Thursday, 30 December 2010

TWTYTW - That was the year that was....2010

Gorgeous people, it's that time of year when everyone starts making resolutions, when we look back on the year that was and the year that will/could be.  It's a time of hope, reconciliation and looking forward and making amends.  In celebration of this and in light of the fact I never keep a resolution, I have decided to look back on the year. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, my TWTYTW - 2010.
  • I finally (!) embraced social media and love it, I was even shortlisted as a finalist in the Frsh Voice in Blogging Final! -  humbled to be nominated!
  • I won a car (still not got it yet for those of you who keep asking)
  • My Beau Bo started "Big School" and I wept at the gates (with joy, freedom beckoned!)
  • I started my own business and was in profit a month after launching
  • I learnt to say "no" to people rather than being a people pleaser.
  • I de-friended people who I hadn't spoken to in the last year.
  • I learnt to accept that my husband is who he is and he won't change (nor can I make him change)
  • I accepted that I am a control freak (although I am working on that one)
  • I learnt to count to 10 in Japanese
  • I realised that the grass isn't always greener on the other side
  • Pixie started talking (she hasn't stopped since)
  • Beansey Boy had trials and was accepted to a v.good football team
  • The Rugby Club got a £5k donation thanks to the competition I was in to win a car
  • Not everyone is what or who they seem
  • I realised that not everyone is what or who they seem.
On a scale of 10, my year was a 7.  Could have been better but all in all a good year.

If you enjoyed this post, please add your linky below so we can celebrate what we have all achieved!! 

Happy New Year Everyone xx

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Win a beautiful bespoke necklace or bracelet of your choice!

December is the busiest month in my work calendar and  I attend many events in the hope of drumming up new business.  The days are long and often cold and regardless of where you are, you will always build up a camaraderie with other exhibitors, often minding each others stalls whilst you pop to the loo or grab a bite to eat.

At one such event, I had the pleasure of being next to the lovely Beatrice  from Merci Maman.   Beatrice set the business up in 2007 with the aim of creating charming, unique and personalised gifts for the entire family.  I was particularly struck by the expert craftsmanship and passion that Beatrice has for her business.  I was enthralled by the beautiful charm bracelets and necklaces presented on a simple waxed cotton braid in the colour of your choice.    The clincher for me, was the fact you could inscribe what you like!

Rather than go for the obvious, I decided to have the children's nicknames inscribed onto the heart shaped discs (you can personalise this further as lots of different shapes available). 

A few days after my order was placed, the lariat arrived in a beautiful presentation box and I immediately loved the simplicity and charm of the necklace.  The fact that their personalised charm bracelets are hand engraved adds to the uniqueness and I have already had lots of compliments. 

If you would like to win a personalised bracelet or necklace (you choose) please do the following:

1) Follow my blog and tell me what "Merci Maman" means in English
2) Go on over to the Merci Maman website and tell me what your favourite item is.
3) Please make sure you follow @superamazingmum and @mercimamangifts on twitter

Please leave me a comment below to tell me what you have done and how best to contact you if you win!

For one extra entry you can tweet: #Win personalised jewellery with @superamazingmum and @mercimamangifts RT and follow to enter
Please, one entry per person
If you win, you must respond within 24 hours otherwise we will have to choose another winner
UK Only
Ends Monday 10th of January

Bon Chance!!

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

What EVERY couple should do in the lead up to Christmas

It's 530am and my beloved woke me up about an hour ago with his snoring.  This happens frequently as I am such a light sleeper and recently have been suffering from insomnia.  I couldn't get back to sleep, so have decided to blog about a lovely tradition we have when he is not quite so annoying!!

Him at Work (formerly known as Him Indoors) and I have been together 10 years.  We have 3 adorable children aged 7,4 and 2 who are amazing but like most kids that age, very demanding.  This year I set up my own business after being made redundant and although the business is going phenomenally well if you are interested it is the hardest I have worked in my life trying to balance the home/work life and learning to try and switch off.   I was in the fortunate position last week of paying myself for the first time, an amount that I used to earn every month and fritter away on frivolities,fancies and long haul holidays.  Nowadays, it is a huge amount of money and I was super excited and proud of myself to be in that position.  It was time to shop!

Every year, HAW and I go into London for a day of shopping that always ends in cocktails at Harvey Nicks and dinner somewhere lovely.  This year, I wasn't sure we would even make it into London due to the snow but nevertheless, we were going to give it our best shot. 

Sadly, we didn't get as far as London, but after a long walk in the snow, two buses, an argument outside the train station as to where we were going to go, we finally decided on Wimbledon.  I was so disappointed as being a mere 5 miles away from us, I often venture into Wimbledon and being a traditionalist, it didn't feel quite right. 

Naturally, by this point, after a ridiculously long journey, all we could think about was food, and so headed for our usual french restaurant for a bowl of warming onion soup and some moules.  The gods must have been against us, for the restaurant was shut due to a gas explosion and so we found ourselves in a little Thai tucked away between a gastropub and aveda.   We had an amazing lunch, the food was wonderful and the wine was even better. 

We then ventured onto the high street, a bit giddy and giggly after our boozy lunch and after about 20 minutes (I) decided that it was far to crowded and that we were better of drinking cocktails.

We then spent a lovely afternoon sampling the cocktail menu of an ok-ish cocktail bar.  Harvey Nicks it wasn't but we had the best afternoon ever, full of laughs and giggles and it made me realise that we don't spend enough quality time together and that it really doesn't matter where we are, we just need to make the time for each other more often.

So lovely people of the world, remember, Cocktail bars and husbands are for life, not just for Christmas!

If you have enjoyed this, please take the time to vote for me here Brilliance in Blogging 2010 - Fresh Voice Finalist

Peace and Goodwill to All - Happy Christmas xxx

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Dear So and So............

Dear Snow,

I usually love you, waking up to that almost hazy purplish light, that can only mean one thing - it's snowed!

For most of my childhood, we used to get a scattering, light yet magical flakes, that if we were really lucky meant we could get out our old wooden red sledge and enjoy the frolics for hours on end.

The last few years you didn't disappoint, we struggled up to Scotland and had a magical Christmas with the extended family, we had a wonderful time in February and I almost LOVE the anarchy that reduces our great nation from a matriarch to a pathetic whimpering child.  Days off school and work an added bonus.

This year though it's different, you have cost me money sNOw joke and now you look set to spoil my Christmas as trying to be organised, I ordered the majority of my kids presents online.  Around 15% have turned up - courier companies can't give me answers.  I can't afford to buy back up presents "just in case".

I have been with him indoors for 10 years.  Every year at Christmas we always go into London  for present shopping and cocktails at Harvey Nicks.  This has become ever more special since we have had the kids, as it is a day in the busy build up to Christmas when we can have some much needed quality time together.  I seriously think we won't make it into London tomorrow due to no trains.

So Dear Snow, please do us all a favour and melt away (at least until Christmas Morning, I always wanted a white Christmas).

Yours in good faith

Superamazing Mum xx

PS If you would like to find out more about "Dear So and So" have a peek at this wonderful blog 3 Bedroom Bungalow

Thursday, 16 December 2010

"I'm NEVER speaking to you again"

so said Beansy aged 7 this morning.  "You are the WORST mum in the World and I don't want to be in your family". 

Good morning to you as well my darling boy.  You may well wonder what on earth is going on, in the season of goodwill and all that.  Well let's rewind and I'll explain.

Beansy Boy is 7, a gorgeously scruffy boy who lights up my World, but by heck is he messy.  Every morning we go through the same scenario, which goes something like this:

Me "Kids, shoes and coats on, time to go"
Kids: "OK Mum"

This usually takes about 3 shouts from me and then just as we are ready to go, Beansy will wail "Mum, where are my shoes/book bag/hat/coat/scarf/gloves/homework".  Delete as appropriate.  Every single day is the same, despite me saying every day when we get back from school to put his things IN THE SAME PLACE.  His 4 year old brother can manage, his 2 year old sister pretty much manages, but Beansy......well, he just can't seem to get organised. 

Back to this morning, Beansy can't find his left shoe, we are close to being late and I have had enough.  I make him put his trainers on, write a letter to his teacher explaining the situation and off we go.  He is crying, no wailing all the way about "how he is going to get into trouble", "how I am the WORST mum - EVER".

I explained to the teacher on the gate that he needs to learn and I hope that the shame of wearing his trainers will make him more organised.  He was sniffling away as I gave him a hug and told him I loved him and to have a good day.

So, did I do the right thing???

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Shortlisted for the fresh voice of 2010, Brilliance in Blogging!

Well, what can I say?  

For the last week or so, I have really been struggling with my blog.  I felt that compared to established bloggers, my blog just wasn't getting heard/good enough/looked pants/amusing(delete as appropriate).  However, two things have happened this week that make me think, that maybe, just maybe, I may be mildly amusing/informative/being heard.

I feel I must tell you all about my reasons to blog, I was a finalist in a national competition to win a car and was asked to blog/tweet in the final stages.  I was absolutely against this as reckoned that blogging/tweeting was  for people who didn't have a life or a personality and who hid behind an online persona.  My 7 year old had given me the alias "superamazingmum" and so thinking I would only blog/tweet for the duration of the competition, I was happy to use this name.  Well 3 months later, the competition is over (we won the car, Yipee) and I am still here.  I am hooked!!

Last week I went to the BMB Christmas Lunch, I was made to feel so welcome and had a thoroughly lovely time meeting people whom I had tweeted with and read about on their blogs.   I was gobsmacked that Christmas through the years = Part 1 was chosen to be read out at the lunch, but mortified that I had forgotten to bring it with me.   

Then, this afternoon I found out that my blog was shortlisted  Fresh Voice of 2010 - Brilliance in Blogging and my jaw literally hit the floor.  I am in a very strong category with other people who have the most visually amazing blogs with beautiful content.  I rather feel like the scruffy cousin in comparison.

My blog isn't about anything specific, I don't have a speciality, I ramble about anything and everything.  It's not eloquent or hysterically funny or even informative.  However, it seems that the scruffy cousin may just have a voice after all!!!

Thank you so much to everyone who voted for me and if you haven't and think I am worthy, please do so here Vote for Me!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Wii...for one it's for ME,ME,ME....

I don't know about you, but having a house for of boys (and yes I am including the husband in that) I find myself constantly sorting out arguments between Beansy aged 7 and Beau Bo aged 4 who are constantly squabbling about who did what and who won what on the Wii.

We have only had it for a year, whereby under duress, the husband convinced me it would be a "good idea".  You would think that after 10 years of marriage I would know that his "good ideas" are usually crap and his way of trying to get his own way.  Anyway, I digress.

La\st year we got a Wii - It has become the bane of my life and I now resort to saying that a Wii is only for "Wii-kends".  I can still get away with that, mean Mummy that I am. 

Anyway, I suffer the weekend squabbling, the constant "can we play on Wii" and physical meltdowns when I turn it off (and that's just the Husband) as I know that it's only an hour here and there.

If you had told me I would get excited about the Wii, (let along blogged about it) I would have laughed, manically at you and asked you if you were feeling ok.

However, I recently read  This is THRILLER....... on the wonderful frugal family blog and my heart quite literally stopped.  You see, I LOVE MJ, not in a maniacal fan sort of way, but as a child of the 80s I grew up listening to Michael Jackson and still absolutely love his early stuff.    I am also one of those embarrassing drunks who thinks she can moonwalk.  Oh yes, I bust a gut quite literally trying out the moves, but still keep on trying. 

On further investigation, I see that Robbie Williams sings Wii......

All of a sudden and quite unsurprisingly to all who know me, the Wii gets interesting.....

To Be Continued.......

Friday, 3 December 2010

Why Snow is NOT good for small Businesses

I have always LOVED the snow, it has a magical quality that makes everyone smile when the first flutters fall.  "It's snowing, it's snowing" resounds throughout the Country and we all plan sledging expeditions and snowman building followed by lashings of hot chocolate with whipped cream and marshmallows.

So far, so lovely.

An added bonus of heavy snow in years gone by was the added excitement of a "snow day" either at school or in the office.  This was always an unexpected treat and in later life as I worked for large TV channels, I would always try my best to get in, one day even riding in the cab of the train driver.  I was the only one who made it into work that day.   This ethos of good work/school ethics was passed on to me by my mother who yesterday spent 4 hours going 3 miles to work (she is 64) and I hope that I am instilling the same ethos into my children.

However, this year is different.  This year I have my own business  This is the busiest week of my working year, with events to attend and client's orders that need processing in time for Christmas.  I am at the mercy of others - Framers, Labs and courier services.  Not to mention the fact that I need to do client viewings but don't have transport in order to do this.   My deadline for Christmas orders is the 10th December so I need this snow to get a move on, if it doesn't then it will cost my business approx £10k.   That's a LOT of money and a LOT of disappointed clients.  This weather could make or break my business which is at the critical stage of making a profit and paying a salary.

It really is sNOw joke.