I wasn’t going to use this blog to write about my mastectomy and failed reconstruction, but it is a really big part of my life and, therefore, our family’s life too. I underwent the bi-lateral prophylactic mastectomy and reconstruction at the end of February this year and due to compilations had to have the reconstruction reversed. I then developed a post operative infection that very nearly killed me (sounds very dramatic, but at the time was horrific) and am just healing both physically and mentally. I have been very lucky in that I am receiving some wonderful counselling from Tees Valley Counselling Trust to help me to become accepting of my more »


A work in progress

One of my Friends mentioned that they had used blackboard paint on the door of their playhouse and I had a light bulb moment – ding! We used the boys birthday moneys last year to get them a playhouse and at the time painted it in two shades of green as they had requested. I also knew that we had a tub of bright blue chalkboard paint that we had used to paint the top of the small table in their bedroom, so we all set about sprucing up the playhouse. MadDad gave the whole of the house another coat of the protective paint, I painted the door and the two more »

Danby Village Show

Me and the boys went to Danby Village Show this afternoon with friends and had a great time. It is a traditional agricultural show and very popular, as it is set in the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors National Park and Danby is a lovely village. It was made all the nicer as the sun continued to shine. The main event was the appearance of the Glaisdale Fox hounds in the main arena and I was really surprised by Maxi Mad as he stroked one of the Fox Hounds (he is scared of dogs). This pack has established since 1877 and now hunt within the grounds of the law. The boys loved more »



To Tired Tuesday 3

No Words today, just wanted to share some of my favorite recent photo’s which never fail to pick me up when I am down.

Childrens Centre Craft Afternoon

The mini’s were invited to a craft afternoon at our local children’s centre. It was still raining this afternoon, so along we went. The boys had great fun as usual and went a little overboard on the glitter and all things sparkly (they take after their mum on that one) Here is a selection of what they make, fireworks, shakers, a pasta necklace and a dragon. There was such a variety of mums and children there, the mums who were horrified a their little darlings getting covered in paint and glue, the ones who didn’t care and just left the children too it whilst they chatted (ignored them completely), the mums more »



Stone Bugs 1

Today was another raining British summer day today, so we decided to paint some stones that we collected the other weekend at the beach. The minimads have been examining bugs and lady birds lately in the garden, so I thought we could make our own colourful stone bugs. This was a really easy activity for them and they both wishes we had collected more, so we will next time and I will varnish them and we can give them as presents to family. They basically painted them in poster paint of their chosen colour and then let them dry. Then they did the detailing and stuck on googly eyes. They turned more »

Spiritual Sunday

The sun is shining again this wonderful Sunday morning and the birds are chirping. It is a glorious morning. I find it much easier to cope with the early wakings that two energetic boys bring, when the morning is a beautiful as it is today. We have already hung the washing on the line, fed the cat, birds and the day is beginning. My Thoughts are Creative I say out to every negative thought that comes to mind. No person or place, or anything has power over me, for I am the only thinker in my mind. I create my own reality and everyone in it. have to admit that positivity more »


Drink Bottle Skittles 3

MaxiMad has wanted to make skittles from drinks bottles for a while, so we started collecting the bottles (thanks Grandma) and once we had 15 we decided to make a start. I knew it was going to be a long and messy project so was prepared for this and PVA’d the bottles, so that the paint would stick. The boys decided to do a first coat of white paint, so I added a little PVA to the mix and let them slap it on. That took a day to dry. I then added another coat overnight, to fill in any gaps. Today we decided to paint the bottles in bright colours, more »

Rain Catchers 4

This afternoon as one of our crafts is a do a little bit of a time one, the boys wanted to make rain catchers, like they had seen on Cbeebies. I was hoping for a little less rain this summer, but it is Britain!! This is our interpretation of it, as we couldn’t find the information on the website!!! We took a couple of water bottles and I cut the top third off and we turned it upside down and fitted it in the bottom two thirds of the bottle to use as a funnel. We then taped the jagged edge at the top with some inexpensive electricians tape (I had more »

rain catcher


Baby Steps

We have spent the afternoon outside scootering (if that is the right word). The eldest MiniMad is quite proficient on his scooter, but his younger brother is not so keen. He wants to be able to just do it like his big brother and refuses to use a larger wheeled scooter – one of the challenges of a 15 month gap between the boys. So we have been working on the premise of baby steps and he has really enjoyed this afternoons practice and what I thought would be an hour out at the most has turned into a nearly 4 hour scooterthon!!! I think once he got it, he just more »

Water Wednesday

We have had a wonderful day again we spent the morning at the swimming pool as we do on a Wednesday at Duckings and it is really nice to have both the minimads there together again. Their interaction is really improving and they really enjoyed throwing the ball to each other. The both stayed within their depth without armbands and I kept a watchful eye. It is a joy to see them both so confident in the water. We also had a great afternoon playing at a friends and the boys had real fun just making dens and tents with some blankets under the dinning room table. We also made a more »



Displaying Artwork 4

One of the most difficult things doing a lot of craft and art stuff with the minimads is how to display it and then store it or recycle it. We wanted to have some on display in our kitchen and after using blue tac and it leaving marks on the walls decided to hand some tension wire (the type for hanging net curtains or shower curtains) and hang the pictures on that. It works a treat. Once they wires are getting full I take a digital picture of the boys work and store the best in a concertina file (i have one for each of them) and recycle the rest. They more »

Encouraging Drinking

If your children are anything like the minimads then getting them to drink enough can sometimes be a chore, so I froze some Jelly snakes in to some ice cubes and popped them in their drinks. It was a great success and they drank up all their water and juice to get to the treats.



What a difference a day makes

You would never guess that yesterday was grotty and wet. Today has been bright, sunny and a joy. we have had a fantastic day picnicking and kite flying on the North Yorkshire Moors followed with a fun afternoon at Sandsend Beach. The perfect end to the perfect day.

Spiritual Sunday 2

It is a beautiful morning here, after what seems like weeks of rain and cloudy skys, the sun is shinning brightly. The MiniMads woke me bright and early this morning and Sundays are MadDads lie in, so I was somewhat grumpy at being woke as early as I was, that is until I came downstairs out of the dark in to the glorious sun. It reminded me of a recent card I had read I let go off all expectations I flow freely and lovingly with life. I love myself. I know that only good awaits me at every turn. Once we learn not to have expectations or in my case more »


Paper Plate Craft

It has been very wet here again so we decided to crack open the craft cupboard again and this time so something with paper plates. Each of the boys decorated their paper plates with water colour tablet paints from the pound shop. Then they cut out images from the Tesco Magazine (any food magazine is perfect for this and I am not one for throwing much away) Then they stuck the food to their plates If you have older children you could use this activity to start doing different food groups or you could used tissue paper to make the food. If you have younger children, it pays to have some more »

Living by the Seaside

We are so lucky to live 5 mins from the sea and sometimes we forget that it is beautiful in the rain as much as it is when it is sunny. The boys wanted to watch the sea this morning so we obliged and had a lovely morning watching the fishing boats and the tide come in and then went for fish and chips. Sometimes simple is best.



Noahs Ark Childrens Centre

We spent most of the day here today and it is a great place. Full of things the children can do, not just the obligatory soft play, slides, ball pool, trampoline, but also crafts, dressing up, jigsaws, play dough, kitchen area and reading area. I took my 4 year old niece too and we had a ball. We spent a lot of the morning on the active things going down the slides and just running off lots of energy. We then had a lovely healthy lunch (they don’t serve chips or fizzy drinks), all three of the children ate really nicely and enjoyed their food. We then went to the craft more »

Shortbread star wands

We have had great fun making these this afternoon, we picked up the idea from the summer issue of the Tesco Magazine and it was really easy. Ingredients 275g plain flour 200g cold butter 100g icing sugar 2 egg yolks lolly sticks To Decorate egg white sprinkles basically, you add the butter and flour and mix to a breadcrumb consistency Stir in the egg yolks and icing cugar until it forms a dough roll out on a floured board Cut in to shapes – we used stars, my tip would be to make the shortbread pretty thick. The eldest MiniMad pushed in the lolly sticks and then you cook at 200 more »

shortbread wands

A nicer sort of Thursday 2

Today has been Thursday, but a different sort of Thursday. A rearranged less stressed Thursday. A much nicer, happier, more relaxing and preferential Thursday – yes you get my drift. We had friends over this morning and played and laughed. We then had lunch from leftovers. Went to animal antics at Sure start Went to mums and got her shopping list Left the boys with her Did her and my shopping Went back to mums and cooked for the boys Fed the boys Got back in the car and came home to a house where MadDad had emptied the bins Put the recycling out for collection watered the plants fed the more »