A Strong Coffee: July 2012

Monday, 30 July 2012

Music for Kids Jingle Puzzles


My boys were very happy this week when we received a music for kids jingle puzzle to review. We were given five little speckled frogs. In the box there is a floor jigsaw, sing along CD with a bonus story and an activity booklet with stickers.


It is recommended for 3-6 year olds. I think it would make a lovely birthday present for a 2 or 3 year old but a younger child would need help with putting the puzzle together. The puzzle pieces are large making them ideal for small hands. An older child may find the puzzle too easy, but there is even the first line of the song printed on the puzzle so if they can read music then they could play the tune!


The activity book that comes with it is simple but useful. It contains the words - which is always good for me as I often get them wrong! Then there is colouring, spot the difference and some "can you spot?" questions to use with the puzzle. Middle man particularly liked this, but it did cause an argument between my boys. Apparently big man was unable to spot all of the bugs because middle man had sat on one! I asked big man if he liked it and he said yes and that his favourite part was the CD of songs.

There are three other titles available - The Wheels on the bus, Twinkle, twinkle little star and Old MacDonald had a farm. They retail for £9.99 and you can find out more at the music room.






I was given this puzzle for the purpose of the review but the opinions here are my own.

Monday Me

At last I can link up with Monday Me. It is not often that I escape my boys for a while. This weekend was our 7th Wedding Anniversary, so we spent the evening at Nivarna Spa. There were even occasions when we didn't talk about the children! I forced my husband to sit and eat dinner outside - even if it was a bit windy. We swam in the outdoor pool and chatted in the outside jacuzzi. He commented that it was nearly like Antigua but with a few more pine trees and a bit colder. We spent about 10 mins in the relaxation room on heated loungers. However, as it is a "quiet" place, I was like a naughty school kid and found an overwhelming urge to talk. All in all though a lovely night - even if my poor babysitter had to put up with the boys excitement over one of their best friends' Auntie coming over to look after them!

Then for our anniversary itself my husband and I completed our new tradition of the "One Stop Shop Challenge" - now in its second year! The concept is easy - spend a tenner in the local newsagents to purchase the best anniversary gift!

Here is my gift to my husband:


I had to point out that the Munchies had "fancy me" on - I had sorted through the box to find these. He also won the money back on his scratch card, and I bought the giant swizzle and lolly drumstick as we had these as the favours at our Wedding.

And here is my present from my husband:


From this I found out that I have no idea about a lot of the so called celebrities these days - I have only ever watched TOWIE once!

Do you have any anniversary traditions?

I am linking this to Monday me.


TheMiniMesandMe

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Silent Sunday



Saturday, 28 July 2012

Childhood


My boys are lucky. They have a lovely childhood full of fun, food and love. Unfortunately not every child in the world can say the same. I have been tagged in a blog hop by Hollie Smith. Fellow blogger Merry from Patch of Puddles, is raising awareness of the charity World Vision.

I have recently been worrying about choosing the best school for big man, in Africa many children have to leave school in order work. You can read more about the work of this charity into lost childhoods.

Up until 30th August the charity are able to obtain matched funding by the DFID, so the government will double every pound you donate. If you are able to make a donation please follow this link to the Worldvision website.

As this is a blog hop raising awareness I am going to tag a couple of fellow new bloggers. Laura at pass the sedatives and Helen at Mummy to the Max and ask them if they will help spread the word.

Merry's post that explains it all can be read here http://www.patchofpuddles.co.uk/archives/8626/childhood

Thursday, 26 July 2012

You make me smile

Well this past week has been a good one. Lots of lovely memories made.

We started the week my visiting my parents and a trip to Skegness. As always we had a lovely time, and big man enjoyed a donkey ride


We enjoyed a trip to the park and baby man was entertained for ages on the swings


And we finished the week with a trip to my inlaws and a walk in the woods. We built a den and middle man could easily have spent all afternoon tending to his pretend BBQ!


And now the sun has arrived so some more outdoor fun can be had this week!

You're not from round here


Reasons to be Cheerful at Mummy from the Heart

You make me smile

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Walk in the woods

An afternoon walk in the woods to me. An adventure to my boys.
 
Nature to explore. Trees to climb through. An imaginary BBQ to poke with a stick. A den to build. Life seen through the eyes of children. 


 



Very excited that last weeks collage of Skegness was winner of Fun photo fun. 


Mum's the Word

The Gallery - Street Photography

A hard task this week and this is my second go at it. It was a close call between this and my walk in the woods. I finally decided to go with yesterdays day out at Legoland as it didn't have my boys in and was of things that I wouldn't normally focus on. As you would expect in the school holidays there was lots of hustle and bustle. As usual I had my camera out snapping the boys. Here is a selection of the background of the photos with my boys cut out. Strangers enjoying themselves on a sunny day out.


Tuesday, 24 July 2012

See it Snap it Love it - Morning



Middle man wakes early in the morning and comes to find us so he can go downstairs. (I think the camera caught him off guard this morning!)
Baby man wakes each morning with a smile.
Big man now gets his own breakfast in the morning.
I have a strong coffee in the morning!


Celebrating Success


Big man is growing up fast. There are lots of things that big man is good at - imaginary play is second to none. When it comes to sports he has chosen to focus on swimming and gymnastics. We started him swimming at the age of 12 weeks. He has always enjoyed it and watching the fun he has in the water makes me happy. My proudest moment has to be when he first swam 5m unaided. His confidence often holds him back. I know he is capable of more than he realises, but to see his face was beautiful He was quite literally beaming from ear to ear. He has lessons in term time and then to celebrate his success we take him to the local water park in the holidays so he can have some fun in the water.

I must say that I was shocked when big man decided to take up gymnastics. I had taken him for a few months and he showed little interest other than bouncing along the air track. If an instructor came near him he screamed. So I decided enough was enough and gymnastics wasn't for him. I didn't want to be a pushy Mum making him do a sport that he didn't like. Big man had different ideas. "When am I going to do gymnastics again Mummy?" became a daily question. In the end I called his bluff and said that he could do it if he went in the "without parents" class. I was pretty sure that after 45 mins of crying and screaming at the instructor we would be able to forget all about it. Of course there was no crying, he did exactly what he was told and goes every Wednesday!

He has his own special blanket that his badges are sewn onto. On a recent trip to his Grandparents it went in his special bag of things he needed to take away. Considering that the only other things in the bag were Mickey Mouse and 2 pairs of pants, I think that shows how proud he is of his sporting achievements to date.



This is my entry for the #PGRaisingOlympians Celebrate Success Linky, sponsered by P&G.

Here is Kim Tannock talking about her son Liam and how she has raised an Olympian.




Monday, 23 July 2012

Pretty.Little.Things - Coming home outfit

This is baby man all ready to come home in his brand new outfit


So this was what he was meant to be wearing but of course he had other ideas! I can't show you the outfit he wore, because whilst my family was around meeting the little man I was up in bed unable to move. Generally the day hadn't gone quite as planned! I have managed to find a picture of him as we left the hospital all snuggled in his car seat. Can't believe how big his snowsuit looks!





Sunday, 22 July 2012

The Naughty Spot

Middle man is two. They call them terrible for a reason! I know he is just learning boundaries, but at the moment it feels like endless tantrums and a lot of time spent on the naughty spot. The biggest problem I have at the moment is staying angry at him when he is there. The trouble is, he knows how to work people. As I have mentioned before he has the most gorgeous eyes - and they turn into puppy dog eyes the moment he is moved towards the naughty spot. The bottom lip comes out to show that he is sorry. Then he puckers up one eye opened one eye closed and leans in for a kiss. He generally makes my heart melt and spends nowhere near the 2 minutes on his spot.

This week I went to visit my parents and had a lovely time. On the whole the boys were good - except for waking in the middle of the night hoping it was morning. Middle man did find himself on the naughty spot however, for banging the TV. I asked him what he had done wrong, "I bang TV" I then asked him what he should do. "I say sorry." Excellent he was doing so well. "Go on then" I said and looked over to my Mum and Dad where I was expecting him to go to do his apologies. He ran in the opposite direction. Towards the TV. "Sorry TV" he muttered as he puckered up to kiss it. 

Wot So Funee?

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Baby man's driving skills

I am first to admit that I am a stereo typical "woman driver." I absolutely hate parking. I am slightly better now I have parking sensors but have been seen doing 150 point turns to get out of places, and if there's a drive through space I am there.

Baby man is now on the move. So far he has only mastered reverse. Like his Mummy, he reverses into a small space, gets stuck and starts crying. He hasn't mastered phoning Daddy and cry down the phone at him that he is never going to get out of the space!





Thursday, 19 July 2012

Skegness

The weather may be miserable but my boys have been happy. A trip to the seaside is always a winner. Sandcastles to be built, ice cream to be eaten and donkeys to be ridden - who needs the sun to have fun!







Middle man was of course up to his usual tricks. He went in search of water. Quite a task when the sea was a long way out. He started out carrying his watering cans, running faster and faster. Then he dropped these to run faster and then he fell. And then he splashed. And then he explored. And then he complained.





  Sweet Shot Tuesday with Kent Weakley

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

See it Snap it Love it - Growing

There are so many pictures I could have posted for the theme growing but I decided to go for big man as last week was the end of an era for him. He "graduated" pre school. Lots of things have happened in the year and a half that he has been there. He made friendships of his own, his vocabulary grew, he became a big brother for a second time, he learnt to write, he has learnt to climb well, he has became the gorgeous inquisitive little man that he is now.


One thing has stayed the same throughout his preschool. His jumper! I don't know why I listened to the young boy in the uniform shop when he said it fitted. I thought he would grow into it! Which he did - and there's still some growing room left. My big man is growing up fast. Everyday is an adventure to him. And it is a privilege to watch.


Things that make me smile

Big man graduated pre schoool this week - yes I say graduated. They had a special ceremony where they got certificates, followed by a magic show! I must admit it made me tearful rather than smile - the time has gone so fast. But what really made me smile was the cards he made for his teachers. For some reason he thinks one of them has a giraffe like neck - she doesn't.


On Saturday I went shopping and collected a box ready for our summer holiday bucket list. And number 4 - make a puppet theatre was completed. Here is big man ready for swimming, putting on one of his productions.


Ready for our trip away, big man packed his bags. One small bag with stickers and one rucksack containing Mickey Mouse and 2 pairs of pants! Luckily I packed a few more bits!







You're not from round here