Wednesday 9 January 2019

Camping with the Craig's

In an effort to save money, Gavin convinced me that camping was the way forward. I've never camped before, nor do I have any desire to, but it is a passion for Gavin, and he'd love the boys to experience it. I've agreed to give it a go (twice(because the first WILL be a guaranteed disaster)), and then if I still don't like it it'll be boys trips from then onwards.

In great attempts to make my experience as great as it can be, Gavin has spent many an hour trawling the internet for the perfect equipment, at bargain prices.


We have gone for the enormous Vango Marna 600 XL 6 Person Tent. It has a zipped porch area at the front, perfect to safely storing the boys buggy, without taking inside the floored tent. And hopefully for summer evenings, sat in a chair sipping on dark fruits cider. 

The mid section, is the living space. And then to the rear in the bedroom. It can be separated into two rooms, for when the boys get older and want their privacy. Unfortunately the room dividers won't block out the snoring, or farting from the boys in my life!

This is it! We have also purchased the added Vango foot print (groundsheet) and Vango carpet, to make it homely.


Gavin knows that for me to stand any chance of enjoying the camping life, I need to get sleep. We got 2 x Double Air Bed and 1 x Single Air Bed. They are the EuroHike ones from Blacks, with a built in air pump. We tested them in our living room, and they seem alright!


We have brought two adult chairs, and two child chairs. We're still looking for a storage unit or some sort, along with a inflatable sofa, if anyone has any recommendations?


We have picked up a collapsable washing bowl/chopping board, water containers and crockery (all in the sale). Gavin's parents have an old cooker from when he used to go as a kid, which we have tested and it still works. Gavin treated himself to a Weber go anywhere BBQ, which will be perfect for rustling up a tasty dinner every night (we can even use it as a small fire afterwards.)

The Plan

Gavin and his family often went camping to Devon when they were younger. One of his friends has highly recommended a campsite in Dorset that he wants to try as well. 

Please drop us a message if anyone has any recommendations for good family orientated camp sites/equipment/tips!

Wish me luck....GULP!

Wednesday 2 January 2019

OMG we're actually moving!

This all started way back on the 23rd July. My dad sent me a link to a property up for sale on our estate, that he'd seen when walking our family dog. This wasn't unusual of my dad, but this time when I ignored the message he queried whether I liked it. My response was "Oh of course it's the dream. Liveable, but great potential", and it seemed way out of our price range. 

As mentioned before, we had gone through a year long battle to get planning permission for a loft conversion. We live in an area where you have to ask permission to do anything to your property😖 The stress of it all was taking it's toll on us all. The house is feeling smaller, and it felt like one thing after another. 

Fast forward to mid September, when I took the boys out for a stroll we noticed that the house my dad mentioned was still on the market. Out of pure curiosity we booked a viewing on (Wed 26th Sept), and even took my mum and dad along for the nosey. I was expecting it to be dreadful, but instead I liked it. Don't get me wrong, wallpaper needs removing, there's elderly grab rails everywhere, the kitchen is very dated, and there isn't a bath, but it instantly felt homely. No nasty smells, and I could tell that the previous owners had cared for it. 

We all came away shocked, and a little smitten. We were crazy right?  The property was almost in touching distance, but we would be short money wise.

That afternoon we called a local estate agent to value our property, and he came the following day (Fri 28th Sept). We needed him to be honest of what we could achieve money wise, but also not shatter our dreams. Thankfully he came in bang on the bare minimum we needed. He said he'd have an offer on the table within two weeks, which we were desperate to believe.

All hopes started to fade away, when he couldn't get a photographer until the Wednesday, and he took until (Fri 5th Oct) to get them back. The vendor of the property we wanted, would only accept offers from people who had accepted offers on their property already.

During the week Gav and I had been talking, and we had both dreamt about being in the new house. I felt like I was becoming more and more attached, and yet the dream was slowly fading away. We'd even check the sign outside the house most days.

Finally on Friday 12th October we had two people booked in for a viewing. As it was so early on, I didn't really hold my breath. Well guess what. The first person left and made an offer within an hour. We had the second person booked in that afternoon, who equally loved it. We accepted an offer, and instantly put an offer in for the house and it was accepted too.

After a longgggg (not very patient) wait we finally exchanged on Thursday 20th December, and agreed a moving date for Monday 14th January.  

Even though our journey with this house is nearing the end, we have had some of the most amazing times in this house. Gav and I have lived here for eight years. We celebrated huge events like our engagement, our wedding night, finding out we were pregnant, we bought the boys home from SCUBU.... There's so much love in these walls, I hope the next family get the same happiness here, as we did. 

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