Saturday, 22 October 2016

Project 366 week 42


The sunrise is getting later, and I loved the pink tinge to the fluffy clouds as I left for work.


Hubby had an appointment for a scan this morning. He has waited for eleven weeks for it, to be told the scan he was sent for is not the right one for what he was complaining of. So back to the GP and ask again.
While we were waiting on hubby Lilly and I made use of the paths round the hospital and went for a walk. Here is the hospital from our walk.


Coffee morning at the complex. Today the couple I made the cushion for had a cake and a small party. They tell me they loved the cushion.


DD2 and Ziggy are down for a few days. I popped Ziggy in her sling and took her for a walk with the dog. Best picture I could get of her from in her sling.


DD1 and SIL wanted to go shopping and Bob was away with the other grandparents so DD2 and I took the gruesome twosome to the park.


Ziggy is such a happy wee thing, rarely cries and sleeps all night.Unlike Spud who for all she is also a happy content baby at 7 months is still up two or three times a night.


Finally got round to sorting out my messy box of threads the other day. Think it will be a long while until I run out. Some originally came from DD1 and others have been kits I have picked up in the charity shop that while I may not like the design the threads never go wrong.

Monday, 17 October 2016

The world seemed a better place when I was growing up. #brightFuture

I have taken up a challenge to discuss #brightFuture .

Unilever’s #brightFuture initiative focuses on small changes that can make big differences and how we can build a world where everyone lives well and lives sustainably. Since the launch of the Sustainable Living Plan, Unilever has helped 482 million people to improve their health and hygiene, including through hand washing, improving self-esteem and oral hygiene.

I suppose every generation says it of the next generation down but the world seemed a better place
DD3 and two friends Darvel Park Jan 2001
when I was growing up. Hot Summers with long lazy days out on our bikes, playing on the beach or wandering off down the park all day with a jam sandwich wrapped in a bread wrapper We had the freedom pretty much to do what we wanted, our parents did not worry as it was normal to disappear for six or eight hours at a time as long as we were home for tea. We would spend all day by the open air swimming pool and did not have the knowledge to know to use sun screen. Not to mention the proper cold snow filled winters, where we used our sledges regularly and built snow men bigger than us. I remember one year hollowing one out and deciding to put the contents of the fridge in it over night, and my parents going nuts at me because the milk was frozen in the morning.  

When it was normal to thrown half a dozen kids in the back of the car and set off for the day. Long before seat belts and car seats existed. We hitchhiked the six miles home from school on the days they shut the school early and did not run the bus until the normal time. At that point I may add we lived very remote on what seemed to me to the very end of Scotland and apart from Military Vehicles and personnel there was little used the road so we were relatively safe. 
The grass may have always seemed green and the world idyllic and parents of today are horrified at some of this.  But then maybe previous generations had it wrong as well, go back a few more generations and we were sending children up chimneys, making them work in factories and sending them to work in the mines - so maybe it was not really the good old days for any previous generations. 

  • This is exemplified in the work undertaken by Domestos that has committed to helping 25 million people gain improved access to a toilet by 2020. Access to clean sanitation can protect people from preventable diseases, reduce mortality rates, help reduce school dropout rates and improve quality of life.

But how can we stop our children looking back and saying my parents were the generation responsible for this or that, or do you remember when such and such was normal? The controversial topic of the moment is Brexit. Will my great great grandchildren look back in fifty years and wonder how we could have got it so wrong? Or will they see it as the best vote this generation ever made. Joining the EEC as it was at the time was also controversial and made for a very large divide at the time as well. Will Brexit help to build a brighter future for them? Only time will tell. 

I think knowledge and understanding is a great place to start. Teaching your children about the world round them. Making them aware of how they as individuals fit into the bigger picture. How the small things they can do have a much bigger impact. I remember as children my mother turning on the tap when we brushed our teeth and left it running the whole time. Water meters have put an end to this for most people.We have never had a  water meter but my children were taught to use a cup of water to dip their brush in and then a mouthful to rinse with. Having said that modern thinking on teeth cleaning is a dry brush and no rinse so some evolving ideas are good for us.

getting wet and muddy
Last year when we visited the Falkirk Wheel the older two grandchildren spent some time in the water play area and part of that area is a pedal bike. It taught the children that in areas like Malawi some women spend all day pedalling a stationary bike that is used to bring water to the surface, no pedalling no water. We take running water for granted, and every day things that involve running water help to keep us healthy. From loading the dish washer to popping a washing in the machine or bathing the grandchildren are all just taken for granted.  Just as well really the state the twins are in when we have been to the park. Minky loves puddles, and mud. Using a shorter wash at 30 degrees with Persil is all that is needed for most washing, helping to make a #brightFuture for our children and our planet.

  • Persil encourages our children to get outside and play, inspiring them to grow and learn in an interactive way.

an autumnal tree
I had never heard of  things like a CO2 footprint when I was a child, but again education on such subjects is standard in modern thinking.  Joni Mitchell in her song Big Yellow Taxi has the verse "They took all the trees, And put 'em in a tree museum, And they charged the people A dollar and a half to seem 'em" . This at the time it was recorded was a very forward thinking lyric, but maybe not far from the truth.

Fifi has been taught about palm oil at school, and thus has insisted her mum does not buy products containing it. We all know it was readily used in a very large number of products for years without us really giving much thought to what it is or how it is grown. But now they realise the ecological damage it does by devastating rain forest and destroying the natural habitats of countless species of animals. Not to mention robbing the indigenous people of their land and thus their livelihoods. Palm oil use to be listed under various names but thanks to Paignton Zoo and EAZA all products sold must state on their packaging they contain palm oil. 

  • Six out of ten parents saying that they have started to live in a ‘greener’ way at home at the suggestion of their children.

Look back on how much the world has come on, back in the 1930's people went to the cinema to watch news reels, in the 1940's and 50's which in relative terms is the blink of an eye, people began to bring televisions into their homes, Few programmes were made and the news was a sombre affair watched by adults. Then along came Multi Coloured Swap Shop, that I use to watch to see Noel Edmonds,  that launched John Cravens News Round, a news programme made for children, This went on to have a slot of its own Monday to Friday and nowadays you get news programmes made by children for children.  The few channels that did exist stopped broadcasting after the ten o'clock news and I remember them closing down for the evening by playing the national anthem.  Fast forward to today and television runs 24/7 with more channels than anyone can begin to watch.

  • Furthermore, Persil has backed a global initiative ‘Learning for Tomorrow’ partnering with UNICEF to help give children in some of the world’s toughest areas the opportunity of a quality education.

 The internet also contains so much information. Children are much more aware of the world around them and we all know about the plight of the children in war torn Syria or a devastation tsunami or hurricane, they are aware of the work charities like UNICEF do, and I think every school child in Britain has been involved in some respect with Children in Need. Children learn compassion for their fellow man in a way my generation did not.

The internet of course leads to its own set of problems. Is the ten year old boy your child talking to on line really another ten year old boy or an adult grooming him? Thanks to discussions we have we can empower our children and make them more aware of potential dangers and I know my daughter tracks closely online what Fifi does. We can teach them to stay safe but more to the point speak about any concerns they may have or anything that is worrying them in a way I would never have done with my parents. In my day children were seen and not heard. Thank fully now children are seen as valued members of the family with opinions of their own, opinions they are encouraged to vocalise. In my opinion maybe they are given chance to be too opinionated and appear over indulged. 

old fashioned way of learning?

  • Equipping our children with confidence is essential and we can help in achieving this by providing them with the right resources. The Dove Self-Esteem Project has worked closely with leading psychologists, academics and experts to create materials, making a positive impact on 19 million young lives

sustainable power 
When the grandchildren stay over they like to cook and bake. This teaches them valuable skills and we can discuss healthy options. The world is riddled with illnesses caused by unhealthy eating habits. I would like to think part of the legacy I pass onto my grandchildren, as I did to my children is the skill to fend for themselves and cook meals from scratch.  They have been using sharp knives to chop the vegetables since they were about four, they have to learn how to use dangerous items in a safe manner. Both the older grandchildren were capable of cooking a full roast dinner by the time they were ten. Ten years ago when cooking the food we would have had to put on the oven on to make a few cakes but now we can reduce our power usage by using a cake maker or the halogen oven, a much more environmentally friendly option, not to mention the difference in the bills over a year. 

This post is an entry for BritMums #brightFuture Challenge, sponsored by Unilever

Sunday, 16 October 2016

My Sunday Photo week 12

A walk along the beach the other day, at the point the river runs under the bridge and meets the sea.
Spotted the cygnets as they got swept past rather fast as they must have got caught in a current, they looked like something from a theme park as they hurtled by at a huge rate of knots.


Saturday, 15 October 2016

Project 366 week 41

I will share a laugh with you. About ten days ago I had just pulled into the drive way and was getting out the car when a parcel delivery van pulled up and said he had a parcel for me. So I signed for it and took it in. Looked at it and knowing I had not ordered it thought it must be a competition win. Decided it would do Ziggy next Christmas and it was put in the loft.
Was pm'ing my neighbour about other things during the week and she mentioned a missing parcel, turns out the parcel was hers and the driver and delivered it to the wrong house. The writing on the label was minute and I have to say I did not even look, just popped it in the loft. Oops!! Luckily enough she saw the funny side of it.


Loved the colour of the sky at sunset tonight,


A walk down the sea shore with hubby and the dog. Spotted the feather with raindrops on and really quite liked it.


Got a phone call from daughter to see if I fancied taking the twins out so she could get an hours sleep, so we took Spud as well. Spud is not overly well with a sticky eye and a sore throat and ears. This is Spud's first time in a swing.


Finished the cross stitch cushion last week so went back to finishing off Minky's.


We had spotted an advert for a local facility looking for families to trial a Science Safari Geocache trail. As this is never going to be available to the general public as such we decided to go along and give it a try and give them our feedback. I thought it would be a great chance to spend some time with the older two without the twins.

We had to find caches as per normal but then each box has a science experiment for the children to do inside along with information to read. They learnt about Fibonacci numbers in nature, CO2 in trees, gravity and various other interesting facts. We had a great time, blog post to follow. Bob was in his element using our friend Paul's machine and running on ahead and finding the caches before his sister.

Here hubby and Bob are using string telephones while Fifi and Paul watch on.


We had some of these with us yesterday, I hate the things so I lovingly shared the ones from the tin I The kids mentioned that their mum loved them, so when I spotted these in the supermarket being the nice mum I am I bought them for DD1.


Last year in the Facebook Advent comps I won a voucher for a free service at Halfords. Well yesterday I got round to using it.The staff were friendly, ran me to my work, and did a great job. They even washed the car as well. Knew the win would come in handy.Thanks Halfords.

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Project 366 week 40


A snack for in my break between shifts. Daughter had bought some for Bob and I tried them,  and I have to say they are delicious. They are also shaped like pea pods so rather cute as well.


Bob not going to gymnastics this week as he was exhausted from doing a show at the weekend. So took Lilly a walk anyway and found a few blackberries left worth picking.
Spotted these in the shop and just had to treat myself.


Some nice autumnal colours about this week. Spot Lily running round the tree. She is now wandering away that bit more every time we are out and as long as we keep scanning the horizon for others dogs then she is ok.


I fancy trying my hand at patchwork and had spotted there is a local exhibition on displaying some amazing pieces of work. Also bumped into two women there who gave me some good hints and tips for starting off.


I got a lovely thank you card from the youngest granddaughter thanking me for the blanket I made her. Her writing is very good for somebody of six weeks old!!

a hand written note on the other side


Watching the gruesome twosome while DD1 took Bob to his theatre workshop.  The minute I walk in the door they ask to go to the park, so we went. Sadly the other pics were blurry for some reason. Has been a much drier week this week so we went in shoes instead of wellies.

Dinky on the slide


Have finished my cross stitching. Used a cream backing with gold stripes running through it and made it into a cushion. Looking very nice, hope the recipient likes it.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

A wet and blustery day

Last week the weather was not the best and I had planned for a day out with DD1 and the children, Our initial thoughts had been for a picnic but Thursday was a wet and blustery day. So we headed towards Kilmarnock knowing there was stuff we could do indoors there as well.

We packed up some snacks, part of which was from the Aldi Mamia's award wining 100% organic baby food range. We were sent some fruit and savoury pouches, fruit pots, rice cakes and a bottle of flavoured spring water to take with us on our day out. The pouches have easy ( for parents) twist off lids that can be refitted to save waste.

When we arrived it was dry and sunny if rather windy but we decided to brave the park and let them all run off some steam. We put jackets on the gruesome twosome, and DD1 popped Ziggy into her baby carrier, zipped her jacket up over her and we headed off. The gruesome twosome spotted the ducks in the duck pond but we said we would look at them on the way back to the mini bus. The park has two main sections, the older equipment that has been there since my children were small as well as a newer section that contains items for the children to play on and half a dozen pieces of keep fit equipment aimed at adults, a great idea that the public can use whenever they want.

typical boys - finding puddles to splash in

the gruesome twosome on the swings

Bob on a new piece of equipment

We all tried the keep fit equipment- 

But sadly within ten minutes the rain was bouncing off the grass so we headed back to the mini bus and decided to have something to eat.

the ducks were not caring

raining rather heavily

Firstly we gave Spud one of the pouches and I have to say she did not manage overly well with the it, she ended up wearing more than she ate I think. We might have had more luck had she not wanted to hold it herself. With hindsight a bowl and spoon would have made life less messy.  Thank goodness for the Aldi baby wipes!! But Minky, Dinky and even Bob like the pouches and happily had one each as well. I remember my daughter using them with the twins when they were younger as they do not require a spoon and Fifi use to feed them to the twins on the go if we were driving back from some where with no chance to stop the car.

But she did mange the rice cakes easier. These are a great snack idea, fairly easy to eat even for Spud at seven month and the twins tend to get rice cakes fairly regularly. They polished off most of the rest of the two packets we had between them. These light, tasty and healthy whole grain rice cakes with no added salt or sugar, just flavoured with fruit juice, so make a great healthy snack or as part of a balanced meal, and at only sixty nine pence a pack and are certainly a great on the go food. 

So after we had something to eat we headed to the Dick Institute. Firstly we went up the stairs and into the museum section. Here there are various exhibitions that relate to the history of the town.

With an early fire engine

a clock that measured depth

Stephenson's Rocket
with Stephenson's rocket 

we found some toys

learning counting and colours while Spud practises moving

While the older ones played Spud rolled around the floor. 

Fisher Price camera
lots of Fisher Price memories 
  We then crossed over to the side of the museum dedicated to Natural History. Lots to look at here. The glass display cabinets have information sheets that tell you what the displays in the case actually are. Bob and I were laughing at a rather large seed a Coco de Mer that has the nick name the big bum coconut because it resembles a pair of  buttocks.

Bob enjoyed finding local places on an old map of Ayrshire, he managed to find his street as it had the old church on that is opposite their house.

looking through the round window at various birds and animals 

Brian the lion
looking at Brian the lion, he has been here for over a hundred years

Minky loved Samantha 

Then we went downstairs to the library to read some books.

Dinky and her mum with a book. 

By this point they had all had enough and so we headed home.

This post is an entry for BritMums #MamiaDaysOut Linky Challenge, sponsored by Aldi Mamia

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Project 366 week 39


Making this for friends of mine. A verse to go on the top with names and date on the bottom. The 50 is made from gold coloured beads but I am not happy with the zero so I am going to undo it and line it up better with the 5. It looked ok when I started to sew it so not sure how it ended up off line.


Gymnastics day for Bob and a walk with Lilly. When we got back DD1 wanted to go for a shower so I sat and snuggled Spud while she went. She fell asleep on my shoulder.


a wet day ( again) but made for a nice picture or two.


Needed to go and do some food shopping, so as we live about the same distance from each of the three nearest towns we headed to Irvine for a run on the beach first. Very windy with threatening clouds but it did stay dry.


Trying to help out daughter and go out somewhere with her one day a week so she can go to places she would not consider on her own. It has been a wet week here but decided to attempt the park before we headed into the Dick Institute in Kilmarnock. We got less than 10 mins in the park before the heavens opened too heavy to ignore.
Here they are all looking at some of the animals and birds and other items that are often out on display but currently they have a exhibition on so these items are stored.


Bob was away doing his drama, he is a town crier in the show on Sunday. I took the twins to the park to run off some energy while Fifi made tea for them. It has rained all week and a lot of puddle fun was had. Unluckily for Minky this bit he could not get out of it was sucking his wellies in. I lifted him out and then pulled his wellies out - and yes I did have to take a picture before I rescued him as he was coming to no harm,


DD3 was away on holiday and spotted these, variegated threads and decided to fuel my obsession.