I’ve never done a proper family photoshoot before. I guess because in my mind they are always awful. No offence if you like those dreadful staged photos on a cheesy background, where you’re all lying on your fronts with your heads resting in your hands, they’re just not my thing.

We’re going to be moving house soon, (once the vendor finds her stupid gas safety certificate and we can finally set a date), and looking around the house where we are now I’ve realised that all of our family photos are at least five years old.

On the one had this is fine – I looked much younger and thinner then, and the girls had cute chubby cheeks – but it’s starting to feel a bit weird, like perhaps the last few years haven’t actually been real?

I decided that a new house should mean a new start photo wise, and so reluctantly I have been taking down the photos of Belle dressed as an Easter bunny, ready to put up more recent ones.

But what to do about a shoot that wouldn’t mean us looking like this??

family photo shoot

Image – 

(Apologies if this is you and your family but seriously, what were you thinking with those baubles and Dad casually holding a gift?!)

Cue Liam from Life is Crawsome and his super cool drone.

Nothing could be further from the Christmas bauble awfulness than spending the afternoon in the middle of a forest, lying on the floor while a drone hovers above you taking pictures.

Life is Crawsome family photo shoot

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We had book group at my house last night. It’s my very favourite sort of book group because it goes like this:

  • 8pm: We choose our drinks
  • 8.05pm: We eat crisps
  • 8.10pm: We chat about children, work and random stuff we’ve seen on the TV
  • 9pm: We ate a selection of small cakes
  • 9.05pm: We talk some more about things that aren’t to do with books
  • 10.20pm: We give the book a mark out of ten and set the date for the next meeting
  • 10.30pm: Everyone goes home to bed

It’s ace.

Last night, conversation got onto avocado hand, which led to one book group member revealing that she was banned from using the mandolin at home. I told everyone that sometimes I accidentally grate my fingernails in with the cheese, but I don’t think that was quite the same, so then I was quiet again.

Anyway, it got me thinking about middle class injuries. You know the sort of thing I mean – you get a little scratch on your eyeball when your electric pepper grinder backfires? You iPad drops on your face when you’re watching House of Cards in bed?

There are some very funny middle class injuries out there, so I thought I would compile a selection of my favourites from Twitter for you. Be warned – I am not responsible for any accidents that happen whilst reading this list, so hold your phone tightly. View Post

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I may be 40 next year (gah!), with two pretty much grown up children, (double gah!), but there are a few things that I still don’t quite seem to have got to grips with when it comes to adulting.

My knife collection is one of these things. (As in kitchen knives, nothing suspect.)

For about the last twenty years I have had one Good Knife. It was in a box full of random kitchen junk that I bought at an auction for about two pounds. It’s a large serrated knife with a wooden handle and it has seen me through some tough times. It works as my bread knife, my… er… actually I’m not sure of any of the other knife names to be honest.

Suffice to say that for a long time that knife has met all of my chopping needs.

And then there comes a day, (around the time that you start the process of buying your first home and decide you want more for yourself), when you realise that that one knife is HOLDING YOU BACK. That knife is why you still feel like you’re waiting to decide what you want to be when you grow up. That knife is why you don’t have enough in your pension fund, or a car with working windows. Damn it. If only you had decent knives, you’d be a real grown up and accomplish real grown up things.

Well.

Check me out NOW with my Robert Welch Signature Compact Knife Block.

Robert Welch knife set

Now I’ve got no excuse have I?

I think knives are once of those things that you don’t realise are missing from your life until you have proper good ones. You just get by, crucifying chicken breasts as best you can and avoiding buying swedes or watermelon because you know that cutting them up will be just TOO MUCH.

Not any more! View Post

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Jon from The Money Shed is back today to tell you all about a really useful social media scheduling tool for bloggers called SocialOomph. I have used SocialOomph in the past and it’s definitely worth checking out if you want to save time promoting blog posts.

how to schedule social media updates

Image by Lenka Horavova/shutterstock

It can’t just be me that dreads having to schedule their social media can it?

It doesn’t matter if you run a website, a blog or anything else in-between, one of the most time consuming things you will end up doing is scheduling your social media.

No matter if it’s Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram you will end up driving yourself mad each week as you schedule your updates to make sure that you have all your bases covered and your blog posts can get promoted to as many people as possible.

THOSE DAYS ARE OVER!!!

SocialOomph is an amazing service which takes the manual side of scheduling social media updates so that you can spend more being creative elsewhere. View Post

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We were at my Mum’s for tea at the weekend. (Roast chicken – very nice.) It was the Sunday at the end of the half term week. I was on my second glass of red wine. (It had been a long week.)

‘What did you get up to over half term then?’ my Mum asked Belle.

‘Not much really,’ Belle replied.

I spluttered a bit.

‘Not much??’ I said, wondering why I had bothered to do ANYTHING AT ALL.

‘Okay,’ said Belle, ‘what did we do then?’

‘Well,’ I said, ‘we went to the races and you doubled your pocket money*, we had a day in London, we went for a day out and a picnic with Rin and her twin babies, and we took your friends to a theme park, and we went to the cinema??’

‘Yeah,’ said Belle, ‘but that was all.’

Jesus Christ.

So yeah, that was all we did, so nothing to see here.

Seriously though, I thought we actually had a lovely half term and did a lot of stuff, despite what Belle says. I’m not sure what she was expecting exactly – a cruise around the Norwegian Fjords perhaps? Afternoon tea with the Queen??

We were very lucky actually, as we had been given a Kia Optima Sportswagon to try out for the week, which was a bit lush, so everything we did, we did in total comfort. It was interesting to try it out actually, as a couple of weeks ago we had the Hyundai i30 to test drive and they are very similar in terms of their basics functions and features. I did a bit of research and discovered that the Kia is basically meant to be the sporty, feisty big sister, whereas the Hyundai i30 is the more subtle, elegant, middle aged aunt.

This felt about right to me.

Kia Optima Sportswagon View Post

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