Thursday, 28 June 2012

Life In an Instagram {3}

 A little bit of what we've been up to this week...

Izzy and I go to the library every week. I usually choose books for him while plays.

 Went to Starbucks after the library and had an iced decaf latte and we ate a packed lunch.

 Bubble bath after dinner!

 Giving George and Peppa kisses at the soft play place.

 We went to Glasgow to look at flats. See the Starbucks? That will be my new local. Bet yours isn't in a building that awesome!

 Also in Glasgow there is a California style burrito bar. Man, I miss those. This one wasn't amazing but it was good and I'll be eating there more.

 I gave him my old iPod nano ages ago. It's usually docked in his room but he wanted to listen on headphones like daddy.

 He enjoys stacking rocks like Makka Pakka on In the Night Garden.

He really loves pushing the trolley now when we go shopping. This is working out well for us so far. He's not complaining about being stuck in the trolley and he's not running around grabbing things from the shelves!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Is That Normal?! {1}

1. Is it normal to lie about your age?

Not for me, no. I'm 34 and I'm proud of it. I've never been one to lie about my age anyway. I mean, I know a lot of people do when they're in their teens and want to be older, or want people to think that they're older but I never did. I really can't imagine I'll lie about my age as I get older either.

2. Is it normal to have mistaken someone for the opposite sex?

No. If there was ever any doubt in my mind about someone's sex, I'd certainly not say something to them.

3. Is it normal to go #2 in a public restroom?

It would be awesome if I went my whole life without blogging about poo but here I am. I say yes and no. If you have to go, you have to go... but I certainly try to keep that at home, personally.

4. Is it normal to sit right next to a stranger at the movie theater?

Nooo. The only exception to this is if the theater is absolutely packed. Otherwise, keep your distance, please. Nothing would make me feel more uncomfortable than this.

5. Is it normal to lie about your weight?

I think it's probably normal for quite a few people, but for me, no. I simply choose not to discuss my weight. Ha!

6. Is it normal to sing and dance in the car?

Absolutely! Best place for it, in my opinion! I don't care if I'm alone or not. I don't care who's around. It's awesome.

7. Is it normal to take self-pictures in public?

No. I'd feel like I was drawing attention to myself and I'd be too embarrassed to do it. I think the only people this is normal for is teenage girls.

8. Is it normal for women to have a gun license?

I don't know why not. I grew up in a house with guns and both my parents had concealed weapons permits, but I would choose not to if I were still in a country where it was legal. That's my choice. And of course, being in the UK where guns are illegal, it's not normal at all.

9. Is it normal to post pictures of yourself online in a bikini?

For me? Hell no. But it doesn't bother me if other people do. If you've got the body for it, why not?

10. Is it normal to like the smell of gasoline?

No! Ugh, I hate that smell and I don't understand at all how some people like it.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

5 Little Ducks Activity

I love browsing Pinterest for ideas on things to do with my toddler. I also have a ton of blogs saved on Google Reader that I browse when I'm in the mood that are filled with crafts and DIY things.

Last week I found a pin that led me to Mama Smiles and a printable PDF of a mama duck and her five babies. It reminded me of one of my little boy's favorite song, Five Little Ducks.

Now I'd never heard of this song until a couple years ago when taking him to some baby/toddler groups. If you aren't familiar with it here is Izzy's favorite version from YouTube.

Five little ducks
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
But only four little ducks came back.

Four little ducks
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
But only three little ducks came back.

Three little ducks
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
But only two little ducks came back.

Two little ducks
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
But only one little duck came back.

One little duck
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
But none of the five little ducks came back.

Mother duck she
Went out one day
Over the hill and far away
Mother duck said
"Quack, quack, quack, quack."
And all of the five little ducks came back. 

When I saw the PDF file I had the idea to make little stick puppets to go along with the song. 

What you'll need:

  • A printer
  • Something to decorate with (crayons, paint, pens, etc)
  • Crafting sticks or popsicle sticks
  • Card stock or an empty cereal box
  • Glue
Start by printing off the PDF from Mama Smiles. Decorate your ducks with your little one. We used orange and yellow markers to color ours and then added googly eyes. We also added some glue to the mother duck's body and added some yellow feathers we had in our crafting bin.

Next, cut out your ducks but don't worry about cutting along the lines just yet because you will want to glue them to some card stock next. I chose to use a cereal box for ours. I glued the ducks down against the colored side so the back would be white. Now you can cut your ducks out around the lines.

Now just add a bit of glue to the end of a popsicle stick and you're finished! Perfect little puppets to use when you sing the song and great for teaching your child about counting and counting backwards.

Izzy loved the ducks so much that he just wants to play with them throughout the day and they've held up surprisingly well. The picture I took of them is from today (as I only had the idea to blog about it today) and as you can see, even after several days of play they are looking good.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Five Question Friday {9}

1. What do you keep a stock pile of? 
I can't think of anything I stockpile. 

 2. If Ben & Jerry asked you to invent an ice cream, what would it be? 
Hmm... they have a lot of good flavors already. Let's think. It should have chunks of banana, a fudge core (because those new core ones are amazing), bits of waffle cone, some peanut butter in there somehow or just some salty peanuts. Yeah, that sounds like a good start. In vanilla ice cream with some cinnamon swirls?

3. How do you blow off steam?
 I don't really. Unless I really get pissed off and then I clean. Angry cleaning. It doesn't usually last long because I really do hate cleaning.

4. What would you do if you had an hour to yourself anywhere within a ten mile radius of your kids, no hubby, just you? 
Probably go to Starbucks for a coffee. That's what I do right now. I have a few hours of me time every week and that's where I spend it.

5. When you were 16, what was your curfew in the summertime?
It was 9pm during the week because my dad would never go to bed until I was home so since it was a work night for him then I had to be in early. I think it was 10:00 or 11:00 on weekends with exceptions for things like school dances. And I was not to be a minute late. I can remember calling home a few times asking if I could stay out an extra hour but the answer was always no and that I'd better be through the door on the hour. My dad was strict to the point that I'm surprised I was allowed out at all. I might not have been if it weren't for my mom constantly fighting in my corner.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Life In an Instagram {2}

Oh, I failed at this big time this week. I didn't use my phone much for taking photos since I replaced the memory card in my real camera I've been using that a lot more. So here are the only four I have for this week!

 At the park and playground behind our place. We had a little picnic and played with the ball and I had a lot of fun on the swings. You're never to old to swing.

 We took Izzy to Hammond's Pond to feed the ducks and afterward played on the playground.

 The Olympic torch came through our city yesterday. On Tuesday Izzy came out of nursery with his very own that he made.

Took Izzy to one of the softplay places. I always go down the big slide with him because it's a giant slide and I can!

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

12 Week Shape Up {2}

I'm going to be completely honest here.

I "signed up" to do this and then really didn't take it that seriously this week. I started out with good intentions but the truth is, I only did fruit till noon for two days and really slacked on everything else for much of the week.

I even thought about just pretending this thing never even happened and making my first 12 Week Shape Up post disappear.

But, I need this. I don't want to throw away all the hard work I did earlier this year. I've come down three sizes since January and I'm dangerously close to going back up. I don't want to go back up in sizes.

Three days ago I started exercising again. Rowing machine for 20 minutes the first day and increasing the time by 1 minute every day. Weights after the rowing machine to try to tone my arms as I'm getting those lovely bingo wings since losing weight. And, loads of sit-ups. This will be my routine for the next week and then I may change it up a bit or just carry on.

Mission 2 - Tracking

This is really necessary for me to stay on track. I go to Slimming World and follow their plan but it's really not a diet. It's about eating foods that give you energy and keep you fuller for longer. You don't count calories. You eat as much as you want of the "free" foods but learn to listen to your body when it comes to portion control. At every meal you are meant to fill at least a third of your plate with fruits and/or veggies. Free foods include lean meats with all visible fat cut off prior to cooking, eggs, beans, fruits, veggies, potatoes, pasta....and I can't think anymore. You're also meant to have a healthy portion of calcium and fiber every day. Like, a slice of wholemeal toast or a portion of porridge oats/oatmeal and milk or a portion of cheese. Anything else you eat during the day (butter, chocolate, sauces, whatever) counts as "syns" and you're allowed 10-15 of them a day. This is the only counting that you have to do and 1 syn is approximately 20 calories. So, you can still have other stuff which is good as I really love to have a bit of chocolate every day. After you've been doing it for awhile, you get a feeling for how much of these extras you can have without counting them. It really is a plan that works, you're never ever ever hungry and it's something that you can easily do for life without ever feeling like you're on a diet.

Oh, but I was talking about tracking! I find that it's really important for me to track everything I eat. Even though I'm not counting calories just seeing what I've had helps me make good choices. I'm not sure what else it does for me but I can tell you from experience that it does help.

I have not been tracking for the past couple of weeks and it shows.

So, back to tracking!

Saturday, 16 June 2012

I've Missed My Camera

I haven't used my proper camera in ages because the memory card broke. I finally got around to ordering a new one and then couldn't find the reader and had to order a new one of those. I lose things a lot.

Last Sunday I took Izzy to our local Dobie's Garden Centre. They have a playground and a petting farm so I took him out for lunch and to play and see the animals. We spent two hours there. Great for a free day out, aside from the £9 lunch that we shared. Yikes.

He spent most of his time with the chickens. He loved them. He kept saying, "Funny chickens," and feeding them leaves and rocks. Ha! He would stick them through the wire and the chickens would grab them from his fingers and he thought it was hilarious. 

Pigs definitely used to be his favorite but he didn't spend a lot of time with them here.

 How cute are these sleeping piglets? Adorable!

Then the other night when we came home there were cows in the field near our place. So we pulled over to let him get a closer look. It's funny how curious cows are. Izzy actually started crying when we said it was time to go. He never does that!

 Some other random photos.....

This has been his outfit of choice for a few days now. His Cars 2 hat, a diaper and his Bob the Builder wellies. I say, whatever makes him happy is okay with me!

At the playground behind our place.

We brought bubbles and cars with us for extra fun!

Thursday, 14 June 2012

My Life in an Instagram {1}

Another new blog I found the other day... According to L!

She also has a weekly link up that I'm joining-- Life in an Instagram. I already share my Instagram photos via a widget on my blog so it may be a bit redundant but eh, who cares!

If I had known ahead of time that I'd be doing this, I would have taken some different photos but I'll share what I've got now anyway.

Last Friday I took Izzy into the city centre but it was all about him. First I bought him a cookie (on a stick!), then I let him play in the rain and the puddles, then we went to the library to check out books and colour! 

We've also gone on a few walks this week. Here's a random shot.

One of the things he's really into is hot air balloons. We were looking at a counting book about 6 weeks ago and it had some hot air balloons in it. He's had the book for ages but I decided to look up hot air balloons on YouTube (such a great resources for toddlers!) so he could see what they really are and he's been obsessed ever since. He asks to watch them every day! So when we were headed off to the grocery store the other day he was SO excited to spot this floating in the air! He also really enjoyed the cows.

Yesterday we spent an hour and a half at the playground near our house. Of course he had to spend most of his time on the bigger kids' structure so I hovered like a crazy mom, worried he was going to fall and crack his head open!

This was on the pavement at the playground and it made me smile.

Today the husband and I went for a coffee at Starbucks while the little one was in nursery. Since we're moving to Glasgow soon, I was eyeing the Glasgow mugs. £6.50!

And that was a glimpse into my week! Looking forward to doing this again next week now that I know about it.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

12 Week Shape Up {1}

It's been around 6 weeks since my sponsored slim ended and I've really been struggling since then. I've gained weight a few weeks, lost weight a couple of weeks and stayed the same a couple of weeks. No good. I've still got a long way to go so I need to get myself back at it.

Leah at Lovely Life of Leah has started a 12 week challenge and I'm all in! It started yesterday so I am jumping in first thing in the morning with the first challenge of eating nothing but fruit until noon. So glad I bought those two pineapples at the store yesterday!

So What! Wednesday {1}

I just discovered Life After I "Dew" yesterday via Pinterest. She has a link-up on Wednesdays and I could use something to get me blogging more. So here goes! My first "So What! Wednesday"!

So what if...

  • I'm addicted to Pinterest.
  • It's taking me all week to read The Little Prince.
  • I'm teaching my son to be a weirdo like me.
  • I don't read the news anymore. Life is happy in my ignorant bubble.
  • I'm skipping Slimming World tonight.
  • I finally watched the series finale of Desperate Housewives and cried at the end.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Five Question Friday {8}

1. Did you do anything special for your kids on the last day of school? Or did you parents do anything special for you? 

My little one is only 2 so we're not at that stage yet. My parents never did anything special for us so the thought probably would have never even occured to me. I think the last day of school was always special enough on it's own. It was always a day with a buzzing atmosphere to it. Loved the last day of school. It was always bittersweet as well.
2. What's your favorite summer tradition with your children? 

Again, my little one is too little to have an established summer tradition yet. Not really sure what kind of summer tradition there might be? Hopefully going on some sort of holiday will become a tradition! I have no idea what part of the world we'll eventually settle in so it's hard to guess what sort of festivals/fairs/etc we might go to in the summer time.

 3. What was your favorite thing to do during the summer as a kid?

Definitely playing in water. Sprinklers, pools, paddling pools. Loved it! Izzy got to play in his first paddling pool a couple of weeks ago and he had the time of his life. But he's loved water and pools and baths since he was only a few months old.

4. How old were you when you were married? Were you a Bridezilla?

 I was 27 and we eloped, so nope... not a Bridezilla! It was just me and hubby. :)

5. What is your favorite girl name?

I'm not sure. We looked at girl names a few years ago before we knew we were having a boy and I can't even remember the names we had. I've always loved the name Ariel, which was my favorite cousin's name when I was growing up and I was a huge Little Mermaid fan. I was quite keen on Arielle (with an emphasis on the, Ari-ELLE) but hubby didn't like it much. 

Monday, 4 June 2012

Diamond Jubilee

Today is the first of two bank holidays for the queen's diamond jubilee.

The castle in our city was having a crown making session for kids and my sister-and-law and I were going to take our boys to it. I got to the castle a bit early and took Izzy on the playground to play for awhile before finding out that my sister-in-law couldn't make it at the last minute due to a family emergency. So it was just me and Izzy but that wasn't going to stop us from having fun!

After that we walked over to the castle for the crown making session. I didn't get a picture of him making his crown though!

Then we went into the city centre. The Early Learning Centre was having a little hunt in the shop. If you donated £1 to charity then they'd give your kid a little shopping basket and they could go around the store looking for little Happyland people. Once they collected five people they could turn them in for a goodie bag. Izzy reall had fun with it.

And there was a music festival going on in the city centre so we listened to one of the bands play and Izzy was dancing in his stroller. It was so cute!

He looks very serious here though, doesn't he?

Last night we drove through to the Whitehaven Festival so he could see the Red Arrows. It's the Royal Air Force's aerobatics team. He LOVED that. He's been talking about it ever since and laying in bed using his hand as an airplane to fly around while he was making noises. So today I bought him a little die-cast airplane. Hubby also ordered him a couple online last night. He's obsessed with things flying though. For months he's been making his cars and things fly and making the noises for it.

If it doesn't rain tomorrow then we're going to take him back thorugh to Whitehaven for the carnival. They had some rides that I think he'll really like but they were closing down for the night when we were there yesterday so he missed out. 

Friday, 1 June 2012

Five Question Friday {7}

1. What were you scared of as a kid? 

I was scared of a lot as a kid but one of my biggest fears was my parents being killed. I used to have nightmares about it when I was young and can remember a lot of them in detail to this day.

2. Do you sleep well in a hotel? 

I usually sleep fairly well. The only thing that ever causes me problems is if the bed is uncomfortable or the pillow isn't soft/fluffy enough. Otherwise, I'm not bothered about sleeping somewhere else. I'm comfortable in hotels but maybe it's because I've slept in a lot of them!

3. If you could meet any celebrity, dead or alive, who and why? 

I don't really have a celebrity that I am dying to meet so I'm not sure on this one. The first person who comes to mind is Russell Brand because he's freakin hilarious, incredibly intelligent and I imagine him being a lot of fun. But that would be in a dream world where I had the self-confidence to be comfortable and be myself around someone like that.

4. It's a hot summer day. Do you prefer to be pool side or at the beach? 

Definitely the beach. I'm not into laying by the pool and tanning. I'd either be in the pool or at the beach. But yeah, definitely prefer the beach. I think it's relaxing and rejuvinating at the same time. I love going in the water and I love laying on the beach with a good book.

5. What is your favorite summer dish? 

There's nothing I really think of as being summery. The only thing that really comes to mind is like, barbeque food and in that case, I'd say my mom's macaroni salad and potato salad. I haven't had them in like 10 years and they are both really tasty!