Juneathon 2016 – Week 3

Bit late posting this, sorry about that, had a manic day just running around doing errands! Can’t believe the third week is complete! It’s crazy how fast June is going by!

Day 15
Three Fitness Blender workouts to make one complete workout!
https://www.fitnessblender.com/videos/cardio-kickboxing-and-bodyweight-cardio-workout-fat-burning-intervals
https://www.fitnessblender.com/videos/fun-10-minute-abs-and-obliques-workout-quick-10-minute-abs-workout-for-a-toned-stomach – Has the word ‘fun’ in the name of the workout, not quite sure that’s how I’d describe it personally, but it was very good!
https://www.fitnessblender.com/videos/total-body-cooldown-compound-movements-for-a-total-body-stretch
Add in an additional core workout before the cool down – 20 second plank, 20 second right plank, 3 backward push ups, 20 second left plank and 3 sit ups. I watch a program with my kids called Operation Ouch – which proved you can take more pain if you distract yourself, so I tried this when doing my planks and guess what – it worked! I closed my eyes and imagined I was on a beautiful beach – actually ended up with one of my side planks being 28 seconds!!!
I’ve also completed 3 hours of house work!!! Whew!!! ūüėõ xxxRead More »

I love Joe!

So cheekily a few weeks back I wrote an email inviting myself to Joe Browns, because you may have just about gathered I am a little bit of Joe Browns fan! Well a major Joe Browns fan to be totally¬†truthful, I’m sure you’d never have guessed!

I suggested it could be quite nice to write about Joe Browns from the point of view of a mum.¬† The fact that Joe does clothes that are fabulous, funky and just make you feel so¬†good but are also practical enough to wear when running around after my two small people. The worse they could do was say “No”.

Initially I didn’t hear back from Joe Browns and I was sad – so I tweeted them and through the power of the internet I was put in touch with the lovely Emily and she said it was a great idea! Yay! So then I needed to sort myself out for a trip to Leeds.

So I travelled to Leeds with my hubby bless him, it was meant to be my sister – but unfortunately she couldn’t make it as she was poorly with a bad back – so seriously have to thank the hubby for driving (I’m such a wuss when it comes to motorways!)

So it came the day when I got to visit Joe Browns, to say I was excited is a bit of an understatement, it was like I was meeting a celebrity! I could barely contain myself!

We entered the head office and met the delightful Emily, walking through the offices and to my joy the ethos and décor were exactly as the website/catalogue put across! A motorbike here, a drum kit there, bunting and fun things written on the walls! Loved it!

Generic Images

So Emily led us upstairs to a cool area that they use for photographing clothes and there was a rack full of coats and dresses just for me to try on! I was beside myself and couldn’t wait to try them on! Chatted with Emily for a bit and then she left us to it!

So here you go, the wonderful clothes I got to try on, I’ll let the photos do the majority of the talking, but I was like a kid in a sweet shop…

DSC_0009
All for me!!!

1. Funky Funtime Fur Collar Jacket
Funky Funtime Fur CollarFunky Funtime Collar 2
I love the little details, such as the beautiful lining and the gorgeous buttons. Loving the fur collar for extra cosiness. I normally like a coat to cover my bum, but I would happily wear this jacket – great with some skinny jeans and knee high boots!

2. Statement Coat
Statement Coat
Absolutely adore this coat from it’s beautiful floral lining, to the lovely colours and¬†tulip shape. I own about five Joe Browns coats and would very happily add this to my collection any day! It really does make a statement.¬†This was a favourite of the Hubby’s too!

3. Inspiring Coat
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Great coat Рlike a purple version of the coat I am wearing this winter season which is red (which I am wearing in the photo, with Emily, at the end of this post)! Loving all the different panels, very inspired!

4. Highland Fling Jacket
Highland Fling 2HIghland Fling 3
Adored the lining of this jacket, the jacket itself was a size too large for me so was a bit boxy and I felt I should be jumping on to my horse! haha!

5. Freestyle Fleece Shawl
Freestyle Fleece Shawl 1
This was warm and cuddly.

6. Ultimate Longline Cardigan
Ultimate Longline Cardigan 1Ultimate Longline Cardigan 3Ultimate Longline Cardigan 4
I love, love, love this! I am hoping I have been a good enough girl and Father Christmas will bring it to me!!! A girl can hope can’t she!?!
It has gorgeous embellishments and was extremely comfy. A portable duvet you can look good in, and still able to keep up with my kids!
There’s a¬†black version also available¬†with slightly different embroidered embellishments, but the chocolate one has stolen my heart.

7. Luxurious Jacquard Coat
Luxurious Jacquard Coat
Trying to look super cool with my posing! Yet another gorgeous coat. It’s amazing how¬†good a well made and fitted coat can make you feel better about yourself. I think this one has a sophisticated and elegant air about it.

8. Checked Biker Jacket
Checked Biker Jacket
I liked the off centre concealed¬†zip on this jacket. They’re so good with their detailing!

9. Joe’s Favourite Coat Black
Joe's Favourite Coat Black
Smart, sophisticated coat – with amazing paisley lining.

10. Joe’s Favourite Coat Purple
Joe's Favourite Coat Purple
I think my preference is definitely the purple one – just made it a little different!

11. Striking Coat
Striking Coat
Check out that beautiful lining.  Fabulous button detail too.

12. Baroque Velour Dress
Baroque Velour Dress1
Baroque Velour Dress2
Baroque Velour Dress3
I completely adore this dress – definitely another one on my wish list to Father Christmas.¬† The deep blue colour of the velvet and layering of the skirt, just¬†gorgeous. It was extremely comfortable to wear¬†as well. I didn’t want to take it off!

Got to check out the twirl factor!

13. Out of this World Dress
Out of this World Dress
Something a little different. I wasn’t sure how I felt about this dress on seeing it in the Joe Browns catalogue, I was little ambivalent. Once I tried it on, I was sold.¬†I love the timeless Peter Pan collar, the incredibly detailed pattern, and the fact I feel you could wear this during the day comfortably or dress it up for an evening out! It really is a testament to its name.

14. Flattering Feminine Flocked Dress
Flattering Feminine Dress1Flattering Feminine Dress2
A very easy to wear dress,  I already own a similar version in purple, which incidentally I wore for my mummy Christmas night out!

Twirl time

15. Christmas Cracker Dress
Christmas Cracker Dress 1Christmas Cracker Dress2
Something a little festive.  I really would love this dress to wear on Christmas day, comfy, cosy and cuddly.  Good length sleeves on me too, which is a great plus point!

16. Kalisi Dress
Kalisi Dress 2Kalisi Dress 1
The colour of this dress is beautiful and the detailing very elegant, but I did personally feel I was in a negligée and think I would be too self conscious to wear it out! I do have quite long arms as well, so the sleeves were a bit short for me.

17. Butterfly Jacquard Dress
Butterfly Jacquard Dress 2Butterfly Jacquard Dress 3Butterfly Jacquard Dress 5Butterfly Jacquard Dress 6Butterfly Jacquard Dress1
Considering how many photos I got my hubby to take of me in this dress, you may have guessed it was a personal favourite! I can’t decide between this one and the Baroque velour dress as to which takes the number one spot. Both were so utterly gorgeous. Think they would have noticed if I’d tried to sneak them out though! ;-P

Double twirl for the butterflies

I was extremely lucky to be able to have the chance to try all these wonderful clothes on, so I have to thank Joe Browns for having me and especially to the wonderful Emily for putting up with this mad blogger mummy!

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With the wonderful Emily! This was in one of their meeting rooms – how awesome is that wall? Plus, I am of course, wearing one of my Joe Browns coats!

She also very kindly gave me a goodie bag, which I wasn’t expecting, so was a lovely surprise. I got a beautiful necklace, scarf and good old sweeties.

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So beautiful!

Subsequently I have become a Joe Browns affiliate – so if you do want to buy some of their clothes, which I highly recommend, please come through my site!

I really do love the clothes, each piece is a statement, it’s more than trendy and following the latest fashion it’s about allowing your own personality¬†to shine through. Timeless pieces that get noticed, I have had so many lovely comments about my Joe Browns coats (always a nice little ego boost). I believe they have¬†something for everyone, whatever your shape and size.¬†All the items I have make me feel good (and hopefully look good) when I am running around after my small people, so they are totally practical too! It’s a winning¬†situation all round.

The party¬† dresses are there to make you feel glam on a (childfree)¬†night out, when you want to bring out your inner¬†yummy mummy! It’s amazing what a good outfit can do for your self esteem! I know they make me feel better – and watch out for the Joe Browns¬†sales and outlet,¬†you can¬†grab yourself a¬†bargain, and they cater for men too!

I just had the best time, striking my best model poses¬†– it’s probably lucky for them I live 4 hours away from Leeds!!! ūüėõ xxx

Please like, share and comment on this post – it’s much appreciated!

***This is not a sponsored post, all thoughts and views are my own. Though subsequently to my visit to Joe Browns I have become an affiliate***

 

I made this…

So I can be a proud artsy fartsy creative mummy – I have actually completed something worthy of Pinterest and in this post I’ll take you through the process of how I went about making it!¬†What I will admit before I start (which I haven’t seen on other creative/crafty posts – whether it’s because they’re just more organised than me or just don’t admit it) it took me from ordering the A2 canvas in August 2014 to planning this in September 2014 and¬†finally producing the completed article in April 2015… only eight¬†months… oops…

This all started because I love the song “This House” by Gary Barlow¬†(My 5 year old has told me she thinks she’s “getting in love with Gary”, time to listen to another CD in the car I think – but I digress!!!)¬†– I identify with the lyrics and just think it’s a beautiful song – I’d also been inspired by some canvasses my friend had done with her children – using masking tape and paint – remove the masking tape and you’ve got a beautiful canvas!

So I took the line I most liked from “This House” and planned it on an A4 piece of paper – laying it out and getting the idea of what I wanted my canvas to look like!

6th September 2014... Planning Commenced
6th September 2014… Planning Commenced

Then placed it in the plastic bag with the canvas (ordered from Amazon, link found above) where it sat (and collected dust) until 29th March 2015 – when I finally got to work! I used 25mm width masking tape – which I split into four;

Laying the plan out on canvas

This took me about three evenings, 2/3 hours each time, whilst watching TV and sometimes faffing! I did then find that this supposedly A2 board wasn’t quite four pieces of A4 – it was slightly narrower so had to adjust my measurements – I reduced the distance between the letters, so wasn’t too bad in the end!
Initially I was going to paint the whole thing using all our handprints, but I thought this might not be enough to make the words stand out, so I then split the image into four sections and make a paler version of the colour I wanted each of our handprints to be.

Adding the Background Colour

Next was time to add the handprints – so started with myself and the husband! My handprints are purple and the husband’s are green. I did ours top and bottom so that they surrounded our children. ¬†Once these were dried, the next day was to add the children’s! By this point, I’d spent a lot of time and effort on this, so I was very vocal to the children that they were to only put their hand down when I told them and not to move it around so it smudged the colour (way to go mummy, removing the fun from this activity) – they were both very good! Unsurprisingly – I did the Pink Ones handprints pink and the Blue Ones handprints blue! Though the Pink One told me after she would have preferred red! I told a fib and said we didn’t have any red – she caught me out! “mummy – come here please, you said there was no red, I have checked the box and there is red…!?!” Oops…

Adding the Handprints
Adding the Handprints

I still find it strange that the Pink One and the Blue One’s handprints are similar in size, considering the Pink One is 2 years and 3 months older!!!
Next was the fun bit (though slightly nerve wracking after all that work) – well for me anyway – the removal of the masking tape!!!

Masking Tape Removal Part 1
Masking Tape Removal Part 1
Masking Tape Removal Part 2
Masking Tape Removal Part 2

The only annoying thing was, because I used really high quality ELC poster paint (about £1 per bottle), where bits of the paint were thicker on the handprints, as I took the masking tape off the paint flaked Рbut not to worry, a little touch up with some more paint and it was done!!! Yay!!!

The Final Creation!!! :-)
The Final Creation!!! ūüôā

I am super chuffed with this, it may not be perfect, it may not be exactly as I imagined it, it may not quite have been the family affair I initially envisioned (yes I got a little possessive!) and the ‘A’ may not stand out as much as I would have liked, but over all it came out just great! The sentiments of the image may not seem to be in this household all the time – but this is a house filled with love… most of the time!!!

So, what’s the estimated length of time before it actually gets put up on the wall!?! ¬†Haha!!!

Any questions¬†don’t hesitate to contact me! I would be very happy for any comments or if you’d like to share this post – it would be much appreciated!!! Share with me any of your masking tape creations – that would be fabulous to see!!! ūüôā xxx

Wriggles and Giggles!

I had planned to go for a run this evening, but I would’ve been on my own and it¬†was really cold and really dark and I quite quickly persuaded myself not to go! It might be me, but it seemed darker than normal tonight!

So instead I decided to involve the kids – literally, they were my gym equipment!

I had little people back lifts and little people air lifts – with increasing weights, starting with the Blue One and then finishing with the Pink One.

Back Lifts

Air Lifts

They thought this was hilarious and thoroughly enjoyed mummy lifting them up and down! I have to say it was one of my harder workouts – far tougher then a jog, especially as my gym equipment have minds of their owns! I think I pulled something! ;-P

Lots of fun and laughter was had so that can never be a bad thing.

Probably some Wii Fit for tomorrow – but we’ll see, only three days left to go!

ūüėä xxx

Silver Linings

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!

Hope you all had fun bringing in the new year and are feeling good and positive for the new year ahead!

So today is the first day of 2015 and I managed to get up and out and go for a Parkrun!!!

Now my usual way of thinking is to look at all the negatives – so I could waffle on about how bad a run it was and how slow I went etc etc, but no one wants to read about me whinging and berating myself – there are people suffering a lot worse then a bad park run!!!

Instead, as a New Years resolution, I’m going to try and look for the silver linings in my efforts and not immediately dwell on what went wrong! So here are the silver linings…

1. I woke up!!! Big plus there in itself! I am relatively happy and healthy (give or take a few stomach issues!) and¬†I was surrounded by my¬†beautiful family – and I mean this literally as we stayed at my in-laws for New Years Eve¬†and so the kids were asleep on a mattress on the floor next to us!!! Haha!!! ūüėĄ

2. This counts towards my first Janathon!!! Of which I am very proud to be a participate and I just hope I can do well.¬† If you fancy giving yourself some motivation to get exercising this month – it’s not too late, you can still sign up until the 7th Jan! For more incentive, there are prizes to be won!!!

janathon-participant-logo

3. I wore my Stephen Amell F&@k Cancer T-shirt!!! Very cool T-shirt, bought for a worthy cause and I feel rather privileged to be wearing one! Stephen Amell is an amazing actor, charity supporter and father/husband – plus as an aside is in a fab series called Arrow. I am happily married women, but I think¬†it’s always good to appreciate beautiful things…¬†;-P

F&@k Cancer T-Shirt
F&@k Cancer T-Shirt

4. I cleaned my trainers – this may be a small thing, but I did bring home most of Avery Hill Park on the sole of my trainers, so it’s quite a plus that I’ve already done it! I’m sure my trainers would say ‘Thank You’ if they could!

Avery Hill Park on the sole of my trainers!!!
Avery Hill Park on the sole of my trainers!!!

5. I saw my friend – Janathon’s Deputy Helen.¬†It’s always lovely to see friend – especially one who is offering me so much support and encouragement at the moment! Can’t thank her enough!

6. I wrote¬†this¬†blog! Hoping to blog a bit more regularly – I’m not saying everyday, but at least once a week (if I can!) Also I’ve published it earlier than 11pm at night – which is a novelty for me!

7. I made it – despite the pain in my hip, slipping in the mud and considering bowing out after the 2nd lap – I finished!¬†I didn’t give up!!!¬†This is a good thing – and what I need to focus on and not that it was my worst Parkrun time so far –¬†and also remember¬†it was excessively muddy/slippery and I haven’t been running as often as I usually do due to a poorly November/December!

It really was muddy - More Evidence!!!
It really was muddy – More Evidence!!!

8. Also need to take into consideration it may be the 1st January – but it’s not the first exercise I’ve done this week! I managed 10.66km on Monday (walking & running) with my greatest motivator Helen and on Wednesday I walked quite a distance round High Elms with the family – occasionally carrying the Pink One and the Blue One (surely that counts as weight training!)

9. It’s all good preparation for my first official 10km run on the 18th Jan at the Olympic park (should’ve been Hyde Park, but there was a venue change!)

So feeling positive – I celebrated with a hot shower, a cup of tea and a yummy sarnie made by my fabulous hubby (and some chocolate)!!! I’m so rock ‘n’ roll!

Mmmmm, Yum! Yum!!!
Mmmmm, Yum! Yum!!!

Great start to the new year – so let’s try and keep up the positive thinking! Until next time, have a wonderful day!!! ūüėä xxx

Janathon Tally
Mileage: 5.1km/3.2 miles

Time: 00:37:06

Fun: 5/10