This week I have been….

Reconnecting…we’ve finally moved back into our OWN house after three years of planning and executing our renovation!  Our dream has always been to have a sunny, open, light family space that is understated and simple and which enables us to just live simply and enjoy life and each other with minimal fuss and we’ve done it.  We have spent our time and money on the design rather than expensive, flashy stuff and it was definitely the right thing for us to do.  It’s exactly what we wanted.  Now we can just enjoy it.


Listening to… the Desert Island Disks Podcast.  Thanks to Emma Louise Trotter of The Life Edit for reminding me just how great it is, she wrote her own: Desert Island Disks and it is superbly written, she is one cool, inspiring young lady and entrepreneur (what she doesn’t know about social media and blogging is not worth knowing!)  Well, thanks and I’m addicted to it and you will be too.  Download the podcast and search for your favourite person.  It transforms a boring journey or bathroom cleaning session into an education and an inspiration!  Judy Dench, Stephen Fry, Guy Garvey, Mary Portas, a-maz-ing.

Desert Island Disks podcast on Iphone with a cup of tea

Reminding…myself to choose simplicity and enjoy my children while they’re still young enough to want to spend time with us.  We were sat having dinner tonight after a full week of school, ready to begin half term.  We had all finished eating, J went to make a quick phone call and I was about to spring up in ‘let’s get this mess cleared up sharpish’ mode, when I stopped myself, focussed on the present moment, reminded myself of what’s important and decided to just listen to my children tell me about themselves and their day, without judgement.  I really listened, it was lovely.  It was a special part of today, and so simple, just connecting and listening.  Every other meaningless task really can wait.



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This week I have been…

Creating… a craft cabinet for all of our craft supplies, which are used regularly by our children for creating art, craft and design projects.  They love it, and since we no longer have ‘screen time’ in the mornings at the weekend, they can often be found sat at the table creating, sometimes in silence on their own, sometimes nattering together or listening to music, all whilst we have a much needed lie-in or in-bed-catch-up (no innuendoes thank you!) with a nice cup of tea! They amaze me at what they create, I bloomin’ love it!  Here are yesterday’s creations:

creative art and craft for kids

Glittery dino

creative kids ideas

Barcelona badge

children's craft ideas

Life cycle of a flower

happy creative kids


Here’s the craft cabinet:

organised craft supplies for kids, best art and craft cabinet for kids


The craft supplies in each drawer are:

Paper, card (different colours, sizes and textures)

Pens, pencils, colours, felts

Scissors, glue, sellotape, hole punch, paper fasteners, stapler (teach how to use safely)

Blank cards and envelopes

Lollypop sticks

Pipe cleaners

Felt scraps

Fabric scraps






Googly eyes

Funky tapes




Tip: keep paint and glitter in either a locked container in the cabinet or somewhere out of their reach, so that they have to come to you to be able to use it and so then you are aware that they are using it and enable appropriate use (such as on a tray or newspaper, so that the excess glitter can be poured back into the containers).   I’m quite laid back about mess, but realised I could make the clean up easier for everyone by monitoring glitter and paint use.



Experimenting…with the challenging of not buying anything new for three months.  In a simplicity/minimalist blog I was reading recently, a family is doing a year long challenge of not buying anything new for that time.  My husband thinks it’s a bit gimmicky and prefers this idea:

Waiting one month between thinking you need/want to buy something (a large-ish purchase) and actually buying it. (from Clutterfree with Kids, Joshua Becker, author of the blog Becoming Minimalist.

I have personally decided to challenge myself to not buy anything new for one month with a view to repeating it again for the next month and so on.  Whichever route one chooses I just like the shift in thinking that it creates.  From the default switch being set to buy (and think about it afterwards), to being set to don’t buy (and think about what else you could do to get what you need or achieve what it is you need the item for, could you borrow it or buy it second hand).  You get me?  Hope so.

Book clu

Setting…up a book club.  I used to be in a book club but then we moved away from the area.  I really enjoyed my time in the club, I met some lovely, interesting people and read some truly great books that I would not otherwise have thought to pick up.  After trying to find an already established book club in our current area and finding that they’re all full, I’ve decided to set one up myself.  There’s tonnes of help and guidance online on how to go about doing it.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Have a smashing bank holiday weekend!

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This week I have been…

Reading… The Book Lovers by Victoria Connelly, a simple, uplifting, wholesome, lovely read, I’m enjoying it.


Planning… My kitchen garden.  (Ha Ha, I have three small raised beds! but I just like the sound of that: my kitchen garden, it makes me happy).  Anyway, yes we are going to try growing what we actually like eating and what we buy each week.  So first on my list is beetroot, apparently really easy to grow, we can eat it fresh and pickle it too, so quite versatile.  Next is cherry tomatoes, which the kids eat like sweets, we will grow ‘Tumbling Tom’ in hanging baskets, planting three plants in each basket and this year I WILL water them EVERY day, and hopefully we’ll get some lovely fruit.  Next there’s peas, again we eat them purely as snacks, raw, they don’t even tend to make it into the house, let alone into a pan to be cooked!  I’ll grow salad leaves in pots on the patio, one of the pots I’ll re-sew every couple of days to get a continuous supply and another pot I’ll sew ‘cut and come again’ salad leaves.

Garden planner

We have a blueberry bush in a pot and I will plant three raspberry plants in a pot too, although I’m confused as to when I should be doing this?!

I’m tempted by carrots too, because apparently their flavour is sooooo different when home grown compared with shop bought.  Let me know if you have any other (easy) recommendations.  I’ve just joined a gardening club, which meets once a month, it’s a class run by a professional horticulturist, I have attended my first session and we all came away with a Dahlia tuber which we planted up whilst there, it has just in the last couple of days germinated and has sprouted a little shoot, it never ceases to amaze me how something so shrivelled and dead looking can do that!!!

Loving… Minimalism in our home, and simplicity in our life, luckily my husband is fully on board with this and the kids are embracing it too.  I am going to write a separate post on this soon, so look out for that.

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