Tag Archives: Roald Dahl

Birthdays, exams and an awards ceremony too

The last 10 days have been busy ones and I for one am glad to be heading into the last week of term, though the dawning of the school holidays definitely does not equate to any time off work for me this year. Looking back at my blog posts from previous years, it does appear that March and April are consistently a hectic time for us and this year was no different. World Book Day passed surprisingly easy, with M heading to school in his own clothes for his school’s Roald Dahl-themed day as he chose to represent “…a material witness at the trial of Goldilocks, Mummy…” in Dahl’s version of that well-loved Fairy tale.

We seamlessly segued from my 40th celebrations to M’s 11th birthday and onto my 4th blogaversary before celebrating Mother’s Day in fine style too. School presented its own challenges to both G and M, with homework tasks, concert rehearsals and posters revising the finer details of grammar and punctuation – fronted adverbials anyone? – filling our evenings and weekends. Next came 2 sets of exams: Performing Arts exams for both children with their Stagecoach school, followed just a few days later by M’s Grade 1 Cello exam, which I’m delighted to say he passed despite a persistent reluctance to give much more than a cursory nod to his daily practice. Continuing with the music theme, G performed with the school clarinet group at her school’s Spring music concert last week, whilst M is singing with his school choir at a regional music concert involving children from Junior schools across our county this week.

On top of all of that, we also managed to squeeze in a trip to London for 4 and an evening spent celebrating the success stories from this year’s FreeFrom Food Awards. Once again held at the Royal College of Physicians near Regent’s Park, the evening was a glittering event designed to recognise some of the fantastic freefrom products nominated this year and was a great opportunity to not only catch-up with friends from the allergy blogging world, but also try those tasty treats that had pipped their competitors to the winning post. Hosted by the fabulous Michelle Berriedale-Johnson, director of the FreeFrom Food Awards, with a helping hand from restaurateur, celebrity chef and awards patron, Antony Worrall-Thompson, the Awards were a real testament to the changes brought about in the Freefrom world over the last few years.

The complete list of winners from #FFFA17 can be found here, but the big winners of the night were Irish bakers, Bfree, whose Sweet Potato Wraps are impressively top 14 allergen free and won high praise from many of the judges for being “…enormously versatile, beautifully soft and pliable, a lovely warm colour and tasting delicious…” This year was the 10th anniversary of the FFFA and to acknowledge this remarkable achievement, nominations had been invited to recognise a Freefrom Super Hero from within the industry itself. There were 5 very worthy nominees, all of whom are, without a doubt, heroes within the Freefrom world, but there could only be one winner and the inspirational Clare Marriage of Doves Farm was chosen for her unquestionable dedication to the production of numerous flour blends that have transformed the lives of those having to bake freefrom.

It was a fantastic night and it was wonderful to be able to mingle with the crowds of fellow freefrom foodies, rather than negotiate them with a small child in a wheelchair as we did last year! G not only enjoyed helping herself to a number of the goodies on offer on the Winners’ Buffet, finding a new gluten-free favourite with Kelkin’s chocolate-flavoured teacakes, but also found the courage to strike up a brief conversation with her very own Super Hero, Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne, the creator of G’s gluten-free bread of choice, Genius. I can’t wait to see what the year ahead brings for the Freefrom industry and am definitely looking forward to #FFFA18!

A busy weekend

This weekend has been pencilled into my diary and the family calendar for several months.  It’s looking to be a busy and important weekend for us and allows us to give a little something back to GOSH too.


On Saturday, we are heading bright and early to London to attend the Allergy and Free From Show at Olympia.  I had been told about this show last year, but unfortunately the dates clashed with other plans and so I have been keeping my fingers crossed, waiting to hear about confirmed dates for 2013.  As soon as I knew them, the weekend was booked and I applied for a set of free tickets for us all.

I will give you more of an update after the weekend, but I have to say the line-up looks fantastic.  We are all excited about the potential to find and try some M-friendly foods and M is hoping that we might discover a product we haven’t already tried.  I have been told that this show is a must-do for any family dealing with allergies of any description, so if you should find yourself near Olympia at the weekend with nothing else to do and some allergies to accommodate, I would highly recommend you pop along and find out more for yourself.

That counts as a treat for M, well you have to take your treats where you can find them in our family, so Saturday night we have a treat planned with G particularly in mind.  Those of you who know us, will know that both G and M attend a Stagecoach Theatre School and that the whole family loves nothing more than a trip to the theatre, be it for pantomime, musical, ballet or play.  G and M both learned some songs from the hit musical Matilda in the lead up to Christmas and G has been longing to see the musical ever since.  We had attempted to book tickets back in January when we were visiting GOSH, but it was sold out and so we had no choice but postpone this show for another time.  As soon as we knew the weekend for the Allergy show, I knew we had to try and get tickets for Matilda too and this time we were successful.  The children both know we are going and I can’t wait to see their faces as we experience the magic of this well-known Roald Dahl story.


Finally, on Sunday we are taking part in the RBC Race for the Kids to raise funds for redevelopment work currently going on at GOSH.  We were late entries for this one as we had planned to spend Sunday at the Allergy show again.  However, during our visit to GOSH in May, M spotted a poster advertising the RBC Race at one of the Underground stations and instantly asked if we could take part.  As we are already in London for the weekend and we know that we will benefit from this redevelopment work during future visits and we had both children on-board and happy to complete the 5K challenge, I instantly signed us up.

One of the challenges that could face us on the day, other than working out where to leave our luggage and how to manage 2 scooters plus bags on the train, is the severe joint aches that M can suffer as a result of the EGID.  These can be close to crippling at times and even though I’m happy to be “mean Mummy” and insist that he works through his pain to continue whatever he’s doing, sometimes he’s just in too much discomfort to be happy.  I’m hoping that the excitement about completing the race, scooting the 5K course and raising funds for “his” hospital will be enough to see him round.  Again, you will need to check back next week to see how well we all did on the day.

Finally, we are raising money for GOSH and so I unashamedly plug the cause and ask that if you feel that you can give anything, however small, to support this much deserving hospital, then we would appreciate it.  My heartfelt thanks go to those who have already so generously supported us.  Remember that every little bit makes a huge difference for the children and families who have reason to go to GOSH.