The sun's been shimmying in and out, burgers have been browning on the barbecues and flip-flopped feet have featured-which can only mean one thing-exam season! No matter what the weather has been like beforehand, you can be guaranteed that the sun will make an appearance at the same time as studying is taking place-reminding me of my late teenage years, lying in the back garden, head-to-toe in olive oil, poring over 'O Level' revision notes. Fast forward 30+ years and the last minute cramming for exams in the sunshine has been replaced with preparing others for their exams. This has caused me to become a bit of a hermit lately caused by the annual panic of making sure every piece of GCSE and A level coursework is submitted, marked, moderated, checked again, marks submitted, sample selected, marks checked again, sample checked for the umpteenth time. And once the dreaded coursework is packed off, it's time to frantically cram in as many exam revision sessions as possible before the dreaded exams begin. But there is one positive to come out of all of this-it is the one time of year when I will actively seek out jobs in the home that require attention-displacement therapy, me thinks!
My latest project involved giving an old tea trolley a bit of a makeover-bought from The Old Hen House. I loved the original brass handles and its display potential but it required a bit of TLC with some paint and polish and after I roped my dad into doing a bit of the painting, I discovered a great product from the White Cliffs Co. which is a 100% natural chalk paint powder which you basically add to any pot of paint to create a chalky paint effect! For £3.50 for 125g this is a bit of a God send as it means that you can paint any piece of furniture in your own choice of colour but with that lovely chalk finish.
Foe some unknown reason, there was a whopping great big hole cut out of one of the top sections and I had planned to have pieces of mirror cut to repair it but lo and behold, I found some lovely round mirrored place mats in TK Maxx which did the job perfectly. I had bought this dotty tea set in a car boot sale years ago for £5 but through time, a few bits have become broken so I was delighted when I found pieces of the same set on ebay. Instead of going for red again, I opted for the blue design this time which matches perfectly with the trolley and my kitchen.
I seem to spend my life trying to be more organised and constantly on the quest to fins storage solutions for the growing Lego and book collections in our home. The book shelves are full to over flowing, but as an English teacher, I'm loathed to throw out any and also don't fancy the idea of stashing them in the garage/roof space as they will result in them never being looked at again. Instead, I have stashed a load of them into this wooden crate which can easily be wheeled from room to room and surprisingly holds a large number of books.
I am on a never-ending quest to get on top of the ever growing collection of Lego in our house-do these mini characters actually reproduce??? Whilst I have sorted the problem to a certain extent in the playroom-oops, sorry-now known as 'the den'-the thought of these strange yellow heads glaring at me whilst I settle down for the evening unnerves me somewhat.
My solution was to buy a wire basket on wheels which randomly is exactly the same size as a kitchen tray which has been hijacked for the smaller Lego pieces so sits perfectly on top. Lex was horrified at the illogical idea of a wire basket holding tiny Lego parts-ever the scientist-and at first I had to agree. Seemed like a good idea at the time but now I wasn't so sure. However, how wrong he was, as randomly, the tiny Lego character hands fit perfectly around the wire structure. We now have an array of Ninjago warriors, Ninja Turtles and what seems like a miniature army of The Village People straddling the wire structure. It has turned into a great source of entertainment for Robbie and leads to him tidying up each night without even realising it. Result!
That's it from me-back to the sorting and organising-the story of my life!