Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Jessie's Promise

I promise… never to lick your face….unless I’ve first been eating something unmentionable out in the garden…

I promise… never to nick your food…well, not unless it’s within reach of my nose when you place your plate on the table…
I promise… never to dig any holes in the garden…well unless you’re indoors making a cuppa while I’m out there on my own…
I promise…never to eat any of your plants…unless they happen to be newly-sprouting shoots that you’ve only just planted…sooo tasty!...
I promise…never to sneak upstairs and jump on your bed…unless you happen to be sitting in it enjoying a lazy cuppa in bed on a Sunday morning…
I promise…never to jump up onto your lap while you’re sitting on the sofa watching TV…unless I’ve just been outside digging up the garden, in which case I should have some nice messy paws and a muddy nose to rub into your nice clean lap!
I promise…never to pull your arm out of it’s socket as I’m walking on my lead…unless I see a pesky cat and I simply cannot resist the urge to chase it up the nearest garden fence…
And, last but not least, I promise…never to stop rushing to knock you off your feet in my excitement to see you when you come home after leaving me in charge of the house for a few hours….cos I know you love me just as much as I love you…!

Written by Bev.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Low Cost Summer Holiday Ideas -In and Around Norwich

It's that time of year again where we need to entertain our children for six whole weeks without breaking the bank. Enjoying quality time with our children needn't be expensive. After all, when you look back at your summers as children, do you remember every detail of a day out at the zoo/theme park or do you remember every detail of catching your first fish, playing under the sprinklers and bike rides with friends and family?

Holidays are fantastic and so are days out but prices are high and most days out to a theme park or zoo for our family can cost at least £100 for entry tickets alone. Summer holidays don't have to cost the earth. Here's a few ideas to get you going to have fun for free or very cheap:

A Day To The Beach
Very low cost if you plan your day well. Check journey times and pack up the essentials. A home made picnic, football, kite, net-for the rock pools, bucket and spade (or whatever you have to entertain the kiddies) if not kites, buckets and spades are relatively cheap and can be so much fun. Stuff it all in the boot and away you go. Remember to keep the essentials for next time, making it even cheaper. Oh, and don't forget a good old ice-cream.

Feeding The Ducks
There's plenty of rivers and ponds to choose from in Norwich. Good old fun for all ages.

Reading Challenge At The Library
As soon as the summer holidays begin, get down to your local library and get the children signed up for the reading challenge. It's a great way of filling in the time gaps or a rainy day activity. Plus children keep up (or start in some cases) with their reading for when they go back to school in September. You'll find the homework routine is easier to get back into.

GoGo Gorillas - The Gorilla Hunt In Norwich
While your at the library get a map of the Gorilla Hunt going on in Norwich. What is it? Break Charity, Wild in Art and Born Free have set up an interactive art event. With 120 Gorilla sculptures (67 baby Gorillas and 53 Large adult Gorillas) placed in and around the city of Norwich. Each one has a number you can tick off on your map with a letter. After you have found all the Gorillas and all the letters work out the mystery words. This is something that can be done over a few days.

Bike Ride
Exactly what it says, simple, healthy and children love them.

Cakes, muffins, cookies, fairy cakes. You name it - the children will love it. Most of us have the ingredients in our cupboards. If not they are very cheap.

Chalk Drawings
My children love to get their own patio square in the garden and draw a picture on it - Dick Van Dyke style from Marry Poppins. Draw hopscotch, snakes and ladders and four square. Little stone and away they go for ages.

Build An Obstacle Course In The Garden/House
So much fun and it's great that children have to use their imaginations too. I've had to take part in many obsticle courses my children have set up, from making mud pies to scootering around objects, climbing and tunnelling. Once they even made a zip-wire from tree to tree with a hose pipe & tow rope!

Either a good hours free entertainment or make a day of it. Take a picnic, meet up with friends.

A nice walk in the woods or neighbourhood. Let the children make a map, it doesn't have to be perfect. Or write some things down that your likely to see on your walk. Let the children tick them off on the way.

This is a free interactive treasure hunt you can get on a smart phone.

Tye Dye
You need an old t'shirt, elastic bands, stones/marbles dye. You can purchase dye from supermarkets quite cheap. Place the t'shirt flat, put a stone/marble inside the t'shirt and push up. From the top wrap an elastic band round the t'shirt and stone as tight as you can. Do this as many times as you like. In a bowl or sink of water pour the dye in and stir. Then place the t'shirt in and soak for at least 6 hours. Once the time is up, carefully remove the t'shirt and wring it out. Hang it out to dry. Once dry remove the elastic bands and stones/marbles. Enjoy your very own creation.

Most children enjoy painting and most mums hate the mess! Instead do it outside where it can easily be hosed down. A really good tip I got from the creator of Karma Family Life-Mrs Kerry Anne Head, to dry the paintings, hang them on the washing line with pegs. This resolves the issue of not having enough surface space.

Cheap Cinema
Hollywood cinema in Norwich offer showings for just 99p. Similarly the Vue and Odeon offer cheap am showings and off-peak rates.

Play Date
Not only is this a chance to see friends but to have a coffee morning and catch up on some sometimes much needed adult conversation.

Build A Den
Inside or out its always a winner. Cushions, blankets, furniture and pegs can all help to make a den inside on a rainy day. In the garden or a woods you can use fallen branches and sticks to make a den.

Wizards Maze
It costs under £15 entry for a family of 5 to go. Take a picnic and the children can enjoy going round the maze, go karts, the big bouncy cushion, tractor rides and other activities.

Lots of museums hold activity days for free or very low cost. Check out your local ones to see whats on.

Fruit Picking
This is always a winner. Not only will your children fill themselves up with fruit but it's very cheap to pick your own (PYO) White House Farm is one of our favourites in Norwich. They grow a variety of fruits. You can also turn your pickings into a bake day with berry concoctions and apple pies.

Theme Parks & Days Out
It's nice to get out and do something different sometimes but before you do be sure to look out for 2for1 vouchers on days out and money off. Good places to look are cereal boxes, Spree Book, Primary Times Magazine, Money Saving Expert website and use Tesco Clubcard Vouchers.

Written by Victoria.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

What I wore Wednesday

This week, I bought a new pair of combat trousers and they are WHITE!!!!

I have NEVER, ever owned a pair of white trousers. I was always brought up to believe that white made you look 'heavier' so I have steered clear of them all this time.

These are really comfortable, and light, for the warmer weather (which, fingers crossed, will

They were also only £10 from George at Asda, which is most definitely a bargain.

I just hope that everyone else likes them as much as I do, and don't think that they make me look even heavier then I already am.

I do feel very proud of myself for taking the plunge though, as there was an identical pair of these trousers in black hanging right next to these white ones!

White combat trousers - George at Asda
Black ribbed vest top - George at Asda
white thong sandles - Next
Blue charity bracelet - Black Dog Campaign in association with SANE - Save a Life, Send a Text.

Written by Kerry.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Raising confident kids

There’s something I want you to do, today. Right after you’ve read this blog or as soon as your kids come home from school – today!

Ask your children “What makes you YOU, why are you so loved, what’s special about you”?

This task isn’t to determine who brushed their teeth properly this morning, who behaves the most or answering to please you. This is to find out what your children think about themselves. You know why you love them and what makes them special. But what do they think? Can they even answer the question?

If they are stuck and can’t think help them. Do they think they are kind, caring, a good friend. Or do they think they are amazing! The answers your children give you may be a shock or may show that they aren’t as confident as you thought they were. They may even surprise you and say great things about themselves.

The task is important I think, as it will show what you project onto your children. Yes there are the celebrity footballers and singers for role models but who are their biggest and most influential role models? You, the parents and careers, the people around them the most

This is not something to make you feel good or bad but to show you what your children think of themselves. It can be deceiving that you think your child is the most confident of them all with lots of friends, captain of the team. Or you may worry about your child if they have trouble making friends or you think they daydream too much. There’s lots of examples but you may find that a child who is happy with themself, inside their mind but who doesn’t have many friends is actually better off with the perspective of them than a child who is maybe the captain of the team with so many friends but feels insecure inside.

However your children answer, there is no need to worry as it’s just about boosting their confidence. When you tell your child how much you love them throw in your amazing or you’re so clever, what a great friend you are.

Let’s all work together to raise happy children.

Written by Victoria.

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

What I wore Wednesday

This week, I played it 'safe' with black on black.
Very basic, very boring, but there it is.
It was a comfortable choice over a 'fashionable' one.

Black tunic - H&M
Faded black skinny jeans - Primark
Plain black ballet pumps - Clarks
Written by Kerry.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

What I wore Wednesday

This week, I decided to give some shorts a try!
Not short, shorts, you understand, I've not got the leg for it.

Apologies for the lighting, my little dude had fallen asleep on the bed, and I didn't want to wake him!

Black top pleated T-Shirt - New Look
Stone wash knee length denim shorts - Matalan
Black bow ballet pumps - George at Asda.

Written by Kerry.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

What I wore Wednesday

It's that time of the week again, and guess what?!
I've finally bitten the bullet and brought myself a full length mirror!
I know, I know, it was about time, but, as I'm really unhappy with my body, I have never owned one, since I  had my first child, and now, 4 children later, I look in this mirror and don't even recognise myself :(
Anyway, today, it was another warm(er!) one, so *drum roll, please* I decided to go with a DRESS!!!!!

It's a black and white, butterfly print maxi. It had a wrap around top half which covered my bigger bust well, and has a lovely V next line, which is very flattering.
The large print, helps to disguise my lumpy middle a little, and the longer length, means that I'm comfortable not showing too much off!

Butterfly print dress - George at Asda
No shoes today, as I just had a day barefoot in the garden with my little man :)

Written by Kerry.