Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Random Acts 1-5

.... of Kindness Day 1 to Day 5
Day 1 - Ella giving some money to a busker near Waterloo Station.
Day 2 -Meeting with the foster social worker - because this is one act of kindness that will go long beyond 40 days :)
Day 3 - Gave Joshua the money for a taxi to physio so that he didn't have to aggravate his injury any more with 2 long walks :) (okay, so the photo isn't the actual taxi, but hey, perfect choice after our trip to Tower Bridge this week!)
Day 4 - lent Ben some money so he could help out a friend in need.
Day 5 - Putting some shoes in the shoe bin today :)

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Trip to London

As it's half term this week we decided to take a day out of a very busy week and spend a day together in London. Ben couldn't join us as he had to work so it was Jeff, Joshua, Ella and me. As always things weren't perfect. I mean, who would think that in the 21st century you could find a kiosk that doesn't take cards? And it wasn't my fault the bus route had been changed lol! It was a long day, and by the end of it I was literally crying with the pain in my foot and was up half the night with pain - really must go back to the hospital. Just a selection of photographs. The main attraction we were going for was Tower Bridge. Loved the architecture, I am a fan of buildings - but tbh, it's just a bridge LOL! The glass walkway was interesting. I'm sorry but the reason the earth is covered is so that you don't look down at an expense of falling! Everyone else loved it, just me being my usual wimpy tart that didn't appreciate it ;)

Friday, February 20, 2015

To the Institute of Economic Affairs ......

I was pointed to this article this evening. One would expect more from such an organisation. There are actually 2 issues - and maybe another day I'll address the costs of childcare - having run 2 private day nurseries I know a little about that! However, for now, what caused an unexpected Friday night blogpost? Five words  'Informal arrangements such as childminders' ! Seriously, yes, you read that right. So of course, email flew straight out my inbox .......

'Dear Ms Goodwin,

I was pointed towards your short article on the above, dated 19th February 2015.
I am a NNEB qualified childcarer, with 30 plus years experience, have owned 2 private day nurseries, have a Playwork L3, and the DTLLS qualification which enables me to teach childcare and playwork to others. I am in the process of setting up as a training provider and am just completing the process to hopefully become a foster carer. I also have 2 step-children, 3 birth children (one with ADHD) and an adopted child (with complex special needs).

However, as I want to childmind the above makes no difference, not a single jot, not a measly iota. I have to, please note have to it is not optional, jump through a never-ending hoop .......
  • Attend a pre-reg evening with the LA Early Years
  • Attend and pass a 12 week course certifying me as a childminder
  • Attend a 12 hour Paediatric First Aid Course
  • Register with the ICO
  • Create policies and procedures
  • Follow the EYFS in relation to Learning Journals and goals
  • Register with Ofsted
  • I have also completed a Food Hygiene Course.
  • Etc. Etc. Etc.
All this in spite of my experience and qualifications. Could you please therefore explain to me how in any sense of the word 'informal' chilldminding is an informal arrangement as I would love to know!
I await your response.'

Wonder if I'll even get one?
Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Random Acts....

...of Kindness. Today is Ash Wednesday, and although I'm pretty much a lapsed Catholic for various reasons, Lent is still a good time to make a difference. So starting today I am planning to do 1 act of random kindness a day for 40 days, after all, every little helps :)

So, Day 1, is Ella giving some money to a busker near Waterloo Station :)

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Sunday catch-up

And yet another week has gone
to where I've not a clue.
The only thing that I'm most sure of
is I haven't spent it with you!
With the foster panel date getting near
we're seeing the S/W almost each day.
She's taken notes and notes and notes
of just about everything we say
My Jeff was oh so very ill
in hospital I thought he'd end up.
The doc said he knew what was wrong
and made him pee in a cup
He did some tests just to check
there was nothing more serious amiss.
Poor Jeff was anxious about the results
a prostate exam is not top of his list!
No prodding or poking is needed
thankfully the tests were clear.
The sound of Jeff cheering
was really loud round here!
Went to an Enchanted Market
and took Ella for a treat.
Had a stand for my shoes at a busy prom fair,
that was hard on my feet!
Helping Ben with sorting his future
And this week his SAT's are in.
So now we have to sit and wait
for a uni or college to want him.
Received some belated Christmas presents
as Dad and Sandra came up for the night.
I got a beautiful Next dressing gown
snuggly and warm so that's all right!
Food hygiene course completed;
Joshua back to playing football;
Never-ending childminder homework;
Life's busy in this house for us all!
Laterz! xx
Wednesday, February 04, 2015


SABBSD!! Weird right? When I was growing up (in the 60's) my Mum never swore - still doesn't (I don't take after her then lol!) But she did say these initials one after another. Apparently they replace swear words! I never knew what they stood for, but I'm assuming probably pretty tame words compared to the colourful language used today :) ......... and yep *hangs head in shame* too often used by me.

Anyhow, the reason for swearing? Pottering around this morning and suddenly realised it's the first Wednesday of the month - where did January go????

So I had nothing planned, no words of wisdom, no 'aha' moments, not even a joke or a quote! I know, no quote? I must be busy. But on the IWSG facebook page I noticed someone ask about writing software and I got the 'aha' moment! When I joined NaNoWriMo for the first time I had a free trial of Scrivener. I didn't honestly think it would make a huge difference, but at the end of the free trial I purchased it. I love the simple format, love the post-it notes, the fact that I can see all my chapters and bounce around. I can't comment on the other systems out there, but if you get a chance to try Scrivener I recommend it :)

On a final note - please ignore any spellings, typos, or whatevers, throwing this post together before I shoot out. Oh, on a final, final, note over 3 days last month I visited over 60 blogs, and had just over a third return. Now I know it shouldn't be I  visited 60 why didn't 60 visit me - or even 50, 40, 30, 25.... But it is about sharing and caring, so come on, let's feel the love and do unto others as they do unto you :) (Plus, I thought my Dr Seuss mock-up was worth a visit lol!)
Monday, February 02, 2015

January Round Up and a Photo a Day

Well I managed a whole month of photographs, only 11 to go LOL! A glimpse into our lives aside from the fostering process, doing the childminding course, decorating shoes, and 101 other things that is making our lives manic atm!
1. Perfectly perfect quote for the start of the year.
2. Planning for 2015 in my favourite meditative space.
3. Picture of yours truly for Linkedin - networking!
4. Just a glimpse of the big plans for this year.
5. Shared a bit of crafting - gift for the Center Parcs girls.
6. Wallpaper on my laptop, one Christmas I will spend it in a setting like this.
7. I just love the work from Strangeling, but unless I win the lottery, I'll have to make do with a print - also bought one for my soul sister - I really must get that sent to her LOL!
8. Ella loving her new hat - one of the things on her Christmas list here - remember the kind of list every kid should write?
9. More planning - I am just beyond excited where this year is heading.
10.Budgeting for Christmas 2015!
11. Changed my facebook profile during the memorial afternoon, not saying I agree with what Charlie Hebdo print, but we live where we do have freedom of speech.
12. Hmmm, know a few people that could learn from this quote ;)
13. Joined NEYTCO - new organisation supporting trainers of early years.
14. On my 100 things to do - a candlelit bubble bath - bliss!!
15. To read at least 12 books is also on the list. Actually wasn't overstruck with this book. Some of it was interesting, but I never felt attached to the main characters, and for me personally that's a must.
16. Poor Jeff had the worst toothache, his mouth actually swelled up twice as much after this photo :(
17. Went and helped out at Front of House for the Quince Players.
18. Watched Ben playing football.
19. Another quote - you know how I like quotes!
20. Another pair of shoes - quite enjoyed jazzing up a ballet style pair of shoes.
21. New banner I made for Linkedin - tried to cover the 3 main areas, childcare, training and shoes.
22. Went out for lunch with Ariane and couldn't resist a very naughty hot chocolate - yummm!
23. My first attempt at yoga - will definitely go again - and that was also on my 100 things to do this year!
24. Also had a game of table-tennis with a friend. First time for years, let's just say there's serious room for improvement lol!
25. Martha and Orla holding their made-to-order dolls we got them for Christmas - they're based on the outfits they wore as flower girls for us :)
26. Had some of the Center Parcs girls over for a drink on a Monday night - how decadent!
27. Ella showing off the cheese scones she made at school.
28. Registered for the third year to do the A-Z Blog Challenge - love the sunflower representation :)
29. My man and me out for lunch :)
30. Ella off for a weekend courtesy of the Kids Charity and the local council. A treat for both her and us :) And as I didn't have to be on call for Ella, or get up early on Saturday, decided to get out the cider Jeff had bought for me to enjoy at Christmas! Better late than never :)
31. Budgeting for February.