A Residence Blog

Travel and adventure taking, memory and home making, parenting and play shaking, never faking, tales of family life.

A Residence Blog

Travel and adventure taking, memory and home making, parenting and play shaking, never faking, tales of family life.

One woman and her dog (and kids) – How to learn to ride a bike


In celebration of a new outdoor summer play range, including kids bikes from ASDA we made a little how to learn to ride a bike video showcasing this blue Bad Fish Piranha BMX we were sent to test out. It arrived in a box with just a few stages to get it road ready. I managed the first 3, Mr A the latter when I gave up. Turns out there is a very simple You Tube tutorial.

Both kids cracked bike riding at Easter, and having overcome their wobbles, felt they were ready to vlog and bike ride simultaneously.

So this is how to learn to ride a bike, we found breaking it down into stages really helpful. I wrote about it over on parentshaped, but I think it helps to see it.  Max the greyhound features too, we tried to get him to demonstrate his sporting ability on the cricket field afterwards.



I’m really honoured to be a finalist for the third year running in the Britmums Brilliance in Blogging Video Award, thanks so much for all the votes! I’m loving making video more than ever, and the kids seem to be getting as much out of it as I do.

If you’ve enjoyed this please do subscribe to my You Tube channel, thank you.


Gaga Theatre Co: Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers


Fans of Oliver Jeffers magical children’s books will be pleased to know Ga Ga Theatre Company’s production of Up and Down is touring currently in London and the South West. We are big Jeffers fans in this house. Last week I was chatting to Kirsty at Damson Lane, she’s someone who really knows children’s books and this book came up in conversation as being in her top five picture books. Continue reading

The Perfect Situation – Somerset Yurts

Good Morning! I’m in a party mood, its my birthday today, well Thursday – i’m posting this a smidgen early.

I have to go back and keep watching this Instagram video, what an amazing weekend with Somerset Yurts with my family and Annie and family – who you can see snuck in the video. I can’t begin to tell you what a transformative experience yurting was, how much we packed in, how happy being in a field made me. I wasn’t made to live in suburbia, it takes its toll, I need to get out often and go find a happy place. Continue reading

#SheCan – Make June the month you help women


Mugunga refugee camp, the Democratic Republic of Congo Photo: Lionel Healing/ActionAid Read more at http://www.actionaid.org.uk/news-and-views/news-blog/2014/05/29/the-worst-period-of-her-life-putting-myself-in-her-shoes#P15gH2M4IiL148cp.99

It was in a toilet at a service station that I suddenly found myself enraged about women’s rights. It feels like enough is enough at the moment, I’ve been following the No More Page Three campaign, quietly sharing status updates and raging about the fact we still have page three.

Those things might annoy me, but I feel indescribable anger when surrounded by stories of rape, murder, stoning to death, women at risk of FGM being deported – women being treated in appalling ways around the world. I know many women in my life feel strongly too, that the images flooding our Facebook streams make us want to change the world. The statistics are shocking. Continue reading

Property management with the Landlord app

Old keyshttps://www.flickr.com/photos/practicalowl/248282683 Old keys by Kit, on Flickr

If you rent out a house or flat, you will know property management can be a real headache. We fell into renting our old place, we never sold our flat in London when we moved to Nottingham because I was pregnant at the time and it just seemed too much hassle. We rented it out, rented in Nottingham and it worked out okay and gradually we even released some equity in order to buy up here. We optimistically started to refer to the flat as our pension. Continue reading

Camp Bestival Festival 2014 – tips from bloggers

Katie from Chubs and Love, Lucy from Lulastic, Me, and Becky from Munchies and Munchkins

One of the biggest challenges for festival organisers is communicating to parents exactly what festival going with kids is like.  I looked to other people’s blog posts to help me decide what to pack, expect and to do for our last two years at Camp Bestival, and lots of people looked at my packing list. Now I can’t wait for Camp Bestival festival 2014, we might even manage to get the glam into camping this year!

These ladies above (bar me) go to show that babies are perfectly portable and able to join the fun at Camp Bestival. It is even possible while pregnant! Check out ChubsandLoveLulastic and Munchies and Munchkins for more advice, tips and ideas!

So I thought I would share the line up and share some great posts from other bloggers to help you decide that Camp Bestival festival 2014 IS what you need in your life!

To be honest the line up doesn’t matter hugely to me, there is so much cool stuff to do that the bands are a bonus, but look at this, how excited am I? Continue reading

Trying Decoupage with Baker Ross


  1. the decoration of the surface of an object with paper cut-outs.

I just wanted to share our latest crafting project with the contents of our lovely box from Baker Ross. Decoupage was just the thing for us, messy, free-form but with a useful end result! Continue reading

Family Festivals – Wheee! and Neat 14 Nottingham and Camp Bestival, Dorset.


We’re getting oh so excited about family festivals in the Alexander Residence, We’re heading back to the amazing Camp Bestival for the third time at the start of August, which is where we first encountered Square Peg, who perform Rime and incredible acrobatic version of Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

I just discovered they are in Nottingham performing it as part of Wheee! Children’s Festival at Lakeside Arts Centre this month and its FREE! You must see this if you are local! Wheee! is one of my favourite family festivals, bringing the world’s most innovative and exciting children’s theatre and dance to Nottingham, its an utterly amazing thing to have in our city.

Wheee! combines this year with it’s parent festival Neat 14 an amazing programme of world class arts events from around the world, in Nottingham over the last week in May. I do feel incredibly lucky to live here!


Plus loads of free creative fun – the perfect half term boredom buster. It’s not a camping festival, so perfect for a day out or for dipping into during May. Continue reading

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