The Things I Will Never Know

Life is full of questions, it’s how we learn, by asking them. Sometimes there are questions that we never ask, even though we want to. Sometimes we want to ask but we don’t really want to know the answers.

Questions can sometimes be painful, because there are no answers. They will always be there, unanswered no matter how much you try to make peace with that fact it will still hurt.

On Mother’s Day I allow myself to ask these questions. I allow myself to feel the pain and weight that these questions bare. Then I take a deep breath and continue on.

Here are the things I will never know.

When did you first feel me move in your belly ? how much did I weigh when I was born ? Was I good baby ? 

When was my first smile, tooth, step ?

Did you love me then, ever, at the end ?

Why did you really leave ? what made you so unhappy ? did you miss me ? 

Did you ever tell me the truth ? 

Are the few memories I have of you from childhood real ? Were there any good memories ?

Did you know that the last time you saw me it would be the last ?

Could you understand why I couldn’t watch you die ? 

Did you hate me right at the end ? Is that why nobody has ever been in touch to tell me ?

Did you find peace ? I hope you did.

 

 

 

How To Spring Clean Your Finances And Save Yourself Money

Regular readers will know that I’m a huge fan of Spring cleaning. Whether it’s my home, my routine or my finances they all get a good sorting out this time of year. I can’t stress how important it is to check your finances. Not only will it help you spot any mistakes that have been made it can also save you lots of money.

It is too easy to ignore or miss those small regular outgoing payments but they soon add up and could be costing you a lot. I thought I would share my best tips to Spring clean your finances and hopefully save you some money in the process.

The Fine Toothcomb

Set a few hours aside and go through your bank statements for at least the last 6 months. If you have paper statements take a highlighter and cross through anything you don’t recognise. If like me you do all your banking online just keep a notebook next to you and jot down anything unusual.

Once you have done that it’s time to investigate. Ask yourself if you are still signed up to a subscription that you meant to cancel. Also check for duplicate payments, I’ve had this happen before where a supermarket took the same amount twice by accident.

If you find any of these problems action them straight away, leaving it any longer could mean you forget again. It might be a good idea to set a reminder on your calendar so you never forgot those cancellation or renewal dates.

Are You Owed ?

There’s nothing worse than the thought of money that’s rightfully yours sitting in someone else’s account accruing interest.

If you have switched energy supplier in the last six years you could have credit sitting in your old account. A quick phone call to your old supplier will soon tell you if you are owed anything.

Could you be owed PPI ? If you have ever had a loan, car finance, credit card or any other credit product you might be owed money. PPI (payment protection insurance) was widely mis-sold leaving people paying, sometimes unknown for worthless cover. It’s definitely worth checking before the deadline which has been set at August 29th 2019.

Paying Too Much ?

My favourite part of the financial Spring clean is seeing if I can get a better deal for the services and products I already have. If you have any contracts that are coming to an end, phone up and haggle. I haven’t paid full price for subscription TV in years.

Don’t auto-renew anything, always search the market for a better deal. Whether it’s car insurance or mobile phone tariffs, never settle until you’ve left no stone unturned.

Also if you have a credit card check if you are eligible for a 0% balance transfer. We were able to pay our debt down more quickly without the interest to pay on top.

And Finally 

Once you’ve spring cleaned your finances and saved yourself lots of money it’s time to sit back with a brew and congratulate yourself on a job well done. I like to do a financial housekeeping session once a month. But a good clean out twice a year will be just as effective.

*This is a collaborative post*

 

The Dolmio #ThankGoodness Challenge

I don’t know about you but I dread meal planning. I have a house full of fussy eaters who are very difficult to please. By the middle of the week I’m low on ideas and motivation. When Britmums and Dolmio challenged me to create a #ThankGoodness mid-week meal I didn’t hesitate to accept.

I was sent a lovely hamper of goodies to help me create a simple good-for-you meal including a jar of Dolmio Bolognese sauce. Dolmio Bolognese original sauce is 100% natural. One jar provides a family of four with one of their 5-a-day each without even adding any vegetables. Each jar contains at least 10 juicy diced tomatoes, tomato puree, half an onion, sunflower oil, garlic cloves, herbs, cornflour, 2 teaspoons of added beet sugar for taste, a squeeze of lemon juice, a pinch of salt and pepper and a splash of water and nothing else.

I decided to make a classic spaghetti Bolognese with a little twist of sneaky vegetables included. I cubed 2 courgettes, sliced a handful of mushrooms, chopped an onion and diced a pepper. I knew that the veggies would reduce in size whilst cooking making them a sneaky addition to the dish. I also finely chopped some garlic cloves and added those too.

I fried all the vegetables together with a tablespoon of olive oil over a medium heat. Once softened I added 500g of steak mince and browned until cooked. I then added a 500g jar of Dolmio Bolognese sauce and simmered until heated through.

I had a little helper whilst I cooked, he seemed to take a shine to the garlic bulbs.

I boiled some wholewheat spaghetti for myself and Chris and made the children their preferred cheesy pasta as a side.

We all tucked in and it was delicious. The meal got the thumbs up from both the children and the only sneaky veg they noticed was the mushrooms which I count as a massive win.

As the hamper had been so generous I decided to make another delicious meal using the other jar of Dolmio Bolognese sauce. I wanted to go with another pasta dish as my children really enjoy them. I settled on a simple chicken, cheese and tomato pasta bake. I have never made this with a jar sauce before so I was a little worried as to how it would turn out.

This time I used mushrooms, courgettes, onion and garlic. After softening them in a tablespoon of olive oil I added two cubed chicken breasts and cooked through. I then added the jar of Bolognese sauce. Once the meat and sauce were thoroughly cooked I added some cooked pasta and stirred together. I emptied the contents in to a baking dish and covered generously with a mixture of cheddar cheese and grated parmasan. Once baked in the oven for 20 minutes it came out looking and smelling delicious.

It was one of the nicest pasta bakes I have ever made, even the children wanted seconds. Sadly the mushrooms didn’t go unnoticed but I will keep trying. We have eaten so well thanks to the Britmums and Dolmio #ThankGoodness challenge. It’s certainly shown me that mid-week meals can be anything but boring.

Both meals were thoroughly enjoyed by the whole family even the fussy ones and will now become a regular feature on our meal plan.

If you want to see lots more delicious recipes and mid week motivation head over to the Dolmio website.

This post is an entry for the #Dolmio #ThankGoodness Challenge, sponsored by Dolmio. www.dolmio.co.uk/thankgoodness.

*We were sent the ingredients shown above free of charge for the purpose of this challenge. All thoughts and opinions are my own*

 

 

#TuesdayTreasures 21/03/2017

Ahoy Matey! Welcome Aboard #TuesdayTreasures

Welcome to this weeks #TuesdayTreasures blog linky with myself and the lovely Rachel from RachelSwirl.

#TuesdayTreasures is for bloggers from all walks of life, whether you are a parenting, lifestyle or any other type of blogger you are welcome to join in and to share your posts new and old.


The Blog With The Booty

Each week one post which has been added to the #TuesdayTreasures linky is selected by both Rachel and myself to share with you all resulting in two winning (a winner is chosen by each of us).

This week I really enjoyed reading ‘Adventures R Us’ written by Annette at Four Acorns. Her post is about getting outdoors at the weekend as a family, something I’m definitely aspiring to do more of this year. I loved the ideas and beautiful photo’s she has taken, they have given me just the motivation I needed.

Annette is a French lady married to an Irish man, they live in Ireland with their four beautiful children. A trained journalist, Annette hopes to inspire other families to get out and explore the world that surrounds them through her blog posts and photography.

You can read lots more of Annette’s wonderful blog posts here.

Adventures In Websterland

 

I would like to thank Annette and award her with the #TuesdayTreasures Trophy. Here is the code (see above) for your #TuesdayTreasures Trophy. I look forward to seeing your badge proudly on display somewhere on your wonderful blog.


Avast Ye! (The Basics For Linking Up)

The #TuesdayTreasures linky will be live from 5 am every Tuesday and will close at the end of the day on a Thursday. As with all linkys there are some rules and the full version of these can be found here.

Basically, you can link up to a maximum of two posts, new or old. Please comment on the hosts posts (that would be RachelSwirl and myself) and at least two other linked posts. If you can please finish your comments with #TuesdayTreasures that would be particularly helpful as it puts bloggers in the know as to how you found their posts.

If you are on Twitter then let us know, You can find us at @FrugalMrsW and @RachelSwirl, again try not to forget to include the hashtag #TuesdayTreasures. We will share your posts and in turn share the love!

Every week we will each pick a favourite #TuesdayTreasures post and will mention it at the beginning of our linky posts the following Tuesday, so don’t forget to pop back each week to check on both our blogs.

Here is the badge and code for you to use in your post/ posts which you select to link up.

Adventures In Websterland
Drink Up Me’Hearties Yo Ho!

Now it’s time to get linking, We look forward to reading all your linked posts shortly!

 Loading InLinkz ...

Lee Stafford uBunTu Oils Straight & Juicy Irons Review & Giveaway

I’ve been blessed (or cursed) with a head full of wavy hair since birth. I use straighteners every single day, without them it’s not a pretty sight I assure you. Think of a cross between Worzel Gummidge and Diana Ross and you are half way there. My old straighteners have seen better days so when I was asked if I wanted to review the new Lee Stafford uBunTu Oils Straight & Juicy Irons of course I said yes.

The uBunTu Oils Straight and Juicy Irons come in a gorgeous hot pink and lime green colour. They are professional quality and the plates are infused with uBunTu oilf from Africa. The oils help to leave your hair feeling pampered, restored and full of juicy goodness.

The straighteners also have lots of other great features like:

Fast 60 second heat up time.

A 60 minute auto shut off for safety.

Variable temperature with LED indicator.

They straighten and curl.

360 degree swivel cord.

Lockable switch to protect the plates.

What Did I Think

I have used some of the Lee Stafford hair products before, but I didn’t know their was an electrical beauty range available too.

After washing and drying my hair I set to work with the straighteners, sectioning my hair as usual.

Firstly, I love how smooth these straighteners are to use. They are really comfortable and lightweight to hold. I also found that the oils on the plates helped them to glide through my thick hair easily, I have had some snagging in the past with other models.

There was also none of the usual static I have experienced with other straighteners in the past which was a huge bonus.

I really liked that I could adjust the temperature myself. I need a higher temperature for the thicker parts of my hair and a lower temperature for the delicate parts like my fringe. I think one of the biggest advantages these straighteners have over similar competitors is the ability to control the temperature with the LED display.

I was really happy with the results, my hair felt lovely and smooth. It also looked glossy and really healthy. I would definitely recommend these straighteners if you are in the market for a new pair. I also think they would make a lovely Birthday or Christmas present.

As you know I do love a bargain and that’s certainly what these are. Don’t worry though, the quality hasn’t been compromised at all. They are available from Amazon for £29.99 which I think is a fantastic price.

The Review Directory have kindly offered a set of the Lee Stafford Straight & Juicy Irons for one of my lovely readers to win for themselves. You can enter using the Gleam app below.

Terms & Conditions

  • Open to UK entries only.
  • The Closing date is 12.04.2017.
  • The prize is a pair of Lee Stafford uBunTu Oils Straight & Juicy Irons.
  • The winner will be selected at random from all valid entries and contacted directly by the promoter.
  • The prize will be sent directly to the winner from the promoter.

Win Lee Stafford Ubuntu Oils Straighteners #3

Good Luck x

Living Arrows 12/52

“You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth” Kahlil Gibran.

Every Monday for the rest of this year I will share with you two photo’s of my children that celebrate their childhood.

Last week was a tough one all round. The children are poorly yet again, Daisy has an ear infection and Jake has a nasty snotty cold. I really am fed up of all these illnesses plaugeing us, it’s so hard to stay positive sometimes. Stress levels have been through the roof and everyone has been grumpy.

I know there will always be days and weeks like this, it’s part and parcel of life. I suppose all we can do is just keep rolling with it.

Jake

Jake has just started asking me for specific food at mealtimes. He’s been happily reeling off a list of things he likes and things he doesn’t. Although he’s full of a cold he’s had one hell of an appetite this week. He’s not usually a great eater but he’s wolfed his food down this week even asking for seconds. I’m fully expecting a sudden growth spurt in the next few weeks.

Boiled egg and soldiers are a firm favourite in our house.

Daisy

We spent all day in our pyjamas on Sunday, after the stressful week we’ve had it was called for. Daisy wanted to make some cupcakes for her packed lunch on Monday. We had a box of those quick and easy, add an egg types in the cupboard thankfully. She’s still taking antibiotics for an ear infection but I’m hoping we’ve seen the back of being poorly for a while.

Living Arrows

 

Almost Spring

I used to think that Winter was my favourite season but the last few years have seen me slowly change my mind. Of course I love Christmas and the seasonal loveliness it brings. The past few Winters have been nothing but grey and dismal. Instead of snow we’ve had rain and constantly fluctuating temperatures. This has made me yearn for Spring more than ever.

This year I have noticed what a negative effect Winter has had on my physical and mental health. I’ve never been diagnosed with anything like seasonal affective disorder but I definitely do suffer some form of blues quite badly around this time. In the past I’ve suffered from a Vitamin D deficiency but I know take supplements which do help somewhat.

Last weekend I felt the need more than ever to get out and search for the first signs of Spring. Here in the UK Spring officially starts on March 20th but I knew if I searched hard enough I could find what I was looking for. I was also desperate to feel the sun on my skin and get some fresh air in my lungs.

With no sign of rain we set off to visit one of our favourite places. Acorn Farm is a small community run farm near Knowsley. I’ve blogged about our visits a couple of times. The children love the animals and the parks, but for me it’s more about the sensory garden and the little woodland walk.

There’s a herb garden where the plants are already flourishing. We spent some time smelling the leaves and branches and guessing which herbs they were. The sensory garden was alive with signs of Spring. From the tall yellow daffodils to the stunning purple crocuses, it couldn’t help but to lift my spirits.

I don’t know whether it’s a part of getting older but I certainly don’t remember taking this much notice of flowers and plants in my younger days. I also notice and appreciate the signs of seasonal changes so much more now too.

It was so lovely to do something as a family. Our weekends can often be busy and time together can sometimes become neglected.

Those few hours outside, surrounded by nature with the sun on my face made me feel happier than I have in a little while. So I welcome Spring with open arms, ready for growth and renewal.

 

 

#TuesdayTreasures 14/03/2017

Ahoy Matey! Welcome Aboard #TuesdayTreasures

Welcome to this weeks #TuesdayTreasures blog linky with myself and the lovely Rachel from RachelSwirl.

#TuesdayTreasures is for bloggers from all walks of life, whether you are a parenting, lifestyle or any other type of blogger you are welcome to join in and to share your posts new and old.


The Blog With The Booty

Each week one post which has been added to the #TuesdayTreasures linky is selected by both Rachel and myself to share with you all resulting in two winning (a winner is chosen by each of us).

This week I’ve chosen ‘Preparing Your Home For A Newborn‘ written by Chilling With Lucas. In the post, Jenni gives some great advice about what you need to prepare for your new arrival. New parents waste so much money buying things that they will never use. I’m all about saving money and wish I had read something like this when I was pregnant.

Jenni lives in Lancashire with her partner and their adorable son Lucas. As well as writing her blog ‘Chilling With Lucas’ she works part time as a support worker, freelance writer and social media manager. On the blog she shares milestones, family days out and lots more.

You can read lots more of Jenni’s lovely posts here.

Adventures In Websterland

 

I would like to thank Jenni and award her with the #TuesdayTreasures Trophy. Here is the code (see above) for your #TuesdayTreasures Trophy. I look forward to seeing your badge proudly on display somewhere on your lovely blog.


Avast Ye! (The Basics For Linking Up)

The #TuesdayTreasures linky will be live from 5 am every Tuesday and will close at the end of the day on a Thursday. As with all linkys there are some rules and the full version of these can be found here.

Basically, you can link up to a maximum of two posts, new or old. Please comment on the hosts posts (that would be RachelSwirl and myself) and at least two other linked posts. If you can please finish your comments with #TuesdayTreasures that would be particularly helpful as it puts bloggers in the know as to how you found their posts.

If you are on Twitter then let us know, You can find us at @FrugalMrsW and @RachelSwirl, again try not to forget to include the hashtag #TuesdayTreasures. We will share your posts and in turn share the love!

Every week we will each pick a favourite #TuesdayTreasures post and will mention it at the beginning of our linky posts the following Tuesday, so don’t forget to pop back each week to check on both our blogs.

Here is the badge and code for you to use in your post/ posts which you select to link up.

Adventures In Websterland
Drink Up Me’Hearties Yo Ho!

Now it’s time to get linking, We look forward to reading all your linked posts shortly!

 Loading InLinkz ...

Living Arrows 11/52

“You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth” Kahlil Gibran.

Every Monday for the rest of this year I will share with you two photo’s of my children that celebrate their childhood.

One goal that I make every year but inevitably fail at is to try to get outside more. I don’t mean just in the garden but to actually go somewhere on the weekend. Sometimes I find myself having to squash in the remainder of undone chores from the week in to the weekend. This leaves little time to visit anywhere other than the local park.

I was determined to get out together as a family this weekend. I planned in advance so no matter what the weather there were no excuses. We went to a local farm, it’s community run and the entry fee is more than reasonable. It’s the perfect place to take photo’s and make memories. That’s what life is all about after all.

Daisy

Daisy drinks in everything around her. She always wants to know why, or how or when. I feel privileged to watch her learn and grow. I might not have all the answers for her but I will certainly try my best.

Jake is a hands on little boy. He loves to touch and explore so the sensory garden at the farm was his paradise. So much will change for him in the next few months. He will turn 3 and start going to nursery and those last little pieces of babyhood will be left behind.

Nappies are slowly being replaced with big boy undies. The booster seat at the dinner table is about to be retired and the stair gates are redundant. Jake is my last baby so these little but important changes are almost bittersweet.

 

Living Arrows

Vintage Magazines, Schedules & Strong Women #LittleLoves

In last weeks little loves post I touched on the subject of trying to gain a better work/life balance. This week I have been following a new schedule and switching off when I need to and it’s working wonders. I do wonder if I’m cut out for this working from home lark. I have workaholic tendencies and burn out really quickly.

I’m happy to say that the rain has stayed off for the majority of the school runs this week and the sun has made an appearance. I’m hoping to get out in the garden at some point this weekend to start the inevitable post Winter clean up. I can already see the signs of life again from some of the plants and shrubs.

Here are some of my #littleloves from the week.

Read

On Saturday I visited an antiques and collectable centre. Amongst the usual vintage treasures were magazines and postcards from bygone days. I spent some time looking through the magazines at the articles and advertisements and had a good giggle at the advice columns and the pin-up models of the 1950’s. I also spent a while reading the postcards that were lovingly sent to family and friends at addresses that probably no longer exist.

Watched

Years ago when I first discovered blogs Louise Pentland’s ‘Sprinkle of Glitter’ was a favourite of mine. I loved her style of writing. As the years went by and her fame on YouTube grew I found it hard to relate to a lot of her content as it seemed targeted at a teen audience which was such a shame. I’ve just rediscovered her again in the last twelve months and I have to say I’m so glad I did. She seems to have gone through a huge personal change and I’m loving the raw, real and uncensored videos she’s creating now.

She made this video on International Women’s Day this week and what she had to say really resonated with me. I’m one of life’s apologiser’s and I certainly never shout about my achievements.

                           

Heard

My children say so many funny things throughout the week I usually write them down so I don’t forget. A few gems from daisy this week have been ” Mummy, when will all the tree’s die ?” , “Do you know about the word spontaneous, because my teacher does” and to Jake “don’t do that ! you are not Spiderman”. Listening to them certainly is a tonic if you are having a stressful week.

Made

As I mentioned above, I’ve made a new working week schedule. I’ve cut my working days down to 3 days a week from 7 which is a huge achievement for me. I spent some time with one of my lovely friends on Monday, we share the same hobby of entering competitions. We talked about how to schedule and organise our time so we don’t miss out on those all important closing dates. I came away with lots of ideas and have already made myself a new plan of action.

Worn

Nothing fancy, but if it counts I’ve worn my coat open this week instead of zipped up. It’s definitely starting to feel like it’s time to swap my Winter coat for a lighter jacket.

And lastly

This week I’ve loved closing my laptop by 8pm, putting a film on and lying down on the couch to relax. I might not be as productive and I might miss some opportunities but I truly don’t care. I had actually forgotten what it was like to give my full attention to one task at a time. Even my phone has stayed in the kitchen to avoid any distractions.

I’ve watched Bad Moms and Fifty Shades of Grey, both hilarious in their own ways !

Little Loves Coffee Work Sleep Repeat