Friday, 24 June 2011

Choices, choices....
I've been looking for some 'new blood'. No, I'm not a vampire. I'm talking about twitter.

I'd like to add some people to the list of those I'm already following but don't know who to follow.

I mostly follow local people and mums/dads that blog with a few celebrities chucked in for good measure. I want to follow people that I can converse with.  I would search for people with similar hobbies but I don't have any hobbies!

I occasionally go by #ff recommendations but not if they're just listed. Anyone can tweet a list. I want to know WHY I should follow someone.

How do you choose who you follow?

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Two out of three ain't bad

We've been pretty lucky with our children over the years (yes, despite Middle B!) so it was a huge shock to the system last night to be woken and kept awake by a screaming, teething Tidgy.

The eldest 2 never really suffered with teething. They had the red cheeks and gallons of drool but one dose of heavenly Calpol at night to keep their temperature down and that was it. They'd sleep like...well, babies!

We've never had a problem with Tidgy's sleep patterns. He slept through from 3 weeks and oh, what bliss that was. I can't cope without my sleep. At all. I become a screaming banshee for the following day and heaven forbid anyone that dares to get in my way or even look at me!

Last night was horrendous though. He struggled, screamed, punched and kicked me (unintentionally I'm sure) and just would not settle. This made him hot so I stripped him off and gave him a dose of Calpol. It finally worked at 4am. 

Needless to say I am blearly-eyed and tearful today. Not a good combination. If I feel like that after one night what am I going to be like if it goes on for a while.

Of course I feel sorry for the boy but I need my sleep!! :)

I thought the more children you had the easier it became? Have you ever been caught unprepared for a younger child's phase?

Friday, 17 June 2011

REVIEW: Fab Fairies from GALT TOYS

We were sent a Fab Fairies kit by Galt Toys. We've had a few of their craft kits and find them fun and something different from what's on the market for children's craft.

In the box you get two bags with all the pieces you need to make two fairies (soft head, cord, wings, gems & fabric pieces), glue and a set of thorough, detailed instructions.

This kit is suitable for 5 years plus but our 4 year old son managed to do it with some adult help.

It was a little fiddly to do at times and there was a bit of waiting around between each 'section' needing to dry but we did a bit each night so that by the following evening it was ready for the next part. We were a little heavy-handed with the glue but I'm sure every household has spare gloopy glue. Every household with a child that is!!

We used a skewer to fray the cord and it worked better than using our fingers. Quicker too! I have to admit that when we opened the box I couldn't envisage how the cord would end up looking like arms, legs and dresses but once it was all together they really did look fab!

Another great set from Galt Toys and available for the bargain RRP of £4.99. Perfect for all little girls that love fairies and craft.

Take a look at their website to see what else they offer.  

Thursday, 16 June 2011

The Last Word

I was sent this in an email and thought it would make a quick, fun meme. It's simple. Just cope and paste each 'last' and add your own answers. Then tag 3 other bloggers.

The last:-

Thing you ate - A Twirl....had to be chocolate!

Text message you received - From my sister, checking what my niece would need to bring to the sleepover tomorrow night.
Film you watched - Enigma.
Song you listened to - Pack Up by Eliza Doolittle. A favourite of Middle B's.
Book you read - Glasshopper by Isabel Ashdown.
Programme you watched on TV - Neighbours.
Live concert or performance - Russell Watson.
You cried - 2 days ago. I'd been having a rough day and then a friend told me some good news. They were happy tears!
Thing you bought - Father's Day presents for hubby.
Thing you lost - My sanity!

Gift you gave - Toy Story ride on for Tidgy's first birthday.

Great bargain - Dress for was free!
Time you said "I love you" - To my children as I put them to bed tonight.
Time you were starstruck - Can't remember

Holiday you went on - Norfolk in December. Dorset soon 

Website you looked at - Twitter

Bit of good advice you received – who was it from? - "You're doing the right thing. Just keep persevering and you'll get there in the end"- my Health Visitor
Admired someone and why - My hubby, for his patience with me :)

I tag 

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

REVIEW: Brio Pull Along Helicopter

We were asked by Izziwizzi Kids to review the Pull Along Helicopter from Brio.

It's classed as being from 19 months plus but Tidgy is 13 months and it was more than suitable for him. 

It's a well-constructed toy and very strong. He threw it on the floor a few times and there is no worry about little pieces breaking off. It's brightly coloured which is great for little ones as it's really eye-catching and attractive. As it's pulled around the rotor spin and the faster it's pulled the faster the rotors spin.

Tidgy cannot walk yet but he loved his brother or sister pulling the helicopter around the floor and he chased it while giggling! I'm sure that when he is starting to walk this will encourage him.

A great little addition to Tidgy's toy box and I would happily purchase this for other babies/toddlers.

Friday, 10 June 2011

June Issue of What Are You Reading?

Last night I finally finished Glasshopper by Isabel Ashdown. The length of time it took is not a reflection on the book, more the lack of time from the reader. It's a brilliant book and I'm really looking forward to the release of Isabel's book Hurry Up And Wait on June 16th. I pre-ordered it from Amazon and it's the first book that I have ever pre-ordered. No pressure Isabel!!

I'll also be reading my book club choice The Fruit Palace by Charles Nicholl. It's not my usual type of read but that's one of the reasons I joined the book club. I wanted suggestions of something away from my usual type of novel.

I hope to start Girl Reading by Katie Ward. I've been following Katie on twitter for a while now and was spurred on to order her debut novel, particularly as I have booked to see her at the Waterfront Book Club event with her on the 23rd June. I am very excited about meeting her in the flesh!

Click the button below to be taken to Julia's blog to see what others are reading this month.

What are you reading?

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Review: When I Dream Of ABC and Pandamonium

We were delighted to be chosen as members of Top That! Publishing army of Yummy Mummy reviewers. Story time in our house is one of our favourite family times, whether it's at bedtime, on the sofa during quiet time before bed or on a rainy day when we're stuck indoors.

We were sent two books  to review recently and they have both been very popular with my eldest two children and for very different reasons.

When I Dream Of ABC is a beautiful book and a different type of ABC from the standard A is for Apple, B is for Ball etc It's wonderfully written and illustrated by Mr Henry Fisher and is set in a magical world of dreams. The illustration pages are so fabulous that I think they would look great framed and put upon children's bedroom walls. Sadly my photos just don't do them any justice.

It has great educational value for both of my children. Middle B is beginning to learn his alphabet and this helps him to practise, particularly as it is so interesting. Girl B was pleasantly surprised to see fun text with each letter as she was expecting it to be quite boring for her age. She was able to read the text out to us confidently. They loved the pictures and were unable to choose one favourite when asked as they loved them all so much.

When I Dream Of ABC has recently been shortlisted as a finalist for The People's Book Prize. You can find out more about it from here

Pandamonium by Dan Crisp and illustrated by Mark Chambers is a fantastically funny book for the children as the animals cause chaos around the sleeping zookeeper and have a party. They laughed at the mischevious skunk and thought it was hilarious that the zookeeper thought the stink was caused by eating beans! Girl B loves rhyming text and this was a book that she was able to read out to us confidently.

Both of these will be read time and time again and if you're ever looking for books to buy for young children you won't go wrong with these two.

Both are available from Top That! website

Monday, 6 June 2011

My Grandad

Today has seen all emotions from sadness to laughter. 

Today is the anniversary of my beloved Grandad's death. 

This is my favourite photo of Grandad with me

Grandad was a devoted family man and after learning of his start in life I wasn't surprised why he valued his children and grandchildren so much. He was abandoned by his mother, with his siblings, on a beach in Essex when they were all young. They were taken in by the Salvation Army and then housed by Barnardos. He was found a foster home in time. He only ever saw his father once. Grandad was a force to be reckoned with should anyone ever dare to upset one of the family and I always felt safe and protected with him around.

My Grandad was a hard working man and I knew him to have 2 different jobs, driving instructor and long distance lorry driving, although he'd had various other before I was born. 

It seems he was a driving instructor extraordinaire after gaining one of the highest driving awards in 1980, as featured in an edition of the Evening Star. 

I remember him working for BSM and having a Metro, although at the time of the article above he worked for a different motoring school, as seen in this first edition of Ipswich Gazette

There were many, many laughs with him and he had a wicked sense of humour. I used to love spending the weekend with them and usually when we were there so were my aunt and uncles and we may have all been crammed into the living room but there was much fun, tomfoolery...and food, thanks to Nanna!

Grandad continued working into his 70s. He had a major stroke at work in July 2004. I can remember getting the call from my mum. We'd just arrived in Southend for the afternoon. Mum told me that we needn't hurry back, as much as I wanted to. Then came a second call a while later informing me to get there asap. We raced over to the hospital and were told he only had 2 hours to live. I can picture us all around his bed, clear as anything. I don't know how but he survived the night. He stayed with us until June 2007. It really was miraculous how he recovered. He didn't fully recover as he never went back home and instead spent the next 3 years in a nursing home, but he defied medical opinion and lived long enough to see the arrivals of 3 more great grandchildren. He was able to converse with us in his own way and I could still see that great sense of humour!

A week or so before he died he had deteriorated a lot but he'd been up and down since the stroke. I remember going to see him on Sunday and it was the first time since hospital that he hadn't been aware of anyone being with him. I was at the nursing home with my Aunt and we stepped outside for some fresh air. I said I wouldn't go back in to say goodbye as I didn't want to disturb him. I never saw him again.  

On the Wednesday (6th June), I got the children to paint handprints and footprints for him and we took photos of the children to go in his room. Early that evening my Mum turned up unannounced and I just knew by her face that he'd gone. Thinking about it now still has me in pieces.

Those hand & footprints, along with the photos, now take pride of place in my living room.

Grandad, I think about you every single day and will never stop missing you. I regularly tell my children about you and I so wish you'd got to meet Tidgy. I just know you'd be extra-protective of my little munchkin. Middle B is such a funny character that he'd have you in stitches all the time and Girl B would make you so proud of how grown up she is. Me, well over the years I have noticed that I have so many of your foibles and traits and I am so honoured that I am like you. I know that you & Nanna are up there looking over us all. I love you both.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Silent Sunday

One photo taken in the last week, no words. Now take a look at the other Silent Sunday entries at Mocha Beanie Mummy's blog

Saturday, 4 June 2011

£1 + a bucket of water

My eldest two had a fabulous idea this morning. 

They've recently been spending a lot of time playing outside at their playhouse, 'fixing it' with Middle B's tools. 

Today they wanted to paint it. I wasn't happy about them using paint, although it probably would've washed off but as a compromise they asked for water. We went to Poundland in town for a pack of 4 paintbrushes, gave them a bucket of water when we got home and then they 'painted' the entire house. It kept them amused for hours.

If only it was always that easy and inexpensive to occupy them!

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Time Together at the Suffolk Show & competition

We are so lucky to have Trinity Park on our doorstep. We had another fantastic, fun-filled family day out at the Suffolk Show on Wednesday. If hubby could have got another day off work I think I would have gone on the second day as well as there is so much to see, too much to do in just one day.

There is something for everyone. The children's favourites were the show-jumping, donkey rides, Sports Village,  Children's Farm, Little Rovers, face painting in the Evening Star marquee and the fabulous Army Air Corps display.

We had our own Evening Star front page made, with a photo of us all. A brilliant idea and a great keepsake of our day out. 

The children got a glimpse of Princess Anne and Girl B was most excited to have been so close to Royalty. She is obsessed with the Royals since Kate & William's wedding and is even having a RW themed birthday party!

There was much more going on throughout the day in the 7 display rings and it was impossible to see everything. We walked around at the children's pace and let them lead the way so we didn't follow the timetable of shows but we still managed to see a lot of displays, certainly enough for the children to be pleased. 

This year Eat Street was a new catering area and it was a lovely touch having an avenue of food stalls with seating. It was fairly busy when we went to have lunch so we sat on the grass overlooking the Grand Ring but we had plenty of space in the shade. The food was reasonably priced, delicious, and locally sourced, I believe.

The Sports Village was a great area. My eldest two are now becoming interested in the 2012 olympics and various sports so they enjoyed watching the various displays; gymnastics, cycling, tennis, boxing and basketball amongst others.

This year saw a somewhat controversial decision by the organisers of the Suffolk Show. They decided to ban dogs and this upset many people. I, for one, think it worked well. From a personal point of view and as a Mum of 3 young children it made our enjoyment of the day much better. We visited the Hadleigh Show earlier this year and dogs were often sniffing around the children, particularly when we sat to eat on the ground and it's not pleasant or hygenic. There are some owners, admittedly a small number, that cannot or do not control their dogs and do not clean up after them and I'm afraid this small number do spoil it for us. My children should be able to roam freely without having to constantly watch where they step for fear of walking through dog mess or tripping up on leads. 

The situation is being reviewed but I would be quite happy if the ban stayed. An alternative would be to keep dogs out of catering areas but considering there were catering vans all over the showground this would be hard to implement.

If you're in Suffolk next June (Thursday 7th & Friday 8th) do make sure you go along to the Suffolk Show. We'll definitely be there!!

In celebration of our family day out I have joined forces with Vosene Families to offer a great giveaway on this blog. 4 lucky families could be the recipients of a family set of Vosene products which consists of; 

  • Vosene Original Medicated Shampoo
  • Vosene Kids Shampoo
  • Vosene Kids Defence Spray
  • Vosene Kids Mega Hold Styling Gel
  • Vosene Kids Extra Shine Detangler Spray
You can see details of the products on the Vosene website

To be in with a chance of winning a set you need to do one or more of the following:
  • leave a comment below on what you like to do together as a family (one entry)
  • Follow me on twitter @Him_Me_Three and also @VoseneFamilies (one entry)
  • Follow this blog with GFC (one entry)
  • Tweet the following "I'd like to win with @Him_Me_Three and @VoseneFamilies at" (one entry)

Maximum of four entries.
UK entries only please.
Winners will be picked at random on Monday 4th July at 8pm and announced on the blog.
Good luck!!

Celebrating families with Vosene

When it comes to families, Vosene knows what matters. We’ve been helping people of all ages to keep their hair healthy and clean for over 60 years, and we’re proud to be a trusted friend to families everywhere.

Now we want to help celebrate some of the special qualities that make family life so much fun. Each month, from April to September 2011, we’ll choose a family theme to focus on, then we’d love you to send in stories and photos that show what it means to you. Get your friends and family to vote for your story, then the ten most popular at the end of the month will be sent to our charity partner, the NSPCC, where a representative will choose the winner.
Plus, all our monthly winners will be entered into our final in October. Just get your friends and family to vote again, and you could be crowned the Vosene Family of 2011, and win an amazing family holiday worth up to £10,000!
Take a look at the Vosene Families website and enter your story! 
This month's theme is 'Time Together' which is exactly what we had at the Suffolk Show.

*Edit: 07.44 Friday 3 June
I've had to take off the 'like' facebook page entry as it's been pointed out that it's no longer allowed. Those that had liked the page up to now will still have that entry counted.

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