The Liebster Award

I have recently been nominated by the lovely Clare at the fabulous Super Mommy Club for the The Liebster Award.


What does this mean? Well I have to share 11 random facts about myself, then answer some questions posed by Clare. Then I get to tag some other lovely bloggers to do the same! So here goes, 11 random facts about me.. (sorry if you’ve read some of these things before, I’m not that interesting!)

  1. I have 2 tattoos on my back, one I love, one I love less. I would like more, I just never get round to actually doing anything about it!
  2. Hubby and I got engaged after 5 weeks of knowing each other – I know it sounds mental, but when you know, you know 🙂
  3.  I am not a pet person. Not sure if this was influenced by the 4 pet cats we had growing up, but I seem to be the only member of my family who doesn’t love cats. thankfully hubby isn’t a pet person either though!
  4. I’ve been dying my hair since I was 15 and I’m not really sure what it would look like if left to go natural. Dark brown though I think!
  5.  I once ate the leg of a deep fried spider when I was in Cambodia (after a lot of wine and I could not bear the thought of eating the rest of it!).352552620080314
  6. I have a bicornuate uterus which means I am more likely than most people to have breech births as baby gets stuck in one side.
  7. I slept in a hammock in the rainforest in Belize for 3 weeks when I was 21
  8.  I have done a skydive and a bungee jump!DSC03486
  9. I’ve been to Glastonbury Festival 3 times and would love to go again, though it is slightly less practical with a toddler.267672_10150210378581199_684421198_7487872_4294420_n
  10. I once spoke to Bruce Forsyth on the phone at my old job, and got incredibly star struck. (Not that he knew of course, I was the consummate professional, I just wrote a huge sign and started waving it around the office during the conversation :))
  11. I love to read, all sorts really, but I have a particular love for fantasy and post apocalyptic stories. That and WW2, not sure why but it fascinates me.

And then here are the questions I need to answer:

1. When you were little what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a fashion designer! I had a little A5 ringbinder FULL of drawings and designs. I also created personalities for the models and there was real stories going on between them lol. I loved that thing and wish I still had it! I was also always writing so would have loved to be a writer but was put off by disparaging comments at school. Shame really!

2. Cereal or toast?

3. What was your favourite book as a child?
This is tricky as I’m sure there was lots. I loved George’s Marvellous Medicine so that was probably my favourite, though I also adored Olga de Polga and Melisande.

4. What movie have you watched more than three times?
Ummm, thousands! I watch movies over and over and over regularly. Not even sure which ones I’ve watched the most TBH. Fave films are Crash (though it makes me cry), The End of the Affair (ditto – the most beautiful film ever), the Sex and the City movie, Underworld (I like vampire films) annnnd my new found love is Frozen, I am a huge Disney fan!

5. Why do you blog?
Mainly to stay sane and keep my brain cells ticking over. Plus it’s nice to have a place to record my thoughts and proud mama moments without boring all of my facebook friends (lots of whom are not parents and are totally uninterested!)

6. What was the make of your first car?
A Ford Fiesta, H reg in a delightful mint/sage green colour. It was built like a tank and seriously heavy, but I loved it 🙂

7. Have you ever made a mix tape?
Oh thousands! Many a Sunday afternoon spent as a teenager recording songs from the chart show on the Radio! Then as I got older (and got a CD player in my 2nd car) I had a collection of fab CDs I made to listen to to and from uni, depending on my mood!

8. Apple or Android?
Neither, Windows Phone all the way 🙂 Preferably of the Nokia variety!

9. Twitter or Pinterest?
I’m a bit rubbish with Pinterest, it’s a fab idea but it needs to be easier to publicize on it that it is currently then I would use it more. I never liked the idea of Twitter pre-blogging but now I do like it.

10. If money was no object where would you most like to go on holiday?
Ooh sooo many places! I would love a safari in Africa though, that would probably be top of my list!

11. What was the best gift you’ve ever received?
Oh blimey I don’t know, I have so many wonderful and thoughtful gifts that it is seriously hard to choose!  Though I did love it when my Mother In law bought me a dustbuster, that may sound daft but honestly it was amazing and hugely appreciated. It seriously made a positive impact on my life! That’s all I can think of right now :S

Phew glad that’s over!

Right my turn to nominate some lovely bloggers. Here goes!

Sam at Then The Fun Began

Becky at 3 Princesses 1 Dude

Katrina at Cool Bananas

Emma at BrummyMummyof2

Jane at Ethans Escapades

Lisa at The Life of Wife

And here are the questions you lovely ladies need to answer!

1. Did you always want to be a mum?
2. What is your favourite room in your house?
3.What would you tell your 20 year old self?
4.  Favourite kid’s movie ever?
5. Favourite Outdoor Activity?
6. Holidays in the UK or Abroad?
7.  Run or Walk?
8. What was your favourite childhood toy?
9. Why did you start blogging?
10. Which celebrity would you most like to have dinner with?
11.  If you could choose any time in history to live, when would it be and why?

The rules of the competition are as follows:

1. Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.

2.Display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post.)

3. Answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.

4. Provide 11 random facts about yourself.

5. Nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have less than 1000 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)

6. Create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.

7. List these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here.) Once you have written and published it, you then have to:

8. Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)

All About You Link & Pin Party

Nostalgia Toys Meme

Ages and ages ago the lovely Iona at Redpeffer tagged me in a Nostalgia Toys Meme, and I immediately started thinking what to write. But with one thing and another I never actually wrote it! Rubbish! But, here it is, better late than never, right?

We (and Monkey in particular) are really lucky in that our parents have kept some of the toys that we had as kids!

Hubby’s parents in particular have kept LOADS and Monkey adores going round to their house to play with all of the toys! They kept loads of brio and duplo (and apparently there is a box full of lego in the loft too) and cars, and just wow. There’s a farm Granddad made for hubby and his brothers, and just loads of stuff. Shows how long toys can last!

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A few weeks ago they got a whole bunch of cars out of the loft and hubby and his brothers were loving getting them all out and reminiscing!

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Monkey was so happy with them all too, particularly when he found a mini postman pat van! He adores that little thing! We split the cars up between our house and his uncles houses so there is always cars to play with! Having two brothers I remember many happy hours spent playing with cars, building elaborate race tracks and slopes for them out of sofa cushions and I am sure we will be creating many more with Monkey over the years!

My mum didn’t keep nearly as much as with moving house a few times lofts were cleared out, but she has kept some fab toys. We have some blocks that my uncle made for me when I was a tot – my auntie made the bag and it has a lovely C on it hehe. I don’t remember playing with them particularly but they have lasted so well! Monkey loves them, particularly knocking over Grandpop’s towers!



We also have a fab dolls house that again my uncle made and that Monkey adores. It brings back so many memories for me as some of the wallpaper was leftover scraps from my Grandparents’ house! Some of the furniture hasn’t lasted so well, but it is so lovely and it is really sweet to see Monkey playing with it too!

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We’ve recently bought monkey a play house for the garden, second hand off ebay, and it reminded me of the houses my dad used to make for us. He was a cardboard box salesman (yep slightly random) so our garage was always FULL of cardboard. Which was great for making all sorts of things, and obviously as kids we loved it. The cardboard wendy houses in particular were great. He made this one when my older bro and I were little…


and then it got a whole lot more elaborate when our little bro had his made! I think his may even have had some carpet in it!! Lol! My mum worked for Woolwich at the time, hence the flag!




It’s lovely to think that even though technology has come on so much since we were kids, and with so many toys doing all these amazing things, sometimes, the simple toys are the best. You don’t have to go crazy or spend loads of money on a toy for a kid to be happy.

So there we have it, I have finally written this post! I though it was perfect timing to link up with Iona and Jocelyn for The Theme Game with this week’s theme of Childhood! Sorry it’s so late Iona!

I’m not going to tag anyone but if why not join in ? What were your favourite toys as a kid? Have you or your parents kept any of your old toys that your kids now play with?

The Reading Residence

The Mummy Tag

Meme’s are like buses it would seem! I’d never heard of them then ended up with 2 to do in as many days! It’s taken me a while to get round to answering it all though but I am finally done. 

1.Are you a Stay at Home Mum, or a Working Mum?
A Stay at Home Mum

2. Would you have it any other way?
I’ve gone back and forwards about this and it wasn’t an easy decision but no, right now I wouldn’t have it any other way.

3. Do you co-sleep?
No, each to their own but no it’s not for us.

4. What is your one must-have item for your baby?
One thing? That is tricky! I wrote a post about some of our favourite things for surviving the first year but I think that the answer has to be the green thing. Otherwise known as a star fleece blanket. Last winter when monkey was younger, it was so useful, it was great for short trips in the car and kept him toasty warm without needing to get him in a coat or snowsuit. It was also amazing at naptime. You get the idea, it was amazing! The best present we received for him! (You can buy it at Not on The High Street)

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5. How many kids do you plan on having?
Undecided. We definitely want at least 2… but beyond that we aren’t sure yet. Hubby wants at least 3, I like the idea of 4… but I hated being pregnant and had a lot of problems, so really it depends how the next pregnancy goes!

On a rare date night

On a rare date night

6. Date nights? How many do you have per month?
Per month? 0 We somehow manage to get out every couple of months though thanks to some lovely grandparents 🙂 Mostly for events and things but occasionally we go out just the 2 of us which is really lovely 🙂

7. Your child’s favourite show?
Postman Pat. He does like Baby Jake a lot too and the Numtums have been a fave for a while. Postman Pat is definitely the fave though and Jess is his favourite character.

8. Name one thing you bought before you had the baby and never ended up using?
A Babasling, I thought it looked amazing but we could never get Monkey happy or comfortable in it. We tried a lot but just no.  Shame though.

9. Your child’s favourite food?
Curry, randomly. We started off very mild but these days he eats the same level of spice as we do (which is pretty spicy) as long as he has a cup of milk and some bread. Pretty impressive for a not yet 2 year old! Even in the height of his fussiness he loooved curries! Hubby is 1/4 Indian/Malaysian so maybe it is in his blood.

10. How many cars does your family have?
Two. Mine is the main car then hubby has a banger for when he occasionally drives to work or goes on a business trip. (He usually cycles to work as it is just round the corner.) I love my car, a Honda Civic, I bought it a few months before I met hubby. I had some inheritance that I had kept in the hope of using for a wedding one day. I was in a low place having just got out of a pretty destructive relationship and decided to blow a huge chunk of it on a lovely car, which was something I never thought I would do. I still love it though 31/2 years later so I don’t regret my decision, even though I did end up getting married less than a year later! Oh and the start of the number plate is BJ08 😉

11. Weight gain, before pregnancy, during, after and now?
I’d put some weight on before I got pregnant and got pregnant before I had a chance to lose any. I lost quite a bit in the first few months but then piled the pounds on after I stopped breastfeeding at 6 months and got to 13 stone. So then I went on a weight watchers diet and lost  1 1/2 stone more easily than I thought I would. I lost another 1/4 stone a little while later but that 1/4 refuses to stay off so I go up and down a bit but mainly am at 11 1/2 stone and it seems that is where my body is happy.

12. Dream holiday with your kids?
 When they are older, my dream, dream holiday would be a African Safari, to show them Lions and Elephants and all those wonderful animals in the wild. It is one of my dream holidays and I think it would be wonderful to take the kids when they are old enough to really appreciate it. We’ll see if we can afford it though!!

13.Dream holiday without your kids?
I’m not sure I could have a dream holiday without Monkey, but I know when he is all grown up and moved away (god that sounds like a long time away but I know it will happen one day!) Hubby and I will hope to have lots of adventures. I have travelled a lot, but hubby has hardly been anywhere. I’d love to show him some of my favourite places, Western Australia, Laos, or Santiago in Chile. My dream holiday before having Monkey was to go kayaking with killer whales in Canada. Hubby isn’t too keen on that idea though so not sure if we’ll ever do it!

Some of my favourite places

Some of my favourite places

14. How has your life changed since having kids?
Completely and utterly. Life is all about Monkey now. I no longer work, I bake and cook more, try to do more crafty things but my life fits to his routine and what works best for him and to make him happy. I still try to hold on to some of myself and visit friends as much as can but I inevitably do those things a lot less than I used to. I am a much happier person now too.

15. Where do you shop for your kids?
Usually Tesco and Mothercare for the most part. I love Next clothes but find them too expensive for what they are and while I would happily buy them in the sales, the Next sales are just too crazy for me! I try and buy things in the sales in the next size up where I can and we sometimes have a look in charity shops, and have got him some great buys. I not big on spending lots of money on clothes for myself so I guess it’s no surprise I try and get Monkey’s clothes as cheaply as possible too! Just seems silly to me to spend lots on clothes that only fit them for a few months!

16. Favourite make-up and skincare products?
I very rarely wear much makeup but when I do I use L’oreal Derma Genesis Pore Minimising smoother as it makes my skin luminous, an oil free foundation (my current one is Maybelline Dream Satin Liquid) a good black liquid eyeliner and some Maybelline mascara. Occasionally I go the whole hog with powder, blusher etc but I find a bit of eyeliner makes enough of a difference on an average day!

17. Huggies or Pampers?
Out of the two, pampers. We use pampers at night because Monkey has always wee’d a lot in the night and they seem to be the only ones that can keep him dry. During the day though it’s generally what is on offer or cheapest. When he was little Just 4 bums by kiddicare were the cheapest, whereas most of the time now we find the tesco own brand ones cheapest and they work really well.

18. Have you always wanted kids?
Yes, but I was never in any great rush. My mum had my brothers and I in her thirties so I always thought that was the right age to have them. I wanted to live my life before having kids, and I did. I suppose meeting the right person helps though too. It didn’t take long for hubby and I to get down the aisle and get pregnant so I guess the timing was perfect!

19. Best part of being a mum?
Watching him grow into his own little person. Seeing him develop his personality and watching the joy at all the the simplest things. I found being mummy to  a baby really quite hard but I love being mummy to a toddler. He brings so much happiness into our lives every day and I feel so lucky that I get to be his mummy. God, how soppy was that?

Phew that was longer than I thought it would be!

Now to tag some other lovely mummies who I hope haven’t already done it!

Brummy Mummy of 2

The Life of Wife

Toddler Slave

Mummy’s To Do List


Blog your heart out

I never even knew what a Meme was until recently and had no idea how they worked! I do now though and have been nominated by the very lovely brummymummyof2 for Blog Your Heart Out – so here it is, my first Meme!

What/Who encouraged you to start blogging?

My mother in law suggested it first. She taught me how to crochet and after reading some lovely crochet blogs suggested maybe I start one to talk about crafty things. It was around the time that hubby and I watched the film Julie/Julia. Not seen it? WATCH IT – it’s hilarious and basically following the journey of someone starting a blog (about Julia Childs) who gets famous from it. It is so funny and so that combination inspired me to start a blog of my own – though I decided to write about mummy things rather than just crafty things.

How did you choose what topics to blog about?

I started the blog basically at the time I decided not to go back to work so the thought of becoming a SAHM terrified me slightly. I’ve also found since being a mummy there is so much that people don’t talk about. So many friends with kids glossed over the bad bits,  then when I was feeling like I must be a failure for finding it so hard, the truth finally came out about how they had been through similar things but hadn’t wanted to admit it at the time. So I decided my blog would be about the ups and downs of finding my feet as a SAHM in the hope that some of the things I write may hopefully make even one other mummy feel less alone. It’s adapting as Monkey grows but it’s basically about whatever is happening in my life right now.

What is something most people don’t know about you?

I just wrote a few facts in a recent post, so something else…. erm  I have two fairly large tattoos on my back and would love another, just never seem to get round to it!

What three words describe your style?

I would like to think Fun, Honest and Non-Judgemental (if that counts as one word? :))

What do you like to do when you aren’t blogging?

Other than looking after Monkey and trying to keep on top of the housework??? Oh you said Like, right! I love reading, all sorts but I love historical fiction the most these days. I have been learning to crochet which I find very relaxing and love attempting to bake, sometimes more successfully than others! I love catching up with my friends (sans child) as it reminds me that I am still me. And of course family time with hubby and monkey just makes my heart smile 🙂

So now it’s my turn to do some nominating! The five lucky bloggers are:

Emma at Farmer’s Wife and Mummy

Jenny at Let’s Talk Mommy

Mama H at Thursday’s Child, Friday’s Thoughts

Mummy Bear at Slave to my Toddler

and last but not least Jocelyn at The Reading Residence