Saturday, April 10, 2010

Oh happy days...

Today has just been one of those that days when everything has slotted nicely into place.  I woke up this morning full of the joys, and really hoped that nothing would change that and dampen my mood.  I haven't felt happy and fully fighting-fit for a long-ish while (ok, read as a couple of weeks), but I'm such an upbeat and positive person I struggle when my health isn't 100% and I can't complete my daily plans.

So, back onto today.  First job (after the usual morning routine of cleaning, breakfast, post-foodie cleaning, etc), was to nip out to collect some exercise books that someone had kindly offered on Freegle (same sort of ethos as Freecycle - keeping useful things out of landfills and all that).  The advert for the books had clearly stated that the preferred new home would be within a homeschooling family - my ears pricked up when I heard that (Ok, don't be so picky - I know I read it on the screen as an email message so didn't actually hear anything other than my own thoughts - but humour me ok?)   I read the message a little late, having made a conscious decision to spend less time on the computer (which is wonderful), and more time enjoying real life (which is even more wonderful), and had being particularly fortunate to have been able to relish a few hours with the children in the garden on this occasion.  However, I tried my luck anyway and sent off a message detailing who we were and what a good home the books would be getting (a mixture of graph, squared, and plain paged books were up for grabs).  I know my lot would put them to full use, and anything to save a few pennies is more than welcome this month, believe me!  I'm trying not to show utter financial desperation there, did you pick that up??

Anyway to cut a long story short, we were offered the lot as the first "genuine homeschoolers" that had replied.  I was a happy bunny at that news, purely because I have replied to so many adverts on Freegle and Freecycle and it is usually an absolute frutile procedure.  At last, I was a winner!!!  Things are snapped up so very quickly - which is great if they go to people that need them - but sad when you later hear the tales of the items quickly being sold on ebay/car boot sale/local paper/preloved.  Yes, it's happened many times, and many times I have cursed those nasty money grabbing sellers and stamped my feet with woes of "But I NEEDED that!" coupled with extremely sad facial expressions.  See the emphasise on need?

So, this morning we set off in the car to town to pick up the books from a very lovely lady.  Job done and dusted, me all smiles with my "prize".

After a nifty bit of window shopping (although Tiegan broke the browsing only rule and managed to get 2 Horrid Henry books from the charity shop), we headed back home.

Over lunch I checked my emails and went to write a thank you and received message for the books on Freegle.  I noticed an advert on there for a set of Pine Bunk Beds.  We have often commented on how much better the boys room would be with an ordinary set of bunk beds.  They have had a single bed, with a large high sleeper in their room for a long time.  The (rather wobbly) high sleeper was just a bit too short for the single bed to fit beneath it, meaning we had to have the single bed along the wall in one direction, with the sleeper going in the other.  The high bed also had a ladder sticking out about a foot from the side of it, which made a huge difference to the look and feel of the size of the room.  Anyway, I'm rambling as per usual, so will get back to the point.

It was an hour and a half after the message had been posted, and I was fully expecting the beds to have been snapped up (bunks are in very high demand - actually anything offered on Freegle/Freecycle seems to be in very high demand, I think it must be the "something for nothing" mentality that we all enjoy).  I took time writing the email, figuring I had nothing to lose spending a little longer on typing a nice pleasant and polite plea.  To my huge surprise I received a reply within minutes saying they were mine!!!  Apparently they had received many many replies, but they had sifted through and chosen the one that was polite and for the good of a family.  Oh now I was really happy!

Within half an hour we were back in the car and loading the boot with a wonderful set of bunk beds.

Before anyone has horrific visions of our disgusting greed - replying to two Freegle postings - I would just like to say that we have ourselves offered many an item, including two old cars, an exercise bike, and a weight bench.  I have often been absolutely staggered by the bare cheek that some people demonstrate in their replys for offered goods.  We have had remarks such as "Yeah, I'll take them off you - will you deliver to...."  and "I guess I'll have it, phone me."  One person said that she would have an item from us, but couldn't pick it up for over 2 weeks, so if we wanted to deliver, we could.  We said we could hold on to it for her, and miraculously she could pick it up that afternoon.  On one occasion we were offering a whole host of various items, from books to kitchen bits and bobs, lamps, to car parts.  We had an email from someone that remarkably NEEDED every single thing we had to offer.  Needless to say we didn't take him up on the offer, if we wanted anyone to make financial gain from our items we would sell them ourselves, thank you.  I'm sure people forget that they are being offered something for absolutely nothing, so surely a please or thank you is the least you can offer. 

I'll jump off my soapbox now, are you still there??

Our afternoon has been spent dismantling two beds, and assembling bunks in their place.  They are FAB, no really, I mean FAB.  I love them, and the boys room looks much tidier and larger.  We took the opportunity to completely clean their room (again!) which was hard work but worth it.  The children helped as much as small people can help, and we were well rewarded with an impromptu barbeque for our efforts.

A bonus of this new bunks malarky is that Callum (almost 5 year old), has gone to sleep in his own bed, alone!  Usually he sleeps with one of the other children (he gave up co-sharing our bed a long time ago, I think he found 2 bodies too hot and crowded and he often crawled on top of the duvet during the night).    Lately he has been sleeping in Chelsea's bed, which although she doesn't ordinarily mind, she has made a few disgruntled noises of late and I think she would love a few nights of peace alone.  Callum isn't the easiest of children to sleep alongside.  He hogs the duvet, he is restless during sleep, he gets too hot and pushes the cover away, then gets too cold and wraps himself around it again.  He lies on top of the duvet, at the bottom of the bed, across the pillow - well you get the idea.   Tonight though, he has snuggled up, on his own, very proudly in his new bed.  He was asleep within 10 minutes of his head hitting the pillow - unheard of for the little man.  Maybe this is the start of a new routine - maybe I am hoping for too much - maybe, we will see :)

Tomorrow - what have we got planned for tomorrow.  Well, we will visit my parents again.  They have got a removals date for Spain now (towards the end of April), so we are helping with the clearing out and relocating of their goods.  We have had bags and boxes full of stuff, it's great!   Oooops, they will be sadly missed of course *grin*.  I also have a few things I want to put together home-ed wise too.  I have an idea for a "I've run out of ideas mum..." box, which the children will be able to refer to during those lacking in inspiration times.  I plan to put a few project ideas in there, with art and craft prompts, maybe a few new cake recipes and science experiments etc.  I will probably refer to it too, especially during those "Please stop bickering or mummy's head is going to explode" moments.  *grin*.  I also want to go through Tiegan's Brownie Badge book with her to look through what badges she wants to aim for next.  I'd really like to get the ball-rolling there.  I'm sure there was something else I wanted to do too...

Now, if only our lottery numbers had come up tonight, life today would have just been exquisitely peachy....*dreamy sigh*


  1. So glad everything's going well and you're feeling better hunny.
    Here's to the good times! Hurrah! xxxx

  2. aawww hun thats fab :-) we use freegle to and ive had a few great things, and given a few too :-) as far as i know freegle is freecycle, something to do with not being able to use the name over here?Glad you are feeling better xxxxx

  3. That's interesting as we still have a Freecycle group here. Husband belongs to that, and I belong to Freegle as it's less busy. Will have to do some research, thanks for letting me know :)

  4. Well done on the bunk-beds, I bet it makes a huge difference, we have Freegle groups in Hants, I managed to pick up an immaculate buggy for my 2 yr old 2day (I'm so pleased ;-))- I've freegled his old one on - but oh the rude responses and txt speak - I always wait for a polite reply !!

    Your "I've run out of ideas mum ..." box sounds great - might give that a go myself, thanks for the idea.

    Hope the happy days are here to stay!!

    (Now am I expecting too much for triple bunks to come up on Freegle - my 3 have decided they all want to sleep in the same room, well except my 2yo son - his sisters tell me he would be happy on the bottom bunk than climbing out of his cot ;-) )