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….. We make
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….. We nuture

Three children *** One big, grey dog *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging since January 2010.

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“A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe.”



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  • Craft Mother Interesting that you say they are more feminine. Made me stop and think. Looking around I think I see what you mean. Shape and fitting... 24 Aug
  • Craft Mother It was fun, but glad of a quieter week. 24 Aug
  • Craft Mother It was a great camp site. Fabulous location. 24 Aug
  • Craft Mother I have memories of going with my mother to the fabric shops. It's probably where my love of fabric and patterns come from. Looking forward... 24 Aug
  • Craft Mother It is amazing. 24 Aug
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Time to smile

"God has an inordinate fondness for stars and beetles."

- J B S Haldane

Debs Random Writings

Slice of Life


To badly quote. It is a truth universally acknowledged that a child at the start of their summer holiday must be in want of a few days relaxation. It is certainly true of my merry band. They all pretty much collapsed and were beyond doing much.

The first proper day off, I took two of them to the library. One refused to budge, although she loves reading. So I sent photos of the library shelves from my phone. That was enough for her to text back the books she would like me to bring home for her. She ended up borrowing the most. Sometimes, slightly devious ways have to be adopted.

(library books read and ready to go back to the library)

Youngest is the only one who can officially join in the library challenge this year. (Read six books and collect a prize) It’s for eleven year olds and below. We do it most years. Mainly as it’s such a good way to start the holiday off as we mean to go on. The other two are providing moral support by picking books from the library (either in person or from a distance) and reading along with him.

There is a lot of reading going on. Partly helped by revisiting screen time rules. Initiated by the children, which…and you may want to sit down before you read this next part….means less time but spread throughout the day.

I know. I keep checking. There is no catch and they are sticking to it.

Apart from the reading, and less screen time, they have been drawing, going through the board games and playing cards. Most of the time nicely. On my summer list is to play more card games with them. This month, I’ve taught them a couple of easy ones. Go Fish and Old Maid. To get them started. We’ll move on to something a bit more involved next.

While the children have broken up for the holiday, I have not. Fortunately, I can shut myself away in my office, at the side of the house, and appear in time to eat the muffins they have kindly made and organize meals for my ever hungry gannets growing children. When I venture back into the house, I’m greeted by a chorus of “Go Fish”, find they’ve retuned the radio from Radio 4 to Kiss, and turned the kitchen table into a card playing den.

They are growing up.

It seems my friends have kicked off their shoes and are relaxing. As I sat working at my desk, two of them texted to say they had recovered from the end of term and were in full holiday mode. Within half an hour of each other. Thanks.


My turn soon.

Having the children home has its uses. Apart from the supply of muffins. The Teen helped by taking photos of me wearing my latest handmade dress. Blue joined in too.

It is the one disadvantage of making clothes for me. I can’t be on both sides of the lens at the same time. It’s frustrating. I like the control. In the absence of a body double, I  hand over the camera and hope. I think she did well. Apart from accidently making me stand on an ant nest, it all went without a hitch.

(spaghetti squash and cucumber in abundance in the garden, Blue keeping me company in the office, latest sewing and first apples nearly ready)

They’ve enjoyed a relaxing week. Next week, I’ll take more time off and hopefully it will be a bit more active.

Joining in with #wotw

The Reading Residence
Sharing. Good idea.


They say that you don’t have to run faster than a bear, so long as you can outrun at least one of your companions. It’s meant as a joke. You should never try to run from a bear, but all the same it makes me think. Obviously, I don’t need to worry about bear encounters in the UK (I hope!), but if I did, I suspect that I would be that companion. The out-runned companion. Hello, bear.

I’ve realised that everyone else in the family has higher levels of activity than me. Youngest plays cricket twice a week and trampolining, plus the usual school sports and general running and cycling around that happens during the day when you are 10.  Generally sporty.

This week has seen the two older children join their father on their first parkrun. They’ve not settled on an after school sporty activity, this year, so I’m thrilled they are doing the run. There has been extra running during the week and a higher level of activity all round. I really don’t have to worry about them being inactive this holiday, as they are keen to carry on and try other activities.

Then there is me. I’m not totally inactive. I walk between 2-3 miles a day on the dog walk alone, plus a family hike, most weekends. This week I joined the school for a couple of miles walk across countryside, which was probably further as it’s a bit like herding cats, when it comes to walking with so many 4 to 11 year olds.

I hula hooped for 3:56 minutes (yes, the children timed me) over the weekend, before I reached my boredom threshold. I garden daily, so I’m no couch potato, but I’m not doing enough. I couldn’t join them on their parkrun. They would slow down for me.

Living in the countryside, I have to drive to most organized sport venues. The idea of swimming lengths or a gym session, followed by a 20-30 minute drive, does not appeal.

I’m starting to eye up our woods as a possible cross country running venue for me. I could persuade the children to join me on their bikes. I want to be able to run the distance. Maybe then I could join them on a parkrun, once I’ve mastered that route.

The only running I’ve been doing this week has been the usual end of term sprint (the last week has to be the hardest) as we finish off school and after school commitments. Plus a lot of running stitches on my sewing machine. I may be pushing the definition there, but I did finish the blue dress for my daughter in time to wear to a wedding, using my hand-cranked sewing machine. More calories burnt than doing the same task on an electric machine. (work with me on this one!)

So question to you all. What sporty activities do you do on a regular basis? Are you all running 5k a week? Please, I need the inspiration and motivation. Are you an out-runner or an out-runned?

The Reading Residence
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Sharing. Good idea.


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