Thursday 31 August 2017

Back to school

So we are five days away from going back to school and boy is this mummy ready! 
In some ways it feels like I've blinked and summer has flown by, but in other ways it feels like it's been such a long six weeks!

As James is going into Year One, this is our third time doing back to school (his nursery was in his schools foundation unit!).

So what have we learned?
The thing that I would always suggest is pre book your school shoes appointments! When James started nursery we actually went out and bought his shoes the week the kids went back so town would be quiet! But last year he started at the same time as everyone else so we pre booked his shoe fitting and we did the same again this year! It meant even though our local Clarks shop was really busy, we could go in for a certain time and got seen straight away with no waiting. As we left after purchasing James shoes I heard the girl on the door tell someone the fitting wait was approximately 90 minutes.

Always buy your uniform with plenty of time! We have an order turn around of around two weeks for the branded jumpers and polo tops and those have been picked up, named and are hanging up in the wardrobe. We have three branded jumpers and three branded polo tops, but we also have one unbranded jumper and four unbranded polo tops. These were all actually bought before the end of last term when Aldi had their school uniform in and Tesco had theirs come into stock. 

Always have a decent school bag, with a drink bottle pocket! James has a Zip and Zoe Multi Dinos backpack which he loves! We were going to order him the school backpack, but since his is so bright and no one else has one, we decided to stick with it. It has one large main pocket, a small pocket on the front and a bottle pocket. It also has a chest clip to keep the bag on! The small front pocket is ideal for storing gloves in the winter and suntan lotion in the summer!

Always layout uniform and pack bags the night before! This is where I struggle especially as I have to get Freddie dressed as well to do the school run and at 21 months old, getting dressed is not his favourite thing to do! There have been days when Freddie has hidden James shoes so he's had to go in wearing his trainers, luckily the school were OK about it as it was just one day! The last thing I will be doing on a night is filling up the water bottle and putting in the fridge ready for the next day!

One thing we are looking forward to trying out this year is the new website
This fab new website/app will help parents trade school pick ups/drop offs, taking kids to birthday parties and even babysitting! I know there's been a few times over the last 21 months that when Freddie has been ill and I've had to drag him out to take James to school or to pick him up. Or I have been ill and I've had to drag myself up to get James. Using would allow me to log on and contact parents of James friends to help me out, especially as contacting people on Facebook does not always work or the messages do not get through in time. The school uses a text message scheme to contact parents but again these messages do not always get through when they are meant to.

So these are my top tips for going back to school! Hopefully I will pick up my own tips from other parents over the next year!

Saturday 26 August 2017

James you are FIVE!

James today you turn five years old! How has that happened! I really feel like I have blinked and you have grown from that tiny baby into this tall handsome cheeky young man. You are still very much a daddy's boy, but if daddy is not at home you love mummy cuddles, especially at bed time. You have been known to sneak out of your bed once daddy has settled you and into mummy and daddy's bed for mummy snuggles.

You are always asking lots of questions and are very inquisitive. You love playing with water and sand! You do struggle a bit with writing, so mummy and daddy have been helping you over the holidays. I think the structure of year one will help you though.

You go back to school in ten days time and into year one already! It really feels like only yesterday you were starting the school nursery!

You are the best big brother to Freddie, he absolutely worships the ground you walk on! He hates leaving you at school, but when he sees you on a night he has the biggest smile on his face!

You absolutely love school and you have a brilliant group of friends. I have loved being able to stand outside the shops and watch you play in the foundation unit playground this year! Some of your games look so fun! Next year though you will spend your break times in the big school yard so the only time mummy and Freddie will see you will be on a Thursday when we are at our sure start group as we can see into the main yard from the sure start garden!

You are definitely still very stubborn and boy if you don't get your own way do you let us know you are not happy!  

You adore watching Cbeebies and your favourite TV programmes are: Go Jetters, Octonauts and Peter Rabbit. You had an absolutely brilliant time when we visited Cbeebies land at Alton Towers back in April and you keep asking when we are going to go again! Hopefully we will go again next year. You also love watching milkshake on channel 5. Your favourite programmes on there are Digby Dragon and Rusty Rivets. 

So all thats left to say is I hope you have a brilliant day my gorgeous boy and enjoy your party which you are having next weekend, just before you go back to school.

All my love

Friday 25 August 2017

Freddie at 21 months

Freddie at 21 Months old!

mummy,Freddie,update,cheeky,little brother,21 months,baby boy,twenty one,toddler

Freddie Bear you are 21 months old and we are now only 12 weeks away from you turning two! Your big brother is five tomorrow so there is three years three months between you pair!

You are definitely my Mr Mischief! You make James look like an angel at the same age! As soon as anyone opens a door you are off trying to escape! 

You absolutely adore you big brother and you are loving him being on summer holidays from school! You are going to be so upset when he goes back in ten days time and its back to being just you and mummy during the day again! Hopefully you will be starting playgroup for one afternoon a week from January, this will give mummy a few hours break to get stuff done at home that cannot be done while you are at home or you are napping!

You are still wearing a size 5+ night nappy and a size 4 pull up in the day. You hate having your bum changed and love nothing more than running away mid change! Most of your clothes are now 18-24 and there is also the odd 2-3 bit thrown in. 

We are going out tomorrow to for James birthday to xxx, so I hope you boys have a brilliant day! We still have no idea what we are going to do to celebrate you turning two!

We have had a brilliant summer going to soft play, the park, the Metrocentre, Sure Start and Warkworth Castle. You really love being outside and playing in water, so if we are somewhere with water then there is always spare clothes for you as you are sure to get soaking wet! You have been known to go into Sure Start dry and within minutes of you getting outside to the water tray you are soaked!

You are definetly still a mamas boy!

Love you always baby bear xx

Tuesday 22 August 2017

Warkworth Village Show 2017

The third weekend in August is always a big weekend for the Northumberland village of Warkworth.

The annual village show has been going for 147 years and it's a big weekend!

This year was the first year I had been in a long time and it was also the first time I had taken James and Freddie.

The castle is run by English heritage, but for the show day you get your castle entrance fee covered in your show entrance.

Ever since my parents moved to the village just over a year ago, James has been obsessed with going to the castle, so show day was a brilliant day for James as he got to spend hours exploring! 
With a huge marquee set up and split into three sections, with the first section being the competition section, with cake, biscuits, flowers and vegetables to writing, photography and more there are certainly a lot of prizes to give out! The middle section is crafts being demonstrated and sold. The final section is the refreshments! This was run by the WI from the nearby village of Ulgham. 
There was a fun run which started in the castle keep and finishing in the moat, a dog show and also a children's fancy dress competition. 
Local animal charity Shak were there with some of their rescue dogs. James totally fell in love with a white greyhound called Skye. 
Inside the castle keep there was small tents with things like English heritage memorabilia and Northumberland college at Kirkly Hall. There was also circus skills being demonstrated  and things for the visitors to try out. James however was just happy to have free explore his favourite place!
I'm already looking forward to next years show, which by my calander will be on Saturday August 18th 2018!

Sunday 6 August 2017

Fifth Birthday Wishlist

So in just under nine weeks time, my big boy James turns FIVE!! I mean seriously it does not seem five minutes since he was turning one and now he’s a big school boy turning five! James is the last of his school friends to turn five with his birthday being the 26th August.

We have been asking James what he would like for his birthday and the following are things that he has asked for!

A Volcano – now this is something of an odd one, I can only assume he saw something on YouTube about volcano’s and it stuck in his mind as something he wanted to get!

This is the first one we have been looking at. This is £10.99 and available from Toys r Us.

These next two are from and are priced at 5.99 each. 

The second thing James has asked for is an orchard toys game called Crazy Chef. We bought this for one of his little school pals and well James just loves orchard toys games! He already has a few of them and they really capture his imagination!
We found this game on for £5.61and £7.99 at Toys r Us.

The third thing James has asked for is an ice dragon. Now we have had no luck online finding an ice dragon so I think he might be disappointed with this one!

As James is turning five mummy has been looking to see if she can find anything she wants to get him online.  Nana and Gaga are looking at getting him a bike, so mummy and daddy will be getting the safety equipment.

As James loves Spiderman I saw this set on Toys r us website and though James would love it for his new bike!

I think James would totally love this set, as its a basket, bell and bottle all Spiderman branded. This retails for £12.99 at toys r us.

We also found this Spiderman branded helmet also from toys r us retailing for £14.99

So this is our wish list for James turning five! If anyone has any other good ideas please let me know!

** All images from Amazon and Toys r Us**

Friday 4 August 2017

Newcastle NE1 Motor Show 2017

The weekend of the 8-9th July was the weekend that Newcastle city centre came to a standstill as Grainger Street and Grey Street hosted the NE1 Motor Show.

The last time we went it was 2015 and James wasn't even three and I was pregnant with Freddie. Then last year poor James was actually ill the weekend of the show so we had to miss it, so we made sure we went this year!

James had a brilliant time! He got to sit in an old racing car and another old car, but the highlight for James was sitting in an Aston Martin V12 Vantage! He was also wearing his Aston Martin jumper that his big cousin who works for them gave him.

Check out our photos from the day! 

Wednesday 2 August 2017

James First 100 High Frequency Words Challenge

James has just finished his Reception year at school, and one of the things he has struggled with has been his High Frequency Words.

The guidelines for Reception say that the children should know 100 words by the end of the school year, James however is only on the second set of the 100. 

He is such a stubborn boy and the words he has, he does know, its just he messes around when you are trying to go through them with him!

So mummy has found all the words he should know by now and I have printed them out and cut them out and James is going to learn these over the summer!

Check back in September to see how we did on our challenge!

We found the words on this website: