Monday, 30 April 2012

Holiday giveaway!!!

Hi Folks,

I come to you bearing gifts... Big, shiny, lovely gifts.  Actually when I say gifts plural I mean one gift... I come to you bearing gift... But its a good one.  In fact as gifts go.. its a doozy!  Is that a word?  My mum used to say it.  Come to think of it - that doesn't necessarily prove anything - My mum has been known to invent the odd word in her time..
"SKIP TO THE END!"  I hear you say.."Get back to the gift bit.. we dont need to know about the dictionary according to June!" (June is my mum's name ) "you can tell us about that later.."
Ok! Ok - the gift:  Its a holiday... No word of a lie.  A real, live, honest to goodness holiday.  
Its for four people staying in a caravan from Monday 7 May til Fri 11 May (the dates and location are non negotiable) - all you have to do is get yourself to Park Resorts  Withernsea in the good old East Riding of Yorkshire.

What do you have to do to attain for yourself this lovely shiny vacay?  You have to become a follower of my blog (if you arent already) and leave a comment on this post.   Existing followers - just leave a comment.   If you do these two simple things I will put your name into a hat from which I will draw the winner - its true - I actually have a hat set aside for this very purpose. 

I have got some more giveaways in the pipeline - Keep watching this space

So my lovely existing and new found blog friends... What are you waiting for?? Your deckchair is calling you......

Speak soon

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Just lately things have been difficult in our household. Money is extremely tight as I'm sure it is for so many others with the current economic climate being what it is. We have had to forego a lot of things and find new, more cost effective ways of doing others. Weekends had ceased to be a time to kick back and indulge ourselves and had become a time to batten down the hatches and clamp down on all spending.  I'd lost interest in the house and couldn't motivate myself to do anything crafty or creative. And I think that in all of the worry and our own little austerity measures we had forgotten to live in the moment or enjoy anything let alone each other and the simple things in life.

In the evenings we would gather together for a feverish round of 'Put Your Hands Upon Your Knees'
Sometimes you can start to feel differently even though nothing has really changed.  In the last week or so Ive started to draw and create again and I'm starting to feel positive and, dare I say it, even excited about what the future will bring.

Ive started to sketch again \0/
 I'm constantly cooking up plans for different parts of the house and I've started to tweak things and rearrange and primp and, in essence, love the house again.

This week I've repainted and made a new seatpad and seat cushion cover for this chair
I have no idea why or what kick started me once more because the situation is just the same as it was but somehow I feel better able to cope with it.  And it has to be said that when I'm being creative (regardless of the quality of what I'm producing) I do feel better - more like me. 

We had an idea that we would wake early as a family on saturday mornings and collect firewood together.  We have a wood burning stove and this is one way that we can spend quality time together and save money - as it means we dont have to fork out for fuel.  There is always a plentiful supply of freshly fallen timber in the three woods that we are lucky enough to have on our doorstep.  Its gentle exercise for us - an adventure for Alex and we can take the dogs for a run all at once.  Plus it means that we get the weekend off to a good, early start and can make the most of our time.  Its like killing six or seven birds with one stone - which you've got to admit would be a pretty neat (if not barbaric) trick.  So.. that's exactly what we did (collected wood - not the bird massacre)

There's something romantic about going out to collect wood for the fire.  Its like the Brothers Grimm fairy tales that my mum would read to me as a child - but with a happy ending and minus the decapitations...
I had cooked an improvised kind of chili (without kidney beans but with added courgette) so that we had hearty comfort food waiting for us when we came home.  Is there anything better than coming home to a good meal??

Not forgetting something sweet and sticky for afters:

Chocolate and peanut butter refrigerator cake

got a bit gooey when we cut into it but I can assure you that the taste was not impaired - sleep well my friends
We got all the housework out of the way first thing.  And I had spent friday night cleaning and rearranging my kitchen dresser (rock & roll!) as it had gotten very dusty and cluttered with things that probably had no business being on display (animal character plasters, dowel rods and false nail glue anyone?)

I love it when my dresser is in order.  Its just so nice to sit at the kitchen table and feast my eyes.

Do you like this little fella?  Alex made him at our local mum's and tot's group.  They paid for each child to paint one porcelain ornament and have it fired at a local pottery as an easter gift.
 This is me trying to take a picture of.. me in one of my recent creations: my button mirror.

Union Jack to celebrate Britain hosting the Olympic Games 2012
 After lunch - I decided to do a little baking...

Do you like this idea?  You've probably already seen it elswhere in blogland if youre an avid blogger.  I got it from the impossibly perfect Cherry Menlove's blog.  I think she is one of my newest girl crushes. 
 Finally I could sit down with a cuppa and a cake and stare with vacant wonderment at my dresser.  I dont know why I do this or why interiors and crafting have become like a kind of porn for me.  I have a subscription to an interiors magazine and when it arrives I hyperventilate a little bit and I make furtive little plans to squirrel myself away with it and drool all over the glossy pictures.  I know, I know but I cant help it!

Anyway... all in all it has felt like we got a lot out of our weekend so far.  I'm looking forward to tomorrow...
The reward for my baking endeavours...

I hope that you're enjoying a productive weekend and if not productive - then - a happy one. 

Bye for now folks..
Speak soon XxShellxX

Thursday, 19 April 2012

The Dinner Game

1. Don your Armour (in this case a blue bib)
Excited jumping is optional

2.Choose your weapons
choose any two of the above

3.Snake your way up the 'game board' from bottom left eating as you go
Hidden treasure covered on top row

 4.Eating 'unlocks' the hidden treasures at the top of the 'board'
from bottom left: cucumber, carrot, broccolli, cream cheese, farfalle pasta, chopped tomato, olives, feta cheese, banana, apple, marshmallow, chocolate
 5.The aftermath...
The pasta was replenished twice

I'm not a nutritionist so I'm not saying that this is how the tray should be layed out exactly.
I realise that there wasn't any meat and not an awful lot of carbs on there but he'd had rice crispies for breakfast, toast for 2nd breakfast and breadsticks for a mid morning snack.  He's making homemade salami pizza for tea... I'm not concerned.    I converted this from an idea I found here and I couldn't wait til monday.  The lady herself is called Michelle and what can I say... there's a pattern forming here: Awesomeness.  Just check Michelle Lorenzen's blog out as proof.  The author is my cousin and she's also called Michelle and she's cray awesome you guys.
Anyways.. gotta go lean against a wall and click ma fingers n be cool folks.
Later Daddio