I don’t feel cheerful but I know it is important to force a smile!

I have got the glums partly brought on by the lack of enthusiasm for my weight loss by the GP yesterday. I know it is stupid to let people set me back like that but I always take these things to heart.

I am having a rum and coke to cheer myself up – feels most odd as have not had a drink for weeks.

1. Last weekend, we had a lovely day out in Dorset including a ferry ride and a trip to Corfe Castle. What a lovely find and we will be back.

2. I have reached out to people and now have 2 social events in the diary and others to firm up. Who knew?

3. My husband is getting a bonus at work – small probably but shows his work is going OK with is a relief.

4. Despite having the blues yesterday and today, I have not indulged in comfort eating.

5. My husband has promised me FUN this weekend. He is researching things for us to do as we speak so all the signs are good. He knows how I get so bored sometimes.

6. I may well cook up a storm for Valentine’s Day tomorrow.

7. We or should I say Him Indoors sorted out a troubling financial issue.

8. I have my new to me £10 sofa exactly where I want it.

9. I am hoping to sort out my daughter’s room this weekend and to get her new bed installed.

10. You see, life is not so bad really.

I am feeling a cheerful mum today.


1. We have got a quote to mend our poorly car and it is not too daunting price wise.

2. When the car proved itself poorly, I refused to get in it. Him Indoors said it was safe to drive but I stood my ground and said I would not go in it or let the children in it until it was fixed. Heard myself sounding very assertive and liked that sound. I don’t have to do anything I am uncomfortable with.

3. When Him Indoors has complained about my housework I have just converted that into humour on social networks. Makes me feel much better. Did I ever claim to be a domestic goddess?

4. My son is going on a trip to a university next week to build up his German skills. I had a telephone call from his teacher who spoke in a lovely way about how wonderful my son is both in terms of getting to grips with a new language and behaviour.

5. I did a calculation today and worked out I have lost over 12 per cent of my weight in just over 2 months. That must surely make a bit of a difference on the prediabetes front.

6. I measured myself today and have lost 1 inch from my waist, 1 inch from my tummy and 2 and half inches off my hips in just one week. I have never felt so motivated and positive about losing weight.

7. I am enjoying being part of the Thinking Slimmer focus group and getting to know other women losing weight. I am also enjoying people linking up to Muffin Top Monday as we all offer support as we shed those pounds and stones.

8. I am enjoying my daughter’s approach to home education. She likes it when we do things together but also gets on proactively with things in her own time too. She is very creative and interested in storytelling, art and film-making.

9. After an anxiety attack, I am starting to seek support about my youngest son and how best to support him educationally at home. I am learning to allow for the fact that yes he can learn from video games. Today we discussed coding, characterisation and plot using video games as a hook. I need to meet him where he is at instead of making it all so pressured for him and myself.

10. I had a lot of support from home educators as I questioned my abilities this week. They are good at giving emotional and practical support.

11. We are talking about possibilities for holidays and suddenly it seems possible we can manage some foreign travel as a family.

12. I am getting more organised with my time.

13. I seem to have more energy

14. I seem able to relax better

15. I proactively reached out to an online friend regarding meeting up.

16. Him Indoora and my teenage son got a prize in the pub quiz.

17. I have had a few exciting emails with invitations and also giving me the opportunity to help others.

18. I think I am OK – this has taken a while.

I have started a weekly linky where I blog about learning at home and encourage others to do the same. This is open to any parent blogger those who have pre-schoolers, those who have children in school and those who home-educate.

learning at home

I am currently home-educating my 9 year old son and 10 year old daughter. My 14 year old son attends a local secondary school. As he starts working out what he wants to focus on in the future, I hope to support him more with his learning at home at weekends and in the evenings.

I have come up with some questions to help me structure my posts but you should feel free to link up any post related to learning at home and in its widest sense too (cookery, arts and crafts, gardening, literacy, numeracy, ICT< history, science, design, life lessons, languages, music, religions and more) 1. How we are feeling?

My daughter is feeling enthusiastic about learning at home. My son is reluctant this week and this is getting me down a bit. I am not sure I have the key to making him keen. There are so many distractions in the home particularly video games.

2. What have I enjoyed most this week?

I have certainly enjoyed listening to my daughter. She has some strong views and is not afraid of expressing them. I think this is a very good thing. I enjoyed snuggling up with my son and talking about the human body particularly about growing bones.

3. What has my daughter enjoyed most this week?

She tells me she enjoyed Aesop’s fables most this week.

4. What has my son enjoyed most his week?

Video games! Lord save me from video games!! He did enjoy sharing his knowledge about the human body and laughed loudly when I mispronounced “micro-organisms”.

5. What is my daughter’s proudest achievement this week?

She says opening a box and trying out a Gravity Defying Puzzle.

6. What is my son’s proudest achievement?

Knowing a lot already about the human body particularly the ear.

7. What are our challenges?

I am now feeling fine about home-educating my daughter as she is keen to get involved and to try ideas. My son is more strong-willed and more challenging as he knows exactly what he wants to do but I want to broaden his horizons and ensure he is equipped for a positive future. I feel very isolated with this task and not at all sure I will find the key to ensuring he enjoys learning. He is so very bright. Perhaps that is part of the issue but I am not a trained teacher and I just don’t know what to do. Pushing him causes arguments but I don’t think leaving him entirely to his own devices is right either.

8. What resources have we found particularly helpful this week?

Maths Antics

Potato Council – we have sent for a potato-growing kit

A Baker Ross arts and crafts bundle

9. Top outing of the week

A trip to the local town and a Jenga game. We were supposed to go to see another home educating family but that fell through due to a poorly car.

10. What are some of our plans for the next week?

I still feel I need to plan more to reduce my anxiety levels.

I am hoping to find a good way to talk about the Holocaust with the children.

More Aesop’s fables.

Moving through videos on percentages at a good rate.

Incorporate more music and poetry into our days.

My daughter wants to learn more about sewing.

My son wants to learn more about Iceland.

I do hope you share your learning at home because I think a real truth is that we can all be inspired by and learn from each other

I certainly have a lot to learn.

IMG_2659Here is our week in pictures.

Day 1.

My daughter teaches me (or attempts to) Scratch. She explained things so clearly and made a presentation on circles following our geometry lesson. She showed an eye for design and an ability to work out the needs of different audiences.


Day 2

Storage is so exciting once you become a parent because it is so essential. This gets worse when you start home-educating so we are investing in these pink boxes that are a bargain at just five pounds and slide under the bed and out of sight nicely.


Day 3

It is always a fun day when our Baker Ross parcel full of arts and crafts goodies arrives. My daughter likes nothing better than crafting.


Day 4

I am making great progress on the decluttering front as proven by the fact that the cat can now sit in this drawer!


Day 5

I bought this postcard showing bloggers of yesteryear on a seaside trip. Nice to find it as part of the deluttering process. Perfect outfits for blogging conferences.


Day 6

You know you are committed to healthy eating when the family have a pizza and you stick with trout.


Day 7

Got up early for the thrill of seeing frost on the car windscreen. Funny what you miss when you move from Up North.


We have not being out in the fresh air as much as I would have liked this week. This means we have got lots done indoors but I hope next week’s pictures show some exciting expeditions out in the big wide world.

Linking up with The Boy and Me blog where you will find other superb weeks and lives in pictures.

I held off doing this today as I wanted to be able to report number one in a truthful way.


1. I have just completed a Fat Burner workout with Davina. I am obese and the 7 minutes was enough to get my heart pumping but not too daunting either. Plus as my daughter joined me I reckon that is our Physical Education sorted for today.

2. We got to payday after Christmas – always a good feeling.

3. My teenager has not made a friend to go out with at weekends since we moved last April. This weekend he is going out with a new best friend. This makes me cheerful as does anything which gets him away from the Xbox One.

He also did not go to a detention because he felt it was an unjust detention. I think he has a point but warned him actions tend to have consequences.

He also got a bad grade in RS for the first time ever because the subject was abortion. He tells me he did not really feel comfortable writing about it as he does not like the idea of it but respects that it is a very personal matter. His thoughtfulness again makes me smile.

2. My daughter is enjoying learning about Ireland. When I asked why, she said it is because she knows I am Irish and wanted to find out more about our country of heritage.

She also reports that she is enjoying eating toast.

Today she was delighted to receive a parcel full of amazing Baker Ross arts and craft materials.

3. My youngest son has reconnected with some old friends from Yorkshire. This has brought about such big smiles. He also had fun researching Icelandic rivers with his Dad and I enjoyed seeing them working together.

4. My husband has news of a tax refund today.

5. The cats are settling in so we are having lots of snuggles. They are at the vet as I write having their microchips done.

6. As for me, I am pleased to have set up two new linky things this week one on weight loss and one on learning at home. Please spread the word if you can as both involve parents supporting each other.

I am still eating healthily.

I am putting systems in place to manage my time more effectively.

I had good contact with a very old friend and she made me feel better about something that has bugged me for years. It is awful when people make out like you made something up and you know in your heart it is true. Nice to have it confirmed as fact by someone who was there and who I can trust to tell me the truth.

8. I am breaking out of the comfort zone at the weekend and going to visit another home education family. Scary but may lead to something lovely.

So on the whole a positive week.

How was yours?