So honoured

I really have some lovely blogger/twitter friends, all of them are creative and generous spirited, fabulous women.  The latest example of this is Maya at Springtree Road (@springtree on twitter).

I had a tweet from her yesterday

I just named a yarn after @violetposy but she can’t see it until monday’

I was intrigued to see what she had made, as she makes the most beautiful handmade and dyed yarns and today I was rewarded for my patience

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Isn’t it beautiful?

The colours reminded her of my blog and they really do don’t they?

If you are looking for some beautiful handmade yarn please go and visit Maya’s Etsy store and support such wonderful handmade items.

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Thank you Maya I’m really honoured that you thought of Violet Posy for your inspiration xx

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Garden Must Have! {Wasp Catcher}

I’m sorry I hate wasps

They serve no purpose other than to eat my apples and try and sting me.  Last year one stung me and my arm went numb which was pretty frightening, so I really dislike them now!

We’ve had a massive problem with them this year, at one point we couldn’t walk up the steps in the garden as there were so many.   Apparently there has been a  wasp population boom due to the odd summer we’ve had.  So I bought this when I was in Holt last week

It’s a £5 wasp catcher, you fill it with the beer and they are attracted to it, fly in and drown.  I wasn’t that convinced in the store but as I was desperate I bought it and you know what…. it works!  Since it’s been up we don’t have that much of a problem, just the odd wasp not the hundred we had before.

Violet Posy Recommended!

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Holt

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Our adventures in North Norfolk continue, last week Miss L and I went to Holt with my Mum, as we’d not been there before.  Holt is a really ancient market town near the coast, and is  full of boutiques and yummy eateries.  We had the most gorgeous eggs benedict breakfast at one of the teahouses called No 28, Miss L was eying up the amazing looking fairy cakes.  It was decorated in a very glamorous fashion I especially liked the chandelier upstairs, you can see a picture of it below I couldn’t resist taking a snap.

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From the brown awning shop (sorry I didn’t catch the name of it) I bought a wasp catcher as we’re having massive problems with wasps around our apple tree – which has worked better than I could have imagined! I also picked up a metal oval bucket which I could either fill with plants or ice and beer for summer BBQ’s, it’s currently being used for carrying food and other odds and sods down to the BBQ area of the garden – works a treat!

You have to get there early for parking as the whole place seemed to be full when we left at 11.30am, but well worth an early morning start.  It’s a great place to while away a day.

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Club Penguin stole my laptop

I bet you’ve been wondering where I’ve been?

See this stylish penguin, she’s been hogging my laptop for three days now!

Miss L has discovered the wonders of Club Penguin thanks to her father, who was in charge of entertaining her while I went to work Thursday.  He decided that buying her a years subscription was less painful than a trip to Build a Bear in the school holidays (coward!).

But she’s only allowed on my laptop (not his!) so this is the first time I’ve been reunited with it since!

Normal service will now be resumed 🙂

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Cafe Bebe – a Place for Mums!

cafeb

I was very honoured to be asked by one of my Mummy Blogger Karin pals for some help on her blog last week.  She has started a new site and blog called Cafe Bebe. It’s a place for Mum’s to meet up, read reviews,  enter competitions and talk to other Mumpreneurs.  I think it’s a fabulous site and Karin’s Cafe Bebe blog is just too cute, Karin has the most adorable baby!  The whole thing has turned out fabulously, so if you have time pop by and say ‘Hi’

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2010 Ikea Catalogue is here!

I know this is really pathetic, but one of the highlights of my year is when the new Ikea Catalogue comes out in August.  I used to live in Croydon and I could see the ‘Twin Towers’ of Ikea from my kitchen window. A lot of the furnishing of my first home came from Ikea and I still have a soft spot for the store.  I like the way they deal with small space living, my first home was about 600sq ft and the lounge was also the bedroom so a lot of my inspiration came from visiting the little Ikea rooms in the store.

Now there’s three of us living in 1200sq ft so the problem hasn’t really changed that much. In fact thinking about it I had more space to myself in that tiny first apartment!  So although it’s not to some people’s taste I still think Ikea has a role in many people’s home.  It’s cheap, designed for small homes and if you choose right – really stylish!

So here are my picks of the new 2010 Catalogue

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Family History Day

My degree was in History and English and one of my dissertation projects was my family tree.  This was *cough* 16 years ago now, but I was utterly hooked on finding out where my family had come from and who they were.  Back then I’d have to hunt in dusty libraries and records offices for any information  Now of course you pop something into Google, Ancestry or FamilySearch and you have the information in seconds.  But by the time I’d met Paul I’d pretty much done my tree back to the 15th Century, so imagine my delight when we married and had Miss L – I had a whole new tree to find!

Recently though Miss L’s been watching ‘Who do you think you are’ and has now taken an interest in her own family.  So on Saturday as we are very fortunate to live near the area Paul’s family come from (mine’s Scotland, Somerset and London) we headed to the village his great grandfather lived, in the 1880’s.    I’d driven through it but never stopped off and looked round the churchyard for family graves.  So we thought it might be fun to see if we could find any – we are bit of a weird family!

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This is Woodditton Church which was mentioned as property of King Canute (995AD) and is in the Domesday Book in 1086. As from the records I’d found that Paul’s family had lived in the village for about 200 years I was pretty confident that there should be some gravestones for us to look at.  Gravestones are also an excellent source of information as things tend to be written on the stones that are missing from any other record about the person, so always good to find.

We were a bit disappointed when we got to the graveyard and there seemed to be a lot of missing stones as the graveyard seemed very empty for what has been a thriving village for centuries.  But we started our hunt…..which went on and on for about an hour and there was not one gravestone of Paul’s family.

Just as we were about to give up Paul pulled some moss from an old stone which was lying on the floor, and there she was Miss L’s great, great, great, great, great Grandmother Eliza Jane Wiseman and her daughter also an Eliza Jane.  So we cleared the grave of moss and tidied up around it.

This side is of her daughter as the older Eliza’s side was virtually unreadable, but we very happy to have found them and made their grave more presentable.  We have no idea where the rest of their family is though, it’s possible the stones have been uprooted over the years so I’ll have to contact the church to find out.

But Miss L was amazed to find it and very excited, she now wants to go to some of the other churches in the area and learn more about where she comes from, which is what I wanted to achieve.

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But She’s Pretty…

As you know my husband is very tolerant of my Shabby Chic/Cath Kidston habit  He doesn’t moan about sleeping in a rosy duvet, or the dining room chairs I made over with Kidston fabric.  But I made a new purchase and he’s not feeling it’s patchwork beauty – he described it as ugly!

But I think it looks lovely on the chaise in our bedroom, which is my magazine/coffee snuggling area

What do you think?

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Thankyou for the Meme

I am utterly rubbish, I’ve been tagged so many times and not gotten round to doing any of them!  Thank you to all these lovely people for thinking of me Mum-E , Luphia, Our Beautiful Crazy Life, Coding MamaSusan, Nixd Minx (twice!) so to make amends I’m doing this one.  Nixd Minx sent me with this one from Tara Cain at Sticky Fingers who had the same problem and she came up with this one which made me laugh.

1. Who is the hottest movie star?

Where to start?  Johnny Depp when he’s not in stupid makeup/Tim Burton movies, Gerald Butler, David Duchovny….endless list 😉

2. Apart from your house and your car, what’s the most expensive item you’ve ever bought?

6 months freedom holiday in Canada when I was 25 and having a quarter-life crisis, best thing I ever did!

3. What’s your most treasured memory?

The day my husband proposed, we’d just miscarried and I thought he was asking me to stop me from crying. It was simultaneously the saddest/happiest/most romantic/poignant day of my life

4. What was the best gift you ever received as a child?

A tie between my first computer – a BBC Acorn Electron, starting my lifetime as a geek girl and my red Grifter bike which I loved to death.

5. What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made?

When I was 22, I avoided a friend who was off on holiday, because I’d had an argument ( I can’t even remember what it was about now) with one of her friends at a party.  I didn’t say goodbye to her, it was a spur of the moment thing but I couldn’t be bothered to discuss the stupid argument with her.   She didn’t come back.   She died at 21 on a jetski with her boyfriend in an accident.  It was stupid and ridiculous and I’ve never forgiven myself for not saying goodbye.

6. 4 words to describe yourself.

Mother, Wife, Friend, Geek

7. What was your highlight or lowlight of 2008?

Highlight – my best friends having their first baby

Lowlight – My Goddaughter’s 9 month old son dying, beyond heartbreaking.


8. Favourite film?

Star Wars (the original and best!)

9. Tell me one thing I don’t know about you.

I can’t knit or sew and I really, really wish I could.  But I seem to murder sewing machines LOL!

10. If you were a comic book/strip or cartoon character, who would you be?

Wonder Woman 🙂

So if you are feeling as guilty as me, feel free to join in!!

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Thrifty Back to School

UK Readers, the nice people at Voucher Codes have sent me some voucher codes for ‘Back to School’ shopping to share with you.  There are codes for Tesco, Barrett, M&S, Kickers, Borders, Waterstone and lots more.  Have a look and hopefully it might save you a bit of money, which is kind of essential these days.

Enjoy!

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Summer

At the weekend, mainly to avoid doing lots of gardening we decided to head up to the North Norfolk Coast.  We’re really lucky that it’s only about an hour away, and I can’t believe it took us so long to find the wonderful beaches up there! We only discovered them about 3 years ago, which is utterly shameful but they are such a well kept secret.

We went to Brancaster Beach which is about 20 minutes from Kings Lynn and is the kind of beach you don’t imagine exists in the UK.  The car park was almost full and they’d opened the overflow one too but this is what the beach looked like

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The beach is so big that it looked almost empty!  Miss Miss L had lots of fun making sand castles, a sand sphinx and a sand pyramid with the help of daddy, while I laid in the sun.  I wish I’d thought to pack a picnic to have on the beach but a stop off for tea at the Orange Tree pub at Thornham worked just as well.

We didn’t get time to go to Burnham Market which has some of my favourite shops in East Anglia –  Humble Pie which just sells the yummiest food and Norfolk Living which is shabby chic heaven and is the place to go for vintage gardening items.  But I still have 4 weeks of the summer holidays to go so I suspect I’ll get up there before the end of the holidays.

I must admit that every time we go up to the North Norfolk coast we both mutter about moving there to live near the beach, but the houses are expensive (if beautiful!), little work and schools are few and far between.  But it’s on the list of things to do if we win lottery 😉

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Blogging for Bliss launch

bloggingforbliss

One of the first blogs I ever came across was Tara Frey’s.  She along with Amanda Soule, Sheye Rosemeyer, and Alicia Paulson inspired me to start Violet Posy.  Today is the launch day for Tara’s own book Blogging for Bliss which I’ve just ordered from Amazon, I can’t wait to read it!  From what I hear there are so great tips for bloggers old and new and if you’ve ever seen the wonderful photography on Tara’s site I’m hoping to get some inspiration.

Congratulations Tara!

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Disney World Survival Tips

I’ve been meaning to write this since I got back but here are my top tips for holidaying at Disney World and staying sane!

1. Drink lots and lots of water.  Take it to the park with you as it gets very expensive, or refill from the water fountains dotted around the park.  Florida is very hot especially in the summer months and you and your little ones will need all the fluid you can get.

2. Either go for 9am and leave at lunchtime for some pool time and food, have the afternoon off, a nap and go back for the evening festivites.  Or if you have older children go mid afternoon and stay through to the evening. Either way it saves you and your family getting burn out and over exposed to the sun.

3. Set a daily budget for your children for how much they can spend, preferably saved from their own pocket money before they go.  Disney merchandising is like crack for children under the age of 12 even  for Miss L who had no interest in Disney at all before we went!.  We gave her a $5 (£2.50) a day budget saved from her own money.  She could then buy whatever plastic rubbish she wanted. Once it was gone, it was gone.  She soon learnt that if she wanted something bigger like a cuddly toy then she had to merge days and not buy anything. It saves on arguments and the ‘I wants’ if the rules are set from the beginning.

DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE SHOPS AT DISNEY AND PESTER POWER!

4. If you go to the parks in the morning, grab a map at the entrance and walk straight to the back of the park.  80% of people go for what’s straight in front of them so it takes a good couple of hours for them to reach the far side of the parks. It’ll give you plenty of time to explore and have fun without the crowds.

5. If you forget your camera or want a group shot take advantage of the Disney Photo Pass which gives you access to a professional photographer who’ll take photos of you and your family and then post them to a private account online for you. You can make up photobooks etc when you get home from them.  I think they are a little on the expensive side, but you are paying for professional photos and they are of a good quality.  But it’s for more of a treat or an emergency IMHO.

6. Read online reviews of the park restaurants and then book reservations in advance.  We lost out on going to several restaurants because we hadn’t booked.  The Canadian Restaurant in Epcot was booked solid for 2 weeks straight!

7. Fast Pass system, it was amazingly good years ago but this trip it just seemed broken.  On some rides it worked really well (Soarin’ – 2 hour stand in line wait or Fast Pass come back in 3 hours – a no brainer) But the Peter Pan ride seemed to ‘sell out’ and the time to attend the ride moved to the evening by 10am.  And you can only have one fast pass on the go at once, so don’t depend on it you will have to do some queuing.

8. It rains in Florida and when it rains, it rains a *lot* especially in the summer months.  Expect to get wet and hot!

9. Take lots of breaks, sit down enjoy the view and people watch. It makes you less grouchy and gives you time to just step out of the rush

10.  If you’re taking babies and toddlers, make sure you have something to mist them with or protect them from the sun, I saw so many distressed toddlers and babies there due to the heat. However if you are taking a baby there are great facilities buggy rentals (I’d probably take my own lightweight one though) baby changing in virtually all the bathrooms, and breastfeeding areas although I think it’s allowed in the park anywhere as long as you are discreet.  I saw lots of women breastfeeding and it didn’t seem to be a problem.

11. Take a photo of where you have parked, seriously not as stupid as it sounds.  Sometimes it’s hard to remember if you are in Pluto 49 or Goofy 20!  Everyone else does it so you won’t feel silly.  Oh and parking is $12 a day all day and you can transfer between parks either via the internal transport or by driving between them.  But the parking ticket is good for the whole day at all the parks so remember to keep the ticket incase you go back.

12. If you want a photo or an autograph with a character check the park map the areas where they are and what times are clearly posted.  They used to just wander about, but not anymore, it’s also much better orgainised and handled than at Disneyland Paris.

13.  When the parades are on the queues for the rides drop substantially, so try and get on the big rides then.

Other than that dress light, wear and take lots of sunblock with you and have fun! 🙂

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