Monthly Archives: December 2010


To my Darling Boys 9

Each year I write a letter to you both, talking about what we have done during the past year and all the things that I want to tell you.  It has been really tough writing this one, as your dearest Grandma was found dead by Uncle C on Christmas Day.  I know that you were scared of Mummy’s screaming and tears, but you both were really good boys and went to Nana and Grandads and have been a tower of strength to be in the last week or so. You have both been so lucky to have spent time with your Grandma, who loved you so much and really enjoyed her more »


And the beat goes on 11

I would love to think that my mothers life was so precious that time stood still or even blurred in to the slow motion that you get in films, where every second lasted more than a minute.  I would like to say that we are mourning her in the old fashioned way, but with two boys aged four and five and Christmas things have had to carry on with some semblance or normality.  Not that I haven’t grieved, I have and still am and will be for a long time yet.  I am sad in front of the boys and they both know it is OK to be sad too and more »


RIP Margaret Elizabeth – my mum 77

Mum with Maxi (16 March 2005) Margaret Elizabeth 26 September 1943 to 24/25 December 2010 Tragically my brother found my mum dead on Christmas morning.  It appears she died not long after talking to me on Christmas Eve at 9.45pm.  She was making a cup of tea in the kitchen to take to bed with her. Dearest Mum I wish I could gather my thoughts together enough to provide the words I need to say how much I am missing you already. My heart is breaking at the thought of never speaking to you again, but I am so glad our last words were I love you and our last conversation more »


So why all the traditions? 9

I guess people may wonder why I am such a big fan of traditions and why we have so many as a family? This is hard to write, but I think putting in down in writing may lay aside some old worries and ghosts of times past. I worry that this time next year or the year after that I may not be here with my wonderful family.  I know that may sound trite, but it isn’t.  Yes I don’t have any cancer now, but even after all the precautions I have taken, I am still at more of a risk than most people of dying of a cancer related to more »


Baked gifts given with love 6

  Each year we make Mini Christmas cakes for loved ones and special friends.  I do try and make them all edible and as the boys are getting older, I have two special helpers (which can leave finger marks in the icing like above).   I like to think that these cakes are baked and fashion with the love that we feel for the people we give them too.  We also gave them to the teachers and teaching assistants at the school, as yes I am angry at the school receptionists, but the teachers are wonderful people, who I entrust my most precious people too.   These two are for my more »


Love 29

Love for me is the man who stands beside be everyday. The man who has been there for me through some really tough times. He has given me injections, changed dressings and nursed to back to health. He is a great provider and wonderful listener. Together we have created two boys with the most amazing potential. I hope that we will grow old together. Thank you for being my partner on this journey called life. I love you.


Christmas traditions – Christmas Eve 10

I blogged last year about our Christmas traditions, about creating memories and making our own traditions as a family.  Including a little of mine and MadDads best Christmas’s and sprinkling some new things, some things that are unique to us and to our life.  I want these tradition to cement the boys memories of their Christmas’s past and lead them happily in to their Christmas’s of their future. We have our advent stocking activities each day, which is wonderful and we also make sure that we have done all the shopping, wrapping and running around by Christmas Eve and we make a big day of it.   The Christmas Eve Elves more »


A Pause in Advent – Peace 6

n. The absence of war or other hostilities. An agreement or a treaty to end hostilities. Freedom from quarrels and disagreement; harmonious relations: living in peace with each other. Public security and order: was arrested for disturbing the peace. Inner contentment; serenity: peace of mind. I hasve been trying hard this week to find peace in what is a very busy and hectic world at the moment.  I still dont have the conservatory roof fixed or a resolution with the insurance company on the electrical items, but we will get there. I have spend every spare moment doing something, including baking cakes for school parties, attending carol services and helping mum more »


Since when is this acceptable? 18

The weather this week has been terrible, we still have snow despite the thaw and one of the issues the milder weather has brought has been the hazard of compacted snow with an extremely slippery surface.  In fact it is like walking on wet glass, well what I think walking on wet glass would feel. MadDad and other neighbours have been clearing driveways and the road during the snow regardless of the fact that many people seem to think that there is an issue over being sued if someone falls.  This does appear to be something of an urban legend and I have not been able to find a single instance more »


Christmas Decoration Tour 2010 12

I adore Christmas and all that is brings, partly maybe due to being a Christmas baby (it is my birthday on 20 December).  So I love decorations and one of the great things about getting older is that I am no longer hung up on everything needing to be matching and co-ordinating.  In fact I am embracing my inner child and we have even gone for coloured lights on a white tree in the dinning room. I love the fact that we have been collecting decorations each year and adding to them, they carry so many memories, so much of our history as a family.  Yep I am a sentimental old more »


Not so gingery gingerbread 21

Last year we decorated gingerbread houses, but the boys do not like the taste of gingerbread so it was a waste in the long run, although it was fun. So this year we decided to make our own gingerbread men and decorate them instead, so I set about finding a not so gingery gingerbread recipe.  I couldn’t find one that was just perfect, so I adapted one until it was what we needed.   Ingredients 350g / 12oz plain flour 175g / 6oz light soft brown sugar 100g / 4oz butter 1 medium egg 4 tablespoons of golden syrup 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda ½ teaspoon of ground ginger ½ teaspoon more »


An alternative to salt dough ornaments 18

  We usually make salt dough ornaments at this timeof the year, but spurred on my Chris at Thinly Spread I decided to give cornflour dough a try.  However, typically I didn’t have the ingredients on hand to make her recipes so made up my own. Ingredients 2 cups salt two thirds of a  cup of water 2 cups cornflour Half cup water Method Mix 2 cups of salt with two thirds of a  cup of water in a pan and stir constantly over medium heat for 2-3 minutes until bubbles appear. Remove from heat and immediately add to 2 cups cornflour and half a cold water  and mix quickly to more »


A Pause in Advent Joy 7

joy / joi/ n. a feeling of great pleasure and happiness: tears of joy the joy of being alive. a thing that causes joy: the joys of Manhattan. v. [intr.] poetic/lit. rejoice: I felt shame that I had ever joyed in his discomfiture or pain. There is a real feeling of joy over adversity at the moment in the mad house.  We are all working hard to enjoy and make the most of advent, without making it a chore.  We are trying to find joy in the small things in our life, yes we have had enough of the snow, but it does make things feel clean and bright. We had more »


Why the boys nativities mean so much to me 7

Even though last week was snowed off for the school, the children and the teachers have worked really hard to ensure that the nativities took place this week. Maxi’s was first on Thursday and it was a Snowman at Sunset and yes, I cried.  Maxi doesn’t do dressing up, so as a narrator he only had to war his hat, scarf and gloves.  It was a wonderful show and I have to say there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when one of his little classmates did a solo at the end.   Friday saw Mini’s show, which was whoops a daisy angel, hats off to the teachers on this more »


Nativity Scenes 11

  I am a great lover of nativity scenes and grew up with the lower image in my mums house.  When Maxi was born she gifted me it.  I love it, so do the boys, but as it is china they can not play with it and make up their own story, so we made our own version out of loo rolls. We had so much fun, but no images of us making them, as I was far too involved with the boys, glue, ribbon, scissors and lots and lots of fabric scraps! Oh and I went to Maxi’s Nativity yesterday and Mini’s is today, so I will be back with more »


The Gallery – White 15

We are still covered in snow and it is snowing again this morning.  Yes I am sure that there will be lots of artistic pictures out there of white stuff, but we have been living with this white stuff for far too long and it is starting to get silly.       The annual residents association “carols on the green” has had to be moved to the village church instead of our estate green tonight due to the amount of snow. So world, please can we have a thaw and get rid of the masses of snow, pretty please.


A Pause in Advent – Peace 12

We had a pretty peaceful start to this week, as we had so much snow that the school was closed all week and MadDad struggled to get in to work.   We tried to make the most of each others company and use the time wisely. We really all enjoyed putting up our Christmas tree and inside decorations (there is far too much snow for the outside ones yet) and took pleasure in the simple things like hot chocolate and marshmallows. But the greatest lesson for me this week has been that peace is not something that is always an external thing.  We had a nightmare on Saturday morning when the heavy more »


It’s snow joke 23

I haven’t been online a lot this week. Here in our little corner of the North East coast we have felt the full force of the weather that has hit Britain this week. We have had masses of snow and the boys school has been shut all week. So I have taken the opportunity to spend some quality time with mini and maxi and we have crafted, baked, read, made up stories, put up the Christmas decorations and enjoyed each others company.   MadDad has been working from home and has also spent a lot of time clearing paths and making sure the house is as safe and secure as it more »


Our advent activities, one mum creating traditions 12

As you probably gathered I believe in the wonder and joys of Christmas and want to welcome my boys to the warm arms of tradition.  I want them to relish advent each year, which is why I made our advent stockings last year. I wanted to make each day special in its own right, without is just being a countdown to Christmas day itself.   Write and post your letter to Father Christmas Help ice the Christmas cake Make Christmas cards Make shapes with the cookie cutters and playdough Make Christmas shrinky dinks Make paper snowflakes Go to Carol Service Colour in some Christmas pictures Make some Christmas fairy cakes Make paper chains more »