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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….

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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

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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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LD Teen Style

It’s quite hard having an almost teenager. Especially one who has always looked older than her years. For a while now it’s been a case of having to dress in clothes that are adult styles and adult sizes because she’s so tall. Which is great for her, but just because it’s in her (adult) size, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for a 12 year old to wear.

We do the usual mother daughter argument over what she should wear, at the moment she’s into trackies and t-shirts which suits me just fine, on most occasions, but sometimes it would be nice to see her in something girlie, but not childish. See the dilemma?

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When she’s not in tracks, she’s in skinny jeans and cropped tops, so finding some decent tops to go with them is always a bonus!

Tommy Hilfiger double layered top, £33.24, Monnalisa Pineapple vest £67.00 and Lee Two Tone Top, £21.91 all from Melijoe are on the list. I know for a fact the pineapple one will be a massive hit, as she’s currently coveting a pineapple duvet cover and lamp. I might add I am also after a pineapple lamp stand but that’s neither here nor there!

These tops, skinny jeans and her Nike Air Max. Then we just need to disagree on the amount of make up she tries to sneak past me……!

Post written in collaboration with Melijoe.com

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LD Mini – Spring Fancies

It’s still cold. Wet. Grey. So miserable. In other words we’re still in the middle of what seems to be the longest winter ever. I mean, I love winter, but this is getting silly now. So, in the interest of trying to feel a little more springlike, I thought I’d do a little daydream shopping, this time for the boy.

At the weekend, if he’s not staying in his pjs {just like his mother!} my son knows exactly what he wants to wear, and heaven forbid anyone who tries to tell him otherwise. I love that he knows what fashion he likes, thankfully we’ve always managed to avoid the god awful cartoon character stuff, I had to put my foot down, when I found out he was a boy I could just see Postman Pat tees coming at me in all directions. Anyway, we like to go for the classic, but slightly off beat look. Always classic skinny trousers because he’s tall and skinny so anything else just looks like he’s wearing his big sisters jeans, or sweatpants. Good quality tees and a jumper or sweatshirt of some kind. Then of course we have to add another 5 layers to be warm enough to leave the house, but we’ll forget that for now.

I had a browse of Melijoe and managed to find a fair few outfits for them both {I’ll be doing GG’s post next month then!}

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Faded black tee from Japan Rags, Levi Skinnies, Adidas Originals {what else!} and a Kate Moss sweatshirt from Little Eleven Paris – I want this in my size! This would be, pretty much, his ‘uniform’ at weekend and during school hols, comfortable enough for him to throw himself around in, stylish enough for me to be happy. Sorted!

Post written in collaboration with Melijoe.com.

 

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Half Term Week – James Bond

I love half term. It’s a week (not too long!) of less rushing around and time to relax with the kids. I’m not such a fan of the six weeks holiday, I don’t care how much you love your kids, by the end of it you don’t want to talk to them for at least 3 weeks.

This week we have something to do almost every day, which is really nice. None of them require getting up early either, which is even nicer!

Yesterday was all about London as we had tickets to see the James Bond exhibition at the London Film Museum in Covent Garden. All the times we’ve wandered round Covent Garden, I’ve never noticed the Film Museum before, but it’s definitely on my radar now. The kids and I met the bloke in town and headed in that direction. It was, typically, p*ssing down so by the time we got there, we were soaked, but it was meant to be an adventure, so you know, all part of the fun…?

Having been bought up watching James Bond and now loving it myself (hello Daniel Craig) I was looking forward to seeing the cars, C was especially looking forward to it, he’s a serious car lover already, so I knew it would keep his attention, despite it not involving Minecraft or Xbox!

It wasn’t as big as I was expecting, when we were told to start off upstairs and work our way down, I think I was expecting upstairs to be more than a few framed images, but it was still interesting none the less. Downstairs is where everyone was mingling and snapping pictures, so we headed down there instead.

The hardcore fans out there would probably know which car was driven by which Bond without reading the accompanying descriptions, but it was a good touch to have the scenes playing behind each one. My personal fave was the car from Quantum of Solace, an Aston Martin DBS, complete with missing door and bullet holes! C was all about the green Jaguar with missiles from Die Another Day, with H also falling for an Aston Martin. Never let it be said I don’t raise kids with expensive tastes! (It’s a skill)

There was, of course, a gift shop on the way out, full of posters, pens, pencils and the Bond aftershave, but we managed to swerve that with a promise of hitting M&M world on the way home! Which I kind wish we hadn’t done because it was absolutely HEAVING in there! Imagine Ikea on a crazily busy 99% off sale day and times it by 2. What the hell!? Anyway..

It was interesting, and C loved it but I would have been annoyed if I’d headed there for an entire day. I think it took us just as long to get there as it did to walk round it, which was fine as we had planned it to be part of the day, not *the* day. But then I suppose it all depends on how long you decide to stay there, if you added in coffee and lunch in the cafe and took the audio tour I’m sure you’d be there a couple of hours.

The concession prices were pretty reasonable, £9.50 per ticket, but for larger families it still adds up! It was an experience though, and it’s pretty cool to say you saw Bonds car in the half term!

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Chocolate Fix

I love baking. Like, real baking, cakes, biscuits and more cakes. I don’t find it enjoyable sharing the baking with the kids, I’m not that sort of parent (which I think I’ve discussed before!) The mess, the fact that they just want to lick the bowl more than anything else and the fact that the cakes never quite turn out right. I know, I know. I’m a terrible person! It doesn’t mean they don’t bake, it just means they have their cakes, I have mine and never the twain shall meet.

Apart from the cake we made for Valentines Day.

Usually, I make my cakes from scratch, I find it really relaxing weighing everything out and sifting it all into my bowl, but the kids like to get it from bowl to plate as quickly as possible, so ready to mix kits are a godsend, like the Devils Food Cake mix from Betty Crocker. Hello simple but tasty!

I just left them to it. H being the sensible one (cough) was in charge, and C was the gofer. Between them they managed to add the missing ingredients of egg, water and oil and combine it together to make a pretty good looking batter. We (the royal we!) then transferred it to the cake tins, whacked it in the oven for the required time and got on with the important jobs of cleaning the kitchen and licking the bowls, spoons and anything else that seemed to be covered in raw cake mix.

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Once the oven had pinged and the cake was cool enough to ice (and we’d sorted out the argument over vanilla or chocolate flavoured icing) we set about filling the two cakes with buttercream and then smothering the entire thing with even more. Both kids started off icing, but once they started dragging bits of sponge with them, they decided to let me take over! I ended up using an entire tub of the ready made icing, because I thought it would be better than letting it go to waste, but to be honest, the cake was probably swimming in it! A little flourish of a heart in sprinkles and it was good to go! Nice and easy, quick and kept them quiet for at least half an hour! Plus I got to eat a slice of chocolate heaven with my cuppa. Not too shabby!

They’re going to attempt cookies and brownies in the half term too, at this rate I won’t be fitting in my jeans when they go back to school!

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