Thursday, 28 December 2017

Oh December how I love thee so

Oh December how I love thee so, even though you did bring snow.

A visit to Santa's grotto, "Be good, he's watching," became my motto.

Baking cakes and making decorations, stuffing my face with chocolate celebrations.

The elf on the shelf, and a Christmas fair, as many traditions as I dare.

And just like that it was Christmas eve, a magical night for all to believe.

"He's been!" Oh the wonder of Christmas day, and I hope that many pleasures came your way.

Sunday, 24 December 2017

I can't believe he is 4

I asked Tommy, if this year, he would like a Transformer's birthday party. It was Spider-man last year, Postman Pat the year before, and a circus theme for his first birthday (he was too young to choose the theme for his first birthday, so mummy stepped in).
His reply?
"I want a Transformers party and Spider-man and Captain America and Iron Man and Batman and Hulk."
He's certainly a little boy who knows what he wants. And why not aim high and want it all?!
My response?
"Okay, let's have a Transformers and superhero party!" (whilst frantically searching Amazon for suitable items).
So this is exactly what we did. Courtesy of superhero bunting from Etsy (I figured it could be displayed in his bedroom/summer fetes at a later stage), and transformers party supplies from Amazon.
It was worth every minute of searching and decorating and wrapping, to see his little face on his 4th birthday.
Nanny, pappa and dadda (dadda is his name for grandad as he couldn't pronounce grandad, and it's kind of stuck) were also there to celebrate.
Oh and it was my birthday too. I nearly always forget this fact!
I didn't smash my mobile phone this year but I did superglue my fingers together. Despite this, it was a fabulous day.
Especially when Tommy, whilst munching Transformer's birthday cake, beamed at me and gave me the thumbs up.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

The day Scarlet Moss was born (sort of)

Way back in the bright, light, depth of Summer, I had an idea.
The garden was set to fete mode (again), and I was showcasing my stalls and rules to my guests.
"It's like a photography shoot, full of props and backdrops," my dear friend complimented. We then began talking about my passion for setting scenes.
Of course I had to capture the day's fete scenes on my camera, so I bossed Tommy about regrading positions. Thus the conversation progressed to photography, and my love of it.
In between dishing out popcorn and playing lucky dip, the conversation turned to things to photograph with the aim of earning money from.
My friend suggested there was money to be made in children's photography. I agree that parents will often pay a substantial fee for a special, lasting, memory of their loved ones. But I couldn't see myself getting too excited about patiently waiting for other children to smile at the camera, and patiently listening to other parent's criticising my approach and product.
It was then I realised I am not necessarily driven by money, it has to come from the heart. There has to be passion. I have to be passionate about something.
It was after hook a duck and ice-creams that I confessed to my dream of a vintage shop, buying and selling items, and setting up pictures to photograph.
Step forward etsy. I showed my friend my latest etsy find, a children's vintage deckchair, and then I proceeded to gush about the fabulous stuff I was buying via etsy.
"I'd love to open my own vintage shop one day," said I.
And then I came to the executive decision that I have to stop saying and thinking, one day.
What about today?
Three weeks later, or thereabouts, I opened Scarlet Moss Vintage.
So you see, dear readers, I have a perfectly good excuse as to why I have kept away for so long. I had to throw all my spare time, energy and enthusiasm into launching the shop.
I have bidded on ebay, browsed around vintage markets, picked up bargains in charity shops, and learnt a heap of stuff along the way. I have bought a logo, printed business cards, advertised on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Not to mention the many, many photographs. And I get to write about treasures that I love. It's everything I love all rolled into one.
Scarlet Moss Vintage is now two months old. She has made nineteen sales, boasts seven glowing reviews, has 273 followers on Instagram, 117 on Twitter and about 70 on Facebook.
Granted, it's still very early days and there is still a long way to go. But it's been the most glorious beginning.
For she is delightfully chaotic, a beautiful mess, loving her is a splendid adventure.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Farewell summer

I am perfectly aware we are in the midst of autumn.
Unfortunately, I simply have not had the time to officially finish summer on FPE.
I must apologise.
I do, however, have a reasonable excuse.
Because I am a little tease, and a story teller (so I like to believe), I shall continue my reasonable excuse in my next post.
I expect you are quivering with anticipation. Or something like that.

For now, I shall leave you with my memories of summer 2017.

A personal favourite and a promised tradition - strawberry picking at our local farm.

Another favourite of my own and now Tommy's too - picnics at the local park. Even when it threatened to rain/did rain.

When the rain proved too much, we definitely had an indoor picnic.

The sun always shines on the righteous, and at my auntie Helen's birthday barbie. A cracking excuse to all be together again.

I arranged another summer fete in our garden, this time for my dear friend Eve and my beautiful god daughter (who Tommy adores, by the way).

Tommy's vegetable patch at my parent's house is coming on leaps and bounds, with special thanks to Auntie Wendy and her thoughtful gardening gifts.

The roof came off Tommy's plastic car, so we have called it a convertible. Tommy loved the new name.

The biggest Spider-man fan in the world flirted with the idea of Superman, as you can see.

Oh and he also decided he liked posing for the camera. He usually tells me to go away/stop pointing the camera at me mummy.

I'm so happy - just look at those smiles.
Alas, the posing phase hasn't quite lasted.
But at least I have my smiley memories of summer 2017.
And I sincerely hope you had a blast, dear readers.

Friday, 6 October 2017

Then we all went down the pub

So I asked Mark if he wanted a party for his 40th.
He didn't want a party.
Well, perhaps I should explain here, we do not have a house big enough to accommodate such an occasion. And he didn't want me to book the local village hall. Nor did he want to do something which didn't involve Tommy.
Therefore, part two of Mark's 40th was spent at our local pub, with family and friends.
It was kind of a party.
Yes, I guess you could call it a summer afternoon party. With plenty of guests, a cold buffet, lashings of Prosecco, and a jolly good time by all.
It isn't often that both sides of your family, and all your friends, are together at exactly the same time, would you agree?
It was definitely a day to be treasured.
Even now, a few weeks later (okay, I'm a little behind), I often think about that day and just how great it was.

Everyone. We literally overtook the pub garden.

My fab family.

Mark and his mates.

Tommy and his mates.

Tommy and his girls.

My girls.

The kids.

When Tommy met Mia (my cousin's little girl).

My bestie and her son.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

You're never too old to play hide and seek

As is tradition in our little home; the night before Mark's birthday I blew balloons, hung bunting and banner, wrapped presents and generally made the lounge fit for a birthday.
And not just any old birthday, a 40th birthday. Mark's 40th to be precise.

Another birthday tradition - myself and Mark book the day off work and enjoy the day together with Tommy. This year Mark chose to spend the day in London. Which incidentally was Tommy's first journey on a train and his first trip to the capital city. (We combined special birthday and Tommy experience.)

Tommy absolutely loved his first train ride. More than the big old castle that is The Tower of London.

We spent a lovely afternoon at St Katherine's Dock. When Mark and I were courting we used to frequently visit.

Mark and I don't do birthday presents to each other, we do meals out. Here's where we ate and what we ate, in case you were wondering.

Then we watched the boats on the River Thames and walked along London Bridge.

Three days a week, twice a day, I walk past a funky bar and hotel in London and I am always curious of its contents. So we decided to enter location. Tommy loved it as it had lots of old toys and weird things to play with. And lots of different areas to play hide and seek! You're never too old to play hide and seek as far as I'm concerned.