Sunday 23 December 2012


I'd like to wish all my lovely, loyal commenters and followers a peaceful Christmastime. It's a hard time of year for many - so for those people I hold you close in my thoughts.

May your turkey be moist, your sprouts not too soggy and your cracker jokes hilarious.

I'll more than likely be back twixt The 25th and the New Year!
Till then - Jingle all the way! By the way - saw this on twitter and this has made me chuckle all day!

Lots of love
Jolly Toe-Bells xxx

What's your elf name?

Wednesday 19 December 2012

If you need a laugh ...

My poor neglected blog...
Last Friday I wrote, on my phone, a witty round up of my happenings. And during attaching a photo somehow vanished it all.

So I am gingerly back with something I had to share. It's the funniest thing I have read in a long time. I am going to investigate this blog further.

Here is the link. I strongly urge you to click it, or copy n paste it into your URL if it's unclickable. ( Which quite often happens when I use mobile Blogger.)

Also, visit the bathroom or strap on the tena. You will need it!!

Thank you Brandi, who's Twitter TL I found it on and many thanks to the author!!

Merry Christmas Everyone :-)

Love from me x

PS. I'd like to say a big hello to my newest follower Donna! Also thanks to all my other followers for reading and commenting. I love all my bloggy chums x Looking forward to spending some time on your blogs when I eventually finish work for the holidays!

Wednesday 12 December 2012

1 2. 1 2. 1 2

No, I'm not testing testing. It's the last time this repetitive date will happen. Someone ( about 45 people so far ) on Twitter told me!

Well this week, my HG and I celebrated 20 years together! I had started a post full of stats to the amount of actual time that equated to. But I got bored! In a nutshell, it is a LONG time!! The secret to our success so far? 19 years of being engaged!!

It's the Infant Nativity at work today; we KS2 folk get to watch the dress rehearsal - so no lesson planning for me today! I have masses of assessments and paperwork to do though - so the doddle it appears to be, actually isn't so.

Christmas Tree update : My firstborn STILL hasn't returned home from uni, so my tree is still in the loft :-(. Friday is the day when my cupboards/fridge will be emptied locust style, we will run out of loo roll, the electricity meter will start whirring madly, and teenage calm will be lost!
On the plus side I will be finally able to watch The Vampire Diaries!! I have it stored on the planner. It's ( one of ) my guilty pleasures! Looking forward to a Girly TV fest with my girl.

Looking forward to putting my tree up too! I love it almost as much as my children! Infact, when it's up and they are being typical teenagers, don't ask me to choose!!

Baby it's cold outside, so wrap up warm, stay safe and I'm going to trot out my favouritest ever joke!

Two snowmen in a field. One says to the other,
"Can you smell carrots?"

Sunday 9 December 2012

A brief week in photos

Been so busy at home and work, not having the time to blog properly. But I have been in the kitchen. I made my first mince pies , with marzipan and all week have found my first love; making chocolate lollipops with my class for the Christmas fair. So here are a few photos from my week! Plus a sneaky peak at some work in progress. I've been trying to keep up and comment on everyone's blogs. I love reading what you have all been up to x. Chocolate
lollipop anyone?

Saturday 1 December 2012

Brought back down to Earth with a bump!

Well, after yesterday's shenanigans with the mascara, the Christmas season began well....with the remnants of yesterday's mascara! I TOLD you I couldn't be faffed with the whole make up palaver. So I simply washed away the dark smudges and reapplied over the top! Jobs a good 'un!

Still, it was nice ( though I find it uncomfortable ) to get compliments.. ......... < Inert sound clip of needle being dragged quickly off a record >

Fast forward to today.

It was cold. I was layered up.
" Your cream tights are all wrinkled." Declared my HG.

Aghast, I told him I'm not WEARING ANY TIGHTS!!!

I had black leggings on under my dress
and some dark slip on shoes .... The wrinkly garments he was referring to
were my ANKLES!

Guess I have neglected them, I will bust out the moisturiser forthwith!!

Happy December the 1st folks! I've been to one of my favourite spots on this Earth!

The photos are from this place! One of  the photos is from my latest celeb tweet! The baubles are my annual purple bauble purchase! The light does not do them justice! I'd love the polar bears and the penguin in my garden! Also LOOK at that topiary! How ridiculously fantabulous are they?

If I win the lottery tonight ......

What a magnificent beast!

Mooooooo! Frankly, I find this one disturbing! I SWEAR it moved....

This is just beautiful. I WANT a penguin. WANT.

These are beautiful in real life. All sparkly and purply..

This little piggy went the posh Garden centre with the posh Farm shop....

Just a teeny snap shot of all the gloriously glittery glamour!

How was your day?!

Friday 30 November 2012

Frosty Friday

What a lovely, cold couple of days it's been. I love the frost. It's stayed frosty all day, hence the title.

Well, I caused a 'stir' at work today, nay, a sensation!

Actually I didn't. It was a MUFTI ( WTF does that stand for anyway?) DAY for the children - payment is something for the tombola for the Christmas Fair next week. Out of date sardines anyone?

So entering the spirit of the day I decided to go mad and wear mascara. Plus the tiniest slick of brown eye liner. That's IT. Nothing more, nothing less.

I know. Shocking behaviour. But I did.

Not only that I washed my hair. Not only THAT, I dried it.

The combination of these two things caused uproar when I walked into the classroom. An audible gasp was heard. It was exactly like when Jane took her glasses off in that Neighbours episode!

Ok. I admit I am exaggerating. But the next two bits are true. One young chap in Y6 called over
"'Ere, Miss, have you got some of that er er eyeliner stuff on? "
I replied I had actually!
He then, without snark, sarcasm or mickey taking answered,
" I just wanted you to know that I'd noticed!"

I was laughing my head off on the inside, I just smiled at him on the outside ! Bless him!

Then after school one of the lovely site supervising team remarked that I looked really nice today, really lovely, what had I done? I was laughing as I said I washed n dried my hair. She said, really? You look different. I said oh I've got ONE coat of mascara on. Now she is fully made up everyday with huge sweeping lashes. She is really sickenly pretty too. She was all, you should wear it more often, you look good - then we were laughing as I was saying , oh- as opposed to dog rough everyday???? She was laughing, digging her hole further , in reply to my I can't be arsed with make up remark, that you do get past it when you get older I suppose!!!

It wasn't offensive, it was a really funny LOL moment!! I'll be teasing her about it next time I see her!!

I was also covered in chocolate today as we started making the Christmas lollipops for the fair. I had got it up my arms, down my side, on my chin(s), on my top etc!! But they are looking good. I will take some photos next week when they are done.

So want to see what all the fuss was about?? Honestly, there's not much there at all. I do have the world's shortest eyelashes too!! Dodgy lighting not v flattering!!

If you comment, I just want you to know, that I DO notice!! Hehehehehe!

Tuesday 27 November 2012

It's a bit of a waffley post.

It's almost the end of the year.

And I cannot WAIT.

I love this time of year. No, actually I do. I know I know, I do moan about the dark mornings and the dark nights and the rain etc.

I rarely moan about the cold. I like the cold. I am going to moan for a sentence or two about work. Or more about the temperature at work. They've had a total overhaul of the heating system and the electrics. People who read this need to know, it's like GOING INTO A BLAST FURNACE EVERYDAY. It's like going to the centre of a volcano everyday. It's like going to the Sahara everyday. It's like going to the middle of a scotch bonnet bird's eye chilli. It's like going to the surface of the sun itself.
It is NOT my age, so please do NOT ask am I entering my periwinkle phase!!
I think the School finance manager may drop down dead on the spot when she gets the heating bill- that's if she's not died already from being flash roasted at a billion degrees centigrade in her office.
It is November.
I'm going to work in a thin short sleeved t shirt and bare legs. It's TOO FRIGGING HOT. I cannot BEAR it. I'm falling asleep.
I feel like I'm hibernating in a nice warm bear cave. The children are sick, dropping like flies. If I wake up with a raging cough tomorrow I won't be surprised. The germ soup in the atmosphere is almost palpable. In Y3 French today we learnt 'Je tousse' - I have a cough, 'J'ai le fievre' - I have flu and alsorts of others at their request that we can add to our conversations! J'ai mal a la tete! J'ai mal a le ventre ( think that one is spelled wrong n maybe should be feminine - but it means I have tummy ache!)

I'm rambling now but OMG I LOVE my Y3 class. I teach them RE, they adored Papa Panov, ( I will break their little hearts next week with The Little Matchgirl ), Music - glorious at it, PHSE- we are all going to be responsible citizens in touch with our feelings and French. We are not going to be in touch with the French. French is the fourth subject. Though should they WANT to get in touch with the French, they will do so with ease.

They are FANTASTIQUE at it. So quick, such eagerness. I can go off track ( like today's doctors surgery role play ) and back to the scheme very easily.
We played colours bingo. They only learnt colours for the first time last week. They ALL know, confidently, TWELVE colours.

I think they are just brilliant! I think they like me too! They behave for a start!

But although I moan about the unrelenting heat at work, I love the sound of Nativity rehearsals going on. It's the Christmas Fair at the end of the week and each class make crafts to sell. I've already broken out the glitter. I bloody love the stuff! I will mostly be helping make chocolate lollipops on Friday. Fingers crossed they work out please! ( Edible glitter has been bought!)

My piece de resistance this week was the Fully Interactive Optical illusion display outside our classroom. So eager were the children to get 'hands on' before it was finished, I had a private joke with myself and spoke the words out loud 'Move along please, nothing to see here!'

Cracking myself up again!! I tried to get some photos - was difficult to get child free ones! - It really is better in real life!

Just hope that one day Harry will be able to play with all this sort of equipment. Count your blessings today people.
Rachel xx

Thursday 22 November 2012

I was asked to do an interview!

I was asked to do an interview by a fellow blogger and author J T Dougan. I 'met' him on The Twitter and here are his Q and my A! It's also published over at his blog
He has a full series of 'Tucker meets...' And I was truly honoured to be invited!

"1. Back to the Future - If given the chance, what would you go back and change, if anything, in your life?

I'd definitely make sure my legs were longerer and more slenderer like a gazelles.

2. Putting your feet up - Where do you see yourself in 20 years’ time?

In my dream slate cottage in the Western Lakes, in front of a roaring fire after a tramping the fells with my
HG and my copious grandchildren!

3. Big Brother or I'm a Celebrity... - Which of the reality TV shows would you like to appear on and why?

None of the above!! Ever.

4. Prime Minister for the day - You have been made Prime Minister for a day and have been allowed to make or change 6 policies. What would you do?

a) bring back corporal punishment
b) bring back the death penalty
c) life would mean life
d) hard labour and boot camps compulsory for the Abso types
e) All thieves should have digits removed one at a time for each crime committed and murderers should be killed by psychopaths kept especially to dispatch them in the EXACT same was they murdered their victim.
F) people arrested for murder, but withhold the whereabouts of the body should be tortured for the information.

5. Worth the divorce - Who is your celebrity crush?

Easy! Brandon Flowers! My HG knows his place in the pecking order of things!!

6. Soggy Veg – Who would you gladly slap around the head with a wet lettuce?

The woman who says "Would you like to try my 'SEUPE' ? In the Ryvita advert. It's SOUP NOT SEUPE. Grrrrrrrrr

7. I didn’t, did I? – Have you ever woken after a good but drunken night out and suddenly remembered something embarrassing from the night before?

I have.

Ohhhh you want a full and frank confession do you??

Ok, I was at a Lancashire Hotpots gig. I'd drunk A LOT of special coke. Afterwards me and my friend hung around to say hello to them. I was VERY falling overly drunk. It was great. They are brilliant lads. We had our photos taken with them.

Lying in bed early the next morning, the room swimming. I shivered as I recalled that I had to one of them
asked where do you live? He replied St.Helens.

I recalled and recoiled in horror at the memory.

To my shame, I SANG to them the jingle off the TV advert.
St. Helen's glass ,dum dum , has the class!

Fast forward a couple of hours. My friend called to pick something up. We had a right giggle as we talked about the gig, how we'd dared her to sit at the drum kit for a photo, about my singing...

Then she dropped the bombshell. She cackled amid hysterics that I'd danced for the Hotpot too. I'd fecking what?????
My HG came to the front door to see what the commotion was. He confirmed what she'd revealed! They then proceeded to show my incredible dance moves as I sang the St. Helen's glass song. I can only describe it as demented Flapper. I swirled my hands round in circles and did charleston legs. They were HOWLING at the memory. I was by now having flashbacks. CRINGE!
I am NEVER EVER drinking again!!

8. Forgive me Father, for I have sinned – Anything you’d like to confess?

I devoured the Twillight Saga books, borrowing them off my teenage daughter meaning WE had read them before they went global! And I know all the words to mmmm bop by Hanson. SUCH A TRENDSETTER!!

9. No way! – Something about you that would surprise people

I actually don't like pies despite looking like I ate them all!

10. Long arm of the law – Have you ever done something that could have got you arrested or has got you arrested?

I will refer you back to Q4 for a glimpse into my thoughts on lawlessness. I have NEVER broken any law of any land EVER. I would DIE if the police ever knocked at my door for me or mine. There are no grey areas as far as I am concerned . You are either law abiding or not and if you get caught, then the punishment should be severe.

Thanks for asking me these questions! I hope you are enthralled with my answers!!

Rachelradiostar :-) "

Because I know some of you are like me and love answering good questions - join in! Come on FrugalMummy, Amanda, Kate, and Nan! You know you want to!!

Friday 16 November 2012

Has this happened to you?

( Disclaimer - Yes, I know I have posted not one but TWO versions of this in Harry's Birth story but it's MY blog and it makes me laugh so there! )

Please note there are no fullstops in the next paragraph. This is intentional. I suggest you take a really big breath if you read using punctuation.

The  DIY Brazilian....step by step guide

  • OOOH dear should have had a wee 4 hours ago when I was at work,
  • Nevermind, I ll make it home
  • see house and start speed walking towards path
  • skip a bit towards door
  • why did you hold on till now and oh bugger,
  • where's my bloody keys,
  • check coat pocket,
  • check other coat pocket even though you always keep them in the OTHER coat pocket - the one you checked first.
  • pull out bus tickets, 2p coins, manky tissues
  • inwardly squeeeze and simulataneously press legs together and stand up straight
  • say hi to neighbour and hope to buggery they don't want a chat
  • give up on pocket search
  •  rummage desperately in handbag,
  • tip handbag upside down, find keys and bring them up into the light triumphant, like Golum and his ring,
  • grasp keys hurriedly,
  •  stuff everything back in bag, sit on garden wall if you are lucky enough to have one
  • hope when you stand up there isn't a little dark ' butterfly print' because neighbour is getting shopping out of car
  • and compose yourself for a second
  • oh need a wee need a wee
  • fumble with keys
  • can't get the key in door,
  • cross legs
  • bend knees
  • squint eyes
  •  clench pelvics
  •  oh for crying out loud key get in the effin lock
  •  dance dance jiggle dance
  •  nearly break key trying to wrench it out
  • half hop half run into house
  • and slam door behind you
  •  much swearing
  •  re open door and extract coat out of door
  • much more swearing as you do this
  •  shut door again
  • cross legs run sideways past all the crap in the hall ( windows, doors, skirting boards, radiators, corrugated steel - all DIY projects in the waiting )
  • run up stairs like Linford Christie
  • ripping your coat off 
  •  swear profusely as your arms get stuck
  •  pause to dance riverdance routine on landing
  •  legs triple wound round each
  • bob up and down while turning like you are a ride on a carousel
  • stand up really straight, everything tightly pressed and calm yourself for about a second
  •  ALL your pelvics  are clamped as tight as they can go
  • ( Mine are clampable due to two 'cut 'n' shut' babies)
  • whilst singing  to your self in a tuneless manner now ooo come on come on ooooo
  • the effort is making beads of sweat glisten on your top lip
  • I think they are beads of sweat in the nether regions
  •  then shuffle
  • legs twisted and feet together into the bathroom desperately  yanking down undergarments
  • only to remember milliseconds too late that
a) Mother Nature is with you
b)  You are wearing something that is
 super duper
freshness included
cotton soft
feels like velvet
 ultra wide
Ultra soft
Ultra comfortable
Ultra amazing
Ultra winged
  These are not just any ordinary wings, these are
super glue
non slip
non moving
 they stay in place
EVEN when we all are busy doing these things just once a month. I don't know about you, but I am usually kept busy with
tennis matches
horse riding afternoons
 parachuting displays
disco dancing
Skipping to work
laughing with friends
all of the above activities I  do in  my skin tight white trousers


c)  Lush,  lush, torrid, thick undergrowth, a Lady garden of  extreme unruly natural wildness. I am thinking Wuthering Heights wild. with those tendrils that wisp gently and softly down your inner thighs

RESULT- extremely painful self waxing accident. ( DAMN YOU WISPY TENDRILS!)

SO instead of that ahhhhhhhh feeling of you made it, it's more like an AAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH BODY FOR HORRRRM!!!!

Anyone else? Nope? Just me then?  Are you sure? If you comment I PROMISE not to reuse this post again!

Tuesday 13 November 2012

Arwedd Asks....The Eleven Blog Tag

Well I was tagged in the snappily titled The Eleven Blog Tag by the lovely Arwedd, who blogs at
Stepping Out In Faith.

I am so nosy so I find these chain letteresque posts fascinating!

Here are the rules -
Every tagged person has to tell 11 things about themselves
Answer the 11 questions from the person who tagged you
List 11 questions for the folk you are going to tag, and they should have fewer than 200 followers if possible
Don't back-tag.
Arwedd , I'd love you to answer my questions too!

Now I was one of those kids who participated in the largest record breaking chain letter ever in the world ever in the 1970s. Only the first time round! It had come from Blue Peter. Allegedly. Subsequent letters were somewhat dubious! I had no qualms about binning them - and I'm still here despite what the sinister sender would say would happen to the people who did not keep the chain going!

SO, I am not going to tag anyone else in - I can't properly, I'm on my phone, but if you read this and want to play along, if you pop me a comment in my lovely comment space I'll be right along to read your post! Or if you don't blog, please answer them in my comment space. X

Right, these are my eleven questions set by Arwedd.

1. What Quite Interesting fact do you know?

I know loads of quite interesting facts. It's hard choosing just one. But, did you know that when King Henry V111 was dying, his Doctors could not tell him or anyone as predicting the Monarch's death was treason and they would have been executed!

2. Do you bother with crackers at Christmas?

Good grief, of course I do! One year I made the HG go BACK into the loft, despite much protest, to find the box of cut price crackers I'd bought in the sale the previous January. He couldn't see them. I stated he was 'man looking' therefore NOT LOOKING PROPERLY, and lo and behold he did see them eventually! He reached over to get them, cracking the ceiling plaster, causing it to fall off. Christmas Eve. The most expensive crackers in the world. Costly of replacing ceiling and costly of his good will!!

3. If you could only have 3 electrical appliances in your house, which would they be and why?

Washing Machine - teenagers create towels.
Chargers - phones/laptops/etc - otherwise I wouldn't be here doing this!
FridgeFreezer- I don't have time to shop everyday and I love my ice maker in Summer.

4. What's the #1 most played song on your iPod, CD, record player?
It depends on my mood and I like to play new music a lot to learn the words! So right now, the CD played is Muse and the track is Supremecy. In the car it's Some nights by Fun.

5. What's your favourite day of the week and why?
Saturday - loads of happy memories and time to please myself.

6. What's your favourite body part and why?
Men's thighs - to stroke them of course!!
Ohhh you meant mine??? Don't have one.

7. If you could know the answer to any question, besides “What is the meaning of life?”, what would it be?
Winning Lottery numbers.

8. What would you name the autobiography of your life?
Rachel - Round, Apple shaped, Chatty, Homely, Eager to please, Loving.

9. What was the first thing you bought with your own money?
A Hi Fi. Was £99.99 and I used to give my Saturday job wages to my friend's sister as I'd ordered it out of her catalogue! Twin Deck Tape, record player and radio and GRAPHIC EQUALISER!!

10. What story does your family always tell about you?
There's loads. My mum tells of how I sat on her knee when small and declared my name would always be Rachel Radiostar as I was NEVER getting married. And then asked her if I could be a Mummy without a husband?!!!

For more - go ask Lisa!!

11. Do you have any phobias?
Moths, cows, heights, roads amongst others. It's a wonder I make it through each day!!

Thanks Arwedd, I enjoyed that! Hopefully you enjoyed reading it. So if you want a bash at this here are my eleven questions to you...
( I don't even care if you have been tagged before - if you want to answer mine, please do! )
1. First crush - who and would you now?
2. Most expensive single thing you have bought except houses/cars.
3. Your first memory.
4. What was your best subject at school?
5. Have you had your 15 minutes of fame yet?
6. Golden balls - would you split or steal?
7. What's your favourite film of all time? I'll allow you two!
8. Have you ever told a white lie - only to be found out?
9. Most romantic gesture you have given/received.
10. Do you like Marmite?
11. What's your favourite joke?

Over to you - tell me ALL about it!

Here is a lovely photo of Harry reading the latest copy of the Eye Cancer Paper sent to Lisa!

Friday 9 November 2012

Gettin' my groove on!

Well, I'm not sure I ever had one to get! But the lovely Kate at kateonthinice insisted on linking me in to this so I shall try my best!

I think events over the past four years destroyed any groove I had going on. If I'm completely honest, I am not sure I am ready yet for it to be put back into place.
Pre dark times - I had shimmied into my groove quite well! I was healthily eating mostly, full of energy doing lots of things that I liked to do best!
Going out. With friends, family, strangers! Gigging is what I love to do most. Going to see live bands just soars my soul like nothing else on Earth.

I have just missed two of my favourites due to the extremely boring medium that is money. I COULD have afforded the tickets; but we decided to be grown up and sensible ( Boo Hiss ) and just relish our memories of the last time we were there. However, I am still seething about not going! But I made the descision and stuck to it!

Because I can't actually promise to get my groove on Kate - I am going to tell some outrageous lies now about getting my groove on!

1. I am going to buy those leather jeans I always promised myself I would and will wear them every day like an aged Suzy Quattro.

2. I will back comb my hair again like Souxie Soux, wearing pale foundation, black eye make up and red lipstick in order to recapture the groove of my youth! I will tend to my hedge row eyebrows more often.

3. I will go snow boarding just for the sheer exhileration of it all.

4. I will pack myself and the HG for a picnic at sunset and dance til dawn on the beach.

5. I will join the local running club because I am a speed demon.

6. I will book that parachute jump I always said I would do.

7. I will throw away my trusty navy blue Tog 24 waterproof.

8. I will not wear it with flip flops.

9. I will not wear my Tog 24 coat and  flip flops with my sunglasses.

10. I will cease my 'Care in the Community Chic' fashion label activity at once.

11. I might more of an effort to straighten my hair. ( Since I lost it during the days of near death, my new hair has grown back curly - but not in an impossibly cute way - it's definitely a Gail Tilsley/Platt/MacIntyre off Corrie way )

12. I ran out of lies! Well I ran out of time to write anymore.

If you want to get into the groove, boy you gotta prove your love to me.... nice little ear worm for you all there!

Bye for now

Saturday 3 November 2012

I've been thinking about Christmas..

Now, I have been on Half Term. But I have been thinking about work! It's my favourite Half Term TO work. The lovely lead up to Christmas. I bloody love it!

Anyway, each year, each class make to sell, a Christmas Craft at the fair.
So I have been clicking on all the 'Pinterest' things a friend on Twitter posts. I AM signed up for the pin thing myself, but I have not played around on it enough to learn how to do it and use it to best advantage. So for now, I'm content to sit back and let Cassie do my work! We seem to have the same great taste!
Anyway, she pinned 3 fabulous ideas that I decided I will do with the class! I also have two other ideas too.
( As I am blogging on my phone - the photos will all appear at the end. )

1. The Christmas Card. Now we won't be making these to sell, but the children do make one to take home. A really simple but effective use of scrap paper, rolled, to make a Christmas Tree.

2. The background to the tree card, will be pine printed snowflakes. Again, super simple but effective. Remember I work in the top class so we are a bit past twee robins and the like!

3. Seller number 1.
Hot glue glitter tree ornaments. I can't wait to see if these work!

4. Seller number 2.
I saw this on a fabulously foodie blog

I think the children will have fun making these. I just need to source some cheaper sticks than I saw at Hobbycraft.

5.Seller number 3. Continuing the lollipop theme. In one of my biscuit books I found these Teddy lollies. It might be quite easy to make these into more Christmassy figures, but I think Teddies will go down great!

So, have you ever had any success with a particular craft at a fair that would be minimum cost to make AND easy to do with large groups of excited children?


Thursday 1 November 2012

A Bit of Baking

Hello, again!
I know, you have barely let the ink dry on your comments on my last post when here I am AGAIN! That is the beauty of Half Term!

This is a new post of something I did yonks ago. ( I know, I used the word 'yonks'. ) I want to add it onto that page tab thingy at the side of the blog. I want to change the layout round a little and add some of your blogs to a blogroll. I just have to find the right gadget thing. All of this provides me with the exact amount of procrastination I am looking for!

So, here were go, Jammy dodgers, Rachel style. I did post these originally on FB before I had this blog! I apologise for the rubbish photos. If you squint, you will get the idea!

Got these fab cutters from TK Maxx for about £2. I love it in there for all sorts of good baking stuff you don't see elsewhere.


I didn't fancy the recipe given on the box, so I turned to my trusty baking biscuits book.

First cream the butter and sugar til light and fluffy.

Stir in plain flour, cornflour and baking powder till it forms a dough. Rest for a while. You as well as the dough!


Roll out thinly onto a floured surface and using the fancy pants cutter, cut out 'some' bases.
( I am not technically accurate in my baking! )


Use fancy pants cutter, with different inserts, to cut out some lids. Hopefully, the same amount as the bottoms!

Gently pick up the lids, and pop out the middles.

Bake int oven till done. Make sure you cook the little middles too. cook's treat!

After cooling on a wire try, move the bottoms and dredge the tops with icing sugar. Note the missing middles? Like I said earlier. Cook's treat. Nom nom nom.


 After warming some good strawberry jam, place 'some' on the base and then top with the tops! Hey presto. Jammy Dodgers. These photographs really do not do them justice. Time to make start to finish? Probably a good hour. Time they last? Well I couldn't possible comment on how well they will keep in an airtight box etc because they'd all been chomped before the bloomin dishwasher had finished it's cycle!!
I've enjoyed looking at these pics again. I might make some more later today. I'll see if I can get a better photo with some decent colour!
Now to go add this post to that tab thingy.   I think it'll have to just be a series of links! How do you operate your tab thingies? Anyone?

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Reader Appreciation Award Nomination

Well, I am a bit shocked to get an award! It was unexpected, but I'd like to thank my mum, my dad etc ....

Actually I'm thanking a certain Mr Jamie T Dougan. Blog owner, author and fellow Tweep! As I'm blogging this on my phone ill have to copy and paste his link in here :-
Hopefully it'll work for you!
He has asked me some questions, then I have to keep it going by asking some of you lot!

I know some long established bloggers might get a little 'grrrrr' about these chain style blog things but I bloody love em! I am genuinely touched someone thought enough of my blog to tag me in and it totally satisfies my nosiness!! So if I tag you in at the end, please know I did it because I love reading your blog and I won't sulk if you choose not to play!

Here are my Q & A

1.Where do you do most of your writing/blogging?

My bedroom, be it freezing my wot sits off in the huge bay window, which, despite my lovely new double glazing fitted by my HG on the coldest day of the year two years ago, does nothing to keep the huge radiator less room with the open fire which does have a pillow shoved up it, warm. Or in bed on my trusty iPhone. ( Like right now )

2. Favourite book or books from your childhood?

Easy. Nip and Fluff - the books I learnt to read with. Then I loved The Great Jam Sandwich book. A lovely story about a swarm of killer bees/wasps being trapped by a great big giant jam sandwich. Kersplat and that was that. Can't recall the author, but that was the last line. My mum read it to me at bedtime for about three weeks! I'd got it from the Library. I should think she'd want to kersplat me over the head with it by the time it went back!! It was written in rhyme and I think that's why I loved it. Then Enid Blyton took me from aged six with Naughty Amelia Jane, via the Faraway Tree , Secret Seven and the Famous Five to my early double figures faves, The Twins at St. Clare's and Mallory Towers. As I lay reading by the light of the landing light, long after I was supposed to have gone to sleep, I longed, nay, YEARNED to go to boarding school. I wanted to play Lacrosse and swim in outdoor pools. I wanted to feast at midnight in a dorm. Sigh. Those books were great. Alongside them I was reading What Katy Did and what she did next. I hated Katy. Hideous girl I thought. Black Beauty. Stig. Then I discovered Judy Blume. Are you there God, it's me Margaret? was just BRILLIANT. Her books reached out to me in some way and I read them all. Every week I was at the Library wanting more! Other book memories include the illicit borrowing of my friend's mum's copy of The Thorn Birds. It went round the whole class. You didn't have to read it to find the juicy bits, it fell open at them! I went through the whole Flowers in the Attic series and Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I even used to read my mum's extensive Catherine Cookson library!! I think it's safe to say that I was an avid reader - I know I've missed loads out!

3.Who is your favourite fictional character?

There are too many from books for me to choose from so I will choose from TV/FILM. Forrest Gump number one. There are two Blanches on my list. One was Dreary Barlow's mum in Coronation Street. Blanche Hunt. The other from The Golden Girls, Blanche Devereaux.

4. Have you ever Googled yourself and been shocked at what you found?
No I have never googled myself! Shall I go do it now? Be right back! ....

Well got to page 4 and gave up! Nothing!!

5. What's your favourite time of the day and why?

When the sun comes up. I hate the dark when I am awake. I'm not scared of the dark. Indeed, I cannot even have one chink of light coming in if I am going to sleep. But if I am awake, I need it to be light. I think I have S.A.D

6. Who would play you in the movie of your life?

Dawn French

7. One material possession that you absolutely could not live without?

Anything that contains my photos. Albums, computer, phone.

8. Have you ever been naked in public?

*shudders at the very thought*

9. What is your dream car?

Don't have one!

10. There wasn't a question 10!!!

So... Who do I want to answer the very same questions .... Descisions, descisions....

1. I'm asking a sweet chum of mine, who also happens to be a best selling author - I reviewed his book with five stars so far Mr Steve Briggs.
2. She doesn't have a specific blog of her own, she's the intended of Mr B , it's the jolly fabulous Clare Harper.
3. She lives a long way from me, but we just clicked instantly , it's the fabulous owner of a fabulous blog Mrs Vivian Pistacshio - hehehe it's what I fondly call her in my head! She blogs here
And two more
4. My bonkers friend Mrs Eyeball Breather

5. My newest kindred spirit Kate who blogs at
So all I have to do is link them in and enjoy reading their answers! Oh I need a question 10. So here it is ...... I want to know all sorts but
What/who/where was your first proper kiss?

Even if I haven't tagged you, but you fancy answering my questions please do so in the lovely big comment box! Come on - you know you want to!!!

A lovely blog and it's owner I do want to tag is
Frugal mummy blogging at
One of my must reads everyday!

Who else wants in? Xx

Tuesday 30 October 2012

10 things that make me smile

This comes from a lovely idea for a linky from the equally lovely FrugalMummy. Read her lovely post with the original link * HERE * . She requested that , in these days of doom and gloom, despite ( or perhaps ) Christmas being round the corner, she wondered what 10 things can make us smile.

Now I am a very smiley person. It's going to be hard to narrow it down to 10.  I won't post the things that made me laugh out loud for they are in a class of their own! Also, just as the Delicious Dermot on X factor says. My choices are in no particular order!

1. My Rose Tinted Glasses. I am often found to be wearing them as I think about things and memories from well, yesterday backwards to as far as I can remember! ( Going to Playschool about three years old. ) My Rose Tinted Glasses are fabulous for they only definitely work for the good memories. So one I'm smiling about now is walking my dolls parm round the park with my beloved Nanna.

2. Sitting in front of my roaring coal fire on a wet Sunday afternoon, where the rain is lashing at the windows. I am with loved ones, with my feet up, something delicious in the oven for tea and something good on the telly. Bliss.

3. My children and my Hunter Gatherer.

4. Other people's toddlers having tantrums at the checkout. I smile supportively at the poor harassed parent. I smile smugly because I have been there and done that.

5. Christmas trees twinkling in the dark.

6. Nights in with my girlfriends

7. When someone opens a gift from you and genuinely likes it. Or when I knit things for people and I see them using it.

8. When Harry smiles and says my name.

9. Getting a good bargain anywhere.

10. Hearing good things about my children from other people - be it on Parent's Evening, family or friends messages or strangers.

I've tried to keep it quite short. Otherwise I'll find myself wistfully dreaming of good things and get nothing else done! Please add your Top Ten Things that make you smile, either here as a comment, or using the linky on FrugalMummy's blog.

Rachel xx

Sunday 28 October 2012

The one where I admit to pilfering the family silver and I got away with it!


 It's coming up to the season of insane TV advertising and I recently read and instantly fell in love with a new blog. The post in question discussed stereotypical toys for girls and boys. ( Read it and my "frankly hilarious" comments *here* ).

Memory wise, I seem to have the ability to dredge up lots of facts from t'black n white days when I were a lass, growing up in the 1970s. But telling you what happened last week can be a major struggle! Sometimes I do get muddled up somewhere between the two. However, I am pretty sure what follows is mostly accurate. It's hard to type, by the light of an energy saving lightbulb, with these rose tinted glasses on!

In the 1970's I remember an idyllic childhood. Mum and Dad didn't have any spare cash. Dad worked long, hard hours to barely meet the mortgage etc. Please put down that violin! I'm not after sympathy- it was just like that for us and millions of working class folks.

Mum has said that she didn't get milk tokens or help as she only had three children under five for a couple of months.( I spoiled all that by turning five when Baby Sister was just three months old.)  I'm not sure how Child Allowance worked back then either. I know she only worked part time when I was in the Juniors.  Even so, we never seemed to be visibly any wealthier! BUT I know she went without so we could have. I know she scrimped, saved, knitted and ran catalogues for the commission to be able to afford a fabulous Christmas morning for us. They were fabulous. Every single one.
It was magical. I don't recall ever writing a list.  We didn't pester. We knew there was no point.

Besides, our next door neighbour got EVERYTHING,  so we used to just go round and play loads!
The only time at Christmas I  recall being  desperate  for something, was for a ''Muppet Show Shopping bag, just like my mum's grown up canvas bag with a ZIP ( oh the technology ). I nearly died from excitement when I got one! There is a photo somewhere of me, in a long pink nightie clutching my precious. I think I used to take it to bed!!

Other beloved toys I remember getting include a Fisher Price school desk.It had a green chalk slanted board to write on and it was magnetic so all the letters stored in the drawers could be used to write words on the little picture cards! I was so jealous of my little sister when she got an actual real blackboard/easel!, But I loved that desk, It did me, till I got my own real life proper type writer. I also had a pegboard and pegs that I adored.

Then came Sindy.

Think my dark haired one came in jodpurs with the horse.

I had two Sindy Dolls- just like the ones in the photograph, one with black hair like me. I drew eyeshadow on her pretty face with biro. Think I got a smack for that!  With the next few birthdays and December 25ths I started accrueing accessories for my Sindy. 

I had one of these. 

I found this photo on Ebay. This sold for £67!! I wish I still had mine! It opened out and had a bed, a shower and a wardrobe for Sindy. Just what every cosmopolitan travelling  plastic girl needed! £67 Oh my stars!
I had ( please don't let me down google images ) ( It didn't !)  a travel case, like the one above.

A camper tent and a horse. ( Both photos from Google Images. I bloody love Google Images!)

Now, there was a girl in my class, who's dad worked on the oil rigs. Therefore they were MILLIONAIRES. It's what we thought. We were all invited to her birthday party one year, her house was like a MANSION to me. Fitted kitchen, thick fluffy carpets, big leather sofa and a big COLOUR REMOTE CONTROLLED TV. Her room was MAHOOSIVE ( I was in a box room approx 2ft square ) ( That last bracket was a lie, but I was in the adequately sized box room ). In their bathroom they had a bath AND omg a SHOWER. Not a head connected to the taps shower, that dripped cold water onto you when you were in the bath, one  like ours. Oh no, a walk in CUBICLE one . To a girl who lived in a simply but comfortable furnished home with no frills this was like walking onto the set of Dallas! She was a Ewing whereas I was an Ingalls!! All the girls in my class went to traditional birthday parties at each other's houses. 

Ya know girls, long dresses and side ponytails 

Her party/disco was in the cellar, with the lights off,  with full on disco lights!!
I'm also pretty convinced that ( gasp ) boys were invited. That. Was. Unheard. Of to us 10 year olds. She was sooo cool! But for me, 
It was her bedroom that held the main attraction.

No, it wasn't her fancy pants bed.  The first cabin bed I had ever seen.

No, it wasn't the fact that she had a hamster in her bedroom. 

 It wasn't even the fact that she had a black and white portable TV in her room. 

AND a record player. 

No, she had something so amazing . It was this....

Look at the advertising - It was MY dream! I was impressionable back then! My career as a marketing man's dream surely began in the 70s! Look at the HOOVER!

She had The Full Sized 5ft Tall Sindy House.  Complete with roof top garden.The kitchen was to die for girls.  Stainless steel sink ( OK shiny silver plastic.) Complete with cooker that made cooking noises when you put the pans on the hob - bubbled and blipped like thick pea n ham soup does. 

Bathroom- matching suite with, blew my mind, a cubicle WORKING shower.  ( Just like HER Mum and Dad's! ) Little teeny dark brown towels. 

Sindy's bedroom was exquisite. 
Simply elegant. 
Solid white plastic, gilded with gold filigree bed,  with matching  darling blue cover and valence. Oh the poshness! The dressing table WITH mirror and stool - with cabinet table legs, again all beautifully carved. The lounge had a Chesterfieldesque leather suite all in top quality plastic. . . I WANTED IT ALL!!

Now I bet you all 10p, that it is this part of my tale,  where by you are linking the title in.
Well you are wrong!

I am getting to it, but most of you who are regular here know by know how I'll waffle round the houses to get to my point.

A while ago I wrote about Deathscalators and being in London.
On that school trip we were taken to Harrods. We all had £10 spending money I think it was - saved up throughout the school year - correct me if  I'm writing  , lovely old school chums, if you are reading.
There were these cute darling little 'Carrie' and 'Christopher' dolls. I distinctly remember Christopher because he had proper 'boy bits'!!
After researching, he did have the bits - as did she!

I think they were a fiver each. And then there were outfits for them. I'm pretty sure in remembering that ALL the girls in my class bought a Carrie/Christopher doll with an outfit. They came in a darling little terry towelling baby grow fastened with Velcro , she in pink, he in blue, natch. I bought a wee lemon sundress complete with matching knickers for my Carrie.

I'm pretty sure ALL the boys bought Slime. And one of those octopuses that walked down walls and windows.

So with the money that was left I think en masse us girls bought ;( cue remembering gasp of joy ) BABY WILLIAMS.
Look at all the Baby Williams photos I found!
I'm sure mine was like this one.

Hands up if you had a Baby William ??!! Strange but Oh so cute  little plastic headed babies with beany bodies sold in match boxes!!!
This created a kind of weird phase at school. We had those lift up lid desks, with a shelf at the top. On this shelf we ( and I know it wasn't just me ) created little apartments for our Carries, Christopher's and Baby Williams!

Again, if you are waiting for me to admit to stealing from Harrods.
You are quite wrong.

Think back to where I said we had no money back then. Entertainment was often going visiting and playing with our numerous cousins. Twelve Grandchildren on each side meant there were tons of us to go round!
I used to love to go to one house because there lived my glamorous older cousin. She had  proper blonde hair, cut in a jaunty style.  I loved her hand me downs ( though my favourite hand me downs always came from my Dad's side of the family - Maria was more bohemian whereas Diane was more M&S ) but I idolised her! Even though she was pretty mean to me sometimes!! ( Sherry trifle,  Diane, just in case you are reading! )

any meanness was completely forgiven if she 'let' me LOOK AT, not play with, but LOOK AT her Sindy stuff. 

She had the Dining Room stuff. God it was gorgeous. The same handcrafted white plastic as the bedroom stuff. The carved high back chairs, the large table with carved legs, the table mats, the plates , the tiny, perfect beautiful silver cutlery. The silver cruet set. Le sigh. Be still my beating ten years old heart.
Just Exquisite

Diane and her friend Maxine had run away from me when we were playing hide and seek or something outside.

I went back to Auntie Pat's. All forlorn. For something to do I went to the toilet.

 Diane's bedroom door was open.

 There, on the floor,  ON THE FLOOR  was the clearly unloved, unwanted, neglected spoon from Sindy's dining room.  Did I mention it was ON. THE. ACTUAL. FLOOR?  Not on the table in Sindy's dining room. Not put away carefully like I would have. Just carelessly abandoned. 

 It was just laying there, twinkling at me in all it's lovely silvery shininess.

Now MY Carrie needed a spoon in order to feed Baby William.

 So I permanently borrowed it!!

 It had a much happier life with me.  I never left it on the floor. I slept easy. No guilty conscience at all! She can't have missed it because there was nothing on Newsround about it!

So, Diane, I'd like to apologise! Firstly for you having to be saddled with a young brat following you round all the time! And for stealing the family silver! I hope you can forgive me!!

So... What toys were YOU desperate to have when you were small? What did YOUR friends have that you didn't. What family heirlooms did YOU steal?!!

I'm sure it wasn't just me. Was it?