Writing Workshop – Hues of Orange

We had a caravan when I was growing up.  No, not one of those wonderful static caravans, no we had a box on wheels, so summers were spent setting off in the dead of the night to the English Riviera. 

Well before seat belts became compulsory, my parents would pack the cool box, the pillows and the duvets to make the back seat in to a makeshift bed for my younger brother and me and once we were asleep they would gently lift us to the car and start our adventure.

Often the we woke to the sound of cars thundering by, as my parents had a cup of tea from the thermos flask in a lay by before setting off again on what seemed like a never ending journey to the other end of the country.  A place where the sun shone and was much warmer than our little patch of the North East.  

Once we arrived at our destination we were dispatched to the park on the site whilst the van was prepared for that night, only returning when our stomachs started rumbling.  Left to make friends and leave the parents alone, so that they could open up the wine and get the windbreak pitched.
I remember these trips fondly.  Of baths in buckets and cold showers.  Of share toilet blocks and running in the dark and cold for a pee in the middle of the night.  I look back on the endless days playing swingball with my dad and my mum managing to cook a Sunday roast in a caravan oven and I want to repeat them with my children.

I grew up with regular visits to the English seaside.  Where you needed to have a windbreak and a great big towel for once we came out of the water.  I have memories of being in the sea in a blow up dinghy connected to my dads arm by a long piece of rope, of having the freedom to rock pool and build sandcastles.  The great big moats filling up as the tide came in.

The Breakfasts were always cooked by Dad and we would have sausages, bacon and eggs fresh from the closest farm.  We never had to have cereal like at home.  Holidays were special.  A break from the norm, something to be cherished. e feeling of sand between by toes and often between my teeth too.  

I used to hate the holiday coming to an end, I used to dread the packing up.  I loved spending time with my dad and this meant that he would be returning to work.  I was a real daddy's girl and we would be inseparable for most of the holiday.
We would always stop at a farm and pick up bags of plums and other fruit before making the long journey home, once home we would make jam or "sunshine in a jar" as it became known to me as a reminder of those heady days of high summer.

Those care free, heady days of the 70's, where everything seemed to be orange or brown or it is in my memory, but I wonder how much of that is due to the orange hue that the photographs have taken over time.

I loved the summer, I still do.

This was written for the writing workshop at Sleep is for the weak and I chose prompt 1. Summer



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The Gallery – Freindship


Long may it last


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Children’s Craft Showcase – Fathers Day Cards and Presents

Fathers day will soon be upon us, it is Sunday 20th June this year and I have been busy thinking about cards and gifts for MadDad.  If you are anything like me then you would prefer to give a home made card every time.I have a couple of very simple ideas for you. kid made fathers day cards
I was inspired by Valerie at Frugal Family Fun Blog for this card.
Materials
Card stock
pencil or pen
circle stickers, various colours
scissors
Method
Initially fold your card stock in half to to create a greeting card shape
Draw a number of lines horizontally across the card to make the wire for the birds to sit on.
Depending on the age of your child, you can either cut the stickers for them or help them.
 
You use half a sticker (semi-circle) for the birds body, a sixth of the sticker to make the tail feathers and an eight of the circle to make the birds beak.
Using either a pencil or a fine liner add some feet and eyes for the birds
It is really easy, simple, very effective and then all that is left is to add your cheesy bird quotesNext up is a twist on our favourite chick cards, we have done this for my niece who is 5 this week.
Materials Card stock Paper Scissors feathers Googlie eyes Glue Method Again very simple, Mini cut out two bird shapes (semi circle) and stuck them to the folded card stock.
We used two triangles cut out of foam for their beaks and a feather for the tails.  He also used foam shapes to add an age and name on to the card. Scrap Art Book Marks This is a super way of using up and making purposeful bits of art that the children have done.  For ours I used our Mable Paintings.
kid made fathers day bookmarks recycling art
Materials Card Scissors or paper cutter Scrap Artwork Paper Glue Laminator or clear sticky backed plastic (also know as contact paper) Method
Cut and matt the scrap artwork and your choice or card, making sure that the artwork is slightly smaller than the card backing and glue on.
We made a back for the bookmark out of paper, which read Happy Father's Day 2009 and then mini decorated it and stuck it on to the rear of the bookmark.
I then laminated them, I got four in to one pouch leaving space for the sheet to adhere between the bookmarks.  If you don't have a laminator (mine was £5 from Tesco), then you can use clear sticky backed plastic or contact paper.
I then used my guillotine to cut them up to individual double sided book marks.
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I hope I have inspired you to get crafting for Father's day this year  and if you do, I would love for you to come back and link here, so that we can all see and maybe have a try of your ideas too.
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Halcyon days – An afternoon event at the school


MadDad and I spent a wonderful afternoon at Maxi's school last Wednesday.  We had been invited for a coffee, cake and fun with the children.


I had forgotten my camera, so I took these images with the histomatic application on the iPhone - yes I know old hat by now, but I am a late adopter!


We spent a brilliant 1 and half hours listening to all the children in the year singing songs and playing games.


The weather was perfect, not too sunny, but warm.


The teaching staff had all been very busy baking and the cakes were delicious.


But the best part for us was just watching Maxi have fun in his own environment.


To be able to chat to his teacher in a relaxed environment and meet up with more of the parents.

Yes it was all to raise funds for the year group trip, but it was a fun afternoon and I want to say thankyou very much for a great way to fundraise.

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A Weekend in Pictures











 

Yes, we have all had a blast!


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Spiritual Sunday – Kindness


I talked earlier in the week about the values I am trying to instill in to my children and this week we have been discussing kindness.

Fellow Blogger Suzie at New Day New Lesson has a kindness club, so we have been talking about her weekly initiatives.


What is kindness and why it is important? this is one of the things we have been discussing this week
  • the quality of being warmhearted, sympathetic, considerate, charitable, pleasant and humane
  • To be able to forgive
The boys have been actively working on their acts of kindness this week and we had a great example by Mini at our community coffee morning yesterday.  It has been very hot and they were serving ice pops for the children and Mini had consumed so many he was facing turning in to one and they were running out.  He took his 10p and and went to ask for another and was told it was the last one, when one of his friends from school came and wanted it, as he hadn't had one, mini gave him his.  I didn't prompt this, he just did it.

I am trying to explain to the boys that they should treat others, as they would wish to be treated and slowing I do believe it is going in.

How to you introduce Christianity or spiritualism in to your children's lives?  I found MadDad chatting away to our local Jehovah's Witness this morning, now MadDad is an atheist through and through, but he was discussing with them the importance to him in bring up his children with christian values and beliefs until they were old enough to make their own decisions.
It really made me smile, he was stood on the drive with the boys (waiting for me as usually to go off to the coffee morning) and they actually waved us goodbye, he might not have agreed with their methods or branch of religion, but he listened and chatted to them and this made me proud to be with this great man.




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Good enough to Eat Swap


I took part in the good enough to eat swap, where I was partnered with Gill The Vintage Gardener


Gill is a very talented lady and she sent some wonderful things, all tied up with gardening twine



A fab lavender heart and marching bookmark


Some delicious fabric


Two wonderful pot stands, we are using these on the dining table



Look at these stunning tags, Gill makes these and sells them at her Folksy Shop


I also got this divine pouch filled with more tags, which I adore


Plus some lovely stationery (which for some reason blogger wont include the right way up).
 
 


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I am over at Baby Budgeting

In  case you are wondering where I am today, you can find me over at fellow Mads Finalist's Baby Budgeting where I am cooking with glue.


There is still still time to vote, so please do vote for me by clicking here.


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Writing Workshop – The best things come to those who wait

 
The best things come to those who wait, well that's what they say.
I am not good at waiting, no I don't have a patient bone in my body.
If I want something then I want it yesterday.  I want it NOW.
I have been known to stamp my feet and bat my eyelashes to try and get what I want.
But what about when not one can give you that thing?
What then?

For me I hid my need, I pretended that I was happy.
I even managed to convince myself that life was good.
And it was.  I was happy.
I lived a good life, a great life and managed not to think about what was missing.
But ever so often, something happened to make me realise what was missing.
Something that made me take a sharp breath in order to take the pain away.
Where was I, yes life was good.

Every so often, I would be given hope, only to have it dashed.
I was given glimpses in to the life that might be.
Sometimes these periods lasted six weeks, sometimes a lot longer.
But each time they were fleeting, leaving me with a sense of deja vu.
Each time I came back stronger and more determined that there was nothing missing in my life.
We talked about the fact that we were content with our lot and I was finally resigned to what I had.
Then it happened, something collided and the planets aligned.
Finally after years of waiting,
After the heartache of getting close, far too close on occasion.
We were blessed with a happy, healthy baby.
And then just like buses who seem to come all at once.
fifteen months later we were blessed with another.


No I no longer need to convince myself that life is good.
life really is good, we really didn't know just what we were missing.
I didn't realise that my jigsaw puzzle had four pieces.
But now I have what I wanted all along and I am not going to stop giving my all.
I am happy.

This week for Sleep is for the Weaks Writing Workshop I chose Prompt 2 Write about something that was worth waiting for – what was worth the patience and frustration?
 
-Inspired by new mummy’s Tiddlyompompom and And One more Means Five who both had gorgeous babies this last week. Congratulations!






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The Gallery – Self portrait

Yes I too am the one always behind the camera in this house, the one taking hundreds, not thousands of images. 

So when Tara at Sticky Fingers posted that this weekstheme was Self Portrait.

So May I present, me

 
Me and the boys all snuggled up and watching Doctor who a couple of weeks ago.


Me with Mini as a baby with long hair, before my operations


Finally me, about an hour ago, after my first trip to the hairdressers in a while, shorter hair, a lot greyer, but happy.



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