Monday, 15 October 2018

24th September - 14th October

I've not been around much as things have been busy plus S was off school for one day not well, G had a birthday and then I managed to catch a bug which had been doing the rounds at work.

So from the past few weeks I have been 

Wearing - brooches to go along with the theme of the day. 
There was the Coca-Cola can for Crush a Can Day

and this strawberry for Strawberry Cream Pie Day.

Reading - the next book from the Maisie Dobbs series. This is the one I have enjoyed least so far. I have the next couple on my book shelf and the later ones are on my Christmas wish list. G is aware!

Enjoying - messing about with a fake felt beard for Lumberjack Day
My mum and sisters were coming over and so I asked them to wear their best check shirt and we each had our photo taken whilst modelling the beard.
A few days before hand it had been Elephant Appreciation Day so we went out in the garden and played the Elephant Game. 

Watching - talented people at the theatre. My birthday present to my friend T was tickets to see Women In Power. It's a new production, a collaboration by some very well known women and we were thoroughly entertained by the fabulous cast who acted, sung, played instruments and danced non stop for 90 minutes. 
The second trip was with G and some friends to see Austentatious. Each night the performance is different as each performance is improvised by the cast. They had us in stitches and I would thoroughly recommend going to see them if you ever get the chance.

Loving - that Rocky is settling in so well and finding his own favourite places. This was where he liked to settle down a few weeks ago. Lately he has made the top of the freezer his own, he likes to keep and eye on us and he is quite close to where we store his food!

Buying - little china treats from TK Maxx. I went in to look at the Halloween offerings and was very restrained and just bought one little bowl. 
Just the right size for chocolate based treats.
I was unable to resist adding to my mug collection with this slightly wibbly wobbly one. With the stars and Joy decoration it does have a festive flavour but, I will admit now that it hasn't been stashed away to be used later, it's been used daily since purchase as a little Joy everyday is a good thing I think.

Doing - a jigsaw. I found this one whilst having a tidy up. I think it was one of G's stocking filler gifts.
It's made up of 250 pieces and so G and I raced through it in no time at all and it's now sat in a bag ready for the charity shop.
The theme is sweets from the 1970s and although there were lots of things we recognised there were also quite a few we didn't.

Visiting - an exhibition named We March On all about the history of Southampton Football Club. I'm not footie fan but I still found it all very interesting. The Saints are G' team and so we went to see this on his birthday.

Wondering - if this is really what I look like? To mark World Egg Day a plan was hatched(!) between me and my colleagues that we would each decorate an egg in our likeness. Due to being unwell last week I completely forgot about it until a colleague sent me a picture of hers the night before we were due to take them in. I was feeling tired and not at all in the crafting mood but felt like I should make the effort. I'm glad I did, we all had a giggle and it made our Friday a quite eggscellent day.

Monday, 24 September 2018

17th - 23rd September

This week I have been 

Listening -  to Second Thoughts on Radio 4 extra as I walk to and from work. I loved the series which ITV made although I have no recollection of the series Faith in the Future which followed on from it. 

Cooking - more new recipes. The syn free carbonara was a hit with all of us.
Yes I can confirm the rare occurrence of us all eating and enjoying the same meal did happen once this week.
On Thursday I cooked Chinese lemon chicken and left Asian BBQ chicken marinading in the fridge on Friday morning for G to cook for him and S. You can tell he dished up this meal, look at the amount of chicken on his plate!
Both were given the thumbs up and will definitely appear on the new menus. All can be found on the slimming eats website which I thoroughly recommend.

Thinking - about organising a family outing just before Christmas to see the new Mary Poppins movie. I love Mary Poppins and am so excited about seeing the new movie. 

Wearing - lots more scarves this week due to the change in the weather. Plus the one which was called into action to help us with our latest sleeveface creation for country music day last Monday.

Feeling - so pleased for working my way through a huge to do list this weekend. With G working, the weather being rubbish and S full of cold and staying in her PJs I had no choice but to be indoors and so used the time to get lots of little bits and pieces done.

Watching - the return of Strictly. I'm ready for this year's competition to commence and once again become immersed in all the glitter and sequins.

Monday, 17 September 2018

10th - 16th September

This past week I have been

Listening - to the cricket and hearing Alistair Cook's final innings for England. The test series between England and India this summer made for such thrilling listening and it was made all the more entertaining by the sensational TMS team.

Wearing - a new to me blouse. Bought at the car boot for £1.00 this pretty lightweight long sleeve blouse is perfect for layering on these not quite summer, not quite autumn days.

Spending - a CK voucher I was given for my birthday last year. Can't believe this stayed unspent for so long when there are so many things I love in that shop. But then maybe that's the reason, just what to spend it on when there is so much I'd like. I finally plumped for this sailing boat bag.
Loving the look of disdain on Rocky's face as I use him to model it for me!

Going -  on a night away to Weymouth. This little trip was part of my birthday gift from G. 
G had booked us into a lovely Air BnB property which was a 10 minute stroll from the centre of town. 
As we walked along the front we looked at all the hotels and BnBs on offer. Some places looked very unappealing, dead flowers in plant pots and plastic woodland creatures stuck to walls were two of the things which did not enhance the kerb appeal and then others had little touches like this bunting hanging over threshold and it just made the world of difference.

Feeling - nostalgic for holidays of my childhood when we came across this row of holiday chalets. Love the very CK colours they have been painted in.

Eating - ice cream from Rossi's. I chose the natural flavour whilst G went for the peppermint and chocolate chip. So light and creamy. Delish.

Cooking - on Thursday I cooked a chicken curry using coconut yogurt for the sauce instead of coconut milk and as both G and S liked it that's one new recipe which will find it's place in the new weekly menu. G has lost another 5lb this week and there are many more new recipes still to try.

Walking - around Weymouth trying to see as much as possible during our weekend stay. The area around the harbour was very picturesque.

Hoping - the car was going to pass it's MOT but knowing that it was quite unlikely.
We will now be on the look out for a new one.

Reading - Five Quarters of the Orange. Another Joanne Harris book which did not disappoint. I wasn't sure I was going to like this one but in the end I couldn't put it down and so having lots of train travelling time was a real help.

Monday, 10 September 2018

1st-9th September

This week I have been 

Reading - a Lidl magazine which was posted through the door. Liking the look of these cookie based bats for Halloween.

Cooking - a couple of new things. This turkey chilli was a huge hit and will definitely be made again. G has joined Slimming World and has lost 5lb in his first week. I'm in the process of working out weekly menu plans.

Feeling - proud and anxious on S's first day of the new academic year.

That first morning S was up before me and had a big smile on her face.
She wasn't quite as happy to be called out of bed the rest of the week!
Due to the problems she has had over the past year I was feeling more than a little anxious as the week progressed but I'm thrilled to say all went well.

Drinking - tea from my new teapot and cup.
T rang me on his way home from work. He is back working for a charity and is busy driving to different shops covering for staff holidays in other local branches.
He said he had bought me something he thought I would like. 
'I think you'll like it, it's a bit odd, but I think it's your kind of thing,' he said.
I like it very much and was really very touched that he thought of buying it for me.

Wondering - if it's too early to add the pumpkins to the mantle along with the toadstools.

Loving - my bargain Emma Bridgewater bat mug. Found in a local sale for 50p.

Watching - Strictly Come Dancing to see who got paired up with who and how they all performed in that first team dance. 

Visiting - a windmill for Open Heritage weekend.

This windmill is just a 5 minute drive away from us and yet we've never taken S here. When we got there they were conducting tours but we had just missed the start of one so we wandered off to a stroll in the woods. When we got back the sails were turning and the tours had ended so we sat and enjoyed watching the windmill in motion whilst sipping hot chocolate.

Enjoying - crossing a couple of jobs off the long to do list. I painted the skirting board in the bathroom so now we are one step closer to getting the flooring down and having a room finished. Such a good feeling.

Thursday, 30 August 2018


So here we are at the end of August. 
Just another couple of days left before that first day of school feeling hits and S stands by our front door for the traditional photo shoot and heads off on the start of a new academic year.

The weather has been good during the summer break. S has been out and about meeting up with friends at local parks, she's been to the cinema a couple of times, mooched around town, been trampolining, met my mum for lunch, had friends to stay and gone on a sleepover.
Plus in the middle of the holidays we had our own holiday when we took the Eurostar to Belgium.

I have well and truly fallen out of the blogging habit this month which is a shame as it meant I have missed the 10th anniversary of when I started recording our lives here at Jumble and Jelly. Although I don't post as regularly now as I did when the children were younger I can't imagine stopping because it's so lovely having a record of us and the things we do.

I am borrowing an idea I have seen on Pinterest and decided to write a round up of August using a series of prompts. An idea I can see me taking forward into the next decade of blogging.

This month I have been


A French Affair by Katie Fforde. I took this away with me and read most of it on the train journey to and from Brussels. I wanted something which would be light and easy to read and I thought the title was very apt seeing as we had to travel through France.

How did it take me until I was 50 to read this book. I loved it. L-O-V-E-D it.


Serendipity, a fluffy rom com with John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale as 18th August was Serendipity Day.

and Forgetting Sarah Marshall as it was Mila Kunis' birthday on 14th August.


To make a jelly in a seaside sandcastle bucket for Sandcastle Day. 
But the darn thing didn't fully set and ended up a quivering heap on the plate!


I made lemon rice pudding meringue as a nod to Lemon Juice Day.
I made S some macaroni cheese and bacon sandwiches.
I also made honeycomb lasagne and ham and mustard hash. The lasagne will be making another appearance but the hash won't as although G liked this S didn't.


We made sure we included raspberries in our picnic lunch in Antwerp as this was the closest we could get for Raspberries and Cream Day.

Belgian fries. G liked them, S and I weren't that fussed. But the waffles. Well what can I say, we all loved those.


Watermelon Day was on 3rd August and so I made sure to have some in to make a smoothie with it. I know this should probably be obvious because of it's name but I didn't enjoy it in a smoothie as it made it too, well, watery!


Silly things with my lovely daughter. It may not look it in this photo but she was laughing as much as me and G whilst we were posing for this!


To Belgium. We stayed in Brussels and had day trips to Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges. We had a great time and I would thoroughly recommend a trip to Belgium to anyone considering it. 

One evening a couple of weeks ago we met up with some with friends and we took ourselves off to a local green where we enjoyed fish and chips for our tea. Their younger children played with S and we sat around chatting about this and that. A perfect way to unwind after a day at work and spend a relaxing summers evening.

On a great clue solving day out to Lymington. The treasure trail took us around the town as we worked our way through the puzzles. We got the answer wrong, but we didn't care as we had great fun trying to solve the mystery.



Let me introduce you to the latest member of our family.
He's 18 months old and needed a new home. How could we resist?
He was already named Rocky and of course we had to keep it but within a day or so we were calling him Rocky Road. Due to the fact he is always around your feet, especially when you are trying to walk down the stairs he is now being called Rocky Road Trip Hazard.


Annoyed is how I was feeling a week or so ago after I discovered that now S's school will only allow girls to wear on of two 'official' style skirts I am expected to pay out £22.50 to purchase one.
The reason this new school uniform rule is being introduced is because other girls were wearing skirts which were too short and didn't comply with the rules. So now the school have decided that all girls have to wear one of the skirts they deem as acceptable. Never mind that many girls did wear skirts which were within the uniform guidelines. It makes me so cross.


A dress which matched S's drink

and a bottle green scarf in homage of Word Scout Scarf Day.


This month marked the 10th anniversary of when we lost our dearest Dad. It feels utterly impossible that so long has passed since then. I still miss his dreadfully but will ever be thankful that he was my Dad.


If I would find a lion suitable to photograph on World Lion Day and then finding this smiling face on a door not far from the apartment we were staying in.


I bought this Shaky album for 1 Euro whilst we were in Ghent. Bargain I'd say.
We used the cover for this year's take on Vinyl Record Day.
And in case you are wondering, yes that's me knelt against the washing line support in our back garden.

Although it hasn't happened as yet, in actual fact we're off to it tomorrow evening, G and I will be listening and warbling away when we go to Sing Along with Grease. Can't wait, what a way to end the month.

Sunday, 19 August 2018


Seeing as my 50th birthday was nearly one month ago now, it's about time I took the time to tell you all about the incredible presents which G gave me.
This post has taken quite a bit of time to assemble, but no where near the amount of time it took G to assemble the gifts.

It all started with a large box.
It's all just a bit of fun G said to me.
Nestled inside amongst a lot of shredded paper were the presents.
They were all tagged and had to be opened in a specific order as G had bought gifts representing (mostly each 21st July) from 1968 when I was born until my 16th birthday in 1984.

1968- the song which was No 1 in charts on the day I was born. Des O'Connor and I Pretend.

The Sunday Times Magazine, printed with my birth date. I love the photo on the front and hope to get this framed.

1969- when the world was glued to the TV and radio listening for updates on the moon landing I was having my first birthday. I now have a copy of the Daily Telegraph from when I was one. As you may know we like a good jigsaw here and this one we will save and be doing on the 50th anniversary of the moon landing next year.

1970- Number one on my 2nd birthday was In the Summertime

and where better to spend it than the beach so we have a night away to look forward to!

1971- A bit of glam rock with T-Rex at number 1 on my 3rd birthday

and just look at the main article highlight in this paper printed on my birthday!!

1972- He was bound to show up sooner or later, number one on my 4th birthday was Donny Osmond.

1973- G chose to go with number 1 in the album chart for this year because of the David Essex link and so I now have a copy of That'll Be The Day along with the Look In magazine also showing the date of my 5th birthday.

1974- I cried so much when I opened this Simplicity dressmaking pattern book. Although it isn't from 1974 it's what this represents which is so important to me.
When we were little my 2 sisters and I would spend hours upon hours cutting up old editions of these catalogues. We would use these 'cut outs' to play beauty contests with. So many memories. G said this took such a long time to track down as they are quite hard to find. I'm so glad he was able to find this one. A very special gift indeed and I cried an awful lot.

1975- Oh how I loved the Bay City Rollers. G bought this satin scarf off of a lady who stitched it together the night before she went to see them play live back in the 70s. Along with the scarf I also now have the single which was number one on my 7th birthday and the July edition of the Rollers magazine.
I should also mention here that later on in the day I found out that my sister's are taking me to see the band play live! The only original member of the Rollers in the band these days is Les but I don't mind about that, I'm just so excited!

1976- More David Essex, let's face it, you can never have too much! 

1977- When I was little and given money to spend on holiday I would always buy as many of these magazines as I could.
Debbie, Bunty, Mandy and Judy. I would read them over and over again and try and copy the illustrations.
I can even remember the smell of the paper.
Again there was more tears as they evoked so many happy times from my childhood.

 1978- I loved Grease from the very first second I saw it on the screen at the cinema. As well as You're The One That I Want, number one on my 10th birthday, G bought me this picture of Sandy and Danny singing that song surrounded by original film cells from the movie.
Plus very soon we are both off to a Sing Along A Grease Movie night. G said he wouldn't mind if I wanted to take a friend, but he's the one that I want so he's coming with me!

1979- a copy of the Radio Times for 21st July 1979 would have cost you 14p. What a bargain.

1980- the gift for1980 is so unusual. This badge was bought by someone who went to the 1980 Moscow Olympics as a souvenir. This was the year the USA boycotted the games.

1981- My love for Shaky had taken a hold by this time. He was Number 1 with Green Door on my 13th birthday.
G bought the badge from a chap whose job it was to promote Shaky's album.

1982- The newspaper headline from my birthday this year is one we would much rather forget.
The Number 1 album is one which I heard played many, many times as it was a firm favourite of T's, my best friend at school.

1983- Wham and Smash Hits. Staples of this time in my teenage years. Wham takes me right back in an instant to Monday nights dancing at the Top Rank. I couldn't ask for a better Number 1 album.

1984- Here we finish off with a Jackie Magazine published on my 16th birthday

and these two items of clothing which actually belonged to me and I used to wear!
Apparently G consulted my sisters and T, my best friend from school, to help him in his gift quest. During a conversation with T she told him that during the early 90s I had lent her this pink jacket and trousers as she and a friend were going to a 1980s fancy dress party. Her friend was a similiar size to me but had nothing suitable to wear. T has kept them since then, always meaning to give them back but just never getting round to it. The jacket is from Etam and the trousers from Chelsea Girl. The jacket still fits but the trousers go nowhere near me!
When I unwrapped these clothes I remembered them instantly although I hadn't seen them for near on 30 years. Again they bought memories, and the tears, flooding back.

As if these gifts weren't enough there was still one more. The final item in the box was a sheet of paper which had a crossword printed on it.
Solving the clues revealed that G had arranged for me to go and visit my lovely friend S in Virginia after first spending time in Washington.
Cue more tears.
I didn't want to appear ungrateful but how could I go on a trip alone to such a beautiful part of the USA, steeped in so much history, when I knew G would love it all too. I couldn't envisage returning and saying 'I've seen this and that' and 'we went here and there' and therefore not having shared memories of all these places.
S has been incredibly generous and said the invitation is open to me, G and S should that work better for us and for a time which suits us all.
At the moment I'm not sure of the who, how and when as we have had so many things going on and we have only been back a week from a really fabulous holiday in Belgium, but plans will be made you can be sure of that.