Monday, 14 February 2011

I *heart* Valentine's Day

Life is too short and I believe we should enjoy every day as much as we can. Therefore we should celebrate as much as we can so if there is a celebration to be had, join in! There will be some grumpy boots out there complaining about Christmas becoming too commercial, the Americans introducing Halloween and Valentine's day but there is nothing to stop the shops from doing this really and if you can't beat them join them! The monkeys and I truly enjoyed this morning, they'd been looking forward to it all week (well since the Chinese New Year's celebrations waned off).

The monkeys woke up to a little surprise: a chocolate heart shaped treat with a card from the lovely June Lily studio. These were free to download and ever so cute.

I got up earlier this morning to make them eggs on toast (both in heart shapes!). This sounds like I never make them anything in the morning, which is not true of course but I wasn't sure how much time heart shapes would take with a half sleepy head!

Girl monkey composed me a poem at the table:

Dear Valentine
Dear Valentine
I love you said mum, I do
It's Valentine's day
Hearts all around
Love is in our hearts


And then we got a fantabulous delivery:

And look what was in the handbag:

A very pretty and delicious selection of cupcakes from Airy Fairy Cupcakes. Can't wait to tuck in!

After our lovely breakfast I went to have a neck and shoulder massage. I think I pulled a muscle whilst having my hair washed at the salon the other day. I have been suffering from a stiff and painful neck since and it is spreading throughout my back. I've been taking Arnica and Ibuprofen. Any other tips gratefully received!

Shortly I will be off to pick up a delivery of Shloer. Nothing better to celebrate Valentine's day with a few bottles of tasty bubbles. As it's for the monkeys and it is only Monday after all a few Shloer cocktails are the perfect treat. The monkeys call it kids champagne and even demand to have it in champagne glasses. We'll pretend we're drinking Kir Royal later.
I've been asked if I can prepare food in a heart shaped dish tonight (should have chosen that one instead of the turquoise dish); let's see if I can snap one up in the sales next week and I shall be prepared for next year!

Happy Valentine's everyone!

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Turquoise Delight

I had some rather exciting post today. Usually it is just bills or unwanted marketing (even though I've signed up to eliminate this). But today I got four exciting letters and a lovely parcel courtesy of CSN Furniture Stores: a fabulous Le Creuset turquoise baking dish. I've always wanted a Le Creuset product. I think the colours are fab and apparently they are of great quality too. I've had numerous baking dishes over the years and they all seem to crack within a year of purchase so hopefully this one will last longer.

On top of that it is in my favourite colour: turquoise. I will have some friends over for dinner tonight so I might be adventurous and make something in it. And can I just say compliments to DHL this was only in transit for a day. After all the hassle I've had with Royal Mail (see previous post) in the past few months this was rather refreshing!

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Kung Hei Fat Choi

Today was the day that the monkeys have been looking forward to for weeks: the day of the Chinese New Year Parade in Manchester's China Town. It's been a yearly highlight since we moved here nearly seven years ago. Over the years we had a lot of screaming with fear from either of them and there was a little anticipation again from boy monkey today but there was no need to worry as we only saw the end of the parade. No dragon in sight just some fireworks.

We went to the usual supermarket to stock up on our favourite Chinese biscuits, sweets and crackers and of course some delicious Jasmine tea.
Along the way we acquired some paper dragons and a free bottle of Amoy soy sauce that were handed out. How nice is that! I passed on the scientology newspaper; I think I can deal with my own stress. Instead got a fortune cookie, which told me that I will soon discover my hidden talent. I shall let you all know when I find out. It's not going to be singing that's for sure.

We are currently waiting for a food delivery from the best Chinese take away The Laughing Buddha in Didsbury. With that we will have started the Year of the Rabbit nicely. I love traditions and I love celebrations. Life is too short and I think the more fun things we can do the better. Next on the calendar will be Valentine's day.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Zzzzzzzz......Sound Asleep

Girl monkey is ready for the holidays, she's had a very busy week. On Tuesday she took part in the G*Mania musical, yesterday she had the wonderful task of being in a focus group at Boohoo for their younger range Boohoo sister and today she sang in the Manchester Young Linguists award. I think for once she will sleep well.

G*Mania was a great experience for her. The cast (amongst others Rikki Loney and Shaun Smith) were a delight. All the boys were so good with the little ones and the girls were cheering from the wings. I think she never wanted to leave that stage.

Then yesterday she absolutely loved going to the Boohoo office. She could not stop looking around and felt really grown up sitting in a meeting! The girls got some lovely goodies to take home: her hat-scarf-mittens (I am sure there is a cool word for this) has not left her since.

Luckily sleep is being aided by this amazing invention: a Sound Asleep pillow. When I read about the competition on Kids Confidential I thought why not give it a try and was delighted when I won. I thought that this would be a nicely scented lavender cushion, something really relaxing. However it has an inbuilt plug for an ipod or you could connect it to a CD player (for louder volume!) and listen to your favourite songs. I really hoped this would not do the trick and was almost disappointed. I had visions of girl monkey dancing around her bed and getting excited from all her favourite tunes. On the contrary, she obviously absolutely loves it (what's not to like for an eight year old?) but does fall asleep whilst listening to her music. Brilliant! Thank you Kids Confidential for letting me win this!
I am glad too that it is half term now as I feel like I am currently employed as a taxi driver.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

From UFO & UFA to FO & FA

With all good intentions I vowed to do my tax return straight away in April last year and guess what? This happened again last minute. Although all related paperwork was in one pile there were about 6 other piles that needed filing so that is what I have been doing in the last few days. Had very little sleep as a result but my life seems to be in files now. UnFinished Admin is now Finished Admin. Yay!

Every year I plan to get rid of the UnFinished Objects as well but that also is a slow process. My craft room is full of things to finish and (I know this gets boring), I do plan to get on with a couple. This week I pleased boy monkey by cuting up my sister's coat and sew the back image onto a pillow that grandma gave us last summer. My sister never really keeps anything, she's is quite the opposite from me but I think this coat must have been quite expensive and she hoped that I could use it for something, and I did! Everyone happy. It was a Donaldson coat, a brand that was quite popular in Holland in the 90's but I am not sure it still exists.
Next project is finishing a quilt that has been in the making for 10 years! I never have an issue getting any Busy Betsy orders out but when it comes to making things for me or the monkeys it takes a little time. Wish me luck and hope to show the finished quilt soon!