The Big Garden Camp Out

Where a drop of rain turns into a torrential downpour….where a little gust of wind turns into a tornado threatening to blow you away and where a rustling in the bushes turns into Shere Khan approaching……Those are the imaginative thoughts of a very excited 10 and 7 year old about to camp out…

My other half arrived home with a tent the other day which he had borrowed from a work colleague. The boys had never camped outside in a tent and he decided that now was the time to change that…..

Each year since the boys were little we have always had an annual holiday in a caravan or static mobile home at a camping village. Even though we have done this the boys have never actually camped outside in a tent. I wasn’t aware of this but it had obviously been going through my other halfs head and this is what resulted in him returning home from the office with a two-man tent under his arm and a grin on his face!

When I asked my other half what he was thinking, he said  that he was honoured to introduce the boys to the excitement of back garden camping!
I could almost hear the beating of fists on chest as he said it!

The scene at my house – fact!

The boys were beside themselves with excitement and it was one of those moments you want to bottle so that you never forget the scent of those great family moments. They kinda help when you have those days when you’re left pulling your hair out and exhausted when it hasn’t all gone as planned!

The preparations are underway for the big night.


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Big M looks happy with the result!

So off they went into the garden around 9pm and I didn’t see them until Big M came into my room in the morning around 8am buzzing about the night outside, he was so chuffed. It was wonderful! The night went without a hitch. I’m amazed that they slept at all considering the ground is beaten down to hard earth where the boys play football, there’s hardly a blade of grass to be seen.

The next night it was pouring with rain so Little G couldn’t go and do the same but had to contain his excitement for a further 24hrs which isn’t particularly easy for him, but he managed brilliantly. The night came round for him to make his leap into camping firsts and just before he goes outside….his wobbly tooth comes out – talk about timing!! We decided to put the tooth under his pillow in his room as we agreed that the tooth fairy might get confused if it wasn’t there and not know where he was!

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Little G ready for the challenge!!

Once again off they trotted and this time I was more concerned that he might want to come back in or that at some point the dark might spook him. There was nothing to worry about, the boys are growing up and my other half is guiding them in ways that are helping them to become rounded individuals. Little G, like his brother, came running into me in the morning, bouncing on the bed raving about his night out.

The biggest excitement was being allowed to wee in a bucket in the middle of the night…even though the house is only 20 steps away!! Men!! I can’t wait until that little gem comes out in the middle of the supermarket!

 

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We are one

I’m so thankful for the life that I have got. I can sit here on my computer enjoying writing on my blog knowing that my boys are tucked up in bed, my OH is downstairs relaxing and watching a movie. I have a lovely life and I’m so pleased. There was a time when it was a little more bumpy, I was on my own and things were tough. This poem shows the journey I took from then until now……

It’s hard to bear these nights alone

I chat and play, tapping my phone

For far too long this inner fight

to stay awake, to shorten the night.

I hope one day the path will clear

I’ll rid myself of the doubt, the fear

The rising sun will warm this heart

Give my ‘self’ the will to start.

It’s all within reach but it won’t be pushed

It surges down that stream, it won’t be shushed

It’s bashed me about, it’s taken its toll

Fate, life, the predefined goal.

And then came the light…..

my two young seeds

My partner in crime

They are all I need.

I  nurture them now

Show them ‘what’ and ‘how’

Take them forth in their youth

Let them seek the truth.

With my man by my side

I think it can be done

We are a family

We are one

Little G’s Olympic runner…..

…runner bean that is!

Little G has been in the garden again to have a good look at how his runner beans have come along. We’ve managed to do this while watching as much of the olympics as we can see, it’s such an exciting time!

He also wanted to get a good look inside to see what the seeds looked like close up and to harvest them for next year. Our little greenhouse and packets of seeds have produced lots of plants and we have enjoyed our evenings looking at how they have come on.

Little G is inquisitive and loves to get to the bottom of things so wanted to get a good look at what was inside the little green pockets. You can see him in his latest ‘vlog for his mummy’s blog’ below, covered in black AstroTurf from his day at football school. Boys will be boys!

I think his little friend managed a speedy getaway to the finish line of the edge of the lawn while we were looking at the video playback….lucky for him!

Have you any little plants sprouting and of course, have you been enjoying the olympics?

You can also see Little G’s first vlog here to see the start of his green fingered career!

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Behind The Scenes Blogging Tag

I love a chance to get to know my fellow bloggers better and have been thinking about how to offer some insights into my own blogging journey. When I saw the lovely frenchiemummy post, I put myself forward and was tagged into the ‘Behind the Scenes Blogging Tag’.  This is a great tag to be able to share some of those little known facts about ourselves.

So here goes, a little soul bearing from me…..Mainy x

Where do you blog?

I do the majority of my writing sat on my sofa in the conservatory if I get any time during the day, or in my lovely comfy cosy bed once the kids are asleep.

Where do you find inspiration for your blog posts?

Alot of my posts have come from my experiences throughout a normal day and have just poured from me at the time. The best example of this was ode to him which was written on scrap of paper from my bag while being scared stiff on a plane.

How long does it take you to write your blog posts?

It depends if it’s a post like the one mentioned above or it’s a research based post such a my seahorse one which took a couple of weeks. It’s the editing which gets me. I tend to overthink it once it’s finished and I am working on myself to lighten up a bit and press ‘publish’ a bit easier!

Do you plan your blog posts? How?

I plan the structure of my posts as much as possible and I try to post once a week. More than that is normally just too much for me to co-ordinate and still remain able to see to everything else.

What kind of camera do you use?  What editing programme?

I only use the camera on my iphone. I haven’t got a specific photo editing programme…maybe I should!

Do you use a notebook to track your ideas?

When I first started I did but now I put thoughts straight down in a draft post page through my phone as I’ve usually got that with me. Sometimes they sit in the draft section for a while but it’s lovely to have the seeds of posts there waiting for the right time to develop them a bit more.

How do you take your pictures?

Point, shoot and take about 3 times as many photos of a single thing that I actually need. I’m like most normal mums, I have a million pictures of my kids and a few selfies on my phone.

What’s your favourite type of blog post to write?

The ones I don’t have to think about too much because the words are spilling out of me. I never thought that I would be able to say that or that it even happened to people. It’s a pretty good feeling.

Who knows about your blog?

I love this question because the more I immerse myself in the blogging world, the more I realise that there are alot of people like me who don’t publicise the fact they have a blog with people in some areas of their life. I have told my immediate family and close friends but have kept it back from all areas of my work and business. I see blogging as a relaxation part of me, the last thing I would want to see within my space is anything that takes me into work mode.

Are you an organised or messy blogger?

When I post a piece, then at that moment I’m organised and focused. I know how, when or if I want to publicise it……then I see the twitter messages of all the great linkies that I love and I go into scatty mode – reacting to all the great opportunities out there to have people see what I’ve written. It’s crazy, fun and exhilarating…I love it!

Biggest blogging pet peeve?

I can honestly say that at the moment I don’t have one. I have only been blogging a relatively short time – since feb 2016 – and as I’m learning so much and virtually meeting so many great people, the shine hasn’t worn off and things which may annoy me in a years time haven’t presented themselves as yet:)

I hope you’ve enjoyed the little insight, it was great to share.

If you would like to be part of this tag then please just tag in. If you would like to tweet me or comment and I’ll tag you in then that works too, whatever suits you, it’s an open tag.

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Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

 

 

 

 

Is it just me?

Do you ever wonder if the bizarre, naughty or plain un-mummy things you think of are just you….I do!

Well here’s my confession….I don’t enjoy the responsibility all of the time.

 

1st disclaimer – if you’ve ever pursed your lips and tutted at someone who’s being un-mummyish then please don’t read on…. I need to have this vent.

I mean, I look at a lot of people and they seem to ‘cope’. Not only cope but even seem to enjoy being around their children all the time and doing mum stuff. One of the reasons I came off Facebook was because I couldn’t bear being mummy shamed by people looking relaxed and joyfully baking with their lovely little darlings, not just highdays and holidays, but regular as clockwork. Also making things and posting photos that show smiling clean children who look like they actually appreciate the perfectly turned out mum or dad next to them.

Here are a few of my sins:

I clock watch for when it’s time the kids have to go to bed. I also get a little excited as I look forward to it. My eyes flit from the bottle of wine, to the snack cupboard to my iPad, all gently purring my name in a frequency no one else in the house can hear.

I would rather not read a children’s story book all the way through at bedtime, I’m tired at 8 myself! The afore mentioned chorus of goodies downstairs is deafening to my ears by this point. I want my children to read well and I want to celebrate with them…just earlier in the evening.

I’d like to spend more time and money on grown up stuff like make-up and clothes. Instead I blow it on boys toys, classes and kids ‘stuff’. I spend time on my bits, I just need to balance it out a bit more.

I don’t particularly enjoy having their friends round, only because I find it stressful. Their friends are great – it’s me! What if they get hurt, fall out with each other or hear me swear under my breath as I stub my toe and then they repeat on a loop, steadily driving me into anxiety overload. Or worse, after having a successful couple of hours, burst into tears as soon as their parents arrive. It happens! I don’t know why, but it’s a kids phenomenon, they do it to torment adults.

Sometimes I just don’t get it – I don’t understand the rules of parenting, I forget that children are immature, yeah doh! I find myself standing in the middle of a room trying to reason with two boys who just want to tease, argue, play and do their own thing without mature interruption.

Finally, I’d like to be strong enough to actually follow through, just once, with whatever I’ve threatened to take away ‘by the time I count to three!’ Even my eldest at 10 has said that I don’t ever do it. So I’m inconsistent now and freak out at the small stuff.

2nd Disclaimer: Of course I love my kids! Of course I wouldn’t change a bloomin thing and of course my kids are my world. They fill me to bursting point with love and make me boil over with a loyalty to protect them.

But this parenting lark can be bloomin hard and sometimes I need to let off steam! Away from the kids, into my own little space. Sometimes it’s good to shout from the rooftops or into blogging world that it’s tough – without having to apologise or justify…..at least not too much;)

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Five of My Favourite 2016 Moments ….So Far

2016 has been a great year so far, I wanted to take a snapshot of 5 of my favourite 2016 moments. Some of those things that I wanted to celebrate and share what has made us happy.

I realised when I started writing that actually there are many many more…this could easily be a weekly post! But here are just a few to start with.

It’s a year for roses and the other day my eldest son ‘M’ and I went around each of our roses and spent time to smell the scent of the different types. The look on M’s face as he really took to the moment was pretty incredible. The experience struck me as I was stood there with him and I am so thankful to have this beautiful memory. The garden has been a great source of fun and relaxation. Little ‘G’ also did his first vlog outside.

AFC Bournemouth brings joy to all of us, the club had its first year ever in the premier league and its rags to riches story was well publicised when they went up. As a family we have been attending for years and even have a brick on the ‘cherry brick road’ at the front of the club. For us it’s a family affair with 3 generations attending our home games as season ticket holders. The great crowd and friends make it a very special club.

My birthday ring from Tiffany & Co! I was so so pleased to receive this gorgeous ring which I had hoped one day would come my way. My partner brought it for me and  I love it!

Burns night at mine with the girls – we had such a great evening and threw ourselves into celebrating this great Scottish tradition. I love spending time with my girlfriends and letting our hair down. I feel blessed to have such great friends and family.

Enjoying our holiday to Spain with the boys and my mum. We’ve found a great place to holiday that suits all of our needs and we enjoy having this trip together year after year.

Thats a few bits and bobs which spring to mind. Mainly we are lucky that all of us are fit and healthy and are together enjoying the year and all that it throws at us.

How are you enjoying your year so far?

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Dorset Facts & Trivia – A myrealfairy infographic

Hello and thanks for stopping by. As someone who lives in Dorset, I’m still taken aback by the lovely countryside and coastline of this lovely county. While I’ve visited some parts of Great Britain I’ve still got alot to cover.

I thought I’d try and express this post in an infographic which I haven’t attempted before. For the subject I thought I would write about something I know and which I love – Dorset.

 

 

I’d love to know a little fact about your local area and maybe feature them in a roundup post.

 

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Ilfracombe…where the romance is!

Hi, thanks so much for stopping by. Last week my partner and I went on a little 2 night break without the kids down to Ilfracombe. It’s always like a military operation to plan these things but so worth it. The kids giggle that we are having our romantic break and love their time with nanny and we appreciate to have a couple of days to ourselves. Like most parents, even on our time alone we talk about, email and speak to the kids. Still, I feel it’s important that all of the family gets their relaxation time and this is ours.

We booked through one of these sites that you contact the owner themselves and they rent out their place to you. We were so lucky to get an amazing little apartment which overlooked the sea, the crazy golf park and a weatherspoons…it doesn’t get much better than that!!

We were also right by a beautiful little Italian place which had such a gorgeous smell coming out of it that on the first evening we were so shattered that we had them make us pizza and pasta and we took it up to the apartment. It was great to sit there, looking out at the amazing view with our food and chill out.

Ilfracombe is such a gorgeous place. Most of the town dates from victorian times when it grew rapidly as a seaside resort. It seemed that most of the town around the harbour was on a slope and it nestled into the hills.

In the morning we took a walk down to the Tunnels Beaches. You have to pay £2.50 to walk down through them but it’s a fantastic sight once you walk through and see the view.

The tunnels lead down to a lovely little sandy beach which has a bathing pool which was made out of bringing lime into the bay and making an edge which, as the tide goes out, keeps in an amount of water in a large pool making it idea for bathing. This was created for ‘segregated bathing’ where men and women were not allowed to bath in the same bay or cove. In 1839 there was a guide book which stated that segregated bathing was tightly controlled and a ‘bugler’ would sit between the men’s and ladies pools keeping an eye out that the two did not mix. If a man attempted to spy on the ladies then the bugler would blow his trumpet and the man would be arrested!

 

View down through the tunnels.

There’s so much more to discover in Ilfracombe and the statue in the harbour is worth a post in its own right. Overall I would highly recommend a few days spent there, with or without the little ones.

 

Heres a little teaser which we saw on one of the signs –  Can you make out the Ilfracombe elephant in my picture?

 

 

 

Do you ever get to have breaks on your own or if you have kids do you prefer having them with you?

 

 

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The Silence

I have had a sore throat for a few weeks now and have just seen a consultant for it. He thinks that it is a swollen windpipe and suggested a steroid injection would ease it. The thought of having an injection into my neck gave me a small meltdown so I asked if there was anything we could try first. He said that I should not speak at all for at least 2 days and we would see how that went.

I am determined to give this the best shot I can so I can avoid anything invasive. The thing is, like most of us, how on earth am I going to do the 101 things that I normally do…..without speaking!

The kids, my business, talking to everyone I work with to get things done, other mums on the way in and out of school….oh goodness this is going to be tough.

It starts sooner than expected as my other half and the kids – ‘M’ and ‘G’ come and pick me up from my appointment and come bounding into the clinic. I thought I’d put the initial thoughts and the plan we came up with into a poem. I hope you enjoy it.

 

Mum mum what did they do

Mum mum, please tell us

Mum mum what’s wrong with you

Mum mum we won’t make a fuss

 

Oh my loves if only I could

I shake my head and mime

I point to my mouth like I should

And am careful to take my time

 

Oh boys please understand me

Oh boys when I try and say

Please little ones try and see

I can’t speak – at all – for today

 

We get in the car and I have a plan

It’s simple and to the point

Boys video yourselves, like I know you can

Shout your name – on your own – not joint

 

Thats right my clever boys

You know what to do

say it loud, make some noise

shoot the clip on my phone,  right through

 

Then, if I need you I’ll  press play

You’ll hear it wherever you are

and to me you’ll come without delay

To me, if near or far

 

 

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Fantasy Dinner Party Guest List

Hi there and thanks for stopping by. Recently the lovely Carol over at Virtually All Sorts posted her fantasy dinner party guest list and asked me who I’d have on mine. I have enjoyed having this going through my mind over the past week and I’m pleased to share it with you now….

Firstly it’s got to be Paul Weller, he would smoke, swear and be so cool that I would forget how to eat with a knife and fork and probably miss my mouth when I tried to quaff my wine. I’d love to have him there but I would be a mess so I’m not too sure. I am pretty sure though that I would tell him that I loved him at some inappropriate point in the evening…  English Rose is amazing, have a listen if you can!

Annie Lennox, she’s the striking singer who I am sure would be fascinating to sit next to. I’d have to up my game when it came to interesting topics to talk about. I can only think of my one link to her, which would be that I once sat in a restaurant in Ibiza next to Siobhan Fahey who was married to Dave Stewart who was her partner in the Eurythmics….that should bring the conversation to a shuddering standstill…Ok.. she’s on the ‘maybe’ list.

Tim Peake, wow! 186 days in space aboard the International Space Station is pretty good going. Not content with whizzing around the earth at 17,000 miles an hour, he also ran the london marathon, completed the first spacewalk of a british astronaut and read a bedtime story to millions of children via cbeebies. Furthermore, he comes across as such a likable man. Luckily I won’t have to ask about how to wee in space as he kindly already answered that on one of his many video links, phew! He’s on the list.

My nan, she loved new experiences and would always come out with exactly what was on her mind, she’d be great at keeping the conversations flowing. She would recount tales of her and her best friend going to the dance halls in Poplar in the east end of London before the war and all the wonderfully funny situations they would get themselves into. OK, any ‘maybes’ can now come. I could entertain all of the above people, and more with her by my side as my co-host. I Love and miss her, she was so fab.

What about you, who would be head of the table? I’d love to know.

Just one more thing before you go….incase you weren’t convinced by the first Paul Weller song. I have been listening to him while writing this post, so here’s another little gem for you to have on in the background…

 

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