True Brit

With the Olympics approaching fast and the Queen’s diamond jubilee just a few weeks away it’s time to get patriotic with your red, white and blue.
I’ve been collecting ideas on this theme for our jubilee party and my daughter’s Olympic birthday party.

First up is a gorgeous union jack dress from Next which you could team with these lovely sequined union jack pumps.

Also lovely is this Team GB sequin t-shirt, it’s a must on our shopping list.

My daughter is a big fan of the ribbon twirling gymnasts so we are going to be making some ribbon wands of our own, using red, white and blue ribbon of course.

click image to go to instructions on how to make a ribbon wand

Our medals are likely to be edible, I particularly like the idea of these biscuit medals, so easy to make to.

click image to go to instructions on how to make medals

Such a simple idea is these gorgeous summery red white and blue strawberries. Dip the strawberries half way into melted white chocolate and then dip the ends into blue sugar. (you can buy this in most big supermarkets in the cake decorating isle.)

Finally, for some more ideas on crafts, games, activities and entertaining please visit this fabulous blog, Red Ted Art

Today I’d Like to Rant About……

Michael Grove and his policy of turning schools into academies.
First I will put my hand up and say this is all new to me, I’ve not really given it much thought before and therefore I probably don’t know all the facts. However, what I have learnt I am angry about.
Two days ago my girls school found out they were to become a ‘forced academy’ They have no choice in the matter or in who will take charge of the school. This is because the school is considered a failing school.
Nothing could be further from the truth. My daughter started at the school in the nursery when the school was at it’s worst. The nursery was popular because it was one of the few in the area that offered full time places, but most of the little ones went on to different primary schools. I decided to keep my girl there because the new head teacher showed a lot of promise and her nursery teacher had become the schools SENCO as well as being her teacher for reception class. She blossomed and the school improved in front of my eyes. I had no worries about sending my younger daughter there a couple of years later, and at present I will be happy to send my baby son there when his time comes. The teachers are great, the school is approachable and you get listened too. I have had endless meetings with teachers and my girl gets all the extra help she needs with her disabilities. As for her school work, she has come along perfectly and is top of her class in most subjects.

So in my eyes the school is obviously not failing, but don’t take my word for it. The last SATS results showed that the school was deemed ‘good’ and the current ones show promise of an ‘outstanding’ So why is it being forced into an academy? Simply because the SATS results they are using are from 2005-2009 which were not so good. The school was brought from the pits of needing special measures, to possibly outstanding in just a few years. Yet, this doesn’t matter to Michael Grove.

The astonishing thing is, the school is not alone in this. It is coming to light that a lot of recently selected schools for forced academy status are actually improving by themselves. Could this be a ply? Think how good it will look for Michael Grove when it is shown that the academies are doing so much better than the schools where, when actually they were doing it all by themselves anyway. What happens a few more years down the line when the academies fail? It will probably be blamed on the area, the parents, the society in which the school is located. It couldn’t possible be because of being turned into an academy, could it!

Our schools head doesn’t want to take this lying down, although from records it can be seen that Michael Grove cannot be fought. His plan is to combine with two other local schools and become an academy with them; this way he regains some control over the school rather than have it taken over by some company. Will he succeed? I don’t know but I will back him all the way. There has to be some way to fight this.


submitted to 3 Children and It’s Oldies but Goldies, and now I’ve seen this I realise that maybe it’s time for an update. The school has had another Ofstead Report, a few other schools in the area have won their fights against forced Academy status, and our fight is continuing. So an update will be coming shortly.

Name and Number

Congratulations to Victoria and David Beckham on the birth of their daughter Harper Seven, born on 11th July at 7.55am and weighing 7lb 10oz. Welcome to the world baby Harper.

Of course already her name is under much discussion. Some comments from Twitter include, ‘it sounds like half past seven’ ‘at least she’s not named after a fruit’ and ‘when people were talking about Harper Seven, I genuinely thought it was a Dr Who spoiler..’

There are rumours that the name Harper came from a kids tv show, The Wizards of Waverly Place, which is apparently watched by her brothers, or it could be from the author of To Kill a Mocking Bird’ Harper Lee.

The name seven, which is not actually a name but a number (just thought I’d point that out 😉 was probably chosen for a *number* (he he) of reasons, she was born in the 7th month in the 7th hour weighing 7lb and David’s old shirt number was 7. Of course 7 is considered to be a lucky number so maybe they called it her for luck! I would like to know how she’s going to react when she finds out she’s their 4th baby, not their 7th!

My personal opinion – I like the name, I’m not so sure I would have chosen Seven (I could have done for my daughter born 27/07/07) but it does go well with Harper and it is just the middle name (how often do you use other people’s middle names?)I think they could have done a lot worse.

Review- Sainsburys Feed Your Family for £50 (plan2)

We started the Feed Your Family For £50 from Sainsburys at plan 2.
I love that all the ingredients are listed for you to put in your shopping basket, it’s so easy. You do have to remember to read the notes at the top of the page as all ingredients are listed as 1 and sometimes you need to buy more.

Now we are not an average family of four, we are actually a family of seven! That’s four adults, two children and a baby. So a little adapting had to take place, but that was easy enough. The shopping list came in at £75, but that also included tea, coffee, soft drinks, toiletries, cat food and a few little extra’s (like donuts!)

I was surprised when the shopping arrived, it seemed like loads. I’ve easily spent £80 before and not recieved nearly as many bags.

I liked the plan because it included breakfasts and lunches, I get so fed up of the same things day after day and until doing this I never felt motivated to try anything else. However, there are only two adults and baby at home most lunch times so again some adapting had to take place.

Mondays meals were muesli and banana for breakfast, Pate, tomato and cucumber sandwich and carrot batons for lunch and roasted vegetable with chicken and rice for dinner. I wasn’t too keen on the pate, it was a cheap version and you could taste it, but everything else was fine.

Tuesday was muesli and banana for breakfast, ham cream cheese and tomato sandwich for lunch….nb the lunches seem really simple when sandwiches and you don’t think to check the recipe, but this one states to have your sandwich with houmous and carrot sticks on the side and it’s easy to miss this and end up with an unused, and out of date, packet of houmous at the end of the week. Dinner was spaghetti carbonara and was big favourite in our house, there was plenty to go around too.

Wednesday was toast with peanut butter for breakfast, cottage cheese, grated carrot and rocket pittas for lunch (I wasn’t keen on the basic pitta breads and would buy better ones next time) and Sausage, tomato and cannellini pot with mash. (I will confess to not taking the sausages out of their skin for this recipe, but it was still really nice.)

Thursday was muesli and banana (again) (I had a bowl of shreddies instead) Salmon, rocket and red onion sandwich…one of my favourites…for lunch and Tomato, spinach and red onion frittata for dinner. The men complained there was no meat and we decided that sausages would go nice with this.

Friday was toast with peanut butter for breakfast, cream cheese and cucumber sandwich for lunch and tuna, mushroom and mozzarella bake for dinner, very happy with todays meals.

Saturday was sausages, mushrooms and tomatoes with fried bread for breakfast…at last sausages for breakfast, Toasted cheese bagueets and vegetable soup for lunch with a banana and sweet and sour chicken for dinner, not a big favourite but nothing really wrong with it, just a matter of taste.

Sunday was boiled egg and soldiers for breakfast, three-bean mackerel salad for lunch, ok big confession here, I still have the beans and mackerel in the cupboards as we were out at lunch time, but at least they will keep for a while. Dinner was roast pork with roast potatoes, carrots and broccoli for dinner. I had to add a serving of mash too because we are a greedy lot with our Sunday dinners. Then I made a carrot cake with the left over carrots because I’d not been reading the lunch time recipes and not having carrot batons with my sandwiches.

My Verdict.
The meals were nice and they were pretty good portions. We had to make a few adaptions but the little ones joined in too, baby was partial to the mashed up frittata. I found lunch times less boring and it was nice to know in advance what I was cooking each day. I would do most of the recipes again but not the sweet and sour as no-one really liked it.

I’m not really dieting at the moment but I do watch my weight, along with regular exercise I lost 2lb this week.

I did my shop online as I have no transport at this time, but you can also print off your list and take it shopping with you.

We are currently trying out plan 3 so please come back and see how we get on…you can follow this blog with the button on the right 🙂

What would you do to have a baby?

A Nottingham based woman is preparing to have a womb transplant next year in Sweden.
The womb will be donated by her own mother, now 56.
She has a condition called Rokitansky Kuster Hauser syndrome which means she was born without a uterus, she was diagnosed in her teens when she failed to start menstruating.

The surgery will take place in Sweden next year and then the woman will be able to carry her baby after she is artificially inseminated.

If it all works out she will be carrying a baby in the same womb that she was carried in!

It all sounds a little weird, but I guess it’s just like an organ donation. It’s sad when someone has a condition which prevents them from having children, I can’t imagine what that would be like, my children mean everything to me. I’m not sure how brave I would have been had I not been able to have my own children. I’d have probably been more for adoption and helping children in care.

Also, at the tender age of 44, after 5 kids and one miscarriage, I’m not sure my womb would be any good for donation, especially with it’s resident fibroids.

A little Note About Positive Reviews on Raisie Bay

A little Note About Positive Reviews on Raisie Bay

Some people only write reviews when things go wrong with products, which is good because it lets people know that there could be potential problems. I’ve also seen negative feedback with say things like, I had to return this item because the colour did not suit me…is this useful?

I write reviews on most items I buy because I like to give genuine feedback. If I have a genuine problem with a product I will write my review in the appropriate place.

I write reviews on my blog too, but they are mostly positive. Why? Because I only write reviews for the things I’ve loved. If I don’t love them I let the person who sent me them know with details why and then let them decided if they would rather me write a negative review or not write one at all. It’s always the latter.

This is my blog, my place and I’ll let you know about the things I love. If you want to find out what other people have hated about the product then you will need to look elsewhere.

My reviews may all be positive, but they are still genuine.