Monday, 27 October 2008

Great news

I am one very PROUD mum, as my daughter has just qualified as a Dental Nurse,

am totally over the moon, she has worked hard for this, studying does not come easy to her, so tends to leave things to the last minute, lol

To train you have had to be working in a dental practice before they will let you join the course, so has been working full time for the last 3 years, but going to college in the evenings, but it has paid off and she's passed.
We celebrated with a Chinese takeaway, (which is always good for your teeth, lol)


we are all very, very proud of you xxx

Saturday, 25 October 2008

Weight loss recipe: no. 5

Pork with tomatoes and red wine

35g (12 oz) pork tenderloin or fillet cut into strips
1 large onion chopped
400g (14 oz) can chopped tomatoes with herbs
150ml (1/4 pt) red wine
1 tbsp tomato puree
150ml (1/4 pt) hot vegetable stock
1 tsp dried Italian mixed herbs
225g (8 oz) mushrooms
2 courgettes, sliced thickly
2 tsp cornflour

Dry fry the pork and onions for 5 mins, then stir in the canned tomatoes, red wine, tomato puree, stock, herbs, mushrooms and courgettes. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 15 mins.
Blend the cornflour with a little water to make a paste and stir into the pork mixture, simmer uncovered, for 1-2 mins for sauce to thicken, season and serve.

We tend to have it with steamed rice and spring onions.

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Little Canada

Talking about Clive and I having our first break away together for a long time, bought back memories of Stevens first time away with the school last year.
That was over the I.O.W to a place called Little Canada, here's the double layout I did of some of the photos.
The post I wrote about Little Canada is here

His 2nd holiday with the school was again over the I.O.W back in May this year. This time it was to the UK sailing Centre, and he loved it. What made it special was that one of his closes friends also went.
I've not made a layout of that one yet, as still waiting for the photo CD from school, again posted about how I felt at the time which is here

Now with this holiday to Butlins, again it's special, in fact I feel it's an extra special one as it will be the one and (probably) the only time he will be away with both of his closest friends.
It also means a lot to 'us' parents of a 'special child' too, as with our older children they often go away or stay with their friends but we NEVER thought we could say that with our younger ones. Steven gets so excited when he sees his friends, we go bowling, to the gym, pub lunches etc. together, but never thought they would have a sleepover or holiday together without their parents.

So when I do a layout for this holiday it will be extra special as it will be the first and probably the last time the three go away together as even though the school are making this annual school trip for the 6th form, Nick leaves school next year and Steven and Chris in 2010.

so that is why 'us' parents are ALL skipping the country

but all in different directions, the others are off to Portugal and Barcelona, lol

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Technology, don't you just love it

It's such a wonderful thing.....

I know, I know, a few weeks ago I was moaning about the Internet, Virgin and Yahoo and I probably will again, but at the weekend it worked wonders for me.

Steven is off on another school trip, to Butlins in Bognor Regis this time, so Clive and I thought we would go away for a bit too, as we've not had more that 2 nights away from home as a couple since Sam was born 21 years ago and that has only been a few times...

so thought it was well overdue...

We had been thinking about seeing one of Clive garden railway buddies layout, so Clive emailed him to see if we were in his area, could we pop in to see him, so told him the dates and he said he would be around some of the time, so that was it, all systems go...

Straight on the Internet booking the channel tunnel, onto ebay for beam converters and a high viability vest, on the phone for the car insurance, breakdown cover and personal Insurance and within a few hours it was sorted...

...we are off over to Paris via the channel tunnel, sorry did I forget to say Clive's friend is English, but living in France with his wife and daughter...

OK I cannot speak a word of French, but who cares, I managed the last couple of times when we took our caravan over the ferry from Portsmouth to St Marlo, just don't asked Sam what I was like, it seems I would say 'Bonjour' when I meant 'au revoir' in fact she won't let me forget it, she still tells people about it and that was 14 years ago...

don't you just love kids

hopefully I will be able to cross another thing off my 'to do' list as I've always wanted to go through the channel tunnel and all being well will be doing it very soon...

Monday, 13 October 2008

I'm so lucky...

Remember the Dotee doll that Sue made and sent me, well it's not the first homemade item I have received from friends on the do-crafts forum, both Steven and I have had some lovely cards over the years, (thank you Susan, to view some of her cards, check out her blog on the left 'ramblings of a housewife') and a lovely little book from Gina, she sent me this a few months back, when I needed cheering up, it's absolutely fab, I just love showing it off.

This is it closed

and this is it opened...

It's called a Squash Book

Again like the dotee doll, it's a thing I would love to try, but not sure I'll have the patience. It was a lovely surprise, thank you Gina, it takes pride of place on my dresser in my lounge, along with my dotee doll. Which is right next to the chair that I live in while on my laptop, lol

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Rock Challenge

Here is the L/O I did of Steven's 2008 Rock Challenge, his school came away with 2 awards this year..

Most Entertaining Performance


The Spirit of Rock Challenge

For previous posts I've wrote about the Rock Challenge click here and here

Friday, 10 October 2008

who's MAKING who's BUYING??

Well have managed to do some scrapping this week, did my October calender page, finished one of Stevens pages, the 2008 Rock Challenge, AND also dug out my Christmas stash for my Christmas cards.

It's funny, was reading a post by jenni on do-crafts saying

"who's MAKING who's BUYING??

meaning who was buying or making their Christmas cards, well she mentioned she was using a kit from QVC the HOT of The Press Cardmakers Personal Shopper, where you get everything to make 88 cards, and I thought what a great idea, the kit sounded good.

It was only later while cooking tea, that I remembered I'd already had this kit had got it from QVC ages ago, and forgotten all about it, lol (don't laugh Susan, just cos you've started using your TSV)

So thanks to Jenni, have dug it out, and hoping to start my Christmas cards in the near future, lol.

so watch this space....

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Guess what I got in the post today...

A dotee doll from Sue (bubbles) who is a member on do-crafts scrapbook forum, and I must say it's even nicer in the flesh, the photo does not do it justed.

The chain stitch and the beads are all hand sown, all the work that has gone in it is unbelievable, it's absolute gorgeous, the tag says...

Dotee dolls are about spreading
love, friendship and joy!

Thank you so much Sue, I felt the sparkly vibes and love from it as soon as I opened the envelope, it was just what I needed today, thank you so much.

Oh yes, if you want to know more about these dotee dolls, check out Sues blog on the left but also where they first originated from...

Sunday, 5 October 2008

weight loss recipe: no. 4

Speedy coq au vin

6 Shallots, halved
450g (1lb) boneless chicken breast, cubed
100g (3 1/2oz) lean smoked bacon, diced
200g (7oz) button mushrooms
425ml (3/4 pint) hot chicken stock
150ml (1/4 pint) full bodied dry red wine
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Dry-fry the chicken and the bacon in a non-stick saucepan for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add the mushrooms and the shallots to the chicken, together with a couple of tablespoons of stock.
Cook briskly for 2 minutes, then reduce the heat and pour on the remaining stock and wine.
Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, thyme and a little seasoning to taste.
Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, and serve.

We have mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables with it, YUM

Saturday, 4 October 2008

from one extreme to another...

WOW what a change in the weather, last weekend was in t/shirt and cropped trousers, where this one am in jeans and a fleece, in fact quite pleased I'm not going to the footy tomorrow. Have given Stevens ticket to one of Stevens friends, as when I first got the season ticket, said we would share it, so 2 boys can get the excitement of the game. We don't care what teams are playing, just as long as the boys enjoy it, that's all that matters, hope Toni and Chris remember top wrap up warm tomorrow.

Yesterday we had Stevens Harvest Festival and Jeans for Genes day at school, which both Clive and I attended, it was not the usual bring some food, as last year Stevens school took to adopt a Special Needs school in Giana, so we donate thing that we would take for granted, like pencils, paper, crayons, etc. It was lovely cos this year the pupils of the school in Giana had sent letters, pictures, photos and even some of their textile work that they make and sell to fund the school, it was lovely display.

Afterwards Clive and I stopped off at B&Q to get some guttering, as we had this idea that when we had our new shed built and fitted last year, we would put guttering up so the rain water can run into a water butt on one side and fix it to a water tube system to feed our trees on the other, so thought we had better get it started, well you cannot rush these things you know, lol

Got all the bits and pieces, and Clive set to work this morning and YEAH got the side with the water butt finished...

(notice the pieces of wood down the side on the floor, well they are there for a reason, it's to stop our tortoises hiding under and behind the shed, lol).

Didn't want to over do things, so we gave the other side a miss today, as it got b****y cold out there, and had also started raining, (at least we know that side works, lol). Also we need the trees to be trimmed before we can fix up the other side.

...and now as I write this, I'm boiling, as this afternoon, we turned the heating on and all the rads on high for half an hour, we were told to do this every couple of months, as it keep the system clear,

boy am I hot, cannot win, lol

off to do tea now, tagliatelle with meatballs and a glass (or two) of black tower rose,

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Proud to be old...

As Pompey, (Portsmouth Football Club for those you are not into Football teams), are playing in the UEFA Cup tonight over in Portugal, thought I would share a double page layout, I did last year of Steven when he was chosen to be one of their mascots back in 2003.

I remember being quite pleasantly surprised when they rang, saying that the database has chosen him to be one of their mascots for the Leicester City game, then the panic set in, they didn't know about his special needs. So I told them that he cannot be left on his own, (even though he was 12 years old). I needn't have worried they were great, said I could have the kit before hand (usually all the mascots get changes in the changing room before the game, then the parents disappear till the end of the game) and I could stay with him the whole time, even walking out onto the pitch if need be.

They really put themselves out for us, making us fit in and so did all the other mascots, this is what is wrote on the page..

Saturday 29th November 2003
Steven was chosen to be a
Pompey Mascot
It was a rainy day so no pre-match kick around,
But in all a VERY emotional day,
with both Leicester City and Portsmouth supporters
giving him a standing ovation, as
we trailed behind the other mascots.
He held hands with no. 4 Boris Zivkovic
and shook hands with both
Teddy Sherringham and Muzzy Izzet
the captains.

We lost 2-0 but it was still a day to


It turned out that Steven was Pompey's first special needs Mascot

and I was their OLDEST, lol (and proud of it, lol)

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

chilling out...

Well looked after Alfie yesterday, and yes went OK, we both survived, he did grizzle most of the time, but managed to get him to eat some finger foods and also have a nap, (OK that was while still holding his piece of toast and sitting in his highchair, lol).
Oh yes didn't get to watch any QVC through the day, think Clive was secretly happy though, in fact never saw any of craft day till late in the evening, saying that, it didn't stop me ordering the TSV and some rotating stamps, lol (but don't tell Clive, he he he, saying that he will be here when they get delivered, oh well that's life).

Had a few chilled out hours earlier this evening, as Steven went out with his sessional worker Claire for tea, (he goes out with her for 3 hours a week for social skills), we have been lucky we get this help. I use to use the time to take Sam to orthodontic appointments, help her with homework, do tea etc. so it didn't really feel that we had a break, but thank goodness those days are over now... basically now there is no need to take Sam anywhere as she can drive herself, and as for tea we eat what we enjoy and what I know Steven would not like, like HOT chilli tacos, OK Sam does not like it either, but at 21 feel she can sort herself out now and again, lol

So we can make the most of having a few free hours of not watching/entertaining Steven, Clive and I have it off to a 'T', he makes the chilli, while I do the yogurt herb dip and dice the cucumber, tomatoes and spring onions up for side dishes, you might think I get the easy job, but the dip is freshly made from the herbs from our garden, so they have to be picked washed and chopped, honest, OK I do buy the natural yogurt, (as gave my yogurt maker away a few years ago, lol) so I think Clive gets the easy part, lol.

By working together, we get time to sit down, relax, have some 'us' time and eat something we both enjoy, oh yes and enjoy a glass of wine (or two).

...and Steven gets to go out without his mum, which seeing by the way he runs out the house waving goodbye, think he enjoys a lot, lol