Little Sparkles

There has been a real autumnal feel to this week, the colours, chill and events of the season are evident everywhere. We spent a lovely Sunday at the local nature reserve, walking through the woods among the crispy fallen leaves and looking out for deer and  today I’ve been to the children’s harvest festival hearing all the old harvest favourites with a few new songs added to the mix too. With my new phone there are few photos for this week’s post, lots are still on my old phone. However there should be enough to give a feel of the week.

My first play on the iPhone and Layout app.
My first play on the iPhone and Layout app.


As well as the blogs I follow, the only reading I have done this week is my magazine, The Simple Things. I really like this magazine with its focus on seasonality and simplicity and quality writing and illustrations, its refreshing not to wade through pages of glossy designer clothes sections, tacky free gifts etc..


I very proudly listened to the children singing at their harvest festival. Little Man sang a number song about acorns and squirrels and Little Miss performed a rock and roll harvest, complete with sunglasses and hand jiving! The older children spoke about poverty in this country and their statistics were shocking, 20% of the school’s population could be affected by poverty. The food collection this year was for our local food bank, a sad indication of the state of our nation and the growing disparity between rich and poor.

Little Miss has also started guitar lessons and has been diligently practising so I have heard the tune Falling leaves many time s this week.

I have also listened to a beautiful song I wasn’t Expecting that by Jamie Lawson.  Its a real tear jerker of a song, with a heart breaking story running through it.  (Post script, I’ve just seen this video for the first time, so original and if possible even sadder than the song!)


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I saw the final of the Great British Bake Off and loved that the winner was Nadiya, she was sassy, bright and extremely talented. Whilst I haven’t watched every episode this series, 8pm is a bit early to settle down and watch tv, I have been following it on Twitter and in the papers. It is such a quintessential British programme and a delight to watch. I also though Nadiya’s words following her win were brilliant.

On Saturday afternoon, whilst Mr S was painting the hallway, I cuddled up on the sofa with the children to watch the Book of Life, this film was fantastic, a great story with wonderful animations.

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I have also watched the Jenny Maizel tutorial for her first module of #Sketchbookclub, a project on houses. It was very informative and inspiring and I have started the project, so far I have done the pencil drawing and am currently doing all the detailing with a fine liner pen. Next is the painting which I’m a little nervous about but I am loving doing something artistic, normally I’m a crafter so drawing is a new skill to develop.


Lots more home cooking this week, an autumn vegetable crumble, mushroom stroganoff, a variety of soups and a chestnut and vegetable pie. I love chestnuts but seem to use them simply in Christmas meals so it was a real treat to have them in this week’s shopping. I also made a lovely rich bread and butter pudding with left overs. My new meal planning and fortnightly shopping is having a really positive effect on our meals and cost.


The coats, hats and scarves have started to emerge this week. I’m very grateful for hats, I’m trying to keep off the hair dye until my next appointment to improve the condition of my hair but its getting very grey now. Part of me is liberated by not having the monthly hairdresser appointments to hide my roots and is tempted to reveal the real me the other part is feeling quite old and frumpy with the colour, its 12 days until my next appointment when hopefully we’ll be trying a more natural dye, the dilemma is to go light or back to my natural brown.

And lastly

I have had an odd week this week as my bank card was cloned and tried to be used fraudulently. My bank HSBC have been excellent, they noticed odd activity, contacted me and sorted it efficiently. They had declined all the fraudulent payments from my account so the only inconvenience was not having a bank card for two days. Since the incident, I have been busy updating security on my computer, but the bank don’t know how the card was cloned. I had a couple of odd experiences at the end of last week in a shop and at a cashpoint, so perhaps it happened here. However it is all sorted but was a cautionary tale of how easily fraud could have happened. One of the first apps on my iPhone was my bank app to keep a careful check on my account.


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