Back in May I posted a teaser video for Tearfund’s ‘The Choice’ campaign and invited you to sign up to receive more information.

If you didn’t and you’re still curious to know more, here is the second teaser, this time giving a bit more information!




Keep your eyes peeled for the third and final clip coming in July along with news of some exciting competitions (can’t wait to hear about those!)

If you are interested in knowing more about The Choice: A true story from Cambodia, you can sign up here

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I have been desperate to do some sensory play with the kids but am still awaiting delivery of my Tuff Spot Tray (fingers crossed it will arrive any day now!) However, I decided to not let lack of a mess container stop me and decided I liked the idea of using shaving foam for a sensory play activity.

I wanted to use some plastic dinosaur toys that Eli has to create a dinosaur land with greenery and volcanoes.  Typically, it didn’t turn out at all as I had hoped.  For starters, I could only find one dinosaur out of the ten that we own and it was raining outside so I could only bring a small amount of greenery in as it was all sopping wet.  Once I’d put it all out I thought it looked a bit weak so I squirted some random trails of cream around the table which just made it look worse!!

BUT, the kids didn’t mind at all.  I really ought to take the lesson that no matter how much of a perfectionist I am, kids have brilliant imaginations and can work with pretty much anything.


They really enjoyed themselves.  I had created some ‘water’ out of shaving cream and blue colouring but Meg asked for real water so I put out a tub of that.  Eli created an ‘ice rink’ for Upsy Daisy and Makka Pakka and apart from when he accidentally upturned the water tub onto himself, it really couldn’t have been less stressful.

Afterwards I stuck them both in the shower and put the mat outside for the shaving cream to wash away in the rain.  Possibly the easiest clean up I’ve ever done after messy play!!

What do you think to our rainy day activity?

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The Glassblower of Murano by Marnia Fiorato
A captivating story of love and betrayal set in seventeenth-century Venice…


I bought this book on the strength of another book Marina Fiorato had written called The Venetian Contract.  Having loved that book so much I felt sure that this would be along the same lines.

Unfortunately, I was quite disappointed.

It is another book which has a storyline set in the past and a storyline set in the present (seem to be reading quite a lot of those at the moment!)

In the present, Nora comes to Venice following the failure of her marriage, looking to follow in the footsteps of her Venetian ancestors and enter into the profession of glassblowing.  Despite the fact that women haven’t ever been allowed to work as glassblowers on the island of Murano, she is given a chance by a factory owner on the strength of her surname: Manin.  What Nora doesn’t realise is that although her ancestor Corradino Manin was a great glassblower, responsible for many of the significant glass artefacts in Venice, there is also a dark secret attached to his past.

We also then follow the story of Corradino Manin set in 1681 and his alleged deceit when he sells the secrets of Venetian glassblowing to the French King Louis XIV.

The problem I had with the book was that the plot was just full of holes.  It wasn’t a very believable story in the first place; why would Nora be allowed to work in the Murano factory without even being asked to prove herself simply because she had the surname ‘Manin’.  Then there is the love story between Nora and a Venetian policeman, Alessandro.  He turns up, then disappears randomly, and in the meantime Nora somehow falls head over heels in love with him.  Then it transpires that he is living with a female journalist who somehow happens to be the very journalist who turns up to interview Nora after a campaign is started by the factory owner to try and bring business back to the glassworks using Nora’s ancestry. This is never explained.  Alessandro mentions meeting the journalist in order to ask her to pull a story but the fact we are told that he has been living with her but that is never addressed is just plain odd.  Why tell us?  Why make it a point of contention between Nora and Alessandro?  I won’t even begin to go into the randomness of Nora falling pregnant…

The story of Corradino Manin is quite an interesting one and did appeal to my love of all things historical but that was really just a sideline to the present story, intended to give context to Nora’s talent of glassblowing and the reason why some of the existing glassworkers are hostile towards her.

It was just a really piecemeal storyline and, if I’m honest, I wasn’t that impressed with the level of writing.  The Venetian Contract was flowing, and beautifully descriptive, and the story was interesting with believable characters.  This really really paled by comparison.  Had this been the first book of Marina Fiorato’s that I had picked up, I certainly wouldn’t have attempted another one.

Disappointing and not worth reading in my opinion.  And it’s not often I say that about books!

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Reasons to be Cheerful at Mummy from the Heart

So we are back from our holiday and feeling suitably relaxed and chilled out.  Ready to take on the world again (or something…)

Here are just a few of the things I’m chipper about this week:

Party Time
Although I had to miss BritMums (which I am not not not not not jealous about), we had a really great time celebrating with friends on Saturday night.  We dropped the kids off at their Nana and Grandad’s, put our party faces on and had a good old dance.  My Other Half fancies himself a bit of a party animal so he certainly enjoyed himself!

Quality Time
It was so lovely to be able to spend quality time together as a family on holiday, I really don’t think it can be beaten.  We flit about so much doing various things that I think we’ve forgotten to sit back and really watch Meg and Eli.  I learned so much about them in those 12 days we were away (but I’ll post about that another time) – especially about Eli, gone is my baby and a real little boy has begun to emerge in his place.


Pitch Perfect
About a month ago I discovered the film ‘Pitch Perfect’ – I rented it on our movies on demand and then I rented it again to show my Other Half, then I rented it again by myself and then I rented it again to watch with some friends.  It has quickly become an obsession and it is definitely one of those films I can watch over and over again, enjoying it just as much as if it was the first time I’ve seen it.  The only other film I’ve ever had that with is Miss Congeniality, which I still love even to this day!!

So I was delighted when my Other Half decided to go out and buy it for me, now I can watch it to my hearts content!  Granted, he was probably only thinking about our Virgin bill but still…I’m excited!!


I know in my last #R2BC post I said I would reveal a big secret but can you believe that I can’t tell it yet!  I had hoped that two weeks would be all we needed to get all the details finalised but it hasn’t worked out that way.  Sorry to keep you all hanging on!!  Hopefully soon I will be able to tell all.

Hope you have all had great weeks.  I’m linking up with Michelle’s #R2BC – head over to her blog to read more of the posts.

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Whenever I hear that Wimbledon is about to start I experience a huge pang of nostalgia.  There is one particular summer that always springs to mind when I think about it; the first summer after Meg was born.

It was so incredibly hot and I spent almost every day collapsed on the sofa with the fan blowing cold(ish) air onto us, with Meg alternating between feeding and sleeping.  For whatever reason I decided that this was the year I would watch as many games of Wimbledon as I could and so the TV was constantly on in the background.


Meg was only 1 month old at the time and as a refluxy baby she didn’t enjoy being put down to sleep in her Moses Basket so it was really relaxing and nice to just be able to let her sleep on me.

I remember the Federer v Roddick final going on for ages, and trying to explain to my totally uninterested Other Half all the intricacies of the game afterwards (even though I’d slept through the majority of it!)

I can also remember making the decision to start playing tennis again, as I used to be quite good at it, although that has never happened!!


I don’t really recall another time when we got to have such a level of peace with quality Mummy and Meg time.  It will always always be one of my most favourite times as a Mummy.


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