Saturday, 30 March 2013

The bowtie-wearing time lord...

I have been looking forward to tonights TV for weeks!!!

HE'S BACK!!

I'm not on about Will.I.Am on the voice!

 I'm on about The Doctor!!! 

Doctor Who!!!!


The newest episode is called The Bells of Saint John and the Doctor finds himself in modern-day London in his search for Clara Oswald the mysterious souffle-baking woman who keeps dying....But there's a problem...Something dangerous is lurking in the city's wi-fi signals, uploading people's minds and imprisoning them - and among those targeted is none other than the woman he has travelled halfway across the galaxy to find. 

Oh Oh Oh!! To say I am excited it an understatement!

The girls have been warned be quiet or go upstairs....

There is not many tv shows I actually watch so I like to enjoy the one's I do!.....I have the tv on most of the time even when I'm on the laptop and glance up it occasionally but Doctor Who is one of the only shows I watch every second of!!

Doctor Who returns to BBC One tonight at 6.15pm

Anyone else watching?

 

Friday, 29 March 2013

First day of the holidays.....


 
Officially the first day of the Easter holidays and also Good Friday!!

For many Easter is one of the most important festivals in the Christian calendar for some another another holiday from work or school and others it's simply another time for family get-togethers and dinners....

We don't celebrate the religious aspect of Easter. It has always been family time for me....As a child, watching films and eating too much chocolate and now with my children doing the same.... Despite not being a Christian household or growing up in one I've always known the significance of the Cross, hot cross buns and Easter eggs and what they represent in the story of Easter....


I have told the girls about the story of Easter and they have learnt about it at school and have really good understanding of it....This is the first year Ellie has been taught about it at school and she is very knowledgeable considering she's only 5!! Ohh and the teachers have said they have their Easter Eggs on Sunday....She's took notice of that as before she was all for having them today...Bonus!! lol

For us this weekend I have a few new dvd's to watch and we have lots and lots of Easter eggs to eat :) 

Whatever you are doing I hope you have a lovely weekend!!
 

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Recycled Crayons....

Instead of throwing away old, broken crayons away here's a great idea for you to upcycle them for your kids!

Simply melt them down in a muffin tin to reshape those crayons into new unique and useful crayons....You might be amazed at how many usable crayons you’ll get out of all those little stubs...


Method:

Set your oven to preheat to 150 degrees.

Don’t fill your muffin tin moulds too high, as the thicker crayons aren’t as comfortable for kids to use.

Try playing around with mixing contrasting colours in one mould, this creates the most interesting crayons at the end of the day. If you want each crayon to only be one colour though, go ahead and only mix shades of the same colour together.

Cook the crayons in the oven for around 45 minutes, keep an eye on them through the cooking process.

Allow the crayons to cool completely after baking, and then for easy removal, put them in the freezer for an hour. The crayons will simply pop out of the moulds! 


Enjoy your fabulous new crayons!!

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Night nurseries......



Sweden has introduced round the clock childcare for busy working parents and this includes nurseries which are open at night so babies and children can sleep there if their parents are working....

 As Swedish parents work more unconventional hours so local councils are increasingly providing more overnight and weekend childcare services.....

Toddlers arrive at night nurseries in time to eat dinner, clean their teeth and then enjoy a bedtime story with a member of staff.

In the morning, staff will zip them into their padded snow suits and can wheel them by buggy to a nearby day centre while parents sleeps off their night shift.

Night nurseries are used by almost 5000 children in Sweden.

What do you think? 

I actually think if you have to go out to work it is a great idea...Of course the best place for children is tucked up in bed at home but the way shift patterns often work it's not going to be every night....

You could do a night shift, get a couple of hours sleep and then be around for your children during he day.....Rather than missing out on their day time fun time you are missing out on them sleeping. A much better concept in my eyes.

I think it would be a good option and could be really beneficial for single parents who don't have a partner at home for childcare. The more options available the better.....

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Twitter does good!!


 
I had a problem with British Gas yesterday with my account....Without going into too much detail I owe them money but they owe me money too and the money owed was supposed to be paid by the 31st of March at the latest from them....Therefor clearing my account of any debt....

I had the debt department from British Gas ring me saying I owe the money when will it be paid? I said as soon as you're paying it by the 31st of March and explained it confused them....The person I was speaking to sounded like she was speaking from a script and anything which deviated from it confused her....She said they don't owe me money...End of! So I asked to speak to someone else and she tried to put me through but the phone went dead...

I rang back up and spoke to another robot who said no there is no record of it and the bill needs paying....Then did the online chat on their website and got disconnected halfway through. I was livid!!

Then I had a thought....TWITTER!!

I complained on there and got a tweet back within minutes...


I directly messaged them and within 9 minutes the whole thing was sorted!! I spent over an hour speaking to people on the phone and got nowhere!!

Now I know this is the age of social media but how is it even right that I get more sense from someone through Twitter than speaking to someone on the phone?

Some people have already said 'Oh British Gas is rubbish' but I've never had a problem with them until today....Seems like there has been a change of call center staff...

A complaint has been made I'll see what happens.... 

Monday, 25 March 2013

Our Weekly Meal Plan!! - #mealplanningmonday



This week I have asked the kids what they wanted for their teas...The last few weeks we've been trying a lot of new/different meals and the majority have gone down well with Becky, Stu & I....Ellie has not been impressed at all....She's going through a fussy phase....All the foods she usually likes she's turning her nose up at.....Even things like tomato sauce which she's always loved...lol...So this week I'm going for the easy option and the girls have picked some of their favourites....

So this week on the menu we have......

Monday -  Chicken Curry and Rice.....Using the left over chicken fromm yesterdays dinner....
Tuesday - Fish fingers, chips & beans....
Wednesday - Spaghetti Bolognese & Garlic Bread
Thuyrsday - Ham and cheese toasties....
Friday - Pizza
Saturday - Pork stir fry
Sunday - Toad in the hole, mash & veg....

As always I've joined in with the wonderful At Home With Mrs M's #mealplanningmonday linky.


Saturday, 23 March 2013

Shake it Up - Album Review

Becky is a huge fan of the tv show Shake it Up which is an American comedy show shown on the Disney Channel most days!!

They have released a new album called Shake It Up I <3 Dance which we were asked to review....


Shake it up follows the adventures of CeCe Jones and Rocky Blue as they star as background dancers on a local show, Shake It Up Chicago. It also chronicles their misadventures on- and off-set, and their troubles and rising social status at school...

If you have seen the tv show before you should know what to expect from the album...I would call it cheesy pop / dance music....Ideal for kids and teenagers....Makes a refreshing change from the likes of One Direction and Justin Bieber! It is good clean music which is hard to find now a days.... Of course with it been by Disney there is no foul language, sexual innuendos or anything nasty...Fab!!

Becky is 10 and absolutely loves it....The album has a good selection of songs that will keep you dancing and entertained....Even Ellie is liking it and she's 5!!

Becky has said her favourite song is This Is My Dance Floor which is the second song on the CD it sounds familiar to me....I think I may of heard it on the tv show.....One song I did know was These Boots Are Made for Walkin'.....Yes the same one as by Nancy Sinatra or Jessica Simpson which one you'll know depends on how old you are...lol Not as good as the Nancy Sinatra but better than the Jessica Simpson one...

We really love this soundtrack. It has a little for everyone....

This is available to buy from the 25th of March for £10.98

I was sent this free of charge for my honest review....All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Friday, 22 March 2013

Do you qualify?...Do you want the job?


 
JOB DESCRIPTION:  
Long term team players needed for challenging permanent work in an often chaotic environment. Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be willing to work various hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24 hour shifts on call. Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in faraway cities. Travel expenses not reimbursed. Extensive courier duties also required.

RESPONSIBILITIES
This is for the rest of your life. Must be willing to be hated at least temporarily, until someone needs £5 to go out. Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly. Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the garden are not someone just crying wolf. Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zips. Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and coordinate production of multiple homework projects. Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks. Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next.  Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys and battery operated devices. Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. Must assume final, complete accountability for the quality of the end product.  Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.

POSSIBILITY FOR ADVANCEMENT AND PROMOTION: 
Virtually none. Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills, so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you.

PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE: 
None required, unfortunately. On-the-job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.

WAGES AND COMPENSATION: 
You pay them, offering frequent raises and bonuses. A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent. When you die, you give them whatever is left. The oddest thing about this reverse- salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.

BENEFITS:
 
While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered, job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth and free hugs for life if you play your cards right.

Ahhh the joys of being a Parent!!


Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Slash your food bills!!

Did you know that your food budget is the single easiest way to reduce your expenses? You will definitely see the results both in your health and finances by making an effort in this budget area.


Plan ahead

Slot about half an hour in your schedule to plan your breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks for the week....

Start by checking your kitchen cabinets for what you already have on hand, and build your menu around this. Once you have a completed menu you can put together your grocery list. A good tip is to remember to check on toothpaste, toilet rolls etc so that you don’t waste time on unnecessary trips back to the supermarket.

Keep a list of what’s in the freezer
 
You may have something really delicious in your freezer but have totally forgotten it’s there. Keep a list on the fridge and update it every week for when you are planning your next round of meals.

Grocery shop only three times a month

And stick to your list!  People who eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables always hate this tip. But if you bring them home, prepare them immediately and keep them in airtight containers....Most will easily last ten days. Remember to also stick to seasonal fruit and vegetables – they’re much cheaper!

Plan a ‘meal prep’ day

Try to spend a couple of hours every ten days or so cooking up a big batch of your basic foods. Things like mince, rice, beans, veggies, stews or even stuff that you can just throw into salads or stir-fries. This will save time preparing your weekday meals and you will be less tempted to take the lazy way out and order takeaway!

Become semi-vegetarian

There are a lot of reasons to eat a plant-based diet. One reason is that meat is expensive. Try making rice, beans and other vegetarian options the main staples for your working week and splash out on weekends and special occasions with meat. If that’s too difficult you, consider just one meat-free day a week.

Limit alcohol
 
If you do drink alcohol, try to limit having it in your home only when you have friends over or planning a special occasion. You don’t need to have it every day, and you will quickly see the savings add up.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Magic Choc - Review.

We were sent some Magic Choc to try out...

When I am lucky enough to be sent things if they are good I say they are and if they are not so good I am not going to lie this is my honest review!!.


"Magic Choc claims to be magical, flexible chocolate that lets you make your own chocolate models and then eat them afterwards!"

We had never tried this type of thing before so didn't really know what to expect...

We opened the box and found there was 3 bags of chocolate...Approx 140g of Milk Chocolate, 90g White Chocolate & 45g Dark Chocolate.

 
I shared the chocolate between Becky and Ellie and they started trying to mould it into something....I say try because the chocolate was near impossible for them to mould...It was nearly as hard as a normal piece of chocolate and took me a a while to soften it and when I did it became very oily and when we got round to making models it becomes very crumbly...There was no inbetween!

You can see from the picture how oily it got and crumbly too..



 After about 20 minutes the girls did start to lose patience....I did too....They couldn't do anything with it....This is the best we could come up with and you can see the crumbs off it...It just would not work for us!....


I'm very sorry to say myself and the girls were very disappointed with the Magic Choc...We may of got a bad batch but we did follow the instructions to the letter....I guess Becky, Ellie and I were just meant to eat chocolate and not model with it....It did taste lovely though!!

We won't be buying this in the future.

I was sent this free of charge for my honest review....All thoughts and opinions are my own.  Thank you to Magic Choc..

Monday, 18 March 2013

Meal Plan Monday!! #mealplanningmonday



Meal Planning Monday

The weeks seem to be flying over...We're back round again to a Monday!!

 This week on the menu we have...
 
Monday - Tuna pasta bake....
Tuesday - Sausages, chips & beans....
Wednesday - Bacon and pepper frittata....
 Thursday - Corned beef pie, mash & veg....
Friday - Fish in butter sauce, new potatoes, sweetcorn & peas....
 Saturday -  Chinese takeaway!

Sunday - Roast chicken, roast potatoes, parsnips, turnips, peas, carrots & stuffing balls....

 As always I've joined in with the wonderful At Home With Mrs M's #mealplanningmonday linky

Saturday, 16 March 2013

You know you're a 90's kid when...

I've seen tons of lists like this on the web and I love them....


 So....You know you're a 90's kid when...

You remember when it was actually worth getting up on a Saturday morning to watch Live&Kicking (you know the number - 0181 811 8181)

You remember the craze of YoYo's and Tamagotchis (and the subsequent banning of them in school).

You collected Pokémon cards.

You played and/or collected Pogs.

CBBC was The Broom Cupboard.

You watched the original Postman Pat, Fireman Sam and Ninja Turtles (back in the day when they were 'Hero' Turtles).

You remember Bum Bags, they weren't even cool then.

You always wanted to be on Fun House & the Crystal Maze.

2 words, Spice Girls.

You wanted lights in your trainers like the cool kids.

All the boys had their hair in 'curtains'.

"Wax on, Wax off." Need i say more?

Nike Air Max and Reebok Classics were 'must have' trainers (and Kickers for school).

You remember Mr. Motivator.

You had scrunchies in every colour and hair bands with your name on it in glitter.

You bought Smash Hits Magazine for the song lyrics.

Everyone owned something from NafNaf or Fruit Of The Loom (probably in grey).

You just cant resist finishing this... "Iiiiiiin west philladelphia born and raised..." 

You remember the craze, then the banning of slap bracelets.

Tammy Girl was where we got our cool clothes.

You had at least one Troll.

It's PJ and Duncan not Ant and Dec.

Chris Evans presented everything.

You had / wanted / hated Furbys.

You taped the Pepsi Chart Show.

They will ALWAYS be Opal Fruits, not Starbursts.

"If you like a lot of chocolate on your biscuit join our Club".

You remember Sony Walkmans.

You remember that "Hooch" was the original alcopop.

You wanted to / tried to make Tracey Island.

You compared football stickers in the playground "got, got, need".

Those were the days!!
 

Friday, 15 March 2013

Weird Ways To Raise Money!!

Today is Comic Relief day.....


 
The day when people do unusual things to raise money....My girls are having a non-uniform day at school & selling cakes & sweets with all the profits going to comic relief....All pretty normal unlike these things which people have done to raise money around the world....

Cow Pie Bingo..
The rules for this event, which took place in rural Vermont, are simple. You take bets on which square the cow takes a dump in then sit back (well back) and let nature takes its course. Ah the simple life.

Bieber Torture...
 Sadistic students at Evanston Township High School in Illinois played Justin Beiber's 'Baby' on repeat over the P.A. system until they reached their $1,000 target for their new café and arts centre. Unsurprisingly, they managed to reached their goal in three days.

Boob Art...
 The ladies of a small village in New Zealand turned their boobs into art to raise money for breast cancer, creating paintings that varied from pandas to cherries, Christmas puddings and bubble bees. Fancy doing your own? Paint your boobs/moobs and squish them onto paper plates, then try and make it look like something.

Spider lock-in...
Australian Nick Le Souef locked himself behind a glass shop window for three weeks for children’s charity 'Variety' with 300 poisonous spiders. They call him 'Spiderman' I call him 'mental'.

Naked Santa Run...
Over a hundred nearly-naked Santas ran through the freezing streets of Hungary dressed only in their underwear or swimsuits. Very naughty, not very nice.

Leicester man donates testicle to charity...nearly
When 24 year old Joe Cooper decided to get his pubes waxed in his local pub in order to raise money for his local hospital, little could he imagine he would actually end up there when a heavy-handed friend tore off six of his seven layers of skin. He nearly lost his...err...manhood but on the bright side, he raised £3,000!

 Friends'-a-thon...
What you did slowly over the years, Steve Misiura did in 84 hours as he watched 238 episodes of 'Friends' for charity. He documented the ordeal with a website and pictures and doesn’t he look happy?! Guess there's only so many times you can to listen to, "WE WERE ON A BREAK" before crackin

Sheriff gets tasered...
In South Carolina, Sheriff Leon Lott volunteered to be shocked with a taser every time $1,000 was raised for the Richland County Sheriff’s Foundation. A crazy idea, considering this guy probably has made a lot of enemies in his job and something he probably realised when one enthusiastic donor gave $2,000.

Whatever you are doing to raise money today....Have fun!!

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Baker Days Letterbox Cake - Review!!

Everyone loves cake right? 


We do!!....So when the lovely people at Baker Days asked if we would like to review a 'Letterbox Cake' for them there was no way I could refuse...

Bakerdays is a website that makes personalised cakes for any occasion their specialty being 'letterbox cakes' which they send and they fit through your letter box meaning no waiting in for the postman!!

Choosing the cake... 

This was hard....There is a cake for just about everything you could think of (over 500 designs) and if you can't find one you like you can personalise it with one of your own photo's and add words of your choice...

There are so many options...

Letterbox Gift Cake £14.99 - 4-5 portions.
Small Party Cake £24.99 - 8-10 portions.
Medium Party Cake £35.00 - 20-30 portions.
Large Party Cake £45.00 - 50-60 portions.

There are different recipes to choose from too...

Sponge Cake, Carrot Cake, Fruit Cake, Double Chocolate Chip Cake & Gluten and Wheat Free Cake!!

We chose Carrot Cake and waited for it to arrive....Which only took two days....I ordered it about 5pm Tuesday and it came Thursday which I think was very quick!!

When the postman came I head a thud and went running (I only run when cake is involved)....I was dying to get it open and see if it had survived!! It had!! Which I knew it would but I was still quite surprised....


The packaging was brilliant! I was very impressed with the strong box the goodies came in and inside the box a beautiful tin containing the cake (which I will be keeping and using for something else), a card saying 'Enjoy your Cake' & a few balloons, candles & party blowers which I wasn't expecting which is a nice little extra touch...Very thoughtful indeed!! 

So onto the cake!!

When opening the tin it had a lovely little paper tab to make it easy to get out...Which I think was a great help and it was covered in a cellophane wrapping...


The cake it's self looked lovely!! Not the biggest of cakes but as a quirky little gift for someone it is great....We managed 4 slices of it....Which was just enough for a piece each!!  There was just the right amount of icing....Not to thick or thin & I was surprised in how moist it was.....I don't know why but I expected it dry but it wasn't!!


Can you tell the girls enjoyed it :) 


I have someones birthday coming up soon who lives quite a bit away from me and I will be sending one of these cakes....I am really impressed with everything about the service, the choice of cake, the packaging & the cake it's self!! I can highly recommend BakerDays!!
 
I was sent this free of charge for my honest review....All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to BakerDays!!