Dancing, 80s music and red noses #littleloves

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A little cheat this week as by writing my post on Saturday I get to add Red Nose day news which this week has been building up to.   Its been a busy week, ballet viewing, parents evening, a new car, RND (another dress up day at school 🙂 ) and the normal comings and goings of a family week.  It was also a week when terrorism struck London again and the sadness and frustration which accompanies such an attack reminds you of the important things in life.

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I finished Bee Wilson’s This is Not a Diet Book.  I have it on Kindle and imagine its quite a short paperback, but so worth the read about our attitudes to food, children’s diets etc.. All excellent counsel on a very important subject presented in a common sense approach.

IMG_5379 On  Monday, I got to see Little Miss dance at her ballet viewing class.  It was lovely to watch and a relaxing hour of dance.  She has now been dancing for 5 years and her grace and poise is beautiful. I never got to have any dance lessons when I was a child and by encouraging her to ballet I hoped that she would not be as clumsy or awkward as I am. She’s not and has discovered a passion and delight in dance which is a pleasure to watch.

On Friday I watched #rednosedayactually. Love Actually is one of my favourite films, so the catch up on the characters was just perfect and the storylines seemed to match their original characters, I like happy endings.  It was definitely the highlight of Red Nose Day and the speech Hugh Grant gave as PM about the good in people was incredibly moving in the light of the terrorist attack this week . I may have whooped at the cards, engagement and children and shed a little tear for the speech and absent friends…

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Mmm I’m really stuck on this category, the most creative activity at work was when I made some red nose animations to introduce a competition we held for RND.  My current work is very office based and formal and I rarely work directly with the children so it was fun to design the competition and then introduce the task to them with my work.  My favourite little animation was Disco Dom, he was such a dude to design.

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I wore a red nose on Friday but not the foam nose which I had bought as this was taken by Little Man who wanted an extra one to complete the class’ collection of the 10 red noses.  I had a pin badge and considering I am often plugged into headphones on my runs, it seemed quite apt.

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With an 80s 24 hour dance a thon on Radio 2 on Monday, I heard a lot of 80s tunes and loved being taken back in time to my childhood.  Whilst loving the music, I was unimpressed with some of the DJs knowledge of the 80s, Jeremy Vine took some convincing that Gorbachev wasn’t the USSR president in 1984.

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Whilst its Mothers’ day tomorrow I don’t think we’ll be able to do our original plan of going out for a family day.  Little Man suffers with chest infections and has been coughing badly today so I think a day resting and being warm indoors is in order.  For years I’ve been trying to visit the ornamental gardens in a neighbouring town and been thwarted each time.  However, I am looking forward to opening the envelopes which came home from school on Friday, nothing beats a homemade card and sharing cuddles with my two little ones.

I am linking up with Morgana at http://www.coffeeworksleeprepeat.com for Little Loves

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Painting, village walks and new pumps #littleloves

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Its been a nice little week, to quote the wonderful Call the Midwife on Sunday, a week when its been easy to ‘find joy in the simple things’  The week started with a quiet weekend at home, Saturday was spent doing cricket practice followed by a trip to the Lego shop to spend the carefully saved pocket money.  On Sunday we did a walk in a nearby picture perfect village (although no photos as its v easy to identify)  and relaxed with a coffee and a lemon cake in a lovely little tea shop.  Such a weekend definitely helps to smoothe in the coming week.  IMG_5375I like a nice mix of fiction and non fiction and this week I’ve been dipping into some of the non fiction titles on my Kindle.  I enjoy the food writing of Bee Wilson so have been reading some of her book ‘This is not a diet book’  It is simple, good advice, focusing an good quality fresh food and it has inspired me to choose some new recipes, really focusing on flavours.

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It was the concluding episodes of two favourite series this week, Call the Midwife and The Replacement.  It was a lovely ending to Call the Midwife, perfect Sunday evening television.  I really enjoyed the Replacement until the last 10 minutes or so, when what had been a great psychological thriller turned into some sort of action movie, a bit out of place with the rest of the programme.  However there was some great acting by the lead actors and it was a drama that did have you engrossed.

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On Sunday afternoon, Little Miss and I decided to do something creative.  I joined Jennie Maizel’s Sketchbook club a few years ago and loved how simple she made her projects so I signed up to Sketchbook 2 and started with the owls project.  Little Miss really concentrated on our project,  carefully watching the video and then following the instructions.  It was a really calming and mindful session.

As you can spot I’ve also made a few headers for this post!

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I have worn my new Converse pumps this week in a metallic rose gold colour.  I make no apologies they are mum uniform but I love them, they go with so many of my clothes and lifestyle and made me happy, I may have had a little skip as I walked along in my new pumps.

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I’ve listened properly to Ed Sheeran’s Divide album (do we still call it that when its a download?)  I like to listen to a new album a few times to get the feel and I’m really impressed.  I think my favourite track is Perfect.

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The weekend is here and I think its time for a little girlie shopping trip tomorrow for a few spring clothes ahead of our Easter holiday,  3 weeks and counting!

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Thank you to Morgana at http://www.coffeeworksleeprepeat.com for hosting this linkie and all her lovely contributors.

Big Little Lies, Girl Power for IWD and a dress code.

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I had something a little different this week to my normal Mum duties, a mystery invitation from work.   The event turned out to be a thank you and celebration at our local Hotel du Vin, it included afternoon tea (disappointing cakes but fabulous scones!) served with some bubbles, a work presentation and then a cocktail master class and wine tasting.  The cocktails were a lot of fun whilst the wine tasting was more sophisticated and earnest; all were done in a stunning venue and  a lovely gesture to recognise the work we are doing. Apart from this surprise it was a another happy week in the Sparkles household, life is ticking along nicely and I believe there’s a lot to be thankful for in these ordinary weeks.

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I read one of the best books I’ve read in ages this week, Big, Little Lies by Liane Moriarty, it even made soft play nearly bearable.  The tv adaption is currently being advertised for Sky Atlantic and the casting looks perfect.  It is a brilliant story centred around the mums of a kindergarten class, you can identify the tribes but its got some very strong story lines too.  Its definitely one of those books you are either reading, working out when you can fit in your next chapter or thinking about the characters and trying to predict the end.
Little Miss and I have finally finished Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone too this week. We have read aloud every single word between us at bedtimes. Little Miss is mesmerised by the story and its been a delight and privilege to read it with her.  It was so special to rediscover JK’s magic and I feel that I learnt even more of the story rereading it.  there are parts which were so different for me now I am a Mum, the Mirror of Erised was heartbreaking.
WATCHED
Its been a busy week so apart from the Replacement I’ve little tv to report on.  However this week I was preparing an assembly on International Womens’ Day and found a number of inspiring video clips.  The favourite was the reworking of the Spice Girls Wannabe video from 2016, its brilliant and a great way of highlighting girls rights around the world.
MADE
No exceptional makes this week from me, on the cookery front it was a week of our family favourites in the kitchen with no new recipes and we didn’t really do anything crafty at the weekend.
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At last I finally have something to report for the wear section!  The mystery invitation to our work’s do gave no details of the venue or event, simply a time to be in Reception for transport and a dress code of semi-formal.  Needless to say this led to lots and lots of discussion on what we were all going to wear, suggestions, trying on different outfits, frantic texting it was just like back being back on the going out days of my twenties!  In the end I wore an embroidered satin skirt, a chiffon black blouse and sheer cardigan with some pretty black pumps.  I did feel confident in what I was wearing and enjoyed the evening.
HEARD
I’ve enjoyed the Classic Acoustic Playlist on Spotify, its something a little different and nice and chilled to relax to.
AND FINALLY
Whilst my diary is getting quite busy from April, this weekend is relatively quiet.  I think it could be a garage clearing weekend and perhaps a little trip to the garden centre to think about our spring plants.  Needless to say the garden centre has an amazing coffee shop, hence my enthusiasm to visit!
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I hope everyone in the #littleloves gang has a fantastic week and thank you to Morgana for hosting the linkie at http://coffeeworksleeprepeat.com/

 

Pancakes, Faith and Exercise #littleloves

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My Favourite Trail run from Thursday

Life is pretty good at the moment.  Its a period of simple pleasures and relaxed times.  Some weeks it seems that my diary is bursting and my days are measured to the minute. However the demands on me are much more achievable at present and I don’t feel that every second of my time is taken. This has meant that over the last few weeks I have had more time to myself and have used it to look after me, with running, swimming and good nutrition all of which are making me feel pretty sparkly.  We’ve also had more time as a family, we discovered Lazerquest on Sunday which the children loved and then were able to have a lovely lunch in a stunning Italian café and patisserie.  The good times are rolling…

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Upon recommendation I started reading ‘The Life Changing Magic Art of Not Giving a F*** ‘  Unfortunately, I just didn’t like it, I persevered with it for about a third of the book but it wasn’t inspiring or interesting me, so I removed it from my Kindle.  Its very unlike me not to finish a book but I have lots of other titles waiting to be read and want to enjoy my reading, I suppose I learnt that I already know how not to give a f***!

WATCHED

Mr S and I always try and sit down together at 9pm to relax, whether it be me reading whilst he watches sport or watching a programme together.  We both enjoyed the new drama, The Replacement on BBC 1 on Tuesday evening about a maternity cover post with the replacement taking over a little too much of her cover’s life.  We don’t often agree about our choices but we’re both looking forward to the next two episodes.

I also watched Diana : Designing a Princess, a programme to accompany the fashion exhibition of her dresses at Kensington Palace.  It was really interesting to see how her clothes reflected the periods of her life.  It’s well worth a look on BBC iPlayer. 

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I think this week its just the one important make, pancakes.  I love the tradition and fun of pancake night and its one of those photos we have from every year with the children in the early days eating pancakes in their high chairs and now having a go at flipping them.  For me its always lemon and sugar as my topping.

WORE

I’ve had a really good week exercising, 3 outdoor runs and 2 swims so my wear this week must be my exercise clothes, a practical Speedo costume for swimming and capris, running top and sweatshirt for the runs.

HEARD

The new Stevie Wonder song Faith is my favourite dancing around the kitchen tune of the moment.  Its also on the Sing soundtrack so is a firm family favourite, we play the Sing and Trolls soundtracks a lot in my car.

AND FINALLY

Its a busy Saturday this weekend, sports practices and parties but we’re looking forward to a family day on Sunday.  We’ve discovered the indoor skate park and Lazerquest in recent weeks which have wowed the children so I quite like the challenge of finding another new activity.  Hope you all have a lovely weekend and enjoy new adventures.

I’m linking up with Morgana at http://www.coffeeworksleeprepeat.com for this week’s Little Loves.