Archive for February, 2013

As a child, I used to love reading and had lots of different books, from Enid Blyton to Roald Dahl.

It’s always the way though, that you end up discarding some much loved books or they get misplaced over the years, so I’ve recently started to re-buy some of the old ones I had as a child.

It’s great to read about the midnight feasts at Malory Towers, with the lashings of ginger beer, and strange concoctions they used to put together such as sardines and peaches and giggle round the moonlit pool while the teachers all snore away in their rooms.

Or go on a magic journey to the top of the Faraway tree, with Silky, MoonFace and the Saucepan Man.

There’d always be a different land at the top of the tree each time they went up. Some nice, some not so nice.

The one thing I have noticed on re-visiting these old books though, is that when buying them, you have to be careful that you are getting one of the original books that haven’t been tampered with over the years and re-written.

Yes – some, in their infinite wisdom and need to be all politically correct, have changed stories around, edited them and changed names.

So instead of  the little girl being called Fanny, she’s now called Frannie.

Dame Slap, who was one of the less desirable characters from one of the Lands at the top of the tree, got her name for slapping children in her care.

In the modern re-prints, she’s known as Dame Snap who just raises her voice and has rather a nasty shout.

I mean, come on.


I don’t agree with changing books in order to come over all politically correct and ‘with the times.’ Yes, some aspects of the stories are sexist (Anne from the Famous Five being told that she couldn’t chase adventures as she was a girl, so had to stay home and make tea for them all instead), or nods towards corporal punishment in the form of Dame Slap.

Why should it be changed though? It might have some outdated ideas in there, but that’s the way the world was when they were written.

I don’t want to read sanitized, cleaned up politically correct versions, thank you very much.

I used to read lots of Enid Blyton when small, and I haven’t turned into a racist, sexist corporal punishment lover as a result.

Leave the books alone for future generations, as it’s a peek into past times.

Should we airbrush history?

What do you think?

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It’s half term here this week, so we’ve had a little mini break holiday sightseeing for a few days in the Big Smoke (also known as London.)

Setting off here in the North was fine, and we got there with no problems.

Typical, though, that the one day we’re due to travel home there’s a huge power failure with trains travelling North all cancelled.

So, if like us, you got stuck, delayed and cancelled on your journey home yesterday, you can blame me….. I’m a travel jinx.

We managed to fit in loads of sightseeing in the few days we were there, though.

We saw the ravens inside the Tower of London:

raven tower bridge

As well as lots of beautiful, sparkly jewels, crowns and tiaras but obviously no photos of them are allowed to be taken for security reasons.

This bloke may have had something to say if I’d have tried and I didn’t fancy risking upsetting him:

On guard!

guard at tower of london

So I’ll just say they were very pretty, and I bought myself a nice sparkly tiara type hair pin from the gift shop. 🙂

We went on the London Eye for a birds eye view of London and the Thames (I managed to ignore the fact we were so high up in the air to have a good look around and take some photos:)

Big Ben from the Eye

big ben from the eye

Boats along the River Thames

eye -river thames boats

Buckingham Palace from the Eye

eye - Buck Palace

Apparently her Maj was in that day. You’d have thought she would have come out with some Earl Grey and a plate of cucumber sandwiches for us hungry tourists. Ah well….. nice house, anyway.

I’m going to have to go on another sightseeing tour soon, just to try and fit in all the other things we didn’t get chance to see.

The small people are desperate to visit M&M World again anyway. Four whole floors of chocolate? They thought it was Christmas.

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According to today’s newspapers, the latest idea being bandied about to crack down on unhealthy food in schools is to ban packed lunches.

So, now not only are we being told we can’t put chocolate in packed lunches, and they’re not allowed juice either, (which is the policy in our school) now they’re discussing banning packed lunches altogether?!

How are they going to enforce that one, then? Who’s going to pay for that idea? As I know I’m not about to start forking out £20 a week on two lots of school dinners.

Do they come round and force you to pay, as if you don’t your child gets no dinner?

We’d need everyone to get it all free, for a start, as if you’ve more than one child in school it costs a small fortune.

It’s also patronising and insulting to assume that every parent needs telling what to put in their child’s lunch box, and are incapable of deciding for themselves what is and isn’t healthy.

I know what’s healthy, thanks.

They have a wide range of stuff in their lunch every day – wholemeal sandwich with some protein in, such as chicken or tuna, a piece of fruit such as an apple, banana or satsuma, a yoghurt and a home-made flapjack or bun for dessert.

If there are people out there daft enough to pack their children up with just a chocolate bar and nothing else apart from a bottle full of undiluted squash (which is the reason we’re not allowed juice, apparently) then surely it should be taken up with them?

Not blanket banning the lot of us from things as we can’t be trusted to think healthily and make our own choices.

Nope, it’s not going to work. Unless they’re prepared to give everyone free school dinners.

What do you think?


Article in the Telegraph here








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The MADS Blog Awards is an annual Blogging Award ceremony that celebrates all the thousands of great parenting blogs out there.

I just wanted to write a post to say a huge thank you as I have been nominated in five (yes, FIVE!) different categories, so that must mean there is actually people out there voting for my blog and not just my Mum. (Thanks, Mum. 🙂 )

I’ve been nominated in the following categories:

Blog of The Year

Best Family Life

Best Blog Writer

Best Schooldays

and Best Family Fun

so thank you very much if you’ve voted for me!

If you haven’t, I’m going to point you over that’away >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> where there’s a little “Nominate Me, Please!” badge (because I’m subtle like that) and ask please could you vote for me in any of these categories (or all of them if you’re feeling very generous today.)

I’d love to get through to the next stage.

If you click on the badge, it’s a magic one that takes you to the nomination form.

Thanks for getting me this far, it’s much appreciated! Yes, and you too Mum.

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Although I might not feel it in my head, it’s been a long time since I left school (yes, I said a long time, let’s leave it there – that’s all you’re getting.)

Then every now and again something pops up to remind you that you’re really not and you’re a bit of an old crone instead of 15.

In my case, this revelation has come about from the organisation of a class reunion as this year is a significant one in the school leaving stakes.

Cue lots of pictures on Facebook of your old class, and one of the Maths teachers, who I could have sworn was a lot older than that, looked considerably younger than we all do now. *cries*

It’s weird seeing pictures of yourself and classmates younger, as in your head that’s the way they all still look.

It’s just the class teachers who seem to have some type of time machine or anti ageing cream or something.

Will it be strange seeing everybody all so called ‘older?’ Or will they all look the same?!


Would you or have you ever been to a school reunion?


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When you give birth to little babies and become a parent, nobody expects you to close all the curtains, and cut yourself off from the world until your baby turns 18.

You don’t have to shun all friends and refuse to take your small person out with you in case he gets cold, or some germ ridden flea bag decides to sneeze all over them or (shock, horror) dares to tickle them under their chin and coo over them.

You’d think though, that some parents would have a little bit of common sense and if they want to go out partying, they’d leave their baby at home.

You’d think it would go without saying really.

One mum, however, has hit today’s newspapers by taking her four month old baby to a rave with her.

No, no, don’t worry, he had ear protectors on.

The mum argues that she has done nothing wrong, she needs him to be with her, and can’t leave him with babysitters as he is breastfed.

Well, yes,  that’s fair enough, he needs to be with you when he’s breastfed.

If you’re breastfeeding though, surely you’d think that there’s some places that aren’t suitable for a baby, and there’s some places that you can’t feasibly go to?

That you have to miss out on some places if you’re not willing or able to leave with a babysitter?

Or is it all about what we want to do as the parent, and not what’s best for the baby?

As I personally would have thought that the best place for a four  month old late at night is tucked up safe in his cot, not surrounded by party goers, alcohol, and loud music regardless of whether he’s wearing ear protectors or not.

What about the bright lights?

Or maybe that’s just me.

What do you think?

Right – or wrong?

Baby’s at rave….

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walton stream

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