Saturday 31 January 2015

Project 365 week 5 25th - 31st Jan 2015


I was off work using up annual holidays and saw two localish organised geocaching events advertised and so we decided to join in. Doing these events would push me nearly to my 300th cache, and so we decided to pick up a few caches before the event so the event could be my 300th. I like my milestone caches to be a bit special and this way it was.

The first event was a geocache meet and chat event with a chance to see some amazing ideas for unusual caches, good grief no wonder we can struggle at times to find some of them, there were some very very clever ideas. We did a trail of seven caches on the way to this first event, a cache and dash series, hubby drove and I got in and out the car and picked them up, great

Anyway on to the second event, a take on a flash mob, they called this one a flask mob. I assume this was because the meet was to be on the beach, and the flask was to help warm us up. The meet was at a local piece of artwork, a mural of Robert Burns painted on the sea wall. The mural is 25 ft high and 16 ft wide. You can read about it here. Nicely tied in with it being Burns Night.

Gran and Granddad celebrate our 300th cache with us


I went for a walk today, no set route just wander where ever I end up. On my walk I went past Burns Cottage, and this tickled my imagination. Wrapped for his birthday. There had been quite a few events over the weekend so I presume that is why it was wrapped.

a large red ribbon for Burns Cottage


Not a very exciting day, but I did a baking, well I made one cake anyway. A malteser cake. A standard cake mix ( in this house made with canderel) with maltesers stirred through it and more spread along the top. Very yummy it was too.

a malteser cake


Was a cold cold day.Snow showers was pretty much it for the day on and off. Strong driving winds made it so miserable this I never stepped out the door. But I did receive a lovely prize which helped to cheer my day. I won this a wee while ago in a competition run by a fellow blogger, Jaime,  that one or two of you may know but due to circumstances beyond any ones control it has just arrived. The company were amazing, not only did they double up all the candles, sprays and colour your own stocking that were in the original box, they sent me out two full boxes. How lovely of them. The actually box itself is amazing, strong and beautifully decorated.

a lovely prize


Today we went to visit Son No1. The outside lane on the motorway was rather slushy but apart from that the journey was uneventful. We had taken spare jackets, a sleeping bag, a flask of bovril,  bottles of water and some snacks all in reach on the back seat just in case. Luckily none were needed and there was less snow over the east coast than what we had.My new boots got a chance to walk through the snow.

snow on the Ochil hills


Went for a walk while I was in the town anyway, no where nice to walk locally. This is a reflection taken in a back shop window along the river just a feet away from the centre of the town.



This week for DH it has been about trying to get the kitchen back to something like normal. Right now my freezer is still in the kitchen doorway as there is no where else for it to stand whilst hubby sorts the wall and floor behind the cupboard we had to move. The wall was all holes, cracks and filthy, and there was not laminate flooring underneath. He filled in all the holes, cleaned it all in preparation as the rest of the kitchen was decorated only a few weeks back he has papered the bit that will now be seen and painted the rest white.  He also found a few spare pieces of laminate in the loft and filled in the gap meaning the whole floor is on the one level.

the wall behind the cupboard

A varied week this week, what have you been up to?

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Sunday 25 January 2015

One particular kitchen cupboard

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias

I moved into this house nearly two years ago now. The kitchen is not badly off for cupboards, in fact I think it has a few more than the last house we were in. Since we moved DH has added extra shelves in most of the cupboards to utilise the available space to get the most out of it. But there is one particular kitchen cupboard this is just not feasible in, it is a corner cupboard, its triangular in shape, much bigger at the back than it is at the front. I decided at the time I would put my baking ingredients in there, I have so much different stuff between normal flours and an array of gluten free ones, normal sugar and diabetic friendly ones, not to mention cake decorating products some that are  designed for Bob and others than are designed for anybody else.

For a long while know I keep saying I will clear it out, tidy it, organise it and chuck away anything that is out of date or just not been used since we arrived. My biggest stumbling block with this apart from lack of motivation is lack of storage boxes. Yes I do have a cupboard that has a shelf that is over flowing with boxes and lids but the lid eating monster ( he is the sock monster's cousin) has been in there and very few of the boxes have matching lids, I have a whole host that are mismatched yet I have no idea why as I buy them in pairs.

So I decided it was about time I did something about it. One of my favourite shops to purchase this type of item is Poundstretchers based at Heathfield in Ayr. This shop use to be quite small but they took over the empty shop next door and have made it much larger and lighter. They stock a large array of household items from curtains and bedding to clothes and sweets and juice as well as a lot of storage items from large toy boxes to under bed storage as well as kitchen storage. I was in the shop for something else so decided to just buy some storage while I was there.

I chose these sets as they have a selection of different size  as my bags of flour are different sizes. Loved the ideas of the different coloured lids and more to the point what a clever idea in the way they stack with all the lids inside the biggest lid.

So I set about taking everything out of the cupboard, have laid it out for you to see what was in there.

I started by chucking away everything that is out of date or that we are not likely to use and then put the remaining ingredients into tubs. Washed out all the cupboard and threw away stray mini marshmallows and the odd square or two of cooking chocolate.  It also let me discover what had been hidden before, making a full stock check possible for the first time in a long time. I mean how many packs of black icing does one person actually need? In my defence these come in a  multicoloured pack and I needed the yellow for Bobs birthday cake last year. Now funnily enough my friend Betty at work was asking about black icing as she is looking to make a salmon birthday cake in March, I will take it in to her next week.

So I then organised everything I was keeping and put the open products into  the tubs. The cupboard has been arranged so all of Bobs items are to the bottom right, normal baking bottom left. Cake decorations, ready to roll icing and icing pens are up the top.

Now you have to agree that is much much better. Neat, clean, organised with products easy to see. I wish I had done it weeks ago. Thank you  #CollectiveBias for this opportunity to give me the motivation to complete this long over due task.  Do you have a cupboard that needs organising? Then let this be your inspiration to do so. Why not take a before and after picture of yours and leave me a link in the comments so we can all come and have a look?

Saturday 24 January 2015

Project 365 week 4 18th - 24th Jan


The snow we had had on Friday and Saturday had started to thaw a little, just enough to freeze over night and make the pavements and roads an ice rink. We live at the top of a hill so was not much fun making my way to the roads that they have gritted a few miles away.  So I went to get some salt as DH had used the last or ours making a safe pathway to feed the chickens. Every body else locally had obviously had the same idea cos it took me three shops to find this - the last tub of salt in shop three.

other brands are normally available 


Went for a walk along the beach front ( yes yet again) as I just love walking along a beach, peaceful and therapeutic. Was very pretty not a breath of wind to cause a ripple on the water and there was snow on the out lying hills. 

But I spotted this when I took a slight diversion off the beach, can not say I have ever noticed it before. The picture in the middle is of the SS Waverley, the last sea going paddle steamer in the world and it sails from the dock here in Ayr. I keep saying I will take a trip on it but have never got round to it. 

its very pretty in full size


My baking cupboard is a disaster, everything muddled up and stuff in all the wrong places. Its a silly shape of a cupboard, its a corner cupboard that is much wider at the back than the front and hidey holes round both edges. So I went and bought some tubs to tidy it up. Yes I do have other tubs but you try finding a box and lid that go together. 

liked the way the lids stack inside each other. 


Today dawned dry bright and wind free, this was good news as we were getting our living room window and both our doors changed over. Luckily it stayed that way but the temperature never rose above freezing all day, so to say the least it was freezing. Have to say the window and doors look very nice, sadly due to what I can only assume was an error on the part of the surveyor we had to end up with the  large fitted cupboard at the side of the back door being taken out to get the new door in as it was a different size than the original. It had to be emptied, unscrewed from the wall and moved. At the moment it is temporarily back but in the wrong place.  This should have been avoided had the surveyor listened to our concerns over this cupboard in the first place and acted accordingly.  

The living room window was replaced but due to the thickness of the wood they used the internal gap was made marginally smaller than it had been previously, and now our vertical blind does not fit. At the moment my lovely new window is pinked out with windolene to save us feeling like fish in a large goldfish bowl as people walk by. They have not heard the end of this but decided it best to calm down before I ranted at them.  

out with the old. 


Normally DD No1 use to come round with the gruesome twosome on a Wednesday evening but now they have a bedtime routine this is not practical. So she brought them round to play for a while this afternoon. Bob was not here till much later as he was away to the other grandparents for the day and likes to stay for his tea. Fifi came up after school, Love how both the twins dote on the older siblings.

aaahhhhh cuddles for Minky


Today was the first rain we have had since the snow. But I did not let this put me off and went for a walk regardless. That is why I have waterproof jacket and trousers  Not a lot of pretty scenery along this section of the cycle path, but Greenan Castle was visible with a dull sky behind it.Walked 3.36 miles and actually enjoyed it despite the rain.


DH had a diabetic check appointment at the surgery the other day so we popped into the town to do a few things while we were there. Love a nosey round a charity shop and spotted these when I was in. Just my size, look unworn but have great big thick treads and a lovely thick padded lining. Just got to wait on some snow now to try them out.

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Friday 23 January 2015

Rabbie Burns, Tartan and other things Scottish.

I have lived in  Scotland for nearly forty two years now, having come here after we left Berlin. My recollections of that time still make me laugh. One of the teachers we had was Scottish and I remember him telling us about Haggis. Haggis, according to legend, are long haired sausage shaped creatures that run around the hills of Scotland and they have two legs longer than the other two to make managing the hills easier.

Scotland is a beautiful country, and I have lived in various parts of it, from Dunkeld to Machrihanish, Grangemouth to Ayr, and have to say the beauty here on the west coast is simply stunning. But in all fairness in comparison to looking out on the BP chemical plant for ten years anything would be better.

storm on ayr beach
icons of Scotland

Think of Scotland and you think of the Loch Ness monster, square sausage, Irn Bru ( made in Scotland from girders), not to mention Red Kola,  midges, shortbread, bagpipes, kilts,  clootie dumpling and thistles, The country is steeped in history with many amazing buildings to see Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle, Culzean Castle to name but a few.

If you think of Ayrshire the first thing that would probably spring to mind would be Rabbie Burns. He has a massive following not just here but all over the world with Burns Suppers being held far and wide. How many of you have sung along to words of his at new year?

Should auld acquaintance be forgot 
and never brought to mind? 
Should auld acquaintance be forgot 
and days of auld lang syne? 
For auld lang syne, my dear, 
for auld lang syne, 
we'll take a cup of kindness yet, 
for auld lang syne.” 
― Robert Burns

"Tae a Moose" in all its glory

With Burns night in mind I have been asked to do a review of a rather stunning tartan bib.Well we got two actually one each for Minky and Dinky.  The bibs made by Skibz bibs are are part of their Made in England Limited Edition range.  Its a lovely Tartan bib that is reversible, mine has white hearts on a red background, the ones for sale have white dots instead to make it more uni sex.

both sides of our bibs

So what are Skibz bibs? 
Our bandana-style dribble bibs are so soft and comfortable. The adjustable press stud fastening ensures a snug fit around your child's neck and the unique, double-layer backing is highly absorbent, so moisture is drawn away from your baby's delicate skin.
No more soreness and chafing.
Dribblers really give their Skibz a workout, day after day. We've made sure Skibz pass the most rigorous testing to meet the highest British and European standards possible for safety and quality. So it'll come as no surprise that our bibs can be washed at 60°C. Time after time.
Skibz are the most functional product you'll ever buy for your little dribbler - and we also insist that they look great too. Skibz work like a bib but look like a scarf, so whatever outfit your little one is wearing, Skibz adds the finishing touch that pulls it all together.
A wide range of designs is always available, from cuddly cow print and traditional ginghams right through to funky florals and polka dots.

the twins in tartan

We found the the bibs are really comfortable to the touch, soft and absorbent. I personally feel these bandana style bibs are much dressier than the bibs that were available when my children were young. They look fabulous when they are on. The seams are invisible, the quality is outstanding  and they compliment any outfit. Fabulous for around the house and more than suitable for a dressier occasion as well. I am sure the twins would not be out of place at their aunts wedding later this year in them.

poppers and the stitched on logo of authenticity 

All the bibs have the logo stitched on so you now you are buying quality. The poppers are well attached, and I like these as they are adjustable to grow with your child, either doing up both on a smaller child like the twins or just the one on an older child.

tartan bandana bib
we tested them out with food as well. 

Disclaimer - we were sent two bibs to try out but this did not influence my findings.

Saturday 17 January 2015

Project 365 week 3 11th - 17th Jan 2015


Baking is something we have always enjoyed. I always cooked and baked with my children and thoroughly enjoyed doing so, and my daughter has enjoyed doing the same with her children. It has all paid off, Fifi loves being in the kitchen and spent the afternoon in the kitchen. Lemon drizzle sponge and meringues from scratch, as well as cinnamon whirls and apple strudels from a tin. Very delicious it was as well.


Another little win that arrived just before Christmas. Filled the freezer up with some of it this week, rest will spend another time.


Found these in amongst the music CD's. Were state of the art twenty years ago. The space one requires 4mb space to load,some of the pictures I take are nearly the size of the whole program. Long before wiki existed, or broadband.  We had a huge collection of them at one time, think they all went to daughter for granddaughter a number of years ago. They don't run any more on the computer. Worries me somewhat that I am leaving behind my blog as memories, will it still be in a format that can be read in twenty years time?  DH's new laptop did not even come with a dvd drawer.

I remember part of the Daily Mail disc being old adverts. One of the adverts was for a new service - you can now get to India in three weeks, three weeks, wow how that has changed as well. Did you know Gibbs SR was the first ever product to be featured in a tv advert? Clean - really clean.


The weather was cold and blowy but dry despite the snow that was forecast, so I went to see if any of the children wanted a walk. Bob declined the other two did not protest and fell asleep in the buggy. Took them up the back road, two miles out and two miles back, was lovely. This was the view from where we turned round to come back.


The leak in the living room window has got very bad lately, not to mention the locks on the two doors. So today the man was out to measure up for new ones. Lets hope for drier less breezy weather next Wednesday.


We have had our first snows of the winter, not a lot but snow. So we let the girls out to see what they thought, well they were not bothered and just set about finding the grass underneath. 


Did some baking last night, had no lemons to make lemon drizzle so made lime marmalade cake instead. A layer of Victoria sponge, spread across some marmalade, top with more sponge and baked. Started the week with baking and finished with baking - sorry

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Wednesday 14 January 2015

My favourite 365 pics from 2014.

Well I am very proud of myself for sticking at the project not just one year but three. It is an amazing thing to look back on, to see the highs and lows of life, and to remember what I was doing.

So I was asked to choose my favourite picture from each month, not easy when you have to whittle 365 down to 12. But here we go.


The twins at  two months old - my goodness have they have grown and developed. Here they are with a new toy each chosen for them by Bob.

two happy smiley faces. 


I spotted this rainbow and the darker sky above it and below it, and had to stop the car and take this picture through the windscreen.

didn't find the pot of gold 


The very definition of my blog, taking out the grandchildren and having fun with them. This was Bob hanging around in a localish park.

Beach Park Irvine


This was Bob's birthday cake. He asked for a minion cake and I have to say I excelled myself and it turned out much better than I expected. 

Bob and his cake


We took up geocaching at the start of 2014. On the 28th to mark the anniversary of the passing of Short Dog we placed our first cache. 

our first cache


Took the twins to the park while daughter run son in law to work. This was the first time Dinky had been in a swing, she was not overly keen and was only on for two minutes.

on the swings


For those that followed my blog last year you will know the story that was told with this picture. If you don't and your interested you can read the sorry saga here Sadly this was the last time I saw him, just wish I knew why.

Son No2 Daughter No1 and the twins 


Four new additions to the family this week. Meet Beryl, Wilma, Penny and Gertrude, the grandchildren named them not us.

the girls


This is daughter No2 who comes down to visit, this time it so happened to be on her birthday. Birthdays cannot go by without a cake to celebrate, its just what we do. So as she likes chocolate and gooey thats what she got. The centre had been hollowed and filled with a box of roses. 

daughter No2


Not a lot of blogger events come to Scotland, but I had an e-mail saying there was a Currys bake off coming to the cook school in Glasgow, so how could I not go?  

Lis aka  with her cakes


This month is harder to pick, have six birthdays this month so more than one child with a cake, and a cake made by granddaughter for me, so this is the one I decided to share.

my cake made by Fifi


Hosting the unwrapping of presents on what we call Christmas No2. Again this is what my blog is all about, the love for my children and grandchildren.

Minky and the older two

Saturday 10 January 2015

Project 365 week 2 4th - 10th Jan

Well I managed it this week, took the photo's every day as usual but this time added them to the post and wrote the spiel day by day.


I had won a Fat Face gift card last month, but waited for the sale before I spent it, I know it was a prize but I still like value for money. I split it spending some on a jumper for my husband and a hooded fleecy zipped jacket that I liked for myself.


The chickens are laying lots of eggs and so I decided to chop a pile of veggies and make an omelette for tea. Very nice it was too.


Decided to go for a walk along the beach, cold and rather windy but dry all the same and was rather a pleasant walked wrapped up against the elements.
This is as it came off the camera, no filters or colour alterations at all.


Went to visit son No1 today. The weather was worse than awful. It put me out of my comfort zone not only cos I hate driving in the dark, I also hate driving in the rain, and I detest driving through Glasgow in rush hour, but to drive through Glasgow in the dark in near zero visibility due to the heaviness of the rain for me is a huge stress, but needs must. There was no reprieve and no getting out the car for a nice walk. We bought lunch locally and ate it in the car before we popped in to see him.


Had the children over tonight. Don't really think Fifi wanted to be here but don't think she was given much choice. A year or two back she would have jumped at the chance to make a pot of soup or some cakes but no last night she sat up the stairs playing games on her phone. That is fine I just left her. So Bob and I had an evening of playing board games, some of which we have had for a few years but now he plays them properly - no more making our own rules to suit his age.


Went for a walk and passed by a friends house.  Nice to see my wee tree is no now longer overly wee. Approximately fifteen years ago, may be longer we were out for a walk with Short Dog and she was digging in the undergrowth and out came this tiny sapling, probably no more than two or three inches tall. So I decided its fate and took it home and we planted it in a pot, we potted it  on a few times but never really had anywhere we felt we wanted to plant it. A few years back it was looking rather sorry for itself and so we decided to plant it out in a field that belongs to a friend and see if it would recover. It has come and well and is now just over five feet tall. Makes me quite proud to see it growing tall knowing the hand I had in its life.


Have had a lucky start to the year as far as competitions are concerned. I got an e-mail on Monday night to say I had won a tablet on a fellow bloggers blog. Could not believe it when it turned up Thursday lunch time, I ordered a case for it the same afternoon and it turned up Friday morning. Looking forward to using this one. Thank you to both Tinned Tomatoes for hosting the comp and Ideal World tv for supplying the prize.