This post contains affiliate links which help pay for the running of this website. You don’t really need to know a lot before setting off for the beach or swimming pool in France but they do have some rules that may surprise you. It’s best to be prepared. I get the impression that French people spend a lot more time at the beach than we do. Not only do they have a lot of lovely coastline but also the weather is just that bit better. (Okay! Quite a lot better!) Lifeguards and “baignade surveillee” Public beaches have monitoring stations and…

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Summer has barely started and we’ve already had both bees and wasps making nests on our property. It’s always a surprise when we find them, after all they didn’t call ahead before arriving! This is the first year we have had both bees and wasps at the same time. When this happens we have to decide if we’re going to do something about the nests. After all, my first thought is “oh no, they sting!” but this isn’t always true. Wasps’ nests About ten years ago we had a wasps nest in an airbrick outside the kitchen door. They were…

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Are you off on your holidays soon? Best wishes if you are. I don’t know anyone who goes away for every day of every school holiday, there are too many. If you have time at home perhaps or have time to kill in the school holidays, how about getting your children to help you plan how to fill the days? When I teach my girls to plan their time I find they don’t respond so well to rigid lists and timetables. They don’t want tick-boxes or calendars with all their time and activities marked out. So using a bit of…

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Several years ago my talented friend Karen the photographer invited me to join Pinterest. You used to have to have an invitation, way back then. I quickly became hooked on this visual social media platform with a link in every image to some fascinating fact or blog or website. I enjoyed curating my thoughts and bookmarks by pinning them to virtual pin-boards. Then I discovered that other people liked to follow me. It’s a bit addictive, like Candy Crush. A few months ago Pinterest changed their algorithm, their categorisations and their popularity index (repins). It’s not much fun anymore; people…

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Back in January I decided that I would change something quite fundamental about myself: I decided that I would become A Runner. This is so improbable; it is like saying that the sun would become Quite Cold. Why did I want this? Because I felt unhealthy, unfit and quite envious of my many sporty friends. I felt the need for speed. I didn’t really believe I could do it, not least because of my dratted painful hypermobile feet. All the same my Couch to 5k journey started quite well. Here’s the link to my first blog about it. Too sore…

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