Get the garden ready for the summer.

 

 

Garden

*This is a collaborative post.

The garden was a big part of our home to do list. We started it last summer and made a big difference removing the gravel, adding flower beds and laying a patio.

Now the weather has picked up again over the last week, we finally have sunshine and longer days to get back to the garden and finish it before the summer.

I have to admit I was never a keen gardener, dirt and bugs just aren’t my thing. However last summer we went flower shopping and we picked up some beautiful and bright flowers to add a pop of colour to the garden. We enjoyed planting them in the garden as a family. The kids love digging in the mud, getting their hands dirty. They also enjoy choosing the plants at the garden centre.

gardening

We plan on picking up more bright flowers during the May half term to plant. But first we need to get the garden ready. We have finally picked the rubbish up in the back garden that was left from Christmas. You know all those boxes that can’t fit in the recycle bin so you put them outside and forget about it.

The kids have been riding their bikes around after school as they can finally move out there. They have been enjoying their weekend lunch on their picnic table and BG1 has even sat on the garden furniture to read her new books.

gardening

Next week the hubby is turning the mud ready for the grass. At last we will actually have a beautiful garden to sit in during the summer. Or at least that is the idea. We still have a way to go until it is completely ready.

The grass still needs to be laid and the wall/bench still needs rendering. But we are slowly getting there.

The Secret Garden

And lets not forget about the front courtyard. It looks like the secret garden out the front. The hedge is so over grown you have to fight your way through the entrance getting attacked by over grown foliage.

If I have my way (and usual I do) the hubby will get some chainsaw gloves and cut the hedge down. That would be the best scenario, to just have the hedge taken down and a little fence put in it’s place. However in reality the hedge will just get trimmed back and we won’t have a mouth full of leaves when we come home.

Weeds are also taking over the front yard. One measuring in at around three feet tall. The hubby will be spending a few evenings after work digging them up and tidying the front yard.

The recent change in weather is the perfect timing for us. And the perfect timing for you too. Take a few evenings from now until the summer to tidy up your garden. Lets all get green fingered and plant some bright flowers.

I love gerberas, and am planning to plant bright pink, orange and red ones.

garden

Having a garden is important for us. It gives the kids the outdoor space they need for the summer time when we can’t get out. There are days when we can’t go out for walks or on day trips and having a tidy and pretty garden is a major advantage for us.

Gardening tool box

  • Plant pots
  • Spade
  • Rake
  • Trowel
  • garden gloves
  • Chainsaw gloves
  • watering can
  • seeds
  • pruning sheers
  • strimmer

What are you planting? Does your garden tidying like mine? Is it so over grown you have your own secret garden? Do you have a hedge you want to get the chainsaw to? whats in your gardening tool box?

 

 

 

 

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House To Do List 2017

house to do list 2017

At the beginning of starting my blog I wrote a To Do list for the Hubby. We had bought our house about a year before and there were many things left unfinished. Before the summer arrives (I know its like six months away but hey it will probably take that long to complete the list) I want to get the house looking finished in the hope that we can put it up for sale and move to a bigger place. That’s my hope for 2017 atleast.

Living Room

  • Paint back wall
  • Put up wall lights
  • Paint Ceiling
  • Clear out the toy cupboards
  • Put up the mirror

    Kitchen

  • Clear out and wash cupboards
  • Paint walls
  • Wash window and replace window sill
  • Lay new floor
  • Add new cupboard doors
  • Add Plinths

Garden

  • Buy dustbins
  • Tidy crap out
  • Lay grass
  • Clear out the shed
  • Finish the wall/seat

Master bedroom

  • Have a clear out
  • Paint the window wall
  • Fix window

    BG1/LM’s bedroom

  • Fix window
  • Put curtain rail up
  • Clear out toys
  • Buy new toy storage unit

 BG2’s Bedroom

  • Paint window wall
  • Have a Clear out

Bathroom

  • Wash walls/ceiling
  • Paint
  • Fix light
  • Put in new suite
  • New floor
  • New tiles

Other

  • New floor in hallway
  • New floor in toilet
  • Paint downstairs toilet room
  • Sort hallway cupboard
  • Gloss and tidy downstairs doors
  • Sort/tidy loft
  • Wash inside windows above the doors
  • Plaster and paint around front door
  • Put up netcurtains/ blinds
    Wash outside windows
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All things bathrooms

all things bathrooms

**This is a collaborative post

Over Christmas our bathroom took a hit. We had a leak from a pipe that went unnoticed for a couple of weeks. It wasn’t until I had noticed that water was seeping up from the lino that we new we had a problem. The entire lino had to be pulled up so the flooring could dry out. Not a great start over Christmas.

This has however prompted us to sort out our bathroom and do a complete refurb. We moved in our house just over a year ago and the bathroom is still in the same poor state that we bought it in. I want a whole new bathroom suite.

We are now planning our bathroom. I don’t want to spend more than £600 on a suite and flooring if I can help it. So we have been looking at bathrooms.

This reminded us that our boiler inspection is over due. Very over due. So we had that scheduled in too. It is so important to have your gas boiler checked by a heating engineer each year I still cant believe I have left it so long.

With the boiler inspection soon to be completed I am setting on the task of updating our bathroom.

What do I want from our bathroom?

We currently have no flooring down except a couple of door mats – you know the ones with the rubber backs – so we don’t get the floor too wet. When we first moved into the house the bathroom was carpeted. I don’t understand what the point of carpet in a bathroom is. I certainly won’t be putting carpet down, I want a lino. I quite like dark floor maybe a grey wood effect.

The toilet needs replacing. I like the ones that have a boxed in cistern that goes with the sink units so they look like one piece of furniture. Needless to say I will also be replacing the sink also to match the toilet. The sink hole has kind of rusted and I want a slightly smaller sink with under storage space as our bathroom currently has none. All of our toiletries are lining the window sill and just makes the room look untidy.

Finally the shower needs replacing. We don’t currently have a bath in the bathroom and with three young children this can at times be difficult to deal with. Although me and my partner only ever use a shower, sometimes it nice for the kids to relax in a bath (and flood the bathroom). Because I don’t want to replace the shower that we have we have decided on a shower bath. As it is wider at one end it means we can keep the shower head in the place it currently is.

That just leaves the colour of the paint and the tiles. So many choices I think this may be the hardest decision I will face when it comes to redecorating the bathroom. We will likely end up painting the walls white and having matching white tiles! Plain and boring and takes little decision making.
Once the bathroom has been completed we can then think about replacing the mirror light for a medicine cabinet and adding some extra storage in the bathroom.

I am hoping that this refurb will not take any more than two months to complete.
Are you currently redecorating your bathroom? Do you want a complete new look for your bathroom? Do you have a shower bath? Is your bathroom floor carpeted? Let me know in the comments below.

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Candles for Christmas

candles for christmas

 

Winter is closing in, the nights are getting darker earlier and the air is bitterly cold. The perfect time of year to curl up on the sofa in your jimjams and blankets with a mug of hot chocolate and your wooly socks straight after the school run.

To add to the wintery, relaxing and cosy atmosphere a few candles scattered around is the final touch. Its that time of year. I love candles, scented and un scented it just adds that extra something to the room. Of course they only get lit once the kids are in bed, until then I use the fake candles which I am also a huge fan of.

Here are my top picks for candles in the winter.

christmas candles

 

  1. Next Winter Spruce candle jar – £7 – Fresh winter fragrance – green leaves, sandalwood and firewood in a beautiful jar.
  2. John Lewis winter spice candle – £16 – festive blend of cinnamon, clove and zesty orange, exotic spice and sumptuous sandalwood. I love that you can see slices of orange in the candle.
  3. Imperial candle Chocolate orange candle – £29.99 –   cacao with oranges, and a vanilla base. These candles are beautiful and also have a piece of jewellery inside.
  4. Next Fragranced candle – £12 – Orange, berries and spices. In a cool candle holder.
  5. Landon Tyler wild Berry candle – Fruity cranberries and raspberries.
  6. The white company pomegranate botanical candle – £26 – Fruity smell with pomegranate and mandarin.
  7. Yankee candle Christmas eve – £21.99 – red berry cinnamon and nutmeg.
  8. Imperial candle candy swirl – £29.99 – mint and mandarin layered with iced peppermint and a hint of vanilla extract and a hidden piece of jewellery.
  9. Yankee candle Berry trifle – £21.99 – Raspberry, strawberry and blueberry.
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Simple steps to Getting cosy in the winter.

 

getting cosy in the winter

The early nights are rolling in fast, soon the clocks will go back and it will be dark not long after we get home from school. The Summer months are the perfect time for late adventures, shopping and trips to the beach. The Winter gives us the perfect excuse to lock the doors and see nobody until morning. Bears get to hibernate why can’t we at least semi-hibernate.

There is nothing quite like getting cosy in the winter. Follow these few simple steps and you can enjoy cosy winter nights locked in the comfort of your home

Preparation

Getting ready for a cosy winter night start early. Like 9:30am just after the morning school run early. Getting your evening meal prepped and cooking, there is nothing like a big bowl of hot stew during the winter months. I love oxtail/cheek stew with big chunks of vegetables and meat in thick gravy. If you are supper prepared you would have made this yesterday, everybody knows stew tastes better the day after. If you haven’t stick it in the slow cooker in the morning and it will be all ready for the evening.

 

getting cosy in the winter

 

Before you Pick the kids up from school

Get the heating on just before you leave so you can walk into a nice warm house, or set the timer so it comes on automatically before you get back. Dig out your favourite PJ’s/Onesie the fluffier the better. Don’t forget the big fluffy socks and dressing gowns too. Lay them out on the sofa ready to go.

A cosy night in wouldn’t be complete without a cosy blanket/duvet/throw so grab those too.

 

getting cosy on the winter

Arriving home with the kids

Once you close the door on the outside, leave it closed. Lock the door and don’t open it again until morning – unless you really have to let the hubby in when he finishes work.

Get all the kids chucked in a nice warm bubble bath and changed into their nice warm jammies you laid out for them earlier.

Stick the kettle on and make some yummy hot chocolate. Marshmallows are a must! Canned squirty cream is also a good choice, and if you are super prepared and have some homemade/freshly baked chocolate chunk cookies – that’s even better. Seriously I really want chocolate chunk cookies now! Why do I also mention yummy food when I don’t have the ingredients to make them at the time?

Once everybody is washed and dressed all warm and cosy send the kids to find a movie. Dish everybody out a nice warm bowl of stew and don’t forget the crusty bread covered in butter.

get cosy on the sofa

Close the curtains and Curl up on the sofa with the kids and a blanket, eat your stew drink your hot chocolate and watch a Disney movie.

This how I will be spending the cold winter nights this year!

How do you get cosy in the winter? Looking for new kids coats for the winter to keep them warm give this a read.

getting cosy in the winter

 

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bedding & duvet covers for kids can change the way they sleep

bedding

sleep is important but not always easy

Recently I posted about the 36 excuses my kids use to avoid going to sleep. We all know that sometimes bedtime can be a nightmare. Most of us have faced these nights on occasion or even every night.

Sleep for a child is so important, us as parents are more than aware of this. Sleep plays a huge role in a child’s development both physically and mentally. It is just as important to get enough sleep as it is to eat healthily and exercise.

One way I have found to keep my kids in bed is using cool and funky bedding. When LM moved from a cot to a toddler bed we used bedding to capture his interest and imagination. His duvet was covered in different coloured cars. As soon as it was time for bed he would snuggle under his duvet and start counting the coloured cars. He would drift off to sleep in no time.

moving to a single bed

LM will soon be turning five, it is coming close to the time where he will be moving from his toddler bed to a normal single bed. Moving beds can be quite an emotional roller-coaster not just for the parents knowing their child is growing up or he may fall out and hurt himself but also for the child. Your child will be excited about getting a new bed, but he may also be scared about the size of the bed or anxious about falling out.

We want to make the transition from a toddler bed to a single bed a smooth and comfortable transition. Using bedding can be a great way to help a child with the move making him feel happy and comfortable. Bonus – He will be pre occupied with cool and fun bedding to even think of getting out of bed.

get your child involved

I spoke with LM about making the move to a big bed. I motioned that we could take a look for some ideas of what bedding he may like when the time comes. We sat down together and browsed the kids duvet collection from Yorkshire Linen.

They not only have a lovely selection of bright and funky duvet covers but also character covers. They not only come in a single size but also toddler and double too.

Little Mans top 4 children’s bedding

Kids bedding

  • Planets Duvet cover set £12.99 – What child doesn’t want to go to space and be an astronaut.
  • Knight & Dragons duvet set £12.99 – LM loves playing pirates, he was excited to know that this duvet set has the same name as his favourite TV show Swashbuckle.
  • Disney cars champ £9.99 – LM favourite character is Lightening Mcqueen, every child will get excited with bedding of their favourite character.
  • Knight & Dragons duvet set £12.99 – Every great bedtime fairytale includes a knight and a dragon.

Bedding in a family home is an important accessory. Choosing the right one is necessary to not only complete the look and atmosphere of a room – especially a Childs themed bedroom – but making the right choice with bedding can aid in sleeping and resting comfortably.

Letting your own child choose their own bedding will get them excited about going to bed, looking forward to the land of sleep. If your child is looking forward to climbing into their bed and snuggling under their own duvet they will unconsciously relax and enable sleep to over take them easier.

mummy’s top 10 finds

After having a search with LM I continued my search on the web and chose my top 10 kids bedding for both boys and girls.

kids bedding

  1. Dino Camo Teal duvet cover – £9.99 – Dunelm
  2. Disney Princess duvet cover – £13.99 – Dunelm
  3. Little Big Cloud Woodland Duvet – £11.99 – Yorkshire Linen
  4. My little Pony Duvet – £12.99 – Yorkshire Linen
  5. Toy box duvet – £15 – Next
  6. Bat Girl Duvet – £22 – Next
  7. Space Explorer Duvet  – £25 – Next
  8. Captain America Duvet – £22 – Next
  9. Secret life of pets duvet – £22 – Argos
  10. Roald Dahl Bookworm Duvet – £19.99 – Argos

 

 Bedtimes don’t have to be boring and a chore.

Have you ever thought about using your child’s bedding to tell bedtime stories. Why not choose a pirate themed bedding and have great stormy adventures on the rough sea trying to find the lost buried treasure. Or how about a space duvet your child can be an astronaut and discover a new planet on the duvet that he gets to name as his own planet. Want to take your little princess to the land of the fairies where magic is possible and dreams come true. Getting your child excited about going to bed is the biggest defeat to sleeping success.

Are you looking for more children’s bedding inspiration? Check out my Pinterest board on kids bedding choices.

 

** This is a collaborative post. All words and opinions are my own.

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