Moozles turned eight last week. She's at an age where she's not little, but she's not yet big. Though if you ask her, she will say that she is a big girl. After all, she is in Year Three, and is learning her times tables. Finding a lovely gift for an eight-year old can be tough. She isn't into craft kits or dolls anymore. She loves reading, but I can't imagine she would have wanted all her gifts to be books (though she made a birthday wishlist and all 20 items were books). I wanted to give her a special gift, to show her that I thought of her as the big girl she is trying to be. I thought that a charm bracelet would be a wonderful present.
I spent ages on The Charm Works site trying to put together the perfect bracelet. First, I chose the sterling silver cable chain. Pretty yet timeless. Though there are loads of children's bracelets to choose from - all sterling silver and measuring six inches in length.
Then comes the most fun aspect of a charm bracelet - picking the charms. Starting with two or three charms works best. That way the bracelet doesn't look empty, and there is room to add more charms. I picked three for Moozles. First, I started with a phone booth charm to represent Moozles being born in the UK. Second, I chose a small heart pendant that I had engraved with Moozles' real name. And third, I picked an 'I Love To Read' charm. As I mentioned earlier, Moozles is an avid reader and this charm suits her perfectly.
The bracelet arrived in a beautifully wrapped box, so it was all ready for Moozles' eighth birthday last week. I remember receiving special 'big girl' jewellery when I was little. It made me feel so special and grown-up. And Moozles feels the same way about her charm bracelet. She has thanked me so many times for the bracelet and wears it with pride. But even though she is kind of a big girl, she is still my baby. Even if she wears proper jewellery and is learning her times tables.
We were sent the charm bracelet for the purpose of this review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own (and my daughter's).
On the 3rd May, my grandmother, Mere, will turn 101. You may remember that I spent nine days in Florida last year visiting my family for Mere's 100th birthday celebration. As an expat, I don't get to see my family very often, so it was amazing to get to be with them on such a special birthday. I am not sure when I will next see Mere. She is getting older, and is at an age where I can't help but worry that I'll never see her again. But I hope that I will see her next year.
Everyone calls my little French grandmother 'mere', meaning 'mother' in French. She is a kind, yet fiesty woman who drinks a glass of whiskey each evening. I wanted to share this photo of Mere and me from when I was about one. I have many treasured memories of our time together when I was growing up. Mere was my best friend, and is still one of my most favourite people in the world.
I don't know about you, but I find myself wearing the same thing time and time again. I wear a baggy but comfy dress, a cardigan and leggings. During the week, when I'm all about school runs and errands, this uniform works. I add trainers for most of the year, boots during the winter. But I'm 40 now, and getting tired of dressing like I did at 32. I want to look a bit more sophisticated and more polished, while still remaining relatively casual and comfortable. So, when the team at George at Asda challenged me to mix up my #styleYOUniform, I had to give it a try.
As a Stay-At-Home-Mum, I don't have loads of money to spend on my wardrobe, so I normally just buy clothes for nights out and weekend outings. I don't normally treat myself to weekday clothes, bar the occasional sweatshirt (I love sweatshirts). And recently, I haven't wanted to get any new clothes, as I have put on all the weight I lost last year (20 pounds, eek!). But with being 40, I am trying to be kinder to myself and not waste energy beating myself up over my weight gain.
This week has been lovely, weather-wise. Most days have been sunny and I have gotten away with wearing sweatshirts and cardigans and leaving my jacket at home. And since I recently treated myself to a new spring mac, I didn't even mind the rain on Friday. On Monday I met up with some bloggy friends (Em from Its Mostly Okay and Steph from Don't Buy Her Flowers) in Bushy Park. We had a walk around and then had tea and coffee at the Phesantry cafe. Yea for spring days and lovely friends! ...continue reading
Eight years ago, on this exact day, I became a mother. But the mother I was on that very first day is much different to who I am today. In the beginning, you go in 'all guns blazing', armed with your baby books and a heady sense of excitement mixed with equal measures of fear. But each day you learn, you grow. The fear sometimes lessen, and sometimes increases. You look at the books less, and you trust yourself more. So I thought I would share some of the things I have learned in the past eight years.
This is a momentous weekend in our household. My daughter (who will turn eight in less than one week) has gone away on her Brownie troupe's pack holiday this weekend. They are 'camping' in a lodge for two entire nights. Moozles has been so excited all week. And to be honest, I was a bit excited too. Husband and I rarely get the chance to have alone time with Dubz. But I was also a bit nervous. Apart from staying with her grandparents loads, and her one one-night sleepover a couple of weeks ago, Moozles has not been away from home during the night.
But I did not have time to spend on worrying as it has been a busy week. Then I spent Friday afternoon labeling and packing her things. Though, to be honest, the labeling only took a few minutes as I have one of those cool Stampastic pads (I even labeled her toothpaste and teddy bear - oh, the satisfaction). Anyway, Husband came home early so we could all drive Moozles to the campsite. She chose her bed and I got it ready. Then it was time to say goodbye.
It seems like all the cool people get one of those monthly beauty subscription boxes. Last month I decided that I want to be kinda cool. So I had a look at the various beauty/lifestyle boxes (basically researched all the boxes in a very uncool, mum-like fashion), and decided to go for My Little Box.
If you haven't heard of it, My Little Box is a French company so the items are automatically a bit more chic. You get a range of beauty items, some of which may be from their own beauty range, but there are also some fashion and/or lifestyle accessories and a little magazine. I do feel that the magazine is aimed for a a younger crowd, but I do like to know what 'da kids' are into these days.
Life is so hectic. I spend the weekdays rushing around after the kids. And even if I have free time, it is spent on errands and laundry (apart from the occasional break to watch The Real Housewives, heehee). The meals that I cook for my children are made quickly, and easily. Then on Saturdays we normally have a family outing and eat out. Sundays are my favourite day. It is the day we try not to make plans. We have a slow day, where we have fun at home. We play puzzles and Lego, Moozles does her homework, we watch an afternoon movie. And then, oh then, we eat.
One of my favourite British traditions is that of a Sunday Roast. Meat (usually lamb, but sometimes beef or pork in our house), potatoes (roasted or mashed), some kind of green vegetable and Yorkshire puddings (even though they are traditionally served with beef, my family loves them, especially my son who demands them with every roast).
We are in the Midlands for a few days this week for the Easter holidays. Regular readers will know that my in-laws live in Royal Leamington Spa, and we try and visit them often as it is a lovely area. Today we went to Dudley (which is about 50 minutes northwest of Leamington) to visit the Black Country Living Museum.
First of all, I had to ask why it was called the 'black country'. Apparently the area was given the name due to the smoke and soot from the ironworking foundries, but maybe also because of the 30-foot thick coal seam near the surface. The Black Country Living Museum (BCLM) is an outdoor and indoor museum set over 26 acres that shows us what life was like in a Black Country town in the 1800s.
The thought of travelling with young children, whether by car or train, can be nerve-wracking. But if you are prepared, it can go quite smoothly.