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Every year, our primary school has escaped the madness that is Book Day dressing up, and has just had a lovely book fair in the school hall instead.

(Any excuse to buy new books is fine by me.)

This year, however, in their infinite wisdom, they’ve decided to follow the other sheep (sorry, schools) and have said that the children are to dress up.

Yes, I know, I KNOW it’s all a bit of fun, and I need to lighten up, but that doesn’t stop me doing a big internal scream and sweating a bit at the mere thought of having to think up a costume.

Making things isn’t my ‘thing’. Words are. So, I will not be joining the ranks of the Alpha Uber Mummy Brigade and hand knitting my own costumes, or indeed spending a shedload in a mad panic at the local fancy dress shop.

If you’re like me, what you need to do instead is decide what you DO have in and they go as a character from that.

Luckily for me, we’re all Harry Potter bonkers here, so we already have a Gryffindor scarf and a wand. A pair of round glasses purchased from Poundland and a lightning shaped scar on his head and voila, he’s Harry Potter.

We’re sorted, he’s happy and all for the princely sum of a pound!

If you’re still wondering what to do for World Book Day, here’s some other easy, lazy, cheap (take your pick) ideas:

Girls:

The Worst Witch

Have you got any Halloween costumes kicking about? If you’ve got a witches dress and hat, you can go as Mildred Hubble from The Worst Witch series.

Pippi Longstocking

Another dead easy one. A pair of colourful stripy tights and a frock, and hair tied into plaits. Sorted.

Boys:

Where’s Wally?

Stripy red and white t-shirt. Ta-da.

Just William

Hey, they don’t even have to go in anything but uniform here. Just have some knee length trouser shorts (get raiding the summer uniform wardrobe) and sling a satchel over their shoulder.

(Don’t forget a cap as well.)

Next year, hopefully it’s back to the book stalls again…..

As a child of the Eighties, I’ve been left feeling a bit giddy that one of my favourites, Dangermouse is being brought back to life and to a new generation of children.

Originally voiced by Sir David Jason, the new version sees Pointless game show host Alexander Armstrong taking on the voice of the super mouse, and the late Terry Scott (his sidekick Penfold) is to be replaced too.

Apparently Superted and the Clangers are to make a return as well.

There’s always the worry that ‘new fangled’ versions of old favourites will be messed around with too much, so it will be good to see what the new episodes bring.

The 80’s had a glut of brilliant children’s programmes, and here’s just a few more I’d bring back!

Remember any of these?!

Bagpuss

A saggy old cloth cat, but Emily loved him.

Fraggle Rock

“Dance your cares away, worries for another day…”

Raggy Dolls

“It’s not much of a pretty life, when you’re just a pretty face, just to be whoever you are is no disgrace…”

Bananaman

“When Eric eats a banana…”

These were just a few of my favourites, and would love to see these brought back to the screen. Not necessarily re-made, just brought back in all their original glory!

What was your favourite children’s show, and are you in favour of them making a comeback  or should they stay in our memories?

As a busy parent, it’s sometimes hard to find 5 minutes to yourself, but when you do it’s nice to just sit back and relax, doing things YOU want to do for a change.

When the peace and quiet descends, it helps to have a hobby or a favourite pastime.

At the moment, my top 5 things to do are…

Reading

I’ve always loved to settle down with a good book. Although I tend to have the concentration span of a gnat lately and need to get back into some proper book reading, and not just magazines and newspapers.

Social media

Of course. Where would I be without Facebook, Twitter and my blog? Probably rocking in a corner somewhere, that’s where,

Making wine charms

I’ve never been particularly crafty. In fact, you could go as far to say I’m pretty crap at making things. After all, I’m the person who made a box in high school, picked it up and all the sides promptly fell off. Gah.

I have found a speciality thing to make though, which I am GOOD at. Oh yes. (Maybe because it involves wine?!)

Making pretty charms to go round the stem of wine glasses so that you don’t get your drink mixed up with others.

There’s something quite therapeutic about making these.

wine charms butterfly set

Writing

My most favourite thing of all. Whether it be thinking up ideas for short stories, boring everyone half to death on my blog, or wittering on over at Twitter, Facebook, or other random places flung about the internet, I’m always writing.

Going to the cinema

I also love going to the cinema. Although it doesn’t happen as often as I’d like, due to the fact that you have to practically re-mortgage your house every time you go just to be able to afford the damn tickets.

What’s your favourite pastime?

I’m joining in with the Prime 5 linky over here

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you’ll be aware that a little film called 50 Shades of Grey is all the rage in the cinema.

Billed as ‘mommy porn’ (barf) it brings spanking, domination and basically lots of bonking to your screen.

Now, if you can’t get to the cinema to see it as you need a babysitter, it doesn’t matter as you can take your baby along with you to a special screening.

Yep, you read right. The Barbican in London in a moment of madness decided to screen a mother and baby screening this week so you could drag your baby along to watch it too.

As presumably, there’s nothing more of a turn on than a cinema full of screaming, puking, babbling babies and rampaging toddlers.

Not to mention it’s hardly suitable material for them to be exposed to.

Have they gone stark, staring mad?!

They seem to be pandering to a new parenting twist – “I have baby, I’m a parent, and baby is an extension of me and I have to take it absolutely everywhere with me.

Why does my life have to change just because I became a parent? If I want to see a soft porn film, baby can come with me.”

How about waiting until it comes out on dvd and seeing it then, if unable to get a baby sitter?

Sometimes it’s not always about what YOU want, and what’s best for the child has to kick into force instead.

Common sense, people, and less of the entitled attitude.

What do you think?!

Newspaper article

After what seems like months of sub zero temperatures, spring has finally shown its face this week and reminded us that it is just around the corner.

You forget how lovely the sunshine can make everything feel, and how it can brighten things up just by casting its rays onto buildings and footpaths.

Not to mention lifting of  moods. Now with the promise of spring in the air, why not get out and about and blow away some of the winter cobwebs?

It doesn’t take much to get out there, and money isn’t a problem either. Fresh air is free.

How about one of these?

Go on a nature walk.

You don’t even have to live in the middle of the countryside for this one. (Although it’s even better if you do.)

Write a list of things to find and get the children to tick them off as you do it.

Eg:

– how many different types/shapes of leaves can you find?

– different twigs

– pine cones

being just a few examples.

Climb a tree.

A classic, traditional children’s activity. Find one with nice sturdy, low branches and you’re sorted. Hours of fun if my children are anything to go by. They’re always happiest when they’re let loose to run and jump!

branches to climb

Whatever you decide to do this spring, get outdoors and get discovering…..

moat bridge

down steps

It’s half term this week, and so far we’ve been ice skating, been out for lunch twice, been to the local soft play, and a forest where we collected pine cones and did a spot of tree climbing.

pine cones

In other words, we’ve done something pretty much every day this week. Today though, we’ve just had a day in of doing precisely NOTHING. Nothing organised, nothing doing.

Since when were kids lives so micro managed as they are now? We’re always expected to be DOING something, and there’s never just enough time to relax.

There’s always football practise to go to, swimming and Beavers and whatever club is on after school.

They’ve actually forgotten how to be bored. Being bored is GOOD,sometimes. I’m not Entertainment Manager, you are your own people and you don’t need me giving you ideas on what to do every five minutes.

It’s good to be bored as it makes you think for yourself what you want to do,. You’re making your own decisions, using your imagination, and learning to think for yourself.

Plus, it’ll make you appreciate the days you DO go out a hell of a lot more!

Next holidays, I’m making a stand and not arranging half as many days out.

We’re having more days of leaving them to it and making their own entertainment.

Who’s with me?!

I

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