Friday 31 October 2014


It has been the most beautiful day down here in Somerset - warm and sunny all day.
Hard to believe that it is the last day of October and therefore Halloween. 
So today the pumpkins met their end! 

We've been growing them since May and had no idea just how much they would take over our little veggie patch at the bottom of the garden.

They basically grew and grew, 5/6 meters at least and I must confess I did think at one stage at just pulling them up. 

But then the actual pumpkins started to grow and....... 

.....we ended up with 6 proper pumpkins by the end of the Summer.

Jeff became quite proud of this one in particular, weighing in at 4.5kg!!

So it was only fitting that today he did the Halloween carving!

So tonight we are ready and waiting for any Trick or Treater's that may come knocking.

Happy Halloween!

Thursday 30 October 2014

Half term treats

It was London on Saturday, spent Sunday recovering and then Sophie had a pre-birthday sleepover and shopping trip to Bath with her lovely friend Lizzie. Bill's in Bath was the first stop for Breakfast, the girls then go off, I do my own thing, then we meet up again for lunch which of course I pay for!!

I was a little naughty but convinced myself it was a pre-birthday treat for me too! I've wanted a pair of DM's for years and have never quite bought an actual pair. I've looked for cheaper alternatives but never found the right thing so at last, I went and got the ones I actually wanted. They'll need wearing in as they are always quite stiff to start with but it will be worth it.

Sophie has now gone away to Lyme Regis for a few days with Lizzie and her family - lucky girl so it just leaves Sam to help carve out the pumpkins tomorrow. I'm quite proud of our first growing endeavours - I might try making soup or something with one - will see what they're like once we cut into them. 

Can't actually believe that it's Halloween tomorrow and we'll be in the month of November - this year is whizzing by far too quickly for my liking!

Monday 27 October 2014


Here is our FINAL  'EARLY BIRD' offer to kick start your Christmas shopping and save you some money at the same time. As before, this offer will last for one week only. This item will not be at such a low price again this side of Christmas, so it is worth buying whilst the offer is on.

This week we are offering our very popular RED Spotty Paper Bags, all with 

50% off 

Remember Offer ends at midnight, Saturday 1st November so you have a week to shop. 
Please spread the word and

Sunday 26 October 2014

London Bound

I am so grateful for the extra hour this morning. We spent the day in London yesterday which meant a very early start and boy did we do some walking! There was a lot of Tube work going on, which meant the District and Central lines along the bit where we needed to go weren't working!!! Typically we had to be somewhere at a certain time so we walked and walked!

We drive down to Hounslow West, where we can park in the tube station car park for just £2 for the day on a Saturday and then go from there. Each year we take a picture by this sign and use it as a measure to see how much we've grown.

What a difference a year makes - top pic taken Oct 2013, bottom pic taken Oct 2014.
The boy is officially taller than me

We headed over to East London first thing to go and see 'The Art of the Block' Exhibition - Nathan Sawaya created each piece using millions of Lego blocks.

Sam loved it especially the bit at the end where you could just play and create something of your own with Lego. Who doesn't like Lego - unless you accidentally step on a piece!

We then headed into Old Spitalfields Market for a mooch around and lunch. I really liked this bit of London although an odd observation I know, there were so many beards! Young men with really full, bushy beards. I did tell Jeff not to get any ideas - must be the new trend!

The thing I wanted to do on this trip was go and see the Poppy Installation at the Tower of London before it ends mid November. We had hoped to go first thing but because of the Tube issues it meant we didn't get there until the afternoon and it was absolutely heaving. Despite the vast numbers of people there was a still, calmness about the place. I'm so glad I got to see it and had a moment to think and give a private thank you to those who died in WW1 - well worth a visit if you can.

So a great start to the half term break. We have no other major plans for the week, other than a pre-birthday sleepover and shopping trip to Bath for Sophie and no doubt a friend or two over for Sam. The garden needs a good tidy up if we have some dry weather and I will still have to keep up to date with dots and spots orders going out. It will be nice to just have some lazy mornings and no school run!

Have a good week where you are.

Friday 24 October 2014

Proud and in Print!

I am very lucky to have shared the last 22 years of my life with Jeff, 18 of which in married bliss!!
I have now known him half of my life - slightly scary thought!
As you may know he is a Maths Teacher, currently working at Millfield School. He too has a blog  'A Maths Teacher Writes' which I must confess I rarely read, as Maths and I have a very bad history. I scraped a C grade at O'Level with many tears along the way, all thanks to my Dad, who spent many a long hour trying to help me. Thank goodness Jeff can help the children with their homework, as I have no clue.

Well a few month's ago he was approached by someone from the TES (Times Educational Supplement) to write an article for them. They liked his style of writing on his blog and could he do something for them. 

Well today his piece is in print and I am very proud. It is very well deserved, he is a great teacher and should rightly enjoy his moment of fame.

Our two have thankfully, it would seem, have been blessed with his love and ability to 'do' Maths. They are both Top Set and unlike me, there are very few tears along the way. If you like Maths then do take a look at his blog, it's apparently quite good, if you are 'in to' Maths in any way x

Wednesday 22 October 2014

A quick catch up

Well Autumn is well and truly here - the garden is covered in fallen leaves. 

We're hoping for a couple of dry days next week during half term to give the garden a really good tidy up. These past 7 weeks have been so busy and there just hasn't been any spare time to get out in the garden even for just a few hours.

Our Katsura tree is looking beautiful and smells divine. As the leaves die, you get the most sweet scent of candy floss!

The beans have pretty much finished now except for the odd one, showing off!! The pumpkins are looking good too - they just need to hold on until Halloween and maybe a couple will be made into soup.

Thinking ahead to Halloween, Sophie has sorted out the Christmas chocolates. We always make up mixed bags to refill the tin - that way all the good ones don't go first. We also give out all the ones we don't like, the orange, coffee and strawberry creams in our case, to the Trick or Treater's on Halloween. Saves on buying extra treats and means we get rid of the chocs we don't like!

I've had a good week on the food front and managed to resist eating even one of the Christmas chocs. I must say the Somerset pork, cider and cabbage hotpot we had over the weekend was absolutely delicious and of course who can say no to egg and chips. Who would think you could eat all this and lose weight - thank you Slimming World! I'm a little apprehensive about halt term and staying 'on plan'. We have a few days out planned which will include at least one trip to GBK (Gourmet Burger Kitchen). I've decided to just go with the flow, eat and enjoy and pick up SW the next day and hope that not too much damage is done!

We're all ready for half term and a few lazy mornings - the kids could certainly do with a bit of  time off. I shall no doubt be trying to juggle dots and spots and family time but I don't mind if there are no alarm clocks in the mix. Here's hoping the sun shines too.

Monday 20 October 2014


Here is our fifth and penultimate 'EARLY BIRD' offer to kick start your Christmas shopping and save you some money at the same time. As before, this offer will last a week before we introduce the next (final offer). This item will not be at such a low price again this side of Christmas, so it is worth buying whilst the offer is on.

This week we are offering our very popular Range of Notebooks, all with 

50% off 

There are 18 designs to choose from, in a variety of sizes.

 These fabulous Trio sets for either Girl or Boy are just £4.00 each!
Set includes an A4, A5 and A6 notebook

Our super A6 Mini notebooks can be bought individually for a ridiculous 97p
 or as a pair at only £1.75

 Our A5 Notebooks are just £1.47

 and our Big Books a steal at just £2.25

Remember Offer ends at midnight, Saturday 25th October so you have a week to shop. 
Please spread the word and

Friday 17 October 2014

My little success!

5 weeks ago as a bag full of nerves, anticipation and determination, I walked into our local Slimming World Group on my own. I had been inspired by 2 people - a family friend who has lost 5 stone and a friend who has lost over 4 stone in a year. Her Instagram feed was full of real, good, healthy food and I thought to myself, if you can eat all that and lose weight I am going to give it a go.

As you may know I occasionally chat about my struggles with the pounds. As I mentioned only recently, I lost 3 stone on my own 2 years ago but half of it slowly crept back on and despite my various attempts to tackle it on my own, it just wasn't happening this time, so I needed some extra help and support.

By week 2 I achieved my 1/2 stone Award ....... 

and got Slimmer of the Week, 
which was just the thing I needed to keep me motivated.

I've bought a White Stuff Jacket, something I could never do before as the sizes are on the smaller size. I can't do it up YET! but it's another thing to motivate me further. 

I'm back to my daily walks around the park, come rain or shine and I'm eating loads and I mean loads of good, healthy food


Today I achieved my 1 Stone Award.
Today 5 weeks on, I am a Stone and 1/2 a pound lighter.
I feel very chuffed and determined to go a lot further. I have set a goal and I will just see how I far I go. I'm loving the plan and can see exactly how it works. I can eat loads and have not once felt hungry, quite the opposite, I sometimes wonder how I can eat so much and still lose weight. For me now, at this moment, it's working. I do worry it may suddenly stop and I won't know why but I will give it my best shot and see how far I can go!

Thank You Slimming World