Summer holiday thanks…

Summer holiday thanks…

I haven’t blogged much this year, but one thing I did want to document was how fab the summer holidays were this year… in more ways than one. Continue reading

DanTDM – YouTuber

DanTDM

I can honestly say, I’ve just had one of the most stressful half hours of my life!

True story…

Would you believe that DanTDM is a YouTuber – yes, that’s his actual job, it’s what he does (who’d have thought) and for those with children and tweens who are into, dare I say the word, Minecraft, they will know this young guy well I’m sure.

Just to put you in the picture DanTDM (don’t ask me what the TDM stands for because I have absolutely no idea) has 590k followers over on Twitter and over 10 million subscribers on YouTube *gulps* – now that’s a lot!

Stampy is long forgotten and these days it DanTDM all the way… MasterB even styles his hair on Dan’s and wants to go blue in the summer hols!!

Anyway the point of this is Dan announced his first ever tour earlier in the week and it’s all MasterB has been talking about since.

Looking at the dates, the only one we could make due to holidays was his last date in Milton Keynes, about a two and a half hour journey for us from home.  But I thought ‘what the hell, it’s something he’s excited about and can be an end of school year well done treat‘.

Little did I know the pressure I would be putting myself under!!!

The site was due to go live at 10.00am this morning and I was sat ready with my credit card to get straight on there and purchase the best seats I could possibly buy.

10.00am – site not live!

10.01am – site still not live!!

10.02am – site still not live – stressing now!!!

10.03am – site live!  Go, go, gooooo!!!!

I went straight to the Milton Keynes date matinee performance – SOLD OUT!  OMG what was I going to tell B?  I knew he wouldn’t believe me when I told him I literally got on the site as soon as it went live.  He’d think I was like blaaah blaaah blaaah bimbling around.  Aaaaarrrggghhhhh!

Quick thinking, made me look at the evening performance (the very last performance – is that what you call it, I have no idea?  I mean who ever thought I’d be buying tickets to go and see/watch a YouTuber on stage fgs?  What’s he going to be doing?).  No evening performance tickets left or VIP tickets (where the kids get to meet their hero with apparently a whole host of other cool stuff) – meanwhile I tweeted DanTDM (@DiamondMinecraft) in my panic and he replied with ‘VIP tickets sold extremely quickly!!‘ – you’re telling me!!!

Dan suggested trying the venue’s website directly for tickets as he believed they still had some left, so I swiftly opened a new tab and navigated my way around to find the show on the right day at the right time and …… Yippeeee I managed to nab myself TWO TICKETS in the stalls.

Woohoooo I cannot tell you the relief I felt.  I would be able to tell MasterB what a wonderful mother I was with my dedication to the cause and had secured two, not too bad, seats for DanTDM’s first tour!!!

Phewie!  A cup of tea was called for – had it been later than 10.30am in the morning I might possibly have poured myself a glass of Blush!

So Milton Keynes look out for us in August when we hot foot it up for the DanTDM first UK tour!

I will of course let you know how the DanTDM show/performance/thingy goes… but in the meantime if you tried to get tickets but didn’t manage to, my commiserations – I feel your pain.

Carpe Diem x

 

 

 

 

 

My Captured Moment #22

If you follow my blog you will know that I love linking up with Heledd who blogs over at Running in Lavender with her linky ‘My Captured Moment’.

This is where you link up with a photo or a series of photos that have captured a special moment in time – one or ones you haven’t and won’t ever forget.

It’s my favourite linky because it makes me think back to such special times and I always end up with a great big fat grin on my face.

I’ve missed a couple of weeks due to being away on holiday, but I’m pleased to be back this week with …

My Captured Moment #22

Barnaby on the train to London

Apologies if you spotted this one on my blog already, but it’s my absolutely most favourite pic of MasterB at the moment.

This was taken on his birthday as we were heading into London for a few days.

Here’s another taken at the same time…

Barnaby on the train to London 2

Oh man, can’t believe this gorgeous boy of mine is 11.

I’m so utterly proud of him each and every day and he makes my heart melt with love.

How lucky we are to have him.

I hope you like my extremely special captured moments this week.

Carpe Diem x

Running in Lavender

Half term – a birthday and trip to London

Apologies, but here’s a belated mini round-up of our adventures during MasterB’s birthday and half-term.

We celebrated young B’s 11th birthday in the morning with presents and croissants – Kipster had to help too!  Although it has to be said she was a little disappointed that none of these were for her.  She’s too used to receiving her own birthday and Christmas presents (spoilt pooch or what).

Kipster and the birthday presents

Once presents had been opened and the last bits popped in the suitcase we hot-footed it up to London for a three day break – although MrD hadn’t planned the timing too well, bearing in mind it was the Rugby World Cup semi-finals!!!  We were subsequently held up in traffic and diverted, but we arrived in London as excited as ever.  MasterB has been known to stand on the platform of the tube station and sigh ‘Ahhhh I’m home‘ – how scary is that – I just know my baby is gonna move to London the first chance he gets.

MasterB on the train

Oh my heart… my gorgeous 11 year old

It’s sort of become a bit of a tradition that during the October half term we head to London where we stay at The Grange Hotel, Holburn.  For us this is perfect because it’s so central to everything and you can even walk to Covent Garden from there.  The hotel is very nice and pleasant without being over the top and has the advantage of a swimming pool and spa.  The boys can go swimming first thing, whilst I enjoy a nice massage – – – everyone’s a winner!

We had planned to go to the London Film Museum in the afternoon where they were showcasing the Bond in Motion Exhibition with actual vehicles used in past and present films.

London Film Museum

I have to say it was really interesting seeing real life relics from the Bond films (including Bond’s passport) and MrD being a bit of a 007 fan was in heaven and enjoyed explaining things to MasterB.

James Bond car

We all enjoyed it very much and it’s definitely worth a visit if you have a chance.

We had a VIP tour of the Houses of Parliament.  A dear friend of mine (who mixes in high circles) arranged this for us and was conducted by a friend of hers, Stephen Benn.  Stephen took precious time out of his schedule to give us an amazing insight into what goes on and we were all fascinated by the ins and outs of parliament.  We really were very lucky indeed (Stephen  is a wealth of knowledge with dates, names and places at the tip of his tongue when recalling stories to us) but did you know you can arrange for your local MP to give you a tour of the HofP?

Houses of Parliament

We normally try to fit a show in whilst we are up in the big smoke and this time we were lucky enough to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  I have to say, it’s not my favourite show we’ve been to see, but it was enjoyable and the sets were amazing and the young boy who played Charlie the night we were there was brilliant – well done him!

We had meals out, including the Rain Forest Cafe, Piccadilly on MasterB’s birthday evening as his chosen restaurant where we enjoyed huuuge burgers and ribs.  They also made the poor boy stand on his chair whilst the whole restaurant sang happy birthday to him (embarrassed doesn’t come close!!).

We had cake…

cake

and enjoyed drinks in the hotel lobby after long days on our feet…

The Grange Hotel lobby

I popped in to Liberty of London (my fave store) with a couple of friends whilst the boys did Hamleys.  Again everyone was a winner!  I made a small purchase in Liberty, which I will share with you in a separate post – so look out for that one.

MasterB also attended a comic workshop at the Cartoon Museum where he was helped by a professional cartoonist to create his own character and a comic-strip.  He had great fun for a couple of hours, whilst MrD and I headed to the British Museum.

Look out for the Cartoon Museum’s workshops during school holidays, because it’s incredibly cheap and great fun for them to take part in if you happen to be in London.

On the Wednesday before we headed home, we met up with some other friends for frozen yoghurt (as you do when you’re in London) at fro-go and then headed over to the Shard.

frozen yoghurt

Having promised MasterB we’d take him up the Shard, but hadn’t had time before, we suggested a little trip up to Aqua, one of the bars on the 32nd floor.

This is a shot looking up at the Shard – it really is an amazing glass building.  And look at that sky for a November day too!

The Shard

Unfortunately, we just missed out on the last table (as children aren’t allowed to stand at the bar) and as we hadn’t booked, grrrrr, we weren’t able to stay.  But I did manage to get this shot before we left…

view from the Shard

How spectacular is that!  It’s fabulous up there and next time we will definitely be booking a table.

We crammed so much into this visit, we all came home exhausted.  Happy but exhausted.

London really is an amazing place – there’s just so much to see and do all of the time.  Every time we go we experience new things.

China Town London

It certainly was a birthday to remember for MasterB!

Do you like visiting London?  What’s your favourite place to go?

Carpe Diem x

Happy Birthday Barnaby

Happy Happy Birthday Barnaby!

Today is our darling boy’s 11th *big intake of breath* birthday.

Where did that time go?

He’s grown from this; a premature tiny babe

baby Barnaby

… to this; a strapping gorgeous 11 year old!

Barnaby Oct15

It’s so true when they say that time goes waaaaay tooooo fast and you have to make the most of each and every day – it’s so precious.

So today I am sending my love with special sparkles and the biggest hugs to my boy.  We are all off to London for a few days and I hope you have the bestest time ever.

Love forever

Mummy (soon to be known as mum I have no doubt) xxxxxxxxxxx

Carpe Diem x

Parenting – probably the hardest thing you’ll ever do!

Parenting

When you send them off to school having had words… how rubbish does that make you feel?

Reeeeaaaaally rubbish.

That thing with a tween when you ask and ask and A S K them to go finish getting ready and brush their teeth as they need to get going to school.

Yep – that.

Oh it’s so frustrating and annoying.

I don’t remember being like that, but maybe I was (I’m sure if my mum is reading this she’ll let me know) but there really is no sense of urgency – even at this age.

When does that kick in?

The thing about it is, it leaves you feeling so horrid.

And I’m pretty sure he feels pretty rubbish too.

It’s that pushing it and pushing it until I finally flip and shout!  I hate shouting, but sometimes it happens when I can ask no more and a switch is switched inside me and I lose it.

Then I feel eugh… and he feels eugh… we both feel eugh.

So the question here is, should all electronic equipment be banned from school mornings?  MasterB seems to have crept into the whole sitting and watching stuff on the iPad in the mornings.  Meaning he then puts off and off the going back upstairs to get read to get out the door! (that’s a shout-y voice by the way)

It’s something I’m considering because every single morning is the same and it’s tedious, it’s tiring and it makes me feel rubbish.

I’d love to know if you have to set ‘rules‘ for your tween on school mornings?

I love MasterB with all my heart, but boy oh boy can he be frustrating at times.

The good news is I can text him as he walks to school to let him know I love him and to have a good day.  Phew.  That makes me feel an incy wincy bit better, but there surely must be a better way.

This parenting thing sure is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

There, now I’ve got that off my chest, I shall continue with my day and await my gorgeous tween’s return from school … when we start it all over again.

Is it too early for Blush?

Carpe Diem x

My week in pictures #18

I’m here just a day late with ‘My week in pictures‘.

This is where, in a bid to take more photos, I set myself a little challenge to take at least one photo each day in an attempt to capture simple every day moments – those little moments that are sometimes forgotten and overlooked.  Sometimes the littlest things can actually turn out to be the most special.

I then choose one for each day and share them with you as a little peek into how my week panned out.  It’s my weekly visual feast.

I’m also over on Instagram where more of my daily photos appear – you can take a look at my gallery and follow me here if you like.

So here’s last week’s which commenced Monday, 5 October and photos go from top to bottom, left to right:

weekly collage

Monday:  MrD and I had a trip to West Quay in Southampton – strangely I was sat outside the men’s changing room in John Lewis!!  Make out of that what you will!

Tuesday:  Lunch at the gorgeous Stanwell House Hotel in Lymington – thoroughly recommended.

Wednesday:  Time for the autumn nails and scarves to make an appearance.  Loving this colour too.

Thursday:  MrD and I, oh and the pooch, had a gorgeous walk along the beach to Sandbanks.  The weather was great and I got some really nice pics on my phone – should have taken my big camera, grrrr!  You can read my a daycation to Sandbanks in Poole post for more pics.

Friday:  I received a Christmas bouquet from the lovely people at Prestige Flowers – yes you read that right, a Christmas bouquet.  Look out for a review post coming up on them soon.

Saturday:  My gorgeous MasterB who for once, let me take some quick (and I mean quick) snaps of him when out on a walk.

Sunday:  Ooops it was chocolates and a glass of good old Blush Sunday night whilst watching the tv.


Awwwww it was a great week all in all last week – MrD and I had some time off together and so it was all about spending quality time together.  Lovely – thank you.

Have a great week.

Carpe Diem x

Barnaby’s Sunday vlog #3

Ok, we’re on a roll… just up-loaded to my YouTube channel, here’s Barnaby’s Sunday vlog.

This is where each week MasterB, having kept on and on and on and on, has been allowed a small part of my blog to do his own thing… that’s when Barnaby’s Sunday vlog was born.

Here’s this week’s – I hope you enjoy it…

Love to get your feedback, comments and ideas for future vlogs.

Until next Sunday, ba ba!

Carpe Diem x

What I’ve learned being a parent to a nearly 11 year old…

What Ive learned as a parent to a nearly 11 year old

Parenting is an ever-evolving learning cycle.

You think you’ve cracked it, but little did you know the next big thing is about to hit you right in the middle of the face!  Boom!!  And off you go again.  Into the unknown once again.

As our darling MasterB turns 11 towards the end of the month, I thought I’d share a few of the top things I’ve learned along the way:

  • There is nothing as important as Minecraft!
  • You are embarrassing  just because you are his/her mother – end of!
  • Homework is a battle – get over it.
  • You should know where he/she has left his/her phone, iPod, iPad, headphones and anything else electrical that is used on a daily basis.
  • On a similar note, you should know to ensure that all electrical devices are fully charged.  How could you possibly not know to charge them just when they are running out of juice and wanting to be used immediately?!
  • There is nothing as important as Minecraft!
  • The door will always be shut and you should cough and perhaps even knock before entering.
  • You should definitely learn that putting your clothes in the laundry basket is a totally ridiculous unreasonable request.
  • Music CANNOT be played at a reasonable level.
  • If your tween has friends over, do not under any circumstances attempt to make a joke – in fact it’s best to avoid all forms of communication and just let them be.  A difficult one I know, but trust me it’s for the best.
  • Your tween will definitely know how to download stuff from iTunes and the internet better than you.
  • Do not under any circumstances question whether teeth have been brushed for goodness sake!
  • Be prepared for the same conversation or should I say moan, each and every morning (or night) when attempting to get him/her in the shower.
  • He/she will tell it as it is – if you’re not looking your best, be prepared to be told, if he/she doesn’t like your hair, be prepared etc etc!
  • Kisses on the lips – few and far between.  Absolutely make the most of them when they do happen; they are precious.
  • There is nothing as important as Minecraft!
  • Your tween is not old enough not to throw a complete and utter wobbler!
  • Although nothing-else in your tween’s bedroom/playroom is played with, touched or even looked at, the mere suggestion that the lot could be got rid of is ridiculous!
  • You will not be called mummy in front of friends or when out and about.
  • Enjoyable family time is a rarity and as such one that should be embraced wholeheartedly when it does occur.
  • Even though your tween is nearing 11, you should still attempt where possible to let them win at board games.  The sulking really isn’t worth anything else trust me.
  • There is nothing as important as Minecraft!

… and finally

  • There is nothing in this world that compares to the love you have for your child (no matter what age) and when you get that rare and spontaneous cuddle and/or kiss and even those words that melt your heart ‘I love you mummy‘ it makes everything worth while.

I hope you’ve found this useful.

Enjoy your day!

Carpe Diem x

Disclaimer:  this is by no means an exhaustive list… trust me.


I’m linking this post with You baby me mummy and Mum’s daysThe List‘ linky…

You Baby Me Mummy

I have nothing to wear… the A/W15 overhaul

A/W15 nails and scarves

Moving in to new seasons is all very well and good – apart from the fact that we’ve just moved out of of MY season and even that was a bit of a damp squid and very disappointing – but the problem is I’m faced with nothing to wear!!

So despite the fact I have a double wardrobe and a half and two drawers in our spare bedroom, two double rails, four large drawers and five cubby-hole thingys in our bedroom and two large baskets under the bed stuffed with clothes, I’m faced with going into autumn with not much to wear.  Or am I?

Summer is definitely my time of year.  I’ve said it before – I was made for the sunshine.  I love nothing better than having the beautiful sun on my face and this is when I definitely thrive.

Having said that, I also enjoy autumn.  Several special things happen in our family during the autumn months which make it an exciting time of the year; it’s MasterB’s birthday (11 this year, yikes) and MrD and my Wedding Anniversary (wow, 16 years) both in October.  I love the colours during this season, particularly the outdoor ones – watching the leaves turn those gorgeous red, orange and yellow colours.  They make for such fab photos too!

Autumn isn’t as cold as winter either, so that’s always a winner in my books.

Anyone who knows me or reads my blog regularly will know I LOVE scarves – a girl can never ever ever have too many scarves as far as I’m concerned and during the autumn winter months scarves form part of my capsule wardrobe.  I will always be seen with a scarf draped around my neck/shoulders… *dreams of new colour combinations that are needed*.

Anyway I digress…

I feel a bit of a detox coming on.

You know one of those clothes’ detoxes that make you feel lighter and happier and able to see more easily.  I think the time has come to be realistic about what items are in my wardrobe space, that, let’s be honest, are never ever going to be worn again.

I’m never going to be a size 8 again *sighs deep sigh* and so those tiny tops might as well go.  Those 12 pairs of jeans, that  quite frankly, even if I could get into them are likely to be the wrong cut, wrong colour, wrong length and a 100 other things.  So they might as well go in the detox black bin liner too,

But how hard is that?

Yikes, it’s going to be a hard one, but one that I know needs to be done.

To be honest with you, come each morning as I prepare to choose what to wear for the day, it’s a bit of a push everything to one side to try and see what’s hanging there that I can actually physically wear.  Not a great start to the day.

I guess I’m thinking/hoping that by carrying out a wardrobe detox I’ll see that I have in fact got lots of lovely autumn/winter clothes.  That fit and everything!

Wish me luck.

If not, then I feel a shopping spree coming on…

Do you detox your wardrobe?  How good does it make you feel?

Carpe Diem x

Barnaby’s Sunday vlog #2

Last week I mentioned that a certain someone in our household was desperate to have his own YouTube channel and as I wasn’t confident enough to do the whole vlogging thing, have allowed him a small piece of my blog to do his own vlogs.

Enter MasterB …

This week he was lucky enough to be invited out for the day with a friend of his to the BFX Festival in Bournemouth and so this week he wanted to vlog about that.

I sort of understand it all a little better now (I think) – I hope you do too after watching this…

Once again, this is all MasterB’s own work.  He wanted to put an intro and an outro (technical terms as far as I’m concerned!!) on it – he hopes you’re impressed?

Until next Sunday.

Carpe Diem x