and yes I was cross.}

If you are anywhere near the Southbank Centre this summer it is well worth strolling along to have a look at the beach huts. If you have any children that LOVE getting wet make sure you take swimmers or a change of clothes so that they can play in the water {I didn't and they were v disappointed}. They even have a roof garden and a beach. It is brilliant.

Southbank Centre

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Lego Spy House {of course}

In case you can't see what it is - it's a {scathing look} "spy house of course" oh yes silly me how could I possibly think it was anything else.

We have had some serious lego building going on for the last couple of days and this is the finished result. Shame you can't see inside the house with its stairs, bed and bedside tables.

See the building attached - does a spy need an artist's studio? No my mistake apparently it's a garage for weaponry. Makes more sense I guess ...

It has a lot of guards so it will not get broken into. I'm about to attempt to move it so we can have breakfast ... wish me luck ... if you hear howls of outrage then I broke a bit off.

Monday, 25 July 2011

Summer Holidays ....

Summer holidays are here ... woohooo .....

I even got to actually use some large personalised bunting at the Leavers Disco - not that it was really needed with all the disco lights but I felt there should be something.

This is what we hope to get up to in the next six weeks - all achievable I hope.

  • Actually have a proper holiday abroad somewhere.
  • Holkham Beach.
  • Go to the beach hut. 
  • London to see Railway Children at Waterloo. 
  • Madame Tussauds. 
  • Tennis camp & cricket camp. {aka childcare!
  • Go to Go Ape.
  • Have lots of friends over.
  • Play tennis.
  • Go and see Granny and Granmpa/Granma.

First things first though we are off today to get secondary school uniform so that it is done and we can get on with having some fun. I might even do school shoes and put away the washed and ironed uniform so that we don't have to think about school until September.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Moving On

Today Oscar leaves his primary school - the only school he's ever known. He's looking forward to going to secondary school but I think there is a twinge of sadness at leaving some of his friends and familiar surroundings.
How did this happen?!?

As it is a small village school there haven't been many leavers and joiners and when we look back at the class photos they haven't changed at all - they're just taller! I'm really going to miss his group of friends but hopefully we'll still see them .... it won't be the same though.

So today the boys took in their teacher presents and these are the presents for assistants and just people they like!

I felt a bit mean that I didn't include the shot of vodka!

 Oh and credit where credit is due .... I got the idea from here.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

I'm glad it's raining

I think the internet is a wonderful place and I love reading people's blogs and seeing the interaction caused by a particular blogger but sometimes I'm baffled by people's insensitive hiding behind anonymous comments.

There was a post by Alice of ...
 the sight of morning ... about an anonymous comment which I think she handled really well. There wasn't any naming and shaming but I hope whoever "anonymous" is they are feeling ashamed. Brilliantly handled. Plainly the comment had, quite understandably, caused some hurt feelings and I hope that all the comments subsequently left have totally expurgated those feelings. It seems to me to be a very simple thing - if you don't like a blog then don't read it. 

On a far more tragic note some friends of ours had a very, very serious accident on their farm on Friday. On trying to glean some more information I came across some comments attached to a news item. What was written there about a story that involved two fatalities was beyond my comprehension. How can people be so thoughtless, callous and plain stupid in making inappropriate comments?

Sad post over. I thought about writing a normal happy post but it just seemed wrong and inappropriate and I really couldn't actually do it ..... there are some families who are going to have a miserable and very sad summer and I'm glad it's raining.

Monday, 18 July 2011

What is the magic number?

I designed this new personalised number bunting with children in mind but the very first order was for someone who is going to be 50!

Which just goes to prove that you are never too young or too old to let everyone know how old you are!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Homemade Lemonade

Have to admit that the elderflower cordial I made this year was not a huge success so I'm glad to be back to the tried and tested homemade lemonade recipe which is always delicious.

The recipe could not be easier.

4 Lemons

682g of granulated sugar
30g citric acid
2 pints of boiling water

Peel lemons and squeeze juice. Mix in sugar and citric acid. Pour on boiling water. Cover and leave overnight. Strain and bottle.

You can buy citric acid from the chemist where they will ask you what you want it for. {I always think that if you were going to do something naughty with the citric acid it would be very unlikely that you'd admit it in the middle of your local chemist but probably best not to say making bombs.} 

I love this lemonade and I have a sort of unspoken rule that I only make it in the summer although you could make it all year round but then it wouldn't be such a treat would it ...? It is so refreshing and I've yet to meet a child that doesn't like it and I get to feel really smug when visiting children ask for more homemade lemonade in front of their mums. {Luckily they don't realise how easy peasy it is to make.}

Oh and you might be shocked at the amount of sugar you need but honestly you really do need that much and that is less than the original recipe ... imagine how much is in shop-bought cordials???

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

One man's trash is another man's treasure

I never mind having a stint on the bric a brac stall at the village fete because there are often some real gems (also some real tat!). Unfortunately, after the initial setting up of the stall, I had to go over to help in the beer tent and so I missed out on the "I'll just put this to one side" but I did manage to come home with a few things.

I love this little yellow dish - perfect for putting freshly laid eggs into. {Although Ed has yet to realise they are not hard boiled ones!}

I seem to be buying a lot of jelly moulds lately and although this isn't old and is made of plastic it is a good, easy mould and the boys and I are very taken with the idea of choosing between a star, Christmas tree, flower and heart. It produced a beautiful jelly on Sunday! Think it is my 'new' favourite jelly mould.

Now, quite why I bought these I'm not sure but I just thought they looked so lovely and because they hadn't sold at the end of the day there was the danger they might end up in the skip and I couldn't let that happen. They are well loved and well used and we will put them to use again in the summer holidays.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Well Done

Oscar did really well in his SATs so he should get a well done gift box but I was really thinking these might be good for those students who have suffered the long and hard journey towards GCSEs and A Levels.

Not long now to see how they have all done. I'm hoping lots of them will deserve one of these. Although perhaps I should have done an Oh Well You Can Always Retake box as well!

Friday, 8 July 2011

Fete Worse Than Death

That's not true because actually it's the loveliest fete ever!

Every first Saturday in July our village fete is held at the cricket pitch just behind our house and we love it. As it was Archie's birthday he got to have some friends over and so I had a LOT of boys running around but that is the joy of Fete day!

The children play traditional games like smash the china and have running races. There is a dog show. The raffle, bric a brac, book and cake stalls are popular and the teas and bar compete for custom!

As the day goes on people leave and come back and some of us stay the whole day (!) and in the evening we have the scrummiest barbecue. The children play games of football and cricket and the adults sit around chatting! Perfect.

 The girls do girly things.

And the boys do boy things!

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

The Straw that broke ... me into a smile!

I just love these gorgeous paper straws. For all those summer parties sitting in the garden sipping cordial or perhaps Pimms is more likely?

Please tell me you think they are as wonderful as I think they are!?!

Pink stripy ones.
Yellow stripy ones.
Blue spotty ones.
Red heart ones.

They are now on sale from nothonthehighstreet.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Bride and Groom ... please take your seats

Wedding season is in full swing and so here are my new Bride and Groom signs. They come in grey, purple and pink lettering. I guess I could do Mother of the Bride, Father of the Groom, Bridesmaid etc etc as well couldn't I - hope someone asks for that ...

Friday, 1 July 2011

London Day Out - Archie's Choice

The boys had a non-pupil day last week and it was Archie's turn to choose a day out so off we went to the London Dungeons. Oscar and I were not terribly excited about this but as I remembered going as a child I thought it was something we should do and he was so keen we had to.

My heart sank when we got there. I thought as it was out of school holiday season it would be quiet ... ha ha ha ... ! We were faced with a one and a half hour queue but then along came a saleslady who told me that if I wanted to go to Madame Tussauds as well I could bypass the queue and walk straight in. I didn't hear anything else but bypass. Luckily once in, and faced with spending a huge quantity of money, I came to my senses and said no and, even more luckily, I somehow managed to sweet talk my way in without having to go to the back of the queue!

I thought the London Dungeons was really good value for money and much better than I thought it would be.
{I always find it is best to start with low expectations.}

We had lunch at Wagamamas which is our favourite place and then we walked through Borough Market which was amazing.

We had simply a brilliant day.