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The one where I almost lose my sh*t

I know, it’s been a long time coming. Before anyone feels like being a smart arse.

I like to think I’m some kind of superwoman, give me any task and I’ll nail it. Externally that its, internally I’ll be a big old mess and mentally tearing my hair out. But I won’t tell *you* that, because that would be stupid….

Back in March I decided to take a step towards my dream job, I applied for a place on an access to health and social care course and got it. It started in April, and during my interview the tutor kept repeating how hard it was, how much work there was to do, and how it would take over my life. I chuckled along, thinking OK lady, give it a rest and stop exaggerating.

Only she wasn’t.

It started off slowly then hit all at once like a frigging steam train. I had essays, reports, assignments, exams and presentations coming out of my ears. It’s a full time course. Even though I’m only there for two full days a week but I’m also expected to put in as many hours out of college as I spend in, so that’s 16 hours in, 16 hours out. Add to that a part time job, two kids a husband and two dogs, you can see where the shit was being lost. Something had to give. And it did. I had to make a decision based on my happiness and sanity, before I officially went off the scale. Sometimes you just have to take the whole leap and not just bits of it. (Yes, that’s a hippy statement but whatever!) I couldn’t keep stretching myself in all directions because I wasn’t giving anything my full attention. The kids were getting ready meals and takeaways, the husband was getting a snoring wife every evening, the washing was piling up on top of the piles and don’t even mention the housework. I think my TV has raised an inch or two with the layer of dust under it.

Being a midwife is what I want to do. There is nothing else that I can see myself doing, I kept trying to give myself other options, fall backs if this failed – but nothing sat right with me, because midwifery is what I’m meant to do, one way or another. And because of that I have to throw myself into it 100%. No more half measures. I’ve had two exams, handed in three essays and made one presentation in the last month. Both exams were graded with distinctions, two of the three essays have been marked, both distinctions, and the presentation, a distinction. I still have three more essays to be graded and an exam to sit tomorrow (hence more shit losing) but I’m slowly starting to think I might be ok at this, I might be able to do it. The whole time I’ve felt like I’ve been winging it, waiting to get caught out for being a fraud. I have no faith in myself at all and I really need to work on that. Maybe next week….!

For now, the end is in sight. Two more days of college until September. The kids will be at school for a couple more weeks, I won’t have any revision, any work, I can start to be mum again, stay awake past 10pm, not feel the need for a granny nap every day. I’m looking forward to cooking some proper dinners, cleaning the house (I know, I know) and spending some time with my babes.

And a bloody HUGE gin and tonic.

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Germs – and the chance to win £100 John Lewis Vouchers!

Yup, random title there but had to grab your attention somehow didn’t I!

I was contacted by GlaxoSmithKline recently as they’re organising a competition for students to broaden their scientific view of the world (school age students that is, not ‘mature’ students like me!) and they asked me what ideas I could come up with to stop germs spreading and the biggest challenges I face when it comes to fighting germs.

The second question, could of course, be answered in one word. Kids. Bless ‘em. They’re grubby little buggers though aren’t they? I think they tend to fall into one of two categories, the ones who love washing their hands and having long showers every morning (meaning you need to fight to get them out and dressed in time) or the ones who seem to think they don’t need have a shower every day. Guess which category my son falls into……?

And this is an actual C quote “I don’t need to have a shower, I had one yesterday…..” Yup. That’s my boy. He will happily dig in the garden, roll around in the park and paint with his hands all day long. Without washing them. Grubby little boy! So, I’m pretty interested in ways to reduce germs that actually attract the kids attention. We’ve tried the fancy kid soaps but they only work for a few days until the novelty has worn off. Hand gels work, but again, not forever.

To be honest, a little bit of dirt never really hurt anyone and if he was more worried about keeping his hands clean than getting them dirty then I’d be worried (lots of worrying in that sentence) but when it gets to winter time and they pass colds and bugs between them like a never ending game of tennis, that’s when I start to get a bit more germ-phobic. My usual tactic is spraying the place with dettol, tissues available everywhere and making sure they wash their hands, but what else can you do? Is there a magic germ gadget you can buy? That would be good!

So, in order to win £100 worth of John Lewis vouchers (I know!) all you need to do is tell me how you fight the germs! Pretty simple huh? All the t&c’s are at the bottom of this post, you have to leave a comment but the rest are just added extras, they all count towards more entries though! Good luck!

To challenge To change is GSK’s way of challenging some of the world’s biggest healthcare issues and creating change to improve people’s lives. For more information, have a look at their website here.

Competition Terms & Conditions

There is 1 prize of £100 John Lewis vouchers. The prize is non-transferable and no cash alternative is offered.
Open to UK residents aged 18 and over, excluding employees and relatives of GSK.
Closing date for entries is 6th July 2015.
Entrants must log into rafflecopter and leave a comment.
Optional entry methods are to follow on Twitter, Facebook and tweet on twitter.
The winner will be chosen at random from all valid entries.
The winner will be informed within 14 days of the closing date and will need to respond with a postal address within 28 days or a new winner will be chosen.
The winner’s name will be available on request.
The prize will be sent within 28 days of receiving the winner’s address.
Entry to this confirms that participants have read, understood and agree to be bound by these Terms and Conditions.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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I can see you……


Not really. I’m not some sort of crazed stalker. I’m talking eyes, or more specifically, eyesight.

During the half term I took both kids to get their eyes tested, as we’d had a letter in the post reminding me about H and C hadn’t ever had one at an opticians, just at the school when he was in reception. So, even though I didn’t think there was anything wrong with their eyes, I thought we may as well get them checked out.

Of course, being kids, they were both praying to be told they needed glasses, I mean, really praying. H actually owns a pair of fake geek glasses that she wears when she’s indoors, they suit her (she suits everything) and I know she think it’s ‘cool’ – or whatever the in word is – to wear them, but she doesn’t seem to realise if you need glasses, you need glasses, it’s not just about the look! Same goes for C, he has a pair as well and he actually says he has to wear them to watch telly, even though they’re fake….. interesting kids I have.

Luckily neither of them needed glasses, in fact, the optician said they had perfect vision, C was told his is ‘super-vision’ which obviously appealed to his Spiderman side! Even though they were both disappointed to be leaving without trying on every single pair of frames in the shop! For the record, both have as expensive taste as I do. It’s in our genes.

The bloke wears glasses, well, he should wear them, we never see him wearing them, I wear them occasionally when I’m reading or on the computer for a loooong time, and both my parents wear them, so I’m not sure where their super vision has come from, but I’m glad they’ve got it – even though medical technology is improving day by day, people still need glasses or lenses at the moment, this piece about Optical Express shows though, that they are trying to work out a way of eradicating it – which, if it happens in this lifetime would be good, especially for those who have to wear them all the time, including the shower! Imagine that, no being able to see all your lotions and potions because you haven’t got your goggles on. Nightmare! I probably should get my eyes tested again, and the bloke DEF needs his done, if you’re reading this husband and you should be, then get that eye test booked ASAP. No excuses!


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Petit Bateau Collection

I am sitting here, macbook in front of me, coffee beside me (I should really be studying, but I’m not) and the tumble dryer is doing it’s thing. It’s almost June, and I’m still having to use the tumble dryer. Ok, that could be down to the fact that I seem to be behind on all my washing, but in fairness, it really should be bloody warm enough to dry all my washing outside now. And it’s not.

Tumble dryer issues aside, I’m daydreaming about holidays. The bloke and I are planning on getting a last minute holiday booked during the school hols one way or another (probably cost less to build a house from scratch, but you gotta do what you gotta do) and so, summer holidays and growing children means the perfect shopping excuse. Ah come on, you knew that was coming didn’t you?

The Petit Bateau collection at Melijoe is dreamy. I’m in love with every single piece of the boys collection, even the teeny baby bits!


Sense the theme? Nautical, stripes, red white a blue with a little bit of neutral thrown in. I love dressing C in neutrals with a little bit of colour to break it up, it’s a classic look that works. Add a little pair of boat shoes? Perfect outfit for a summer holiday evening.

Shorts £34, Hooded Longall £37, Printed Sweatshirt £31, Cotton T-Shirt £12.

Post written in collaboration with Melijoe.com

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Teenage dreams…..

Both the husband and I love our sleep. Like, when we were childfree and obviously carefree we would spend hours in bed at the weekend, reading magazines, having a nap, watching tv, having a nap, eating a really late brunch, having a nap, you get the idea. So having an almost teenager who I’ve never had to wake up, literally *never* because she doesn’t actually need that much sleep and would be up at the crack of dawn regardless of what day it was since the day she was born was quite a shock to the system! (Since then we’ve had the boy who likes his sleep just as much as we do, thank god!)

When we moved to this house and she got her own floor, we thought we could create a room for her that might make her want to chill out up there, have her own space and maybe, just maybe sleep a bit longer!

It’s been an ongoing process. As she gets older, her tastes are changing, but the basics are the same. A decent bed, a good mattress, nice furniture, a chill out zone, room for her books, pictures, make up and so on. Basically a room that I’d be happy in, but teenage style.

We bought a new bed for our room, so H decided she wanted our old bed frame, an iron, four poster bed. Which was fine, but we needed to change her mattress from a single to a king size. We decided to go with a memory foam mattress, because it’s soooo comfortable, and, you know, anything to make her sleep! We added a gorgeous, fluffy, feather filled duvet and enough cushions to give the husband a heart attack each night and she was set. I have to admit to laying on H’s bed while she’s doing homework (probably distracting her) because it’s so comfy!

Obviously style is important as well as substance. And not just for H! The furniture is all white, with plenty of storage space, it’s all pretty much Ikea based stuff, sturdy, simple and nice to look at and it all doubles up as shelf space. My daughter is my daughter. She has make up, nail varnish, hair & skin products coming out of her ears. She also seems to “borrow” a lot of my stuff, never to be seen again…..! As for clothes, don’t even get me started! I’ve decided not to fold her stuff anymore, because it doesn’t seem to make it from the pile to the drawers/wardrobe in the same condition. It’s a talent she has. And yes, I’m aware of how old I sound right now….

teen room

So, has it worked? Well, she doesn’t come downstairs to wake us up anymore, because she has everything she needs in her room. TV, iPad, phone – I think if she was allowed a mini fridge up there I probably wouldn’t see her unless it was dinner time, but does she sleep longer? No. Do I have to wake her up in the mornings? No. Is she still dressed and ready to go before I even have both eyes open? Yes, of course she is. I think I’ve resigned myself to the fact that my daughter just doesn’t need that much sleep. But she does love her room & spends a lot of time up there being a teenager and doing whatever teenagers do. So it’s pretty much win win!

Thanks to Dormeo for sending H the fab mattress!


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Horse Riding in Wimbledon


Horse riding in London, in the sunshine. Doesn’t get much better than that does it? The kids were invited along to Ridgway Stables in Wimbledon a few weekends ago (I told you I’m behind on posts) by the RSPCA.

They’ve both had a couple of riding lessons, the longest one being at when we were at Center Parcs a few years ago, but neither of them had had a full, proper lesson so I knew they would love it.

We drove into Wimbledon and I have to admit, I thought I’d written the address down wrong because we couldn’t see where on earth there would be a stable never mind a few horses, but, tucked away down a side road there were loads of them! Right next to a pub, which, we found out, was an old coach house years ago. It used to own the stables and let the travellers drinking there keep their horses overnight. Love a bit of history!

The kids were introduced to their horses, C was on Toby, the oldest (and smallest) horse in the stables and H was on Bob. A huge, gorgeous horse that I would have happily taken home with me! They mounted them in the side road and then were taken off with their instructor on her horse in the middle, to hit Wimbledon Common.

We had the option of sitting in the pub having a drink or following the horses, and, for some strange reason we decided to follow the horses. Which, of course, was quite hard work because obviously, horses can walk further and faster than we can! Pub next time, definitely!

The kids absolutely loved the entire hour and we are so tempted to send them back to Ridgway Stables for some more lessons. I really want to have a go myself too, but it’s quite an expensive hobby so we might have to hold fire for a while!

The whole point of the visit was to promote the RSPCA and their rescue horses and ponies. Everyone knows they re-home dogs and cats, but I personally hadn’t thought of horses needing new homes, so it’s such a good cause. Obviously not everyone can re-home a horse (if only!) but you can donate, either money or equipment. You can find out lots more info on their website.







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Boujies London – Pink Pomelo *Discount Offer*

I think by now everyone knows how much I love scented candles, I’ve written about it enough and everyone in my real life knows, give me a decent candle over a box of chocs or a bottle of wine any day!


Give me a scented candle that hasn’t been released yet, and has the most amazing citrus-y, summer scent and, well, VERY happy!

Boujies create hand poured, aromatic candles in England, using only natural wax, the best essentials oils and fragrances inspired by nature and they’ve now created their 8th fragrance, Pink Pomelo.

It’s a really uplifting, fresh scent. It just smells of summer, with notes of grapefruit, sweet lemon and pink pomelo. It’s a really clean smell, it’s perfect for when the sun is shining (unlike today) and you want to feel energised and awake. This is a real day time candle for me, which I love, as I always light them in the evening, so now I have both!

Available from May, in either their candles, diffusers or gift set. The 100g candle is £16.00 with free standard delivery on all orders. Plus, I can give my readers (you, hi!) an exclusive discount on the new fragrance,  just enter the code BOUJIESLOVES for 10% off on order placed between the 1st and 17th May 2015.



PR Sample


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