Times Are A-Changing. Update!

I though I would do a quick update after my Times Are A-Changing post and let you know how we are all adjusting to our new routine...

What I Thought:
I had a few fears in my last post, that Jenson wouldn't settle and would cry when I left him.

Reality: 




Hes been fine! His first day was like he had always been there! No tears, no fuss, he was relaxed, chilled out and as cool as a cucumber! It totally suprised me, like knocked me for six suprised me! This is the boy who refuses to leave the house with anyone unless me or his Daddy are going...the boy who will scream if we leave him with a babysitter either at home or at their house! He's taken to it like a duck to water. And he loves going to!

What I Thought:
Evie would withdraw and be lost without Jenson.

Reality:


Evie is fine! For the first few days she wouldnt talk to be for at least 20 minutes after we had left him and I was a bit worried. But actually she is enjoying Mummy time (Elsie goes down for a nap)  where we can bake and play dollies and watch bloody Peppa Pig! Its actually become my favourite part of the day, walking back from school me and my 2 youngest. Its the most relaxed part of the day, peaceful, relaxed and happy. 

What I Thought:
Will Elsie be OK without her usual nap?

Reality:
NO! NO and NO! again. She wasn't OK without her nap, she used to sleep from 10.30-1.30 and would go bed at 7.00pm sleep until 2/3 o clock have a bottle go bac down and sleep until 6.30/7.00am. In our new routine she was sleeping 10.30-11.30 I was having to wake her up she was going bed at 7 absolubtly shattered and waking every 2 hours through the night! This had to change! For my own sanity as well as her health, she was clearly not egtting enough sleep!

Now she gets up at around 6.30, breakfast/playtime. Then sleeps 9.30 until 11.30, gets up, school run, home, playtime, dinner, sleeps 1.30-2.30 gets up, school run, playtime, tea, bath, then bed at 7ish. waking at around 2ish for her bottle. 

So thank god that got sorted!

What I Thought:
We wont ever get any activities done.

Reality:
We get more done! Because I am adamant to still get to do fun with Jenson so we get an activity in most mornings and then in the afternoon when Elsie is sleeping me and Evie get to do something fun together too. Perfect!


So as you can see its actually made for a happier home. The kids behaviour (in general) has been loads better. School is just what Jenson needed, and some Mummy time is what Evie needed. And me? I just needed the kids to behave and calm down, and because they are getting what they need I'm more relaxed too!*

*I'm not stating my kids are perfect, nor am I living in a stress free house BUT its more than happier than it was before and that's good enough for me!

Major Chef-y Mum Fail!

I would call myself a good cook, I like to prepare meals, and snacks, from fresh for my monsters so when I saw these scrummy apple chips I didn't think anything of it...


Was a simple recipe thinly slice your apple's coat in a cinnamon sugar bake in the oven for 2 hours...yeah I can do that, I mean even on the most stressed days I should be able to complete that! I mean anyone could do that...even Dean (and he cant not cook a thing!) 

So I set to work this afternoon, settled Elsie and Evie down with their lunch and got slicing...



and mixing cinnamon sugar...



and coating apples and then I quickly needed Google...I have a gas oven I'm not a human convertor so occasionally (ok all the time) I need to check a conversion chart...225c---Gas 7-8. Put them in the oven and sit down to eat my lunch.

Not long after the most amazing smell comes wafting into the Kitchen...


An then 5 minutes later it happens...I smell burning.

Now thinking that maybe I forgot to peel some paper of the new baking tray and that has maybe burnt I open the door to the dining room/kitchen to find smoke...smoke filled kitchen...smoke filled dining room...smoke filled bathroom. Panicing I whack open the back door and open the oven...this is what I found...



So as you can imagine I'm a bit, erm confused so headed back to the recipe to see what the hell I had done wrong...ohh it said 225F, which for any one who cant convert, is gas 1-2. Talk about a FAIL! 

A fail of the major kind!! So ermm it will be the corner shop after school? For a milky way yeah? Better Luck tomorrow!

Fun Food Friday Gone Wrong!!!
Eats Amazing Fun Food Friday

Toddler Approved. Yoghurt Bark.

The beauty of this is its versatility...


What you need:
Large Tub Fat Free Natural Yoghurt
Choice of Toppings...we used dried apple pieces, mini fudge pieces, strawberry fruit drops and chocolate chips.

There are some great options I have seen...how about swap the youghurt for melted white chocolate topped with freeze dried strawberry and pistachio's (yum, I;m going to make this one for myself soon keep a look out!) or how about a fruit and nut youghurt bark? 

First up cover your baking tray with some greaseproof paper...then pour the yoghurt onto the paper and spread it round (it needs to be quite thick)...


Next sprinkle on your toppings and pop in the freezer over night. 


Break up and store in a freezer in a suitable tub. 






#ToddlerApprovedTuesdays


Signs I'm Turning Into My Mum!

My sisters have long long LONG told me I am our Mum, I've always said don't be ridiculous, not because I'm ashamed but because she has the funniest ridiculous habits, like singing at the top of a whispered voice which actually is worse than a high pitch singing sesh! But then last night reality hit...


So here are the 5 signs I'm turning into my beloved Mummy...I am getting OLD (Sorry Mum) I understand that the most of you have no idea who my mum is but please bear with me you might find you relate too:

1) I have 'my chair'.

Well I have my seat on our sofa...and I make anyone sat in it move by stating (just like Mum) 'out my seat NOW!'

2) I utter THOSE words I promised myself I would never say...

'Im not a piece of shit on the bottom of your shoe'
'your grounded' (to actually never ground at all)

3) I love 'good value' and hate waste!

                        
Now when my dad used to work away, money used to be tight, he would get paid cash and being in the Isle of Wight he couldnt just get it to us so easily so Mum would budget...On one occasion (yep Mum I'm gonna tell THAT story!) she bought a million and one sausages from Iceland because they were cheap...therefor for the next week we ate nothing but sausages! Sausages Mum though she was serving in 'imaginative ways' but nope sausage with spaghetti (and a dollop of tommy ketchup) does not make for Spaghetti and meatballs poor mother...it makes for sausages AGAIN..for the millionth time..in a week! Anyway my point is I hear from Dean all the time 'mushrooms again?', peppers AGAIN?  because I will buy the biggest pack possible for its 'better value' and then to avoid watse will bulk just about every meal I can get away with, with said food!

4) I do foot dancing...

That is all...I did a foot dance (you know tapping your foot, wiggling your toes) to Lionel Ritchie last night watching Sunday night at the palladium! OH.THE.SHAME!

5) I make lists...neat lists! 

I have started making lists...list for everything...I start a shopping list BUT the minute it starts looking scruffy I rip it up and start again! My Mum used to have a book for Xmas. Gift ideas written in blue, underlined in red when she had bought it and crossed out with a neat line, in black when it was wrapped...I used to take the piss...now? Now this idea rocks...this is awesome!

And so..this is where the list ends...or actually should end BUT I have still got a few things I need to add. Which must only mean one thing...I am now my Mum!! So here's a few more for you...


6) I am a bit embarrassing, but don't realise it until its too late!

This happened on Saturday, whilst I muttered the words 'Your not to old for a kiss just because your with your friends,  sorry Ellie I will never ever ever do this again! Actually I probs will, seeing as at 30 years of age my Mum still manages to embarass me!

7) I call the kids stupid names in public.

Mum used to call us 'Ninnys' it was her way of telling us of in public, in front of people...you know when you have that extra bit of patience. I have found my self saying 'stop acting a wally...' when the kids are been shits...when really at home it would be 'stop been a bloody little shit or your going to your bed!!'

8) The programmes I enjoy are changing!

I used to be able to spend all day watching programmes like Cribs, Super Sweet 16, Towie (sorry still llove that one!) you get the idea....now, well now my fave programmes include period dramas like Downton, TV dramas like CSI, chat shows like Loose Women, and morning TV like This Morning (well that is when I get a chance to watch my TV and not Cbeebies, Nickelodeon or the hubs shit TV!) 

9) My favourite drink is coffee.

Long gone are the days of cocktails, wine, vodka and more cocktails oh no for now, I would rather have a cup of coffee in my hand! Coffee is even my drink of choice in Starbucks/Costa etc...not a luxury Hot Chocolate with all the trimmings!

And finally...

10) I have told Ellie she is going to school....its not a fashion show.

Ohhhhh how I promised PROMISED (actually pinky promised myself) that I would never ever ever speak these words to my kids..because lets face it...school is a fashion show, you look like shit those awful playground bullies are gonna rip you to shreds....but tough your still not wearing heeled shoes, short skirts OR makeup to school...so erm just go sort yourself out..NOW!

Throwback Thursday

Alternative Uses for Baby Items!

I asked my followers on Twitter and Instagram for their top items that become something else once babies have finished with them. Here are the responses I got:


V-Pillows.

Great for breast feeding....Also great for propping up a tired Mum and also makes a great sitting support when babe just starts sitting (who needs a Bumbo!)

Top and Tail Bowl.

Does anyone actually use these things? I mean for their intended use? Various uses were messaged to me including a bowl for playdough to be presented as an Invitation to play. Another Mum uses it as storage for her days nappys and wipes. Another uses it in her baking cupboard to keep all her sprinkles tubs and spices together (genius!!).

Baby Bath.

I'm finding it impossible to find a mum who actually used hers! Various uses from storing toys to becoming a laundry basket. Oh and I had sand tray/water tray emailed to me aswell!

Baby Wipes.

They clean EVERYTHING. END. OFF
And then theres this video I found....Mind blimmin BLOWN!!!


Wipe Clean Mess Mat.

Doubles as a white board marker art mat, long after baby has left the highchair.

Muslin Cloths.

Seems these are as useful as baby wipes, if you want to clean/dry/dust just grab a muslin!

Empty Baby Bath/Shampoo bottles.

(not really an alternative but a great re-use/recycle) especially as in the last 2 weeks Evie has injured her self 3/4/5 times trying to wash her hands after a wee!! So a special one for toddlers cant reach taps?




Other things I have come across during my interweb browsing research:
  1. Baby food (jarred) as muffin flavouring (yuk!)
  2. Nappy's (unused) as hanging basket liners.
  3. Baby wipe tubs for toddler posting activities.
  4. Formula scoops for coffee.
  5. Nipple creams for sore lips and dry hands, and baby rash.
  6. Talc to remove sand from your body, also makes a good dry shampoo (don't go crazy though!)
  7. Moses baskets, remove the covers and hood and use as toy baskets/laundry baskets.
Do you have any other top tips? What would be the thing you don't throw away because you still use it now (even if its not for the original use!) Oh and whats the thing you have had for years and still use now?

Mums' Days

20minute Creamy Veg Spaghetti (With Just 1 Pot!!)

You know when you have been busy all day and you really cant be bothered to cook anything (or wash any pots later on in the evening?) this is perfect for those situations! less than 5 minutes to prep...less than 15 minutes to cook and less than 5 minutes to wash up AND if your lucky the hubs or tween might offer to wash for you seeing as there is only 1 pan!


What you need (this served 3 adult portions, 2 toddler portions and a baby portion with loads spare!)

1 pack spaghetti 
2 courgette's (sliced and cut into quarters)
1 cup of peas
2 cloves garlic (sliced thinly)
1 good sprinkle of dried herbs
4 1/2 cups of cold water
2 handfuls of grated Cheese
1 small tub double cream


Pop your spaghetti, courgette's, peas, garlic, herbs and water in a large pan.
Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer until the pasta is cooked and the water has reduced (aroound 8-10 minutes)
Stir in the cheese and cream.
Serve!

Enjoy!



Tasty Tuesdays on HonestMum.com


Berry Clever.

Now you all know how much I love a list! (See my 5 Ideas for... section and how about my popular 15 Things Every... features) so imagine my delight when I learnt of BerryClever...




BerryClever is a brand new website for parents (they also have a zone for pet owners too!) by parents, like you and me, and guess what? You can join in too!  

You know how when, your beauty started doing that brand new super exciting thing? And you asked your Mummy friends what you should do? What you should buy? What was the best product for this and that? I know you did that...am I right? BerryClever IS THIS! Yes you could ask your friends but isn't the opinion of many Mums better than 1? 

Its so easy you can just browse through their catalogue of products and see what other parents are loving! You join in too by clicking LOVE or MEH. You can also let people know if you have it or want it. If you have it you can leave a short review. Literally just a few lines, great for the readers to I think, because who always wants to read a super long reviews?

And my fave part...you can make lists! You name your own lists and you add what you want to your lists. You might choose to list baby essentials or you maybe want to make a Christmas list for your little ones! Its not just for new parents its for all parents, with books toys etc and you could always submit a product if you cant find your favourite product and you want to tell everyone about it.

For an opinionated list loving Mummy like me this really is a great website. Quick reviews, lists ahhhh what more could I want!

Anyway I'm off now to start our kids Christmas List and then I'm going to invite my family and friends so they can see said Christmas List and never have to ask 'what can we get them?'. Why don't you come and join to? You can join HERE!

DISCLAIMER: This is a Sponsored Post.

The Week That Was...20th-26th September 2014.

I cant believe another week is over! I have added a few extra's to my weekly list, you will find them under the *NEW* sections (obvs!)


Homelife.

You may know that the (last) weekend was screen free for me! It was a shitty stressful weekend and I felt lost without Twitter to rant and rage through! BUT I made it.....High 5 to me!!!

We didnt really do much to be honest, we made a start on Betty's cupboard doors (by we I mean Dean!) and I managed to get the monsters play house makeover (almost) finished I love the end result!

The week began with a Millie (my niece) play date day! I adore having my gorgeous niece for the day, Evie loves having her around they are little BFF's! Other than that its been a real quiet week, not really much to report! 

All worries I had about a routine being impossible once Jenson started pre-school have been brushed away, in fact we have a better routine now than we did before! Activities with my beauties have started again and so there behavior has improved (wooooo!!!) here are a few of our crafty makes:



We also enjoyed some baking, its nice to do something with the monsters that we all enjoy and baking is my safe-house, my thing of relaxation! Rarely an argument between us when we have the flour and eggs out!! Here's what we made this week:



*NEW* My fave photo's this week.


I'm in love with Jensons (first) drawing of a person, its just so cute and I love how I have captured it in this pic! 
Next...as you can see I needed have worried about Jenson at school it certainly gets the thumbs up from him! 
This Pic of Evie is just ADORABLE! Funny how happy a bit of bread crust can make them!!!
And lastly, nope its not  apic of my chins (After my little break Slimming World starts again for me on Monday!) but of that gorgeous chubby hand wrapped around my neck for a cuddle...moments like that is what makes been a Mummy so perfect!

*NEW* What I'm looking forward to.

After a quiet weekend last week, this weekend we have promised the monsters a day out, nothing major as we have so much to save up for right now, but we are planning to head over to one of the local country parks to enjoy the start of Autumn, I even thought about taking a 'hot food' picnic! Yum! And we will also be doing a little more with Betty. I'll update you on this early next week.

Planning on popping out once a week, to my sisters house (I think wine should be included, shes not keen on wine...I'm sure we can change her mind though!) hopefully with my other sister too. I think we all need to connect more, we are such a close family and sometimes I feel like we don't see each other enough. 

Bloglife.

My most popular post this week was Ellie's Pizza Muffins Vlog. She really enjoys making her videos and is chuffed when she hears how many people have read it (she always says is it more than 10, that will make me happy! Indeed Ells its more than 10!) 

And I wrote this letter to my monsters after a particularly stressy morning!

I am about to start working with a great new website, look out for a blog post soon, ill let you know all about them! 

A big thanks to one of my favourite blogging Mummy's Leandra, how she fits in work AND blogging AND fun activities with her boy, as well as the crafts she enjoys wooshh shes Wonder Woman I'm sure! Any way she has featured me in her #booboxocean month you can see the post HERE! And whilst I remember you should pop by and follow her she has some amazing things coming up, including a kids sticker swap

Ohh and another yey for me...I moved up in the Tots100 chart again yey! Still having no luck with Mums Net Bloggers Network though...it just doesn't work and doesnt update as I update my blog! I must get back in touch this week!

*NEW* Coming Soon.

I promised these a few weeks back on Instagram...ooooppsie! Sorry!


*Fave Posts from the week.

Sharon's Annoyance On Social Media really made me laugh (and give myself a smack on the back of my hand) a fair few of my bug bears there too!
I enjoyed Tots100 post on Making Blogging Friends. I read it a couple of times and have absorbed every word!  There are so many bloggers out there who inspire me, a few who I do talk to on occasion...some I'm too erm 'star-struck' to chat with...I mean I'm a little starry eyed that they follow me back let alone the fact that they (might) tweet back! 

Inspiration.

I just mentioned it above...I am going to make it my aim this week to actively say HI to some fave bloggers! 

I am also going to pop over to my About Me page and make sure it is in fact Brilliant by following Jocelyn's, at The Reading Residence, Blogging Tips. 

Ohh I'm completely over the top excited for Halloween this year, as I am every year, so think I might start prepping for that! Such a fun time of year. If you enjoy Halloween too pop over to Pinterest and follow our Halloween Board!

Mums' Days

''STOP TELLING ME OFF!'' Well I would but...

Oh how many times have I heard this, so to my darling children, today when all morning all I have done is nag, nag some more and moan, I write you this...


To my 4 beautiful darling children...

I tell you off because I enjoy it...I love to see you sad, to make you cry and to see your bottom lip do that wobble whilst I tell you off. 

There that IS what you wanted to hear isn't it? 

So now I have told you what you want to hear now I will tell you the truth the real reasons...

I tell you off simply because what you are doing is wrong/naughty/not acceptable!

I tell you off for not changing your underwear because its trampy to wear the same pair for half the week, and because we have made hints for you to do it for the last few days each hint going unheard ignored.

So yes, this morning (day 4) I did shout at you because every single bloody day we have the same conversation. Its a simple thing to do. Yet this morning you chose to put a clean pair in the wash basket instead of just changing them! And then you choose to argue about it, just 10 minutes ago you were wandering around in just your pants waiting for the bathroom...I KNOW you had purple pants on...so don't insult my intelligence by telling me you have changed your pants whilst you put a red pair in the wash! I am not colour blind nor am I stupid. You are getting older now, things are going to erm start changing (body wise) you need to change you are going to make yourself poorly! An infection or something...

And you then struggle to understand why your getting told off? Why I am nagging? Why Dean is moaning (again!)? 

Jenson this morning you got told off for your constant whining because at 8.20 your wanting dinner even though you just had breakfast, or maybe its over that toy phone you know the one that there is 2 of yet you have to have the one that Evie has! Oh and the throwing yourself on the floor. YOU ARE GOING TO BLOODY HURT YOURSELF! I don't ask you to do it for the fun of it...remember last week when you did it and about knocked Elsie out because you head butted the poor girl in your attempt to hit the floor? So go ahead if you want to end up in hospital or put your sister in hospital then fine carry bloody on....

Evie...Evie...Evie...you this morning was told of for climbing AGAIN! Because the hundreth time in 1 hour is plenty of times and at 2 and a half you understand the words STOP CLIMBING! Remember when you ended up in A&E last week because you fell from the bath and your teeth went through your gums? Or how about when we had to go A&E at the weekend because you fell from the toilet? STOP BLOODY CLIMBING....JUST BLOODY STOP! Please! Your going to break an arm or a leg, or have to have stitches for a split eye or something!

Elsie Bear...you are just a 11 month old baby so things cant be helped, your just incuisitive BUT im totally fed up of saying NO ELSIE! So please don't copy your sister I hate climbing...I dont care for how far you can climb up the sofa you will fall! Your obsession with the batteries from the (broken backed) remote...its getting boring! Forget it after all its just a battery..play with your toys!

So In Short...

I tell you off, I nag and I moan because I don't want you to hurt yourself, or your brother/sisters. I don't want for you to end up in hospital. I don't want you to be in any pain. I want you to become independent small adults/bigger children whom can at least attempt to look after themselves and able to complete simple tasks in order to live a healthy life. I want you to be happy and healthy, that is all. 

So no I shan't stop nagging nor will the moaning stop well unless you stop doing the things I nag/moan about! Then we can all live in peace and harmony...ahhh wouldnt that be bliss!

But please remember even though I nag and moan and sometimes shout 

I LOVE YOU...

I LOVE YOU MORE THAN LIFE ITSELF!




#wickedwednesdays #10

Another throwback from Jenson this week, hes fast becoming the King of #wickedwednesdays!






DON'T PANIC! He wasn't poorly, he hadn't been mauled and scratched to death no no no...for this is Jenson remember...King of touching stuff he shouldnt (See the Vaseline Saga!)

This time he had gotten hold of my lipstick...My favourite lipstick at that! But f course it wasnt him oh no no no...because guess who did it? Evie, yep Evie the 3 month old, who had apparently eaten it! 

My poor lipstick!

#Wickedwednesdays

brummymummyof2

Toilet Roll Craft. Fish Puppets.

If your like me you will have a million and one toilet roll tubes just sat waiting for something to be done with them! Here's a super quick craft all ages can get involved with and it gets rid of those pesky tubes too.

(PS this craft wont make those toilet rolls spontaneously combust it just turns them into something else but well you know!)

What you need: 

Toilet Roll Tubes (1 for each fish)
Glue
Sparkles/Sequins
Pens
Tissue Paper
(any thing else you can think of to decorate!)

First up you need to make your fish....



Once you have made your fish its time to decorate...

Cutting and sticking.

Felt Pens (how cute is the little smiley face that Jenson did!!!)

Shiny sequins!

The finished product:

The monsters loved the Under The Sea Theme, and I must apologise that I haven't blogged more of our activities. But be sure to head over to Leandra's blog (Larabee) and check out our Rainbow Fish Craft.

Mamavsteacher

Project: Playhouse Makeover!

Betty isn't the only one getting a makeover....the monsters playhouse was in need of a little something and as we are planning a house move in the next year we have decided to hold off with the bedroom decorating! 

So hmmmm how to use the blackboard paint that Rustoleum kindly send us? And the alphabet frieze sent from Chubby Pineapple?? I wanted them put to great use....so why not spruce up the boring old playhouse turned dumping ground for plastic ball pool balls and broken outdoor toys and take it back to what it's makers intended...somewhere for fun!!! 

An outdoor creative station is the plan and soon I will add in a table with paper roll and also an art gallery for the kids to hang up there art (because who wants paper blowing around their garden right?) so here we have our new improved creative den 90% ready but I couldn't wait to show you it! ( I'll update you as soon as the rest is done! 

Painting.


The lovely people at Rustoleum sent us the blackboard paint for entering a Pinterest competition ran by the lovely Hannah at Mums Days. 



 

The paint was really easy to use and didn't really have a strong smell so I allowed my sensible (at times!!!) Jenson to help out as he was busting to help me! 



After: Still a few of the edges to go, and the floor now needs a spruce up thanks to Jenson and his splatting! I used just 1 coat with the roller, where Jenson had painted with the brush needed 2 but I think that's down to Jenson not the paint (or brush!!) 

You can buy Rustoleum blackboard paint from most DIY stores and you can get it in black, blue, pink or red!! Check out the website HERE!!



Decorations.


As we painted all 3 walls I felt it a good idea to do something different on each side, so 1 side became our Alphabet wall. Chubby Pineapples alphabet frieze has really made it look great. What do you think?



The pictures are simple, recognisable and bright....you can choose from 2 colours blue or pink. We chose pink (obvs...you're not blind!) the pink is a subtle pale pink. The frieze comes in 1 piece, 3 metres long, I cut it to make it fit.




The letters are as they learn at school....


Jenson couldn't resist having a little practice scribble!


You can buy the alphabet frieze from Chubby Pineapple HERE!  


I've made a family portrait wall with frames for them to fill in with portraits.





 and included a little piece of name art using foam stickers! 


Other little details:

Star and flower fairy lights.


Chairs (for now!)


And this post wouldn't be complete without a few pics of my gorgeous monsters enjoying their new playhouse!



(oops as usual Elsie bear doesnt sit still, much to much stuff to touch and eat oopps I mean play with!



In the next few weeks we will finish of the floor I'm not sure what I want to do with it yet and also I want a small shelf around the top of the back wall and above the window to keep a couple of books, also I'll add some big cushions so it can become a little reading nook for them!

Disclaimer: We were sent both products for free to review. All thoughts, opinions and photos are my own.

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