"Although I speak from my own experience, I feel that no one has the right to impose his or her beliefs on another person. I will not propose to you that my way is best. The decision is up to you. If you find some point which may be suitable for you, then you can carry out experiments for yourself. If you find that it is off no use, then you can discard it." Dalai Lama...

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Gothic to Vintage....

Today has had a cleaning/sorting vibe :-)
I have mopped, dusted and vacuumed downstairs and Milly has been sorting and dusting her room. We had started tidying her room on Monday with the intention to break it down into small chunks through the week.
We had the unexpected company of the lovely Amy yesterday. She was unwell and off school and L had an important meeting.
 As we were at home for the day we were more than happy to look after her:-)
I made my bed so she could lay on top under a throw. Milly woke briefly as she got settled  but fell asleep again so Amy read and rested too:-) I kept checking in on her and eventually woke Milly so I could make them something to eat. They had a quiet, peaceful day together.
When Amy left we went up to start on the sorting but Milly had a headache and said she would rather do it tomorrow - even though it meant she would probably have to do it on her own as my Mum and Dad were visiting.
The reason Milly is sleeping in our room is down to the visit of the spiders when El was staying last month! We set up the blow up bed in our room thinking she would stay with us a while and then - as has happened in the past - go back into her own room. She loves her room but the spider episode had terrified her and she chose to stay in our room.
She woke one morning - having been in our room about a week or so - and said how lovely it was to wake in our room, it was so calming and bright and made her feel awake as soon as she opened her eyes
Milly's room is dark purple - designed by her  a couple of years ago. She absolutely loves her room and enjoyed the process of putting her design together, it really suited her at that time - dark and gothic.
For quite some time she has been keen on vintage fashion and design - her tastes are changing.
She asked if we could repaint her room.
 She said that having white walls would also make it much easier for her to see any spiders on them - which was a major problem with the dark purple -  although she wanted to be in her room and chose to sleep there - she was lying awake at night with a torch scared about spiders :-( 
 It is no small task to cover the dark paint on walls and furniture though!
I said we should talk to Alan about it as he would be the one doing the hard work. Being the wonderful person he is he hardly batted an eyelid and said yes, if we could find a way to afford it and if he was able to get time off work to get it done in one go rather than it taking up many weekends to do. 
So a lighter, brighter bedroom is on the cards - hence the sorting and decluttering!
Our plans are to de-clutter and sort things out this week and then next week we are away. On our return the furniture will get painted and then the following week Alan is taking time off whilst we visit El for three days so he can paint the walls.
 Off white walls and a cream colour on the furniture ( this has been a compromise by Milly as she would have preferred a duck egg blue. We have to think about the future colour changes she might want though and the amount of work/money it takes to re - do them each time )
A vintage throw ( pinks and duck egg ) and wallpaper from Next is our starting point and now that I have a better idea of the look she has in mind I will source things to complete the look on a budget. I will also try to think of a way we can get some of the duck egg colour onto the furniture that will make Milly happy but still make it easy to re - paint if the colour scheme changes in the future :-)

Monday, 20 February 2012

So, the Birthday sleepover went well... 
 Alan had taken a couple of days off work so the girls were able to sleep in the dining room on mattresses...
 We woke them at 7 ( following Milly's request ) to open presents.
Many more Monsters to add to the growing collection alongside Pushing Daisies series two and a Cd with all the Sherlock Holmes stories on to down load on to her i pod, some brush tip felt pens to add to her collection of pens. She received a lot of money which was promptly spent - over the next couple of days - on more monsters and music downloads.

I struggled to keep my eyes open after the early start but after making breakfast I had a bath and read my book whilst the girls played with the Monster highs and chatted. Then we all got ready to go out.
 Milly's request when discussing Birthday plans had been to go to Silloth to visit a chip shop cafe for  - in Milly's opinion - the best chips ever, visit the amusements and do the walk her and Alan have done in the past which takes them along the beach to Skinburness. Silloth is quite a run down seaside town but for some reason Milly has always enjoyed going. We have made many happy memories there over the years...
We had lunch in the cafe and walked along to the arcade where I gave them both a fiver to use on the machines. It was bitterly cold and as the girls had opted for fashionable wear rather than practical the walk had to wait for another day :-))

Back home and after a breather it was on to preparing the requested meal of Roast chicken for birthday tea :-)

Amy came around to drop off Milly's present and ended up staying the night :-)

We had a relaxing morning before we said goodbye to Amy and then after a late lunch we headed off to meet half way with Liz to hand El back :-)

Saturday was spent relaxing, I stayed in bed the whole day and Alan and Milly went out together for a while but generally chilled out.

Sunday was busy, I had a lot of ebay things to do listing, photographing and packing. Then Milly and I went to the Animal shelter to walk Poppy and Skye:-) Very few dogs in as they have managed to re-home 17 since Christmas! There were a couple of new dogs in, one of whom was very thin and bedraggled but was more than happy to play ball with us. I thought I would get much more attached to the dogs. I am happy to be helping out, walking them, playing with them and giving them some love and I have surprised myself that don't feel the need to take them all home! Milly on the other hand would love to have a houseful :-) We popped in to Asda for a few food items and a cossy for Milly. We are off to Centerparc for a 4 night break next week and she has grown so much her cossie no longer fits.

Today we met up With Liz, El and Catharine at Tullie house. The bridge was closed so we had to go through the millennium subway.

A lovely afternoon finished off with a nasty, windy, rainy, drive home in the dark.
 Luckily the most wonderful husband in the world had warmed up the casserole I made yesterday and cooked new potatoes and carrots so I had a nice hot meal to eat when I got in whilst snuggled on the sofa with my nightie on :-)

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Talkin' and walkin' round Whinlatter and Talkin tarn!

A valentine day meet up with old friends ended a spell of time where we haven't seen each other nearly enough. A lovely couple of hours winding our way along the play areas with swings, slides and water play.
Must get organised and ensure a regular get together is put in the diary to ensure we don't let months go by again.

A beautiful day today for a walk with more good friends round a beautiful place :-) 
Talkin Tarn holds an appeal different from the lakes around us.
I can't put my finger on what that difference is......
 Our second visit and gentle saunter on the path around the Tarn watching Charlie trying, and failing each time, to swim out to catch ducks was great fun:-) 
Trees to climb  for the kids and many other dogs to play with for Charlie.

We borrowed El for a couple of nights and said goodbye as the sun began to set.
Home for Pizza and chips.
Landmark Birthday tomorrow.  
Apparently we are getting up at 7 am to watch Milly open her presents!!! 
An early start with plans for more fresh air later in the day, this time by the sea. :-)

Sunday, 12 February 2012

On the brink of teenagedom:-)

In a couple of days we will have a teenager in the house :-)
Stage one in the celebrations today as my Mum and Dad very kindly hosted a family get together.
The most delicious roast beef and all the trimmings and Milly was in heaven. Her first mouthful of yorkshire pudding ( my Mum does do the best Sunday dinner ever! ) she sighed and said
" Mmmm...... content" :-)
Many roasties later she was a very happy and very full bunny :-)

A visit to see my Sister and Brother in laws lovely new home and then back home to flop :-)

Although I am slightly apprehensive - because teenage hood is often spoken about in such negative terms - I am also quite excited about this part of our journey.

I am not saying it won't be challenging - we have seen changes emotionally and very obvious physical growth - over the last few months and it is fair to say that some of them are hard to deal with - for Milly as well as us!
I believe that if we continue to talk, stay patient, treat each other with respect and try to find ways to stay connected, we will find our way through.
Sounds easy right ;-)))