Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Today I found a note...

...and I simply must write it up for fear of losing it - something Esme said when she was six. She had not long been at Juniors, perhaps she was just seven? School had clearly had an assembly covering the charity Childline about feeling safe/being bullied. And yes, the number she quoted was correct; I remember looking it up afterwards to check!
Esme fights with Fia.
Esme stomps upstairs.
Finds Mummy working.
Tells Mummy that Fia is bullying her and has been bullying her every day this week.
Mummy says, let's make it better and have a story and a snuggle? 
Esme responds, Mummy, that’s not going to make it better. I'm going to phone Childline.  
Mummy baulks. What? 
Esme clarifies, If you've told someone you trust and they don’t help, and it doesn’t get any better, you should phone Childline. And, Mummy, I know the number. It is 0800 1111. 

Sunday, 9 July 2017

28/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Esme's painting has become much cleaner this year, she loves the result of her latest pottery!

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Something to smile about - A review

Something to smile about... that's what the latest Colgate electric toothbrushes are. At least my elated 8 and 5 year old daughters think so. Honesty, the still very much mischievous 5 YO Fia has been going on and on about having an electric toothbrush for ages, and her face when she laid eyes on the bright Despicable Me themed battery brush was an absolute picture.
And then she heard it speak...

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Despicable Me 3 - A parental rite of passage

Sunday LIFE AS IT IS was invited to the preview of the new Despicable Me 3 movie at Leicester Square Odeon. It was of course completely brilliant and a great family day out. Parents, I'm pretty sure you'll be going... expect to laugh loads! #TakeYourMinions #InForATreat Here's me and the gang...



And here's Gru and Drew... not giving anything else away!



Friday, 23 June 2017

A World Like Nowhere Else - A poem



A World Like Nowhere Else

Spinning on its own Axis, where seas of silk lap graceful shores,
A world like nowhere else exists
Where quintessential currents run and elegance and power converge,
And tales of timeless greats are spun and showstoppers emerge
A world for all to celebrate; light years away from ordinary
A world which deftly radiates its realm; and bows to the extraordinary
Where earthly rigours found outside and lived outside are left outside
And wishes wished are realised through all the finer tastes this land will grant
To let its spell enchant; to walk its walk once through those golden gilded gates
To gaze at beauty styled and beauty stitched on graceful form adorned
To know that bay imperious Horse immortalised and cast in bronze is Yeats
That headlines here accomplished render sporting moments starred
This Kingdom... smiling Green Coats kindly guard; this universe beyond three centuries old
Such elements, such pieces of a jigsaw wrought to mould this multi-coloured globe
A blazing beacon to the most majestic sport of all where heroes rise and heroes fall,
And Royal Ascot's world stands tallest of the tall

Henry F Birtles

Sunday, 18 June 2017

25/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Esme makes a windsock out of what she finds in the garden!

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Candy Crush Lip Balms - A review



Candy Crush Lip Balms
Flavours: Lemonade Lake, Chocolate Mountains, Bubblegum Bridge, Peppermint Palace
Available from: Primark
Age: Recommended for 6+
Price: £1.50 each


Sometimes the postman truly delivers. My children were absolutely delighted when they got home from holiday to find not one, not two, but four Candy Crush lip balms on our doorstop for them to try. Shame they never arrived in time to take away to Greece with us - they would have loved the 'grown-up-ness' of the soft and fruity long lasting glaze!

Sunday, 11 June 2017

24/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...

On holiday in Greece, the girls painted a picture for the kind lady Vasso, as a thank you for sharing her lovely home with us. The villa we stayed in was surrounded by bright flowers, so inspiration was everywhere!


Sunday, 28 May 2017

22/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Priceless labelling - praise be for the CAT with the FOOT

Sunday, 21 May 2017

21/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Using the word Reign, Esme writes an acrostic poem for spelling homework, I love the accompanying sketch of Buckingham Palace

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Sunday, 30 April 2017

18/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



















I love these bright pictures by the girls, each depicting Spring. Fia's recalling Easter and Esme's collage welcoming wildlife into the garden.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

17/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year
Creating crafts




















Easter Monday, before the children headed back to school this week, they kept busy with this Laurence King spaceship set

Sunday, 16 April 2017

16/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year

Esme Grace and Sofia Faith made bunny bunting this week at home...



Esme painted this egg...




















And here is Fia's card.




















Happy Easter!

Sunday, 9 April 2017

15/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



We went to the Grayshott pottery this week, the girl's really enjoyed it as always, but it struck me how much Fia has grown up in recent weeks. For the first time at this particular activity, she really focussed, concentrating on her layers of colour and design... the result speaks for itself.


Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Eric the Oracle series by Kate H.N. - A review


DETAILS:
Eric the Oracle series by Kate H.N.
Illustrated by: Tim Bulmer
Written for Key Stage 1&2 children, 7-11 years



Published by: Blockley Bank Books
Ebooks available from: March 2017
Price: ebooks £2.99, printed copies £5.99 or a set of 6 £29.95


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Medusa Musings of an 8YO

I started the day, with my 8-YO Esme Grace, quoting me the following sentence...
'Look me in the eyes’, chanted Medusa menacingly, her hair hissing ferociously, jiggling about like lots of jelly fish, tentacles all swirling around creating a multicoloured blur.
...Sometimes they just amaze you, don't they!

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club - A review


Seeking downtime in the beautiful Sussex countryside? Ashdown Park makes for a wonderful break from routine

Like many working parents, I struggle to find the time to connect with my family, and all too often weekends are spent catching up with the mundane at home. To break that, recently, my husband and I took our two girls away to Ashdown Park Hotel and Country Club to spend some time together. What we found was a most relaxed setting and a return to innocent childhood days…

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Friday, 10 March 2017

My London Colour, Draw, Explore - A review

 
DETAILS:
My London: Colour, Draw, Explore by Majel van der Meulen 
Paperback
Published by: Laurence King
Available from: March 2017
Price: £7.99
ISBN: 978 1 78067 9112


My London: Colour, Draw, Explore - well the clue's in the word explore really. Out this Spring, the London themed activity book is the perfect accompaniment for a trip to the capital. It has a whopping 40 pages for children to make London their own as they weave along the river Thames from Big Ben to Tower Bridge, spotting all the famous landmarks, buildings and people as they go. Encouraging imagination, it asks children to, for example, draw the people on the London Eye, design a bridge, create an art exhibition at the Tate, even build a skyscraper; surely this book is any budding architects/artists idea of heaven?

LIFE AS IT IS VERDICT
My London: Colour, Draw, Explore is a fun and unique London themed activity book for children incorporating travel and doodling. It is a journal of sorts, with colourful trendy pages full of London landmarks, and space for children to add their own stamp on them, as they make (and keep) memories. A great souvenir.

Emma Oliver and the GraceFaith girls received a copy of My London in exchange for this review, all ideas and comments are my own.


Sunday, 5 March 2017

10/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Stack the bike on the car and set off to a hotel in the countryside... I like your thinking Fia!

Friday, 3 March 2017

A Story of Cancer, Struggle and Hope

A while back, Life As It Is was contacted by a young woman Heather Von St James, a cancer survivor who asked if she could share her story with my blog. I was more than happy to be used as a platform for this cause. 18 months down the line, I have since been contacted by Virgil Anderson, also wanting to raise awareness of Mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos fibres, resulting in 43,000 deaths around the world per annumWe know today how dangerous exposure to asbestos is. It is banned in 60 countries. Tragically, it is not yet banned worldwide.

Whether it is the sufferer or their family and friends, Life As It Is for so many people, is one affected by cancer. Here's Virgil's story...

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

A delicate flower - Esme at 8.5

Esme, at 8.5YO you're a delicate flower.

You worry about whether you should stay home with me or go to the pool with Dad and Fia.

I tell you, the pool will be so much more fun; but you think you will be bored.

"What if I don't see any of my friends there?"

"So what if you don't... Daddy and Fia will be your playmates."

"But I have homework to do and it's a nice day, I'd get to have time on my own with you..."

In the end, you decide to swim. You make the right call my lovely girl as I'm about to hoover.


Oh my Esme. At this stage of development, I'm seeing you often worry about the little things. Emotion is creeping in... not quite door slamming, but very much flouncing off one minute, returning for a cuddle the next, bursting into tears and not knowing why. It'll pass chickydoo. Wait and see. I love you.



Sunday, 26 February 2017

9/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Oh little one shining bright, you remind me of the shooting star you drew this week.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Match a Track - a game review

This game is a great rainy day activity and over half term, fast became one of our favourite pastimes. It's not as easy as you may think either!

DETAILS:
Match a Track
Illustrated by: Marcel George
Suitable for ages: 4-7
Published by: Laurence King
Available from: March 2017
Price: £12.99
ISBN: 978 1 78067 964 8

Sunday, 19 February 2017

8/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



An inset day prior to this half term found us at a pottery painting place. Sofia Faith has really come on in her focus for this. I'd love to say she was responsible for the perfect eyes and mouth but I'd be lying. The lady that owns the shop did that for her, but the rest... great job Fia!

Friday, 17 February 2017

Garden Design - When Mud turns to Magic - Watch Our Space

I am so excited at the prospect of our new outdoor space. Three weeks in and the landscaping is in full force as the transformation on the garden and drive gets well and truly underway.

Doing the work for us are Ben and Paul of Haslemere Landscapes, who I have to say have so far been great. You'd never think two men could accomplish so much in such a short amount of time... and in such trying conditions.


Sunday, 12 February 2017

7/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year...



Esme Grace begins to sew a love heart. But who will she give it to on Tuesday?!