Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Manchester sleepout - where I sleep under the stars for the Booth Centre

On Friday I'm taking part in an event to raise money for the Booth Centre. Myself and a large group of people will be sleeping rough in the grounds of Manchester cathedral for The Manchester Sleepout.

I signed up a few months ago as I really wanted to raise the target of £150 to ensure the homeless have a place to go to find a way out of endless nights of sleeping rough.

The Booth Centre do some fabulous things, in the past 6 months they have: 

- helped 158 people to find temporary or permanent accommodation,

- enabled 390 people to take part in their activities programme, including art, music, sports, woodwork, gardening and much more,

- helped 38 people gain nationally recognised qualifications,

- supported 58 people to take up employment, education, training or voluntary work in the community.

The funds raised through The Manchester Sleepout enables them to continue to offer this vital support to people over the next 12 months. 

I have to admit I'm quite nervous about sleeping rough for the night.

It will be just me, my camping mat and my sleeping bag on a patch of floor in the grounds of Manchester Cathedral.

But this is only for one night, hundreds of people have been and are sleeping like this every night and I just want to do something to help them. 

On Friday please send me a tweet or a like/message on Facebook, I will be probably awake and will appreciate the support. The event starts from 9pm and I'll be finding my spot around 10pm.

Wish me luck and thank you to everyone who has donated. 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Spooky Seas and Brick or Treat, Halloween events at the Trafford centre this half term

The Sealife centre and the Legoland Discovery Centre at the Trafford Centre, have some special spooky events over the Autumn half term. So, if like myself you're looking for activities to entertain your little ones, read on.......if you dare!

Spine tingling spooky species is what we were greeted with as our exploration of the Sealife centre's Spooky Seas event began.

From creepy crustaceans to bio luminescent beasties, there are plenty of ghoulish goings on to get the family in the mood for the Halloween.

Everything is not what it seems under the dark mysterious waters of the oceans. Brave, inquisitive, and eager explorers will learn that some of the scariest looking creatures are actually some of the most sensitive in the ocean.

Sealife recommend these frightfully fantastic fish to check out: 

"Look out for the Vampire Tang, so called because of fang like markings on its body rather than a thirst for blood as it actually just eats algae! There’s also the Pinecone fish, which glows spooky shades of orange, blue and green. This is a regular phenomenon in the marine world, more commonly known as bio-luminescence, and is caused by bacteria that live in a special organ some marine animals have called a photophore."

My children were absolutely enthralled by the Spooky Seas event, as well as the fiendish fish, there were lettered pumpkins to find inside the less scary tanks to build a secret word. The beauty of the gracious giant turtle swimming around was a great way to relax after an exciting energetic visit.

The Spooky Seas event runs until the 1st of November so swim on over for a frightfully fun time.

Make sure you pop on over next door to the Legoland Discovery Centre for their Halloween event, Brick or Treat.

Turn up to visit and you’ll be given a special Halloween Hunt card that needs to be completed during the journey around the attraction. 

Whilst you are there, keep an eye out for three giant spooktacular castles, which have been built by the resident Master Model Builder and his Creative Crew, but be warned, they’re each haunted by LEGO® zombies, ghosts and skeletons!!!

We made bright orange LEGO® pumpkins that got attached to the ghost train to circle around a haunted castle. The detail of the castles are fantastic, the children loved them, especially trying to find the zombies!!!

As a brilliant bonus, children that get into the Halloween spirit and dress in costume on the 31st October will get free entry into the attraction when accompanied by one paying adult!


I hope you have a fabulous half term and a happy Halloween!!

Saturday, 17 October 2015

The one where I turn thirty

Yes the time has come for me to stride into my thirties, and to be honest I am pretty excited about it!

I've always felt older than my age so I am looking forward to welcoming this new decade with open arms.

I feel like I have really found myself through the bottom end of my twenties and I can confidently say what I love, what I enjoy and who I am. 

Going back to university helped me focus on finding myself, I learnt who Amy actually is and in my thirtieth year I will graduate with my degree, I will be married for 10 years, my eldest daughter will start secondary school and I will also finish a course with the Church of England.

I'm so excited to turn 30!!! 

I've still got lots to learn and occasionally I feel like I'm still a little girl trying to walk around in my Nan's heels pretending I'm an adult.

Here's to turning 30, cheers all!!!!

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Rats and sats

It was parents evening tonight.

I have mixed feelings about parents evenings, on one hand I like them as I get to hear about how well the children are doing, on the other I am a bit of a loose cannon.

I was listening to my eldest's teacher talking about the focus on the SATS exams and my brain decided it had to voice an opinion. Now in my mind I was constructing a critique to show my dislike for the SATS.......instead I reclined back into my seat and this came out.

Me: "well I have to let you know that I don't give a rat's ass about the SATS"


I had a smile on my face as I delivered my well constructed opinion, I felt like the whole corridor had gone quiet, a flock of birds had been disturbed and everyone in the school stopped moving.

After a few seconds of awkward silence the teacher spoke, my husband had a confused look on his face.

After a pause I clarified that I wouldn't be putting any pressure on my eldest for government statistics. The teacher seemed to have a similar opinion thankfully. 

But why on earth did I say "a rat's ass"?????

I could have said, I don't believe in putting 10/11 year olds under pressure, 
I could have said, it's ok we aren't too worried, 

oh no......that's right.....I don't give a rat's ass.


I mentioned that I might not be around after school as much as I'm back to uni next week.

I don't think she gave a rat's ass. :) 

Friday, 11 September 2015


Woah, what a week!

The first full school week back has not disappointed in throwing us all back into our busy timetable, I feel like I sit down at the same time of day, look at the clock and I've only got twenty minutes until it's school pick up time.

My eldest is in year six now and changing so much, she's just been made Head Girl!! But today whilst waiting to watch her receive her headteacher's award I was given my middle daughter's first educational psychology report. I had been very anxious about this whole process, it reminded me of waiting for her diagnoses to confirm her deafness, I was so worried about the change it would bring to her life, but my fears were not needed she took it all in her stride. She is an amazing little girl and I know with the extra help she will now receive she will continue to be the ray of sunshine to everyone she meets.

Change is also on the cards for my parents as they are separating, hopefully they will find happiness.

Things are certainly changing, but change is good, sometimes a bit of pruning is done in our lives to make us stronger, we don't always control the secateurs that do the snipping, but soon a new flower will grow, and eventually we will grow even more than before the pruning. 

Have a great weekend all. 

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Save Syria's Children

I've spent the week in a mixture of complete sadness and furious anger over the refugee crisis.

Many people don't agree with my views and that's ok, but for those who do and feel like we should be doing more to help, this post is for you.

The parent blogging community have come together to support the Save the Children Crisis appeal and we are asking people to donate £5 by texting the word SYRIA to 70008.

The whole message is a strong one, just like the image of the little boy on the beach. I've cried and prayed for him and the rest of the refugees, I'm sending clothes to Greece to help refugees over there, and if raising more awareness and money can be done then I'm all for it.

I look at my children, and my throat closes with grief thinking about if that was us fleeing from war. I feel sick to my stomach that children all around the world face hardships that we could only imagine.

Please don’t turn a blind eye.
Do Something to help.
#SaveSyriasChildren To donate £5 please text SYRIA to 70008

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

School holiday lessons

The children are back to school next week, it has come round quite quickly but they are looking forward to starting their new school year.

I could continue this post with gushing descriptions of all the fun we've had through the holiday but I'm not, I'm going to look at what I've learnt over these past five weeks as a parent. So sit back, grab a cuppa and well......try to stay awake.

1) It doesn't matter how well you try to plan the time during the holidays, it pretty much just is a random arrangement of events that you have no control all.

2) Don't even bother doing the back to school shoe shop, it's always busy, it's always stressful, get your kids feet measured and buy them online.

3) The weather is your best friend, sunny, you avoid soft play hell, rainy you can avoid going out at all.

4) Pancakes are the best emergency breakfast when you have absolutely no food in the house.

5) Collect loose change in a pot for emergency corner shop essentials, (wine)

6) Never underestimate the sound of silence when it comes to children, especially when it involves felt tip pens. 

7) Flushing the toilet before you use it is a necessity.

8) I will always be a working mother.

9)  Regarding the above point, I read the following quote in an article about working mums "working doesn't make you a bad mother, mothering doesn't make you a bad worker"

10) Church is great, more than great, I love it.

11) Sometimes you just have to buy the sweets, it's worth the smiles and you get to be mum of the year for an hour.

12) Same above applies for, ice-cream, small rubbish toys, chocolate, a drink that has a character on it, a gingerbread man that isn't broken and ice lollies even when it's not sunny.

13) Sitting on the sofa that only has room for two and actually there is you and five children all smushed together is actually awesome.

14) Dancing around the kitchen en mass is exercise and also hilarious.

15) Farts get funnier the older the children get.

16) "Love you Mummy" deletes all craziness that has ensued through the day.

17) I still love Pokemon.

What have you learnt this summer holiday? 

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Lego Ninjago Airjitzu at Legoland Discovery Centre

We were invited to unearth our inner ninja with the New Lego Ninjago Airjitzu at Legoland Discovery Centre, Barton Square, Trafford centre.

We're massive fans of Lego here in our house, from duplo to building the fun Lego sets, especially from the Lego movie, so the children were really excited it go and learn the art of Airjitzu!!!

Until 31st August, families and children can enjoy building their own Ninjago mask, take part in a laser maze challenge and practice their ninja accuracy skills at the flyer academy.

And if that is not enough, other fun activities taking place include hands-on creative build challenges, mini figure trading and for those looking for an even tougher test of their skills, master model builders will be holding building classes for some truly spectacular constructions.

We had a fabulous time running around, spinning off the Airjitzus as high as we could get them!!!!
The children absolutely loved learning to fly their Airjitzus!

We met the star of Ninjago Kai !!!!

Practising some air ninja moves!!!!!

All worn out after a great day!!!!

Pop down to the Legoland discovery centre before the end of August to have some great family Lego building fun, maybe pop into the sea life centre afterwards! We did and the children had a whale of a time!! (Sorry I can't resist a good pun)

Hope you all have an enjoyable last few weeks of the school holidays!!!