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The five of us packed our car and set off in some trepidation for Mullion in August. This was the first time we'd all gone away together for 2 weeks and the thought of 2 adults and 3 kids in caravan was still taking some getting used to. Well to say it was the best time is an understatement. Not only is Lizard so beatiful, you could stay in a dustbin and have a good time, but Mullion Holiday Park was fantastic! It was safe enough for the kids to feel independent and explore on their own (aged 7, 8 & 9), but we got a break too. The van was clean and much larger than we expected and was really well equipped. The staff were friendly and helpful too and they layout of the whole complex made everything so easy. My son wants to go to Mullion for his birthday present next year he enjoyed it so much. Will definately be going back!
Fortunately my kids don't think so, but my step daughter does. Hallowe'en is almost upon us and that has sparked the great boring debate in our house. My kids are 7 and 9, my step daughter is 8. She's not with us for Hallowe'en this year for which I am truly thankful. The problem ... I won't let them go out Trick Or Treating!!! Instead, they'll dress up, have friends roud for a tea party and play spooky games. I live in a relatively safe area, but I still will not let them out. My step daughter lives in a rougher area about 30 miles away and each year we hear her tales of 'egging buses', etc - yes I said she was just 8! Its true I used to go out trick or treating when I was young, and although I'm not that old (honest)I do think things have changed. I really strongly believe trick or treating should be discouraged, as it not only puts our kids at risk, but frighens elderly people who get preyed upon. Am I boring?
As a tesco direct veteran I have to say that although I will continue to use tesco for my large orders, there are times when I really do have to remember the 'convenience' of it all. Now I have used Tesco since the beginning of this year, in fact as soon as they started delivering to my area. You see I hate shopping, I mean really hate it. Like many of you I thought a dream come true. Three times, however, my shopping has not arrived!!!! Well, it did eventually, after much arguing with the store. Three times I've been told the van has broken down, they didn't think to telephone me to let me know. I've spent longer pacing back and fore than it would have taken to load hubby and kids into care and drive there myself (well not literally as I don't drive). Unfortunately and surprisingly, customer service doesn't seem to figure high on theor priorities, but if it happens to you, get on the phone straight away. In all 3 cases, I've got at least the £5 delivery charge refunded - but you have to argue the toss with them a bit. When the service works it is the greatest invention known to man, they still could do with smoothing out the wrinkles for it doesn't.
A while ago I entered a competition ... the prize being a £2000 dream holiday with lastminute.com. Lo and behold I won! Now, being a boring old sole with a hubby and 3 kids, I really didn't fancy taking the holiday (I know, there's no explanation really). I got in touch with last minute to clarify the details and they said I had £2000 to spend on anything on the site and it didn't have to be in one go. Taking a closer look, they have gifts, electronics, cd's etc so I though brilliant. My first order was my husbands dream come true a really huge snooker table. I emailed them on the monday and it arrived on the Friday. Next a digital camera, again only 3 days before it arrived! Their sevice has been exceptional, with emails every step of the way and no hassle at all. I've still got a large chunk of the voucher to spend, but I'll do that next week after I've been to Old Trafford to watch Man Utd v Leeds - aagain courtesy of last minute.
... then I found femail. I have used the interent for about four years - only once ever entering a chatroom in all that time. Being nervous enough anyway, I shot straight back out when I discovered two lesbians having a flirting session. Not that I have a problem with that, and I do not shock that easily, but lets say it was inappropriate! Since then, I've stuck with the safe anonymity of message boards, until recently. I found Femail through a message board were it was being criticised has being full of middle-aged housewives. As one not to resist the opportunity of a 'nose' I had a peek .... ... not a middle-aged housewife in sight! They may be of course, nut a funnier, more supportive group you will not find. I quickly progressed from the boards to the chat room and was welcomed with open cyber arms and the warning - watch out, its addictive! Since then I've bared my soul in various ways and found the ears to listen but not criticise, a shoulder to cry on, but not pity and a sense of humour from some of the bravest women you'd ever 'meet' that makes you laugh out loud, which is embarrasing when you find yourself talking to your monitor. A big thumbs up girls, long may you reign
When the news is full of shock stories and we become dedsensitised to cruelty, why does this book have such an impact? My mum lent me a child called it. She had bought it that day and read it straight through. She then insisted I read it. It took me 2 days, which with kids and husband is a miracle. Its child like, sweetness and innocence makes it all the more painful to read. It leaves you with the feeling that you need to understand the things that were NOT written about as well as those that were. A child called it is book 1 in a trilogy by Dave Pelzer which is in his own words, the story of how he found the courage to survive the most horrendous child abuse. This book covers from age 4 to 12 in hi somplistic childs view of the world, the terror he felt everyday and his struggle to survive. An inspiring yet upsetting book, it is one which I feel should be read by anybody and everybody. I have since ordered the next 2 books fom Amazon, the Lost boy and a man called Dave. As you then HAVE to know how anyone can survive the apalling tales from book one.
For all those of you using Unlimited Freeserve Time, I can't speak for the other time plans, I have just spoken to their billing enquiries centre and though I should pass it on. They haven't been taking the direct debits from accounts - well not mine anyway. They are behind and are catching up now and I have been advised that all bills due for payment will be taken in one go. Fortunately, I have only had 2 bills and as I don't use the phone service just the isp, its only £20, but for those of you thinking you had got away with BE WARNED - you could get a nasty shock. They aren't particularly apologetic about the apalling way their service has deteriorated recently. I am fast losing my patience with Freeserve.
Here's a tip for how to make cleaning those lovely food splashes off the inside of your microwave and remove iffy whiffy smells at the same time... Fill a bowl with boiling water Add a good splash of lemon juice Pop in the microwave on full for at least 3 minutes - but make sure it doesn't boil dry. When pinged - carefully remove the bowl of water then just wipe the inside of the microwave with a damp cloth. hey presto - all the marks come off easily and you have a nice smelling microwave!
if like me, you are a bleach fan and like to liberally coat your house in the stuff every so often then try this. Domestos Germguard is a gel bleach that can be used on most surfaces as a stain remover/disinfectant. In our house, I also keep a spray bottle with a little in the bottom diluted with water. A good shake and the spray can then be used to clean other surfaces that you normally wouldn't go near with bleach like carpets! Obviously check first but instead of buying a seoarate spray, diluting the gel really works saving money. I've gone a bit mad and used it on everything - Carpets and painted walls have been fine after using it.
.... to Eastenders recently. It can't just be me surely. Since the sad departure of Ethel, the show has slid the slope into a poor shadow of its former self. Mo Harrison and family are the worst actors I've ever seen, Robbies infatuation with Cat is getting boring and the whole programme just makes me cringe! Why do I still watch it then, I hear you ask? Well because every time I leave it for a few weeks, it eventually gets a grip and starts turning out entertaining TV. It will get better soon won't it? My kids like it and the subjects it brings up are a good way of introducing the children to some aspects of life. They normally love it, but even they are getting bored with it now. Come on, buck your ideas up!
I went into my local faithfull Woolies, to get a couple of pairs of school trousers for my son, he's 8 and gets through them quite quickly and Woolies ones have always been great. What happened to the quality? The choice was very limited which wasn't too much of a problem, but what they had hannging there was awful! The clothes were all creased with threads hanging everywhere you were afraid to touch them in case they unravelled in front of you. The fabric was really disgusting, shiny stuff and when you held the trousers up the legs weren't even the same size. BUT, if they are going to compromise quality they they should be cheaper too, but no these were still £9.99! You could have bought better from the local market. Woolies can be expensive (well to me) for kids clothes, but I shan't buy anything from them again. Woolies clothes had always been good quality, but the range they have in there now is expensive rubbish. OOh that's better.
t'is the time of year for furtively hiding things in cupboards and trying to make sneaky shopping trips. Yup the run up to Christmas. Etoys is a brilliant site that takes all the hassle out of christmas shopping Main advantages are 1) well laid out site with easy to search/browse categories for all ages 2) reasonably priced toys, books, software, games (the same price as amazon I've found) 3) a massive range of toys from the cheap stocking fillers to the more expensive items - they've got dolls from a fiver to £250! 4) the ability to create and save shopping lists - I'm buying for 3 kids so I've got a wish list for each of them, plus another one for nieces/nephews, etc 5) reasonable delivery costs and options including an express service and even gift wrapping if you need it 6) secure safe shopping - and they take SOLO I haven't found any disadvantages yet. My christmas shopping is going to be so easy this year!
Last christmas I bought Kerplunk for my kids. I had it as a child, as I think most people did, its like twister, its almost a part of our heritage! I was looking forward to playing it with them and when the fateful boxing day boredom hit, we got it out with me saying line like "this is brilliant - mumm used to play this all the time when she was liitle" and getting groans from all around me. Well they were right to groan. What have they done to it! Ok I know its made of plastic, and maybe I've got rose tinted spectacles, but its construction was little mroe than stiff cling film! It was so badly moulded, balancing the cylinder on the base was an art in itself. The 'straws' were like hair! The holes were far too big in fact it took longer to set the thing up than it did to play it! Whose kids are going to have the patience for that - not mine that's for certain. So now, dear old kerplunk i sresting in the forgotten toy cupboard - or maybe its in the 'lets hide it from mum place' and I can't blame them. At christmas there's always some things you buy that you know won't make it till New Year, that's half the fun. But its a shame. Obviously any company tries to keep its manufacturing costs down, but surely not at the expense of quality. As my kids grow older, I'm scared to find out what other important parts of our cultural heritage has been reduced to!