Super Single Mum's Blog

Life and all the shananigins!

It’s November Again

Right then, it’s almost the start of November, which could mean a few things:

It’s not long till Christmas so if you haven’t started your shopping now might be a good time to think about it!

It’s Movember, that time where men folk grow 80’s porn star style moustaches to raise awareness of prostate cancer!

It’s time I get my arse into gear with blogging again and join NaBloPoMo for the second year. If you don’t know what that is, it’s National Blog Post Month. The challenge is to do a post every day throughout November. Last year I was off work with depression and managed to get through both that and the blogging challenge by writing about what I was going through. This year I am glad to say I’m not off sick and so won’t be writing about that!! The challenge this year will be finding the time to write 30 posts, work, be a mum, be a girlfriend, get organised for Christmas and find time to relax!

Watch this space……..

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October 30, 2012 Posted by | Blogging | | Leave a comment

Has Charity Lost it’s Meaning?

Ok I’m all for charity, I work for a charitable company, I took part in this years Race for Life and I regularly sponsor people for various events, I just feel like sometimes charity doesn’t feel like charity any more! What do I mean by that, I think I mean that due to the lack of money floating around our economy, charities have to fight to get what little Joe Average can afford to give away and as such, charities have almost become more sales driven.

Lets take the example of Race for Life. I took part, raised some money, bought promotional items and did what I thought was my bit for this year. I don’t have much spare cash and so this was my way of doing something for charity. About a month ago I got a phone call from a company thanking me for taking part, followed by a 5 minute load of waffle, obviously read from script, about how much MORE is needed in terms of money. Now I am in full support of Cancer Research and if an event is going on I will join in, but I was told that Cancer Research had PAID this telemarketing company to phone round those who took part in Race for Life to gain regular donations from them. I can’t remember the sum involved but it was a fair bit! Ok, ok, what’s my point, yes charities have to put themselves out there and ask and actually through this campaign they hoped to quadruple the initial outlay so fair enough, maybe you have to spend a little to raise a lot. No the bit that annoyed me was when I wouldn’t commit. I explained that as I like to support a variety of charities, I would not commit to one regular donation. She started at £5 a month, then £3 then £1 and then even asked me how much I could afford. I stood my ground and still said no, in fact I think I pointed out that had she listened to my reasons then she would no I wouldn’t commit to any monthly amount.

I know it wasn’t that poor girls fault, she is just doing a job, what I object to is being given the hard sell on giving to charity. Charity, as they say, should begin at home. I have 2 children to provide for and as a single mum things are tight, I can’t afford to give up money every month for charity and hate feeling guilty for it because of the ways charities operate.

It also annoys me when you walk round town and get stopped by the charity clipboard people, I hate that when you smile politely and say no thanks, a lot of the time there is a tone to their “Thanks” as you walk away. I just want to do my shopping in peace and not feel guilty about a rat in Botswana not having safe drinking water! Ok so I haven’t ever been stopped by anyone raising money for that particular issue, but there are some obscure ones out there! How much of my donation would go on admin costs and wages though, how much actually goes to the charity? For me, somewhere in the middle of all of this charity really has lost it’s meaning. When was the last time you gave £1 to a homeless person, or a cuppa from the local cafe if you don’t actually want to give them money. When was the last time you helped out as a volunteer in any capacity. When was the last time you put 50p in a box, not knowing what charity it was for but because you felt like you were doing some good?

So here’s your challenge, instead of putting your hand in your pocket and giving away money you may not have, see how many “charitable” acts you can do over the next week, helping out an elderly neighbour, giving your kids old clothes to a friend who may not be able to afford new clothes for their growing kids. Lets look after each other again!!

I completely understand the need for charities, and for those who can afford to give then fair do’s, my argument here is that there seems to be too much pressure on money to help out charities, rather than doing things within our own communities to make a difference!

October 22, 2012 Posted by | Current Affairs | | Leave a comment

Crafting for Christmas

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October 21, 2012 Posted by | Christmas | | 2 Comments

Song Saturday Returns

This week sees the return of Song Saturday with this wonderful song from Snow Patrol…..

 

All I’ll say is it’s our song, Mr K asked me to listen to it once and it’s perfect, I said yes!!!!

October 20, 2012 Posted by | Song Saturday | , | Leave a comment

A Coffee Lovers Dream

I’ve always loved coffee. When I met Mr K, our second date was a day in my local town and we had a few coffee stops, we both love a good coffee, and we both like the variety you get these days in coffee houses. Whenever we are out and about we always stop for coffee somewhere. Thing is though, it gets expensive always going out for coffee so I looked into coffee machines and decided it was time I invested in a good one!

I decided after reading countless reviews and comparing prices to go with the Tassimo T55 and I have never looked back. It is so easy and it is not just a sales line when it says “Perfect coffee every time” its true! Like I said I read countless reviews so if you want to know the technical stuff have a look elsewhere as I am going to tell you what I think is important about this machine rather than how many litres of water it holds and how much the average coffee costs!!

The first thing I love is that it’s not just a coffee machine, you can get T-Discs to make a variety of teas and hot chocolates too, and when I ordered T-Discs from tassimo they also sent me some t-disc blanks which you can use to make iced drinks, I haven’t done this yet though so won’t review that right now!! The varieties available are great, from Kenco and Twinning’s to Milka, Suchards, Jakobs and the new Costa range. If you love hot drinks, there will be something for you, although some varieties are only available online.

The water tank on this model includes a Brita water filter which for me is amazing. Our tap water is awful and to drink plain water I have to buy bottled, it’s ok for juice and I thought it was ok for tea and coffee, but how wrong I was! The difference it makes to hot drinks is astonishing really! It adds to the perfection of each and every cup, and how nice it is to have a cup of tea without the “scum” from the tap water floating on top! Ok the filters are not cheap, but each one lasts a month and there is an indicator on top of the machine to tell you when it needs replacing. You get one filter with the machine to start you off and I just bought a box of 6 filters for £16, which works out at less than £3 per month. Considering my machine makes from 1-10 drinks per day I’m definitely using it enough to warrant the cost of the filters!

Now if you are like me, quick and easy is best, I hate it when you get kitchen gadgets that are a pain in the neck to clean, but this is as easy as making a coffee. No really, you get a cleaning and descaling t-disc with it, and you just put it in and press the button and it does a cleaning cycle! All you need to do is wipe out the area where the t-disc sits and wash the removable cup stand! The cup stand itself comes off to put larger mugs under, or can be set higher for making espressos so you don’t get the mess of coffee splashes!

It really is so simple to use to, you put in a t-disc, which will only go in one way so you cant get it wrong, you close the lid, place a mug or cup on the stand and press the button! There are also + and – buttons so you can make your drink stronger or weaker to taste, the only down side is this alters the size of the drink. If you press +, this makes the drink weaker by adding more water and – makes it stronger by adding less water. I tend to + most drinks as I like a taller drink and that’s the right strength for my taste, but it was only by playing around that I have learnt that! I even let B make her own Hot Chocolate because it is so easy and safe, she is no where near the hot water that comes out and she loves that she can have a hot chocolate for bed without disturbing me when I am sorting out H.

So if you are a coffee lover and haven’t got one of these then I would recommend one without a doubt! As it’s that time of year maybe you should get writing to Santa!

October 19, 2012 Posted by | Home | , , , | Leave a comment

A Change in Direction

Surprise!!! It’s me, I haven’t fallen of the blogging sphere just been thinking about the shape I want my blog to take and in the process I’ve neglected it a little!!

The thing is, the job I do is all about confidentiality and it’s made me question how confidential my blog really is, those who know me, know who I am but am I putting too much out there that can be read by strangers and potentially people who I work with and support. Do I really want those people knowing all about me?

So I thought about giving it up, I really did contemplate shutting down my blog and closing the door on this part of my life.

That made me a little sad!

Ok in the last year I have mainly written reviews and hosted guest posts, but I do miss writing for myself. Thing is I get really bored with other blogs that get taken over by reviews and guest posts and I don’t want other people to think the same about my blog, so this is what I have decided……..

My blog is now going to be less personal, more about discussing what’s going on in the world and my opinions, I don’t ever intend to offend, but hopefully it will start some good discussion! I’ll still do some reviews and guest posts are always welcome but my aim is to write at least twice a week. I’ll still talk about my life but in the context of the posts and for that purpose here is a brief update on me and my family:

H started school in September and is loving it, B is now in year 5.

Mr D and I split up back in April, and in July I met Mr K who is amazing and I am not afraid to say I am madly in love with, we met online and he lives an hour away so we only see each other at weekends or holidays, but we both know that won’t be the case forever!

I’m still doing the same job but completed my Diploma this week, something which has taken up a lot of my time and has also impacted on my blog, I’m glad it’s done though.

I hope you all enjoy discovering my new direction and I look forward to hearing your views!!

October 19, 2012 Posted by | Blogging | , | Leave a comment