All ready for Week 2 on Monday

Feeling quite nervous about Monday , Have I done enough work, Am I out of my depth. Yes this may all seem simple to most people but this is me.

I left school early and went straight into my job as a messenger at the Embassy. I managed to slip through the loop so to speak, I left the uk again (I did 1st year uk, 2nd year Junior High, and then back to the uk) after finishing third year… which nowadays in the uk system is year 9 and went back to the states.. I went into the American system as a freshman and to be honest I hated it. I was in Cleveland Ohio and it really was a culture shock to me, about Christmas time we moved to Lakewood Ohio, A much nicer place to live but I still hated high school… so I became a bit of a trouble maker and was sent back to the uk with my mother for three months… so I skipped being in school in the states but also didn’t go in the uk either… when we got back to the states My dad had moved to Washington Dc and told me that I had to go back to school, I refused and he agreed that if I got a job I wouldn’t have to .. thinking that there was no way I would be able to get a job… bad move… I got one the next day.

 

Soo Here I am… No qualifications to speak off, Yes I got a good education and was always in the “A” stream…. and with the exception of my behavior I actually got good reports academically… That’s where it ends lol While i grind my teeth when I see terrible spelling and real misuse of grammar… Your and You’re being my pet hate when used in the wrong context I am hardly the most literate person in the world.

 

And this brings us to now, And why I’m worrying if I will cope, will I be able to be able to cope with the workload, will I be able to manage the time to do all the homework needed.. We were told at the start of the course on the workshop that there would be about 2 to 6 hours of homework a week.

 

I can but try!

 

(This has been posted in the new blog as well)

 

 

That Terrifying moment in time when your phone crashes….

Smart phones love them or hate them… I’m not sure about mine…  it’s an HTC Desire  

 

HTC Desire

HTC Desire

Mine crashed the other night and would not restart… in fact it was totally stuck on loading.. Just like my tablet which has never worked since… Allan managed to get into the boot system and after a bit of googling I managed to flash the phone and then do a factory reset, I then managed to get all my contacts back through a back up of my old sd card..   so far so good… getting my apps back has been a whole other matter…. while I downloaded App2SD to move stuff over to my sd card i still found that there was no internal space so had major problems downloading apps.. but in the end I won.. I had a choice… Facebook on my phone or whatsapp.. In the end i opted for whatsapp as i can always use the basic Facebook or even go on it via the browser… contrary to popular belief i am not on Facebook all the time anyway lol  And my phone crashed again……. plus I found out  it up loads of space so in the end i took it off after all why do I need it as I get unlimited for free texts and of course I am an unsociable cow lol ………..  guess what my phone is working great now…  shame because I did like it……

What I did panic about is I had some books and texts etc all backed up on my phone and some photo’s… thankfully everything had been backed up to my sd card not long ago… I am always backing everything up now. on pc or phone… so reinstalling the backing up program.. reinstalling my messages and gallery and here we go again… I am back up and running, with no sign of whatsapp at all…

Yes I know my phone is old… Allan had it for 2 years before he got his upgrade and that was a year ago. so i guess I can’t complain really if it gets the hic cups but when its an app that does it. that really peeves me .

I’m not one who is constantly on the phone talking to people in fact I doubt I even use up 5% of my call time plan , I don’t even sent that many texts even though I am unlimited on how many I send. and because we have WiFi at home i don’t even use up a quarter of my data plan… I am Giff Gaff which is great……..  and only cost me £7.50 a month on pay and go……..    I don’t work for them or anything but seriously I only heard about them in the uk about 6 months ago and they are the cheapest pay and go provider ever. if you use mobiles you should check them out, even the sim cards are free…
If you want to check them out try here 
http://giffgaff.com/index/offer   you can get a free sim from that link where it gives you the tariffs
But if  you want to order a sim with £5 free credit on it when you activate it,  here is a link 🙂

http://giffgaff.com/orders/affiliate/annwwilkinson

Loving this learning Lark!

As you have gathered if you read my last post, I have started on some Adult education…

WHY????

What? Well why because I can!

Why because it’s probably the most asked question every.

Some people dread going into their 50’s, Well I am embracing it… I don’t feel over 50, I don’t think I look over 50 (yes I know the fat fills the wrinkles)

and I don’t act over like I am over 50.  I do own a first class ticket to get discount at the hornby shop and cafe in Broadstairs. which I admit is a bonus when I am buying more trains and airfix things for the boys……………… Ok back to as I was saying..

I reached a point last year when I passed my 50th birthday that It was time for me to move on from being Mum to being me and having left school with no qualifications whatsoever, I managed to get a job straight away, in fact I have never had a problem getting any job I wanted in my life……….

I had a fantastic job in the Embassy and then from there when I came back to the uk I got a great job back here as a PA to an owner director in a tool business and worked there until I fell pregnant with my first child Michael. I left that job because I moved out of the area and started work up in London for the M.O.D for a while, I took leave and had my baby . Sadly my son was born stillborn and after a few weeks I decided that I needed to move back to Kent. Again within a few weeks I started a new job, Got pregnant again, had my son Daniel and then had my twins John and Sarah a year after… when my twins were a few months old I decided that I really needed to work again.. to be honest we needed the money and my husband at the time was one of those people who had no intention of ever working in his life… He also had no intention of looking after three children under the age of one and a half.. My only option was to find a job that fitted in with the childcare I could get… My parents… so while my husband was out with friends etc… I went to work. My parents took it in turns who was coming around to babysit… My hours were from 7pm to 11pm every day.. so basically I had all three children in bed by the time they came round…

I did this for a few years until my eldest was 3 and I wanted to get him in to a playgroup, at the time there were so few spaces that It was impossible to find one so after talking to a few friends and people at work, they offered sponsorship for setting up a new playgroup. My friend was qualified for working with children and we started out local playgroup, I did the administration side and helped out while my friend “C” took the role of boss and hired two staff to work there with us.

The playgroup was full to capacity with children within two weeks, I don’t know if it was because we were the only place with spaces but word got around fast and people liked us, soon we had a longer waiting list than a lot of other local playgroups.

I worked there right up until my 4th child Andrew was born, I then took a few months off before I went back, there was no problems having him there while I worked as he was such a good baby and of course everyone loved him, I then fell pregnant again and had my 5th child Hayley.. Now my first three children had started school and I had the two little ones… both too young for the playgroup but one very active toddler and a baby, this meant that working at the playgroup was getting impossible.

So I took a step back and just did the paperwork etc from home… Not long after this I moved to another town as we needed a bigger house………. I soon made friends and found someone who would look after my two little ones while I worked in the local shop.

this I did right up until my marriage broke up and there was a big split in the family. at this point I got another job in a radio station as a presenter and also in advertising, To be honest I preferred the background work to the being “On Air” side of things, Not long after I found myself pregnant again with my new partners baby.

Baby number 6…Alex.

My partner Allan was a head chef and working long hours……. So it got to the point where we had a newborn baby, I was leaving for work at 6.00am for a 7am start while my other half looked after Alex while I was at work, I would finish work about 2pm, get home for about 2.30pm and take over the responsible parent bit, looking after our son, then he would leave for his job as head chef in a big pub about 3.30pm….. and work right through and by the time he had finished supervising the clean up at the end of the night it would be about 1am when he got back in…. and I left for work at 6am and so the circle went on and on until my son was about 3 months old. Not only did we get the keys to our first house together as a family the first week of March, I also got very sick, I had a lump in my throat which had become more and more uncomfortable, this I had ignored for quite a long time but the day after we got the keys to the house I went to work in the morning and by 10am was so ill an ambulance was called and I was rushed off to hospital. I had an infected tumour and blood poisoning.. The be all and end all of it was I was seriously ill and in hospital and my other half was looking after a 3month old baby and moving into our house and visiting me in hospital. I decided then while I was there that if I made it.

(I honestly thought I was going to die at one point)

I would spend more time with my son.

So when I was discharged a few weeks later I spoke to my boss at the radio station and he agreed I could work from home for the sales part getting advertising for the radio station and then once I had appointments booked I would go out on the road to meetings so I could arrange them to fit in with my schedule … The problem with that is trying to hold a conversation by telesales with a baby /small child in the background.. after a while and a long discussion with my partner it was decided that I would for the first time in my life become a stay at home mum full-time.

Not only was I a stay at home mum to Alex I also had another baby who was baby number 7 for me which was Ali,  plus we had my step daughters Amber and Tammy, visit every other weekend ….. so that’s us…. 9 kids between us…..

So there I am, a stay at home mum. Don’t get me wrong I have loved each and every second of being there seeing all the milestones with my two sons that I missed with my other 5 children but when I got to 50 and Ali was settled in school I started to feel bored… I love being there for my kids and because Ali is a very special child for want of a better description He is Autistic although not what they class as very severe but can be very hard work at times, Socially Inept, and struggles to deal with any change at times, and is partially sighted being legally blind in one eye and extremely far-sighted in the other eye. This means that working full-time would be impossible for me. I need to be there for him during school holidays…. so what can I do… I needed to get the brain cells going again….. and although I have a lot of friends, I wanted something more challenging.. Allan has become a scout leader and I do a lot of help there…

We both had have red cross first aid experience in the past and when Allan did his first aid course for the scouts to get his back up to date I did mine as well, I then went on to do a course to obtain my Emergency First Aid at Work-Appointed Persons Certificate, which I did so I am a fully qualified first aider and rapid response at work first aider…

I do a lot of baking and love the sugar craft aspect of it, anyone can throw a slab of icing over a cake and cut out a few shapes and stick them on the top, but to make lovely roses etc takes real skill and I had always wanted to be able to do it , so I went on two sugarcraft courses, one basic and one advanced where you make the bouquets etc to go on top of wedding cakes as well. I loved every second but sadly this is not the sort of thing you put on your everyday cakes but I do practice and keep up most weeks.

So here we are now….. I am embarking on a course for supporting children’s learning… Why Not…….. the hours fit in with school hours and if I want It’s a skill and qualification that I can use to obtain a job.

That’s why!!

Anyway I wont go into too much detail on this blog but I am keeping another blog about the courses I am throwing myself into… and weekly work…….. homework… probably moaning and ranting and my homework,

http://50andstillyoung.wordpress.com/

I am officially a student again!

I am embarking on a course for Supporting
Children’s Learning –  QCF qualification, also known as a NVQ qualification.

Basically its for
Teaching assistants  (known as classroom assistants or learning support assistants in some schools)

I have in the past helped out with the schools over the years listening to reading etc, more so when my eldest three were at school.

Why have I decided to take this? well to be honest I was offered the course and I thought why not………

I had more than my fair share of kids over the years,  when my oldest ones were younger I first helped set up and run a preschool playgroup because at the time there were so few about and such a huge demand for preschool places. and like I said, I  have helped out in the schools in the past with reading etc and gone on school trips.  I help out with the scouts etc, being an occasional helper, Allan is a leader and we both are busy on the scout van at least two or three days a week collecting cardboard and newspapers to recycle and then taking it to the mill and weighing it all in, this alone takes about 5 hours a day, usually Tuesdays and Wednesday with the extra day usually being Thursday or Friday , and now I training to be a TA….. Mainly because Ali needs a lot of support at school, Not because he is behind but because he needs one to one because of his sight and other problems mainly social to be honest.. The joys of having an Autistic child. and it hopefully will enable me to help him more at home.

The course itself is a very intensive course which is crammed into a 10 week period instead of over a year and apparently will involve a lot of homework,.
(arrgggghhhh my nemesis when I was at school, as I hated homework with a passion)

On top of this both Allan and I through our volunteer work with the scouts and through the adult education because of the courses we have taken, be it cake decorating, sugercraft or in my case First Aid and emergency response first Aid at work, among other courses, have been nominated to become  Learning Champions,  basically we
Promote adult education to help people gain confidence in themselves and skills/experience in areas they might otherwise not have known they were capable of in order to enhance their lives and that of those around them.

 This work will enable large numbers of volunteer learning champions to make a difference in two ways: by encouraging neighbors, friends and workmates to take up learning and job opportunities; by acting as role models, showing that it is never too late to take up new skills and new career routes.The project aims to create more learning opportunities which meet the needs of adult learners.

This also involves a course starting in October but that is only on a Friday again during school term times.

 Anyway I am fitting this in with everything else in my usual busy week so wish me luck…….

 

OUCH!!!

Take note:
When you have cast iron casserole pans with lids, when you put the lid in the kitchen sink after it has been in the oven for a couple of hours, Do not attempt to move it a few min’s later.  It will still be hot enough to melt your fingers, on the plus side if I had to be finger printed in the next few days one finger would be smooth as It’s just smooth and red and sore, the other one is blistered and very sore. A mistake I will not repeat again.

image

Just as well I am a qualified first aider lol I even hold an Emergency First Aid at work
“Appointed Persons” Certificate

Time flys past in the Summer Holiday.

Now I have more time, Everyone is still in bed and I can actually get on my pc without the boys taking over the pc’s I will catch up on the last three weeks of the summer break.

I’m not going to ramble on for ages. we went to loads and loads of places, the park I lost count of how many times we went there… but here are a few highlights of the last three weeks.

The memorial fly over at Headcorn Combined Ops

The memorial fly over at Headcorn Combined Ops

Ali with the BB Gun range.. they both love shooting it doesn't matter if its Airguns or BB guns..

Ali with the BB Gun range.. they both love shooting it doesn’t matter if its Airguns or BB guns..

Alex showing off his target and complaining the sights are out

Alex showing off his target and complaining the sights are out

The obligatory Ice cream you have to have on outings

The obligatory Ice cream you have to have on outings

A trip to Fun Drum indoor adventure

A trip to Fun Drum indoor adventure

Sitting on the bouncy castle at the Invicta Arachnid club fun day

Sitting on the bouncy castle at the Invicta Arachnid club fun day

Allan setting up the disco for the funday at the arachnid club

Allan setting up the disco for the funday at the arachnid club its actually smoky because they were testing out the smoke machine  

they had a Magician at the funday, Ali enjoyed it but as usual started off on his own at the back, but towards the end he really surprised us and sat closer and interacted a bit with the poor guy who worked so hard to involve him

they had a Magician at the funday, Ali enjoyed it but as usual started off on his own at the back, but towards the end he really surprised us and sat closer and interacted a bit with the poor guy who worked so hard to involve him

We went to a friend and neighbours wedding and reception

We went to a friend and neighbours wedding and reception

Boys after a long day at the wedding reception, they had got to the point where they wanted to go home so what better to keep them amused... give them our phones.

Boys after a long day at the wedding reception, they had got to the point where they wanted to go home so what better to keep them amused… give them our phones.

Ali munching at his Aunty Debz 40th Birthday Party

Ali munching at his Aunty Debz 40th Birthday Party

Alex at Debz party

Alex at Debz party

oh Look Allan lining up some requests for the disco at debz 40th Partry

oh Look Allan lining up some requests for the disco at debz 40th Partry

And the Lovely Debz herself

And the Lovely Debz herself

We went on a bee tour at Flynn's Bee Farm and they showed us a transparent hive   if you want to know more here is their website  http://www.flynnsbeefarm.co.uk/gallery.php

We went on a bee tour at Flynn’s Bee Farm and they showed us a transparent hive
if you want to know more here is their website
http://www.flynnsbeefarm.co.uk/gallery.php

Ali holding up one of the trays for collecting the honey

Ali holding up one of the trays for collecting the honey

Alex all ready to get some honey

Alex all ready to get some honey

After wards we had tea, Ali had, had enough by now and as usual went off by himself.. he doesnt do people and the older he gets the worse he seems to get. even with us nowadays.

After wards we had tea, Ali had, had enough by now and as usual went off by himself.. he doesn’t do people and the older he gets the worse he seems to get. even with us nowadays.

we went to the Kent chrome and cruisers our local car show that is held once a year...

we went to the Kent chrome and cruisers our local car show that is held once a year…

boys checking out one of the 1000's of cars

boys checking out one of the 1000’s of cars

There was a guy doing balloon models and the boys set him a challenge. they wanted a motor bike and even insisted on what colours they had .. poor guy

There was a guy doing balloon models and the boys set him a challenge. they wanted a motor bike and even insisted on what colours they had .. poor guy

We have the most lovely country park near us where we often take the dogs for a walk,

We have the most lovely country park near us where we often take the dogs for a walk,

Boys sitting having a rest before we start picking

Boys sitting having a rest before we start picking

well its blackberry season so off we went with the tub and we collected loads from around and made our own jam.

well its blackberry season so off we went with the tub and we collected loads from around and made our own jam.

some of the blackberrys we picked.. ok i say we picked, I mean the boys picked.

some of the blackberry’s we picked.. ok i say we picked, I mean the boys picked.

End result Jam..   Alex did most of the work and Ali wrote on the labels

End result Jam.. Alex did most of the work and Ali wrote on the labels

My favourite picture of the day.. and the end of the catch up :)

My favourite picture of the day.. and the end of the catch up 🙂

We have the most lovely country park near us where we often take the dogs for a walk,

We have the most lovely country park near us where we often take the dogs for a walk,

And that's the end of the summer break for 2013

And that’s the end of the summer break for 2013

Not to mention there has been lots and lots of baking 🙂

End of the Holidays at last

back-to-school-shopping-557x417

 

To say this week was anything but insanely busy would be a lie!

As well as having our usual Cardboard collecting in the van for the scouts that we do every Tuesday and Wednesday, we also had some major clearing out to do, the end of summer holiday de-clutter I call it, you know when the kids get stuff out and it never gets put away because we are always to busy to do it or just off out.

Allan has been away on a training camp this weekend so I made the most of his absence.

The school holidays are all but over, so while he was gone my mind was turned to what was needed for next Thursday when they go back to school.

I have always with all my kids, gone out and stocked up on everything new for september.

Its kind of new start a new term. It shows the kids that school is important and I always feel sorry for the kids who go back the first few days of school in tatty stuff… It’s not like people don’t know what is needed… I usually find things start wearing out by the beginning of June so we are then down to one uniform.. Ok trousers may be replaced as we go on due to either knees being torn or the fact that they have just grown out of them. I have what I call the school fund.. I put money away each week so at the end of the summer holidays I can go out and kit them both out and that is exactly what I did.

 

New Shoes, New Shirts, Trousers, This year I didn’t need new pe shirts and shorts as I had to replace them round about last April as they had outgrown them so they will do for now, but they did need a new track suit and of course new Trainers for PE. I always go to Clarke’s for the shoes, Sports Direct for Trainers and M&S for the Shirts and Trousers, Their jumpers I have to buy from the school so will pick those up in the next week or two when they are actually back.

If it turns cold their old ones still fit as I bought them big last time.

 

My boys are big lads, Not big as in fat, Although Ali is a little on the chubby side compared to Alex but big as in Tall, We actually measured Alex the other day and he is now 5″ 3 and Ali is just under 5ft. They both take age 16 clothes. although its easier to get small mens but I confess a few of their t-shirts I have bought them at things like the car show the other week I picked up L mens so they are a bit baggy on them and have loads of room to grow.

The scary thing is their shoes… Size 8….. Not kids size 8 I am talking full-grown man size 8 OMG… these kids are 7 and 9, I hate to think what size they will take when they are older…..

So we are nearly ready now, I bought the last few bits in the savacentre yesterday, like new back pack’s, packed lunch bags, pens, pencils, you know, the accessories that go with school.

So Sunday lunch consisted of Burger king for me and the boys had KFC and I now have 6 full sets of uniform still in their bags just waiting to have the name labels sewn on and we will be ready to go. (I always get three of everything each, with a few extra shirts on top of that thrown in) It saves on that moment of panic when they come home covered in mud and either having to rush around washing for the next morning or panicking because their spare set isn’t dry yet.

All that is needed now is haircuts after their bath tonight and we will be set.

 

Bring on Thursday the 5th when they actually go back to school, Although it will still be busy then because its my usual shop day as well and then I will be packing ready to go away Friday as we are at Camber Sands for the weekend, A little end of holiday trip I booked months and months ago, We literally collect the boys straight from school on Friday and drive there, have three nights away and leave early Monday morning and drop the boys off at school so we can then get home and unload the car and unpack,

As much as I love having the boys home I can’t wait until then because that’s when the normality of the boys being back at school really will hit home

(I need some peace…)