With two small kids I’m always trying to think of crafts I can do very, very quickly. I thought it might be fun to do a tutorial on how to make a tag blanket as I knew it would be something my daughter would enjoy and therefore also meaning I felt rightious in doing some sewing rather than the housework! I did the majority of this while she had a nap and (as she woke up earlier than planned, boooo), finished the last bit after she’d woken up. I think the whole thing took less than an hour which makes this not only a ‘how to make a tag blanket’ but also a ‘how to get stuff done very quickly while your kids nap’!
Hilltop Farm Benfleet is a bit of a hidden gem. Not many people know about it but it’s a great place for fruit or strawberry picking in Essex. Occasionally we go out as a family and I think ‘I’m not going to blog about this, I’m not going to blog about this, I’m just going to have a nice time…’ and then ‘Argh! This is too nice! I have to blog about it!!’ So this is my review of it – if you want to know about the farms opening times or other places for fruit picking in Essex then I’ve popped these at the end of the post.
This weekend we went to Hilltop Farm in Benfleet, which is about a twenty minute drive from central Southend. I’ve wanted to do fruit picking for ages, I grew up in Kent and picking strawberries was just one of those things that you did every summer holiday. As I grew older I had friends who worked on the farms picking blackberries and the likes and to me it always reminds me of my childhood. Fruit should be something we can pick, not just something we pick up in Tescos. But round here? Well, despite the loveliness of the seaside I live in one of the most densely populated areas in the country. There’s foraging to be done, but it’s at the side of busy roads, so the discovery of Hilltop Farm was a rather sweet one….
So, on Tuesday night I was invited by the lovely people at Mumsnet to attend a function up in London to find out a bit more about the charity Railway Children and to consume my own weight in cocktail sausages at no.10 Downing Street at a do hosted by Samantha Cameron.
I posted back in December about Railway Children who are a charity who try and support young people who have run away from home or, preferably, prevent them doing so in the first place. I’ve never run away from home and with my son only being two, it’s thankfully not been an issue that has impacted my own life too much. However, as The Husband runs the local foodbank/ homeless drop in centre / sometimes night shelter / anything else it needs to be, I have quite a bit of understanding about what can happen when people become homeless, and it’s really, really not nice and really not the kind of thing that I would wish on anyone. Certainly not a child. And people do prey on the homeless, particularly on homeless and vulnerable children in a way that makes my stomach turn. Not nice stuff, but true all the same.
So, after the typical Kate style panics: will the Cameron’s have the heating on high enough or will I need to take a thick cardie? (It was fine) Will it be one of those houses where you have to take off your shoes when you go in? (No, although it would have been ace if it was) Will I get lost finding it? (Obviously) I was on my way. …