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The Kids Are At School. Who Am I?

The kids are back at school! I no longer have children at home. Whilst this makes me feel sad, I’m also feeling free and less stressed.

Being able to work 5 days of the week has made me feel more human. I haven’t had my hair cut since last November so I’m taking the opportunity to do it guilt free whilst the girls are at school and on a day that I don’t need to be working on the admin, sometimes those things can wait.

All three girls are exhausted come Fridays though so planning one activity a weekend is our limit at the moment. Whilst they love relaxing in their pj’s on a Saturday morning, they love being on an adventure too. It’s nice because having more time to work in the week also means that I’m not thinking about work at the weekends and getting stressed with the kids if I need to check emails. Believe me when I say that this is refreshing!

We usually do bike rides, dog walks (we need to start making the most of the beach and national trust again at this time of the year) and very recently I had the opportunity to take them back to Weymouth Sealife Centre for their CBBC’s The Deep themed event. This was a lot of fun because the kids had to go around and solve the deep sea mysteries. It kept them entertained on the way around and there were a lot of cheers. I realise now that The Sealife Centre actually do different themes so there’s different things to do on each visit. A reason to visit more often. I still didn’t manage to get to the beach after but it was raining at the end of the day and we were exhausted again. The kids did enjoy buying keyrings in the gift shop instead though and collecting more badges. Oh there’s a pop badge swap going on this coming weekend! There’s info over on the Sealife website.

We need to find new bike ride adventures to go on. There must be a local bike group I could join? Riding for hours through the mud and Autumn leaves. THE BEST!

We also love swimming at our local BHLive Active gym with a treat of soft play and drinks after.

With all three at school, Matilda seems to have grown up that little bit more. She is still very much a mummy’s girl but I find it odd that I’m getting me back. Not that I know who ME is these days. I think most parents find that they are on a journey of self-discovery at this point in their life. I have had almost 9 years of juggling children and work so i have no idea how i feel at the moment.

It does feel overwhelming, there’s so much I want to do. I keep promising that I will start my vlog series, especially when i can spend a bit of time making my face and hair look pretty. hehe.

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Weymouth Sealife Centre – A Great Day Out!

Over the summer break, we tried to do as much as we could in between both Dave and I working. We were keen to do things that were different and memorable. Camping at different places and a couple of trips to see family in Guernsey have been really wonderful but we were thrilled to also cram in a day trip to one of our favourite places; Weymouth. We haven’t been to Weymouth Sealife Centre in years and I had heard from friends that it had changed so when Liz Lean PR invited me and my family to visit and meet the Octonauts and meet Kwaazi we jumped at the chance. Matilda is a huge fan! I noticed that this was only on until the end of August but now they have CBBC’s most daring family of the deep sea. LOOK HERE

A 40 minutes drive for me and the kids as Dave was working, and although I was really anxious about doing this alone, i knew some friends would be there to say Hi too and we had the satnav!

We were blessed with beautiful weather and a really lovely drive.

As soon as we arrived, we were given some explorers books to check off as we went around. After each section, the kids stamped their books to say that they had been to that section.There are some odd looking fish! fascinated though, the kids got straight to it reading all the facts on the boards as we went around. The only thing we could have done with was a map!

If you go, you have to take some time out to let the kids run around and play at the Caribbean Cove whilst you sit on the grass and grab a costa. It totally restored my energy levels. The kids loved this new area!

This kind of day out is an all day out with a picnic. I loved that there were plenty of picnic areas dotted around. I wish we made the effort to head down to the beach at the end of day because it’s only across the road. A fish and chip supper would have been perfect! We were all so tired from such a fun day and I was worried how i would cope with the tired kids on my own – seriously I panic too much as it’s not like my kids are really bad!

When I asked my girls what they LOVED about the day they said the new Ideas Zone. I have to agree! Basically, the kids put on their lab coats and picked up a toy turtle and then put it under machines to X-ray. Here they got to name them and find out what was wrong with them. It was then their job to nurse them back to good health. The kids absolutely loved that part and we could have easily spent ages in here!

The kids also loved the Splash Zone. I am so glad I packed their swim wear and a towel.

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Family Camping. Why it’s great!

Since having children of our own, we have tried to have several staycations where the girls will make amazing memories and as we all have a love for nature and the great outdoors, we seem to have embarked on camping A LOT.

Camping has been THE holiday where we all seem to laugh out loud, have a break from technology and ‘rough it up’. We usually camp without electric and we usually pick those fields without any wifi or signal. Although this is horrible at first, we soon seem to slip into not knowing the time or what is going on in the world of social media. We even misplace our phones in our tent and not seem to care.

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Our camping trips have seen us go to Trewan Hall in Cornwall, Golden Cap, Nordern Farm, Rosewall, and  Lymington. Picking a good campsite isn’t easy but we have a criteria to follow now. Nice showers and toilets, on site shop, pub within walking distance, crabbing or rock pooling close-by, dog-friendly, firepits allowed. Having a nice shower and toilet unit is important because no matter how much you are ‘roughing it up’, the only piece of sanity you have is the decent shower that you will get first thing after a rubbish nights sleep.

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My girls adore camping so much and over the years we have added to our camping equipment. Our tent is a pretty good size but we got this tent at an amazingly reduced price so it was a BARGAIN. There’s plenty of places to hunt for a decent tent. We can fit 6 camp beds in a row in the bedroom with our luggage inside and under the beds too. The living room space always fits in all the adults that we usually camp with, which is about 8 of us and all their children. We usually have a games corner, colouring corner, a coat corner and we fit in all the adults chairs. Ours being wonderfully spacious means that we often play host to the group so we can all sit around dry and snug indoors and chat to each other. I now make sure that I take a dustpan and brush because after daily footfall on a large scale and food being consumed, when you shake out the carpet on packing up day we are usually greeted by a three-course dinner – well, usually crushed crisps and bread crumbs.

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I think investing in a good tent, that will stand the test of high winds and rain is important. British weather is a nightmare and when you plan a camping trip in the summer you can bet that it will rain and blow a gale!

We started our camping trip with blow up beds but we found these annoying and they would deflate quickly. We have since invested in camping beds but, although these are better, they are still not comfy. Me and the kids hate sleeping in sleeping bags so we take our duvets which feels much nicer, but our recent trip found me and the girls freezing! No onesies this time and I think they make a difference. I would suggest you add these to your list!

An essential that I would suggest to any first-time camper reading this is a wee bucket – yep! When your child needs a wee at 1am and it’s cold and dark outside and a trek to the toilet, it’s the last trip you want to be making so we take a bucket that we place in the side part of our tent – it’s actually the toilet room and my kids wee in a bucket. I’m guessing there’s something better out there for this but we use a bright orange bucket and we remain warm and dry. Although if they need a poo in the night then I will aslways send hubby.

We have a porch on our tent that we use for the cooking area. A double gas stove, a kettle and a big cool box is essential. Breakfasts are usually bacon, egg or sausage baps and lunch is usually pasta or pot noodles and dinner is bbq/pasta/mince dish. We usually do the cooking as a group because we find that we all eat the same things. This is so much easier. Although someone needs to forget bringing the crips! My waistline does not appreciate crisps and it’s my weakness especially after consuming the essential red wine.

Don’t forget to take a washing bowl so you can go and do all your washing up – i forgot this first time around and it was a pain!

We have a couple more camping trips planned this summer but as yet we are not sure where to go. It would be so nice to have more car space so we can take the bikes with us too.  I like staying active whilst camping and we do find ourselves on long walks which is lovely. I try and take my running stuff too but it’s not always easy getting up and out for a run when on a family camping trip. It does make you feel really good once you have done a run though, especially when living off naughty food.

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Our favourite sites have been Rosewall, Trewan Hall and Golden Cap so far. It’s an amazing way to bond as a family and appreciate home a little more!

 

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I have no idea how people do the 500 calorie diet

The Diet…

The calorie counting has had its plus and minuses if i’m honest. When I do it, it’s a real eye opener and I have no idea how people do this 500 calorie diet. I can’t seem to go under 1200 calories! On those days I don’t add data to the calorie counting app I feel like I’m free and I don’t eat as much. How does that work?! Anyway i’m 4lbs lighter than last year which is better than 4lbs on I guess.

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Since the new year, I have run a lot. I’m talking 11 miles every weekend and dancing and gym and school runs (seriously I’m counting everything).

I just need to find someone to serve me my healthy snacks and meals – simple!

The House Move …

So, we sold at the end of November and we also bought at the end of November. We are currently so close to exchanging that I’m constantly checking my emails for the solicitor to announce the much-needed news. Argh it’s driving me insane. As both my husband and I work all week we have been doing clear outs, tip runs and packing on weekends around birthday parties and family outings. There is no method to the madness at all. Just tip everything we don’t want and box everything we are keeping. We still have lots to do but we are in limbo. How much do you pack up before you have exchanged? My existing house, of 10 years feels cold and empty now. We are ready to move on. In our minds this move is a fresh start and we want that fresh start to happen now. It’s almost like waiting for a much awaited holiday to come around.  I can imagine myself and my family in our new home – which is incredible when I have only been inside it once and day dream from the images on the leaflet. I also have worries. What if this house is nothing like I remember. The big move and all that excitement for nothing.

We still have lots to do but we are in limbo. How much do you pack up before you have exchanged? My existing house, of 10 years feels cold and empty now. We are ready to move on. In our minds this move is a fresh start and we want that fresh start to happen now. It’s almost like waiting for a much needed holiday to come around.  I can imagine myself and my family in our new home – which is incredible when I have only been inside it once and day dream from the images on the leaflet. I also have worries. What if this house is nothing like I remember. The big move and all that excitement for nothing. The grass isn’t always greener and all that.

Luckily there’s no work to do to the house – from what i remember. I want a wall taken down and the garage to be transformed and new furniture. I want all my girls to have pretty single beds rather than their high sleepers, I want a new bed, something vintage and pretty. A new dining table, A new sofa. I also want new curtains and new bedding, a new desk and a new dresser. I just want to start all over again and buy the things that I have dreamt about for years. I want it all light and white and calm and relaxing.


We spent the last ten years growing up in our house. Wasting money and saving money. Having three children and going from the early days in our careers to wherewe are now in our thirties. Our existing house had been the house that we have been growing up in. We have learnt a lot and created new dreams. Our new house is where we will be grown ups. Our decisions will be better. Our income and understanding of money is better.

The people my husband and I and our children want to be and want to become will happen in this house.

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