This afternoons activity with Daddy looked like lots of fun: they gathered sticks and the kiddies built their own pile of firewood for a camp fire. They then sat around the fire pit to test whose camp fire would flame up the best!

Isla created a very structured camp fire, logical and a pattern to where she placed her sticks. Noahs looked more sporadic but covered a wider area.

Neither camp fires took fire, it was quite windy. So the kiddies enjoyed a hot chocolate and marshmallow around their piles of sticks.

They had fun though and that’s the main thing. I’m loving all of these practical tasks they’re doing with Daddy.

I’ve been waiting, all day, for someone to tell me it’s all a dream and we are still going to Dubai. But, unfortunately, no one jumped out screaming April #fool and alas, we are still at home. I’m gutted.

Lots to look forward to though and right now it’s about focussing on our main objective: stay at home at all times, unless to buy essential food & walk the dogs! I have actually loved being at home everyday. It’s my favourite place.


This afternoons activity with Daddy...

“We are very excited to try out this new food from Forthglade, it smells woofing delicious” 🐾 Straight from the doggies mouth!

I am very excited to announce that I am a new ambassador for @forthglade. What does that mean? Well, I get to try out the products and tell you all how good they are and get special offers and discounts for my followers too!

It’s such a strange time with lockdown, however finding out about Forthglade couldn’t have come at a better time. When I went to get our usual dog foods in the supermarket it had all sold out. So, resorting to online orders seemed a very natural thing to do to ensure our furbabies are fed.

This food is a minimum of 75% meat or fish and is free from junk. With Snoopy, he has a tummy condition which means we have to be careful what he eats, it’s perfect. We will keep you posted on what they thought! 🐾 #gifted

“We are very excited to...

🌼 April is here and along with it comes another set of photo keywords for #MummyPhotoADay photo challenge.

We should have been flying to Dubai today, so my insta squares would have been very different to what they now will be. I’m expecting to see lots of Spring colours and stay at home families instead this month.

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #mummyphotoaday so I can comment and share my favourites throughout the month.

Does anyone have any creative stay at home plans for April?

🌼 April is here and...

My favourite pics from March #MummyPhotoADay - a massive thank you to everyone that took part. We have had a lot of new members this month and it’s been really hard picking my favourite 9! There are now over 4,000 photos to choose from.

All photos are tagged, but from left right:
📷 @cultivatingdelight
📷 @newmummyblog
📷 @confessionsofacrummymummy
📷 @houseofbaughs
📷 @sahrazade
📷 @_lisaslife_
📷 @socalshopgirl384
📷 @descendants_of_war

I’ve really loved seeing photos from @anywaytostayathome, @the_mummy_editorial, @freyalexandra, @becsbrewtifullife & @canonjacq.

All you have to do to join in is add #mummyphotoaday to your caption and the keyword of the day... I’m very excited to see what April has in store for us. Lots of fun “Stay at #Home” themed photos!

Thank you to everyone that joins in 📷

My favourite pics from March...

The kiddies had a lot of fun playing in the bath today. Swimming pools are closed, it’s too cold to get outside in a paddling pool so we put our swimming costumes on and pretended!

The kids had loads of fun making sparkly bath water and foaming soap shapes with @kidsstuffcrazy products. It’s amazing how fun products like this can keep the kiddies entertained for hours.

They literally played in the bath for an hour. The water had gone cold by the time they got out. It was the perfect indoor fun activity, especially as it was wet outside today.

If you’re homeschooling and self isolating with young children why not make a fun bath and invite the kids to make a mess with whatever you have in the bathroom! We also tried to make our own bubble bath using washing up liquid and #citrus juice - it wasn’t a nice smell 😂 the kiddies will try again in the week.

You can get the Magical Sparkle bubble bath and Foaming Soap from Kids Stuff Crazy at @superdrug - check out my review on the blog. #linkinbio

#mummyphotoaday 🧼

The kiddies had a lot...

Today has been a busy day, but nice and chilled at the same time. We let the kiddies have iPad and Xbox time this morning; our homeschool doesn’t give out homework! They built some cool stuff in Minecraft and worked together. Which was nice to see.

After lunch we took a longer walk than in the week, across the river. This is a walking route that is direct from our doorstep and took us 90 minutes in total, part of our one exercise a day under lockdown rules. It was nice to get some fresh air and just talk about whatever comes into our heads. We spoke about a lot of random things. 7 & 9 year olds do come out with some funny comments. Noahs favourites are “would you rathers”. We got home and Daddy made a delicious roast dinner and I did a deep #clean in the bathroom. Then had a long hot bath!

No rush for any of these things as we seemingly have about 12 weeks of working at home and possibly months of homeschooling. I just hope we can have family over soon as we miss them all.


Today has been a busy...

I am running a day behind 🤦🏼‍♀️ I keep falling asleep and not posting my photos. I’ll catch up today... This is #fresh. Getting out in the fresh air has been a complete dream over the past week. When you’re told you can’t do something, it makes you want to do it more. Like when Hubby said we have to be careful about the food we eat, I wanted to eat it all!

This photo was the kiddies playing football with Daddy whilst I walked with them with the doggies. It’s something that’s becoming a habit after we finish homeschooling.

It’s a shame as Daddy normal gets out all of the time. On a typical Sunday he’ll go out for a 3 hour bike ride in the mornings. Possibly go swimming with the kids too. Walk the dogs with us later in the afternoon. I think this “1 exercise” rule will be effecting him more than anyone else I know. It’s also makes family decisions hard, if Daddy goes out on his bike he can’t walk with us. It’s very necessary with the lockdown rules. 
Just think how much we’ll all appreciate a long bike ride and driving to the beach for the day when all of this is over.


I am running a day...

Until tomorrow...

Until tomorrow...

Some helpful tips if you’re considering fostering

I have often considering fostering, before I had children and as they’ve got older. Being able to help a little child get support in the start of their journey, to me, feels like the most courageous thing anyone can do. One of the common concerns that would-be foster carers talk about is money. It’s a taboo subject in society as a whole. However, for foster carers, it can be an even greater minefield. It is vital that prospective foster carers realise that foster caring is a paid profession. You will be financially supported to ensure that you can provide a good level of care and support to the children you foster.

Fostering payments – how they work

Fostering payments are effectively split in to two parts. Firstly, there is the fostering allowance. This is paid for each foster child and is designed to be used on the child’s day-to-day care needs and expenses. Secondly, fostering payments include a professional fee. This is the ‘income’ component of being a foster carer as a job.

The government sets minimum weekly amounts for the allowance. These vary according to two factors: where you live; and, the age of the foster child. The younger the child, the lower the allowance is. For example, a foster carer of a baby outside of London or the South East will receive a minimum of £127 per week as the weekly allowance. A foster carer of a 16-17-year-old in London will receive a minimum of £222 per week as the allowance. These rates are reviewed each April.

In addition to these minimum rates, you may receive an additional allowance in the event that the foster child has specific needs, or you have additional training for particular types of placement such as mother and baby, or asylum-seeking children.

The government also determines that some income from fostering is eligible for its own tax exemption. This is for up to £10,000 per year which must be shared between all foster carers within the same household. In addition, you also don’t have to pay tax on some of your fostering earnings over £10,000.

This allowance should cover those expenses incurred in caring for the child. This may include such things as food or mileage. However, as long as the child’s needs are met, the foster carer determines how it is used.

Fostering payments from agencies

The minimum rates for allowances, along with the tax elements, are set by the government. However, fostering payments themselves are not regulated by the government. Therefore, agencies (or local authorities) can choose to pay either the minimum rates or their fostering payment rates.

This means that agencies may choose not to differentiate how much they pay according to age, as long as they meet minimum requirements for their location. In reality, most pay much more than the minimum required.

In essence, the purpose of going ‘above and beyond’ is to enable a foster carer to provide care on a full-time basis. Viewing it as a career is beneficial to an individual foster carer, the children in their care, and the local authority.

How can you use the fostering payment?

Part of the payment provided to you is to, of course, meet the living costs of homing a foster child. It should, therefore, be used for daily expenses and household bills. A foster carer is responsible for ensuring a child in their care has clothing, food, entertainment and the like, just like any parent. However, there are no hard and fast rules as the costs will vary depending on the household and the child.

In addition, the professional fee element is like your pay. You can, of course, choose how to spend this as you wish.

You may also be entitled to various benefits depending on your circumstances.

It’s not just about money

It is also important to realise that your ‘reward’ package isn’t just about finances. When choosing an agency through which to foster, you should look at the wider benefits available. For example, what training are you provided with and how is this offered? What support do you receive as a foster carer?

Weigh up the whole package of support and ensure you are being treated fairly and in a supportive manner.


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November photo challenge day 11 #MummyPhotoaDay
Some helpful tips if you’re considering fostering

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