Nell

September 4, 2014 · 5 comments

I have to share her, she’s too gorgeous not to! Meet my puppy ‘sister’ Nell that my parents picked up from the RSPCA last weekend.

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They were going to get an older rescue dog and at the moment with the sleepless nights, I’m thinking maybe they wish they had! But their vet advised that as they had rescued two older cats last year, the cats who hadn’t lived with dogs before would be less stressed with a smaller puppy and not a full grown dog. Nell and her sisters came up just as they were starting to look as they are both retiring in October.

Sadly Nell and her sisters were  a neglect case, which is why they were removed from their Mum so early. Both her sisters have also gone to good loving homes nearby, so they’ll be able to see each other which is really nice.  Her Mum was a Collie and Dad is rumoured to be either a Labrador or a German Shepherd,  either way she’s going to be a lovely big dog if her size at the moment is anything to go by.

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But she is adorable! Despite her tough start, she’s a little loving bundle of fun and she’s so smart. She’s only 6 weeks old but can ‘sit’, call her and she comes to you and she’s almost toilet trained.  I’ve been puppy sitting this week with her whilst my parents finished up work as they are both running down for the end of October – such a hardship to spend all day with that cute bundle of mischief!

I’m going get to spend a few days with her over the coming weeks which is fantastic. I think it’s a bit like being a grandparent, I get to play with her, have lots of cuddles and then give her back at the end of the day. I must admit it’s lovely to come home to my all lovely trained up, non teething, well behaved Betty.  But just look at that sleeping fur baby….adorable!

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Homebase asked me if I’d like to try their new soft furnishing range. Originally it was supposed to be a rug, but it turned out that my local store didn’t sell them. So I changed to cushions – which is a good thing! I made a massive decorating error a couple of years ago when we got the new sofa’s.  They are dark grey, it was December and I went mad with festive red. We have a red rug (which I now hate!) and lots of red cushions. It looks amazing in November/December, pretty much looks ridiculous the rest of the year, it’s like the ‘Home Alone’ lounge! I have regretted it ever since, so I was quite pleased to be asked to review cushions. IMG_3071 My ‘local’ Homebase is 15 miles away from my house so it’s not somewhere I pop to on a regular basis. So I was quite surprised when I visited to see it had been made over and is now a very lovely Homebase ‘Design’ Centre. The difference is amazing, it’s gone from looking like somewhere my Dad would love to shop, to somewhere I can browse, rather than rush in buy paint and leave. it’s now full of decorating ideas and helpful staff who can advise on pretty much anything. As a result of the changes, there is now a small home furnishing section which has some cute shabby chic inspired cushions (the knitted ones are fab!) and picture frames, vases and candles (LOVE the owl candles there!) and there is also now a mini Habitat which is now part of the Homebase/Argos group. IMG_3073 They had the loveliest grey cushions, so I snapped up the super cute owl cushion which has enough red in it to go with my other cushions but grey enough to tone down the other red cushions, and a lush silver grey velvet cushion. They’re lovely and the sofa now looks a lot less ‘red’ and festive. IMG_3078 I’m really pleased with them, the lounge still looks snuggly but less…well red!  Thanks Homebase! **Full Disclosure: I received £60 of Homebase vouchers in order to review these cushions**

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London Baby!

August 27, 2014 · 4 comments

Yeah I’m watching far too much ‘Friends’ this summer holidays!.

But we did go to London this weekend for a little night away. Turns out if you go on a Sunday it is way cheaper to stay in a hotel.

We planned a little trip, staying in a Premier Inn near Tower Bridge. Miss L had been to the Victoria and Albert Museum for a school trip, and we’d never been there so we thought we’d make that the starting point.

My Great Great Grandfather was a Scottish stone mason who came to London to work on the V&A and the Brompton Oratory next door so I was fascinated to see what the stone work of the period looked like, he might have created some of what we saw? It was thanks to these buildings that the whole family moved and pretty much I even exist.  I loved the entrance way to the V&A it’s very glamorous, full of marble and some amazing architectural exhibits from all over the ancient world.

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We eventually headed over to the wedding dress exhibit, which Miss L had spotted on her school trip and she wanted to look round. She’s super interested in dress making and textiles at the moment. There were some amazing dresses there from all periods. I really loved the french wedding dresses, those people were tiny and I have no idea how they moved in those dresses??

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This dress wasn’t in the wedding section but over in the Indian exhibit, it was an Austin classic for me. You can just see someone from Pride and Predjudice wearing it!

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On the way to the hotel we popped by the Tower of London to see the 100th Anniversary of WW1 Poppies Display. They’re all hand made ceramic and each one represents a British and Commonwealth life lost…there’s just so so many. It’s a very moving display, I got quite teary. Miss L was shocked to see how many there were and the display isn’t even half way finished yet. It’s due to be completed on the 11th November.

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It was a lovely day and nice to see a different side of London from where we normally go. I’m planning our next trip already.

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I’m back!

August 11, 2014 · 10 comments

Hello Everyone!

Sorry it’s been so long, I’m finally feeling well enough after my surgery to sit in front of the computer for an extended period of time.

I’d never been into hospital for an operation before and I was pretty scared. Paul and Miss L came with me and we bundled into my little cubical for the day. Poor L was a little diamond, she didn’t complain once and was so helpful despite it being a long and dull day for her.  I finally was called for surgery at 2.30pm (we got there at 7am)  and I was terrified walking into Theatre. By the time I lay down to have the anaesthetic I was sobbing, I was so scared I wouldn’t wake up. The theatre team were great, wiped my tears, made me laugh and held my hand while I fell asleep. I thank them from the bottom of my heart for being so kind and understanding.  Same goes for the recovery team and my nurses, they were brilliant, no question was too stupid and nothing too much trouble, utterly lovely. Even my consultant who I’m pretty sure hates talking to patients was ace, but he did the hard bit so I’ll let him off.IMG_2772.JPG

The surgery went well, it was pretty painful the first couple of days, I swear it was worse than my c-section. But a week from the operation I was driving again and then I got a small infection, which some antibiotics too care of pretty quickly. I’m still getting the odd twinge and swelling now but it’s not too bad at all. I’ve still not had the results of what they pulled out of me yet, but the surgeon was happy on the day it was just a dermoid cyst and nothing more sinister. I think if it was anything worse, I would have been recalled back to hospital by now for further treatment. So fingers crossed.

The only thing it’s really left me with are two small scar’s either side of my stomach (Miss L says it looks like I’ve been attacked with a nail gun. Thanks kid!) and a new belly button which is VERY weird at the grand old age of 42 – don’t like it!

So now I’m fighting fit and finally have some energy again I’ve been planning lots of DIY jobs around the house and we’re planning on finally replacing that tiny kitchen of mine!  I might even makeover the blog again, it’s been a while and I keep promising myself I’ll try a magazine layout.

Thanks for hanging in there with me and all the kind messages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, they helped me a lot when I was in hospital and recovering big squishy hugs to you all! xxxx

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I’m manically trying to get loads of jobs finished or even done before my surgery in July, and the one job we’ve managed to finish is Miss L’s room – hurray!!

She’s been in her room since she was about 16 months old, before that she was in the tiny nursery/box room in this house and a similar room in our old house. But I thought it might be nice to share how her room has evolved from toddler to nearly the same size as me ‘tween’.

This was her room just after she’d moved out of her cot, it was the same colour and had the same carpet as when we moved in, so I guess this is late 2004? I didn’t initially think it was worth spending a massive amount of money on the room and as you can see the changing table is still there as well her baby rocker – which is still there now. She reads in it, watches TV and plays computer games in it in hindsight one of the best things I ever bought!.

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2004

In 2006, when more messy years were over and she could express a bit more what she’d like the room had it’s first big makeover….she asked for pink *sobs* but thankfully even when she was three she had taste and she chose a Farrow and Ball pink (there’s my girl!).  I kept most of the same furniture gave the room a lick of paint, I also left the carpet as there wasn’t much point in changing it – playdoh anyone?

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 2006

By 2010 well there was kid’s stuff and yes more kids stuff. So time to change again.I wrote a post about it here  by this point an old double bed had snuck in there. She wasn’t a sleeper and I was sick of sleeping on the floor, so I popped our old bed in there. But by 2010 she was sleeping and as it was taking up much of the room, it was time to buy a single and get some decent storage in. So we got her a new carpet, wardrobe, Billy bookcase and Expedit from Ikea in and it really made a massive difference to how the room works.

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From this 2004 baby amounts of stuff                                       to 2010 7 Year old amounts of stuff

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2010 Big Kid Room!

Since then her room has remained pretty much the same we added a cherry blossom sticker above her bed and added a desk but pretty much it’s stayed the same. Then we had the re-wire done last year and it trashed the wall in there. We’d been meaning to re-decorate her room since and just not gotten round to it. But over the last month we finally got to work.  As always I asked what she’d like and this time round she made me a Pinterest mood board.  She asked for a white room, and she found a pair of duck egg blue/green curtains in Ikea so I took those as the basis for the room.  This is her mood board – it was so easy for her to do and helped me loads.

Follow Liz’s board Tween Bedroom Makeover Moodboard on Pinterest.

Here’s her room before we painted…..

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And here’s what it looks like now, all grown up and fit for an 11 year old!.

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2014

It’s all the same stuff just repainted the room and she’s got new curtains. There a couple of bits I’m re-painting, mostly the desk which apparently needs to be white and not purple now.  And there was a Fairy/Princess coat hook which has had a makeover with some Annie Sloan paint and now looks like a nice shaker style hook.

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I must admit I’m amazed at the difference just painting it white has made. In an ideal world where my husband didn’t care about things like 6 year old carpet, I would have ripped that up and painted her floor white too. Then it would have been even brighter in there, but that probably would have taken another week that I don’t really have – maybe the next house!

The baby furniture that has stood the test of time, are her small chest of drawers which are still adorable but slightly less practical now she’s in women’s sized 8-10 clothes. and her baby rocker.  The toy chest is now languishing down in the toddle sized playhouse that no one can get in anymore as we’re all too big to get in there. Other than that I think the Ikea stuff might just carry us through to late teens…although I’m not too sure about that wardrobe. Should have gone for one with a full drop, but the drawers are super useful at the moment so win some/lose some maybe next house that can be in the ‘non negotiable’ guest room along with the baby drawers?

We’re hoping to move in the next 18 months or so, I have no idea how we’re getting that massive Expedit out of here!

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Peonies from the Cutting Garden

It’s peony season! If you have a spare spot in your garden or on your patio, plant a peony you’ll never regret it. They are dead easy to grow, pop them in full sun or partial shade and then just leave them alone and they get bigger every year. If they are in pots make […]

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Where I’ve been

I know I’ve been AWOL from here since March, and I feel bad about letting my online home gather dust!  I don’t normally post massively personal stuff on here as my family moan at me, but a blogging gap of nearly two months needed an explanation. I’d been having stomach pains since September last year, […]

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Ideal Home 2014

I had an email from the Norwegian company Ekornes who make ‘Stressless’ chairs asking if I’d like to go to the Ideal Home Show and then swing by and see them. I had such a great time last year that I jumped at the chance!  This year I took Paul and Miss L with me…brave as […]

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Valspar Paint at B&Q

When I was down in London at the Spring B&Q show in the bottom of my goodie bag was a voucher for their new Valspar paint range, which I think has launched recently. They have ready mixed paint in every colour you can imagine or you can take something with you for them to scan and match […]

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How to Fix Laminate..badly!

Disaster at ours this morning. I was all pumped up and doing a spring clean….well the sun was shining and I could see how dirty the house was.  Thought I’d start in the lounge, then I could clean and watch ‘Homes under the Hammer’, my utter guilty pleasure. Lifted the footstool away from the sofa, […]

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