Wow!!! Tesco app with barcode scanning!

Well I never. I just happened upon the tesco online app, and noticed an interesting claim. Scan and add. So, intrigued of Halifax, I downloaded it and went down to the kitchen in search of something to scan. So, basically, you click the button and the camera starts up with guides into which you fit your barcode. Once it has it, the guide turns green and hey presto. In seconds the website returns the product details of your chosen item. I am suitably impressed!

Todd Saville stays for the weekend

Todd Saville is the Nursery bear. Each of us takes it in turns to bring Todd home for the weekend and look after him.  He arrived with us on Friday with a hat, shoe bag, jumper, toothbrush and ‘handbag’.

In an unsusal event, Daddy and Mummy were out Friday night having a romantic meal, so Gemma the baby sitter looked after me and Todd. We were very good for Gemma – she did puzzles with us, then read 3 books and sang us some songs before we went to bed. I LOVE having Gemma to look after me…she’s good fun and makes me laugh.

Saturday morning the sun was shining so we decided to take Todd to Manor Heath Park.  As it’s close to our house, Mummy let me take my little pushchair and I pushed Todd nearly all the way to the park.  I showed Todd around my park and he enjoyed the swings, slides and see saw.  After a long time at the park we went for a drink and to share a scone at the park cafe. I shared my Strawberry milk with Todd and Mummy had a coffee.  We saw mummy’s friend Eowyn and her little girl Verity.  I introduced Todd to Verity and Verity showed me her bear too.

Once we’d finished our drinks we went to look at the terrapins in the ‘Jungle Experience’.  There aren’t as many as before because someone has stolen lots of them.

There are lots and lots of little quail birds in the jungle though and there where some big butterflies as well.

When it was time to go home we felt really really tired and so Mummy said she’d push both of us back up the hill to our house.  We had a nice nap and then Daddy made scrummy chilli – I ate a lot and Todd sat in my high chair and had spaghetti bolognaise.

On Sunday we all went to Ikea. Mummy grumbled all the way round because it was busy and she’d sworn never to visit Ikea on a Sunday although her and daddy said she was making an exception as I was getting a special present today so I was quite excited.  I really like going to Ikea – it’s like 100 little houses all ready to poke around and look in the cupboards. I like picking stuff up and running about but today Mummy said Todd and I had to stay in the trolley as it was too busy, so I just talked to her all the way round and asked lots and lots of questions. We picked up some boxes and Mummy said it was a kitchen, but it just looked like a cardboard box to me.

At home Daddy put everything together in super quick time and I spent all afternoon playing with a brand new tiny Ikea kitchen.  Mummy and Daddy also bought a little table and chair for me to have in the living room because I like doing my jigsaw puzzles and drawing a lot at the moment.  Here are some photos to show you our weekend:-

Nanna Birthday Visit

My friend Lisa and I had a discussion that got me thinking. Her and Matthew had booked to go to the south of France on summer holiday with the kids. Matt wanted to drive down through France to give the older kids an adventure, but Lisa felt it was too much for Lily – who is the youngest, as Lily can’t sleep in the car.  They came to an un-usual agreement – Matt drove down with the older children and Lisa flew with Lily.  They were both happy with the arrangement and it worked out for all concerned.

It struck me that neither Soph or I like long journeys in the car which proved a challenge for trips to Nanna and Grampys new des res near to coast, but was sure she’d like the train as she could read, colour and interact.  Guy’s not so keen on the train.  So, we decided to trial Soph and I going ahead on the train, on Thursday and Guy following after work on Friday.  The plan was good because it meant I just needed 1 day off work (Friday) for a 5 day mini break(thur to Mon)  and Guy could join us without giving up any work days as he was too busy to take any holiday.

A little bit of planning ensued as we needed to have some kit at Nanna and Grampy’s house.  We ordered a car seat from Kiddicare, got a cheap buggy from an ebay seller a few miles away picked up by Grampy and Nanna & Grampy sourced a fetching pink ready bed for Sophie to use and a large trug to act as a tempory Sophie bath (as well as all the little special bits and bobs they get to make us feel welcome).

I borrowed a big rucksack from our friends Francesca and David, bought some advance train tickets and a few small toys and books for the trip. We also found some clever travel pens with lids that can’t be lost.

On Thursday morning Guy dropped us a Leeds station on his way to work and we trotted off to get our train at 9.05am.

The train was on time and we had a seat booked.  The man who was booked to be next to us saw we could do with a bit more room and said he’d sit the other side of the aisle so we could spread out.  We went to Peterborough, then Peterborough to Norwich. Sophie played and read and was a thoroughly good girl all the way.

We had a spot of lunch in Norwich station (pasty and sausage roll) and then got on the little train to North Walsham.  On that train we got talking to a man who was visting relatives and had come from New Zealand 2 days before. Then we found out he’d lived in North Shore for 20 years and had only moved recently to another area.  We could have chatted for ages but we arrived at North Walsham to see a welcome party!!!

We were all very excited and after dropping our kit off at Chez Fitzhugh Grampy drove us straight for the beach.  The buggy served us well as Soph went to sleep in the car and so after transferring her into the new transport we had a long walk along the prom with her snoozing.

Guy arrived in good time on Friday evening and had an easy and quiet journey without us!

On Saturday we all went to look round Cromer having randomly found a little restaurant to have sneeky lunch in.  Soph decided to go to sleep so she snuggled while we had a rather splendid selection of Italian dishes, lovely olives and bread, pasta, pizza and risotto. Coffee was perhaps the best tasted in a long while.

On Sunday Helly and Stuart came over fresh from their holiday in Barcelona (well, 18 hours since) and we all enjoyed lovely birthday lunch and a large selection of mini ice creams and chocolate cake desserts.  Soph then ran around the garden and generally monopolised Helly.  Guy headed home Sunday and Soph and I stayed on for one more night of Norfolk hospitality.

On Monday, Nanny and Grampy took us to the station for our train home, which was another successful, if busy, journey.  Next visit I’d consider booking earlier to get even cheaper tickets so that I can book Sophie a seat as well.  Its all very well not paying for them til they’re 5 but really, on a long journey it’s not practical to expect them to sit on your knee for that length of time.

We look forward to our next train adventure to North Walsham!

Catchup…Centerparcs – Oct 2010

 In October we went to Centerparcs Nottingham.

We hired bikes and a charriot for Sophie and cycled everywhere. Bottoms were a little sore as the week went on.

Nottingham CP is looking a bit tired now, and site traffic took the shine off the ambience, but overall it was a good break.

There is a super play area for toddlers next to the lake, with a water play area, little slides in the tropical pool and we had some cygnets come to the our patio as well as the usual greedy geese and ducks to feed. 

We stayed in a refurbished lodge, which was generally good apart from the lack of space for anything in the kitchen area.  There was NO SPACE to store food…for a self catering location it seems a bit of an oversight.  On this occasion we hadn’t taken much food as we’d decided to cook as little as possible but if I’d have taken my normal 3 crates of food for the week we would have had a problem.

Perhaps visitors to Nottingham are more likely to eat out? I dunno, just seemed odd to us.

Anyway, it was only 1hour 15 mins trip to get there so very easy to get there and a good little break before our forthcoming ‘Super Sized’ trip.

Nanna and Grampy come to Halifax Hotel while their bathroom is being done

In August, Nanna and Grampy availed the services of Halifax Hotel while their bathroom was being done.  On Monday Soph took them to Eureka as there was a special offer on the get an annual pass for the price of 1 normal entry.  Eureka are celebrating their 18th birthday this year – they opened 3 days after Chessy was born!

Tuesday and Wednesday Nicky & Guy went to work and Sophie to Nursery. Nanna and Grampy did some mooching and then on Thursday we went on the train to Hebden Bridge for lunch and a mooch around.

Here are some pics of our Eureka trip…

Catchup from September – Chessy goes to uni

August 19th, 2010, 7am.

Results day. Chess has planned to go to college with Gemma (aka her wife) to pick up their results.

BBC news reports UCAS website down and phonelines gridlocked as volume of students trying to get places in clearing.

Somewhat surprisingly,technology has indeed moved on in the last erhhghhh coughs (18) years and now results are sent direct to each uni on the Tuesday, places decided on wednesday, offer letters are posted / added to central website then on Thursday students simply log onto ucas or even get a text to offer them a place at their chosen establishment.

Needless to say, I’m up and wringing my hands, stopping urges to drag Chess out of bed and force her to log on to get her results. Have to wait an hour and a half before the texts from her mates getting in to uni wake her and she logs on.

Site down.

Have cup of tea, more texts arrive.

8am – More doom and gloom on tv as uni’s have been penalised if they offer more than their quota so many less places in clearing. Chess’s chosen course is popular and there are no unis offering the subject through clearing. It’s shit or bust folks.

9.30am – still no access. Chess goes for shower. I start to feel sick.

10.25am – get access, no results but AN OFFER!!!!! We jump about and hug. Chess rings Guy and a little tear may have been shed. I cried 3 times in anticipation earlier so get through tear free. Oh my god-the clock is ticking. 3 weeks to U day!!!!

Next 3 weeks are crazy. Student bank account, confirming accommodation, laptop, bedding, towels, kitchen, bathroom, food, stationary, the list seems endless. There may be a few lists laying around…

Sept 4th 2010. Moving day.

Early start. Chess has requested nice breakie so we have eggs benny, waffles and bacon. Yum!!!

Car packing starts. Everything in boxes so guy gets car packed in record time.

10.15am. Soph and I say goodbyes and they set off loaded to the gunnels to pick up Jan.

Lunchtime. Moving party arrives in Liverpool. Jan left to guard the belongings as Guy and Chess move stuff up to new room.

Mid aft. All unpacked, go for coffee and mum and dad say goodbye.

Guy gets home earlier than Soph and I as we’ve been amusing ourselves in Leeds and came back to a flat so have to wait for a new tyre.

When little one is in bed, we raise a glass to some top notch organisation and pat ourselves on the back for getting her there.

Now we just keep our fingers crossed she likes it and her course! Pics to follow.

New technology…

Today, I downloaded the iPhone editor for wordpress. I’m thinking it will help me write a few more blog updates with words and not just pics – as I can have a tip tap at lunchtime when my brain is still working, unlike at 8pm when it’s turned to turnip mash. Coming soon…summer visit from north walsham clan, birthday visit to north walsham and October visit to centerparcs nottingham.

Somewhere over the rainbow

Today Sophie’s little house arrived. You can’t imagine my relief when I saw it was prebuilt in panels that are to be screwed together!!! I was envisaging having to build the whole bloody thing! I have to say, so far service from the company (Waltons) has been top notch. They obviously have a good “process” person and their sat nav is up to date – 2 things that are sadly lacking in mail order these days.  They emailed to confirm, then called yesterday to check I was still ok with delivery today, checked best number to contact me on and a very polite man called 30 mins before arriving and lifted the little house into the garage. I’ve read the instructions and there are only 9 or 10 steps in all, not including treating it but Sophie thinks it’s hugely exciting! Comments on the website from customers say the house is watertight so lovely for both summer and winter.  It is however a 2 person job according to instructions, so we’ll be doing it during nap times and evenings over the weekend.

I have a few more pics to add later. Weather is due to look up at the weekend, so fingers crossed for productive house building.  Daren’t put up the raised beds and plant them up until the house is up, just in case it doesn’t fit and we have to move it…but seeing as we have some greenfingers visting next week, I’m sure by the time I go back to work I’ll have a new smart garden with herbs and veggies.