Archive for July 2017

Me & Mine - July 2017

Monday, 31 July 2017

Joining up with the Me and Mine Family Portrait Project with these photos of our family for July.



They were taken right at the beginning of the month when we celebrated Mr MoaB's Birthday with his family.

July Highs:
  • - The 1st of the month is Mr MoaB's Birthday. We celebrated it with a little party with his family at his Mum's house. We were lucky with the weather and got to spend the afternoon out in the garden. 
  • - I took the kids to our nearest farm - Hayrack Church Farm.  
  • - The month has brought with it a mixed bag of weather but when it has been hot, we've enjoyed having lots of fun in the garden, particularly with water play including our new snake sprinkler and water bombs!
  • - It will soon be time for Little Miss A to leave her pre-school and start school! Mr MoaB and I attended her Nursery Leaver's Concert. She's never done anything like that before in front of an audience so we were so proud. It was such a lovely production. The nursery staff had done such a good job. 
  • - Mr MoaB and I took a little wander to find the local Frodsham Caves. It was a great discovery. We'll have to go back with a torch so we can explore a bit more. 
  • - I took the kids to the CBBC Summer Social event in Manchester. It was a fab day out. Little Miss A loved meeting all the different characters. 
  • - Mr MoaB and I have managed to have a few days to ourselves whilst the kids have been at nursery and have taken advantage to enjoy some time together with lunch dates and a bit of culture with a visit to Chester Town Hall and Cathedral. 
  • - I was forttunate enough to win tickets to the Jurassic Kingdom dinosaur encounter event in Manchester. In the lead up to going I did lots of dinosaur themed activities to get us in the mood. Roar! 
  • - This month I also had my Birthday. The big 4-0! We took a trip down to Brighton so that I could see some of my best friends. The day itself brought with it breakfast in bed and a nice dinner prepared by Mr MoaB. Unfortunately he had to work as he'd taken the weekend off for us to go to Brighton but I didn't mind. I took the kids out for the day to Carr Farm Garden Centre to do a Super Hero Trail and have lunch. We have a child-free weekend planned later in the year to look forward to as well. 
  • - We visited the Blue Planet Aquarium for the first time this month with Mr MoaB's Mum, sister and her 2 children. It was great to see how much interest Master R paid to the fishes. 
  • - Little Miss A took part in her first gymastics routine this month. I also did an interview with Total Gymnastics which run the classes she does. 
  • - We've been fortunate to have two sets of visitors all in the last couple of days of the month. Both on their way back down to the South Coast from visits up North. A friend came to visit us at home and got roped in to playing lots of games with Little Miss A but we managed to catch up a little bit inbetween! We met our second visitors at Delamere Forest for lunch and then did the Gruffalo Trail with them (for the second time that day!). 

July Lows:
  • - I am so very behind with writing blog posts that I don't know where to begin with catching up. It's frustrating but I do really want to keep up with them as it's so important to have a record of our days out etc for the kids as they get older. Hopefully I'll get back on track soon. 
  • - More cancer treatment. This month I have had a Portacath inserted into my arm so that my drugs can be administered through it. I wasn't getting on with cannulas. It was quite a quick procedure really and has healed remarkably well. 

The Me + Mine Project - Dear Beautiful

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My Sunday Photo 30-07-2017

Sunday, 30 July 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


I celebrated my 40th Birthday this week. Quite a milestone. So my choice of picture this week had to be one taken on the Big Day! Mr MoaB treated e to Breakfast in Bed but then had to go to work so it was me and the kids. I got a lovely dinner cooked for me when Mr MoaB got home so I did feel spoilt. We spent the weekend before in Brighton and we have a child-free weekend planned for later in the year.

OneDad3Girls

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My Sunday Photo 23-07-2017

Sunday, 23 July 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.



Me and the boy taken yesterday in Brighton. Mr MoaB and I used to live in Brighton and it has been far too long since our last visit. It was Master Riley's first visit down and he loved being on the beach. Such a great weekend catching up with friends.


OneDad3Girls

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My Sunday Photo 16-07-2017

Sunday, 16 July 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


This was taken on the morning of Little Miss A's transition day for her new big school. I love the cuddle she's giving her Daddy.

I accompanied her for an afternoon session on Thursday but then she went in on her own for a full day on Friday. She got to wear her uniform and looked so grown up. She handled it all so well and walked in to her new class so confidently. When I picked her up she was buzzing as didn't stop talking the whole way home! So proud of her.


OneDad3Girls

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Siblings - July 2017

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Joining up with The Siblings Project with these photos of Little Miss A and Master R (have made the switch from calling him 'Baby R' as he's no longer a baby but a toddler!). 


The month started with Mr MoaB's Birthday so this first picture was taken for him! 



Master R has no idea who Peppa Pig is but Little Miss A was excited to meet her! Master R was trying to wriggle away from Little Miss A but I just managed to capture one picture of them with Peppa at the Manchester Children's Book Festival we went to. Master R wants to get much more involved with things now that he's on his feet so I'm now having trouble keeping up with both of them!



This month has brought with it lots of play time in the garden and it's been so much fun now that the kids are actually playing together. Previously Little Miss A has very much done her own thing and Master R has just pottered about but now they're interacting so much more. We bought this new snake sprinkler toy and it was definitely a good purchase as they both enjoy playing with it.

With Little Miss A starting school in September, I'm trying to pack as much in to the next few weeks with both of them. Seeing them play together makes me smile so much. I love how their relationship is growing and strengthening. I think Master R is really going to miss his big sister when she's not around as much.


The Siblings Project - Dear Beautiful

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Hayrack Church Farm - A Review

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

A review of Hayrack Church Farm - a small, friendly farm in Thornton le Moors. It's on the A5117 road between Helsby and Cheshire Oaks.

At least a couple of times a week we drive past Hayrack Church Farm so it's been on our list to pay a visit! Last week provided the perfect opportunity as I needed something to do with the kids but didn't want to go too far.

As we entered the Cafe, Little Miss A immediately spotted the Reptile Room so this is where we started. Creatures included tortoises, terrapins, snakes, bearded dragons, an iguana and more. Little Miss A kept wanting to be lifted up to get a better look at the snakes - I'm really not a fan so was holding her up whilst looking the other way! She just kept saying 'Wicked'!

We then paid our entrance fee and headed out to the farm. There was much more variety of animals than I was expecting. The usual suspects of goats, sheep, rabbits, cows but also the more unusual such as Raccoon Dogs and Asian Foxes.



I had Master R in his pushchair and it was easy enough to push him around on the paths. I let him loose when we were in the play area.

It was really quiet when we visited. We were there a couple of hours and there were just 3 other adults each with a child.

We popped in to the cafe for a hot chocolate half way through our visit. There's a good range of food and drink on offer. Plus a variety of ice-cream.

Little Miss A was keen to go in the play area. The equipment is definitely aimed at her age and above. It was a shame there wasn't anything suitable for Master R, not even a baby swing.









I'd previously seen on Hayrack Church Farm Facebook page that there was a soft play room that was free and open term time however I think this must have stopped as the room was empty where it looked like this was. A real shame as this would have definitely been a bonus and we'd have spent longer there.

Signage in the car park could be better. I drove in but then doubted I was in the right place at all. You have to enter through what looks like a front door and this takes you in to the cafe. Then from there you go through to the farm.

Next door to the Cafe is a Butcher's and Farm Shop which we didn't visit.

It costs £2 per person to go around the farm (under 2s are free). You can also purchase bags of animal feed.

For a couple of hours out it was good to visit this farm. Little Miss A has asked to go back so I'm sure we will at some point but the let down for me is that there's not enough to entertain Master R as there was no soft play and nothing in the play area he could go on. A real shame as it is so local.

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CBBC Summer Social 2017

Sunday, 9 July 2017

We had a fab time today at the CBBC Summer Social event at MediaCityUK. Lots of fun in the sun and all for free!

Today I braved going in to Manchcester again on my own with the kids. This time it was to attend the CBBC Summer Social event. I'm so pleased we went as we all had a great time.


I hadn't told Little Miss A about what we were up to other than that there would be characters. I didn't say who in case we didn't get the chance to see specific ones. So she was intrigued about where we were going. The walk from the car park built up Little Miss A's excitement as we passed a big CBeebies window and saw an Upsey Daisy and Pudsey statue. This boded well!





As soon as we arrived, we headed to the Shaun the Sheep Championsheep zone and played in the soft play area plus Little Miss A had a go at welly throwing. Our first character meet was Shaun himself!



Other character meets included Funella from Furchester Hotel, Ubercorn & Grandmaster Glitch from Go Jetters, Danger Mouse (and Little Miss A got to sit in his Mark IV Danger Car) and Pudsey Bear!






There were a few craft areas and Little Miss A decorated a flower for the Clangers garden and also designed a piece to be added to the Marrying Mum & Dad Wedding dress. Master R was most happy when he was let loose out of his pushchair to just dance away. He loved being by the stage with the music!








At various times we spotted some of the CBBC presenters doing their live links from the event.

Some activities were aimed at older children as it was a CBBC event rather than CBeebies but there was definitely enough for her to do and more than enough of the CBeebies characters to keep happy! She's just starting to watch a few things on CBBC occasionally so did know who Danger Mouse was.

Another highlight for Little Miss A was watching John Farnworth on the stage doing his Football Magic. This definitely left an impression on her as tonight she's been trying to recreate some of his freestyle tricks!



There was a treasure hunt to do around the event which meant that we got a bag of free sweets! We collected these and then took a wander and found the Bubble Zorb Arena. I wish we'd gone to this area earlier on in the day as there was a massive queue and it was boiling hot, but Little Miss A desperately wanted a go and I really didn't fancy dealing with a meltdown from her. She did really enjoy it and when we talked about her favourite things of the day, this was one of them!



Looking at the map on the way back, there were a few areas that we didn't go to but we'd done more than enough by the time we left. Both kids slept the whole way home!

We set off early and I'm really glad we did as we it just got busier and busier as the day wore on and I was ready to leave by lunchtime when it was starting to get too hot and I was starting to find it difficult to keep track of where Little Miss A was amongst all the people.

This was such a good event and I can't believe it was all for free. I hope it is an annual event and we can go again next year as I enjoyed it along with the kids.




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My Sunday Photo 09-07-2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


A rare shot of me with the kids! We went to the CBBC Summer Social event today in Manchester. A fab free event with the opportunity to meet lots of characters including Funella from Furchester Hotel.


OneDad3Girls

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Things To Do, See, Experience & More Now I Am 4!

Monday, 3 July 2017

When Little Miss A turned 4, I wanted to write a new list of things for her to do, see and experience. I've been compiling the list but the post has been sat in my drafts for a while!

Her Things To Do Now I Am 2 list was a success and I did have a draft list of things for her to do as a 3 year old, but the year has passed by with a lot of other life events taking place. However, now we have a whole new area to explore since our move up North, I think it would be fun to have a list this year. Obviously Master R will tag along on most of these and I'll reuse Little Miss A's Things To Do Before I Am 2 list for him.




















Here's Little Miss A's list of 'Things To Do, See, Experience & More Now I Am 4':

  1. Climb a mountain
  2. Do a picture scavenger hunt
  3. Go on a family bike ride
  4. Learn a Christmas carol
  5. Go to a trampoline park
  6. Go bowling
  7. Swim in the sea
  8. Go ice skating
  9. Visit a snow dome/ski centre
  10. See the Blackpool Illuminations
  11. Learn to ride a bike without stabilisers
  12. Go on a Christmas lights hunt
  13. See a National landmark
  14. Swing through the trees again on a Go Ape Junior course
  15. Stroke an animal not touched before
  16. Go on a boat ride
  17. Learn to write her full name
  18. Ride a horse
  19. Go on a plane
  20. Go to a festival
The first 3 on the list are the things that we didn't manage to tick off her 2 year old list so I have carried these over.

Most of the items on this new list are first experiences - things Little Miss A hasn't done before. However, a few we have done before but I'm really keen to do again.

Let me know if you have anything you'd add to this list!

If you like this list, then please do take a look at how we got on with her original list in the Final Update on Things To Do Before I'm 2 and also her 'Things To Do Now I Am 2' list.



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My Sunday Photo 02-07-2017

Sunday, 2 July 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


Little Miss A and her Dad playing swing ball! It only got really competitive when Mr MoaB and I had a game!

This picture was taken today in the garden of Mr MoaB's Mum. We spent the weekend up there celebrating Mr MoaB's Birthday yesterday.

OneDad3Girls

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