Sunday, 20 March 2016

A very hippy week...

This week has been quite a calm week for me which is unusual but much needed.

As I haven't had much on this week (which was fully appreciated after the crazy previous months!) I decided to take everything at a slower pace.

I am a bit of an modern day hippy chick deep down and every so often the hippy-ness in me shines right through!

It's interesting because this week, I have noticed that it's been very apparent in me, must be because of the slower pace of life this week or something.

So this week, I started my Spring cleaning. I have took all all the curtains down, washed, dried, ironed and popped them back up, I've started washing the pillows, I have cleaned all light shades and fittings, I have cleaned and polished all pictures, photographs and frames.

I have deep cleaned the bathroom including all the tiles and grout.

I have pulled everything thing out of every kitchen cupboard, scrubbed, dried and replaced pans, baking stuff and food carefully checking the dates. I even climbed up on the units to clean the very top of them.

I have washed the kettle, toaster, microwave, tea, coffee, sugar caddies and all other stuff and then cleared the worktops to wash the tiles and scrub the tops. Then I put everything back.

I then pulled all shelves and salad boxes from the fridge, washed them in hot soapy water, washed down inside and outside the fridge and put everything back.

I cleaned the cooker and oven. Pulled the racks out, washed and then scrubbed the oven and hobs. Dried and out everything back. I then pulled out the cooker, fridge and washing machine to brush behind the and to wash and dry the floor and then push everything back into place.

So I have made a good start on the Spring clean but there is more to do before I can sign it off.

In between cleaning, I came across a bag of almonds that I had forgotten about. The date on them was okay and even tasting one they were fine so I decided I was going to bake something to use them up.
I have said before how I cannot stand food waste or any kind of waste so if anything needs using up, I tend to make something with it and give it to the boyf to eat :)

I had some Celeriac and Walnut soup for lunch that I had made previously but we had no bread to go with it. So that was the decision made. I would bake some bread with almonds.

The bread turned out yummy as the added almonds gave a nice sweetness to it.

The family came round for tea that night and scoffed the rest of one of the breads with their meal :)

As per my New Year resolution to grow at least one vegetable, I am concious that we are now officially in Spring so I need to get sowing.

Yesterday, I had a quiet spot in the afternoon as DS was resting I took advantage of the free time and planted some Broad bean and Spring Onion seeds.

I also have some carrot seeds but is still a little early to plant them yet.

Fingers crossed that I have some sort of success with these.

And lastly, another hippy side of me was to acknowledge and take part in Earth hour last night. so at 8.30pm all lights went out and DS and I sat all snuggled up in bed with just the warm glow of candles around us.
It was so lovely and calming that both DS and I really enjoyed it, in fact, we didn't put any lights back on all evening and the candlelight was too pretty to ruin it.

So a very eco-warrier or very a hippy week. I'll let you decide.......:)

Wishing you a very happy first day of Spring! :)

Love Amanda xx

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Thrifty Furniture Re-Vamps...

Every girl loves a bargain! :)
But what is even better than an absolute bargain of bargains?? Getting something you want or need FREE!

That's exactly what I did! (can you tell that I am pretty chuffed about that!?) :) :)

I think most parents of children and young adults will nod their heads in agreement with me reading this when I say that things get broken, trashed and demolished pretty quickly in our house.

Some things aren't used by DS as per their purpose, DS is a little monkey for climbing and standing on things that cannot take his weight now (he is 8) so they break and crumble beneath him.

The Peppa Pig kitchen he got for Christmas ended up being slung by February as it was no longer 'fit for purpose' shall we say...........after a quick risk assessment on it with bits snapped off and poking out sharp pieces from it bailing under the strain of him standing on it, I deemed its short little life over.

Another example is our dining table chairs. They certainly take some knocks from him but even two of those decided enough was enough and made their journey to chair heaven.

So I was chairless.

Being the savvy sista that I am, I spotted two (very sturdy looking) solid wood traditional pine chairs on my local freecycle site, so I dived right in and very politely asked if I could be considered for them.

A few hours later, I got a 'ping' in my inbox asking when I would like to collect them :)

They were a bit scuffed, which is to be expected. The man kept apologising for it  - he was so lovely!

They were perfect, I got them home and gave them a good scrub up to get them clean.

Now with a pine table and four pine chairs, it was all looking a bit too 'piney' (yes I have just made the word piney up) and bland for me.
I wanted to inject some colour into this area with a bit of quirkiness thrown in there too.

So as the freecycle chairs were the most scuffed, I decided that they were going to be the ones that I was going to work on.

I spray painted one of them lime green and the other red, allowed them to dry and then gave them a second coat.

Once completely dry, I got my sandpaper and started to distress away :)

I am not one for pristine perfect furniture, I like vintage and shabby chic looks so these were coming up a treat and definitely to my style.

I am really pleased with the finished look and love even more that I have a new look for virtually no expense!

I don't think I know one family that at least one parent has not had to come out of paid work to manage their caring role, hospital, school and other specialist appointments - it does get a bit crazy at times!

As a result, a family will lose an income therefore being a bit clever with what you have is certainly no bad thing in my book ;)

Plus my favourite bit about this is that I like to think that I have re-used something that was being discarded by someone else and saved it going into landfill.:)

As they say, one's man trash is another man's treasure :)

Have a good week :)

Love Amanda xx

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Easter Garden Party...

Well I don't know about you but this Winter coupled with the wet and miserable weather certainly seems to be dragging on for me.

I long for warmer and dry days where I can potter around in the garden and even having my morning cup of tea sitting out there in my favourite spot overlooking the acres and acres of fields.

Now we are in March, the promise of Springtime is just about flickering through and letting us know it isn't too far away :)

As we are coming up to Easter, which is one of my favourite times of the year by the way, that's usually the time DS starts playing out in the garden again.

As I have mentioned before, DS is definitely an outdoor boy so he is eager for Springtime to hurry up too :)

Thinking about garden toys for DS, I have been looking online at the Debenhams site and have listed a few of his favourite outdoor garden toys for his own little Easter party celebration :)

Here they are....

1. Despicable Me Minion Made Scooter.

DS has been working really hard on his balancing skills and has mastered the balance and co-ordination of riding around on a scooter so I know he would love this!
We have a very slight slope in our garden which DS has quickly identified as his scooter flight-path and seriously, who DOESN'T love Minions?! ;)

2. Intex 10" x 30" Easy Set Pool.

This looks awesome! DS would be amazed to see something like this in our garden as he has always been a water baby! I often say that I think he is half boy and half fish and need to check him for gills as he can swim under water for longer than I am comfortable with! 
Whilst on holiday in Northern Spain two years ago, he self-taught himself to swim under water and I was forever scooping him back up to the surface as I felt he had been under too long (apparently, I was told that I was being too over-protective and cautious!) but seriously this pool would be a major hit with the Superstar! :)

3. Plum 5 Rung Rope Ladder.

I seriously got very excited when I spotted this! DS is very much a climber. He can pretty much climb up a straight wall and is always looking for opportunities to climb  - though not always safely :(
This would be ideal to satisfy that little Spiderman need of his but in a safe way. 
This is definitely going on our Easter wish list :)

4. Plum Bush Baby Wooden Garden Swing Set.

This swing set would give DS that vestibular buzz that he craves. The back and to motion would calm any anxieties whilst giving him some enjoyable feedback. 
I like how strong and sturdy it looks which would be perfect pitched in our garden :)

5. Re:Creation Fuze Bike Bubbler.

DS loves bubbles! He loves imitating the 'pop' sound and likes blowing them in different directions.
This is no ordinary bubble machine but is actually a bubble machine that attaches to the child's bike leaving a trail of pretty bubbles whilst they zoom off.
DS has come on leaps and bounds learning to ride his special needs trike and this would be added bonus to his trike.
I can see it being a great motivator for him to pedal faster in order to see the trail of bubbles he leaves behind :D
A great toy invention! :)

So there's our Easter Garden Party wishlist, now we just need some sunshine to complete our party :)

This is my entry into Debenhams Children's Easter Toys Blogger Competition :)

Love Amanda xx

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

International Women's Day...

Today is international women's day and I am all over it! :)
I  have wished the fabulous women in my life a very happy day and if you are a woman too then I wish you the same, if you are a parent or carer of someone with autism then I also salute you :) :)

Short post today as I have to dash!

Have a great day!

Love Amanda