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Showing posts from June, 2012

Saturday is Caption Day!

I don't normally join in with the popular Saturday Caption day link up, mainly as I cam never come up with any witting captions for the great photos that everyone uses. But this week not only is it being hosted by my friend Jenny , I also managed to take this fantastic photo! Leave your caption in the comments below and then click the badge to see the other entries....

Number fun!

One of the presents Leo got for his birthday was a great little number puzzle, there are two parts to it, the first is very simple and Leo did it with no problems - numbers on one side and pictures on the other. The second is simple maths, for example    3 + 2 = 5  and   9 - 3 = 6  The addition was not too bad but   he was a bit confused by the subtraction as he wanted to count up the pictures and then match the total number and he got quite annoyed when I tried to explain,  so in a fit of inspiration  (as he didn't want to put it away either)   I opened a pack of dolly mixtures and showed him with the sweets..... If you Mummy has 7 sweets and she eats 2, then how many are left? He thought it was hilarious that I ate them and counted what was left, came up with the right answer and matched the puzzle piece.  I got him to do the next one and he ate the sweets this time,  laughing his head off all the while - and getting them all right! Another new and great addition to ou


There is a great prompt for this weeks Gallery, one designed to make us all think a bit more, although immediately several photos popped into my head , it wasn't a hard choice though as I'd already used the one  of the best inflatable in the world   on here last year! One evening not long after Aaron and I had got together we were sat in the pub and 'Father Figure'  by George Michael was played, it's a really random moment that sticks in my mind but I remember we were both just sitting there singing to ourselves and happened to look up just as the lyric 'I will be your Father figure, put your tiny hand in mine '  was sung,   Aaron reached over and I placed my hand on his, it was a moment of great timing..... either that or he was reaching for his drink and I misread it of course! Eight years ago Aaron took my hand and lovingly slipped a gold wedding ring onto my finger. (well, he tried to but it didn't really 'slip' and involved me having t

When the sunshine's grey...

Several years ago I was in the park walking our dog in a little world of my own kicking through the autumn leaves, it was a nice day for the time of year, not too cold, sun shining, nothing wrong with it at all - the kind that us Brits actually get all excited about as it's not raining and nature looks beautiful.  But for no real reason I stopped in the park and it just struck me as grey, I could see the gorgeous reds, yellows, browns and greens all around me but it suddenly lost all its appeal, it just seemed as someone had thrown a sheet over me and I couldn't quite breathe properly. I feel a bit like that now, although I can actually come up with a list of reasons which may or may not make it better now!  and it's not a sheet - it's a suffocatingly hot electric blanket which won't turn down! As a rule I don't like to moan on my blog, I don't know who reads it and I've upset friends in the UK before who have felt sad for me and I feel bad enough a

All Fancy Dress - (Review and giveaway)

As you may know Aaron and I are HUGE fancy dress fans, we've annoyed many of our friends in the past by instigating fancy dress parties (often for no reason at all!)  or convincing everyone to go out dressed in random outfits.  From getting engaged in costume to some fantastic parties  and weekends away   we never like to pass up a chance to dress up! Back in the UK we had amassed a huge collection of costumes but unfortunately decided get rid of them all before moving out to Cyprus. To be fair we've not has much of an opportunity to wear any of them but it's much harder to get hold of things to make outfits here.    So I was really excited when I was offered an outfit from All Fancy, I eagerly surfed my way through my favourite types of costumes - (Fairytale, Burlesque, Greek Goddess etc)  and then realised I no longer had anywhere to wear it! So, instead I headed to the children's section (after convincing Aaron that he didn't NEED a Greek warrior


Flashback Friday - Dad

This weeks Flashback Friday theme, is Dad. In the last week not only has it been Father's Day but also my Dad's birthday. On his 60th birthday as part of his present I 'gave' him '60 memories' - things that particularly stuck in my head from childhood to date.   It took me quite a while to do as but it was very well received, some were a bit random but it got quite difficult towards the end!  Here are a selection of them....       Riding my bike thinking you were holding onto the back and then realising that I had done it on my own.       Teaching me how to play Chess, Backgammon, Othello and Draughts – and letting me think I was good at them!    Always trying to change channel on the TV whilst you were asleep only to have you open your eyes as I pick up the remote.      Trying (and succeeding I once I believe) to convince you we had parked the car on a different level to what we had.       Decorating the Christmas tree

Moving Stories

Today you can find me over at VegemiteVix - a brilliant blog written by an expat Kiwi living in the UK. She is running a new series of guest posts called 'Moving Stories' I'll let her explain in her own words... I've  decided to start a new series here on the blog, called Moving Stories. In it I’m going to feature interviews with some of my favourite expats, and I’m going to share a series of posts on how to Move Worlds Without Losing Your Mind. Keep an eye out for it if expat life could be in your future, or if you just want to dream about the possibilities. To see my story, and others in the series pop ove r to

The Gallery - Family

Compared to many I grew up in a very small family, as far as I knew there were the three of us (Mum, Dad, and me), two sets of Grandparents and an Aunt and Uncle.  There were more scattered about but for various reasons we (or I at least) didn't see them at the time.    In contrast to that, Aaron grew up with the complete opposite,  with his parents, brother and sister along with more Aunt's, Uncles and Cousins than I could ever keep track of -  His Dad was one of eight siblings!  Being the only child in my family compared to Aaron who had his brother and sister and a whole heap of cousins which he was very close to, I have no idea what it is like growing up with other kids around to play and fight with, and I'm a little bit nervous about having 2 boys of my own when I hear of the stories from Aaron's childhood! I remember as a child going to my friends house, she had two brothers and a sister and the noise scared the life out of me!  I was quiet and shy a

What to expect when.... (Review and Giveaway)

Although I'm not generally a fan of instruction manuals when I get something new  -  you try and figure it out, fail miserably, swear it at and eventually read the book when you are really stuck,  I often thought how useful it would be if babies and toddlers were all born with some instructions. It turns out that I actually like to have instructions, at least the have a look at when you get stuck and many time I've resorted to Google for answers or advice  (before I started blogging and found twitter that is!) Now, I know all babies are not the same so everything I've learned with Leo will probably be completely useless when it comes to baby No.2.  So I was very pleased to receive a set of three 'What to expect' books What To Expect  - When You Are Expecting What To Expect - The First Year What To Expect - The Second Year When I was expecting Leo and in the days before I was surgically attached to my laptop I read a huge heap of 'baby books' from

The 500th post!

Welcome to my 500th blog post! My very first blog post  was way back on 17th September 2009, when I hit publish that day there was no-one to read it and I never imagined that I'd still be going all this time later with nearly 200 readers (that I know of) and more importantly still enjoying every second.    Having missed both my blog anniversaries when I noticed I was coming up to the 500th post I decided it couldn't go unmarked. I thought I'd take a little look back over the last couple of years and share some of my favourite bits with you - as I'm sure you weren't around in the begining (well, except you Mum!)  I started off slowly having no idea what I was doing, and rarely putting photos on my posts. I had no plan and knew nothing about blogging at all. I knew there were thousands of blogs out there but didn't realise there were lots of other 'Mum and expat bloggers'  or that some of them I would come to class as good friends of mine desp

Silent Sunday

First week at school - Update

On Monday , Leo had his first day at school, although not a complete disaster he didn't really enjoy it.  I think the main problem was that he didn't realise I was coming back for him! On Tuesday I made sure I explained before we left and again when we got to school that I was going to work (he understands that better than anything else) and I'd be back in an hour.  He was not happy and although he wanted to go he didn't want me to leave him.   His teacher took him and I gave him a quick kiss and said goodbye,  he was crying but was so sweet as he was also trying not to.  As I left I could hear his little cries and him saying 'I need my Mummy to stay here' Wednesday when I picked him up after 2 hours he seemed much happier, apparently they had given him a biscuit and a banana and that 'made me happy and not crying any more' He was very pleased to see me and showed me the other children, the teacher got them to wave and say bye, and he waved back sa

Shopping in Cyprus

I never thought of myself as a fan of shopping but as the saying goes 'You don't know what you've got till it's gone!'  One of the unexpected things I now miss about living in England is the shops, and most expats out here would probably say the same thing. Now I think about it, as long I was not having to buy shoes or a particular outfit I loved wandering up and down the high street.  Bookshops, 'gadget' shops, Primark, Wilkinsons and Woolworths (or whatever random shops has been occupying the old store for the last few years!)  and not just the high street shops - supermarkets which sold everything from clothes to toys, DVDs and household goods AND medicine (saving you having to go to a Pharmacy to buy some headache tablets).  The supermarkets here DO sell non-food items but I generally gave up looking at it when I first noticed a plain white baby sleepsuit on sale for €10 euro and promptly went into mourning for Asda multipacks and money off vouchers!

Flashback Friday - First day at school

This week as Leo went to nursery school for the first time I thought this would be a great photo choice for my Flashback Friday.... This was taken on my first day at Primary School, I don't remember that much about it but I do remember the photo being 'staged'  and my parents asking me to go to the end of the drive so it looked like I was going but Mum saying that it was pretend and she would be really taking me in a minute! I asked my Mum about the day and she said I was not impressed!  When the teacher rang the bell for class all the children, including me ran straight over to the teacher but I was the only one to run straight back to my Mum crying! She ended up being the only Mum to have to take their child inside where the head mistress plucked me out of her arms and told her 'You've had her for years, it's our job now' It took a week or so for me to go without a fight, to begin with Mum took me and settled me at my desk, then progressed to sa

Reasons to be Cheerful

This week despite the soaring heat (it's up in the high 30s now and that's fairly warm even if you are not 7 months pregnant!)  I'm still feeling cheerful.... 1. Leo has started nursery school -  I'm not sure this is something he's very cheerful about as he's had quite a lot of tears about it this week but we are on day 4 now and it's not THAT bad.  Although I obviously feel for him (and think it must be a huge thing for him - suddenly 5 days a week in school an everyone speaking Greek!) it's taken a huge weight off of my mind as I was really worried about him starting in September just after the baby arrives, I think that would have made it so much worse.  It also means I get a chance to rest a little bit before hand!  (she says writing a blog post while he is at school!) 2. I got Leo to wear his armbands in the swimming pool unlike last year where he refused  which means someone hasn't got to constantly hold him in our pool or worry that he m

First day at school

Yesterday, after much debate about which Nursery school to choose  Leo had his first taste of school!  After seeing the school and actually being shown around it unlike all the others I was quite happy at sending him.  I had been trying to prepare him as best I could and when we got up yesterday morning he was excited and raring to go. He kept saying he was excited about going to school like his friends which was good but I was a little concerned he thought he would be going WITH his friends (they all go to different ones) I didn't want to point that out though in case I upset him before we even left. When we arrived he walked in happily with me and Eleni, his teacher came out to great us, she bent straight down to his level with a happy 'Kalimera'  (Good Morning) and asked him his name.  Ever the friendly boy he replied 'Morning, My name is Leo, look at my new school bag, it's got Thomas on it' She asked him if he wanted to come and meet the other kids an

Flashback Friday theme - Week 15

Another fab Flashback Friday coming up this week...   This week the theme will be   New Start  - it can be anything you from your first day at school or a new job, a house move or a new relationship for example. As ever you can interpret this as you wish, and if you don't have a photo but would like to share a story then feel free to do that too!  It doesn't matter how far back you go - whether it's 10 months or 10 or 50 years, just take us back to a moment in time! The linky will open early Friday morning and will stay open until the following week. If you want to join in, write your post and come back on Friday to link up.   If you're linking up please visit as many of the other posts and see what they've come up with too. You can grab the code for the  badge to display on your post but the important part though is to come back and add your post to the linky, then visit some of the others for a lovely nostalgia fest! Grab my button and join in

The great nursery debate

I've been wanting to get Leo started in nursery school for a long time now, most of his similar age friends (he's the youngest by 6 months but they are all 3 years old now) have been going for almost a year and Leo often asked why he didn't go to school like his friends. The main reason he hasn't been is the cost, and as I'm not working we couldn't afford or justify sending him and paying so much money out each month.  Back in January I registered him at pre-school  and I was quite stressed about that as I had no idea how or where to go about doing it, and even once I had still had no clue if he actually had a place or when he might be starting, if I would drop him at the gate or take him inside etc. I eventually got a phone call a few weeks ago saying he would have a place in September but was still none the wiser as to a start date, I asked and they said they would ring me! The other thing that was now worrying me was the fact that he would be startin

Birth in Cyprus - Caesarean births

I'd heard that caesarean births are very common here in Cyprus and initially I was worried about having to have one when it might not be necessary. I have no problem at all if needed medically but would rather not unless it was unavoidable.  Here are two stories of C-sections which both happened to be at the Achillion Clinic in Limassol.  From the feedback I have received since asking for birth stories it still seems that more people choose to go private than use the General hospital, in many cases as if it's the only option?! Tara's Story - In response to your post, I had my son in 2008. I chose to go private as I had a strong dislike of the general hospital due to previous experiences, and as it was my first child I was naturally a bit scared and wanted to feel 100% looked after. The total cost including scans, check ups, blood tests, birth and hospital stay was nearly €5000. I had a c- section which is around €1000 more than natural birth. I didn't want to

Silent Sunday

20 Questions - Interview with a 3 year old.

I came across a great idea on Pinterest a while ago where you ask your child a series of questions each year on their birthday staring at age 3 and then you can see how their answers change over the years.  I asked him the questions over a few days as and when he decided to cooperate and answer them - to most of them the answer was first 'I don't know' which is what he responds to everything at the moment even if he knows so I had to try a few times to get an answer out of him! Now he keeps asking me the questions too! 1. What is your favourite colour?   Light blue (this changes each time you ask him!)  2. What is your favourite toy?       Thomas   (the tank engine)  3. What is your favorite fruit?   Grapes 4. What is your favourite tv show?   Thomas  5. What is your favourite thing to eat for lunch?   Ham and salad cream ( sandwiches )  6. What is your favorite outfit?     Boys will be boys (t-shirt, doesn't care which shorts!)  7. Wha

Flashback Friday - Young Love

Way back in the days before I discovered boys, popstar crushes and even Care bears I had my very first love..... Let me introduce you to Dumbo. Dumbo was my first love, he was my first toy and was certainly could not have been more loved!  He's still with us albeit a little worn and aged now, the photo above was taken only today. As a young child I slept with him under my arm every night, always the same arm which is why his trunk bends to the side, he has been around the world to Spain, and Malta on his holidays with us.  Over the years he has had a little bit of surgery at the very careful hands of my Mum and was always carefully hand washed (the washing machine would have made him feel sick!) and then given pride of place in the airing cupboard to dry, always sitting up and never squashed in between some random drying underwear. Although he spent many years relaxing as I stopped playing with toys he always had pride of place in my bedroom and came with me each time

29 week bump update

I've surprised myself with this pregnancy, I really thought  I'd keep more of a record of it that I have done so far now I blog so often. I had plans for lots and lots of photos as with Leo I only got a few at the end but in reality there just didn't seem a lot of point when there was not much of a bump.  I will definitely get some nearer the end though with Leo in them too. I've read many blogs with weekly or even monthly pregnancy updates since I started writing but it didn't really appeal to me, there just didn't seem to be much to say. No major problems, no interesting cravings, nothing that I could find to write about.  I'm not feeling as enthusiastic this time which hasn't helped. At 28 weeks with Leo I had already finished work (left early to avoid redundancy) and I had a nice 3 months shopping, relaxing, visiting friends and having lovely naps - maybe that's why I don't remember being as uncomfortable this early!  Oh, with no toddler

Flashback Friday Theme Week 14

Just to get you all prepared for another fab Flashback Friday and give you a heads up on this weeks theme.. I've brought back themes as the linky seemed to be more popular with them. You don't HAVE to follow the theme though - I love a bit of nostalgia so it would still be great if you fancy joining in with your own flashback. Maybe this week brings back a certain memory or you just fancy reliving a certain moment in time?   This week the theme is  Young Love - it can be anything you from your first boyfriend, favourite cuddly toy or something you had a real passion for in your youth. Or even relating to other family members - did your Grandparents have a brilliant love story for example? As ever you can interpret this as you wish, and if you don't have a photo but would like to share a story then feel free to do that too!  It doesn't matter how far back you go - whether it's 10 months or 10 or 50 years, just take us back to a moment in time! The linky wi

Maternicare Pre & Post-natal cream (Review)

When I was pregnant with Leo I religiously applied a pregnancy moisturising oil day and night for the whole 9 months, and towards the end sometimes even in the middle of the day too!  I know everyone says that if you are destined for stretch marks there is nothing you can do to stop them but I was determined to give it a good try!. It almost worked, I didn't actually get any stretch marks appear until the last week - another good reason why I don't like being late for things, if he'd been on time I would have escaped them! This time round in the same way that my clothes seemed to shrink the minute I wee'd on a stick, the original stretch marks seemed to jump out at me and this did not seem like a good sign for the next 9 months. So when I was offered the opportunity to try out Maternicare's Pre and Post Natal Moisturising Cream I jumped at the chance. Their moisturising cream is  a blend of rich plant oils and essential vitamins developed especially to nour

Silent Sunday

Flashback Friday - A right Royal Knees up!

Ever since I can remember I've always been interested in the Royal family. At the age of 3 I attended a playgroup street party although I don't really remember it and it wasn't really until Prince Andrew married Sarah that I started to pay an interest. I used to really enjoy collecting all the newspaper cuttings about them and making them into a scrapbook!  Although I got over that childhood hobby I've still enjoyed reading about the Royals and watching all the big events on TV, last year I was very envious of those in the UK while William and Kate got married although we did get to see it here. It seems like everyone in England has got Royal fever at the moment - although I do wonder if that's just am impression I'm getting online. I know many people are not at all interested but I love all the pomp and circumstance! I'd love to arrange or go to a proper street party, although I bet that none of them will be quite like they were back in the day...