Friday, 31 January 2014
Thursday, 30 January 2014
Wednesday, 29 January 2014
Tuesday, 28 January 2014
I look back with fondness on the memory of getting my first proper watch. It was new technology as my parents got me a digital watch a bit like this one:
Monday, 27 January 2014
The nice people at Just Singles have challenged a few of us single bloggers to try and get ourselves 3 dates in the next 3 months! They appreciate it how hard it can be as a single parent to get out dating so they want us to try 3 different methods - 1 each month - to see if any of them bear fruit.
First up I will be making use of the free membership they have given us on their site. A chance to browse the selection of fellas who are looking for the right woman! There do seem to be quite a variety to chat with online and maybe meet up with...
For the second month I'm planning on seeing if a 1 month gym membership at a local gym can produce anything other than a slimmer more toned me! I will have to go and check out a couple of the choices of gym first though to see which one I fancy trying....
The question is what to try for month 3? If you have any constructive ideas as to where the nice available men hang out in South Lakeland then let me know! Maybe on a one day course or a beer festival or an art exhibition - I need your inspiration...
Saturday, 25 January 2014
Did you know Usborne Books offers a Reading Programme that fits in with the National Curriculum Book banding?
Check out what we can offer you through the scheme.
|One of the available books|
Our Very First Reading section alone, offers 26 titles.
Remember with Usborne we can also offer up to 60% free books too, so we really can stretch those budgets, and if you have already exhausted your budgets how about letting us tell you all about our Ready Steady Read programmes where we can gets lots of lovely new books into your school for FREE.
Should you wish to see a full catalogue or just find out a little more information, please e-mail me with your questions.
We are continually expanding our exposure in schools and would sincerely like to help with your literacy requirements.
Friday, 24 January 2014
Nice to have been put into print!
Thursday, 23 January 2014
Wednesday, 22 January 2014
This week I wasn't tempted to drink alcohol and was happy with my booze free beer. Bit bored of being stuck with one beverage though so may need to get more variety for the last week and a bit.
As for exercise it was a relief to be able to get out on Friday after not being able to run much earlier in the week due to illness of one or other of us. Not only did I manage 10 km in the rain but I ran the fastest official one too:
That made up for getting wet! At the weekend I had to squeeze in some mini runs with my son as we went out and about:
Better a little bit with a total of 5km than nothing. On Monday I did my first Staveley to Kendal run for a while. I added a loop around the village first to extend the distance. My leg was niggling at me but I thought that was just the cold and thought I could run it off as I went along:
I did manage to complete the 10 km in my second best time but unfortunately I've been limping ever since.. So that's no run today then. Just hope its recovered in time for Friday though I doubt it. Onwards and slimwards next week...
Tuesday, 21 January 2014
As regular readers know I like to focus on the positive things in life especially with the reasons to be cheerful linky that I now co-host. To boost this I've joined in with 100 days of happy to try to post a photo of something that's made me happy each day. Here is what I've done so far:
A new 10km official personal best
The latest in one of my favourite book series:
A glimpse of blue sky:
A good run:
A beautiful sun rise:
Why don't you try?
Monday, 20 January 2014
1) First up a Christmas present introducing me to a new fantasy author:
The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The opening book in a series so it has to establish the main characters and the background to the plot. Had me finding it hard to put down at times despite the high body count. Leaves me wanting to go out and get the next one to find out what happens next..
2) Then revisiting an old favourite but in audio form from audible:
The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I have always loved this book and having listened to one Discworld CD I was keen to start using my Audible account to get more. Great story but not as keen on Nigel Planer as narrator..
3) Next the latest in a children's fantasy series:
The House of Hades by Rick Riordan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
We have been waiting to see what would happen after Percy and Annabeth fell into Tarturus after defeating Arachnae and saving the Athena Parthenos. The 5 remaining demi gods and a satyr on Argo II must get to Greece and the House of Hades to reach the Gates of Death. They hope to stop Gaia releasing more monsters into the world and save Percy and Annabeth. They will each have to learn how to harness their various talents and powers in order to succeed as they battle a range of monsters and gods whilst meeting some intriguing allies.
Meanwhile Percy and Annabeth have to safely cross Tarturus facing enemies old and new plus an unexpected appearance from an old adversary turned friend... Will they make it to the Doors of Death...
Plenty of fascinating mythology, battles plus each individual has plenty of story to keep you reading. Another ending leaving us waiting until October 2014! Great part 4 of the series.
4) I waited to spend my birthday book token in the sales to get the latest book from one of my favourite historical fiction authors:
The Pagan Lord by Bernard Cornwell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Uhtred is a far from ideal hero but he always stands up for his adopted kingdom even after he has been exiled and threatened with execution.
This part of the series covers a huge swathe of what is now England from Bamburgh (Bebbanburg) in Northumbria across to Chester, down to Gloucester and London. Facing his old enemies Cnut and Siggurd, the uncle who stole Bebbanburg from him and angry Christians in Wessex it's another epic story.
A great insight into history in the dark ages. Plenty of minor skirmishes and then a huge battle at the end - it's not a book for the squeamish.
Cornwell is a marvellous story teller and this is another brilliant book. Can't wait for book 8!
5) A browse in the fantasy section of the library to find something new:
Drakenfeld by Mark Charan Newton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This book is an intriguing mix of fantasy and murder mystery. Lucan is summoned back to his home city following the death of his father. He replaces him as the local agent for the Sun Chamber. He finds his birthplace much changed from when he left it.
Summoned to investigate a royal murder he is also being attacked by local villains. With a rising body count he must solve the murder before someone kills him.
There were plenty of twists in this book and I enjoyed reading it. The last few chapters don't seem quite as well written as the rest of the book though.
6) My daughter loves having some proper books at bedtime so we enjoyed this one together:
Demon Dentist by David Walliams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Another brilliant book by David Walliams. Loved reading it to my daughter at bedtime.
Had us laughing at times and scared at others. Why does know one believe the children that the new dentist is a witch?
A bitter sweet comedy that runs you through a gamut of emotions. Some great characters and once again with Raj the newsagent.
7) I realised that I hadn't read the last Game of Thrones paperback and it didn't take me long to make up for lost time:
A Dance with Dragons: After the Feast by George R.R. Martin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Great to realise that you hadn't quite finished the most recent book in a series! This one has strands relating to all the main surviving characters.
Jon Snow at the Wall dealing with the conflicting needs of the Black Watch, the wildlings and King Stannis. Stannis himself facing harsh weather in his attempt to take Winterfell and free the girl they believe is Arya Stark. The real Arya still in the house of the god of many faces and learning their ways. Theon Greyjoy battling his internal demons and his fear of the Bastard of Bolton.
Down at King's Landing Cersei is being held on charges of fornication and treason as is Margarey. The power struggle round young King Tommen will claim more victims yet. His uncle Jaime and Brienne are searching for Sansa Stark who is masquerading as Littlefingers daughter.
Over the sea will Daenerys marry for passion or politics and master her dragons? Tyrion is now a slave so how can he regain his freedom. Other kingdoms send their princes to claim the hand of the dragon queen. Meanwhile is the true heir Aegon returning to the 7 kingdoms with a company of exiled mercenaries.
Lots more blood and intrigue in this story. Plenty of twists and turns. And we have to wait over a year to find out what happens next!
View all my reviews
Saturday, 18 January 2014
Friday, 17 January 2014
When I was first given my iPad it came with a protective case and stand. Unfortunately this case fell apart when the silicon edge became unattached from the rigid back. This left me with a very vulnerable iPad... So when I was offered a chance to review the Slick Grip 5-in-1 tablet case I immediately said Yes.
Unfortunately before it arrived there was an accident and the iPad slipped from my son's hands and smashed:
So off it went to be mended which cost me £45... ouch..
Luckily the day it was fixed the Slick Grip arrived:
At £29.99 this would have been cheaper than the repair job! The silicon case's Shockproof grip is easy to hold for my son (I'm not risking testing the dropping...):
We also loved the Amplify feature which made watching movies and TV a much better experience:
A great feature for me is that the iPad can now stand upright on its own. This means that when I am doing the washing up it fits on the window sill and I can watch a TV programme. It is very stable and I was never worried that it was going to topple over into the sink..
If you flip the iPad round then the case angles perfectly for typing. In fact I was going to write this review on it but my son has stolen the iPad to play a game on....
- Tough silicone case for iPad 2/3/4, iPad Mini, Kindle Fire HD 7″ and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″
- Built-in ‘VIBE Sound Booster’ amplifier, requires no batteries.
- All ports, buttons, sensors and cameras remain accessible.
- Stand tablet in landscape orientation, perfect for watching video.
- Non-slip, high quality silicone case feels great in hand.
- Provides an ideal angle for typing, surfing and working.
- Air filled pockets for enhanced protection against shocks and drops.
Thursday, 16 January 2014
Gosh so many link ups last week which was wonderful. So glad lots of people are starting 2014 so full of positivity. Here are my reasons to be cheerful this week:
1) The beautiful county of Cumbria
This weekend I got to see this county looking especially stunning. I loved sharing some of this on my Silent Sunday and some other posts this week. But I have to share another one:
2) Walking to and from work
I have been turning the disadvantage of major roadworks in town into an excuse to walk to and from work. I have had some beautiful views of the river Kent on the way and the children seem to have enjoyed our walks to. In fact my son got upset tonight when I said we were in the car!
3) A night at the panto
It was our annual trip to the Burneside panto on Friday. This local group always puts on a good traditional show with some very funny lines and audience interaction. We all had a lot of fun watching Cinderella and can't wait to see what they do next year! My daughter loved getting an autograph from Steven Hall of Britain's Got Talent fame. No photos allowed in the theatre during the show, so this is the best I could do:
4) Overcoming fears
Since we got guinea pigs at the end of half term my son has been petrified of holding his one Bubble, he hated him scurrying around. This weekend we had a major break through and he held Bubble on his lap:
5) Return of my iPad
My son accidentally dropped and shattered my iPad before Christmas and I had to get it repaired. Having it back this week was just wonderful. And in a timely fashion we received an iPad case to review too:
What is making you smile this week?