The Oliver's Madhouse

When Life Isn't Complicated Enough

Ranty Friday – Some Companies

ranty friday - some companies

Right hands up in the air … yes I am a fairly new blogger…

This does not make me stupid nor an idiot, what it does mean is I am eager to learn all about the crazy complex world in which I now find myself.

I have been very kindly asked over the last 3 nearly 4 months to participate in reviewing some items and I have been then given them to keep. Great stuff who doesn’t like being honest and get to keep stuff!

The companies I have dealt with up until now and the ones I am dealing with currently I need to point out have been absolutely amazing and I do have to say that this rant does not in any way represent them.

They have understood the need to ensure the product is relevant to my family, they have allowed me to carry out the review to fit into my time frame and have not grumbled once when I have attached  negatives to the product or item I have reviewed for them, as lets face it you come to me you get an honest review.

My problem lies with companies which have contacted me out of the blue with  no idea at what my blog is about or the content in which I post on there.

The ones that I am talking about today send mass generated emails and expect a response, Why should  we respond when you obviously do not have any idea about what target market you’re aiming for as each and every blog is very different.

When you do make contact please be aware of what you’re wanting from me and my blog as my time is equally as precious as yours and I do not want to have to have a multiple email conversation in which I finally find out what you’re requiring.

Please take the time to find out what ages my children are so you don’t feel a little stupid when your asking me to review some newborn item in pink when in fact my daughter is nearly 12.

Until then Companies please please just treat us with some respect and honesty, to many of us our blogs are an extension to our families. We love you guys and will help but only if respected!

…. And remember I maybe fairly new now but one day maybe my blog will compete for world domination! …


The Oliver’s Madhouse 2012 Breakdown (not bad for a newbie!)

I started my blogging adventure in October of 2012 after many moons of being a secret reader and cant believe how rewarding this has been. Not only am I starting the New Year with some degree of sanity I am also having a great time!

I am sending all my best wishes to all my followers new and old and to all those people in my life that help me be me!

(The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog)

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,500 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 4 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.


A Big Blogging Shout Out!

thank you
This year has seen me finally take the plunge into blogging after a long time of just being a snooper and hider on other people’s blogs.

I want to give my first shout of thanks to Vicky  from Verily, Victoria Vocalises and Emma from The Cycling Mummy  who were my very first contacts from the BritMums Newbie Group, they have held my hand and shown me the way through the maze that is blogging and they continue to inspire me. Ladies I will be eternally grateful!

Ember from Purple Crazy Mum’s Blog, you are my cyber sister and are most avid commenter and liker of my posts (even the rubbish ones!). I am looking forward to seeing you at Britmums and if we end up sharing a room you have been warned …. I snore!

Now after months of being a ‘Newbie’ and after seeing many linkys there are 2 people I have to say a massive thank you to for their support when I first joined their amazing linkys (by support I mean my continual email/twitter questions about what I needed to do to enter) Mummy Barrow I LOVE your Ranty Friday linky!! And I would be lost without my weekly rant! Charlotte from The Crumby Mummy your Fun Photo Fun linky is great! And thank you for adding me to a new group on Facebook recently for bloggers in my area! With your linkys I have gained many new followers and received lots of lovely comments from your followers too (big hugs ladies)

Karen from Woman Wife and Mum thank you for always being the one person I can tag in a Meme and you will complete it in a flash! Your blog is amazing and inspirational! I don’t comment enough and will endeavour to comment more in the New Year!

Talking of Memes I would like to thank Suzanne from 3 Children and It who has tagged me recently in some great Memes. I love them and when having a bit of a block on what to post next they are great at taking the pressure off and allow me to talk just about me! (BONUS)

Thank you Leyla from This Day I Love for being my partner in brussel sprout crime! I still have yet to think of a sprouty name for our gang! You’re on going tweets and blog comments are fantastic and really cheer me up. Your blog concept is lovely too you’re always so positive!

Mocha Beanie Mummy, thank you for hosting Silent Sunday, by linking up not only have I received some lovely comments I have been able to show some blog loving to others.  I have also been able to take some time to reflect on the pictures I have taken in the week and to show one off!

Sarah from The Puffin Diaries and Nichola from F.A.B Forty Mum you both have such amazing blogs and are so honest and all your posts come straight from the heart! No matter what crisis you may be going through you both amaze me! Although I do visit I don’t always comment and I will certainly make a New Year’s Resolution to spend more time over on your blogs and to comment more! (I am a bad follower, you may disown me if you wish *hangs head in shame*)

Although I am going to pretty much end all my blog loving there, I do have many followers that take the time to comment on posts, as there are way too many of you I cant really name you all as I will still be here tomorrow! I want you all to know that I am so grateful that you take the pity time and you come across and comment, tweet or email me, without your comments and tweets I have no doubt I would be lacking in the sanity department! SO LOVE TO YOU ALL!

My final shouts go to my kids for just being them, my mum for her continued blog support (and not thinking I was mad to blog in the first place) and to Ollie who even when he intermittently became a blogging widow he is very patient! Ollie I make a promise to you to  organise myself better so you don’t become a blogging widow in 2013!

I am going to use this opportunity to say THANK YOU TO YOU ALL and to wish you all:


This is to be my final blog post until the New Year so I can spend more quality Christmas time with my family (I am sure you all understand). I will no doubt still be flitting round commenting on your blog posts, tweeting or trying to build my Facebook blog page (shh don’t tell the hubby)

This is a blog hop from the lovely Angie from Cakes Photo Life  if any of my blogging chums would like to enter please click here


Meme – Christmas


I have just been tagged by the amazing Nichola from over at F.A.B at Forty  to carry on the Christmas themed Meme.

As most of you know I bloody love Christmas so I couldn’t wait to start on this one!

Since we haven’t yet got our decorations up I need no excuses to partake in anything Christmassy!

So here goes…..

What is your favourite thing about Xmas?

For me it has to be several things, I love the lights and decorations, the nice food and films. However my most favorite thing is spending more quality time with my family and friends.

Whats your favourite make up look for the season?

I love smoky heavy makeup and before having children I would never be seen without heavy makeup. Although these days I barely have time to make sure I have eyebrows (years of over plucking is never good!)

Real or Fake tree?

I would absolutely LOVE to have a real tree they smell so fantastic!, but since I am a little OCD on the cleaning front I just know I would be having palpitation’s  every time a needle dropped and I would be afraid that all the extra vacuuming might just wear my poor old dyson out!

So having said I love real trees as you can guess we have a fake tree! (Less mess)

Giving or receiving presents?

I am a giver, I absolutely love buying and wrapping gifts although as some of you may know from my post 53 Days till Christmas  I am one of those annoyingly organised people who have completed their Christmas shopping weeks months before the big day.

What is your favourite Xmas film?

It’s not really a conventional  Christmas one but it is set at Christmas time – ‘The Family Stone’ it’s about a family who come together as adults and all the cock up and fighting and falling out that really happens at Christmas …. Love it!

I do also have to admit I do love the ‘Snowman’ too and already can’t wait for the 2nd one premiering on Christmas Eve ‘The Snowman and The Snow Dog’

What’s your favourite Xmas food?

TURKEY! It’s one of my all-time favs and I can’t believe we don’t have it more often! This year we are off out for lunch and much to Ollie’s annoyance I have still bought a MASSIVE turkey, which I intend to cook on Christmas Eve and then spend the next 4 days picking at it. I love making a cob out of it and one of my favourite concoctions from last year is a fresh cob, turkey, cheese and salad cream.

So having answered, I am going to pass it on to some of my lovely blogging chums:

Leyla @ This Day I Love

Ember @ Purple Crazy Mum’s Blog

Emma @ The Cycling Mummy

Kamelia @ Parenting With Purpose

Vickie @ 29 Year Old Mama


Meme – My Top Five Rant Inducers of the Moment

soap box

After an atrociously bad week here at the Oliver’s Mad House including bumping my car, chipped windscreens, temper tantrums (from all 4 of us) to much to do and not enough hours and all the while remaining calm and with a permanently plastered on smile (through gritted teeth) my blogging Chum Suzanne from 3 Children and It sent me a blogging Meme that could not of come at a better time! … My Top Five Rant Inducers of the Moment!

Soap box here I come ….

1. Parent & Child Parking: This is my all-time goat getter!

As some of you may know since early in my pregnancy with Joshua I developed Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD) it affects everything I do and I take medication daily to control the pain. Some things are made incredibly hard with this condition like picking things up and moving things (yes I am referring to my small child)

Why oh why do the lazy sods with no children think it is there god given privilege to park in these bays? Why is there need greater than mine? They are in fact designated to help parents with small children get easier access to their child due to the restrictive nature of car seats.

My ball breaker of a rant in all honesty has to be the disabled badge holders that even when there are free disabled spaces they park in parent and child bays anyway!  On one such occasion I felt brave and asked this person why they had taken the only parent and child bay when there were 6 disabled bays left that I couldn’t park in, I was told ‘ I have a blue badge I can park anywhere I like’

Hence my number one!

2. Smug Facebook Status’s & Claims from the Parenting Perfect

I am sure we have all seen them, they are the ones that update their status every 36 minutes with the perfect things their hubby, child and extended family are up too and how much they couldn’t live without them … but really who are they trying to kid??

Yes every now and again it’s nice to appreciate ones loved ones but does it have to go on Facebook and does their 1 year old really read them? And surly if they were all so damn perfect you would want to spend your time with them not sit on Facebook 24/7 playing games?? .. Maybe it’s just me? I will happily keep my crazy mixed up bunch over that any day, we have nothing to prove!
3. Cold Callers – Sod off ……. Its that simple, did I call you? No … then sod off

I have discovered recently after having been inundated with several each day through my mobile and home phone the quickest way to get rid is:

“ we are bankrupt and we private rent” saying this usually get them gone without any further utterance!
We now barely get any much to my delight.

4. Dog Poo – I push a pushchair so it has to be on my list!

Ok so I can’t blame the dogs but I can blame the owners, pick it bloody up!! Not only is it revolting and time consuming to clean down from pushchairs and shoes it can pass on infections and diseases to those who have poor immune systems or our little tots. You choose to have a dog so you HAVE to pick up its mess.

Cats are bad enough going anywhere they please but as dogs are not supposed to be just roaming you have no excuse to not pick it up … you are there!

5. Hypochondriacs – Bizarre I know .. 

I just don’t have the time for them, we all are full of ailments and issues but do we really have to make a mountain over a molehill … yes you have a head ache … that does not mean your suffering from a migraine … nor dying … nor does it mean you have to present yourself 3 times a week at the Drs to be told the same thing as every test on god’s green earth has been completed and come back with nothing for the last few years…..

Now I am hoping I will still have some followers and blogging chums left, so I am passing this one over now for some other fine blogging chums to vent.

Charlotte from: The Crumby Mummy                Sarah from: The Puffin Diaries
Leyla from: This Day I Love                                    Ember from: Purple Crazymum
Karen from: Women Wife and Mum


How Your Child See’s You – Meme

I was ‘tweeted’ this week by Karen who blogs over on themumstodolist about this great Meme where our child/ren draw a picture of how they see us as mummies.Obviously Joshua cant even draw yet and to be fair he would only eat the crayon so big sister Beth (11yrs) stepped in and was quite excited ….. what was i thinking??

So this evening i was presented with this: Imagei

I am very very pleased with this i have to say, my hair is nice and thick and she said she made it straight as “you always straighten it”  i am nicely in proportion which is the bit i am most pleased about, as really i am a shorty at 5″ and carrying rather too much of the baby weight for my liking, however she obviously doesn’t see that 🙂

However what i think has shocked me the most is i have a big grin!  Now as some of you may or may not know my daughter and i are experiencing a few issues, her pre-teen hormones and my inability to be able to reason, cajole, argue or even get an honest answer from her is driving me insane, so needless to say most of the time i am experiencing life through gritted teeth. So maybe she doesn’t see the gritted teeth or the frustration?? This is good!!

Looking at the eyes i think she must think i am some sort of demon, however i can live with that 🙂

I am now going to ask some others to join in the fun:


I’ve been tagged in a meme through the BritMums blogging network … so here goes:

I’ve been tagged in a meme through the BritMums blogging network. This is the first one i have been tagged in, so i hope i don’t look an idiot and get it right!

These are the rules I’ve been given:
– post 5 random facts about yourself
– choose 5 other deserving blogs with less than 200 subscribers to nominate and link their blogs in your post.

– tell your nominees you have chosen them for this award by leaving a comment on their blogs
– answer the 5 questions the tagger has asked you and ask your own 5 questions to the people you nominate

– no tag backs

5 random facts about me:

1. I smoke (yes, yes i know its bad but its my 5 mins of peace)

2. It my heaviest i weighed over 17st (and i am only 5 foot tall)

3. I still have a fear of the hand that grabs you from under the bed.

4. I absolutely love horror films!

5. I’m OCD on cleaning and hate mess!!

The Questions given to me from:

1. If you have a favorite author why does their writing appeal to you?
I  don’t really have a favorite author however i do read detective type books and i am currently reading books by James Patterson.
2. What’s your favorite activity to do as a family?
We love (when funds allow) to go to the coast and love the Whitby area, earlier this year we eloped and married in Whitby with just us and the kids!
3. Why did you start blogging?
I love reading blogs and love actual reviews for product that can be found on blogs as they are tested by real people! I love the fact it opens up a hole new world of possibilities and that i can document our lives 🙂
4. When blogging which do you think is more important: quantity or quality?
Honesty, i have read in the past some blogs that while reading you can tell that the person is not being true or honest and if it feels false i don’t continue to follow.
5. What’s your favorite part of the day?
I do love first thing in the mornings with smiles from Joshua and Beth waffling about pre-teen hormonal subjects. I do also love the end of the day when the kids are tucked up in bed all safe and warm and me and the hubby gets to chill (and watch soaps!)
I’ve chosen to tag:

What am I doing?

Right now I am a couple of days into this blogging what am I doing? Although I am qualified on many apps on a computer this blogging lark is something completely different! I am however a little more positive now the hubby has seen what I have done/written so far and hasn’t laughed so maybe there is hope for me yet!


Hello world!

Wow … looks like i finally made that giant leap into blogging! .. is the world really ready for the crazy antics of our mad family? …….


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