{read} 10 books for these darker evenings


Now that the darker evenings are creeping up on us, it seems like the perfect time to put together a list of books that I’ve read and would recommend and also a list of what’s on my wish list.  Blankets, coffee and a book – it doesn’t take a lot to please me.  Well, that and the mute button when the ps4 is on.

1 :: A Robot in the Garden :  “Warm-hearted fable of a stay-at-home husband who learns an important lesson in life when an unusual creature enters his life”.  In the day and age where robots are the norm, from doing your laundry to driving you about.  Oh, and there’s the hotel where you can get all up, close and personal with them, if you know what I mean…this book, as the title suggests, tells the story of a man who finds one in his garden.  In his quest to return the robot to his owner and get him fixed, I got swept along with the charming and funny little robot and didn’t expect to enjoy this book as much as I did.  Anyone know where I can get myself a cute little robot?…

2 :: How I Lost You : “They told her she killed her son.  She served her time.  But what if they lied?”   Having just left prison and trying to build a new life for herself with a new identity, a photo arrives in the post of a toddler.  It’s addressed to her old self, Susan Webster, and written on the back of the photo is the name Dylan.   Also the name of her son, who she apparently killed.  Bloody brilliant!  Shout out to Lynn, who recommended this book to me.  This book had me gripped from the start.   A brilliant psychological crime novel which had me questioning characters throughout.

3 :: Elephant Moon : “Based on a true story, Elephant Moon is an unforgettable epic tale of courage and compassion in the midst of brutality and destruction”.  I’m not sure where to start with this book…so click on the link, read about it, buy it and remind yourself to take a breath every now and again.

4 :: Hippy Dinners : A memoir of a rural childhood.  Read my review and an interview with the author here.

5 :: Big Magic : Creative living beyond fear. :  “By sharing stories from her own life, as well as those from her friends and the people that have inspired her, Elizabeth Gilbert challenges us to embrace our curiosity, tackle what we most love and face down what we most fear.”  Having just downloaded this book and only read some of it, I can only tell you that so far, so good.  This is definitely one that I fully intend on taking my time with and more importantly, enjoying and hopefully, finding my mojo with.

…and five books that are on my Wish List;

1 : Go Set a Watchman  This book needs no introduction.  Which is why, like Mostly Yummy Mummy, I’ve let the dust settle before I start on this.  Buying it would also help too.  :)

2 :: Go Ask Alice : This tragic and extraordinary true-life story shows the devastating effect that drug-abuse can have. But the big difference between Alice and a lot of other kids on drugs is that Alice kept a diary . . .

 3 :: When Mr Dog Bites : Dylan Mint has Tourette’s. Being sixteen is hard enough, but Dylan’s life is a constant battle to keep the bad stuff in – the swearing, the tics, the howling dog that seems to escape whenever he gets stressed… But a routine visit to the hospital changes everything. Overhearing a hushed conversation between the doctor and his mother, Dylan discovers that he’s going to die next March. So he grants himself three parting wishes or ‘Cool Things To Do Before I Cack It’. But as Dylan sets out to make his wishes come true, he discovers that nothing – and no-one – is quite as he had previously supposed.

4 :: The Girl on the Train : I must be the only person who hasn’t read this yet?!…

5 :: How to be a Parisian : Just…because.

Now, hit me with books you’ve read or are on your wish list.  I’m a fast reader and could do with some more on my list.

{captured} the perfect way to say goodbye to September

It’s not everyday, I get to wave goodbye to the office and head out to the forest for the afternoon.  But when I do, you can bet it’s a gorgeous sunny day {no flies on this girl ;) } and I’ve got my camera with me.


The track along this lake was by far, the bumpiest track ever…{it reminded me a bit of the wild mine ride at Gulliver’s world}.  So, it was quite nice when my colleague stopped the van {who am I kidding, my whole body was grateful for this short stop} and we just sat there for a few minutes chatting and taking in this beautiful view with just the sound of a harvesting machine working in the distance.

I may have stood a little too close to some logs…but they smell soo good!  And I may have fallen slightly in love with a sheepdog called Macho.  At one point, my colleague and I, were crouched down amongst all the bracken so that we wouldn’t startle the sheep that were passing {true story}, and it was at this point that my colleague happened to mention that the last time he was here, he found a massive snake.  It didn’t take me long to get to the top of where we were heading after that, let me tell you!

My colleague’s last words to me as I was getting out of the car: “Let me know if you get any itching in any peculiar places tonight…because that’ll be the tics”…and off he drove, laughing to himself!




Wales.  It’s something else, right?!  *insert all the heart eye emojis*

I’m happy to report, no itching in peculiar places, phew!

Life is…

THAT scoreline.  25 – 28.  What dreams are made of.  And high fives off the postman for the posters around the office, acknowledging our win.  Pretty hydrangeas on lunchtime walks…and double checking how to spell hydrangeas.  Green Day on loud in the office.  Hair Goals…and then deciding to chop a bit off.  I said it wouldn’t last, didn’t I?!  Football and Handstands til dark.  And having soup and toast to warm up when we get in.  Hello Autumn!  Telling Alf to get ready for school, only to find him half naked and wearing a blue wig…a la Thing 1 and Thing 2.  Lunch with girlfriends.  #macmillancoffeemorning and over £1,000 being raised in the local pub, go Llandrillo!  Karate bruises!  Still trying to figure out that drama I went to watch, a week later.  The Indian Summer making a good start to Autumn.  Therefore, making forest visits with work even more inviting.  Robb doing his thing at the School Open Evening…resulting in a little date night for Alf and I.  Celebrating 10 years as Mr & Mrs with a trip to York.  When we were leaving a restaurant one evening, I asked the waitress where was the best place to head to for a drink, she replied with “Mmm, For your age, I’m not sure…” Aww!  I’m not going to lie to you, I’m still getting trying to get over that one…

All the photos and trying to decide what to do with them.

{captured} The Good Life Experience 2015

Apples 2

This past weekend saw the return of The Good Life Experience at the Hawarden Estate Farm Shop for it’s second year.  I was lucky enough to win tickets for the whole weekend, but as it turned out, we only managed to get there on the Sunday.  Sometimes, you’ve got to take a step back, look at what’s going on, where you want to be…and simply say “No” to some things…or everything!

But seeing as we were sat outside around the fire, eating fresh fish we had just cooked on the bbq {not forgetting Monster Marshmallows!}, listening to music…we were almost, almost, there.  After all, isn’t that what the Good Life is all about?

Anyway, here are some of the things that caught our eyes while we were there;

Alf painting


The Print Your Own T Shirt {and half of your face if you’re Alfie Lowe} at The Peckham Print Studio went down well with the bois…so much so, Alf’s T Shirt has gone with him to school this week “to show  the teacher’s and everyone”.  I’m pretty sure Alf’s T Shirt will fit me too, so keep an eye out for that one ;)

tent of wonder


We didn’t catch much of the live music…just small reminders of what we’d missed out on, really, like the photo above.  Speaking of which, both times I’ve visited this festival, I haven’t made much effort to get to any of the demo’s or talks etc that are going on all day, which is something I plan on making up for next year.



climbing wll

Robb looking very pleased with himself up the Climbing Wall here.  Alf did well too and managed to get to his highest point yet.  Go Alf!


Say no more ;)

On the back of their postcards, Best Made Company, had a recipe for making Swedish Coffee.  I’m intrigued and am going to give it a go.  No fancy gadgets needed…just coffee, water and an egg…anyone else ever tried it?  I’ll let you know how I get on with it.


Ooo-er missus!  I think it took 7 attempts to get these two smiling AND looking at the camera at the same time…


Ladies & Gents, I give to you, Ben Fogle’s legs!  I was too shy to ask for a photo with him.  But got his legs in here accidentally.  I just saw the bag, the hay and saw it as a photo opportunity…and it’s not until I looked at the photos at home that I realised it was his bag on the floor that I was photographing.  How do I know they’re Ben’s legs then?  I remembered them from when he was going up the Helter Skelter…


bottle openers


We did manage to watch the Blacksmith work his magic on making a spoon.  We were all in awe of his craftsmanship and stood there from start to finish to see the finished product.  This kept the bois very quiet and very still throughout…always a rare thing around here.


The guy at the Falconry Display was quite a character.


Paul was impressed with how much biking stuff was about the festival.



I promise you Alf is enjoying this ride…?!


There was a craft tent with allsorts going on in there and we opted to try making something out of plasticine…mainly because I just wanted to sniff the stuff.  Oh my God,  I just love the smell of plasticine!  I swear when I smell that stuff I’m 8 years old again and trying my best not mix up all the colours.


…I’ll be adding a yellow ukele to my Chri….. is it too late to mention the C word yet?!



And no day out is complete without some sort of wrestling match going on.  Or any day for that matter.

The Good Life Experience, we’ll be seeing you next year.

Back in the game


…not that Alf ever stopped playing football because, err, this is Alfie Lowe we are talking about.

There’s something to be said about watching the younger kids play football.  They are brilliantly funny, their little faces full of concentration {and that tongue poking out at times too, Alf}, the way their legs go, their reactions are way cuter, the tackles are even funnier, giving it their all and still we’re shouting at them from the sidelines to “Take It, Alf!”, “Cer a fo wan!”…”Ag eto, Alf.  AG ETO!”…yes, I am that Mam.

But I bloody love it.  Its’ the laying out of the kit the night before, the mad rush looking for the shin pads that morning, the talks of goals and tackles while we snuggle up in bed and the sing song/chant we have on the way to the game, the song that has now become our tradition and our “good luck charm”, if you will, that we just MUST do.  Just because.

And today’s sing song/chant must have worked {even though I promised Robb I wouldn’t sing in the car because his mate was coming with us…but, sorry Robb, you know how this works…or how this Mam takes these football matches seriously}.  Because Alf only went and bloody scored!  And it was a great goal too, bless him.

We just want them to do well, don’t we?  And to get a goal is always a bonus.  Plus when they score we know they’ll go to bed happy that night.

And me.  Oh so happy.  Da iawn Wilf.

{a to z} C is for Cynefin


A Welsh word for a place where a being feels it ought to live.

It is where nature around you feels right and welcoming.


…also known as looking back through your Summer photos and kicking yourself for not visiting that place more than what you did.  Fingers crossed for this “Indian Summer” I’ve been reading about…

{captured} #brothergoals


You can tell in this photo that Alf wasn’t too sure about this…but with a bit of encouragement, he got on.  And held on to Robb like his life depended on it.

Other #brothergoals judging by what goes on in this house with these two:

:: Pee sword fights…{don’t ask}

:: Asking to watch a film…and then playing on ipads throughout the whole thing

:: Breakfast with Bear Grylls {he’s on the telly, not in my kitchen…}

:: Telling me how much they love me / how nice I look / just generally being over nice and following it with, “Can we go on the PS4?”

:: The same again with “Who wants pancakes?!”…to be fair though, this doesn’t take much with me

:: Fist fights in the back of the car resulting in me getting nudged in the back at least once…

:: I’m sure they’ve thought of a game called “how many times can we make Mam roll her eyes today?”

:: Same goes for “How many times can we Say Arse until Mam tells us to stop saying Arse”

:: …and the same for “cachu”

:: …and while we’re at it, the same for “fu…” JOKING Gwen! ;)

Bois Bach, de chi werth y byd a mwy…ar holl ‘arses’ hefyd ;)

Living Arrows   Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall