10 Facts About Seahorses ….. and how to help them

1.  Their scientific name, “Hippocampus” comes from the Ancient Greek word hippos meaning “horse” and kampos meaning “sea monster”.

2.  Even though they are fish they are really poor swimmers and can often die of exhaustion in storms. They also might just hang around clinging onto to a piece of seaweed or eelgrass for a few days just resting.

3.  It’s the males who give birth…yep its true! The female seahorse pops the eggs into the male and he waits out the gestation period and then contorts his body until the live young are pushed out. They even have contractions!

seahorse3myrealfairy

4.  Their eyes work independently of each other! One eye can look forward and the other back!

5.  The smallest seahorse is the Pygmy Seahorse and is around 2cm long and the largest is the Australian big-bellied Seahorse at around 35cm. However, there was a massive one caught in Poole, Dorset in 2015. It was thrown back unhurt which but was 34cm which is huge for a ‘spiny’ seahorse.

6.  You can keep up to date with local conservation to see how you can help out. In the U.K. there is a project close to where I am which is the Dorset Wildlife Trust. The Trust supports Seahorses and other marine life. Read here to learn about Studland Bay and the amazing conservation work the they carry out.

7.  It’s thought that they are at risk of extinction so what can we do to help? Well, firstly, steer clear of buying dried seahorses as souvenirs. Secondly, as they are used in some countries as herbal medicines, it’s best to try to find an alternative product so that using them starts to get less and less profitable. Thirdly, do not buy as pets for aquariums as they may of been taken from the wild and imported to the UK.

blueseahorse.myrealfairy.com

8.  Seahorses are thought to hold magic qualities and there are stories of them wrapping their tail around people’s fingers and emitting a healing feeling to the person. This is the tale of folklore and not certified

9.  There are organisations and charities who assist in the conservation of seahorses, there are some pointers below if you wish to become more involved in areas of marine life conservation.

Seahorses, have now been listed as endangered under the United Nations Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species. They are also protected under U.K. law.

10.  There are further folklore tales of dried seahorses being used as good luck charms to assist in the production of breast milk for nursing mothers. Thankfully this was rare. Many cultures see it as a carnation from the seas gods and link it with strength and power.

A couple of additional links which I found useful are below.

http://www.projectseahorse.org

http://www.blueoceannetwork.com

http://www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk

I must also thank Emma Rance, Marine Conservation Officer with the Dorset Wildlife Trust in assisting with the factual accuracy of the post. Not the folklore aspect of course.

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Little G’s first vlog….is that even a real word?!

Little G who’s 7 now is an eager beaver when it comes to helping around the house and in the garden. He is also desperate to go into the world of blogging with videos. Now many of the seasoned pros will know it by its cool name but I had to undergo the humiliation of my eldest ‘M’ who’s ten, languishing on the sofa, glued to YouTube saying ‘oh muuuuummm it’s “vlogging”, don’t you even know what it’s called.’

Right! so after I had thrown his second-hand phone out of the window and chirped manically triumphantly ‘oh darling thank you for putting me straight,’ off I popped out to the back garden to give it a go with ‘G’.

We love our plants and even though none of us (me!) are particularly green fingered, we love rescuing the dying plants reduced down in the supermarkets to silly pence when no one has gone out and given them a bit of water, or they’ve been forgotten at the back of the shelves.

‘G’ was excited and without further ado, here is his 30 seconds debut vlog blog thingie!

What I need to do is master the whole art of YouTube so that I can edit out all the bits and bobs I can see lying around in the garden and also not have the words over little G’s head. But as he said to me the other day – ‘mummy, did you have YouTube when you were little in the olden days’ ahhh bless!!!

Thanks to Karen from Two Tiny Hands who inspired me to put together this little piece as she is encouraging kids to get involved for her linky #abrandnewday. It gave me the little push I needed to take the step with the kids and the video.

A couple of examples of our little offerings.

How have you got on gardening with the kids? I remember when the boys were little that I used to spend more time taking the soil out of their mouths than putting it into pots.

I’m also being brave and asking that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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The Dimpled Monster Has Struck!

Recently I went on holiday with my mum and children to Spain which you can read about here. It was a great time with 3 generations of our family together and loving each others company.

However, just before I went I fished around in the swimming box that I have at home. This box, stashed on top of the boys wardrobe is where I have my various one piece practical ‘mum’ swimming costumes for when I’m at the pool for their regular swimming lessons each week. This time though I was searching around for my bikini.

I thought I’d give it a quick try on just to make sure that it wasn’t moth eaten or missing a hook an eye here or there. I got it on ok and thought I’d check it out in front of the long mirror in my bedroom. Well…. I was, mortified, heartbroken, fuming, slightly surprised to see that I had not only gained weight but had also gained cellulite and just looked ‘different’.

It was an eye opener to say the least. Over the years we change – children, life events, careers, the misery diet, the happiness spread, sadness, age and health all change us both inside and out. I’m now at a different stage in my life and have to embrace my age and my new body shape. Below is a lighthearted poem loosely based on that moment last week. It’s sentiment for me is humour, life and love.

The Dimpled Monster Has Struck!

It’s been tucked up for months

Proving, doubling in size

Stuffed in jeans

Gobbling down the pies.

———-

It’s been dark, it’s been grey

No one asked it out to play.

So what do you expect

As you stand there in shock

The changing room door

Clearly on ‘lock’.

———-

Did you not know

This bubbling mound

Would be the result

On your waist, all around.

———-

It’s a spell, it’s a curse

Please help! Bring me a nurse!

This bikini has shrunk, surely or worse!

No, wait…..I see it now, I’m so sorry

I must of got it wrong

I needn’t of worried.

———

 I have to sort this today

This holiday won’t keep

I know what to say

So I call out, not to weep

“Please be a dear and bring me a sarong,

hurry up now as I don’t have too long.”

I’m also being brave and whispering from the bottom of my recent posts that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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Five Fairy Facts On Our Hols

We’ve come away on our hols to have a little break…..my youngest boy G who’s 7 is now so grown up that when he’s trying to be deadly serious and explain anything, he now has to end these sentences with “true fact”! rather triumphantly. So, in great G fashion

True Fact Number 1:

I’m an awful mother as I’ve taken my boys out of school for three days during term time. I must be awful because a headmaster being interviewed on  Good Morning Britain said I was. Piers Morgan told him he was barking and Suzanna Reid tried to edge her knee away from Piers’s  wandering hand placements. The only giveaway sign bieng Piers’s wink of the eye in the headmasters direction. With all that going on I’m not too sure I’m that bad.

True Fact Number 2

We arrived in the beautifully hot country of Spain, yippie. We always have a week in May away and another longer time in the summer with a different theme. Our hotel is amazing, it’s our 3rd year running here. People might raise an adventurous eyebrow and think why oh why would you do that. Easy peasy, because it works! The hotel is great, there is the beach, there are pools, the hotel is spotless and there is a free drop-in kids club ALL DAY!

True Fact Number 3

Yesterday we had our first proper motor boat experience around Malaga Marina and out on the open sea. I’m not a fan of boats but I went with the consensus and swallowed hard and skipped aboard with a beating heart and bile rising. To my surprise it was great! Photos taken with me  with the captains hat on, sneaky little drinkies and the wind in my hair and I was right in the spirit of things. The boys were WELL BEHAVED so it was great. Actually I think rewind to the sneaky little drinkies, add 30 degrees hot sun, stir in the fact it was daytime drinking = the boys ‘appeared’ WELL BEHAVED!


True Fact Number 4

I get to practice my very rusty Spanish which I love to do. In a time and place long ago – ok not that long ago but long enough – I spoke it every day in South America for a couple of years. That’s not the case now. Now it’s on my hols or with Spanish speaking people who I randomly come into contact with through work or play in England. I have to force my very colloquial accented Spanish on people here and when they reply in English I have to insist that I torture them into listening to me as I need the practice.


True Fact Number 5

This is the best true fact and it’s that all of this holiday is also spent with my mum. Every year since my boys have been born we’ve had a weeks holiday abroad with mum. It’s amazing and we all love it. The best and most important person to remember to pack as far as we are concerned is nanny! That’s one of the reasons why this hotel has been perfect for the last 3 years. The personal service of a complimentary car (no, we’re not loaded) that will pop mum and us down to the beach and pick us up so there isn’t too much walking involved. Everything’s on one level. She and us are taken care of and the boys get to splash around in the pool with their nan. Mum wouldn’t fly on her own now and I don’t blame her, so she gets to keep travelling and more than that, we get the pleasure of travelling with her. She has the patience of a saint and the boys wouldn’t think of playing her up anyway. The boys can’t imagine spain without nanny and nor could I.


This is what makes us happy…..True Fact!

 

I’m also being brave and whispering from the bottom of my recent posts that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. They are open now until 22nd June so please pop over. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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Trip to Bavaria and Chiemsee

I went on a wonderful trip recently to Bavaria with my partner to his daughter’s wedding. You may of read here and here about my anxiety around flying and then the emotional poem I wrote about my other half while at 32000 feet! Its amazing what a rush of hormones can do to a woman! Anyhow, I digress….. The wedding itself was just beautiful, full of lovely people, gorgeous weather and a calm relaxed atmosphere with no drama. There is definitely something to be said for having a small wedding with just your nearest and dearest being part of it.

As I was just there for the weekend we planned on taking a trip here to Chiemsee (pronounced to my brit ear as ‘kiemsee’) It’s a beautiful big freshwater lake in Bavaria. It’s sometimes known as the Bavarian Sea. It’s massive, with a shoreline of 64KM (40miles). We drove down from Rosenheim which took about half an hour and took us through very green and pretty countryside.

I wanted to share some of the photos of this pretty lake and also the island of Fraueninsel (aka Frauenchiemsee) which we visited by taking a short ferry trip of about 10 minutes.

bavaria.myrealfairy

 

The scenery was amazing and this was the view from the ferry on the journey from the mainland shore to the island.

One of the many boat jetty’s on the island of Fraueninsel. I’m so pleased with how this picture came out considering it was taken on my phone. I’m normally just snap happy but this has surprised me.

The sight as you come into dock on the island. There are 3 islands on the Chiemsee in total. Fraueninsel is also known as the ‘womans island’ due to a being a Benedictine convent being situated there.


This is a 1000 year old tree on the island. It now has a small fence around it to protect the roots from the effects of the footfall of all the visitors.

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Here’s the bell tower which really does stand out and is very impressive.

Everything there is very clean and tidy and apparently it’s home to around 300 people. I say apparently because we only saw about 3 of these, I think they were hiding behind ornate net in their windows. It was hard to see how you could live there peacefully because even though the visitors appeared respectful and pretty mild mannered, there were still a regular spill of tourists from the 2 or 3 ferries making the frequent trips. I can only imagine how the inhabitants feel when the last ferry trip departs and the island can breath a sigh of relief and settle for the night.

One of the main differences I felt between Bavaria and England was the amount of people on bikes and walking properly kitted up. I’m pretty used to it around my neck of the woods at home but this was quite a bit more in general. I’m glad I managed to get a glimpse of the island and to take a walk around it in full. It was a beautiful end to the weekend in Bavaria.

Have you visited Baravaria and explored?

I’m also being brave and whispering from the bottom of my recent posts that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. They are open now until 22nd June so please pop over. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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New App Review – Club Hub UK

There’s going to be a new app on the scene soon, Club Hub UK. This has really caught my attention! I heard recently from Tessa Robinson, the creator who quite rightly is getting the news of her app out and about before the launch to let us all know that we can soon make use of it.

The app is designed to make finding activities easier…Ok that’s good enough for me already!:)

club hub 3myrealfairy

But let me tell you more….

The app is designed to locate children’s clubs and activities around the U.K

Tessas background is in acting and she started a children’s musical theatre group. She started teaching children after school, and enjoyed sharing her knowledge in everything she could in terms of acting, singing and dancing.

During this time her idea was forming which has now become ‘Club Hub UK’. Tessa thought that there should be a way that she could promote her after school club to all the parents in her local area. She then thought about creating an app where people could locate all the children’s clubs in their area too – a simple app where parents could input their child’s age and interests, and the search results would list local clubs and their details.

clubhub2myrealfairy

Tessa has really pushed her idea forward and has come second with Club Hub UK in the #InSport competition with Ideas Britain. An app where people are able to show their ideas to the world. That too is very much worth checking out if you need coaches to assist in your app ideas.

Ella Harding is the graphic designer and I really love the drawings she has done for the site.

I think this is a project that is well worth keeping an eye out for, it could be one of those apps that you start seeing everywhere and it comes to be a go to app at the weekend! Good luck Tessa!

Here are all the contact details below, I spoke with Tessa today and she said the launch is planned for August 2016. There is also some amazing news to be unveiled about a new partnership that Club Hub UK is entering into. Keep an eye on this one!!

E-mail: tessarobinson@club-hub-app.co.uk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/clubhubuk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/clubhubapp/

Instagram: https://instagram.com/clubhubuk

What do you think, is this an app that you’d think of downloading?

I’m also being brave and whispering from the bottom of my recent posts that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. They are open now until 22nd June so please pop over. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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Discussion & Book Review – The Golden Winged Fairy

 

What’s so lovely about having my own site is being able to write and post about people and things which I have an interest in.  I can write without the normal constraints…..Lucky old me:) New York based author Lala Fae contacted me and asked if I would review her book ‘The Golden Winged Fairy’. When I looked into both her and the book she had written I thought it fitted well with my blog and interests.

I liked the way that she came across and she’s been really pleasant to get to know. If you have read my previous book review here you will see that that one was carried out with my eldest son ‘M’. However, ‘The Golden Winged Fairy’ was clearly more suitable to be read with my youngest son ‘G’ who is 7.

Lala kindly sent me a complimentary copy of the book as opposed to a digital download review copy. The book is sold as a hardcopy and considering the illustrations which are phenomenal, its the only way to appreciate this book. It’s good to feel this books pages and the embossed paper, great for small children. The pages of the new book smelt wonderful too, there’s just something about it, maybe a throwback to my own childhood. It’s a proper story telling experience for the younger audience.

IMG_0170

The story focuses on a fairy with a difference, as G said…’a difference that she felt embarrassed about.’ We talked about the difference the fairy heroine Lorelei has and how this made her feel. All Lorelei wants is to fit in with the Silver Moon Fairies. As the story progresses I found that it led me to the natural conclusion that we should celebrate our differences.  It’s a great back up to many conversations I had with my two when they were younger in nursery and started to either be on the receiving end or the perpetrator of comments relating to individual differences.

golden winged fairy

 

I usually ask my partner to look through my posts and he’s done just that. Particularly if I feel that I’m missing something. When I know what I want to say but it’s not transferring through to the page. His feedback…..’it reads as if you’re being politically correct…why?

I thrive and enjoy being me and being honest.  I had to stop and think and then we entered into a discussion. Was it his German straight forwardness or my english political correctness that led us both to think that my writing in this review lacked punch?! It lacked that special something needed to give the book, Lala and me the true airing this subject deserved. This post now is a very different piece than it was originally and it’s more grounded for it.

Understanding individual differences is not limited to what children should be doing, as adults we must remind ourselves that differences are not the exclusive details such as the colour of our skin or language we speak, it’s also the essence and personalities of who we are. Sometimes its easy to forget and as adults it’s actually really good to talk about. Often we are so caught up at home in parenting that proper intelligent conversations just don’t happen. Today we had one and it felt good! All because of reading a children’s book.

It demonstrates that this book manages to do that on its most basic level and to start small children with such a such a book, in my opinion is no bad thing.

I would say that the book is aimed at either very young learner readers or at children who are being read to as their relaxation or nighttime story. It’s relaxing, has a positive message and isn’t too long. It can be read in one 10 minute sitting and it’s of a fairytale quality that can be read again and again. It really is beautiful.

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The book is enhanced to a magical quality by the illustrations drawn by Laura Siadak.  Lala told me she is excited to announce that she has finished her second book and that one is also currently with Laura who is providing the illustrations once more. This lady can really draw.

You can see more on the youtube video here, it’s really worth watching:

If you fancy making contact with Lala then you can find her on some of her social media platforms here:

www.facebook.com/madebyfae

twitter.com/madebyfae

The book can be purchased here amongst other places.

 

In the words of Lala…May you always glow golden.

I am really pleased to have Lala onboard with responding to your comments for this post! You might hear back from either Lala or myself. Thank you as always for all comments and thoughts about the post x

Do you remember reading fairy tales as a child, was there one in particular. Have you heard of Lalas golden winged fairy?

 

I’m also being brave and whispering from the bottom of my recent posts that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. They are open now until 22nd June so please pop over. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

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Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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Top 10 Spring jobs….to keep ahead of the pack 

1. Sort out my bullet journal! Well it’s a note-book with thousands of tiny luminous post-it notes sticking out at various angles. I’d be hard pushed to decipher what they actually meant. Still, it needs a sort out.

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2. Passenger advance information-upcoming holiday and the dreaded online information. The cheaper the airline I book the more work it takes to comply with their small print. note to self: double, then triple check this to avoid check-in meltdown at the airport with children. 

3. Travel insurance and  E111 do they still exist, what use are they??? Research – after all…. knowledge is power!

4. Check passports to see if they are still valid…too scared to look (Number 4.5 be braver woman!)

5. Get the boy’s memory boxes sorted – this would be a wonderful job to get behind me. Every time they come home with a certificate or memento they look up at me with cherubic faces and ask for it to go in the memory box. Again, like so many things you’ll read from me, in my head the memory boxes are adorned with cute little drawings and stacked in date order. In reality, well…..it’s a work in progress.

6. Get the jars together for jam making and chutneys – oh yes I’m going for it. I know you’re looking at the points above and thinking there’s not a chance, but I think jam making might just be my thing!!! There’s so many great tasty looking recipes pouring out from my fellow bloggers that I have to give it a real go. Thank you for the pressure all you amazing people;)

I can do this...really, I can!!
I can do this…really, I can!!

7. Book the boys play dates in advance – everyone else manages it so why can’t I? *sobbing*

8. Paint something outside, doesn’t matter what…it’s a spring job. Things need painting!

9. Pack away winter coats but not in the loft yet, who knows what will happen. Brit weather has a mind of its own.

10. Organise an extended family get together….it will be worth it, daunting but worth it.

That should keep me going and as I’m pretty much behind with half of it then that’s definitely plenty. How about you, has anything on my list jogged your memory for things you would like to get out of the way?

I’m also being brave and asking that I would love you to consider nominating me in the ‘Thirty Plus’ inaugural awards. Just click here to nominate me. There are 7 categories and I was thinking, maybe, possibly Category 1 The Next Big Thing. My full blog title is www.myrealfairy.com and my name is Mainy. Phew, cringe over and thank you so much if you do nominate me:) x

 

If you like my posts, blogs or even just the pictures then I would not be offended in the least if you subscribed to receive the regular updates. I’d actually be chuffed and honoured:)

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My ode to him…My other half

I wrote this poem to the ‘other half’ as we were on a flight recently to Munich to attend a wedding.

If you had read my previous post here about my fear of flying then you’d know how I was getting into a bit of a state. I had so many great and supportive comments on that post, it really did help. Thanks very much:)

I’m not normally the soppy sort but the way that the other half handled my quietness and obvious anxiety was really touching. The hormones must of been raging because at how ever many thousands of feet up on the airbus 319 I found myself expressing my thoughts to him in a poem.

 

There is no agenda

There is no pretence

We’re together because we want to be,

Together even when I’m tense.

———-

Like now

As we take off

Like now

As I try to hold it down.

———-

He sits here, peaceful, majestic

Not a worry, not a frown.

———-

I love my man to Munich and back

I love him because I can,

He makes it easy to be with him

 He makes me so very calm.

———-

Like now

As he strokes me,

Like now

Gently on my arm.

———-

So, thank you sweetie for being you,

Thank you for ‘us’ too.

You’ve made this trip just fly by

Through doing what you do.

———-

This last parts so very easy babe….

Nothing more to say 

As we alight this huge great craft

‘I love you more each day’

 

 

 

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Are fairies scared to fly?…well this one is 

Well I’m packing, I’m packing first for the boys as they’re not coming with us on this little weekend trip. I’m packing for them to go to nannys house. I’m also packing for ‘us’ which is the other half and me. Making sure the wedding present for his grown up daughter is brought, wrapped and looks pretty of course. I’ve been packing a full aldi shop away at nannys house today so the boys have everything available and don’t get any ‘I’m starving’ strops that they can’t contain….unlikely at the best place in the whole world, but better to be prepared than not!

I’ve yet to start packing my own case.

I wasn’t going to post anything new on my blog this week as I thought I’d prioritise the trip. I wanted to leave everything at home pretty much sorted. I’d also decided to catch up on replying to people who had been kind enough and taken the time to comment on my posts. Oh and I wanted to read some other people’s blogs to see what was going on in blogging world. Then, squeeze in the fact that I had to work full-time I was definitely not going to post this week.

Until…..

I found myself sat outside of the school gates waiting for the boys to come bounding through. It’s started to surface, it started to grow….

I was terrified…..

scaredy pants…

You see, I’m afraid of flying, well anxious, nervous, in the sweaty palms sort of way. I’d rather not fly at all, yet I do, probably 2 or three times a year. I don’t let it stop me doing anything but I’d just rather not thank you. I don’t normally tell anyone, I just pretend I’m OK.

I wrote here last week about what I need now, ‘Wings’. Fairy, bird, whatever, I need to get my wings and get to grips with not letting this become a problem.

So, I’m trying a different approach this time, I’m blogging about it and in my head I am putting those anxious little thoughts onto the computer and diluting the impact on me. This is my pre-flight therapy…..

Do you think it will work?

 

 

 

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