Wardrobe Wars

wardrobe 3Becksie’s wardrobe was looking a little bit depressing! It was full of stuff! It was overwhelming and it was hard to deal with. So finally guided by the principles of our year with less we set to and sorted it out! We also did Ian’s and…… you guessed it Lizzie’s.

A team effort

A team effort

As is very often the case the starting was the hardest part but 5 minutes in Becksie was (sado alert) actually enjoying herself. A huge pile for the charity shop, a pile to ebay, a pile of things to offer to a few specific people and (Jen – chief make do and mender and the reason Becksie is now a regular patcher) a mending / to upcycle pile.

The mending pile!

The mending pile!

The result – a clutter free wardrobe, major mending satisfaction and a sense of freedom from ‘stuff’. Yes my friends we applied ‘no supermarket logic’ to our wardrobes and now feel better about our clothes. Every garment fits, suits and is in a mended state. We even have a list if the bits and pieces that we need to get in order to enhance our wardrobe. Top of Becksie’s list is……… a new dress which she is planning on making all by her self in order to a) have a new dress b) increase her sewing ability c) cross an item off her 30 list and d) in order to feel very proud of herself.

wardrobe 6Whilst clearing out the wardrobe Becksie found three pj tops that she had barely worn. Each of their pj bottom buddies are firm regulars but Becksie gets annoyed with the button up tops and prefers Ian’s t shirts to sleep in (too much info? Maybe!). Anyways these tops were crying out for an upcycle so Becksie made a few pairs of pj bottoms for Lizzie from the sleeves. After doing this she set herself the challenge of also making Lizzie a pj top from a very old (it’s from Tammy Girl Becksie has had it that long) top. So with only a pair of Lizzie’s existing PJ’s, scissors, pins, thread and her sewing machine she set out on an adventure which ended with the PJ top to tiddly toddler’s PJs upcycle! Amazing fun.wardrobe 1

One happy Lizzie, one happy Becksie.

Matchy Smatchy

Matchy Smatchy

PS – out of the PJ top scrap we also made Narna a gift so she too can be in the matchy smatcy club – Narna it’s in the post!

Remember to reduce, reuse, recycle!

PS – If you haven’t already we would be really grateful if you’d fill in our little impact study – you will be entered into our wonderful prize draw………



A little Challenge?

shop local 2Well that’s it folks, Christmas has been and gone and we are now in those weird few days between Christmas and New Year. Presents have been played with, admired and are starting to make their way to their new homes. Lizzie is pleased to be home and play with her ‘titchen’ and Becksie and Ian are cooking up some ideas for new blog mini series. And……. as soon as this blog post is done and dusted we are planning to watch television for the first time in a month.

That’s right we did it, we managed (over) a month without television and it really wasn’t all that painful, it has really got us thinking and we will post our thoughts about it very soon.shop local 4

Yesterday was an exciting old day as we made page 3 of  The Daily Mail. Ian was looking very dapper, Lizzie looks very beautiful and Becksie (whilst looking very Daily Mail) didn’t really look like herself – oh well. Of course there have been many comments on the story (some not so nice), mostly about the shopping lists not being comparable, Becksie having annoying hair and looking 39 eeeekk and double grrrrr) – it would seem that people have forgot to factor in that the pictures and list were an example shops – oh very dear. Today Becksie also did an interview with Larry Lamb for LBC radio, he was jolly nice and seemed very positive about finding alternative shopping methods and the interview seemed to spark a good debate. Anyway we figure if your reading this you get where we are coming and can see the merits of local shopping.

Which bring us to the point of the post……….

As we said its nearly New Year and what happens at New Year? Of course we all make New Year’s resolutions. Last year we decided to get more organised and we think on the whole we have succeed. We are spending some time thinking up our resolutions for next year and thought that you might also be doing the same.

shop local

Well…….. we have a suggestion, why not make a pledge to make 2014  the year of local shopping. We know that our challenge is perhaps the extreme and some of you have said it would be impossible where you live, however (again) if you are reading this you probably are already doing this at least a little and certainly care about local shops, so why not get involved (even in a small way), for example challenging yourselves to only buy meat from the butchers?

You could also pop over to the Shop Local website to pledge your support for what we think is a brilliant and worthwhile campaign. Who knows you might even get information about campaigns and events and……top tips on how to make this local shopping lark work for you.

We’d also like to put a little appeal out…………………….we would love to feature some guest blogs from readers who are either currently local shopping or take it up as part of a New Year’s resolution – please do contact us!

And if we don’t see you before, Happy New Year!!

Decorators need ice lollies

lolly 5Today Team Pugh have started the task of redecorating the living room! Since getting the new sofa the previous shade of a very pale green didn’t look so good. When we first got the sofa we chose the colour and as our curtains had been custom made (well altered by Mammar) we decided to dye them from sage green to a deep purple. We were nervous but it was a success so all that remained was the painting!

We didn’t want to start as we were also nervous about getting paint on the carpet so….. As Lizzie napped today, Ian prepared the room and Becksie went to Millets to do our penultimate shop of our challenge.

lolly 3Painting is going well but we can’t yet  tell you about the shopping as there is no space to photograph it! Our house is a state and dinner was a humble jacket spud with cheese and beans! But what to have for pudding? Every decorating daddy and lovely tiddley human needs an ice lolly! So enter our zuko!!

lolly 1This might seem like a product review and it is but its not one we’ve been asked or paid to do its simply a glowing report of a gadget we think is really good!

lolly 6You freeze the Zuko and then when its frozen remove it from the freeze and add juice, yogurt, milk, fruit etc etc to the molds which freezes it into perfect lollies in about 10 minutes! Its genius and means that small folk can have a ready, healthy and cheap lollies on hand! Its also easy to clean and great as it fills a gap in the freezer should you need to do atop up batch cook and it can be removed and stored in a draw when one has no space!

lolly 7 It gets a thumbs up from us and in the few years we have owned it we have used it A LOT unlike many other kitchen gadgets! Also the sticks are reusable so it generates no rubbish!

lolly 8We hope everyone survives the storms that are forecast – we guess this should have been a hot chocolate post but in typical Team Pugh style we are defying convention. Stay safe folks!

Putting It Off



The top section of the cooker hood was missing for 15 months - it took 20 minutes to cut and fit.

The top section of the cooker hood was missing for 15 months – it took 20 minutes to cut and fit.

Team Pugh are uber proactive when they set their minds to it and once they have an idea in their heads and a bit between their teeth there can be no stopping them. But sometimes there are things that we just never quite get round to doing. We would love to say that we are too busy, that there are more important things to do but the truth is often we just don’t quite get round to doing these things because we really can’t be bothered. It is not even that we have a reason we do not want to do them, they just sit there waiting to be done.

A lot of these things around the house are left over from the renovations, usually when Ian decided to move on to something more important and more exciting, such as leaving (non-live) wires hanging from the ceiling instead of just wiring them into a switch or not boxing pipes in because the woodwork was a bit complex, or not quite getting round to scraping paint from windows to finish them off. All little jobs that don’t take long at all but for which there are a catalogue of reasons (excuses) not to do them. Becksie’s equivalents are tidying cupboards and finishing sewing and other projects. Little jobs that you look at every time you go in the room and think “grr I really need to do this” and that you waste so much energy thinking about. In fact we have been planning to write this post for some time but haven’t until now quite got round to it….

Putting it off 2

The big revelation for Team Pugh occurred a few weeks ago when we set about tarting up the garden and back of the house. We have some plastic cladding on the back of the house that has in places been a nice shade of weathered green for the entire time we have lived there. Why? Because we have not quite got round to cleaning it, despite constantly looking at it and thinking how much it needed doing. So, ladder, bucket and cloth in hand Ian made a start on the daunting task that took all of…..20 minutes, which included a change of water and another wipe over with a clean cloth. Why on earth have we not done it before? We are busy people, but we have lots of 20, 30 or 40 minute slots where we can do little jobs, and it is so much more satisfying just to get them done!

putting it off

So…..in the last few weeks Becksie has said she would like a proper washing line (as opposed to our whirlygigthingymajig that took over part of the garden), within minutes some spare line was found from the shed (everything always comes in handy in the end!), tied up and fully functioning! Some lose screws in a door have been promptly tightened and a blown kitchen lightbulb replaced on discovery (we have 8 bulbs in our kitchen and the bulbs live in the shed so we tend to just wait until we have lost so many bulbs we are struggling to see before replacing them). Becksie has been out pulling the weeds up as she has seen them appear, been watering every day, has refilled a hanging basket that has been a mess since we moved in and has been out painting a section of our fence every evening to get it done. Now the acid test for all this proactivity, our table and chairs, hmmm, well let’s get the fence done first then perhaps we will try to get them done……….

Words I never thought I’d say……

Ok…… here are some words Becksie NEVER EVER EVER thought she’d say….. ‘I think I might be enjoying gardening’!

Lizzie 'enjoying' snack time in the rain whilst mummy was gardening!

Lizzie ‘enjoying’ snack time in the rain whilst mummy was gardening!

Sit down people, we know this is a revelation mostly because it’s a revelation to us. BUT (never start a sentence with BUT especially all in capitals, its hugely terrible grammar) ever since Grandad Gray spent time sorting out our garden that was a disgrace Becksie has made an effort to:

a) Water if it’s not been wet.

b) Pull out weeds.

'eeeeeek mummy is still gardening - I'm getting wet'

‘eeeeeek mummy is still gardening – I’m getting wet’

c) Actually replace a hanging basket.

gardening 4

pre-sweeping up

d) Redo a sort of basket thing that hangs on the fence.

e) Sweep the patio.

f) Think about painting chair number 2 (but it rained so there wasn’t any point)

'Much better it's dry in here'

‘Much better it’s dry in here’

g) She has taken 2 trips to a garden centre (granted one of these times was a time killing exercise but it still counts).

One of our purchases - it's probably in the wrong place / soil or whatever but..... we're trying

One of our purchases – it’s probably in the wrong place / soil or whatever but….. we’re trying

h) Water the basket and pots outside the front of the house everyday.

i) Not kill a house plant someone gave us (more on this is a mo).

j) We have taken more care with our houseplants – watering them as necessary and not thinking ‘oh we’ll do it next week.

k) Looked at the box of seeds we owned and strongly considered planting some.

l) Picked up a free gardening magazine from the library swap box.

Bet you can't even tell which bits our garden and which bits the magazine cover (humour us please)

Bet you can’t even tell which bits our garden and which bits the magazine cover (humour us please)

m) Read a bit of a book about how to garden.

Come on then whose impressed? Well….. Becskie is impressed and is determined to try to keep on top of all of the above.

The plant the day we got it

The plant the day we got it

As for the a fore mentioned houseplant Becksie was given this by Sandie’s dad and was very pleased with it. Becksie asked for directions as to how not to kill it. The advice dispensed was a bright sunny place, keep it moist but not flooded. This Becksie did and the plant that is called a Pentas which had one head of pink flowers now has about six heads of pink flowers. It’s surely a triumph! To say Becksie is proud of this little plant is an understatement!

The plant now!

The plant now!

So there you have it, word’s you ever thought you’d hear. Word’s Becksie never thought she’d say. Long may it continue.