Archive for October, 2012

As you’ll all already know, we don’t really DO Halloween in this house, with no trick or treating and prefer to just have a spooky tea instead to amuse the small people.

This year, however, we have actually been out and about as we got invited to a Halloween party of someone in the 5 year old’s class.

Instead of handing out sweets to trick or treaters, we’ve been:

– apple bobbing

– chocolate apple making (toffee apples but with chocolate and funny faces rice paper mouths/eyes on instead)

– eating lots of party food

– admiring the flashing disco lights

– and making and colouring masks.

It made a nice change to be out. I’ve actually been to TWO Halloween parties, ever, now.

This was my first children’s one, and I’ve been to an adult one as well (so this time I had to be sensible 🙂 )

So, next year, we’ll have to plan on being out for Halloween again. At least it meant we got to miss nearly all the trick or treaters….

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For the past two or three years, me and the two small people have enjoyed finding small toys and packing as many nice things we can find into a shoebox.

Why? Well, because every child deserves lots of nice things to open at Christmas, and a sparkly wrapped Christmas box full of goodies is one way of spreading a bit of cheer.

We usually start by buying things from around September onwards, things they like to play with in this house. Stuff like:

-bouncy balls

– felt tips

-writing paper to draw on

– sheets of stickers

-toy cars

-cuddly toys (ssh don’t tell the eldest that I’ve let his cuddly toy obsession out – yes, he still loves all his teddies 🙂 )

-big box of sweets (always a winner)

We’re finding it more of a challenge this year though as we’ve decided to do a girl box (previously we’ve always done a boy box.)

Challenge because with a house full of boys, I’m finding it a lot harder to imagine the kinds of things small girls would like to receive.

I’m used to boy toys!

So far we’ve got:

-The obligatory big box of sweeties to scoff

– felt tips

-little notepad

– a ball

– some toiletry type stuff like a face flannel

er, and that’s about it.

There’s still time to get cracking though, as boxes can be taken to your local drop off point between November the 1st and 18th.

Now I suppose I’d better get wrapping the box up in sparkly stuff and adding more lovely things to it….

If you want to know how to go about putting together your own Christmassy shoebox, visit the website here to find out suitable ideas of things to put in, and where your nearest drop off point is… ShoeBox Appeal

Or make one online if you want to get involved and make your own, but just don’t have the time…. Shoebox World

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The school holidays are approaching (what, AGAIN?!) and Halloween is looming so this week has seen the small people’s school partake in several ‘spooky’ activities. Instead of normal literacy work in the smallest class, one morning saw him reading and spelling ‘spooky’ words such as ghost, or whatever, and doing wordsearches.

The school has all donned costumes or masks for Halloween instead of their usual school uniform, and there’s been a”Halloween Fun Evening” after school which basically involves a load of different stalls such as tombolas, guess which drawer the sweets are in, and a lot of crying parents at the thought of being wheedled out of their cash at every turn.

The eldest was happy today, as halfway through the class the headteacher came through the door with a big box of posh chocolate biscuits, and pronouncing that he’d won it on the raffle.

Apparently he nearly fell off his chair with giddiness.

(I’m sure I’d have been the same, to be fair.)

So, that’s it after this week  – a whole week off. Let’s hope they don’t moan they’re bored five minutes in, otherwise I might have to torment them with Halloween spiders and bats and things… 🙂

Has your school done anything “Halloweeny?” Or are you like me and not fussed either way about Halloween so not bothered if they hold Halloween fun evenings or not?! 🙂

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It’s that time of year again when in the writing world, people are gearing up for NaNoWriMo, or if you’re a blogger, NaBloPoMo.

If you don’t ‘do’ writing, you’ll wonder what the chuff I’m going on about and think I’ve forgotten how to speak English and now sound like a drunken Tellytubby instead.

I considered NaNoWriMo last year (National Novel Writing Month) then realised there was barely enough of a novel inside me yet to fill the pages of a children’s book, never mind complete 50,000 words in the space of a month. Yikes.

As for NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) I can do that. That’s where you write a blog post every day of the month for the whole of November.

I write most days anyway.

Would I want to write every day for the sake of it though? What if some days I’ve got writers block and my brain  refuses to squeeze out a single word, never mind a full blog post’s worth?!

I’d have to write a blog post regardless, and any old crap could spout out. What do you mean, it does anyway? Hmph.

I think it’s a great idea. I just don’t know if I’d want to blog every single day knowing I HAD to blog every day.

Quality over quantity, or quantity over quality? Or can we have a nice mixture of both?!

I’ll soon find out come November the 1st if I do it…

What do you think, and are you taking part in either of them?

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I might not do trick or treating, but I do enjoy the occasional spooky film around this time of year.

No, I don’t mean the slasher/gore type stuff and watching people like Kreuger. What’s the attraction seeing blood and guts and stupid people get murdered?!

Stupid because there’ll be no-one around in the film house and they’ll hear a noise and wander around saying things like “helloooo? Is there anybody there?” while peering round corners and into wardrobes when if they had an ounce of sense they’d stop farting about with the wardrobe doors and just get out of there.

I can think of plenty of nicer films to watch.

THIS was more my sort of thing… it still is now

comedy scary witches:


Yes, it’s The 1980’s Worst Witch film with the great Tim Curry and a VERY cheesy song 🙂



Or how about Teen Witch?

Cheesetastic, but brilliant, used to love this film!



Are you like me and prefer the cheese and inoffensive comedy scares, or the more gruesome?

If you can remember any more Halloween type films, feel free to refresh my memory! 🙂








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Tomorrow the small people won’t be in school as it has been classed as a “Progress Day” and therefore they get the day off as the teachers are too busy conducting parent/teacher interviews.

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I was at school it was always an after school thing. It was plonked onto the end of a random Wednesday, or Thursday or whatever and after a hard day mooching about at school you got dragged out again with your parents to hear Mrs Jones drone on about how you were doing fine/needed to switch your ears on more and listen/generally keep on doing as you’re doing and get on with your work type crap.

Nowadays they manage to make a whole day out of it. Sheesh. I’d have LOVED that when I was at school. It’s an extra random holiday day tacked on, isn’t it?!

If I’d have been told “Off you go out and play for a bit, just make sure you’re back in time for the five minutes we have up at school later,” I’d have thought it was my birthday or something.

They’ll no doubt be in their element as they don’t have to go to school and instead can just stay and boot a football about outside instead.

Never mind the whole day long thing, it’s a parent’s EVENING. Giving it a fancy new name and tarting it up doesn’t make it any less so…. 🙂



(I’ve now included this post in the rant fest link up over here)

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Bloggers from far and wide have joined forces to highlight the success stories that have come out of programmes and projects funded by British Foreign Aid.

Saturday, 6th October saw several bloggers set off for Ethiopia with One.org to see first hand the good that has come out of international aid. You can read about that here.

ONE isn’t a charity. It’s basically raising awareness, and asks for voices, to recognise the good things and the potential still there.

For those who haven’t gone travelling, they are asking for voices for awareness, in the form of blogging, and social media.

I’ve decided to join in with the ‘It Only Takes One Mum‘ link up, which is in the acronym style poem.

Here’s my effort!



Over hyper, full of beans

Noise and laughter everywhere

Eardrums splitting, windows shattering

Mum reaching for the earplugs

Usual scene in this household

Motherhood is great but LOUD.

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It might be only October, but already in this house I have small people poring over the Argos catalogue and putting rings round everything they like and then doing their ‘bestest’ letter writing to Santa.

(That’ll be just about everything in there, then.)

At least they’re at an age where they’re  happy with anything really, as long as it involves having shiny paper to rip off on Christmas morning.

The 5 year old the most, as when asked what he would like for Christmas, answers with “a present, please.”


The 9 year old however hears about all kind of new fangled, magical things via the wonders of the school playground.

“An X Box, a mobile phone, a racer bike, and a PS3, please.”

Um, that’s a lot of paper rounds then, son. Better start on them now and you might be able to have all that by the time you’re out of your teens, then. 🙂

No, he’s alright really, and is happy with his lot.

What I can’t be doing with is the Must Have Christmas Toy Lists that the shops trot out every year.

Apparently every child NEEDS some bog awful looking doll like a Cabbage Patch Doll, just because the big toy shops SAY SO.

Says who? The people in the shop because they know if they create enough fuss and hoo ha over them, they’ll have hordes of parents scrapping over the last few a couple of weeks before Christmas?


How about letting the child choose what they want from Santa without being told what’s the next big thing?!

I don’t want to be told what is the thing to be buying, and that I should be mad panic buying a wind up hamster or something.

I don’t do mad panic buying at the shops very well.

I end up looking like a mad relative of Worzel Gummidge, just minus a spare change of head when I can feel mine about to explode.

Some nice calm things like this in the stocking instead:


a nice juicy satsuma


some chocolate coins


then a bit of this in mine:



Merry HicMas. 🙂

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