Friday, 22 June 2012

And The Winner is............

Hello All!

Thank you to everyone who entered my Giveaway! I have to admit Mia and I have been very excited this evening to pick the winner! We wrote everyone's names on to pieces of paper and poppped them in to the (empty!) teapot;

I wish everyone could have won, but there can only be one winner tonight, and that is....

MARIA!!! (Rose Tinted Spectacles) Well done Maria!! I am so pleased for you and very excited to send off your parcel - please can you send me an e-mail ( with your address and I will post your parcel off to you next week.

I'm sure you will love the magazine! And the little mystery "box of delights" I have put together for you.

Thanks again to everyone who entered, I have really enjoyed hosting this Giveaway - I will certainly be doing another one in the Autumn!

Marina xx

Thursday, 21 June 2012

The Interim Sunny Spell & Giveaway Reminder!

Hasn't it been a miserable couple of weeks weather-wise! I was really hoping for some sunshine this weekend so we could put up the Cath Kidston play-tent in the garden! It certainly doesn't sound like we will be able to. I don't know about everyone else, but this recent bad weather has left me feeling very lethargic and at a bit of a loss for blog inspiration. We were, at least, treated to a little sunshine at the start of this week, and we made the most of it while it lasted;

Tea in the garden with some Cornish icecream for pudding;

It was nice to sit outside and have a browse through some of my old books from when I was a child, i'm so pleased now that I kept them and can enjoy the familiar tales with Mia and Baby Boy;

I still collect Usborne books, especially vintage copies, these have given me so many lovely ideas for things to do with the children;

Lots of lovely old nature stories, perfect for a (rare!) sunny summer's evening;

I'm dreaming now of nature walks in the woods, camping in the garden and fishing for minnows in the river (and putting them back afterwards, of course!) - I think these things are so important for children to experience, sadly I think many of them don't these days.

Just a reminder that tomorrow evening, 6pm, my Pretty Nostalgic magazine giveaway will end and Mia will be picking the winner from the hat - good luck everyone and there's still time to enter to be in with a chance of winning the lovely magazine and box of "mystery" goodies! Click on the picture below; (if this doesn't work you will find the link to my Giveaway post on my sidebar)

Marina xx

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Two Toadstools and a Jubillee Dresser!

I know that you're probably all completely "Jubillee'd-out" by now, but I had to post a few pictures of my current dresser display! I will also be keeping this up for the Olympics, with perhaps just a few changes here and there;

Over the past 6 months I have been collecting royal memorabilia from charity shops and jumble sales in readiness for my display, including a 1977 Silver Jubillee tray, 99p:

Commemorative mugs from Royal Weddings, the Diamond and Golden Jubillee and an original Coronation beaker, this was just 10p from a jumble sale last year, the others were all between 30p - £1.00;

A lovely display, which cost me next to nothing!

This original flag came from the loft of my late Nan's house, my mum remembers waving it at a street party celebrating the Coronation when she was a little girl;

Now you're probably thinking what an earth my Jubillee display has to do with the Toadstools! Well....nothing, only that they fitted in to the colour theme so they were allowed to stay. I've been dying to show you these since I bought them last month at the Smallholder & Garden Festival in Builth Wells;

Aren't they lovely!! You could watch them being carved, and for an extra 50p, a name added;

for Mia and Baby Boy!!

Mia was very pleased...and perhaps one day Baby Boy will be too! I just couldn't resist them as i've developed quite a thing for Toadstools recently! I've been admiring some fabric and miniature pegs from Ebay, as well as these lovely fairy-lights, candles and felt models from the Dotcomgiftshop;

We could definitely have some fun with those I think!

Marina xx

Sunday, 10 June 2012

The Last Day of Half Term

I am always a little sad when the school holidays come to an end. I love having Mia at home, and always try to plan lots of fun things to make and do. The bad weather has been such a shame this week, but at least we were very lucky in that the sun shone on Monday afternoon for the village Jubillee celebrations! (see my previous post).

The rest of the week flew by as half-term usually does! But here are a few highlights, we had a lovely time, despite the weather.

A walk up to the lake in town, Mia enjoyed taking her scooter (£3.00 from the Scout Jumble Sale a couple of months ago!)

Chilly...but never too cold for icecream!

The lovely dragon fountain, they were making this when Mia was a baby, I used to come up here most days and sit and read whilst she dosed in her pram. One day they were giving you the chance to write your name in copper-plate on one of the scales of the dragon for £1.00. I wrote Mia's name and date of birth - nice to think it's still there now;

The swans had 7 cygnets and Mia enjoyed feeding them;

A bus trip to our closest large town, Hereford on Wednesday. This was a REAL treat for Mia & I! We used to do this often before I had Baby Boy, but this is the first time in a year. He was with the childminder on Wednesday and i'd taken the day off work, so Mia could have some "mummy time" all to herself. She really deserved it, she has been wonderful and so understanding, accepting that since having Baby Boy, I haven't been able to do all of the things we used to so easily.

(Photo from Google images)

We enjoyed the bus journey there and back, which takes you a long way around all of the stunning Herefordshire villages - they looked so pretty, especially with the Jubillee bunting still up! The hedgerows were abundant with cowparsley, so pretty! How I would love to have stopped off at one of the "chocolate-box villages" and stayed a while - long enough to take some photographs and have a good day, perhaps!

We had a lovely day together, Mia's "treat" was to be able to take the contents of the huge egg money box we have on the dining room windowsill; (this is where we empty our purses and pockets throughout the year)

and spend whatever amount there may be in Claire's Accessories! She couldn't wait!! She came home with;

Lots of "One Direction" goodies and a Harry poster. She LOVES One Direction and Harry is her favourite. She is only 8!! It makes me feel quite sad that my baby girl is growing up and in to a boy band!..but then again I was madly in to Jason Donavon and Kylie Minogue at her age! She also loves Jedward!!

She also bought a skull scarf and top from Primark, two books from "The Works"; One Direction and Jedward! And a football and 3 books (20p each) from one of the charity shops!

It is safe to say that Mia did well...she REALLY enjoyed her day and couldn't wait to get home to show my husband! I on the other hand (no doubt to his relief!) did not buy a single thing! It was one of those shopping trips where I found nothing to my liking - we went to 7 charity shops and the only thing I bought was a book for my mum. Slim pickings in the charity shops lately.

Thursday was horrendous weather wise, luckily we had invited one of Mia's school friends to play for the afternoon. He had not been before, but was a model child! He was very polite, and even complimented me on my Jubillee display on the dresser!! He can certainly come round again!! When I asked him what he would like to drink with his pizza, he replied "a cup of tea would be nice, milky with one sugar, please"! He is only 8 years old! He and Mia settled down to an afternoon of arts and craft - I covered the table with a large roll of white paper and they were happy with a tub of glitter glue pens;

They also made some badges and some lovely felt key rings;

I think they had a great day, despite the weather being too wet and windy for them to venture outside in to the garden to view Mia's collection of animal & bird bones and skulls - she even has a sheep skull! She finds these at Nanny & Grandpas and Nanny puts them in a bucket of bleach before she takes them home! We never know quite what she is going to come back with next!

Mia & I have also enjoyed this week;

Watching Springwatch, on BBC2
Cuddling up in crochet blankets on the sofa and eating marshmallows!
Finding a fabulous map duvet cover in Oxfam as a "spare" for Mia's bed (perfect for when her Cath Kidston boats duvet is in the wash!)
Reading "The Indian in the Cupboard" a birthday present to Mia from her God-Mummy

I hope you have all had a good week xx

Laa Laa's God Save The Queen Swap!

You will no doubt already know from my previous posts, that I LOVE swaps! This one was my second (out of 3) of the Jubillee theme that i've taken part in this month!

This Swap was hosted by Laa Laa, and I was paired with the lovely Jumbleberries.

I was so thrilled to receive Clare's parcel, and these are the beautiful handmade gifts that were inside; as well as a little extra parcel for Mia - she was very pleased!!

The most gorgeous heart - I don't know if Clare knew, but I ADORE these, I hang them from my dresser, and this one looks fantastic as part of my Jubillee display;

A felt "Queen" keyring, isn't it just fabulous!

A lovely brooch - I wore this on my jacket to the Jubillee Party last Monday!;

This fab button bracelet, which again I wore to the Jubillee party;

And a packet of yummy Thorntons champagne truffles! I've almost eaten them all!;

This lovely phone/gadget case; which will come in very handy for my ipod;

Mia was also very pleased to open this lovely crochet headband which she wore to the party;

Thank you SO much Clare, I love all of my beautiful gifts!!

This is what I sent;

Some vintage Coronation Crown hair slides,
Soldier tins
Thorntons Chocs
A Handmade Corgi mirror in a pouch (Etsy)
Handmade (Etsy) Cath Kidston phone cover/ipod case
Royal Flush playing cards
Wool and ribbon
A commemmorative mug
Some Union Jack napkins

I thoroughly enjoyed taking part in this swap, and Clare was so very generous, I was so spoilt! Thank you Clare, I will treasure my lovely gifts!


MoonstruckCreations & Crafts@Home Jubillee Swap!

I have to confess that although i've only been blogging since the start of the year, I have already become somewhat of a Swap addict! I love them so much that I signed up to not one, not two, but THREE Jubillee swaps this Summer! The third, Lakota's Faith Hope & Charity Shopping Swap, where i'm paired up with the lovely Heather, is not due until next month, so i'm still putting that one together, but this week i've received two beautiful parcels, from Twinkle Star (MoonstruckCreations & Crafts@home Jubillee Swap) and Jumbleberries (Laa Laa's God Save the Queen swap).

Now I will post on Laa Laa's Swap later on today, and i'm dying to show you what I have received, Clare has been SO generous!

So in this post I am going to share with you the lovely box of goodies which I received from Twinkle Star and what I sent to her in return.

I'd been having so much fun preparing my swaps, that I'd completely forgotten that I too would be getting something! So I was a little perplexed when I opened the door for the postman and he handed me the parcel. Hubby gave me his usual "what have you ordered this time?!" look, and for once, I was all a blank! :) So you can imagine my excitement when i opened the box!!;

Twinkle Star has been SO generous, I am absolutely thrilled..and a little prezzie for Mia too!

I was like a child on Christmas morning!! This is what was inside;

A lovely handmade brooch! I wore this to the Jubillee party last Monday!;

A Crown ring - fits me perfectly too which is lucky has I have huge knuckles! I LOVE it! and have worn it all week.

Some paperchains; I am very pleased with these as I have kept meaning to buy some and never got around to it - they look great on my dresser;

This fab mask!! Mia has been eyeing this up!;

Sweets - as you can probably tell, they have already been opened, couldn't resist!

A beautiful rose-scented candle - this is very appropriate as Roses are my favourite!

Some gorgeous ribbon, craft paper and buttons; I don't know if Twinkle knew this, but I have a thing for ribbon - I love to go and browse our local habidashery shop and buy a metre or two - sometimes when I have no idea how i'm going to use it - i've got quite a collection!;

Some Union Jack napkins; we had the same idea here, as i'd actually bought these very same ones for another Jubillee swap i'm taking part in!

This brilliant frame! It looks fab in my Jubillee display!

A commemmorative spoon! Now this really brought back memories - I used to collect these when I was a little girl,(I think my Gran started it off by bringing me back one from a holiday in Guernsey) I don't know what happened to my little collection, but i'm very pleased with this!!;

This super chocolate medal - Mia will be wanting this big time - she begged me for one in Tesco not so long ago..I think i will be sharing it! (And keeping the ribbon afterwards!)

And finally, I was chuffed to bits with this!! Twinkle got me spot on and sent me this lovely Enid Blyton book, together with Union Jack bookmark! You may already know that I collect Enid Blyton books, but i've never heard of this one before, so of course didn't already have's perfect!

Mia was also so, so excited to open a little parcel with this most gorgeous hair clip!! She wore it in her hair to the Jubillee party!;

Thank you Twinkle I LOVE everything, i feel very spoilt!

And this is what i sent:

We had the same idea with the paper..I saw it in the window of a shop in town and thought it would be perfect for the swap!;

A commemorative mug;

A handmade mirror (from one of my favourite Etsy shops);

Some ribbon;


Thorntons "Best of British" chocs;

A Handmade Corgi cloth bag; (From Etsy)

A London themed card;

Soldier tin;

Cath Kidston "London" fabric phone/gadget case;

A packet of Royal Flush playing cards;

Some Union Jack cups;

I have had SO much fun taking part in this swap! Thank you Twinkle for my lovely gifts, I shall treasure them all!!