While I am by no means a successful or well known blogger, I have been on the scene for just over 2 years. In that time I have picked up tips and information that has proved invaluable. Its time to pass on that knowledge.
Make yourself known
Blogging relies on virtual word of mouth, you could write a brilliant post only for no one to read it.
I hope my tips are helpful and not too overwhelming. Feel free to bookmark this page and use it as a checklist or reminder while working on your blog or contact me if you need help.
Do you have any tips you would like to share?
Last Sunday Jack went for a sleepover at his Nanny’s and what an adventure he had.
While we were enjoying hot cups of tea and scrummy egg and bacon butties he filled his days playing with his cousins in the garden and going out with his Grandad.
Unfortunately it chucked it down for the whole of Monday but my Mother in law tells me Jack wasnt fazed, and spent all day shadowing his cousins and insisting they watch Peppa pig with him, over and over.
By Tuesday the weather was slightly better and Nanny took all four boys swimming. Jack loves water but he doesn’t like getting changed into his swimming trunks or getting out the get dry, this time however he threw a fit because he couldn’t follow his cousins into the boys changing room. Instead he had to follow Nanny into the girls and continued to scream the place down until he was dry and dressed and back with his cousins.
After a quick lunch to refuel the 4 of them were off the aviation heritage centre in East Kirkby, Lincolnshire with Grandad. East Kirkby is the home of a Lancaster called Just Jane, as well as many other aircraft and vehicles. There is also a visitors centre where you can buy a taxi ride up the runway in Just Jane and learn more about her as well as a memorial chapel to remember the fallen.
I have to say I am slightly jealous as I have always had a fascination with the battle of Britain aircraft, mainly the Lancaster and this year marks the 1st time in 50 years since 2 Lancasters have flown together. Thumper from RAF Coningsby (part of the battle of Britain memorial flight) and the only other flying Lanc in the world, a Canadian Lanc called Vera. Just Jane doesn’t have her airworthy certificate but still sends shivers down your spine when she taxi’s down the runway.
As this year marks the centenary of the first world war, I believe it is incredibly important to teach the next generation about the sacrifices made so they never have to live through those sort of horrors.
Jack certainly got a taste of history during his visit, seeing not only Just Jane but also a Dakota which is a Normandy (D-Day) and Arnhem (Market garden) veteran having flown in the conflicts, as well as other vehicles.
We spent our Tuesday taking a lazy wander around Boundary mill, enjoying having all the time in the world rather than trying to juggle 100 different things. We looked in the toy section for dinosaurs (J’s new obsession) but at £15 for a hand sized toy they were certainly too expensive for my tight budget. Every time we got to Boundary mill I have to pop in the garden centre to look at the tiger oscars.
I used to have one who we rescued from a dirty disgusting tank and nursed back from the brink of death. I named her Luna, short for Lunatic because she attacked everyone else but me, she even tried to savage a workman who was plugging something into the extension lead near her tank. She had fin rot and worms when she came to me and after a lot of hard work she returned to full health and full naughtiness but always had a soft spot for me and would nudge my hand until I stroked her.
I had to stop myself taking all the baby oscars home but luckily I had my hubby with me to keep me grounded, if not I’d have a house full of fish by now. While in the garden centre we spotted a stand full of RAF battle of Britain merchandise and to my delight they had a pocket notebook with a Lanc on the front (coincidentally the aircraft J was looking at around the same time), perfect for all my blogging notes.
On Wednesday my baby was home and within 20 minutes of being back had already asked for his favourite snack (apple and cheese) and when I gave it to him he said “thank you, love you”
Then he saw me cleaning the floor, asked for the mop and started mopping for me.
The rest of our week was spent playing indoors away from the rain and cold wind. We played airplanes (and Mummy didn’t duck in time, ouch), read stories and used his mega blocks to build the tallest tower we could.
Today we’re off to my mums for Sunday lunch along with my Brother, sister in law and 2 little nephews. A busy, excitable, scrummy way to finish off a fun packed week for J.
So Jack is staying over at Nanny’s house tomorrow night and here are just a few things I’m looking forward to:
A hot meal, all to myself without having to share.
A fresh cup of tea, not one thats been nuked in the microwave 3 times.
Monday morning snuggles with your daddy, without your cheesey feet in my face.
A hot bath and a dry bathroom afterwards.
Reading on my kindle, for the first time since the Christmas holidays.
Going to the loo, on my own and without an audience.
Being able to walk across the room and not having to dodge train tracks, cars, stuffed toys and mega blocks.
Watching Bones back to back.
Swearing, like a trooper if I want to
Hold a conversation with your Daddy and hear every word.
But most of all I’ll be missing you xx
This week marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of britain’s involvement in WWI.
Unfortunately I know nothing about my great grandparents and their involvement in the war and the only people who knew ,(both sets of grandparents and my dad) are no longer with us.
However my fiancés family do know at least know the name of a family member involved in the war.
Edward Osborne (My fiance’s great grandfather, Pop’s) fought in world war 1. He never spoke of his account of the war so we simply do not know where or when he fought. But honestly who could blame him, the horrors he saw and experienced I’m sure none of us would want to relive.
As his son said (my fiance’s grandfather), “The men who talked about their exploits in the war, rarely did so”
While I respect the fact that no one who lived through the war wanted to talk about it to their families, it is a shame that their personal stories die with them.
I have no idea of what either of my great grandfathers did or even if they survived the war. I believe it is incredibly important that, if we can, we remember the sacrifices made on our behalf, so that we can enjoy the freedom we have now.
WW1 was known as the Great war, the war the end all wars but unfortunately it wasn’t. If ever we needed a reason to remember the fallen, the veterans and those still serving then learning from our mistakes should be it.
As a mother myself, I can only try to imagine the pain hundreds of thousands of mothers across the globe (allies or axis) had to endure upon receiving news of the demise of their husbands or sons.
I also believe it is extremely important that we educate our children about the causes, events and consequences of all wars.
While trying to research about my great grandfather in law I stumbled upon an excellent site – The great war 1914-1918
This site provides an overview of the First World War battlefields on the Western Front by showing you where they are and what you can see there today. Established in 1998, the website is dedicated to the memory of 20 family members who served in the military during the Great War of 1914-1918
Not knowing much about WW1 than the facts in general knowledge, I have spent most of the day reading about the timeline of events and the Western front on that site. There are so many personal, heart rendering stories that you can’t help but read any you come across, even though you know they will leave you in tears.
Impressively the site also has a section with educational resources for teachers and details of how you can trace your family history and even medal records.
There is so much fantastic information that I myself haven’t explored it all yet.
Trying to get my head around the names of battlefields and what happened when with whom I have started reading Horrible histories – Frightful first world war. I know it is written for children but the book outlines the events so simply I can get my head around them and ultimately teach them to Jack when he is older.
While I will not stand in his way if he decides in the future to join the military, I hope I can instal in him that war is nothing like call of duty and it is not only his own life that will be affected.
This has been a difficult post to write but one I felt I should write, if simply out of respect for the sacrifices made. I am extremely grateful that I am able to bring Jack up in a relatively free world, where he can enjoy things these young men never got the opportunity to.
In closing I will leave you with one of the most sobering and poignant images involving WW1.
The unknown soldier.
Another week gone and another roundup of the adventures of the small one.
With the heat wave continuing at the beginning of the week, I once again had the challenge of keeping at least a pair of pants on my son. Most of the time I failed miserably, but at least he was dressed if we were out in public. He did however strip the minute we were home but in a way I am glad he did as it made potty training less messy.
Jack has a lovely pink hippo pool/sandpit, that was given to him by a friend of ours last summer. Its just the right size for Jack but as I found out not big enough for mummy to squeeze in too :(
No matter, we had an impromptu water fight instead. I love spontaneity when it comes to days with my boy, much to his daddys annoyance when he saw how much water we had managed to throw in the house by accident, whoops.
The next day we spent cooing over the firemen that had stopped across the road (for different reasons ;)). They were installing a free fire alarm but Jack being a 2 year old boy nearly wet himself over the fact there was a “Friengine” outside. He did me proud by holding mine and his Daddy’s hand as we crossed the road, then asking the firemen very politely if he could have a look inside.
The lovely lads from the Lincolnshire fire department were kind enough to let him have a little look and put the lights on for him. His obsessive appetite for all things that go was satisfied (if only for a brief moment) and my tired boy asked to go back home to his den for a nap. He did get a little upset that this meant he had to say goodbye to the “Friengine” but as we got back across the road the firemen pulled away and every single man aboard waved to my boy.
I must admit I did get a lump in my throat from the massive grin that appeared on his face at that moment. Just goes to show how important their job is, not just in fire rescue and safety but also by implanting those important life lessons in our children. When playing with his fire engines Jack always says “ouch, hot” because he knows fire is dangerous.
I know, I’ve turned into a real softy since having J and get tearful watching him laugh at a cartoon. Dont get me wrong I am by no means a pushover but I suppose after a tough childhood I was scared to show weakness of any kind.
Since having the little bundle of love, hugs and stickiness that is my boy, I have lost the need of hiding my true feelings. I cry on Christmas morning, on Jacks birthdays and lately when he told me he loved me for the first time. In fact he ended up crying because Mummy was crying and Daddy just raised an eyebrow and supplied the tissues.
My lovely next door neighbours have a grandson who is 9 and sometimes pop round with toys they have held on to but no longer need. This time they came round with a little desk and an electric car for Jack, all for free as they wouldn’t accept payment of any kind.
I must get Jack involved in a thank you gift crafting session I think.
After leaving the car on charge overnight Jack spent Tuesday morning keeping me on my toes stopping him from crashing into things as he drove up and down our quiet cul de sac. Jack has quite a fan club on our road so many of our neighbours stopped what they were doing to watch him attempt to run me over and laugh gleefully as I jumped out the way.
This road rage did hamper my efforts to take the perfect picture of him in his car and all I managed was a short ‘don’t crash’ video.
The desk is a life saver, no more tripping over crayons my colouring mad boy has left on the floor. It also came in pretty handy for a teddy bears picnic during a rainy Saturday afternoon.
By Wednesday we were putting the heat, and J’s nakedness, to good use to try and kick nappies out our lives for good.
It didn’t happen, we managed one wee in the potty and lots on the floor, den, sofa and lots of changes of pants. The less said about the poo and toy tractor incident the better, I’m still trying to forget that myself while storing it away for Jack’s 18th birthday.
To be fair I did buy him a nice shiny new toy tractor with a scoop on the front, but doing said deed on my carpet and using the tractor to scoop it up wasn’t quite what I had in mind.
I spent a while searching youtube for potty training songs and cartoons in the hope they might help Jack to realise he can’t just go anymore. I think the main problem is he gets too caught up in playing but the dry like me pads we were sent to review are helping to save my furniture and floors. Fingers crossed those youtube videos help with the toilet training over the next few days, for mine and my washing machines sake.
As the week came to an end so did the heat wave and the wet weather meant we couldn’t really go out to play. If it was warm but raining I had no problem with Jack running round the garden but it didn’t stay warm for long. Stuck inside Jack’s naughty side came out to play and he taught us that WD40 is excellent at removing crayon from painted walls and jam sandwiches don’t fit in the dvd player very well.
In a bid to channel his energy into something productive I gave him the peg bag and helped him count out ten pegs. In an instant he had it sussed and now counts everything, including his dinner (taking ages to finish in the process).
Jack had an adorable request while getting ready on Friday morning.
“Mummy Brewer dress too.”
Luckily I had packed all his clothes away ready for a future baby number 2. After a little rummaging I had found all Jack’s newborn outfits which were a little spacious for Brewer the bear but at least he could wear them. Every morning and night now we have to change Brewer too and Jack has to help him learn how to brush his teeth.
I must admit I got a few funny looks from people when Jack, Daddy and I popped down to the shop during a sunny spell on Saturday.
Yes I may be making more work for myself but what’s wrong with a 2 year old little boy enjoying a little pretend play with his bear. A massive plus of it all is that Jack now gladly gets dressed and brushes his teeth because Brewer is doing the same, thats a win for me.
On a plus side the cooler weather did give J a chance to wear him new bunny outfit and pull a grin that set my face leaking once again.
Our Sunday has been spent mostly in our pj’s watching Disney movies while the rain drummed on the windows.
Heres to more of life’s little adventures.
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