IKEA shoe storage

When I received an email from IKEA asking me if I needed any help with storage solutions and could I send some photos? I nearly fell off my chair laughing, they wouldn’t know what’s hit them with my photos – could IKEA have a storage solution for my family’s mess?

cupboard under the stairs


They did have a couple of solutions and IKEA designer Marie Tenglund drew up plans to help me sort out the girl’s craft/homework/play area which will also be my office – post to follow on that one.

She also sent me a shoe cupboard to house the pile of shoes after seeing the state of my cupboard under the stairs. Please tell me mine isn’t the only cupboard that ends up looking like this needing a complete pull out and re-tidy on a regular basis.

The flat pack boxes arrived, 2 for this model and I set too one afternoon to assemble it and start making lifestyle changes to my messy cupboard.

It was really simple to make, I did it on my own with the use of my trusty electric screwdriver and before I knew it the problem had been solved.

flatpack DIY IKEA

Top drawer stores dad’s shoes, middle drawer for my stuff and bottom drawer for the the twins. Each shelf has two compartments so the twins have one each.

So now my porch is looking like this and is coping very well with the added storage solution for shoes and the cupboard under the stairs is a shoe free zone which makes for a lot more space. I can walk in now!

IKEA shoe storage

Disclosure: I must thank IKEA Lakeland for the shoe storage cabinet sent to me for the purpose of this post. A second post is to follow concentrating on a craft, homework area and office for me. It’s a bigger project which requires decorating too.

Mad, mad times on the run up to the summer holidays and I seem to have missed out on recording the best bits so now we’re on holiday it seems the perfect moment to look back on it all before we lose track and forget.

Sports Day

Once again not competing against each other but competing against personal bests. The kids loved it and the sun shone all morning making it a hot morning for all but mustn’t complain.

sports day warm up

Amazon – Christmas in July

I went to the Amazon Christmas in July show and these products are the one that caught my eye. The Anna and Else beauty cases, I know they’ll go down a treat with my girls this year. RRP £25.00

frozen beauty cases Amazon


This old brick phone, only it’s not old but brand new, made me smile. There were plenty of other gift possibilities including a fabulous range of jewellery, beauty and fashion too.

The Brick phone

Northfleet Carnival

This year we entered the Northfleet Carnival with the Tracy Peglar School of Dance which the girls have been enjoying since Easter. The school’s theme was ‘Under the Sea’ and we dressed the twins as jellyfish. They LOVED the experience and we’ll definitely be repeating it next year PLUS – our float won! Yay.

Northfleet carnival

Building – IKEA and LEGO

IKEA spoke to us about Christmas time asking if we were in need of any storage solutions, I sent a photo and cried help and they did. They sent through the Ställ shoe cupboard and I couldn’t believe how easy it was to put together. I did it all on my own with the help of my Bosch IXO cordless screwdriver.

The LEGO is the girls Cinderella Fairy Castle which we put together and they love it. I love it. It’s a fantastic idea for princess crazy girls like my two, fingers crossed LEGO are working on a Frozen one right now ;)

building IKEA and LEGO

Certainly Wood

Sent us a box of their kindling wood and some of their Flamers natural firelighters. The husband loves a bit of fire so we tried it out at the weekend whist we were camping down at Manston and we were both very impressed. Certainly Wood also very kindly sent the ingredients to make smore’s and I can’t believe my girls don’t like marshmallow! I shall try them again this weekend at Camp Bestival.

The firelighters were so simple to use and we had a great fire going in no time. Certainly Wood currently have a huge sale on if you wanted to take a look

Certainly wood natural Firelighters

In case you’re not sure here’s a really handy video that Certainly wood have made ‘ How to light a fire’

Scooby Doo – ice creams

Our first day of the summer holidays was spent down in Bognor Regis, we drove down in the BMWi3 and I was so impressed with how the car handled the longer journey. The day at Butlins was delightful, there was lunch, colouring in and dressing up as Scooby plus as many ice creams as we could eat! They were utterly delicious so do look out for them this summer at Toys r Us and independent retailers.

scooby doo ice cream

Tena Lights

 I’m guessing you associate Tena with incontinence but Tena have come a long way and are now offering Tena Lights. They sent me a fab parcel ‘Get Ready for Summer’ to try out and I can say the Tena lights are comfortable and nobody knows it’s there ;)


Tena Lights set for summer


5:2 – The Fast Diet

I’ve been at my highest weight since having the twins from January this year and although I am trying to cut back here and there nothing seems to do the trick to shed the extra I so badly want to lose.

Then I heard of the 5:2 Fast diet and am giving it a go.

This is no review, purely for my own health benefit but I particularly liked the overall health benefits associated with fasting for two days out of 7. There are some amazing statistics and the research is extensive and thorough. If you’re interested, here’s the book I read The Fast Diet and today is my first ever 500 calorie day. It’s not been too bad so far but I’m guessing I have plenty to live off  for the moment ;)

 I’ll let you know how I get on and if you’re looking for some 500 calorie ideas take a look at Stephanie’s I’m counting UFOz blog

messy officeBack in October when I realised I was spending best part of my day sat at the computer and it was in fact becoming a job – a paid job at that. I decided it was time to carve out for myself a little space to keep all my work bits in one place.

I had an old table in the garage which I cleaned up – it was far too big but it didn’t cost anything so the mister couldn’t argue with that and I rearranged the Billy bookcase, old faithful from Ikea to suit my needs. Job done!

I was sitting by a window so could use real daylight too!

Everything was ticking along nicely until one day in January Billy bookcase collapsed. I was in trouble. I was up to my ears in books and toys as it doubles up as the area I keep the girls toys in too.

I went online and went straight for the Expedit bookcase from the Ikea range which I’d seen and lusted over for a long, long time. Of course the timing of Billy dying on me like that was totally inappropriate, doesn’t he know I’m getting married in March? This is hardly the time for me to be forking out big monies for new bookcases but I drooled and drooled and thought, blow it!

I ordered it there and then online. I went for the largest model (in for a penny in for a pound) and I got it delivered as the mister had said he didn’t want to spend his weekend in Ikea (his idea of HELL) and I couldn’t lift it on my own. Job done I waited patiently and one Friday two geezers knocked on my door.

‘Got yer delivery luv.’

In came four packages and before long I had the pieces out and was putting it all together.

I was massively surprised at how easy it was to assemble. I did it on my own and it took a couple of hours tops but then I hit my first real problem..lifting it upright.


Paul was out on the razzle that night and the dining table was covered in toys that needed a new home so I knocked on my neighbour’s door and begged.

Roger popped round and helped me lift the Expedit onto it’s base after which it slided so easily against the wall it was a dream.

Expedit bookcase and desk - Ikea

In my enthusiasm on buying the Expedit bookcase I’d been tempted with the desk too which was dead easy to put together and holds the bookcase upright saving any holes in the wall to stop it falling over and this is now my office – what do you think?

Tips on assembling the Expedit bookcase

  1. Measure the area you are building in and make sure it’s big enough for the bookcase plus area to move around it.
  2. Place two strings or strong strips or a piece of cardboard under the end where you start working as once completed it will be very difficult, due to the weight, to slide your fingers under to get it upright. IMPORTANT