Saturday 3 December 2022

School Christmas Fayre


Today we took a trip to our Primary schools annual school fayre. The PTA alway put on a great range of things to see and do, this year was no exception.
We of course had to visit the Santa's grotto ☺️ this year the gifts were craft based which was a nice idea. The older 3 happily did their crafts when we got home meaning I got to have a much needed cup of tea and a sit down.

Once we had finished visiting Father Christmas we treated the children to a hot dog each. At £2 each they were a reasonably priced lunch and it felt good to treat them. 

We also tried our luck on the tombola stalls and I had to have a good browse of the book stall too ☺️

 There were several free things that children could do during the visit. Such as a mobile petting zoo that was in the playground. We saw miniature donkeys, brushed some goats, chatted to chickens and fed some bunnies. 

There was also a trail around the school of elves to find. If you found them all you could get a free prize from the Raffle stall.

It was a nice nod to the cost of living crisis that no child would go home empty handed and could enjoy a few games and visiting the animals with no funds needed.

It really was a wonderful afternoon trip out. OH coped well but he needed to stand behind the buggy a few times in crowded parts to avoid being bumped or jostled by overexcited children running around. I think he'll sleep well tonight though 😂


Friday 25 November 2022

That Friday feeling

 It's Friday! Another week survived 😊

This morning I popped the children to school and then had a reading cafe session with DD3. It was lovely to have some 1:1 time together. She really does have such a cute and sunny personality, it's a joy to be around her.

After leaving the reading cafe I popped to the community pantry. £5 really doesn't go as far as it used to even at the Pantry. The shelves were a little empty looking but I managed to complete a shop anyway. I'm thinking of trying to make some cod fishcakes or a fish pie with the cod steaks.

Once home there was a short break while we waited for DIY Dave to turn up. He is a local quy who fixes washing machines and dishwashers etc. His prices are very reasonable and if he can't fix something he won't charge you for looking at it. He also always gives out a wealth of hints and tips on looking after your machines and getting the best out of them. 
 He was able to repair our washing machine which had a minor issue, but sadly or dishwasher has gone to electrical heaven with a computer fault that just isn't worth the cost of fixing.  We will start looking for a good deal on a new one shortly. DH says to leave it to him as it'll give him something to do while he recovers. He quite likes researching it all, comparing reviews and machine specs etc so he's quite in his element.
We found some old long forgotten Meccano while decluttering some cupboards this afternoon. DH has listed it for sale on Facebook as a job lot. If we're lucky it'll make some money towards a new dishwasher 😊
 In the early evening DH popped to Aldi, he was kindly given a lift by his mum who was also headed there too. We needed some essentials for the weekend so it saved me and the children trying to carry it all home by hand tomorrow. DH not being able to drive yet is definitely frustrating him a bit.

Tonight's plan is knitting in front of the England match.  Could it be coming home finally?



Thursday 24 November 2022

It's Thursday


Good evening 😊
 Thank you all the kind messages and good wishes for DH. He says he feels a little better each day but is getting quite frustrated with his lack of movement. He is okay doing things with his shoulder as long as it isn't to much weight bearing so he can feed himself and drink etc but if he needs to change heights, for example buttoning a shirt or pulling a zip it's still very painful. 

Today was a cleaning sort of a day. I deep cleaned the patio doors and gave them a good shine up this morning and then tackled a few marks on the carpet from all those soggy feet running in and out. As you can see Baby C was quite happy to join in and help me ☺️

In the afternoon I popped to the shop. We need milk and three nice donations for the school tombola. The children are allowed to wear non uniform for a day in exchange for a donation. Each year group has a different theme so there is plenty of variety. I also picked up a packet of "whoops" biscuits. These are the biscuits that are a bit odd looking or broken which don't pass quality control. Some companies now sell them in big bags or boxes for quite a reasonable price. I paid 99p for 1kg bag. If you haven't tried them I recommend giving a packet a go. It's quite fun as you never know quite what you are going to get but they are always tasty.

The Afternoon school run was uneventful but rushed as we tried to beat the weather home. It was just starting to drizzle as we reached the door so we did a good job. 

Dinner was chicken wings, veggies and baked beans. The three smallest all turned their noses up at their meals and ate a bowl of cereal instead. Tom soon polished off the extra chicken though, all that healing is giving him an appetite.

Tonight's plan are a little reading in bed and perhaps some knitting with a movie. I'm trying to knit Baby C a hat but I've lost my mojo with it somewhat and I'm getting cross with myself for not just getting it over and done with. I always seem to wander off whenever it's on my lap and so it just sits there looking crossly at me 😂



Wednesday 23 November 2022

Family news


 It's all been a bit epic here in the Frugal household! Poor DH has just returned home from a 2 week (almost...12 days!) Hospital stay. We've had to cope with brushes with sepsis, the possibility of superbugs, allergic reactions, and more antibiotics and IV's and cannulas than I can count.  

 We are all incredibly grateful to the all the wonderful NHS staff who directly and indirectly helped get DH back to a reasonably healthy state. We still have a little bit of a recovery journey ahead of us, but we can now face it together at home 😊

 The story all started on the Wednesday of half term when we were invited to go swimming at a nearby water park. While going down one of the flumes with DS, poor DH picked up a small friction burn on his left elbow. We didn't really think much of it.

Fast forward a week and DH returns home from work as usual saying he thinks he's pulled a muscle or something in his elbow. By the evening his elbow had a bright red patch of skin around the almost healed friction burn. I suggested getting it looked at but DH insisted slathering on some Sudacrem and trying the local walk in centre in the morning rather than spend hours in A&E with late night drunks.  Gradually overnight DH developed a fever and the red patch began to rapidly grow. My dad took him to the local walk in service and they very quickly assessed him and sent him to hospital for IV antibiotics. I assumed that it would just be over night and he'd soon be home. How little I knew.

 Over the next few days the infection in his elbow exploded. Drs we're drawing circles around its progress every few hours and there were several antibiotics being tried in the hopes of finding one that worked. He had to have his wedding ring removed as the Infection began to move to his hand, and I was warned he could be facing damage to his organs as the infection also crept up his shoulder towards his heart and lungs. Luckily at pretty much the final hour something started to work and the infection slowly was brought under control. Add in a sudden serious allergic reaction and yet more changes of antibiotics just to keep things hanging in the balance!

 Thankfully he is now well enough to be home but still a little delicate. He is currently signed off work for 4 weeks but that will most likely be extended as he is very tired and has quite limited movement in his arm still. 

 I'm not quite sure what curve balls life will throw at us next. We certainly weren't expecting this one. 

 It's never a dull moment around here. That's for sure !

X x X

Friday 14 October 2022


 It's been a bit of a busy day.  It started bright and early with our neighbour knocking on the door asking to borrow some milk as they'd run out. I passed them the end of the 6pint bottle we had as there was a second 6pint bottle already in the fridge to replace it. There wasn't a lot left but enough for a bowl or two of cereal and a few cups of tea 🙂

 Then I took the children to school. Poor DD3 was coughing the whole route and was very cuddly while we waited for the school gates to open. I told her teacher I would be home all day and if DD3 needed collecting to just call me and I'll pop back.

 Once home I set up the slow cooker to make a nice beef stew. I finished just in time for the school to ask me to collect DD3.

 I returned to the school to find DD3 was fast asleep in the medical room, I woke her up gently and managed to half walk and half carry her home.

Ten minutes after being home and settling DD3 into a sofa nest and given her some Calpol my phone rang again! This time is was the other school calling to tell me that DD1 had been accidentally hit in the face during a PE lesson. DD1 was okay but had gotten herself into a bit of a state bordering on a panic attack. Eventually she had calmed down and gone back to her classes. 

 This was followed by a third call from the Primary school again to ask about DD2's new medication 🤦

 Finally all the phone calls and interruption stopped and I was able to make a dessert for the evening while DD3 and DD4 had a little nap on the sofa.

  My parents kindly walked DD2 and DS home from school for me so that was a welcome break. My neighbours knocked on the door again and gave us a new 2 pint bottle of milk to replace the milk they borrowed in the morning  which was very kind of them.

 Once everyone was home safe and sound the evening was quite quiet thank goodness 🤣

 X X x

Wednesday 12 October 2022

Complicated life


 *** Please enjoy this random photo of some art I bought yesterday. It has nothing to do with my post but I like to add a picture with each blog 🙂**

  Life is feeling hard right now. I know and recognise that it's tough for everyone out there but my blog is about me and my not so little family so I can only really go on my own life experiences when I talk about things.

 Everything just feels so overly complicated at the moment. It all seems to take so many more steps and stages to do anything than it used to. I'm finding myself craving the simplicity of the first lockdown. I miss having so much time with my children and my husband each day. 
  I feel like each day rushes past me and then I feel bad each evening that I didn't do enough that day and promise myself that I will do more tomorrow. It's not a nice way to live at all. 
   I need to find ways to slow the world down a little bit and smell the roses more.

 X X x

Wednesday 7 September 2022

Its a rainy day.



Todays soup is Leek and Potato. 

Todays dinner is hunters chicken and rice.

 Todays dessert and snacks are PB&J biscuits.

 Todays activities are testing the depth of puddles...

 ...and a spot of ghost hunting and exorcism.
A happy busy day in Spurrier house 😃


Monday 5 September 2022

And breathe...


The three eldest went back to school today, number 4 starts on Friday to allow for teacher visits first.

Everyone returned home happy but tired. This week is going to be a long long long one.

Once everyone had been dropped off, Baby C, Miss W and I met up with a friend. We all visited the community pantry which is my usual routine on a Monday. There was lots of tasty things on offer but there was quite a crowd of people all competing for it. I was very lucky to snaffle the last of the burgers. 
Meat can be hard to come by at the Pantry so whilst they have plenty I will try and stock up on tinned meats for leaner times. This week I've added a tin of tuna and a tin of ham to the stocks. 
I'm also experimenting with making soup in the slow cooker as a starter for dinner time. Im hoping it will fill up some tummies and add some extra nutrition to our diets without costing the earth. We aren't on a position to increase the main meal size and with fuel rises and the cost of living crisis it doesn't look like it's on the cards any time soon.
 I'll keep you posted on how it works out for us.
Tonight's soup was parsnip & squash. It came out really nicely with a handful of lentils added for good measure. Dinner was beef curry and rice, using the burgers from the pantry.
Everyone ate well and no one asked for desert so I call that a win ☺️

DH picked up some milk on his way home and also picked up 2 trays of chicken legs and 4 packets of bacon reduced to pennies. They are all now in the freezer. What a clever man I married ☺️

Take care


Saturday 23 July 2022

A quiet start


We've spent the first few days of the holidays quietly at home. DD1 is spending the weekend with the in-laws on a mini holiday so I've just got 4 to entertain for now.

Yesterday a friend of mine asked if we would like some fridge bits as she was going on holiday and didn't want to waste anything. She gave us a bag of all sorts of things including a packet of bacon medallions. This morning we made cheese and bacon turnovers together. We tried to make puff pastry but it doesn't seem to have worked. In fact the pastry seems even flatter and more dense than my usual attempts 😂 

We also moved this beautiful but very solid and heavy writing desk from its resting place in the kitchen to the front entrance way. It looks so much nicer than the plastic drawers we had there before. 
We found the desk on the school run. It was on someone's driveway with a free sign attached the top. DH picked it up on his way home in the car that evening and i crossed my fingers and toes that someone else didn't take it first.

One of my aims over the holidays is to encourage the children away from screens for entertainment. So I've pulled out our old Beetle game and taught the children how to play, as well as a few decks of cards to play pairs and patience.

Tomorrow we are off to a local festival which I'm looking quite forward to do. They have a display each year by a local trope of lion dancers and they are so amazing to watch.


Thursday 21 July 2022

Summer break is here!

  I sent my last two children in school off this morning for their final day. DD1 and DD4 both finished yesterday so I had 3/5 home with me.

Though it was very overcast all day the air was still quite humid and the house will take a few days to cool down to a more comfortable level, so we decided to make a little activity in the garden for entertainment.

DD1 made tickets from little pieces of card whilst I made a quick Car wash sign for the 2 smallest two to decorate. It gave me just enough time to gather a few things together.

First you fight the ticket off the customer 🤣 then give the vehicle a good dust over. 

Then we spray everything, including the driver, with warm soapy water.

Then we give everything a good scrub with some sponges and rags. 

Then we wave the customer goodbye, switch drivers and do it all over again and again until everyone was soggy and had had enough.

Then we get everyone dried off, fed and back off to school to collect the missing two.

We celebrated the end of term with a lollipop and lots of excitement about the next few weeks together 🙂

Happy summer holidays everyone


Wednesday 20 July 2022

Drowning not waving


I'm struggling at the moment. 

My Dr has put me back on some medication for anxiety and depression but it's not quite kicked in yet so I know I'll feel a little better soon.

There's just so much to juggle at the moment. Finances are a huge worry now and for the future, organising 5 children, keeping the house up together, preparing for the summer holidays, worrying about poorly family members, trying to be a good friend, just trying to be everything everyone needs me to be.

It's tough and I don't feel like I'm doing any of it particularly well right now. I'm definitely treading water and slowly sinking. It all just feels like an uphill struggle.

I feel like I need a complete reset, to start from scratch again and build things back up slowly until I'm on my feet again and can keep up to speed. I'm not sure how I'd go about that, I'm not very good at slow and steady. I tend to try to do it all then collapse in a heap exhausted. 

 There's not much point to this post really I'm just ranting. 



Thursday 16 June 2022

Thursday's Th-somethings

Yesterday was spent enduring Sport's day. A full day in the blazing sun on AstroTurf with minimal shelter. By the time we arrived back home I felt awful, DH very kindly let me have a lay down to recover while he cooked the children's tea. 
Today I still feel headachey and lethargic but it's not to bad. I've managed to get all the jobs I wanted sorted out today completed, albeit a bit slower than planned.
On this afternoons school run though I had a lovely surprise. One of the school run ladies I often chat with passed me a heavy carrier bag and said her friend had given her a load of bits and she didn't need these but wanted them to go to a good home. 
Can you guess? 

A big tin of buttons! All shapes, sizes and colours 😍 What a lovely gift! 
There's several really pretty metal buttons, some very classic looking vintage buttons and even a few cute shaped buttons for children's cardigans. I'm going to make great use of them all.

In other crafting news here is a quick progress pic of Baby C's blanket. I'm still getting strong ice cream vibes from it but DD1 said it makes her think of tropical sunsets 🤔

 I guess we'll just have to see how it evolves.

Take care and stay hydrated

X x X


Tuesday 14 June 2022

Tuesday's twitterings


We've had quite an exciting day. I dropped off DD2 and DS at school as usual before heading to our usual Tuesday morning group.

This week we made cards for Father's Day. 

After our group we decided to spend ten minutes in the park enjoying the lovely weather. We were just finishing on the swings when an air ambulance started to circle overhead and landed on the grass almost beside us. 

The tiny two were fascinated by it for a good while. I was initially worried that some very ill person was about to be rushed across the park on a stretcher, not something I wanted two young children exposed to, but it was what they call a "Dr Uber" that delivers specially trained medical staff to the scene rather than transporting anyone away from it.

The helicopter was there for a fair with just the pilot who had to tell a lot of people to please stop touching the helicopter.  I can understand many people stopping and watching but the idea of rushing over to take close up pictures and get in the way of people doing important jobs seems a very poor one.  Someone was even asking to take a photograph sat in it! 

After the helicopter excitement there wasn't any time to rub home for lunch before the afternoon school run. We ended up heading into one of our favourite cafes and sharing some banana pancakes. After polishing them off Baby C took a nap and DD3 and I read a book together back in the park under one of the trees. No more helicopters appeared which I think DD3 found disappointing 🤣

Once home I found a quick few minutes to finally give Miss Rabbit her face. It's not perfect but I'm pretty pleased with it over all. Hopefully Baby C will agree on her birthday.

X x X

Sunday 12 June 2022

Sunday shenanigans


 DD3 enjoyed today's birthday party. The entire venue was princess themed from the hostess down to the party favours. DD3 has come home full of princess magic and happiness.

Miss E's birthday gift was very well received and we got a lovely message thanking us for it, which I thought was very sweet.

This weekend I have finished making a crochet bunny for DD4's birthday stash. She needs a face embroidered and a little dress made but neither will happen until the house is quieter during the week and I do it uninterrupted. We can't have a bunny with wonky eyes and that's exactly what will happen if I rush it or get distracted 🤣

My current pick-up-put-down project is a simple stripey blanket for DD4. Now she's going to be 2 a lot of her baby blankets are to small for good winter snuggly sleeping so this one will be a little bigger. I'm doing a simple 5 row pattern of whites/creams and pinks. So far it's looking a little ice creamy so I might make some applique ice cream cones to sew on once it's done. I'm sure I can find some patterns on Pinterest somewhere  for free, or make something up on the fly. 

 How was your weekend?

X x X 

*** Eco Friendly Jenny would you please be so kind as to email me again or find me on facebook. I have tried to reply to your email but it is getting returned to me with a failed address. Sorry to be a bother x x

Wednesday 8 June 2022

Back to routine


We've officially been back to school for 3 whole days and I'm already tired 🤣
This week we have 4 freshly moved PE days (why they have to change EVERY term I don't know!), a school trip, an after school club, a swimming lesson and a September new starters meeting to juggle.
And once we get through all that there's a birthday party on Sunday to squeeze in before church. 

Thanks to the Cost of Living Crisis there is almost nothing in the birthday gift buying budget but we don't let silly old things like money, or a lack of it, get in our way. Quickly to the craft stash!

DD3'S friend Miss E will hopefully enjoy her baking apron at much as Mum and I enjoyed making it.
The main fabric is a simple but durable cotton ticking, a few lengths of ribbon from who knows where and a little floral cotton fabric for the E and the pocket lining. We used a tea towel as a size guide which seems to have done just the job.

Once added to with a fancy paper chef's hat and a fun cupcake kit I think we have a reasonable gift for a little lady on Sunday. 

Wish me luck

Friday 3 June 2022

Happy Jubilee week!

Goodness me, we have barely stopped this half term! There are so many wonderful events being put on each day and the majority of them are free, so we've been spoilt for choice!
It quite a lovely problem to have when your choosing what to attend and what to skip. I'm feeling very blessed.
Today we attended a big picnic in the park event which was full of music, displays and interesting stalls. 

We met a wonderful lady called Helen McArdle who is a historic costumer. She had a table full of hats (regency, victorian, georgian etc) and bits of costume you could try like corsets, waistcoats, farmers smocks etc. Mum and I spent a lot of time chatting with her as she was extremely knowledgeable about her craft and spoke with such a inspiring passion about it. 
DD2 looked adorable in a floral bonnet 😍 

Once home I spent a little time finishing off a pair of tiger paw socks for Baby C. I'm popping them away for her birthday next month. I'm very tempted to make a pair for my nephew as well as his birthday is in October. 

My next project is deconstructing this pretty but unwanted wedding dress that I was gifted for free. The lady who gave it to me was quite adamant she just wanted it gone from her house. I watched it for a little while on one of the Facebook free pages to see it there were any takers before temptation overwhelmed me and I asked for it.
My plan is to make my 4 girls satin nightwear for Christmas using the satin, lining and embroidered decorations. Once that's done I'll assess the leftovers and work out what else we can do. My mum suggested lavender bags and sleep masks which sounds like a great plan.
 I'll let you know how it goes.

X x X


Tuesday 17 May 2022


After a happy morning at play group we took a little peek in a few of our favourite charity shops. Miss W found a set of farm themed wooden dominoes that were just too cute to refuse. 
After playing a few different games at the dining table with them I noticed the plastic freezer bag they were living in was already looking a bit worse for wear.

So while Baby C napped and Miss W built towers, I whiped up a little bag to store them in. I used some animal themed fabric from my stash though it's admittedly more of a jungle theme than a farm theme. It's met with Miss W's approval so that's what counts 🤣

I really enjoyed sitting a stitching for a little while. Its reminded me that the children all need summer hats making! 
Watch this space.

X x X


Saturday 23 April 2022



DH; We haven't done much this Easter break have we?
Me; What? We've played in parks...

...eaten in restaurants...

...Visited the real Alice in Lyndhurst...

...fed ducks...

...completed an Easter trail...

...climbed (and rescued children from) trees...

...enjoyed 1:1 parent and child dates...

...baked tasty treats...

...celebrated a birthday...

...visited the zoo twice...

...visited several playgrounds...

...attempted "nice" group photos...

...and eaten several picnics together. I think we've done very well indeed. 

X x X