On the 2nd March I climbed Snowdon with Team Honk and I vlogged the memory of climbing Snowdon too. I am so glad I did as I now have a better perspective of just how difficult that climb was! Meet my TeamHonk climbing companions and enjoy the spectacular views.

One big thank you to everyone who sponsored me, I contributed, thanks to you, over £450 and overall TeamHonk raised £9000 for our climb

THANK YOU XXXX

snowdon summitWhat a fabulous, marvellous, amazing, awesome experience I have just had, it will easily go down in my best evers.

I climbed Snowdon

The culprits of this expedition are #TeamHonk who I’ve been talking about now for a good few weeks. They sent me a postcard from Ghana and their latest hairbrain was to climb Snowdon to raise more funds for Comic Relief.

We stayed at the Snowdon Ranger Youth Hostel The drill was: up at 7.00, breakfast at 7.30, leave the building 7.45, meet up at the bottom of The Miners Path at 8.30 start walking at 9am.

Timings were non negotiable, estimated climbs say 3-4 hours up and about the same coming down plus Marit and Al, friends of Gemma‘s who had volunteered their time to accompany us wanted us safely down before sunset. Nikki from Stressy Mummy was our driver and we were lucky to have a beautiful sunny day.

Snowdon Miners path Excitement in the car park as red lacy knickers from Who Made Your Pants were handed out to all climbers to wear over our trousers, @HiTecSports had very kindly sent us along some super warm socks (not one blister!) and Mummy Barrow handed out bags of delicious brownies sent by @GowerCottage for energy snacks on route and encouraged her husband Bruce and son Johnnie as they started out on their trek with us

Snowdon Miners Path form Peny pass

The Miners route is a ‘gentle’ start working us in nicely, warming our muscles up and presenting us some spectacular views on route. Kate (Kate Takes 5) and Laura (My internal world), who had come over from Ireland thanks to Stena Line kept me company on the first part. Kim brought Hettie the hoover with her and her son Miles (testing the icy lake below)

Our first break was 1 hour into the trek at a beautiful iced lake set with a breathtaking backdrop of scraggy mountains.

Snowdon pitstop

Al pointed out a couple of climbers picking their way up the ice to the summit of Snowdon – little did I realise we would be doing something VERY similar shortly after. Greg, a fellow twin dad (Whisky for Aftershave) caught up with us having struggled to find parking and Emma (Bunny Pudding) and Jennifer (Jennifer’s Little World) enjoy a hot drink.

I asked Marit what was the next part of our route and she pointed to the sheer rock face in front of us where a stream of hikers were making their way up the tiniest shelf like path to a miniscule ledge higher up. Our next bit was to be

  • Sheer rock face
  • Icy covered rock face
  • Icy thin ledge to ridge
  • Snow covered slope to summit

In fact take a look at Annie’s blog Mammasaurus to see the trail for your self, she also has an.. er …interesting shot of my bloomers – g’wan take a look you know you want to.

Snowdon steep climb

This second part of our climb was hard going and testing but we took it slow and steady. The rocky mountain wasn’t too bad but as I lifted my legs and used rocks to pull on I knew my muscles were getting the workout of their lives. Hannah (Cupcake mumma) and Kat (Kat a Pillar) in pink tutus

Snowdon ice climb

The icy ledge in single file with sheer drop to the left and steep rocky mountain to the right. I thought, absurdly, of goats quite a bit.

The ridge was covered in snow with a few rocks pointing through and it was slowly turning into an ice rink. Below 1. Annie (Mammasaurus), Steph (I’m counting UFO’s) and Kat (Kat a Pillar) 2. Danielle (It started with a squish, who always managed to find a signal! 3. Kat (Kat a Pillar) 4. Penny (Alexander Residence) with lots of video to check out

Snowdon ice climb done

The last climb to reach the summit was difficult, it was icy, it was packed with climbers and it was steep but the shouts of jubilant cries coming from the top, the smiles on the faces of those who had made it was so inspiring NOTHING was going to stop me.

Snowdon summit

We made it, I sent a photo as I finally found a signal saying ‘I’m on top of the world with #Teamhonksnowdon and it’s the best feeling ever.’ It was sent and I want to say a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who saw it and RT’d it, liked it, shared it and spread the news of our challenge as #TeamHonkSnowdon had hit the £4,500 mark!

Snowdon lunchtime

The journey down was into Llanberis and trust me it may look gentle but it’s far from it. Luckily for me Annie (Mammasaurus) had a couple of gin-in-a-tin’s in her bag and handed one over, ‘After all it is your hen party’ she smiled at me.

Snowdon descent to Llanberis

The lovely Jennifer (Jennifer’s Little World) opening the gate for us. I had been warned that coming down was hard on the legs but I hadn’t realised how much. By the time the last few hundred meters were in sight my legs were giving way and Kat had told me earlier that walking backwards would help, I mentioned it to Penny and Jennifer who were with me at the time and we tried it, it was true! We managed the last bit past the pub and down onto a more gentle slope walking backwards.

Mummy Barrow was waiting for us at the bottom, lots of photos, knicker throwing and general laughter was had before setting off to the hotel for a drink.

mummy Barrow Snowdon photo

Would I do it again? Not immediately but yes. Somebody mentioned Ben Nevis, someone the Wicklow mountains but first I need to regain use of my legs and walk down the aisle!

Please visit the TeamHonk Snowdon fund raising page and a little love if you can xx We’ve teamed up with Clare Balding on her Twitter Million challenge

Another CRAZY week peeps. Last week I left you with cakes, daffodils and pretty pictures of lakes and sunsets. THIS week is another kettle of fish.

We ‘re taking it from Friday night as that was the biggie, my Hag party, why a hag? (hen/stag – kindly dreamt up by Jean) This is a second marriage for me and I think there’s an awful lot of ‘I really want to get this right this time’ having seen the last matrimony go so spectacularly down the pan. I wanted to make sure every choice had been thought out well and done ‘properly’. Last time round I asked my best friend at the time Claudia, to be the Italian equivalent to chief bridesmaid and, as life has a habit of doing, after a few years we never saw each other again. I have no idea where she is now and haven’t spoken to her in years. That’s not to say I don’t have feelings for her, I do, but we drifted apart.

THIS time round I chose my brother Dom to be my chief bridesmaid testimony. So it’s his job to organise the hen night, right?

Now I’m closer to 50 than 40 (I know you wouldn’t believe it but it’s the truth) so I didn’t want to be stumbling half naked around Dublin/Newcastle/add your own hen resort. I wanted a posh meal as it’s something we rarely get to enjoy these days.

MW Nails spitalfields

Organised to perfection by Dom er actually it was his girlfriend Jean but moving on – Nails beautifully manicured at MW Nails in Spitalfields with a glass of fizz whilst they’re being done (very posh) and yes, it is the inside or a real aeroplane.

The Ten Bells menu

Followed by a meal at the pop up restaurant The Ten Bells, I had fried squid, venison and chocolate pave. Dee.Li.Cious and then off to The Pit, which is a bar carved out of the underbelly of The Old Vic theatre in Waterloo.

Hag Party

The night was such fun we’ve decided to try and do one at least once a year and Paul can come next time too.

Saturday – I wasn’t on the best form ever but look at the Full English little bro prepared for me. He and Jean are working on all the printing for the wedding here’s a few glimpses hopefully without giving too much away

wedding ideas

Oh and I fell in love with one of Jean’s pictures hanging in the front room. It’s by an illustrator called Juju Delivery You can’t read it but her gloves have good written on one and evil on the other. LOVE that.

Juju delivery

Sunday – Feeling a bit better and whilst helping the girls do their ‘Bug Club’ online reading books, out of the window I see this bird feasting on the berries in our neighbour’s bush. As I write this (Friday) I can tell you he’s been back every day sometimes with the Mrs and now the bush is bare.

bird in a bush

Monday – Half Term is over and we’re back to school, the girls very excited at seeing their teacher Mrs H and their friends again. Sadly Lucas has moved to Australia over half term but we get to see lots of photos of him on Facebook so the girls can see him happy in his new environment.

back to school

Tuesday – I work and work and work, I write my something borrowed post to remind myself in years to come of all the lovely things happening right now as I have a dreadful memory.

something blue

Wednesday – People are sending me wine to drink! Thank you Gallo. This looks very interesting a red to chill, I’m looking forward to trying it after the climb.

Gallo summer red

Thank you @TescoWines and thank you to @KnackeredMutha too, I’ve been waxing lyrical about her recently published book this week which is a gem, please take a look and if you like wine then it’s for you. Get someone to get it for you for Mother’s Day ;) I also take part in a wine Twitter party – lots of fun.

Knackered Mother's Wine Club

Thursday – Getting seriously busy, suitcase half packed as I find things around the house that I’ll need with me and don’t want to forget for Climbing Snowdon with #TeamHonk. I have to prepare EVERYTHING for the girls whilst I am away, that includes a party so present and clothes, swimming bag and homework!

Friday – that’s now as I’m preparing this in advance. I took a sweet photo as Julia Boggio suggested, of me and the girls. She’s right when she says get IN the photos with your kids because when they look back they want to see you too. We must stop worrying about weight, wrinkles and grey hairs and get in the photos as our kids love us however we are.

red nose for teamhonk

Right, I really have to go now, THANK you to everyone who has sponsored me and #TeamHonk. We’re going to do you proud, I’m taking my camcorder and camera with me and a Bride to Be sash so you’ll spot me in the crowd should you look on the webcam and thank you The Boy and Me for linking me up whilst I drag myself up and down Snowdon x

Love you all and thank you so much xxx

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

The 2nd March had been marked off on the calendar for quite a while, Mari’s Hen Party. With the school mums, the twin mums a few long standing friends and my sister in law to be we were going to hit the giddy heights of our local town, eat Italian and crawl the pubs to celebrate the last Saturday night before I got married as a hen.

Then #TeamHonk announced they would be climbing Snowdon that very day to raise money for Comic Relief, invitations to the blogging community went out to join them and I knew deep in my bones there was nothing I’d like more to do than spend my Saturday, most likely in the rain, walking up Snowdon with a great bunch of inspiring, intelligent and funny people.

It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, actually my dream is to one day climb Machu Picchu but Snowdon will do perfectly for now. I’m not sure how many of us there are, possibly between 10 – 16 coming from all over the UK the common denominator is we all blog. Some of my fellow trekkers I have met on many occasions like Penny Alexander, others I am to meet for the first time.

I’d like to say an enormous and very special THANK YOU to all my mums who accepted my cancellation with grace and didn’t make me feel bad about it. We will get out soon enough I promise xxx

The CLIMB

The climb is on Saturday 2nd March. We will be meeting at 8.30 for a 9am start – meeting place and route to be confirmed.

KIT:

A waterproof coat (needed)
Waterproof trousers (recommended)
Warm clothes – fleecy jumper / trousers ( not jeans – they are crap if they get wet!)/ tshirt / warm socks and spares
Sturdy footwear / walking boots
Rucksack
Water bottle/thermos / lots of high energy snacks
Gloves / hat / scarf and spares
Penny and I will be bringing a map, compass, torch, whistle and first aid kit each but it you want to bring your own too that’s cool.

So I have a few bits to get like the waterproof trousers and coat, a decent rucksack would be a good investment and I might get a fleece too to go over my ski thermal underwear. Dressing in layers is the way forward I am told.

I’ll be leaving home on Friday afternoon to make my way towards Stoke on Trent by train where Penny will pick me and Danielle up and we’ll drive the rest of the way there and stay in the Youth Hostel at the bottom of the mountain.

That leaves me just one question to ask you –

Can you sponsor me please?

Any donation, even just £1, would help because if every reader were to leave £1 that would be a hell of a lot of pounds all going to Comic Relief and continuing the #goodwork they’ve been doing for the past 25 years.

Penny is one of my Panasonic Mums and here she is modelling one of their fridges, doesn’t she look cool? (Did you see what I did there?)

Penny Alexander checks out the Panasonic fridge

and here she is in Ghana assessing the days work at the Bakery

Penny Alexander about to break bread

That Tuesday when they were out in Ghana, I had an idea of the programs they would be featured on and here is me watching the show in the UK

#Teamhonk Comic relief

But more importantly here’s one of Penny’s shots of Jonathan Ross tirelessly on the phone, as was Davina, all day long reporting back to us in the UK the work and efforts being made in Ghana
jonathan ross on phone

Please be assured that any donation you make to my Red Nose Page will automatically be added to the #TeamHonk pot and we’d like to smash the target of £1000

Please share and spread the word xxx

 

Three fabulous bloggers, Mummy Barrow, Mammasaurus and Alexander Residence set off for Ghana on a mission to spread the word about Red Nose Day and the excellent work that Comic Relief has achieved over the past 25 years. Yes! It’s the special 25th anniversary and whilst they were visiting the projects, back in the UK everyone who is anyone took part in a massive #TeamHonk Mission.

We tweeted, Facebooked, Instagrammed watched the TV reportage and spread the news far and wide. I also took part in a fun BritMums Twitter party too reliving our favourite Red Nose Day memories … there was a lot of talk about snogging!

Today my #TeamHonk postcard has arrived and you’re going to go ‘Awwwwww, isn’t that baby cute?’ and what a beautiful mummy too.

Vaccine project Ghana #teamhonk

This is the vaccine project that receives funding from GAVI to provide a vaccination against diarrohea. I watched Jonathon Ross report from the Mother and Child centre yesterday morning on This Morning, he explained to the nation the info I found on GAVI website below

Diarrhoea is one of the leading child killers in the world – an estimated 751,000 children die from diarrhoeal diseases each year, accounting for 12% of under five deaths in GAVI-eligible countries. Rotavirus is the leading cause of severe childhood diarrhoea in both developed and developing countries and results in more than 450,000 deaths each year.

Vaccination against rotavirus will make a significant impact on global efforts to achieve Millennium Development Goal 4 (MDG 4) – reduce child deaths by two-thirds by 2015.

 
This is a digital postcard sent from TeamHonk (www.mammasaurus.co.uk; www.aresidence.co.uk; www.mummybarrow.com) during their travels with Comic Relief in Ghana celebrating #goodwork. 

For the past 25 years the money raised through Red Nose Day has been changing the lives of the poorest and most disadvantaged people in the UK and Africa. Let’s Keep Up the Good Work. Find out how at rednoseday.com

For other digital postcards please do check out the linky on www.teamhonk.org

#TeamHonk - Marianne

A BIG thank you to Jayne at Mums The Word for creating my #TeamHonk photo for me xxx

I’m also entering this post to Tara’s The Gallery as she’s on the lookout for Red Noses today

the gallery photography sticky fingers