Monthly Archives: March 2011


Who’s homework is it anyway 14

have never shied away from the fact that I am not a fan of homework for infant and primary children and told both the boys teachers when I met them and they understand that the boys only tend to do homework if it lights their fire or pushes their button, which isn’t very often. They are 4 and 6 and there are much better things they can spend their time doing other than homework.


Is his best just not good enough? 19

arriet over at Plan B, wrote a really interesting post about how far would you trust your husband and as with all great posts, it really got me thinking. She referenced the post from The Guardian I about being a foundation parent and the fact that woman remain the foundation parent in the household and how this is very 1950’s.

The reason it got me thinking is how very different to my life it is. I was a stay at home mom when the boys were small. we made sacrifices and returned back to our native North East of England so that I could remain at home and be the boys primary care giver and influencer and look after them during the day, however, this has never meant that I am in sole charge of them and the house and when MadDad steps back through that door he takes on more than his fair share of the work.


Trying to clean like my Grandma 10

Otherwise know as the P&G 1930’s housewife challenge. I along with other bloggers have been set the challenge to try a day in the life of a 1930’s family. We decided to take this on and use it as a learning tool for the boys.

Cleaning in the 1930’s

I was supplied with some white vinegar, a spray bottle, lemon, bicarb, household soap and cloths. I have to say that I already have all of this in my cleaning cupboard and use it all and have taken to buying white vinegar by the 5 litres from the cash and carry. So I did not find this part of the challenge too hard, except the fact that I missed my washing up liquid and my dishwasher. The hardest part was boiling the hot water to clean everything.

Laundry in the 1930’s


Learning through play 10

Learning through play, is there any other way when children are small?  For me the answer would be a resounding no.  My boys love to play and whats more I love to play with them. Throughout their lives I have been keen to encourage independent play.  Here they are counting their pennies in their jar.  I didn’t ask them to do this, but they both love money and they love counting.  So we talked about how many pence in a pound, the different shapes and sizes on money and also the fact that the queen was on all coins.  We then used the coins like tiddliwinks.  For me this was a more »


A Pause in Lent, giving away, not giving up 12

This weekend was Maxi’s birthday party, which was his first proper party, by which I mean not a tea party at home with just a few people. There are three children in his class with birthdays all in the same week, so we decided to have a joint party in the local civic centre, with a disco for all three.


A lump in my throat 12

he shops are filling up with card for Mothers Day and each time I see or hear it mentioned it brings a lump to my throat. For the first time in my entire life, I do not have a mother to celebrate on Mothers Day and that makes me unbelievably sad. I want the world to stop and take notice of me. I didn’t want to my my mother in law a card, although today I did and to give MadDad his due, he said thank you and then made me cry by saying he understood just how hard that was for me to do.


Now we are Six 11

Today you turn six.  It seems like somehow we have blinked and all of a sudden I have a six year old.  We have been blessed to watch you grow and develop.  To get small glimpses to the man you may become. I look at you with wonder at the way you view the world, the ever generous friend, always there to hold someones hand or give them a pat on the back and words of congratulations. Maxi’s last sleep as a five year old You are an amazing big brother, who encourages Mini ever step of the way.  You give him wonderful kisses and cuddles, but boy the two of more »


Everything is so easy if you are 4 year old 9

Maxi was born in Reading, so he has chosen Reading football team as his and was super excited this weekend by the fact that they were still in the FA cup, but also really upset to find out that he couldn’t watch them on TV (as they were not being shown playing), so we listened to the match on the radio. When Manchester City sored the goal, Maxi got pretty upset.  So MadDad tried to explain the ranking system and said that Manchester City were in a higher league and were possibly the richest football club in England at the moment and this is the conversation that sprung from there.   more »


How do you perceive me? the one word Meme 28

Michelle from Mummy from the Heart has tagged me in her one word meme  “how do you perceive me?”  I have thought long and hard about doing this over the weekend, as I am not one who looks for other people to validate my opinions of myself, much less the online and mummy blogging community.  Reading that back it might sound a little harsh, but it isn’t meant too, it is just the fact that I place a lot of value on the people who know me opinion and I have also had a recent experience of someone commenting on my blog, who felt that I came across as a blagger, more »


A pause in Lent, Easter for children 5

Today is the first Sunday in Lent and we have been making a big effort here to keep quieter and not shout at each other, which is working in the most. We have spent the weekend enjoying each others company and just chilling out, which is something we really have needed to do. Last Year my dear friend Angela from Tracing Rainbows wrote a wonderful letter for my boys explaining Easter for them and it is such a wonderful letter that I would like to share it with you (I am sure that Angela wont mind).  I re-read it to the boys this lunchtime and they are so looking forward to more »


Discussing the Bad Stuff 9

The world seems to have had more than it’s fair share of disasters over the last couple of years, the floods in India, situation in Haiti, the earthquake in Christchurch and then overnight the massive earthquake in Japan. It seems to be a pretty scary time to live at the moment. I am all too aware of how tragedy can affect children, we have experienced enough in our family and my boys have been exposed to illness and death from an early age, but this does not mean that I no longer feel the need to shield them from the hardest realities of the news. I find the news footage shocking more »


Giving up shouting for Lent 4

We have talked a lot in The Mad House about what Lent is and what it means and last year we discussed the fact that Lent is about repentance, this year I am looking at reinforcing that message with them. I tried giving up shouting last year, but wasn’t too successful, so I am going to give it another go again this year, in fact we are all going to try and keep the volume turned down.   One other thing we are going to do is use the time to give to people less fortunate than us.  I want the boys to have an understanding of Charity and Red Nose more »


In my heart and in my house 11

One of the hardest things for me about clearing out mums house if that I have had the urge to keep everything.  Even the things that I used to think were tat and rubbish.  My heart associates all these things with my mum. Finally we are getting to the end of the long journey of clearing the house of over 35 years of detritus and my niece will be moving in to continue the tradition of the house being a family home. She will be keeping a lot of the furniture and other stuff, so we haven’t had to deal with clearing everything, but it has been an experience I am more »


No need for the Sunday papers 8

I hope you have had a good week.  This last week was out first back at school after the half term and I have really missed my boys, but I have also needed the quiet time, as I have had tonsillitis too.   We have been getting back in to routine and Mini was wonderful at swimming this week, picking up his stage 2 and 5 meters badges.  He enjoys it so much more since we got him some prescription goggles. Sit down and let me introduce you to some fantastic blogs. Picture of me and my brother hanging on the wall, I just can not bring myself to take down This more »


Encouraging boy’s to write 16

My boys are like chalk and cheese, as I have said before.  Maxi was writing by age three, whereas, Mini really doesn’t enjoy mark making or writing.  He is a perfectionist and gets upset that it doesn’t look like he thinks it is supposed to, this isn’t helping in mu opinion with the school teaching cursive handwriting from Reception. Up to now this hasn’t been an issue for him, but it is really starting to get him down and also to hold him back.  Why you ask?  Well he knows all his letters and sounds and is a great phonic reader, but he is so reticent about writing that the school more »


Proud, you bet I am 11

I read somewhere and for the life of me I can not remember where something about parents who’s children eat everything shouldn’t be smug.  Why?  Why can I let people know about the crap sides of my life, but not the good things? I am a proud mum and yes I am somewhat smug, my children are good eaters.  Is it down to me, yes it probably is.  I am happy to say that out loud.  My boys eat mostly everything I put in front of them nowadays, yes the do have foods they don’t like, but they are both happy to try new foods and are not in the slightest more »