Thursday, 31 March 2011

A Mothers Day Treat

I've been friends with Cass from The Diary of a Frugal Family pretty much since I joined Twitter a couple of years ago. I then got to meet her at the John Lewis Christmas event last Summer and she's even more lovely in real life than on her blog and Twitter.

Last week she was lucky enough to receive an early Mothers Day bouquet from Interflora and then she got to nominate someone else to receive one and she chose me......see I told you that she was a Sweetie :-) In her blog post she said that she chose me because I always made her smile and that my post about Enjoying the Small Things made her think how lucky she is!! I may have shed some happy tears at her lovely words!!!

Today my gorgeous bouquet arrived form Interflora with a card wishing me a Happy Mothers Day and making me feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have such fabulous friends as well as a beautiful daughter:



Thanks to Interflora and Cass xx

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Conversations with an 8 year old.......part 2

I cannot even begin to tell you how much Chick makes me giggle either intentionally or not. Last week she came home from Brownies and we had the following conversation:

Chick:  Mum, mum, mum, the Brownies are going on camp to Switzerland, can I go?

Me:  Switzerland???? Erm.......I'm really not sure about you leaving the Country without me baby! When is it?

Chick: Please, please, please, Mum!

Me: When is it? How much does it cost?

Chick: It's in a few weeks and costs £40! Please say yes....

Me: Switzerland and it costs £40????????

Chick: Yes, please can I go?

Me: Go get me the letter and let me read it........If you are right then I'm sorry hunny but you are not going to Switzerland without me! (whilst heart my is sinking about letting her down)

Chick: Here you go.

Me:  *Reads letter*  

Me:   Hahahahahahahaha........Chick, the camp is in Swithland (about 10 miles from where we live!!!) Yes, baby you can go to Brownie camp!!!!

Chick: Bounces around living room......................until commanded to stop!!!!!!!!!!!

The moral of the story......make sure your 8 year old knows the facts or not and then giggle a lot ;-) Lol!!!

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Saturday, 26 March 2011

An Evening with Justin Beiber

My little Chick was lucky enough to get tickets to Justin Beiber for Christmas which she was excited about at the time and then kind of forgot about.....I guess 3 months is a very long time when you are only 8. Thursday dawned bright and sunny and my daughter suddenly discovered 3 months worth of pent up excitement and bounced off to school!!

We got home, she shimmied into her outfit, asked if she could put in make up (erm.....NO!!!) and off to the Big City we went. Outside the venue there were screaming girls everywhere some of them not actually wearing many clothes (sidenote: you can tell you are getting old when you spend all night thinking 'did your Mother let you leave the house looking like that'!!!) Then we saw this and Chick went into full on hysteria:


Inside we bought her a t-shirt and surprisingly the merchandise was very reasonable:


She has yet to actually take the t-shirt off!!! I suggested that we may wash it today but that was met with a look of total disdain ;-)

So first up were a girlie support act who's name I don't remember and then Willow Smith. Now some of you have probably never heard of her but she's the 10 year old daughter of Will & Jade Smith. I'm not a massive fan but Chick thinks she's kinda cool. Whilst she was performing all I could think was that she's awfully young to be living this lifestyle. There is something really disconcerting about watching a 10 year old working the crowd....  Anway this is her performing:


Bit blurry I know! Chick was also very excited that we made it onto Willow's Facebook page video!! I'm pretty sure that you only see us for less than a 10th of a second ;-)

Then it was time for the big man little boy himself!!! I have to say that I didn't have any expectations of the show being enjoyable but apart from the horrendous noise levels I was pleasantly surprised!!! I expected him to come across like a real brat but he didn't and he can actually sing and dance really well!!


I've never been to a concert quite like it!!! When I was younger I was always into rock music and you just don't get screaming girls at rock concerts 'cos it's not cool!!! Right from the start my eardrums felt like they were going to burst because the screaming was just so loud......my daughter being one of the main culprits. It was kind of like when you see the Beatles on TV and you can't hear anything other than screaming!!! I only just feel like I have my normal hearing back today!!!

Now, I'm sure it's probably that I'm getting old but as we left all I could think was what a strange life he must have. It's hardly surprising that he comes across as cocky and arrogant when he has 20,000 people screaming at his every word and wanting to be near him but not actually knowing him. Living in hotels in strange towns and cities all the time and not being at home. Not living a normal life, being able to hang out with his friends or go out in public without being followed or mobbed!! Would you want that for your 16 year old because I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't!!! 

The last thing that Chick said was that it was her dream come true so I guess all the screaming was worth it ;-)

Monday, 21 March 2011

Enjoying the Small Things

After watching Comic Relief on Friday, I decided to make the most of the things that we have this weekend. I vowed to not worry about being poor, to hang out with my girl, to enjoy the weather no matter what it was doing and to ignore the fact that I was feeling really ill. Do you know what was fabulous? As soon as I had made those decisions everything was lovely and almost perfect.

For the first time this year it was warm enough to take off the socks and boots and sit barefoot in the park whilst we ate our picnic and then play in the sand:


The sun actually shone and did I mention that it was warm??


When the sun went down and it got chilly, Chick added some interesting layers:


Ironically enough this outfit inspired her to put together a fashion magazine with stuff that she had laying around:


And then I was treated to her catwalk show:


To top the day off we went driving in our PJ's to try and get a good view of the Super Moon. It was completely awesome but I only managed to get this one great shot:


Yep......look closer....the little dot is the Super Moon....lol!!! My lovely friend Kerry took some AMAZING shots though!

Maybe not everyone's idea of a perfect day but it certainly was my kinda day!

Friday, 18 March 2011

Comic Relief - Red Nose Day

Normally I don't much get involved in Red Nose Day. I always donate money without fail and I generally watch the night on TV and I might even buy a red nose and look like a goofball for a few minutes at work but this year Chick is really into it and therefore by osmosis so am I!!!

For those of you who don't know what red nose day is......it's basically a charity event that started back in the late 80's and aims to raise as much money as possible for charities abroad and in the UK. It happens every two years and back in 2009 they managed to raise around £80 million!!! That's an immense effort.

So far this year various celebrities to raise money have walked a high wire across Battersea Power Station, trekked through the Kenyan desert for 100 kms, lived in the slums in Kenya with the locals and of course the awesome effort by Chris Moyles & Comedy Dave who completed over 50 hours of live radio which has raised £2.4 million so far!!!!

Now obviously we don't have millions to donate but we have donated money through school, after school club and through buying red nose merchandise from Sainsburys. Tonight we are having a 'red' party so I thought that I'd share a few pictures with you:

If you would like to donate then please visit www.comicrelief.com for more details!!

Friday, 11 March 2011

Dear So & So


Woooo Hooo!!!! I made it to Friday but so that I can enjoy the weekend I have a few things I need to get off my chest...................................


Dear Chick’s Dad

You are an utter Muppet. To not want to come to Parents evening is bad enough but to not care enough to call or e-mail to see what the Teacher said makes me spit feathers. Watch as your access diminishes until you give a fuck!

Love
Your utterly pissed off Ex

P.s. Flirting with me enrages me all the more.....surprised you haven’t learnt that yet!

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Dear Mother of the Girl who has been bullying Chick

I was so pleased to arrive at Parents Evening this evening and discover that you have requested that your daughter not be with mine next year!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

 I’m not sure if you are aware of the facts but my daughter comes home crying at least once a week because of yours. I’m stating right here and now that if my girl gets moved out of the class that she loves because of you there will be a fight in the playground! Childish? Yes, very!!! But I mean every word and you know that I’ll kick your ass every day of the week.

Love
Chick’s Mum

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Dear Mum

I promise that this will be the last year that I forget about your birthday because I’m trying to ignore the pain about it being Dad’s at the same time. I love you to the moon and back.

Em x

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Dear Nick Clegg

Not content enough with selling out my vote and joining the Conservatives now you are responsible for decimating my pension as well. I don't know how you sleep at night....oh wait a minute.....I guess being a millionaire kinda helps!!!!

Yours
Never voting for your party again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Dear One up North

This says exactly what I feel about you:


And now I’m done.

No love left at all
Me

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Dear Chick

I’m so very proud of the progress you have made at school this year. In fact I’m proud of the girl you are becoming in general. A little less attitude would be delightful though :-)

Lots of Love
Mama xxx

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Dear Lovely Readers

Fancy writing your own Dear So & So? Then link up with Kat over at 3 Bedroom Bungalow!

Thanks for reading

Love
Adventures of an English Mum

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Join the Co-operative Revolution

I’m pretty sure that most of you have heard of the Co-op but did you know that it’s more than just a shop?  The Co-operative Group now has six million members and 5,000 outlets across its family of businesses including food, financial services, travel and pharmacy.  They are running a new advertising campaign to talk about the first successful Co-operative that was set up by the Rochdale Pioneers way back in 1844 and the ‘revolution’ is still going strong.
The campaign also highlights the Co-op’s ethical credentials and shows some of the many co-operative schemes across a huge range of different interests. For instance a football club putting the heart back into the community by offering affordable football matches and running Sports Coaching sessions for refugees and children leaving care. At the start of this year with help from the Co-op’s Enterprise Hub they were able to access training and support and to date have sold one million £1 shares! How’s that for a brilliant co-operative idea??


How about the Cumbrian villagers powering their Village with wind power? It’s the UK’s first community owned wind farm and was set up in 1996. It has received several grants from the Co-operative Enterprise Hub and now generates around 10,000MWh of electricity each year which is enough to power about 30,000 homes!! Another brilliant idea that benefits not only the environment but the local community too.


It’s easy to get involved with some great projects in your area too. Why not join the revolution and get involved? You can nominate your own revolution to win £5,000 under any of the following categories:

Combating Climate Change 

Benefiting the Community

Tackling Global 

Poverty Inspiring Young People 

I would love to hear about the revolutions going on in your Area.  Alternatively you could vote for this fab project that is happening in my Area :-)





Thursday, 3 March 2011

The Cat in the Hat!

It's 8.30pm on a Wednesday night and your daughter says to you 'Mum, it's World Book Day tomorrow and I have to go to school dressed as a character from a book'!! Do you:

a) Say 'Unlucky, you should have told me before'?

b) Think maybe option A is a bit harsh and offer to come up with something whilst she's asleep?

c) Laugh and say 'No, you cannot be the Cat in the Hat'!!!!?

d) Toss and turn all night wondering what the bloody hell you have in the house that you can whip up into a character from a book?

e) Get up an hour early to try and put an outfit together?

f) All of the above!!!!

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Dettol Misson for Health

I received an e-mail a few weeks ago from a Lady called Claire inviting me to part of a group of Bloggers that were invited to an event for Dettol, my first thought was 'flipping heck, she must know that I'm completely undomesticated and fear for my child'!!! My second thought was 'I wonder what they'll think of my excuse that germs are good for kids and we are all too clean these days'!!! I was really unsure if I wanted to be part of the mission or not but always up for a day out and a good gossip with my fellow bloggers I decided to say yes!!

Off we went on aforementioned trip to London still not convinced that I would be talked around to this cleanliness lark. We were met at a beautiful house and offered pastries, tea and cakes. Chick was let loose with all the toys and I was free to gossip with my lovelies. Once everyone was there we had talks from Dr. Dawn Harper from Channel 4's Embarrasing Bodies, Prima Baby midwife Nikki Khan and health and safety expert Dr. Lisa Akerley.  We talked about cleanliness and how it's mainly common sense and then Jen from Mum at the Madhouse asked the question 'Do we want our kids to be too clean'? The message.....absolutely not! You can never prevent your kids from catching all germs but if you can give them basic skills such as hand washing then you are taking them a long way.

This video below featuring Dr Lisa explains a little bit more:



The basic rules then:

     · Regularly disinfect commonly touched surfaces as some harmful germs can survive on surfaces for longer periods, which can then be transferred to other surfaces in sufficient numbers, representing a risk to catch them and develop an infection

· Use a surface cleanser with proven efficacy to kill 99.9% of harmful germs including E.coli, Salmonella, MRSA and the flu virus 

· Practice good hand hygiene; wash hands regularly with an antibacterial hand wash and dry thoroughly. 

· If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer. There are many gel and foam varieties available for use while out and about 

· Practice good cough and sneezing etiquette - always cover your nose and mouth with a tissue and dispose of immediately 

· Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes with your hands. This will reduce your chances of getting infected

A really cool thing that Lisa did with us on the day was to ask us in the kitchen where we thought the hotspots were. She had already sprayed a chemical on some areas and we could look around with our UV torches and see the highlighted spots:


Another thing that she did was to ask us where we thought would be high germ areas and then to swab them. With a special chemical and a machine she could tell us exactly how germ riddled the areas were! If she were inspecting a kitchen or restaurant she would expect the reading for them to pass to be around 4! First of all we swabbed the kettle handle which had a reading of about 992. Then the fridge door which had a reading of around 135. Lisa then asked for ideas and Chick suggested the high chair.....it had a massively high reading of 9,000 and something!!! 


So, even though it all seems like common sense, are you cleaning the most important areas? As Lisa says in her video most of us spend the little cleaning time we have concentrating on the toilet. Well actually that's probably least important as we only put our bums there!!!

As part of the Mission for Health, Dettol are donating 20p to Save the Children for every 'like' on their Facebook page and are hoping to raise £20,000. After spending the day with Save the Children on Saturday could I please ask you to like the page and raise as much money as possible? If your click helps to save one child then the Mission for Health has to be a good thing and a worthy cause?