Best Laid Plans and all that…

Poppets Birthday party was a success! As always there were a few hiccups along the way, but overall the whole party was amazing! In my excitement, rush, manic running around and playing a few games of musical zombies, I did not get any pictures! In fact no – one did! We all had so much fun, playing the carnival games, party games, eating and generally having a fabulous time, we completely forgot to capture the moment. Luckily, my memory is still pretty sharp and this party will be remembered for all the right reasons for a long time to come.

We didn’t really get photos but I did get Happy Birthday being sung, and Poppet blowing out her candles and the look on her face, and seeing how happy she is was worth all the effort.

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I have planned a fair few parties in my life, and I believe I have many more parties left to plan, but I have learnt a few lessons over the years. I have learnt a few more from this party, I am going to share some top tips with you, so hopefully you won’t have the same pitfalls.

  1. Always allow more time than even you thought possible.

As you have seen from all my previous posts, I planned this party weeks in advance. And on the day of the party, I still needed more time. We had the hall for two hours before the party even  started to decorate and sort food etc., and it wasn’t long enough. So if you think you need 3 hours, always plan for more.

2. If it can be done before the party, do it!

Don’t be fooled into thinking a little activity won’t take long, I’ll do it on the morning! Stop! If it can be done before the morning of the party, do it! I wanted spooky faces drawing on the fruit (easy peelers and bananas), this would have looked epic! However, I thought it won’t take long, I’ll do it when were putting the packed lunches together. First mistake, it took so long to draw pumpkin faces on 24 satsumas, we had to abandon the bananas, and now we have 12 bananas to eat. Don’t worry it won’t be a problem in this house, with Mr Butterfly Child and little monkey around, they both love their food.

3. Relax! Enjoy it!

I love arranging parties, and I love the little details which make my parties special. I hope that my children enjoy them too, but every year I tell myself I will relax and enjoy it more next time. Join in more activities, just play with the kids more and every year, I spend the first half of the party checking everything I have made/planned is going to plan. I don’t really relax until the last half and then the party is nearly over. This year, so many things went wrong, or didn’t quite go to plan. Do you know how many kids noticed though? None! Not one! They loved the party regardless! So relax and have fun!

4. Let people help!

I always try to do everything myself! I may ask my mum or sister for some last minute help, but generally I try to do this crazy working mother/ wonder mummy bit, and do everything myself. You know what, it never works out and I always end up burned out, tired and usually get ill the next day! I have an amazing family and wonderful best friends and I know if I asked for any help from them, they would be there in an instant but we all have lives, and most of my family and friends live really far away. Since moving to Somerset, and the kids starting school I have made some excellent mummy friends! And they all helped and I really appreciate it! I did ask for help from some, and others just helped out because they saw I could do with the help! Now that is friendship!

5. My final tip…

Enjoy every year you get with your children, every birthday, halloween, easter and christmas but don’t forget the little things. I know my children would appreciate and enjoy any kind of party I throw, and I know I don’t need to make the effort I do. But I enjoy it, not just for them but for me. I love to be creative and I love chatting to the kids and seeing what they want, and what we can do. The build up to the party is half the fun!  Enjoying the big moments but don’t forget to appreciate the little ones too! Jumping in puddles, cuddling up on the sofa watching films, reading their favourite book for the fifth time that day, explaining what a rainbow or anything else that we do every day. I know its said all the time but its true. They will only be little for such a short time, enjoy it!

If you think this will be the end of my crazy crafty, planning monologue., don’t be fooled! We here at Butterfly Child HQ are Christmas Ambassadors! So it won’t be long before we start on all things Christmassy! In the meantime, I am still trying to catch up on my Good reads challenge, so keep an eye for my next few book reviews.

 

It is time….

Welcome to the mad house!

I am going to be crazy busy today, it has arrived, my little poppets birthday party. The cake is ready, the balloons are nearly blown. I will be spending most of my day running around like a headless chicken.  I have some photos to upload of my last few minute makes, and my cake, oh my glorious cake! It’s not amazing but I think it turned out ok. You will all see it soon, so be kind!

I want to showcase the day, with all of my little activities in use. So keep an eye out for an update later to see how the party went. Or if you follow me on twitter or instagram, I will probably be updating as much as possible.

After all the hard work, chaos and blood spilled, joking! Although we had a near miss with the pumpkin carving yesterday, everything is almost ready, and we are all very excited!

I would love to hear some feedback from you all, once I have uploaded all the party information. It has been a family effort, and everyone has worked so hard, and I really hope the day goes well. I would love to hear your party makes, see cakes you’ve all made, even mishaps at your parties as I imagine were probably going to have a few of those too! 🙂

**** Update****

I did not get any photos to share from the party! Terrible mummy, whoops! But I did get some photos of my cake!

Here is my halloween unicorn cake:

 

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Time Flies…

Today was the day, my little poppets birthday (not party yet, its not quite over yet! Party is on Saturday). Five years old today, and the saying is true. Time really does fly. Its a bizarre feeling; feeling like her birth was only yesterday and also not quite remembering how she got so grown up. I don’t know if its just me that feels like this, or if every parent in the world feels it. But each year, even though I remember her birth like it was yesterday, it also feels like a lifetime ago.

My baby, isn’t a baby anymore. I tell her all  the time, she will always be my baby. In reality, I have an incredible, talented, beautiful girl. She knows exactly what she wants, and pretty much always knows how to get it, she has taken to school like a duck to water.  She reads books and tries to write words. She dances and sings to songs on the radio, songs I don’t even know. I got trapped in the disney world for the last few years, and I am not sure I am ready to “let it go”, but here she is strutting her stuff to Symphony or some other new song. She was kindly given the latest Now CD by her Aunty, apparently my CD’s and Heart radio just isn’t cutting it anymore. She has always been into music and dancing, but I thought I had a few more years of making her listen to my songs, in hopes we would like the same music forever. But as much as I would love that, I am so glad I have a little girl, who wants to try new things, and isn’t afraid to say “but I like this one, mummy!” Also, its opening my world back up again, I have been out of the loop for some years now, and between her and my little monkey, I am beginning to see the world in a whole new light again (come on – who thought I was going to say whole new world! its ok, I thought it.)

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I am not sad* my little girl is growing up, I knew the day would come and I embrace it. I want to discover new things, and see the world through eyes of wonder and amazement. I am not saying I want her to become a teenager overnight, although I hear that may happen, but I do look forward to discovering everything about my children. Their personalities, their tempers, their hobbies, hates and mostly finding things we love individually and together as a family.

(*Well ok a little sad! Its hard not to be when your youngest is going off to school, and you are returning to work and everything feels like its changing. But just as I start to get the sinking feeling that my little guys don’t need me as much anymore. They crawl up next to me on the settee, and cuddle me tight and ask me to come tuck them in, and say good night. And you know what, when they ask me for one more kiss, or cuddle or book, I might, might just do it.)

Almost Finished!

Party is on Saturday 28th, birthday is tomorrow! Trying to get a party finished and make sure you don’t accidentally forget to do something on the actual birthday is a huge thing for a parent. Even though its the holidays, we thought we will still do weekend just in case, but that means its 5 days after her actual birthday. I have been going crazy trying to finish off birthday games, party bags and decorations. I woke up yesterday morning, I thought what about all her presents and everything. Its her birthday on Monday, I’ve had to wrap all the presents quick and a mad dash to the shop yesterday for balloons, a banner and a cake for tea after I finish work. But after all that, its nearly here! My little poppet is nearly 5 years old, and the party planning is coming together nicely!

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I’ve made lunch bags for individual food, which if you’ve got good memories, and as long as it looks good enough, do match her invites.

I’ve done a bit of upscaling, and I have remodelled some balloon trees we used for my sisters wedding two months ago. I just added new ribbon and I am making some balloon models to sit on top; a bat, a spider, a ghost and two pumpkins. IMG_7324.jpg

My final make for the day is slowly being revealed over on twitter, so have a look before I do the big reveal. I decided to make this little guy because even though my little poppet wanted halloween, she specifically wanted not scary. I have been on the lookout for cute halloween ever since, and this one thing I could not find that didn’t look a bit scary, so I’m making my own. Heres a clue, and yes I have my obligatory mug of tea with it. IMG_7323.jpg

After this weekend, I am at work all week. So I am entrusting the small cakes, biscuits and other food to my mum and sister, keep your fingers crossed for me. The main cake I am attempting myself in the evenings, it was originally going to be a ghost. But she saw a halloween unicorn in a tesco magazine, so I will attempting this over the course of the next few days. Keep an eye on my twitter/instagram for some sneaky peaks or possibly annoyed/stressed tweets as I try to do a crazy cake!

Give me a shout if any of you have any hints or tips! Or any good wine I drink whilst making it, I don’t think tea is going to cut it!

Why didn’t the skeleton go to the ball?

… Because he had nobody to go with!

I thought I would start with a really cheesy joke, so your expectations are not set too high!

As you may be aware I have been planning my daughters party and scouring the internet for games, decorations, food and everything to make it a wonderful party.

I gave a bit of a countdown of some of the collection of things I found. I have also given making some of my own a go! I am impressed with my creations, and my mum says they’re good, so you know, mums can’t lie!

In all seriousness, I love making things, trying new craft ideas, and I love nothing more than a good theme and getting my kids involved in making things.

I think I have built the anticipation enough, here are my versions of tin can alley (monster selection, pumpkin and ghosts), witches hat hoop-la, and monster bean bag toss.

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This is probably the poorest showing of witch hat hoop-la you may ever see, so thats an achievement. I could not find my glue or my glue gun, so tape it was. It will do, and after 25 children have tried throwing glowsticks around them, they may look better. I can live in hope.

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I really like how my pumpkin pots turned out. The pots were see through, and I didn’t want to cover them. Whilst trying to think what I could do with these, my son put tissue paper in one and I thought, that will work. Out came the orange tissue paper, and my trusted Sharpie and away I went.

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Originally, these cups were supposed to be ghosts, but I am not sure what they are now. I quite liked just drawing lots of different faces, I don’t think any of them particularly look scary or ghostlike. But they are cute and thats all that counts in this house.

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This set, this set I am especially proud of. I need to redo the blue monster, as you cannot see the face. But other than that, I love how good they all came out. My son really likes e the frankensteins monster one, but I have to admit I really like the mummy! What can I say mummies should stick together.

I haven’t got a photo of my bean bag toss monster yet, but I will update as soon as I’ve got one. Well, be brutal! What do you all think? Did I pinterest pass or fail? Have you guys ever made some carnival games or halloween themed crafts that you want to share?

 

*Book Reviews* Credible Justice

Credible Justice: Fighting Back (Credible Justice #1)

by Gerry Stewart

Credible Justice is the first book in a series of crime justice books, based around a vigilante type set of unsanctioned police/agents from UK and USA working together to bring justice to the streets. A self published crime story from Gerry Stewart, I won this book in a goodreads challenge. It is my first experience of self published work, so I had no expectations going in, I didn’t read any reviews just the blurb.

The blurb ends with “Not a group of super heroes, but a team of dedicated men and women, prepared to break the rule of law to achieve a sense of justice. Controversial? Absolutely! Does it work? You decide.” I actually think the idea for this book is really good, I like crime dramas, and I read to escape reality a lot of the time, so even though i believe in our justice system in the real world, reading about police getting justice over the rule of law is still something interesting and intriguing. It is a controversial subject but the challenges the police face, and knowing that bad people get away without punishment is obviously an upset for anyone, so why not have a look into a world where vigilante police are seeking their own justice.

It took me a while to read this story, as you all know, I have two children and I work full time, so I don’t always have time to read. However, if I really love a book, I cannot bare to put it down. But I did enjoy this story, I had a few issues with it, which I think could have been picked up, int he editing and publishing stage, but otherwise it is a good story, I have read better but I’ve also read worse.

For me the biggest pitfall was the disjointed storytelling. It skipped from one scene to another without a paragraph break, a new chapter or any sign that the area, conversation or people had changed. I kept up fine, so it didn’t affect my overall enjoyment of the book, but it would have made an easier read and perhaps I would have finished it quicker. My other objection, is that for me I want to connect to the characters. I didn’t get a feel for these characters, there isn’t much back story other than what was needed to carry some of the initial mystery of “who is the vigilante?” I want to connect to the characters, feel for them, fall in love with them, cheer along or hate them.
I liked the the main couple of Snyder and Ryan, I would like to hear more of their story, see more personality from them.

This book is described as a story of action, intrigue, romance, humour and moral dilemma. From the bat I could see all the action, intrigue, moral dilemmas etc, but romance. I could see a hint of flirting but I would say it didn’t lead me to believe there would be much romance, however the declaration of love in the middle of the book, may just be the best and probably most realistic declaration I have ever read. In most books, the hero/guy/protagonist has some big romantic gesture or there is some catalyst which causes a romantic moment. In real life, usually gestures/declarations of love are usually a bit more low key or unplanned. The book is worth a read just to see this realistic declaration from one of our main characters.

The book is fairly short, and so the action is kept at the forefront of the story, which is good if you like your action packed books, I think in future books, this could be scaled back a bit, as sometimes the story line felt rushed, and it felt like maybe I had skipped a few pages or missed something. The mystery of the vigilante, which is built up in the first couple of chapters, literally takes pages to come to a conclusion. I actually liked the building up of the mystery, but it was resolved too soon. A little bit of intrigue can really keep a book going.

Overall, I liked the idea behind the story, and I think it could be an excellent book with a little bit of editing and forethought in terms of storytelling, format and continuity. Character development is so important to me as a reader, but this can be remedied as there will hopefully be future books in this series. I’d like to get a feel for a character, and if you have some really strong male and female leads, I want to fall in love, envy, dream about, hate or be intrigued by a character. My hopes are that in future books, I will get more of a glimpse into the characters backstory and personalities.

I am really happy I won this book in the Goodreads challenge, its nice to read a book I might not have picked off the shelves. It also came personalised and signed by the author, which is lovely and I am just sorry it took me so long to read. I really enjoyed it, once I got stuck into it. The writing style could use some work but I could feel Gerry Stewart was connected to his story, they always say write what you know, and I think he has done that, it needs a bit of polishing but its a good story.

 

 

*Book Review* Die Trying

Die Trying (Jack Reacher #2)
by Lee Child

I enjoyed the first Jack Reacher, it was a tad slow and I didn’t immediately warm to Jack and so I found I wasn’t itching to continue straight away with the second one so I put off starting Die Trying for a while.

Once I picked it up, I found I could not put it down. This is generally the case for me, its not often I start book and not finish it in one night. Since having children though, its not that easy. Die Trying was really engaging from start to finish, and I’m slowly falling in love with Jack Reacher, partly because I want to look after him, and feed him soup! I think I have a bit of a thing for under dogs, (waifs and stray if you ask my mother!) vulnerable characters or characters with a bit of an attitude and issues. Jack Reacher definitely falls into this category, we didn’t learn much about him in the first one, and he is still the same stoic character in the second but we do start to seem more of a glimpse of him as a person.

The story is a whole new level of mystery and thriller, again the secondary characters are just as intriguing as the main character.Again we find Jack Reacher living by himself but he is working as a doorman to gain some money before we assume he moves on again. Being a gentleman, he offers assistance to a young woman on crutches and again gets pulled into a thrilling cross country mystery. Holly Johnson is the woman of the hour, an FBI agent that has been kidnapped. But unlike your usual lady victims in novels, you would not want to mess with Holly. There are moments where you can see she is scared and quite rightly so, but she holds herself with such bravado and courage, she quickly become a character you wanted to back and win.

It is exciting, and dangerous and you definitely get sucked into Jack’s journey along with Holly, this is a story that really makes me feel part of the adventure as if your living along with the characters.

My only issue was the ending, for me the first book had a fair bit of action but moved quite slowly, and still didn’t feel like we got very far with character progression. In this instalment, I felt like after all the excitement and adrenalin of the whole book, the ending was anti climatic for me. Plus I get the feeling we are never going to find out what happens to the minor characters, and for the entire book you are so engaged with everybody not just Jack that it leaves me feeling a little sad we don’t get to hear what happens to most of the characters after the story. I know I will hear from Jack when I start the next book, but it would be nice to get more of an ending for more of the characters.

Overall, I enjoyed the second in the Jack Reacher novels and it has left me wanting to read more, as a working mother of two, as much as I cannot wait o start the next book , it isn’t always that easy. But I will be making notes ready for next review when I get chance to read it.

Top 10 Halloween DIY Carnival Games

In the lead up to Poppets birthday, I have spent a lot of time researching halloween games and fun for her party, (read: in bed looking through pinterest!) and in doing so, I came across a lot of ideas and themes. I have picked a handful to make myself, which I will share with you later, for now heres my round up of my top ten choices for halloween diy games.

Kicking off at number 10 is:

10. Spooky Tic Tac Tae game with halloween painted rocks.

I love this ideas, as not only is it a great game idea for a small party, but the children get to join in painting the rocks before the party even begins. This game would be ideal for 4+ year olds and a small party with a handful of guests.

Its tic-tac-toe but with painted rocks to look a little spooky, but I think not only are they adorable, they aren’t scary either, which is perfect if you have sensitive little children.

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I think any younger and there will be temptation to eat the rocks, or lick them, you know generally drool all over your hard work, and even though I always supervise when little ones around, its always best to keep small objects out of the way if you have a mix of ages.
For my second point, I think a smaller party group would be best, as children no matter how old can get a little impatient at having to wait a turn.

Still I love how the creation can be a family event. Finding rocks and painting them, fun before the party/games even start. I am not so sure, my children painted faces would look as cool as this, but it would be something I would love to try in the future. As we have nearly 25 children at our party – this game will have to wait.

(Lovely idea from Maggie at Smashed Peas and Carrots)

9. Poke – a – Pumpkin

This may not be a smashing piñata, crazy game but when you have a room full of excitable 5 year olds, smashing a stick against a floating piece of hard cardboard, doesn’t seem too appealing, but if like me, you like the idea of a twist on lucky dip and want something different to a party bag, this might just be for you.

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I especially like how when stuck to a piece of backing board, it looks like a pumpkin. Each cup has a prize in and when a child breaks through the tissue paper, the prize will be revealed.

Ideal for parties, as you can make it as big or small as you want. The prizes can range from sweets right up to a small toy if you new so inclined. I imagine it is fairly easy to make – i havent attempted my version yet, as I still havent quite made my mind up on design but if  you want to see how to make your own head over to Project Denneler for a step by step guide.

8. If you’re a little more creative and talented this next one, might be for you.

Wooden Monster Bowling Set by Ideas Evite.

I imagine this skittle/bowling set will look beautiful in real life, if looking at the picture online is anything to go by. I would have loved to make these for my poppets birthday but my husband is currently away and a girl only has so much free time for making games for a party. These may have to wait for another year, but I will a set.

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Best Halloween Skittles I have seen, so original and unique. If anyone wants to take pity and knock me a set up, I would be so happy, I might make you a cake!

7. If you find you only have a day to go until your party and you need a quick game that anyone can make up, and you will have everything you need at home, this next one is for you.

Toilet Roll Bowling

Its exactly what it says on the tin. Draw a ghostly face on 6 toilet rolls, stack them up and throw something at them. Easy as that! I have found lots of examples of this over on Pinterest – and each is unique depending on what faces you draw. For added halloween bonus, get a small pumpkin to roll into your creation.

https://pin.it/0Uys_lK

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6. Pumpkin Lollipop Holder

This next one is not necessarily meant as a game – on all the pins, it was just being used as a holder. A cool decoration with a purpose.

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I am taking this idea, and running with it as a carnival game. Normally, lots of lolly are stuck in a board (which might be painted to look like a treasure map or a place) and the end of one lolly will be coloured in. This lolly is the winner and gets a better prize, and each child gets a lolly to keep!

I still just like this because its a halloween decoration and has purpose, it might also be perfect for decorating at halloween and your trick or treaters can take a lolly from your pumpkin. If you would like to make one yourself, head over to the craft/home/all round goddess that is Martha Stewarts website.

5. Pumpkin Toss

I’ve got to be honest I love the games at the fair, where you have to knock over the clown heads, or through the basketball through the hoop etc. So I have two halloween themed bean bag toss games. My first is cool because it shaped like pumpkins stood atop each other. Its a cardboard cutout, so easy to replicate at home and you can make it however you want, so it can as imaginative and original as you want to make it.

Screen Shot 2017-10-19 at 17.55.36.png I like this design is basically a pop with holes cut out – it makes the clean up so easy, as all the balls are still in the box. You can them behind, being contained by the box. Anything that can save me having to cross a room 70 – 80 times to collect balls  is alright with me.

You can all sorts of versions of this game, not just halloween, but for this specific one visit bhg – halloween parties.

4. Bean Bag Monster Toss from The Photographers Wife.

I love this version of the bean bag toss game because the monster is so cute, and you can add a bit of originality to it, just by changing the monster up a bit. Its really simple and easy to make, and the children could even make it themselves, before playing the game.

I love when a game can stem from a craft/ art activity. Its at least two days worth of activities all rolled into one.

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3. As we near the end, the ideas are incredible and can be achieved at home, with a lot of items we all just have around the house. These are my favourite types of activities. Easy, cheap and can be managed even by people that aren’t necessarily used to being crafty.

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If you head over to the DIY network, you can create your own spider web game with Hula Hoops and duct tape. The website here has really cute spiders to throw at the webs, but cotton wool balls or regular pom noms would have the same effect.

Basically, hang the webs made out of hoops and duct tape, and throw the items until they stick! Simple yet genius.

2. My second choice is something I have attempted with various degrees of success, probably doesn’t look as good as the author from Somethings Creative, but does anyones replica of something they have seen on pinterest ever look like the original.

I like this game purely because I am a big Harry Potter fan, and I think cute witches around halloween can be quite funny. I like the decorations and cakes with witches legs sticking upside down.

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This is the halloween take on hoopla, and it uses witch hats as the cones. In my version, I am making hoops out of glow sticks. I am hoping it will add a level of cool to my game, hopefully it will hide my not so perfect witch hat cones. 🙂

And my number 1 is one of my favourite fair/carnival games ever. I am not sure how easy or hard they make the game, I have never won. But that could also be because my aim is terrible, truly terrible, and I throw like a toddler. I have sense many different versions on Pinterest but this is probably my favourite.

  1. Halloween Tin Can Alley

I love Red Ted Art, I love looking at the different arts and crafts, myself and the children have tried a few in our time. But as soon as I saw this, I knew we had to have our own version for Poppets birthday! How could we not?! Cute, Halloween monster tin cans, its my perfect, and ideal halloween game!

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I hope my version will turn out just as well as the ones above. These may be the most amazing things, I have ever seen in my life, ever! If you head over to Red Ted Art, she has taken some wonderful photos of her little boy painting these tins, and a whole bunch of other arts and crafts.

I would like to thank all the sites I have mentioned above, I love seeing other craft ideas, and these have been some of the most inspirational blogs I have ever read. I have got so many ideas for Poppets birthday, I’m just not sure I have a lot of time to do them all.

I hope you enjoyed my top 10, please feel free to leave me a comment and keep an eye out for some of my own versions of these games.

*Book Review* Killing Floor

Killing Floor (Jack Reacher, #1)
by Lee Child

I wasn’t sure about this book when I first started it. I had heard great things about it, but I like to make my own mind up. Although it had some action from the start, it was still quite slow but once I got into it, I really enjoyed it. A really good read, I passed onto my mum to read too! We quite like reading the same books sometimes so we can discuss it after reading. Its quite a nice mum/daughter activity.

I know the Jack Reacher series is quite old, and now has to movies but I guess I was quite late to the party. I have managed to avoid hearing much about the series, other than lots of positive comments about the books. So I was quite excited to get started.

The debut Jack Reacher novel kicks off with a good mystery and an intriguing character. I did find it was quite slow, and even though Jack is meant to be a bit of a mystery, I finished the book still not really feeling connected to the character, and for me, when reading its about feeling connected to the characters and the books which makes me carry on reading a series.
Although, I didn’t fully connected with Jack Reacher, I did like the story and some of the background characters.

I like fiction, and I am a fan of Harry Potter and sci-fi and lots of things that dispel belief, but I like it in that context when you are expecting magic and some things to not make sense. The idea of why Jack was in Margate, Georgia and his connection the dead body felt a little strange. It added a level of something to the story but I am not sure why. This was my only issue with it, and I have only read the first book, so maybe more will be explained as the series goes on. I am giving it the benefit of the doubt, as overall I did really enjoy the book.

It’s an ‘ok’ start to a series, and Jack Reachers mysterious life kept me intrigued enough to want to carry on with the series and pass it onto my mum. I am excited to move onto book 2.

⭐️⭐️⭐️★★ (3/5 stars)

Prep for Halloween Birthday Bash

Poppets birthday is fast approaching which means party planning is well under way – you cannot move in our house for halloween decorations, scary pictures, banners and a whole host of halloween themed funfair stall games.

Poppet decided this year she wanted a halloween costume party but not too scary, and she wanted some games for all her friends to play, the sort of games you might play at a fair or carnival. BUT she wanted everything to be in line with her theme. Not asking for much then! 🙂
It is a good job, I love a good theme and I love to make things for my children to enjoy.

First, we had to think about which children to invite. Poppet has not been in school long, she has a few friends outside of school and from the other class, it wasn’t going to be as easy as just inviting the whole class, plus the hall we wanted could not cater for a whole class plus extras.
I made Poppet make a list of everyone she plays with, and who she could remember the names of. This was a start, we included friends from other classes, friends from out of school activities and included some family friends.
Once we had a list – we needed an invite. I googled to get some ideas, and I saw a wonderful invite to a halloween party on Grealish Greetings blog (I spent hours scouring Pinterest). I wanted something unique but cute for Halloween, not scary and not monsters.

There was a huge amount of ideas to search, but I was so happy when I came across this beautiful and cute design for an invite. It inspired my little poppet so much, this became her request for a cake too. (She has since changed her mind about the cake but it was cute whilst it lasted, more on that later.)

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(Original invite can be found at Don’t be scurrrred! )
Poppet is a very particular, and wanted to be included as much as possible. I showed her the invites, and I gave it a go at making my own. I had over thirty to make and we had a mix of boys, girls and a few from the same family. I set to work, I love making things and I don’t claim to be amazing but I was still happy with my result. Poppet was happy with the invites and was very excited to give them out to all her friends.

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What do you think to my finished results? I hand cut all the ghosts myself, on the blog it does provide a template but I quite liked making them all different shapes and sizes. I just couldn’t imagine all ghosts would be identical. I also added a button to some ribbon to make the bows, as I have an abundance of buttons, and I didn’t have any bows on hand. I went with it, and it is close to the original with my own little spin on it. I think they turned out ok. Grealish Greetings have so many other ideas for invites, and it is worth checking out if you have a party coming up.

When planning a children’s birthday party, it always helps to be organised. I have spreadsheets and alsorts to make sure everything is done and everyone accounted for. Ive got lists for food, checking with parents for allergies, lists for games and prizes. I could go on and on.

I won’t bore you with all of those details, I just like to have everything written somewhere. I also quite like a list to tick off, nothing better than completing a list of tasks and getting to tick or crossing them off.

Decorations are bought, banners are ready (ooh that reminds me, I need blu-tac), and we have ideas for food. Next, on the agenda is games for the children to play. I have started these already, so keep an eye out for another post shortly with some finished products.