Thursday, 18 September 2014

School starter - Two weeks later

So the boy started school nearly two week ago so how's it going?

He's not full time yet but he is loving it! He bounds in without a care in the world. I try and walk or scoot with him every day. Yes I use my scooter too and it's great, I can get home in 10 minutes rather than 20 but I digress.

The first week he was doing a couple of hours in the afternoon only. He wouldn't really open up about what he had done at school. I had the usual 'don't know' when I tried to coax answers from him. His sleep also suffered with him waking in the night and creeping into our bed for the first time in years. This meant we had a couple of days of serious meltdowns and I'm not sure if it was because he was tired or due to the change in routine.

This week he is doing morning and lunch and he is excited that he gets to stay for lunch with his friends who stay for the whole day. He was a little concerned that he accidentally threw away a spoon when he cleared away his tray and didn't know what to do. He thought father Christmas wouldn't bring him any presents. (He might not!)

He is starting to talk more about what he has done at school, we went and fed the animals which included geese and he randomly came out with 'we played duck, duck, goose today.' We were then able to have a conversation about his PE lesson.

I've also found out first hand why my sister said buy lots of t-shirts! I have had to try and rescue 4 polo shirts from 7 half days at school! The stains are marker pen, felt tip pen, biro, dinner of some kind, general dirt which looks like he has commando crawled across the field for an hour. This was my weapon - all of them at the same time!



I can report back that I have saved three of the shirts with the marker pen beating me!

Talking of stains - any idea how we sort this? The boys brand new sparkly shoes looked new no longer after only 2 hours at school. He saw me polishing them and this is the result...


If you have any tips on how we rescue the husbands nearly new CAT boots please share them with me.


Bournemouth Airfestival - Sunday

This year marked the 7th free air festival in Bournemouth. I had planned to head down on the first day with the boys but I didn't have time as I was busy preparing for our trip to the Dorset steam fair. We were lucky enough to see the red arrows fly over on the Saturday whilst we were at the steam fair and the boys and I loved it! I knew I had to take the boys to the seafront for the final day on Sunday.

We arrived at the seafront with a few minutes spare before the first planes took the skies. We took our position and watched as the red arrows entertained us. The boy loved the coloured smoke and the young one kept pointing at the planes. Excuse the smudge on the photo it's tricky trying to take a shot with one hand and holding a wriggly toddler with the other.

With the beach in our sights the boy wanted to get onto the sands so we made our way to the lift car - the cliff paths were extremely busy so I needed to be sure I wouldn't get separated from the boy. As we waited our turn we watched the pirate display and the boy took a few photo's  - I love the pic he took through the fence.

Once on the sand he built his own radar - the boy is obsessed with the radar at Calshot and likes to know EVERYTHING about it and why it's there.

We saw the army tank and went to explore which meant we were lucky enough to see the marines as they came a shore. The boy wasn't keen on trying on any of the equipment or sitting in the tank - he just wanted to go in the sea. We shoe horned ourselves onto the beach and I found a small spot on unused beach close to the water. I say small it was the size of a picnic blanket with people all around us.

I wanted to be close to the water so I could see him and be able to get his attention if the young one was sleeping and oh boy what a view even without any planes to watch.

I loved having the music and commentary to accompany the festival. I felt very patriotic as I was stood next to a tank watching a bomber go passed with appropriate music - if I had a flag I would have waved it!

What a way to finish with a heritage formation from Miss Dermeanour, Canberra and the Sea Vixen.



I must admit I was a bit nervous about taking the boys on my own as the husband had to get ready for work he couldn't come with us. I decided to catch the train as the thought of the traffic was enough to put me off going. The train took about 15 minutes cost £7.20 and was really easy so I'll definitely be catching he train in again! We had a lovely day and will be back for next years event making sure we see the dusk display too.

Next year the show will run from 20th August - 23rd August but if you can't wait that long check out my short video below:



Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Monday, 15 September 2014

Pick your own

Something I wanted to do with the boys all summer was pick your own. We have been super busy and never got round to it .... until the end of August. Being the end of the season all the strawberries were gone and so were the blueberries but the farmer said we might get lucky with a few raspberries if we hunted for them.

Over grown raspberries
Where have they gone?


We went with my sister and my niece who were all up for the challenge!


 Sssh don't tell the farmer - J started eating them as we were going along






With a full punnet between us it was a great way to spend an hour and all for a fiver - we will be back next year - before all the strawberries go!



Sunday, 14 September 2014

Review - Trunki PuddlePak

Have you seen the brilliant PaddlePak's from trunki? They are water resistance so are designed to keep the contents dry if it's raining or to keep you dry if you use them for swimming.

They also look great and have a fun appeal whether you are 4 or ahem 30 something. 






Our PaddlePak arrived when it was raining so I put it to use right away as my new mum bag! I couldn't put too much in as the boy wanted to wear it. The straps have reflective strips and a sunglasses holder which hold them well. The straps are a good length meaning that both the boy and I can wear the bag with no problems for either of us.

You close the bag by folding over the top three times and fastening with a clever buckle which pulls apart when it is under pressure. You might think this is not needed but you can be sure that a least one child will try and out it around their neck so I love this feature. It works too as the husband found out when he tried to attach it to the pushchair hanging by this loop - the buckle opened so it does work.

There is a neoprene pocket 'tail' which is ideal to store, keys, money or a phone. The bag is extremely lightweight and has a breathable back. 

The bag holds a fair amount and there is also a separate pocket inside to keep snacks/ nappies etc dry from wet swimming stuff in the bottom of the bag. We put all our wet costumes/ shorts in the bottom (not wrapped in the towels) and the boys towels. The dry nappy and snacks stayed dry and so did the boys back. 

I left it overnight to really test the bag and in the morning there was only a small patch that was slightly damp - impressive! When the boy put the bag down in a puddle it didn't penetrate the bag either. 

It was my bag of choice for a recent trip to the sandy beach. It had plenty of space inside for drinks and snacks/ spare clothes and the tail pocket for my cash and phone meant I only needed to take one bag.

The sand stayed out, I stayed happy and the boys glasses stayed safe when he wasn't wearing them.



The bags come in lots of different styles and colours including nemo, a blow fish and one of my favourite the lobster. All the designs can be found on their website and for your chance to win one check out the following blogs which are running competitions to win one of your own. 

U me and the kids
ET speaks form home
A strong coffee
The mummy adventure
Family Fever
In the playroom
Chelsea Mamma

Disclosure: We were sent a shark PaddlePak for the purpose of the review but all opinions are honest and my own.