First Birthday of the Year

It turned out to be quite a busy week last week. Well, busy in my terms anyway, compared to not doing very much at all.

I had to go out and buy my first born some birthday cards which is always a task. Do you think I can remember how many siblings he has and which card will be appropriate for each one. You may think it easier to take them to choose their own, but I think I’ll pass on that and get them myself. Cards purchased I decided to pop into nearby M&S to buy a birthday cake. The choice was not brilliant and despite us being a large family, I couldn’t really justify buying a cake for sixteen. What I did buy was a chocolate tray bake which looked really nice, and was already cut into portions so no arguing over who gets the biggest slice.

I also popped into Boots to look for something a little extra for my son and discovered that they had a lot of their Christmas gifts on sale for half price. So I stocked up! I’ve got a few family birthdays in the next three months so that will save me loads.

I really enjoyed the shopping trip. It’s good when we go somewhere newly built because they always accommodate wheelchair users, sliding doors and no steps are such a bonus that walkers take for granted. The only problem I did have was that it was so cold I lost all feeling in my legs. It was a struggle to get back in the car afterwards.

The Birthday!

My son’s birthday arrived, but his birthday present didn’t. I’d ordered him a really nice gift online over a week ago and it didn’t turn up in time. I don’t like late presents, I believe that everyone should have gifts to open on their birthday and not have to wait, even if the gift is worth waiting for. I had however, stocked up on some gifts on the previous days shopping trip, so he had some to enjoy. Then when his main gift arrives it will be an extra treat.

As it was his day he decided that he wanted us to go out shopping so off we went again. Thankfully the weather was a little kinder which meant I didn’t suffer so much, but after spending two hours walking around he still didn’t buy anything.

We got home, picked the kids up from school and then it was time to go our for our dinner. He’d chosen Frankie and Benny’s for his treat. The restaurant is only a few miles from our home but as there are seven of us and our car is a five seater, we had to order a taxi. But, no-one wanted to go in the taxi (well apart from the Little Man who thought the car looked like a Lamborghini) so an argument was brewing. It was sorted eventually though and we all arrived at the restaurant at basically the same time.

a soda float drink in the foreground with a little boy tucking into his dessert behind it

The food took ages as the restaurant was very busy. It seemed every five minutes the lights went down and they played Happy Birthday to someone while taking them a cake with candles. My son would have walked out if I’d arranged that for him, thankfully I know better. In fact we had a poll while we were there, Boo, Star, No1 Son and Eldest Daughter said ‘no way,’ but me, Graham and the Little Man said we would enjoy it.

We all enjoyed our meals, with everyone ordering something different which just goes to show how difficult I find it making meals that please everyone at home.

Going Home

Then it was time to leave and to stop the argument with the taxi again, Graham said he’d make two journeys. He took the girls home first while I stayed with my two sons. We waited for the bill (ouch!) and then walked over to the arcade that was in the bowling alley opposite. As soon as we were in there I was reminded of summer holiday camps. The kids love nothing more than walking around amusement arcades playing all the games and trying to win toys from the grabber machines. We were not in there long though, Graham was back and looking for us.

When we got home the birthday boy went in first and the living room was in darkness apart from the candles on his cake. Then the girls jumped out and yelled Happy Birthday! He’s not one for surprises but this was so lovely I think he really liked that they had thought to do it.

After all that we had eaten, do you think we could manage birthday cake? Of course we could!

The Aftermath

It had been a couple of really busy days and I’d been out two days in a row. I had to pay the price, my body gave up completely and I spent a whole day doing ‘absolutely nothing!’ I always feel guilty, like I’m deliberately being lazy, but I have limitations, and boy do those limitations hit me hard.

By the next day I was feeling more rested and able to move a little. But, when I get knocked down like that, I worry about doing anything that will make the pain come back.

Thankfully, I’m feeling much better now and ready to face the week ahead.

January

So, January is almost over, but Christmas seems like it was a lifetime away. I’m one birthday down already, and the rest of the year is laid out ahead. So much to do, so much to see, so many new friends to make. How can anyone feel depressed in January when it’s a whole new beginning?

Now, I’m longing for Spring and warmer weather. I want to see flowers and leaves on the trees. I want to feel the sun warm my bones. In my Autumn years I’ve turned into a Summer person. All my life it’s been the cold weather that I’ve loved, brisk walks on chilly days, playing in the snow, early days and wrapping up warm. But since I got sick, feeling cold is really not an option because it hurts so bad. So, I long for the heat that I once shied away from, just because it feels better.

Are you a winter or summer person?

Mix It Up Linky
Debs Random Writings

My Sunday Photo 28th October 2018

Halloween

my two girls dressed up as witches when they were much younger, the photo has been turned to black and white and distressed.
Hubble bubble toil and trouble

It’s Halloween week and we are on half term, yay! On Monday we are going to a local farm to pick our pumpkins and carve them in a special workshop. Here is our photo from last years efforts.

a line of my three children with their carved pumpkins with a purple witch.
Pumpkin carving at Becketts Farm

The kids are planning to take their own templates this year to carve. I think last year was the first time they carved alone, I’ve usually done most of the work. I don’t mind but it can be hard work and the mess is horrible. So I’m glad we’ve found somewhere to go and do it, we just bring the carved pumpkins home so no mess, and the kids will be provided with all the tools needed and assisted with their carving.

Here’s Some I Made Earlier

Three carved pumpkins lit up in the dark.
Three carved pumpkins

I’ve a big feeling that the templates will be pokemon ones as that’s what they have requested for me to carve in the past.

I don’t think we will be doing much this Halloween. The kitten has to go in for his pre-op in the evening so the kids will have no-one to go trick or treating with. We will probably have neighbourhood kids knock on the door so I’ll have some treats ready for them. 

My kids have not really enjoyed dressing up for years now, the Little man is only eight, but he’s never enjoyed dressing up, even though he’s had some fabulous costumes like The Gruffalo and Scooby Doo. So, we’ll leave out the costumes for this year. Maybe we’ll celebrate with a kid friendly spooky movie like Casper and some Halloween baking treats. 

Here are some Halloween baking treats we’ve made in the past.

Pumpkin and Orange Cake

Meringue Ghosts and Chocolate Sweet Cake

Night Terror Torte

Toe Nail Dusted Sweet Cakes

Photalife
Sunday Snap

My Sunday Photo 29th July 2018

Birthday Cake

 

I used to love baking and decorating cakes, but now it looks like Boo has taken over my job. She was determined to do the decoration for her own cake so I let her.

First she made the fondant rabbit. I asked her if she wanted help and even gave her a step by step guide, but she preferred to do everything herself.

I baked and iced the cake but left everything else to her. The only thing I had to help her with was the grass, I showed her my clever little trick with a sieve. I wanted to pipe her name on as I know this can be tricky, but she wasn’t having any of it, I think she did a good job.

The Birthday

Boo turned 11 on Friday and we didn’t have a party. To make the day special we invited her best friend to tea and let Boo help with the shopping. They ended up with Fake KFC drummers and chicken strips, pizza, mini sausage rolls and mini cheese and onion rolls. For afterwards there was macarons, party ring biscuits, mini angel cakes and, of course, birthday cake.

We lit her candles on the cake and her friend carried it in to her while we all sang Happy Birthday to her.

They then played in the garden in the sunshine before it was time for her friend to go home.

I didn’t make a video of Boo decorating her cake, but here’s one we did last year of her decorating a Valentines cake. She definitely has a talent.

 

Photalife

 

Sunday Snap

 

My Daughter’s 10th Birthday Dog Making Party – updated

Earlier this year we reviewed some cuddly toy making kids from Splodge Teddy Parties. The girls really loved them so I decided I would buy a pack for Boo’s Birthday party.

I let her choose which ones she wanted, she could have had unicorns, dragons, zoo animals, there is so much choice. Eventually she settled on Dogs. I decided to get the 8inch ones because that was the size we reviewed and they were perfect.

The box arrived with all the unstuffed dogs. Just before the party we put each dog in a bag along with the stuffing and a birth certificate. I kept back the little hearts to give to them at the right time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When all the children had arrived at the party I gave them all a bag and they were thrilled with their dogs. We settled down to stuff the dogs, the girls found them easy, it was just the Little Man and his friend that needed a little help. When they were almost stuffed I gave them all a heart to kiss and wish on before placing inside their dogs. The animals are so easy to fasten, there is no sewing involved. the stuffing goes into an internal bag and that is closed with a pull tag. Then you close up the dog by the velcro strips. The stuffing won’t come out if the velcro is undone, it is safe inside the bag.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the girls had stuffed their dogs they chose names for their dogs and then filled in the birth certificates. Then they coloured in their bags, we turned this into a competition with the best coloured bag winning a prize, which was also dog related.

Party Food

It was then time for the party food, we had cheese and ham baps, pizza slices, sausage rolls, crisps, party rings and chocolate fingers. There were also some little cupcakes that my girls had baked and decorated.

When the food was devoured, the girls had one final task. They each had a plain iced cupcake which they had to write on their dogs name with writing icing and then decorate and add a little candle.

Just before the end of the party we presented Boo with her birthday cake, a big chocolate dog, and sang happy birthday to her before she blew out her candles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a lovely day and I think Boo was really happy with how it all went. The dogs were a big success and each child was able to take home their toy in their bags.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I just can’t believe that my little girl is ten years old already!!

I bought the dogs myself from Splodge Teddy Parties. I’ve not been asked to mention them in this blog post but I’m doing so because I think they are great!

 

Word of the Week – Cake

Yesterday it was Boo’s 10th birthday, my little girl is growing up fast.

She watches loads of cake making videos and as her party involved making stuffed dogs she decided that she would like a dog cake. We looked at loads when we eventually agreed on one that she liked and I felt I could make.

Since I got sick I’ve not been able to make cakes like I used to. For one, I can’t stand in the kitchen for long periods of time. Also, my hands and eyes don’t work like they used to. It makes me sad, but I always like a challenge, so I challenged myself to make this cake for Boo.

chocolate dog cake

At Boo’s party we made the stuffed dogs which was fun, then the girls each had a plain cupcake to decorate in celebration of their dogs birthday. I also gave them a little candle for their cakes but they were a little rowdy so we decided not to light the candles.

dogs birthday cupcake

Star and the Little Man also wanted to help so they made some cupcakes and decorated them with buttercream and chocolate chips for the party.

So, this week has not only been all about Boo’s birthday, but about the cake!
What word sums up your week?

The Reading Residence

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.