Real Housewife of Suffolk County

Friday, 30 January 2015

#littleloves | 30/01/2015


Despite selling my early bird ticket I have been looking at the Speakers for this years Britmums Live conference. It looks amazing and really exciting. Carol Smilie as a speaker on the Friday is super exciting. I have such fond memories of watching her on Changing Rooms when I was a teen. In fact that show was one of the last times I can remember us being a happy family until my dad left so it's quite special.
And, how good does she look?!


I stayed at my mums on Friday whilst my brother was home. It's become a little tradition now that I go and stay over and the 3 of us will watch a film when he is back. We chose Let's Be Cops, which was ok. It made me laugh in parts but was probably a little bit long.
I also watched a film called Little Children on Saturday. Kate Winslet is in it, and I LOVE her. The film was ok, again a bit long and could have been a bit more...I don't know...exciting or something. It had two storylines going on and I didn't feel like they merged well enough together to warrant being in the same film.
I've also been watching a lot of Impractical Jokers. The US version because the UK version was awful. I know I've mentioned it before but I am OBSESSED with it. It's one of the only programmes that has me laughing out loud....VERY loud.


 I bought some new boots and a new scarf this week. I am yet to wear them but I'm rather excited about them. The scarf is from Warehouse and is a big blanket scarf in a coral and grey leopard print. Soooo lovely. And the boots were from TKMaxx and are a kind of biker/cowboy style.


I am obsessively listening to Sam Smith at the moment. I have his album on in the car constantly and his songs playing on my phone via Spotify. My favourite at the moment being Life Support, closely followed my Leave Your Lover.


Purchases. See "wore" above. (Ok, totally cheating there)

And Lastly...

Yuk, it snowed here a bit yesterday. Not for long but enough to lay a little and to make it super icy. I hate it but Harry hasn't seen snow properly before....well enough to remember as he was just a baby when it last snowed, so it was nice to see his reaction.
Charles had the class mascot for 3 days so it was a great excuse to take a photo of him with the snow (although not outside of course) and to add a Frozen theme to the photo for the diary, which I'm sure Charles' class friends appreciated.


Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Waking Up and Knowing

Being woken up by the boys at 6am this morning wasn't wonderful. I was still really tired and it felt like it was just 3am. I tried to get them to go back to sleep but something in me told me to get up and start my day.
We went downstairs, the boys had breakfast, I had coffee and wrote a blog post whilst they watched Mr Men on Channel 5 and Charles went to get ready for school.
I would usually rush up after him but instead I spent 10 minutes having a play fight with Harry. When I say play fight it was more me running away from him whilst he tried to pull my pyjama trousers down!

We eventually headed upstairs, I sent my later than usual morning message to a friend and got ready for the school run.
I'm not sure what it was, but something felt good. I had this feeling that today was going to be a good day.
I decided to keep myself away from the laptop in the morning and instead played a card game with Harry (he cheated!), we cuddled watching Netflix (or Fletnix as we renamed it) and he helped me sort through the washing and clothes for the tumble dryer.
Since his behaviour switch at Christmas I have enjoyed being with him so much. I feel a little obsessed with him, and although I have this fear of him turning into the angry child he was I also am desperate to play catch up and want to create so many fun and happy memories to paint over the not so happy ones from last year.

We eventually got him to preschool...I say eventually because we keep having so much fun that we lose track of time! And I went to Morrisons. Because that's another thing, this morning I decided that today was a good day to by myself some flowers. I just had this feeling that today I deserved a treat, not to cheer myself up, I didn't need them for that.
I think it was more to say "I'm proud of you". Because, it's ok to feel like that. And it is ok to pat yourself on the back and to say "you are awesome".
I so often tell myself how awful I am, how I am bad at everything. How I am lazy, don't put in enough effort, unaware and so on. But we all need that push, and why not give that push to ourselves? If we rely on others to notice the good things we do then we could be waiting a while! Because a lot of things go unnoticed, our everyday tasks and so on. But why not keep a mental list of everything you do well? I've learnt to do that and although I'm not in the habit of doing it I am trying.
So, I bought myself some flowers to say "Hey. You are quite brilliant (sometimes)".

I got back in the car, after paying for the flowers and accidentally buying a pack of 3 Ferrero Rocher (because I didn't eat enough of them at Christmas and am ashamed of myself for that) and just sat for a little bit. The sun was quite warm, it was bright and sunny. You'd be forgiven for thinking it was April and not January.
I turned the engine on and turned up the volume as my Sam Smith album played.
I sat there and just felt happy. And that is quite an odd emotional for me, and sometimes I struggle with feeling that. I find it quite overwhelming. But I embraced it and let it take over. And I realised I was smiling. To myself. Looking a bit bizarre to the people sat in the cafe by the window I expect.

I drove home, singing along probably louder than I should have been to my Sam Smith album (wow he hits some high notes...and wow, I clearly don't!) and I realised I was still smiling. And I was still feeling good.
And when I got home I looked at my phone and had the confirmation that something good was going to happen today. Oh, here comes the annoying vague bit of "can't mention it yet" style news. But, I not only had a feeling of acceptance and self worth, but also that feeling of pride and that realisation that although there are many cracks to this shell, inside there is someone who is strong, who has courage and is willing to put herself out there and to say "hey. I want to do this, can we make that happen?".
To open yourself up like that requires some kind of a positive way. And, there's that thing of 'if you don't ask, you won't get' or 'how will you know if you never try' or 'what's the worst that can happen?'.

Next Tuesday I have a meeting for something else which excites me and makes me nervous. But again it's that confirmation that I can do these things and that opportunities happen, you just sometimes have to chase them yourself.

My motto for 2015:

5 Winter Home Emergencies You Can Avoid Right Now | Guest Post

Winter can be a magical time of the year, but it can also cause havoc for your home. Unless you are adequately prepared, there are all kinds of winter home emergencies that can crop up. Below you’ll discover the top five emergencies you can avoid right now.
1. Broken down boiler
While the British weather may be known for its unpredictability, for several months of the year you can usually get away without using a lot of heating. While this saves you a lot of money, unfortunately it can cause problems when you start to use the boiler more in the colder weather. Many homeowners don’t discover until it’s too late that their boiler has packed up.
Winter is the most common time for boilers to break down. To avoid this it is important that you have the boiler serviced by a qualified engineer before winter kicks in. It is really important you check that the engineer has become gas safe registered with Options Skills or any other respected training company.  
2. Frozen pipes
The cold weather can cause the water pipes in the home to freeze and eventually burst if they aren’t treated. Keeping the home as warm as possible will help to prevent this problem. As featured on the CDC website, it is worth weather-stripping doors and windows. If you are going away it is also helpful to have the heating set to low so that it keeps the house warm while you are gone.
3. Cold radiators
Cold radiators are another common home winter emergency. If your house isn’t warming up despite the heating being on, it could be down to a problem with the radiators. The good news is this is usually a very simple problem to fix. You will need to bleed the radiators to ensure any trapped air is released. If this doesn’t work, clean the radiators thoroughly.
4. Blocked drains
Another problem the cold weather brings is blocked drains. This can lead to bigger problems if not sorted out right away. It is often caused by pouring fats and grease down the drain. The cold weather causes the liquids to solidify and cause a blockage which can be difficult to get rid of. To prevent it all you need to do is ensure you don’t pour anything you shouldn’t down the drain.
5. Dripping taps
Dripping taps may seem like a mere sign of annoyance rather than an emergency. However, if they aren’t fixed in winter they could lead to more serious problems. As mentioned on the South Staffs Water website, dripping taps can lead to frozen and burst pipes. Be sure to get them fixed as soon as you can to prevent the problem.
Overall there are many home emergencies that can crop up in winter. The above are the most common problems you could be facing if you aren’t properly prepared. If you follow the advice given, you should be able to avoid and quickly treat any emergencies that do crop up.    

The Journey to Somerset

I have really fond memories of the journey to Somerset as a child. It's quite long, taking us around 6 hours so we would have stops planned at service stations and even at attractions on the way down to break down the journey.
My brother would sit on the right hand side and at one point would tell us that went past. He would tell us the make, model and engine size of each car. It wasn't at all annoying....
But now I look back and see that actually, it was quite cute. My parents would let us buy magazines for the journey and whereas I would pick the typical magazines aimed at children featuring interviews with Take That, 3T, Adam Rickett and the Backstreet Boys, he would instead buy copies of Autotrader. He was definitely one of the youngest purchasers and readers of that publication I'm sure!!

My parents would make the back of the car as comfortable as possible. You didn't need booster seats back then (wow that makes me feel old!) so we were able to spread out. We would put our feet up on the bags and boxes that our parents placed behind their seat so basically we had a bed in the back of the car.

We would have games to try and get lorry drivers to wave and smile at us by staring at them with sad faces as we drove past. The majority of them seemed to feel sorry for us and would wave, which then resulted in a big smile and a wave for us.....and one point of course!

When we has Game Boys they would be our entertainment of choice, as well as our cassette players with a built in Tetris game.
It all seems so old skool now, looking back at how chunky these devices were, and how many additional pieces you would have to take to accompany them.
Nowadays it seems so simple. A tablet, and headphones. With music and apps loaded onto the device and no addition cds, discs, cassettes or cartridges needed whatsoever (other than a charger of course. I'm pretty sure batteries in Game Boys and our Tetris/Cassette game lasted a lot lot longer and would pretty much last us the whole week.

In April we are making the journey to Somerset again, except this time I won't be in the back seat. Instead I will be the driver, which is somewhat scary and also a complete wake up call that I am now the adult and no longer able to sit in the back and read about how I could one day become Mark Owen's wife.
This time I will be preparing my own children for that journey. And thanking the inventors of tablets due their space saving abilities with no need to have magazines ripped all over the back of the car.

I was always very anti-tablets for children. But my brother and my mum bought one for Charles for his 5th birthday. This is mainly because my brother introduced Charles to Angry Birds via his iPad and, as most people seem to be once they play this, Charles was hooked!
The deal was always to limit Charles' time on the tablet, and to also introduce educational and creative games also.

Having recently been made aware of the free to download POP ArtPad app in which children can create drawings and edit photos in all kinds of interesting and amusing ways. Little artists can choose from over a hundred hilarious themed stickers - including hairstyles, fancy dress, pets, animal faces and even practical jokes!
Children can also share their masterpiece with friends and family via email, and can even submit their creation for a chance to see their artwork on the POP TV channel! 

Do you have any apps essential for a 5 year old?  

Monday, 26 January 2015

Living Arrows 2015 | 4/52

This weeks photo is awful. I hold my hands up and admit that. Last week was tough with Charles being sent home from school poorly and Harry had his preschool vaccinations which went well until he got a temperature and felt poorly towards the end of the week.
However, I'm not going to fail at this project and despite it being a pants photo it actually means a lot.
We went out for a meal last week, and a lot of the time I do kind of dread going out for a meal with the boys as they do get bored and might play up if they have been waiting around for a long time, and they also don't tend to eat much of their food!
We decided to just order Harry a bowl of rice. That was all he wanted and rather than force him to eat chicken and vegetables as well we followed his lead.
He was so well behaved. Ate so much of the rice. And was generally just wonderful wonderful company.
So, pants photo, but knowing that whenever I look at it I will have this happy memory of a lovely lunch with him is worth it.

Living Arrows
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