Saturday, 9 October 2010

She makes me laugh so much

It's turning into a roller coaster of a term at work - every day brings new news and challenges and as a school, we are all facing changes. I don't think I've worked this hard since my NQT year!

Anyway - yesterday morning, in the car, Cara was asking about hearing dogs. So we were talking about what they do, who they help, how they help etc. End of conversation. Then, yesterday afternoon, we were in the car again. She said something and I misheard her "you should get a hearing dog" she told me. She just makes me laugh so much.

Monday, 13 September 2010

It was worth going to the gym for

Earlier on, Cara asked me what she should draw. I said to her, "why don't you draw a beautiful house." I then went to step class, leaving her with the husband. I've just this minute got back to a dark and silent house. I crept upstairs and they are snuggled up together, sound asleep. This was on my pillow:

Not only is it an astonishingly beautiful house, but just there, in the middle and to the left a bit is my name 'mummy' (written backwards!). I think my heart may have melted a little bit when I saw it. It was well worth going to the gym for.

Friday, 10 September 2010


Cara started 'big' school a week and a bit ago. She has been doing mornings only this week. Next week she stays for lunch and then the following week, she will be full time. Even in just one week, she already seems so much more grown up.

I asked her today if she is enjoying school. "'s really quite fun actually" she replied.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

New love!

Cara has a new love - the paddling pool at the Strand. We've now been every weekend for the past three - today being no different! The only thing different today was the temperature of the water though - one quick feel and she soon changed her mind, settling for the park instead!

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Cousins together

Cara's cousins came to play today and we had a lovely day. Sometimes, if they spend too long together, they get to the point where they start to bicker, so I made sure we got out and about, not giving them much time to bicker.

We started off with a walk to the local library. Then we called in Tesco to get something for lunch. When we got home, they had lunch. Then they played in the garden for a while, then we went to the Strand, a local play area. Despite the fact it's August and therefore Summer, it wasn't exactly too warm. They didn't seem at all bothered though and loved the paddling pool. Cara was the only one to get wet. She bent down to scoop up some water to throw and in doing so, dipped her bottom in the water. Cue soaking wet shorts. She was pleased though as she got to sit on the towel on the way home!

Monday, 16 August 2010

Instructions for t-shirt transfer

Following the comment she left on the t-shirt transfers, this is just for smilernbp - hope it's useful!

It's actually surprisingly easy to make these.

You get the transfer paper (I got it from Staples - it was £10 for 5 sheets, so fairly expensive. That was buy one get one free though, so was actually for 2 packs and 10 sheets. I'm sure you could find it cheaper online, but I was too impatient!)

Once you've got your paper, find your image. I then copied and pasted the images into Word and played around with the placement of them to get the most I could on the paper. You can use the tools in Word to flip the image - this is only important if you've got writing on your image, to ensure it comes out the right way on the t-shirt.

You then print onto the paper (instructions included in the paper, but you print on the white side). I've just got a normal printer and normal ink - nothing special. Just printed it as normal.

Cut out the image. Any white you leave will come out, so it's okay if it's going on a white t-shirt, but more important to be careful if going on to a coloured t-shirt.

Next, iron your t-shirt so it is flat and put the image on face down. Make sure the steam is turned off on your iron and it is set to its hottest temperature. Iron the transfer on. Keep ironing until the iron logo on the back of the paper is 80% brown (again, instructions in the paper). Peel the backing off. I then put a plain sheet of paper on the transfer and iron it for 5 seconds before peeling it off.

The instructions then say to leave for 24 hours and wash inside out before wearing. Cara is like me though and is too impatient for that!

Sunday, 15 August 2010

I had a bit of a brainwave!

My husband has a t-shirt with a cartoon image of the A-Team on it. He loves it and wears it a lot. As a result, it is beginning to look worn and also has a tiny hole on it. I had a brain wave a little while ago, that we could get some iron on transfers from ebay, buy cheap t-shirts and voila, he would have lots of new t-shirts. I bought one t-shirt a little while ago to test it and it worked, it was just a case of buying more t-shirts for him.

So...last night, I had a brain wave. Let's do some for Cara. I was looking on ebay at the transfers - £1 each. Which isn't too bad, but then I thought...maybe I could do those as well.

Cue a trip to Staples to buy the paper and then a trip to Primark to look for bargain t-shirts. Bargain t-shirts they were. They were on sale for £1 for two - one white and one pink. Perfect. So I've had a busy afternoon and now Cara has lots of novel t-shirts to wear.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Lovely e-mail surprise

Our day has been a bit up and down - mainly centred on Cara pushing boundaries and testing limits. If we say it's black, she says it's white and so on.

So, this morning, after being given several chances, we told her she wouldn't be playing with her friends today. As a result, we all walked down to the shop and then called in the park on the way home. After also going to step class this morning, my knees were screaming at me, so I sat down while H pushed her on the swing. I took out my phone and checked my e-mails.

Check this out:

"Hi Dianna,


You have probably already seen on the website, you are our lucky winner of the Sakura Jewellery Giveaway competition, and our pair of silver and amethyst Orion Earrings are waiting to be dispatched to you!

Please can you email me your full address details including postcode, and I will pass these on to the designer, who will post them to you.

Thank you for entering our competition, and helping to spread the word for UK Handmade.

Best wishes

I can't believe I won! It's one of those things where I forgot I had even entered, so when the mail dropped in my inbox I couldn't believe it. I had to read it several times to fully take it in!

You can check out what I won here - - how lucky am I???

Child and dog

When I was pregnant, we worried about how the dog, who had been my baby up until then, would accept the new addition. We needn't have worried - from day one, he has loved her - even when her love for him is a little overwhelming at times!

Saturday, 7 August 2010

I heart Bob and Jillian

So I recently discovered The Biggest Loser. Now considering they are RE showing season 8 of the US version and there have been several UK and Australian versions, I've been missing out on this for a VERY long time.

Now I've discovered it though, I simply can not get enough and will even admit to having a slight crush on both Bob and Jillian - but seriously, who hasn't??

I am loving the transformation of the contestants (and I'm talking about ALL the contestants as I'm currently watching three different seasons of the US version and one of the UK version)

Since damaging a ligament in my knee about 12 weeks ago, I haven't been to the gym. It's the kind of thing where you miss it for the first week of so but then it's easy not to go. My knee is still twinging and I know it isn't 100% but today, I went to the gym. I just did some walking and went on the cross trainer, but I really enjoyed it. I was going to stop at one point on the cross trainer and had 2 1/2 minutes to my goal time. I thought to myself "what would Bob and Jillian say?" and that carried me through!

So...long may it continue! (although I think the knee may pay for it in the morning!)

Sunday, 1 August 2010

"oh well..."

"I'll just have to get bored then" is what Cara just said when she realised it's too light for her to play on her DS in the car.

Friday, 30 July 2010

The kid who doesn't like walking...

...walked all the way to our local library and back this morning. A grand distance of 1.6 miles. I'm so proud of her!

We set out from home and had a nice leisurely walk there (she took her scooter and scooted some of the way). We got to the library, where I enjoyed a nice rest! Then we walked home, calling in a local bakery on the way, where Cara bought a sausage roll and a drink. We sat in the park and had a little rest while she ate her sausage roll and we shared the drink before walking the rest of the way home.

It was a lovely way to spend some time - we probably could have driven there in less than 5 minutes, but it meant spending some lovely time together, getting some fresh air and killing a good two hours.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Beautiful hair

I heart Cara's hair.

I dread the day when she asks for it all to be chopped off - as did my own parent's most probably, when I was about 8 years old. I remember feeling so grown up at the hairdressers as they asked me if I wanted a glass of lemonade while they chopped my locks off. I did - of course!

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Family time

Yesterday, H had the car, so he picked Cara up from my mums and then came and picked me up from work. Cara fell asleep in the car before they even reached school, so when we got home, I carried her in and put her to bed. I wasn't too far behind, going to sleep at about 5.20pm. The end of year exhaustion is setting in.

Cara woke up at about 7pm, so I sent her downstairs to H. He then took her and Buzz to a little club we are members of. They got in at about 9.30pm - I found out today that Cara walked all the way there and back - for the child who is so lazy it is unreal, this was a real achievement for her. Anyway - in the club, they have a machine of 50p cards - put 50p in, get a card out. It has 5 strips on, which you peel back. If you match 3, you win anything from 50p to £200. So...Cara asked H if she was allowed one. He bought her it, she peeled back the first one and said, "Daddy, I've won." He looked. She had won. £200. He couldn't believe it! Lord knows that at the moment, with H out of work and nothing coming up anytime soon, it was well received!

So, today, I managed to stay up beyond 5.20pm and we had some family time playing games (all four of us - the dog included!). First of all, we played a Moving House game - Cara won. Then we played a game I had when I was little - Rings on Your Fingers. She won again. It's not even as though we LET her win.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

"It smells of mummy"

Cara cuddled up to me in my bed last night. She asked if she could have my pillow, so we swapped. She lay down and then said in a little happy voice "It smells of mummy." I'm hoping she meant it in a good way!

It was her last day ever at pre-school yesterday. I can't belive where the past two years have gone. When she first started, she barely spoke (we had just had a speech and language therapy assessment saying she had delayed speech), she was in pull ups and my mum had to stay with her for the sessions to help he settle in. Now here she is, all grown up.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

My garden

When we moved into our house almost 7 years ago, the garden was okay, but nothing special. Part of it was fenced off and overgrown and the shed was well and truly past it's best. We've spent a lot of time over the years trying to turn it into a family garden and plant and grow things.

Here are a few pictures from over the years:

March 2007 - my dad and the husband dismantling said shed. You can just see the overgrown weeds to the left of the shed.

April 2007 - we cleared the overgrown weeds and prepared to turf

April 2007 - turfing almost complete

April 2007 - we put up a fence so Cara could play up there and there wouldn't be any danger of her falling off the edge. It doesn't seem real that at that point she was only 15 months old!

July 2007 - After putting the fence up, we seemed to play more on the main part!

April 2008 - A year later

July 2010 - today! It's changed a lot and we've really lucky this year in what we've managed to grow. More on that later though.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

We had a lovely impromptu swim

When we got home, Cara went and knocked for her friend, who it turned out, wasn't in. She started to get upset, so we played a game together and then I asked her if she wanted to go swimming. She did. So off we went. It was totally spur of the moment and was lovely. We played and swam - she swam all the way from the edge to the middle of the pool where the lane divider thing is, all by herself - no float, no noodle, nothing. Just her little arms! I would say it's about 3 metres or so - she kept coming up for air and then just kept going - I was so so proud of her.

When we got out, she handed her noodle in and the man said he'd watched her and she had done really well. She then said to me, "can I have a sticker when we get in?"

On the down side of things, the husband has one more day at work and then that's it. Looks like we'll be looking for a job for him.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Cara's drawing

Cara sat on the landing last night for a good ten minutes, drawing this. She bought it in to show me all proud of herself. It's a person (in the middle) about to get changed into the clothes on the left and then they are taking the dog (with 6 legs) for a walk. Not sure what the other stuff is. I love seeing how her drawings develop and how her imagination works.

Monday, 5 July 2010

Not a happening really

Life as usual at the moment...I haven't forgotten you little blog (or gone back to old habits!)

Will update soon - just as soon as something excting happens. In the meantime, I'm focusing on getting through the next 14 days feeling as awake as possible as I just feel utterly exhausted at the moment!

Thursday, 24 June 2010


A few months ago, I spoke to someone at work about organising a trip for our Year 10 Public Services group. There are only 12 of them and she had a contact who could help organise a visit and a tour around RAF Odiham in Hampshire. "Not a problem" I told her "I'll drive the mini bus."

So, after much to'ing and fro'ing with dates, it was agreed we would go on Wednesday 23rd June. At the beginning of last week I was bragging to people that I have PPA on a Wednesday period 6, which meant I could leave school early and be home in time for the all important England match.

Until I realised it was the same day as the trip. Arrgggghhhhhh. It was one of those things that you agree to and then when it sneaks up on you, you kind of wonder why you did it.

Anyway, the day came. I spent 15 minutes trying to find the fuel cap to fill the mini bus up with diesel (thankfully no one else was there!) and then we spent 2 and a half hours driving from Kent to Hampshire.

The day was absolutely fantastic. We got to see and do so much - it was amazing.

First of all, we had a tour of the fire station and then they showed us a little demonstration. Then we saw some Chinooks take off. Then we had lunch. Then we went up the air traffic control tower and got to see all the radar. Then we saw where they train the dogs. Then we got to actually go in a Chinook. The students got to sit in the pilot seat - how cool is that (I could have done, but because of the dodgy knee, I was worried I'd get in and not get back out!)

(excuse the sweaty look - it WAS the second hottest day of the year so far and it was HOT in there!)

It took us an hour and forty five minutes to get back home, during which time, we couldn't get Five Live to tune in, so we couldn't even listen to the football. We pulled into school just as the game finished! At least England won though, so we can all see the game on Sunday.

Then.....last night, we had Cara's primary school introduction. I welled up a few times while they were talking. My baby is all growed up! Where has all that time gone? Anyway - today, I am shattered. Think all that driving is catching up with me!!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

"Shall we wash Grandad's tea pot up?"

I found out today, that when Grandad is being grumpy, Cara asks my mum if they should wash his tea pot up. Apparently, he doesn't like his tea-pot being washed and so they do it when he's grumpy to almost get back at him. My mum said that if he is super grumpy, then they give it an extra hard scrub! I'm glad I don't drink tea!

Monday, 21 June 2010


A little while ago, we changed Cara's swimming lesson. She used to go on a Saturday and myself or H would have to get in with her. With the introduction of trampolining before swimming on a Saturday, it was all becoming too much and she would just mess around and not really do too much. So...when I joined the gym...I signed her up for the swimming lessons there. On a Monday and in the pool by herself. She loves it!

There are only 4 children in the group - Cara and 3 other little girls. I'm the only mum that sits and watches; one goes in the pool with her other (younger) daughter and two go and have a coffee/sit and chat with friends.

Today, there were only three of them as one (the one whose mum goes in the pool wth her sister during the lesson) was on holiday so they all went into the big pool. In the toddler pool, they can stand up, so don't really try, but in the big pool, they can't, so they have to work harder so to speak. Hazel, the swimming instructor is fantastic and does a great job. She got in and had Cara and one of the other little girls. The third one was a little bit late coming out, so had only just sat down on the side. Her mum had gone back out and this poor little girl just sat and looked at me. "Okay?" I asked her. She kind of half nodded at me and then her bottom lip started to wobble. "I don't like the big pool" she told me. My heart just went out to her and I will admit to being a little upset that her mum kind of sees her swimming lesson as a time to sit and socialise rather than watch and encourage her daughter. I know I shouldn't judge and I don't know the full ins and outs - for all I know this may be her mums only free time - but this little girl was clearly so scared and worried. "You'll be okay" I said to her in as reassuring way as possible.

Before she could get too upset, it was her turn. She went in the water and after a bit of a wobbly start, oh my goodness - she just went. She had a shark fin on, but she was going so fast and was so confident - it was like a different child.

When she got back to the edge, I clapped her and told her well done. She looked so pleased and happy - I just wished it had come from her mum and not from me though - a total stranger.

At the end of the lesson, her mum came and got her and dropped her brother off for his lesson which follows her one. She took her through to the changing room and as I walked past with Cara, I heard her ask the little girl if she had been in the big pool for the whole lesson. I admit - I butted in. I said what a fantastic job the little girl had done and how brilliant she had been. The mum seemed genuinely happy - imagine how happy and proud she would have been had she seen that for herself and not heard about it from a random stranger.

Children grow up so quickly and things like this to them are important. I would hate to miss one of Cara's lessons. For example, while in the big pool today, the instructor was getting her to practice getting her arm up out of the water on each stroke, so she said to Cara, "wave at mummy." Instead, she pulled her arm out of the water and gave me the biggest thumbs up possible. She may not be the world's most natural swimmer, but she loves her lessons, and to me, that's priceless. I wouldn't miss that for the world.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

So it's official....I am lazy!

Too lazy infact to even blog regularly. How pathetic is that? So, I'm going to try whole heartedly (until tomorrow maybe!) to blog on a regular basis. I mean - how hard can it be? I bet there's even an app for the iphone that would help me in my task.

So, today we went to a boot fair for the first time in an age. After damaging a ligament in my knee five weeks ago, it's the first time I've felt able to. We got a huge haul of new games for Cara. The type that would have cost a small fortune had we bought them brand new! Amongst the lot was this

I can remember playing with something similar (maybe a different version) when I was little, so for the bargain price of 50p I snapped it up. Unfortunately, it didn't come with any pieces - just the shell of the post office. So, while Cara whittled away the hours today playing with her friends (we had a house full again!) I set about designing and making some resources for her. She now has an array of TV licences, car tax, insurance forms, savings booklets, paying in slips, cheques, special delivery forms and stamps. She and her friend spent some time playing with it.

She is now having some wind down time in her room before bed and is happily playing away.

She just said to me "Are we going on holiday tomorrow?" I replied "No sweetheart, I've got to go to work" "can't you cancel it?" she asked. Wishful thinking!

Here she is on the bouncy castle this morning

Saturday, 27 February 2010

...and whoosh, they were gone!

This afternoon, Cara and I went to a local theatre to see a stage show of the classic children's story, Room on the Broom.


You can see a clip from the show on You Tube. The show lasted about an hour and it ran straight through without a break (much to Cara's disappointment for some reason!). It was just the right length for small people and with only 4 actors performing, I figure just the right length for them as well!

The day then got even better when the husband won a bet he had done on the football. He put £1 on 10 games. 1 game was cancelled, but he got the other 9 right, netting a tidy sum of £235 (although that one game bought this down from £495!)

Good day all round :-)

Friday, 26 February 2010

My daughter just made me cry

but in such a heart warming good way :-)

She's in bed watching Toy Story 2. I'm sat next to her. She is stroking my hair.
"You are such a smart girl" she starts off saying "and you are beautiful" and then "I love your hair" followed finally by "I love you mummy."

How could I not have a tear at that??

Monday, 22 February 2010

Today's offerings

Today, my mum had been teaching Cara about the different types of houses there are. "What's the one called when it's all on its own?" she asked her. "A bunkbed" Cara replied.

Then in the car on the way home, she was asking me about the planets and Earth and where the moon was. She is a little obsessed with this at the moment and the other day, we looked at a book together to see how all the planets are lined up and are arranged. "When will it be summer?" she asked me, so I tried to explain that the Earth spins very very slowly (so slow we can't feel it) and when our part gets to face the sun, then it will be summer time. "Will our house wobble?" she asked me.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Too long

Yes, yes....I'm a terrible blogger. I know. I didn't even really decide to take a break, it's just something that happened really.

I went back to work after the summer holiday in September and that first term till Christmas is always the worst. It's like being on a rollercoaster that shows no signs of slowing down or stopping. Winter then came. Boo. I seriously hate winter. I don't know what it is, I just seem to always hit a dark patch.

So, what's been happening?
1. We have a new addition to the household. A hamster called Honey. We got her just before Christmas. She is seriously cute.
2. Christmas. Cara gave up her dummies. Yay. She did a fantastic job. Put them in the special bag for Father Christmas who transformed them magically into a pink Nintendo DS and that was it. She has probably asked for one about 4 times - always when she is tired. I just tell her she doesn't have a dummy any more and that is it.
3. Birthday. Cara turned 4 in January. It was lovely. She had a party with her friends at soft play on the Sunday and then on the Monday (her actual birthday), H and I collected her from pre-school, we all went out for dinner and when we got home she opened her presets. It was lovely.

This week has been half term and we've had a lovely week together. I think it was a few things that happened this week and little things she said that made me want to log them and blog again.

Monday - we went to the cinema. We saw The Princess and the Frog. It was really enjoyable and she was a pleasure to be with.

Tuesday - I had my hair cut and then my mum watched Cara while I did some marking. We then went out for lunch. When we got home Cara and I made cakes. "Good work partner" she told me when we had finished, giving me a high 5 in the process!

Wednesday - We had a bit of a running about day. It started with Cara having her hair trimmed at the hairdressers. She sobbed. She then had a doctor's appointment because she has yet another cough (she has had three lots of antibiotics in the past 3 months). He referred her for a chest x-ray - she we went up to the hospital. She got a little teary on the way, but when we got there she was an absolute star. The radiographers were fantastic with her - she had her x-ray and then they showed it to her on the screen. We then went to my aunts house where my mum and all of her sisters (5 of them) met up. We spent the afternoon with them.

Thursday - we had planned to go and see a colleague from work who went on maternity leave at Christmas. The baby was due next week but we got a text message cancelling as she had the baby! Instead, we went out for lunch with my parents and then popped to Bluewater for a little bit of shopping.

Friday - we went bowling and then to Pizza Hut for lunch. She beat me at bowling and it wasn't even as though I let her! The shame. We then went to my parent's and then my mum and I took Cara and my neices swimming. They were exhausted afterwards and spent the afternoon playing really nicely together.

And that was the week. Phew.
Hopefully I won't leave it so long next time.