The loveliest book for children – but you’ll have to be quick!

We have the most beautiful children’s book in our house. When you read the words personalised children’s book you automatically think “Toy Story with my child and his three best mates names inserted strategically along the predicable narrative” but this is a story with a huge difference. For every child’s name, there is a different story. Lost My Name is a lovely story about a child who wakes up to find that the name on his door has gone, and with it, his memory of what his name is. He embarks on an adventure to find his name, meeting strange …

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Hyde Park Winter Wonderland: Wot so Funee?

Last week we had an invite to the spectacular Hyde Park Winter Wonderland experience. Mummy has always wanted to go, but balked at stories of queues and prices with young children in tow. Come the day, Mummy was ill in bed with gastric flu. Being caring souls, we deposited a tray of lucozade and paracetamol by her pillow, and gave her a cheery wave before heading off with Daddy in search of hedonism. What we did at Winter Wonderland   We rode the giant observation wheel – 3 revolutions in 5 minutes were just perfect to show us everything we …

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Wedding photos – our beautiful family

I really did not know that this was the wedding I wanted. We had our dream day 13 years ago, and we were happy with it. But as the years went on, the desire to add to our family, the miscarriages, the fertility treatment, the news from experts that we would not have children – they all changed us. We were leaving. We were part-way through the process of emigrating (we couldn’t live in middle-class suburbia amongst all the nuclear familes when we didn’t have one) when we realised that our daughter was on her way. She changed our lives, as …

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Announcing the #TescoMumOfTheYear finalists.

I’m always telling my mum that she’s the best mum ever. (Except when I’m cross with her – which happens most days). Despite all her misdemeanours – limiting reading time, insisting on sleep, hiding the pick ‘n mix – I think she’s actually quite cool. She says I’ll change my mind in a couple of years, so she’s making the most of it. But even I can see she’s nothing like the Tesco Mum of the Year finalists. These women work tirelessly for others, not just their own families, but other families in need. And what’s more, many of them …

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Sensational wedding sweets: Wot so Funee? (Review)

You cannot fail to have noticed that we had a wedding-style celebration in our family recently. The party was truly epic, complete with Abba band, fireworks and fizz on arrival. Being only 9, the Prosecco was completely disinteresting for me, so I insisted on another kind of wedding favour treat to be handed out to the children: Wedding Sweets from The Gobstopper A few weeks before the big event the Bug and I went through The Gobstopper’s website searching for appropriate treats. The conversation went something like this: Bug: Where are the bonbons? Me: Ohh yes bonbons, but they have …

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Hogwarts at Christmas: my Mum is a witch

  My Mum is evil. I don’t say this lightly, because I love my Mum – today. I didn’t yesterday because she did the Hogwarts at Christmas tour. And she didn’t take me! I know! Evil, right? The Making of Harry Potter studio tour from Warner Brothers has been closed for a week – which is pretty epic news in itself, given that 6,000 visitors pass through its doors each day. But this is what they’ve been doing: They actually sieved fake snow onto the awesome Hogwarts model! Part of the tour over the festive period involves an explanation of …

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Wedding vows: part 2

The groom read his vows from his tablet

Image credit: Stephanie Belton Having seen the love for Mummy’s wedding vows, Daddy was keen to share his own words from the day. It’s copy pasted from his own typing, which he sent from his iPad, which he also used at the altar to read his vows from! Hels Bels, H Mc B, I really do love you so much. You are & will always be my best friend. You give me advice & support when I ask for it, tell me to pull myself together when I don’t ask. Though sometimes you do seem to take my bosses point …

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Our wedding readings to Mum and Dad: Wot so Funee?

Not a misappropriated word or witty anecdote this week, simply a reiteration of wedding readings my brother and I made at M&D’s vow renewals. Some cute, some funny, all endearing, and for some reason made my Mum cry. Can’t think why, I did my bit perfectly! GG’s reading, from A Lovely Love Story, by Edward Monkton: The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice. Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was, after all, his cage. Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur. The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaur’s cage with kind words and loving thoughts. I …

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Life Lessons: How to be a Feminist

I have wanted to write to my children – especially my daughter -about feminism for a long time. Since I was first targeted by a handful of women who decided that I was sickening, because of the way I write this blog. The trouble is, when a woman writes about feminism, there’s always the chance that a feminist will pitch up and attempt to put her in her place. So I wimped out and asked a man to give me his opinion. Stuart Heritage writes for the Guardian, amongst other gigs, and if you can get past the fact that he …

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Renewing our wedding vows – my promise to you

By Helen, to Jason… M&D 2000 My wedding vows to you… Things I have learned in 13 years of marriage. Marriage is not hearts and flowers. That is romance. It is not expensive dinners and weekends in the country. That is courtship. Although our weekends in the country usually involved a rainy football match in Swindon. I think you’d call that love. Marriage is not white dresses and diamond rings, canapés or cake. (Although cake, it has to be said, is of vital importance to most things). Marriage is not a happy ending. It is socks on the floor, coffee …

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Dancing without stabilisers

By GG and the Bug…    Shhh! More exciting news on the wedding anniversary party. Don’t tell Mummy I’ve hijacked her computer. It’s supposed to be a secret. Remember how we told you that M&D wanted to do a few things differently to their wedding 13 years ago? Well one of those things happens on the dance floor. Last time there had been far too much wine to afford anything more than a shuffle during their first dance. In fact, as Mummy tells it, Daddy used her to help him remain on his feet for the whole of Shania Twain’s You’re …

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Beautiful artwork and personalised cards at a sensible price

By GG… On Monday I shared the very exciting news with you that Mum and Dad are getting married. Again. It has been 13 years since they married, and whilst they had a fabulous day, with good friends and family, there are now other people in our lives who we didn’t know then, and we want to celebrate with them too. A large part of these new additions to our social circle has been afforded purely by the arrival of moi. Well, moi and mon cute petit frère. From ante-natal coffee-mates, to a select number of mothers trusted to walk us …

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When I grow up: Wot so Funee?

By the Bug I’ve discovered a new passion at school, and so I have decided what I’m going to be when I grow up. We’ve been learning about science, watching cheese, and bread and acorns fester and go mouldy in our classroom. I’ve seen films about scientists, and I like the look of what they do in their labs. So when I grow up I’m going to be a scientist. I announced this fact to my family just the other day: “I’m learning to be a good scientist, so I might be a bit busy sometimes when I come home …

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Life Lessons: How to have the wedding you want

By Helen… Dear children, 13 years ago today your Dad and I had the most amazing party. It was bonfire night, and we’d booked fireworks for our wedding celebrations. There was an Abba tribute band, terrible food, and too much wine; no-one wanted to go home. Looking back, I wouldn’t have changed much of that day at all, but there were many things I wished we had done differently in the months preceding our big day, and a couple of them have nagged at me over the years. When your own big days come – if and when you decide …

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Date Night for Mums and Dads??

By GG…  Date night. Two words which leave me shuddering in disgust. It’s not so much the getting ready – I’m actually quite partial to Mummy’s wardrobe, and there’s always a chance of a dab of powder and a smear of lippy coming my way if I keep her company as she dresses. It’s not the prospect of a babysitter either. I’m a savvy creature, and I can normally convince them that yes, I am allowed to stay up for the whole of X Factor, and yes, I usually get hot chocolate and hobnobs before I go to bed. So …

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When pyjama day became party day: Wii Party U review

A rather epic parcel arrived in the post yesterday. As with another recent delivery, the word awesome was used quite a lot by my brother. As luck would have it, yesterday was also the day we had planned for a pyjama day, and we quickly cast aside all thoughts of baking, movies and craft in favour of exploring this box of goodies. We were beside ourselves with excitement and wanted to get started straight away. It did take Mummy about half an hour to set us up, but then she is a neat freak and wanted all the cables tidied …

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