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Brainstorms Award

The Brainstorms Award was created by Nabeeha Jameel over at Brainstorms. This award is basically for all those bloggers out there, new, or old, who do a lot of work to keep their blogs alive and an interest for other people! Brainstorms Rules Thank the person who nominated you. Tag your post with #BrainStormsAward and… Continue reading Brainstorms Award

House fantasies

Himself won’t move house locally. He hates moving and throwing money on taxes and all the legal stuff and the moving and all the disruption. I get it. But I also don’t like my garden, it’s too small, and my feelings about the kitchen in this house have built from mild inconvenience to strong dislike… Continue reading House fantasies

Old Friends

Well, not old as in they themselves are old. More, long-standing…. While I was at my mum and dad’s during our summer holiday I managed to meet up with three very long-standing friends who I’ve known for very many years. Two who I met while we were in reception (kindergarden) and one who I’ve known… Continue reading Old Friends

Fenland Beauty: a prelude

I’m planning on writing something much more substantial than this, describing why I love the fens so much. In the meantime, I just wanted to share some photos I’ve taken recently of the vast skies and endless fields that make the fens so beautiful.



Hmm, so I just turned 40. Honestly, so far, it feels just the same as 39. I could write lots of things about how I was when I was born, when I was 13 or 18, 21 or 30. But, from my point of view, all those milestones are artificial. In fact, why am I… Continue reading Forty

I Believe….

A little while ago the lovely Bill from A Silly Place asked some folks about what we believe. It was a really interesting exercise in examining what I fundamentally hold to be true. Each person who wrote something for Bill had something different to say, each one individual and reflecting a unique perspective. We’ve all… Continue reading I Believe….

Kindle and mug of tea sitting in the sun

July 2021 Reading

I’ve decided to do a monthly round up for everything we’ve read each month. Himself focuses on science articles and forums and news, so he’s not getting a section – books only! Large boy His reviews are getting briefer and briefer. Sorry about that. The Boy Who Grew Dragons by Andy Shepherd He really enjoyed… Continue reading July 2021 Reading

Truck loaded and ready to go

Holiday Time 2021

You know that feeling when you’re on the cusp of going on holiday and the relief and anticipation are both running high? Well, that’s where we are right now. I’ve been winding down at work all week, packing, planning, himself has been booking things, and just preparing ourselves to get away. We are all SO… Continue reading Holiday Time 2021

all the bags and shoes ready for back to school

School’s Out 2021

Wow, that’s it. The last day of school for the 2020-2021 school year. And what a year it’s been! From the countdown last September, through an almost-immediate COVID scare, Christmas and another round of home learning, more school holidays in lockdown over February half term, and then back to in-school learning (thank goodness). The boys… Continue reading School’s Out 2021

Imperfect lupin with raindrops

Different is Beautiful

Some time ago I wrote a post about beautiful imperfections. Recently, my thoughts are travelling along a similar path. There are some fairly well-defined traditional ideas about what is beautiful: blondeness, being thin with big boobs, sunny days, lush green grass, orange sunsets, spotless cars, rhyming words, clear skin, a straight nose, big blossoming flowers,… Continue reading Different is Beautiful

Silverstone campsite at sunset

Turning Away

Some time ago I was feeling upset about the idea of being judged by other mums – you know the way we do sometimes. I told my lovely friend S (I’ve mentioned her before) and she said something that’s always stuck with me: “If they don’t like what they see, they should turn away.” Her… Continue reading Turning Away

Kindle and mug of tea sitting in the sun

June 2021 Reading

I’ve decided to do a monthly round up for everything we’ve read each month. Himself focuses on science articles and forums and news, so he’s not getting a section – books only! Large boy His reviews are getting briefer and briefer. Sorry about that. Toto the Ninja Cat and the Great Snake Escape by Dermot… Continue reading June 2021 Reading

Elephants are for the wild and conservation projects, not for birthdays

Somehow 6

It’s time to look back again and wonder, baffled, how small boy has arrived at another birthday. It was the same last year. The time seems to just fly past so quickly. What’s more, he’s grown and grown up so much in the last year. He’s very nearly 120cm tall, sprouting about 7cm in the… Continue reading Somehow 6

beautiful sunlit trees at Delamere Forest

Not a birthday

Well, I faced it again. 17th June wasn’t baby boy3’s birthday and I made it through. No toddler joyfully screaming, running amok, smearing cake everywhere, overtired and spoiled by their family and friends. No midnight wake ups or relief at sleeping through. No teething drool, no funny ways of saying new words. No adjustments to… Continue reading Not a birthday

Sunset over the sea

A week in Whitby

In the world before 2020, who would ever have thought that we could be so excited about a week in a small, quiet seaside town? Well, in the event we’ve been counting the weeks and days ever since we booked it. A little cottage, plans for eating fish and chips, hunting fossils and generally mooching… Continue reading A week in Whitby

Smelly Socks & Garden Peas in the sand

A Little Break

We’re off to Whitby today for the second week of half term. As in, actually going on a holiday! Away! So, to make sure we all really enjoy this first opportunity for adventures and fun in almost 2 years, I’m going to just put the blog down for a week. I’ll be back next weekend… Continue reading A Little Break

Kindle and mug of tea sitting in the sun

May 2021 Reading

I’ve decided to do a monthly round up for everything we’ve read each month. Himself focuses on science articles and forums and news, so he’s not getting a section – books only! Large boy His reviews are getting briefer and briefer. Sorry about that. House of Hades and Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan Yeah,… Continue reading May 2021 Reading

Trailing cucumber on my office windowsill

Veggies 2021: Reset

I love growing veggies. In previous years, I’ve tortured himself, colleagues and neighbours with a surfeit of courgettes, almost ruined the foundations of an oil tank with rhubarb and produced cucumbers into October. In recent years, since we moved up North to a house with a North-facing garden, I’ve had less luck. I’ve tried growing… Continue reading Veggies 2021: Reset

The dazzling blogger award

Dazzling Blogger Award

Helen at Crispy Confessions very generously nominated me in the first ever Dazzling Blogger Award. I love her blog, she’s honest, open, funny and varied – my favourite combination! The Official Rules Thank the person who nominated you for The Dazzling Blogger Award. Link back to the original blog post. Answer the seven questions that they… Continue reading Dazzling Blogger Award

Scouts camp at home badge

Back to Scouting

I was lucky enough to be involved with guiding from when I was 7 until I was 17. I joined Brownies and them moved onto Guides and eventually Young Leaders. I didn’t keep going when I went off to university, but all the non-school related experiences and friends I got to have through guiding have… Continue reading Back to Scouting

Kindle and mug of tea sitting in the sun

April 2021 Reading

I’ve decided to do a monthly round up for everything we’ve read each month. Himself focuses on science articles and forums and news, so he’s not getting a section – books only! Large boy Percy Jackson: The Last Olympian, The Lost Hero, Son of Neptune, and The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan Yes, he’s… Continue reading April 2021 Reading

Saying goodbye

Yesterday was my gran’s funeral. I don’t want to say anything particular about losing her, but I wanted to share the reading I did during the service. God’s Garden (by Katie Evans) God looked around his garden, and he found an empty place. He then looked down upon this earth, and saw your tired face.… Continue reading Saying goodbye

running shoes

My running playlist

While out running at the end of February, having a totally awesome run, just feeling fantastic and enjoying every step in the early spring sunshine, I reflected that the music I was listening to (and singing along to the choruses) had a huge effect on my enjoyment of the run. Music while running So, first… Continue reading My running playlist

home working set up, two monitors, laptop, printer, lots of mess, water bottle and jumper

Exciting and scary

I haven’t written a work post for a very long time. I’ve just been bumbling along for quite a while with no major events beyond the usual daily or weekly frustrations of my team. Anyway, a thing happened today. First, let’s back up for some history. I happened to edit a particular “career path” form… Continue reading Exciting and scary

Six feet

A Little Joy

It’s the Easter holidays. On Good Friday we asked the boys what they wanted to do. As well as various requests for Scalextric tracks and Monopoly, large boy said he wanted to see his grandparents. Trying to meet up with himself’s parents for the day is kind of hard as we live 8 hours apart.… Continue reading A Little Joy


Himself at 40

The last couple of birthdays for the boys I’ve written a post about who they are and how they’ve grown and changed. Himself has just faced a big birthday, so I figured I’d give him a similar treatment. He probably won’t like that because I’m likely to get soppy and write nice things about him.… Continue reading Himself at 40

Our Easter Treats

Our Easter Treats

I’ve got to admit that we’re all about the modern day festival of chocolate and treats at Easter. We aren’t religious, occasionally forget pancake day (don’t even call it shrove Tuesday) and we don’t give things up for lent. That said, we also try not to focus too much on the edible treats. Easter in… Continue reading Our Easter Treats

Kindle and mug of tea sitting in the sun

March 2021 Reading

I’ve decided to do a monthly round up for everything we’ve read each month. Himself focuses on science articles and forums and news, so he’s not getting a section – books only! Large boy The Fowl Twins by Eoin Colfer I was very impressed with how large boy coped with this. Its a 7.5 level… Continue reading March 2021 Reading

My Instagram Favourites

My Instagram Favourites

Instagram was something I knew nothing about when I started blogging. I’d been deliberately steering clear of it – all the chat about “insta perfect” lives really put me off. I thought I would end up looking at other people’s pictures and feel like I didn’t live up to some imagined standard. Facebook competitive parenting… Continue reading My Instagram Favourites

People wearing masks, being sensible and staying safe

Keep Adapting

I started writing this post in response to a comment on my post about throwing a lockdown birthday party. I wrote a couple of paragraphs and then decided that it was a bit overkill for reply to a simple “the kids have missed out on so much” sympathetic comment. Here’s the thing, COVID is shit.… Continue reading Keep Adapting

A to Z of me

A to Z of Me

I’m kind of jumping on the bandwagon here. I’ve seen some cool posts from Tom, Michelle and Em lately, giving a lowdown about them using a nifty alphabetic categorization. You can see their posts here: The Doubting Thomas Boomer Eco Crusader Echoes of Em So, I thought that I’d give it a go, not least… Continue reading A to Z of Me

Caption "Lessons in Loss" above clouds low in the sky at sunset

Lessons in Loss 8: Grief is Just Love with No Place to Go

Today’s post comes from wonderful Rachel from Jasperden Health. Do take some time to visit her blog, its a wealth of information on healthy foods and their benefits, personal experiences, and lovely recipes. Grief is Just Love with No Place to Go Thank you, Smell for inviting me to write a post about loss. I… Continue reading Lessons in Loss 8: Grief is Just Love with No Place to Go

Will it be you?

Thirty thousand is the price to pay Lives worth less than money Less than “freedom” Less than convenience But who will they be? Will it be me Will it be you Will it be someone we love Will it be someone unknown whose loss precludes a life bringing change and wonder Are our lives less… Continue reading Will it be you?

Blue Scooby

Scooby Memories

We recently said goodbye to our second Subaru Impreza. Himself has had a long history of affection for scoobies, so he’s going to help write this post. He’s a self-confessed petrolhead, long since a member of various web forums, lover of Top Gear and The Grand Tour, huge consumer of motor racing autobiographies, and if… Continue reading Scooby Memories

Sunlight piercing through green trees

Small Joys Tag

Even with all the challenges of 2020, Christmas is a time to be joyful. A big thank you to Michelle from Boomer Eco Crusader for tagging me in the Small Joys Tag. This is a fun tag where I get to share 15 things, and 5 bloggers, that make me happy and bring joy to my… Continue reading Small Joys Tag

Silverstone campsite at sunset

Silver Linings

Tens of millions infected. More than a million dead. Businesses crippled. Nearly everyone’s lives upended in ways great and small. All because of COVID-19, which made 2020 a terrible year even for those of us lucky enough to have not been personally touched by the virus. But as we enter 2021 — with all the… Continue reading Silver Linings

Silverstone campsite at sunset

Here comes 2021

A year ago I wrote my first looking forward post to 2020. After the awful, disastrous year we had in 2019 I didn’t ask for much. I’m not making resolutions – I just want 2020 to be less painful than 2019 please. Please. And, well, 2020 was certainly a rollercoaster but it wasn’t as painful… Continue reading Here comes 2021

Vibrant but imperfect sunflower

Finding Weakness

Or “I’m not as strong as you think I am” We all see post and self-help articles, memes and books, every day that tell us we are strong, that we are stronger than we believe, that we can find our inner strength in adversity. Well, here I’m talking about the opposite. Sometimes we do find… Continue reading Finding Weakness

Silverstone campsite at sunset

An ode to my pyjamas

In the days before, when things weren’t strange Pyjamas were bedtime attire, Useful and needed for warmth in the dark Keeping us cosy in the cold of the night. . But hiding indoors away from all people In isolation, quiet and calmness or chaos Grasping for connection and missing old faces, We’ll take any comfort.… Continue reading An ode to my pyjamas

Christmas Tag

Some Christmas Tags

The Christmas Tag The wonderful Undaunted Adventure has created a lovely new Christmas Tag to share some love between us bloggers. I’m totally thrilled to be nominated in the kick off post. Then a little while later the fabulous Chehak at ChehakChirps and the lovely Gemma at This Brit’s Life tagged me too. The Christmas… Continue reading Some Christmas Tags


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