Friday, 30 January 2015


I am pleased to announce, that I will be a Geronimo ambassador.

What is Geronimo, you ask??  Well....
Geronimo is a long weekend of family fun. It will be debuting on the May bank holiday which is Saturday 23rd -Monday 25th May. It will be taking place in Tatton Park, in Cheshire, (WA16 6NQ)  and is set to deliver an exciting programme of acts, amazing experiences and wonderful adventures, resulting in a fantastic family day out.
Festival Director Simon Goldman said: “As a father of seven, I know how hard it is to find quality days out that cater for the whole family.  With Geronimo, we’ve created a festival that’s going to keep the kids entertained all day long, and create memories that will last a lot longer."
The family friendly festival will be in zones...
The adrenaline Zone (High Octane, thrills and spills) will challenge even the bravest of adventures. This area will include the high ropes course, tree climbing, den building and the zip wire, which can reach up to a whopping 60kph.

The geronostage zone (Main stage entertainment)  Bignames will be appearing on the Geronostage, like Cbeebies favourite, Mr Bloom. He will be performing live twice a day.
Cbeebies "I can cook" presenter Katy Ashworth, will be making three live performances a day and meet and greet sessions too. More live acts will be announced soon
The 3ft and under zone (Big fun for the little ones). They will have their pop up petting farm, sandpits, camel rides, (Im really interested in seeing the girls on one of these!) bubble shows, and an inflatable village.
The groovy zone (Lets get bopping) -this is the area for the children (and parents) who love to dance. Activities in this area include Zumba workshops, dress-up area, dance classes with baby ballet, and they also have their own disco playing all the party favourites. (I know that both girls would LOVE this area ALOT!!)
The funky junk zone (Creative workshops galore) this zone is for the creative children, from cookie decorating to buggy makeovers, festival goers are invited to take part in the live art projects, and I've been warned... GLITTER OVERLOAD!!
The circus zone (Big top entertainment) This is where you can laugh out loud at the clowns or gasp in awe at the breath taking trapeze artist. There will be regular shows taking place throughout the long weekend. Or you could pick up a skill or two, in a workshop, or just sit back and watch the classic Punch and Judy shows. You may also see mini circus acts around the festival too, so keep your eyes peeled.
Doesn't it sound amazing?? We can not wait to go... I know we will be in every zone, as each part I appeals.... It is aimed at families with children 12 years and under, but older children are welcome too. Adults must be accompanied by a child.
Doors are open 10am to 5pm daily. My concern was with the Great British weather, but the website cleared my worries up:
What happens if it is raining?We want to ensure that you can enjoy the event come rain or shine and many of our activities will be under cover and in marquees.  The buggy parks will also be under cover.
So how much does it cost?? It all depends how organised you are... The early bird tickets are £16pp (under twos are free) and go on sale at 9am, 2nd February. After the early bird tickets sell out its £20pp,  Family passes start at £75.

For more information check out their website, twitter, or facebook.

Will I be seeing you there? What area appeals to you and your children more?

***********UPDATE - 10th February ************
Geronimo has added more acts and activities to its already jam packed line-up.
First up, is Cook and Line from Swashbuckle who will be performing live on stage three times a day (Saturday and Sunday only).  Join them in a rip-roaring pirate adventure, full of fun songs and silly slapstick comedy.  It’s guaranteed to be an energetic and interactive show to entertain children of all ages. There will also be meet and greets after each live performance.
Popular CBeebies presenter Alex Winters has also confirmed he will be at the festival.  Geronimites can join Alex in the magical woodlands for interactive storytelling.  He will also make live stage appearances and meeting festival goers daily.

Animal fans will be delighted to hear Ranger Rob will also be at Geronimo.  Explore the amazing world of mini beasts, get up close to lizards and snakes, scorpions and tarantulas.  And for those who prefer their animals a little fluffier, there will be rabbits, guinea pigs and pigmy hedgehogs too.
Other new additions to the bill, include Tree Climbing with Monkey Do, Bear Trails, The Sheep Show, Balance Bike Course, Pif Paf Roaming Circus Acts and an Old Fashioned Helter Skelter.



Bluestone Wales Review - our accommodation

If you follow my blog, and instagram you will know we went to Bluestone Wales last week for a mid week break. I took note of what we did each day here, and you can see what we chose to do.
As it was term time when we were invited Daddy stayed at home with J, whilst I took S and my parents with us. I was very impressed with the welcome, especially as we didn't have to get out the car. There was a little wait, as we did arrive just as the check in opened.
We were given a map on how to get to our lodge, and it came in handy. It was very busy weaving around the parked cars already, and I can understand why it is a car less site apart form check in and departure days. We had until midnight to park the car in the long stay car park, which was plenty of time.
We then arrived at our lodge. We were booked into the Caldey lodge, and my parents had the other Caldey lodge attached to us, which meant that we could pop in without using the front door, as it had its own internal door. Very handy for our situation. It is a ground floor bungalow. Which made it perfect for my dad who is registered disabled.
 On walking in, I was very impressed at how modern it looks. It is the M's family cup of tea... perfect. The living space is open plan, with a dining room area, lounge and kitchen in an L shape.

This is the internal door, linking the properties, IF booked together and requested
My parents lodge, was exactly the same, so their internal link door opened up into the dining room too. We each had our own kitchen, and lounge. Perfect for mixed ages, or different families coming together. At the other side of the lounge was the bedrooms. A double, and a twin.
The double had a bedside table and lamp each side, and a wardrobe, (with coat hangers, and a safe) and a dressing table and stool. We were also provided with towels per person.
The twin was very similar, but had two singles. No safe in the wardrobe, and had a chest of draws instead of a dresser. Plenty of storage. The pictures here, are actually two different rooms as had pushed S's beds together so she had a big one too, so snapped the twin set up from my parents lodge.
The bathroom was clean, and came with a heated towel rack, which came in handy drying swimming costumes! The only thing I would state about the bathroom though, is that it was hard to regulate the temperature of the shower, one minute it was perfect temp, the next scalding etc. Be careful with children... S had a bath and it was fine.
We also had our own picnic bench outside too.. perfect for warmer weather.

The kitchen was very well equipped.
The breadbin, butter dish and toast rack was a very nice touch, along with a cafetiere and milk jugs etc. It came with a toaster and electric kettle, microwave, and dishwasher. The cutlery draw was well stocked, and included a bottle opener... unfortunately im taking part in #DryJanuary, so it remained unused. Potato peeler, scissors, mashers, whisks, we also (I forgot to photo) had a knife block. Plenty of cups, glasses, saucepans, Pyrex dishes cheese graters, sieves, and large bowls. One of the best stocked holiday kitchens I have seen. (We do a lot of self catering breaks with the in-laws)
We were also given a welcome pack, which included a scouring pad, dish cloth, spare bin bags, dishwasher tablets, and washing up liquid. It was enough for our 3 day break, but if you were staying longer, maybe worth bringing more.
There was so much to do onsite, I don't think we even touched the sides. We walked everywhere, or caught the road train, which is very handy. My dad was aloud his car onsite, as he has a blue disabled badge, so if your disabled, and registered you are catered for here, with car access.
So would we stay again? Yes. We loved it, and I think J would get even more benefit from it, with the other activities suitable for her age. I will review the site in another post as this one is getting long!!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

New Year, New me, week 3

Week 3, now this week was very challenging.... old habits crept in on the run up to the holiday. A few failed fasts again thanks to cake at a children's birthday party that I couldn't say no to. We also treated ourselves to a take away, and as my stomach has shrunk, I couldn't eat my main after my starter, and instead had it the next day, trying to fit 2 fasts into 4 days is tough. Life gets in the way. I also enjoyed myself on the few days I was away, and didn't watch what I was eating. Yes, fish and chips was on the menu, along with crisps, cakes and biscuits... we were on holiday after all. I also reduced my water intake as we were out and about, and long car journeys, a toilet stop wasn't always convenient.
So after stepping on the scales on my weigh day (Thursday) the morning after getting back, retaining water, and lack of sleep, I was pleased to see just a 1Ib gain.
Im not going to beat myself up. It still keeps me in my 1Ib a week goal... JUST... I need to be back on the ball now, and keep to my planned fast days.
As I am writing this im half way through week 4, and I am confident... week 4 will talk about the Jillian Michaels (From 30 day shred, and Britain's biggest Looser) seminar I went to on Thursday night, as well as the chance to try out a SlimPod. These sound very interesting, and will be introduced half way through week 4... so lots going on...
How is your new year weight loss resolutions going?? Are you going strong? Having a little blip? Given up? I would love to know.

Mr and Mrs T plus three#BloggingToJogging
Sim's Life

My Sunday Photo

This week again... im a rule breaker... just two this time...
My first time with a slow shutter speed for the night time shot... Moon in crescent and Venus. Took a lot of shots to realise I needed to rest the camera on something to keep it looking sharp!... yes im blonde!

And my favourite beach shot of S whilst in Saunderfoot, South/West Wales.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Our Bluestone Diary... day 3

Wednesday was our day 3, and our final day at Bluestone Wales. We were due to have a busy day, to fit in everything Bluestone had to offer. S had other ideas, the previous night, she was still buzzing around at 9pm, and then at 3 am she decided it was time to wake up. She did not want to leave the lodge. After some coaxing. we (plus Nana) were off to the blue lagoon for some swimming and splashing around. S was very excited.

The lagoon was very warm, S was nervous though, and the tiredness was kicking in. A few tantrums were had when the waves were switched on, and when it was time to leave.
After the swim on the way back to the lodge, we got the road train to the adventure centre.
S's face was a picture as we walked in... there was so much going on. Slot machines, crazy golf, soft play area, high ropes, climbing walls, bouncy castles. Lego walls... so much. Due to S's tiredness, we let her choose one thing before going back for dinner.

S chose crazy golf, this was free, and it was also empty, S attempted to hit the ball once, and then was more interested in looking around the course, and jumping over the rocks... until she fell over... it was then time to leave...

We headed to Saunderfoot with Grandad and Nana for some lunch, and it just had to be fish and chips. Then it was time to explore the beach, whilst they sampled the shops. I showed her that the end of the fishing net could be used like a pen... and she was off....

...then of course it was sand castle time....

As it was so cold, she gave up after making three, and wanted to fish in the pool of water. We didn't find anything but she had fun swishing it around.

 After fishing, it was time to collect shells.....

After the beach it was then time to head back to the site.... we just had to go in the tree house, and Nana even conquered her vertigo fears and passed over the creaky wobbly bridge..

S was having great fun exploring the other bridges... and of course I just had to have a go too...

We then headed to the lake, as we realised we hadn't seen it yet... and was hoping to watch the sun set, it was so calm and tranquil....

...but we had to head back to the lodge as the toilet was calling, but not before stopping at the wildlife habitat house...

After getting back to the lodge, the sun was starting to set, and I was able to catch the last glimpse of the sun on our last day... before starting to pack.

After packing, we were then able to see the sun and Venus overlooking the site too. A nice send off for a fab three days. Nana and Grandad stayed on until Day 5, and was woken to heavy frost. The photos looked great.
So as you can imagine, after a very filled fun packed day, S slept the whole way home.... 4 and a half hours.... meant I had a very peaceful drive back.
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Thinking back...

As you know, my two girlies, are very much growing up quickly... S turns 3, in less then 2 weeks. Where has the time gone? Originally, in the "plans" Daddy M and I had decided when I reached around the big 3-0 mark, we would start trying for our family. Which would make it in the next 18 months. If that was the case, we would have been a lot more financially secured to get the very best for our children. Obviously, our family started a little earlier then planned, and J is now 5. Money was extremely tight with the wedding planning in full swing, and deposits paid, when we found out we were expecting. We bought a lot of items second hand, and was given a lot of hand me downs too. She had everything she needed, and it was lovely. However walking around the mother and baby shops, do really get you dreaming for the VERY best, and stylish items on the wish list.
Now I don't have any more babies to buy for, as my physio and doctors have recommended I don't get pregnant again, if I want to keep my mobility. Thank you SPD. (Hip Girdle Pain). But I can still dream for the perfect nursery, cant I?
I have always loved Silver cross. They have styles to suit everyone. From the traditional coach built prams, which sound so perfect for newborns, and you can just imagine the royalty pushing the babies around in the parks, but also do the contemporary styles too, which suit me perfectly, as I am no royalty. They suit everyone. So in my hunt for my ideal nursery products. I just had to browse through their selections.
For the nursery room, I would pick the silver cross Dorchester collection. This is the exact same models I fell in love with when looking for J. I just adore the dark wood, and it would go perfect with pale walls. Its not for everyone, but I do love this. If we was starting our family now, the nursery would have these.
Silver Cross Dorchester Collection
Our girls nursery was mismatched, it served its purpose, but wasn't as luxurious as the Silver cross Dorchester, I would have loved.
J's nursery when living in Wigan
Silver cross also do lots of gorgeous pushchairs and prams too, you can see some here. I love the colours on the Linear Freeway pram and pushchair. And just love that its parent facing as well as outward facing if you wish. It just looks so cosy, and I could imagine pushing a little J or S round in this.
The girls actually had navy pushchairs, not by choice, but just through coincidence. I hated J's pushchair with a passion, so with S's I was much more selective. I chose the one handlebar across rather then separate handles, just like this silver cross, as it made steering easier, lighter, and meant I could do it one handed, so had a hand free for J walking along side. A cosy foot muff was essential too.
J's pushchair... I hated it!
S's pushchair, much more practical
I did actually love S's pushchair, as it went through thick knee high mud when it needed, but it certainly wasn't a gorgeous colour, neither would it lie 100% flat for a new born, or have the foot muff on parent facing. 
If you were to have another baby, would you choose your nursery furniture different? Or your pushchairs? What would you choose?