Congratulations on winning a Piacha Mother’s Day Tea Card to….

Marianne Daniels, Harline Paddin, Marie Powell, Ashleigh Allen and Sarah Taylor! Happy Mother’s Day to you all.

Sorry if you didn’t win, but don’t worry, I am busy reviewing and have more fab giveaways coming up soon. 

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Congratulations go to…..

…..Olivia Kirby, the lucky winner of the romantic stay for two at The Hundred House Hotel! I am envious and am sure she will have a fab time. We look forward to hearing about it!

Don’t worry if you missed out this time. Don’t forget the lovely Mother’s Day Competition with Piacha tea ends tomorrow, so make sure to enter. I also have reviews of some really fab things coming up, combined with more super giveaways, so watch this space. 

If you enjoy my blog, don’t forget to share, and to talk to me! I always love to hear your ‘un-yummy mummy’ stories.

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A side order of understanding.

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As we enter, I take a deep breath,

It is possible to survive, although it could result in death.

I remove four coats amidst loud cries and wails.

The eldest has already convinced his sis that they only serve snails.
As I remove the knives and forks, shove glassware to one side,

I feel the stares, sense in the air remarks somewhat snide.

A waitress comes to take our order, giving her sweetest grin,

“We need more time”I plead.  A twin kicks her straight in the shin.
The colouring sheets are a great idea, except for the crayons to share.

This only results in cries and shouts followed by the pulling of hair.

The waitress comes to enquire again, this time keeping her distance.

“We will all have the same” I say. It’s the path of least resistance.
Stickers, colouring, hats and books, anxious glances at the cooks,

“Where’s my pizza” scream the brood, despite my warnings not to be rude.

“My water spilled!” “I need a poo!” “She put crayons in my shoe!”

Crying, wailing , screaming four. One throws breadsticks on the floor.
Cut the pizza into squares, doing my best to avoid the stares.

Of course I’ll never get it right. Twin one has stolen twin two’s Sprite

Silence comes, pizza filling little tums.

But, of course, it doesn’t last. Pizza’s eaten very fast.
As I survey the aftermath, I hear a smothered pair of laughs.

As twin two falls off his chair, and twin one pulls her sister’s hair,

I see you look in disbelief, hear you mutter “Oh good grief,

Is this woman for real? Can’t wait to go spread this tale!”
As older bro falls on his rear I hear the ironic sneer, “Mother of the year!”

Your little darling sits pristine in her bib of pink and cream.

Feeding her proudly, while exclaiming most loudly

“Darling, thank our lucky stars that none of those is ours.”
Peony is so very good, behaving  as an infant should.

She sits nicely in her chair, pretty bows in her hair.

Even her nails are a-gleam, she really does love to be clean.

She so loves her mum and dad, and never does a thing that’s bad.
Thing is, when you judge you see, you don’t know how things soon might be.

Peony’s a delightful little baby, but soon she’ll be a little lady.

Little ladies can be nice, but sometimes they are little shites.

Toddlers shout and scream and roar and throw their pasta on the floor.
If Peony gets a little brother, she’ll pretend to be his mother,

She’ll share her sweets, serve him tea, cuddle him upon her knee.

On other days, she’ll steal his toys. Bite him, kick him,  make lots of noise.

One day you’ll be in my chair while others whisper, laugh and stare.

 

The moral of this little ditty is to urge you “don’t be shitty!”

Parenting is not a game, to make others feel ashamed.

When a parent is doing their best, give the poor wee soul a rest.

If you feel the need to stare, give a look saying “I’ve been there!”

A Bit Of Everything

The Great Monsuno Toy Robbery!

As a parent, commercial rip offs are an inevitable part of life. I bow down to any parent who’s child has got to the age of 3 and is not the proud owner of an array of Peppa Pig tat. By the age of 2, my eldest could spot a Thomas the Tank Engine branded product a mile off, despite never actually having seen Thomas on TV.

I do buy branded toys for my kids, but not whatever they want. I make judgments on various grounds:

  • Cost
  • Perceived quality
  • Likely annoyingness to me once home
  • Likely cost of batteries
  • How much the child in question seems to genuinely want it (this is not directly proportional to the volume of the crying).
  • When the particular child last got a new toy, and what their behaviour has been like. Am I looking to reward them?
  • A combination of how close it is to wine o’clock, and how low my emotional reserves are running.

I appreciate that I could buy own brand products more cheaply, and quite often I do. I also shop school fetes and charity shops. New toys are generally reserved for real rewards, or Christmas and Birthday presents.

It won’t have escaped your notice that it is half term. Today, I took 3 of my 4 out for a mooch and some lunch. Every morning this half term, Patch has made me a bowl of muesli with extra sultanas, just as I like it, as soon as he sees me in the kitchen. He has also done gardening work, worked well training the puppy, and cleaned out the chickens. I have really been immensely proud of him, and decided that I would treat him. The first thing he saw that he wanted was a Monsuno strike case. I had no idea what this was, but he seemed to be really keen. We read the packaging, which was busy with pictures, and words in lots of languages. We weren’t sure what was included. We read the packaging several times, while I tried to supervise the 3 and 2 year old. We concluded that the images and numbers seemed to indicate that he got 7 of whatever these fighting things were, and some cards.

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He then saw the Monsuno  Electronic Battle Case. At £25 (in a discount store), I wasn’t really sure. Again, we looked over the packaging. All of the pictures and the wording, indicated that this was a fighting ring for 4 of these fighters. Like most parents of more than 1 child, I had some other children with me. Kids a in a toy shop are not dis-similar to bulls in a china shop. I did my best to supervise, tidy and read, all at the same time. As Patch desperately wanted it, I said I would buy it. He wanted the strike case with the extra fighters, so said he would buy it with his pocket money.

On the way home, Patch opened his strike case. As parents of six years old everywhere know, your child will be totally delighted distraught to find that he has spent his money on….no, you won’t guess because no-one would do something this shitty to a child….it really is too good….seriously, wait for it….an empty plastic box. That’s right, this piece of plastic crap is apparently a must have carry case for the Monsuno figures that aren’t included. Strictly speaking, when I got home and examined the cardboard with my husband, in very tiny print in multiple languages, it does state ‘not included’. To me, this is on the scale of requiring people to examine the bottle of coke they buy from the supermarket, in case it is in fact a coke carrier (coke not included ) for the coke you can buy in the next aisle. Or, wine perhaps? Or even chocolates? I mean, after all, when the chocolate manufacturers have gone to all the trouble of moulding cheap plastic into chocolate shapes, you can hardly expect them to go the whole hog and actually add the chocolates can you? Obviously, you should be expected to read the small print in 7 languages to determine that the chocolates are not actually included, pay a small fortune for the box, and an even bigger fortune for the chocolate itself.

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Surely Monsuno will redeem themselves with the Electronic Battle case? I mean after all, £25 must buy you more than a plastic case with some sound effects. You are right! The game for 4 includes….1 player. Yes, you read that correctly., When your child, who has already endured the ‘pocket money for empty case’ scandal, gets home to play his new game for 4 with his 3 siblings, he will find that he cannot. For the grand price of £25, he has got a plastic platform with 4 ramps that makes some sounds, along with a single fighter. Once again, if you examine the small print, you will see it says ‘includes 1 electronic battle case, 1 Monsuno figure, 1 core & 1 card’.

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Are the manufacturers/sellers to be absolved? I mean, after all they wrote it on the box, didn’t they! Back to the analogies, I think. You buy a house for £250,000 off plan (shows rooms etc). You move in, and its just an open space with ‘rooms to be purchased separately’. The point is that the price is so high that you make a reasonable assumption, also based on the packaging pictures (or sales pictures), that you are buying something complete.

I am now committed to buying 3 more of these fighting figures at a ridiculous price on the internet, having trawled local toy shops this afternoon. To quell the infant misery, I have also had to pay £10 for The Little Mermaid on Amazon, as they don’t have a toy to play with.

Monsuno, in 6 years of parenting, this really is the lowest of the low. Please give some thought to amending either your package contents, or your packaging. After all, your target market is children!

 

 

A Bit Of Everything

Mummy’s guilty little pleasure.

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I am going to let you into a little secret. Ever so occasionally, it makes me smugly rub my hands with glee when I see someone else’s little darling behaving like a little shit in public. The tortured look, embarrassed sideways glances and whispered threats about loss of privileges bring a sly little smirk to my face. It only happens in times of extreme infant induced stress of my own, but it does happen. It’s my guilty little pleasure.

I know that I am generally a kind caring kind of mummy so I imagine that I am not alone in occasionally feeling this way. Today, it manifested in the supermarket in all it’s ugly glory.

There is the Yummy Mummy…

The yummy mummy always gets a parent and child parking space, never ends up with the trolley with wet seats because it has been in the rain, and never has to apply force to prize the squabbling kids off the self scanner before they get to the stage of biting. She will never forget her bags as she has those clever little unfolding trolley bags. She glides gracefully from aisle to aisle, the little darlings following quietly behind her, only stopping to ask questions like ‘Have you remembered the organic quinoa mother?’ and ‘Have you checked that all of the fruit in that smoothie is organic and fairtrade?’ Within a short time, shopping neatly packed, they will glide through the tills and off to the nice clean mummy wagon to go home for an afternoon snack of something like rare Brazilian purple olives with tapenade.

…And then, there is me!

I am not a yummy mummy. I never get a parent child parking space and usually end up having to carry at least one protesting infant while the others cling to my legs. Even if it hasn’t rained for a week, I still seem to end up with a trolley with wet seats. Not that it matters particularly, as the kids rarely oblige by actually sitting in them. If I have remembered my bags at all, they will be from a variety of different shops, the one constant being they will all have a hole in them somewhere.  Shopping with my rabble is at best, risky, and at worst, like pressing my own self-destruct button.

Today’s shopping trip.

Today’s shopping trip was one for the archives.

On the way in, I saw an elderly lady who was struggling. Instructing the kids to wait quietly in the entrance, I ran to get her a trolley. By the time I got back, a whole 20 seconds or so later, one twin was trying to wrench a self scanner out of the holders using his full bodyweight, much to the horror of the onlooking security guard. The other twin was lying on the floor screaming and holding her head where she had somehow hit it on a shelf, while a gaggle of concerned shoppers looked urgently for the wayward mother. Meanwhile, the four year old was re-arranging the Valentine’s day champagne display. Snatching them up, I set off to get the bare necessities as quickly as possible.

As I selected some meat, I heard some giggling and exclamations from round the end of the aisle. Realising that none of my brood were with me, I reluctantly peered round to see what they were up to. They had used the toys displayed on the end of another aisle to build a barrier across the aisle, which no-one was allowed to pass unless they knew the magic password. Apparently none of the 12 or so shoppers at the barrier had yet guessed the magic password, and the queue was building. I repeated my apologies while crawling across the floor collecting the toys to replace on the shelves.

I am just going to skim over the incidents in the bread, and fruit aisles. I mean as soon as I saw that they were taking bites out of the plums…well anyway.

Upping the pace yet further, we made it almost to the tills without further major mishap. I suspect that was where I went wrong. I took my eye off the ball, thinking I was home and dry before I was. Then, it happened.

The four year old leapt onto one side of the packed trolley, and the two year old followed suit. As though in slow motion, the trolley listed to the left before committing to falling right over on top of the two girls, knocking them to the floor and their  heads into the shelving. The contents of the trolley spewed out across the floor. I dived in to try and stop it, landing in a rugby style trolley tackle right on my front on the floor, hurting my wrist (along with any pride I may still have had left by that stage).

For a moment, the supermarket seemed to freeze. Everyone was wrenched back to life by the piercing screams of the girls. As I struggled to unpack them from under the shopping, I saw staff rallying around. Soon, I was sitting on the floor nursing two screaming kids while a first aider endeavoured to find the source of their pain, and several other staff members looked on in disbelief. Some people stopped to watch, some offered sympathetic looks, and others hurried past pretending not to see. I have to say, I was mortified. Once we had established that no-one required an ambulance, I rushed through the tills. I just wanted to get home and nurse my painful wrist, which I injured trying to catch the trolley.

My guilty moment.

As I urged the kids towards the from door, I saw a father looking much as I must have looked a few minutes before. He had one child screaming in a fit of rage and obviously refusing to budge while another looked on in a goading kind of way. He clearly had no idea how to resolve the situation, and you could see that the panic was starting to set in.

At that moment, where normally I would have given a look that said ‘don’t worry, we have all been there’ I found myself thinking a very emphatic GOOD! I now feel really bad about it of course, but I think that just in that moment, when my embarrassment had been even greater than the twin tandem trolley pooing incident, it made me feel happy that it doesn’t just happen to me. There are other un-yummy parents out there after all. It also made me feel that perhaps it would distract people from remembering my family and I quite so vividly. Does that make me a bad person?

Mothers Day giveaway with Piacha Tea Bar & Shop!

 

Click Here to Enter!

I recently got tweeting with someone on the subject of tea, which seemed a bit random at the time. When she asked me what my favourite tea was, I metaphorically shuffled my feet, felt very un-yummy and confessed that it would have to be Earl Grey. Earl Grey is in fact the only tea other than Barry’s (when in Ireland) and Sainsburys own which I had tried! Obviously I didn’t admit this, and quickly googled smart things to say about Earl Grey tea before tweeting back.

Anyway, her favourite tea was Rooibos Choc Cinnamon. I think she guessed that I might not know a lot about tea, because she diplomatically directed me to a very special place, Piacha Tea Bar and Shop. Being nosy, I had a look at their website (www.piacha.co.uk) and wondered how on earth anyone could come up with 26 flavours of tea. Then I got really distracted reading about Pia, the founder of Piacha, who had moved from law and technology to building her own vision of tea heaven to service not only London, but the whole of the UK. Yes, tea by post! 

The Teas

There really are too many for me to list, but it’s worth having a look at the website to see flavours such as Ginger Chilli, Rooibos Rhubarb Fudge, Oolong Iron Mercy (conjured up images of WWF wrestlers!) and Ginger Chilli (yes pleasey!). Piacha really does open up a whole world of tea. 

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Pia kindly offered to send me some tea to try. I chose Black and Cherry. The next day little envelope popped through my letterbox. Inside, I was delighted to find 3 gorgeous little packages of tea (Tea Cards). 

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Pia had kindly sent me Black and Cherry, Jasmine Green Tea and Rooibos Choc Cinnamon.

Obviously, I do not possess such luxuries as tea strainer, as these aren’t required for tea bags. I do have a small sieve though, so I set about using that and my teapot to brew the Black and Cherry. Then I stopped, having realised that I frankly had no idea how to make loose leaf tea! In anticipation of such occurrences, Pia has actually put a whole section on her website just telling you tea facts. This includes a ‘How to make tea’ section which contains brewing guidelines for each type of blend. 

Brewing guidelines

Type of tea Quantity Temperature Time With/ without milk
Black Recommended standard for
infusing tea based drinks:
3 g/1.5 dl water.
Varies depending on
e.g. quality, type of tea,
infusion time and
personal taste.
100 °C 3-5 min With or without
Green 70–85 °C 2-3 min Without
Oolong 80–90 °C 2-3 min Without
White 80–90 °C 3-5 min Without
Mate 80 °C 3-5 min Without
Herbal 100 °C 3-7 min Without
Rooibos 100 °C 3-5 min With or without
Hibiscus 100 °C 2-3 min Without

I started by supping my correctly brewed Black and Cherry while planting out Hyacinths taken from the children’s Great Grandmothers Garden. The activity was specially selected as gardening is one of the few activities that allows me to drink a whole cup of tea while it is still warm. The kids usually busy themselves by digging up whatever I have recently planted, and that keeps them occupied for at least 10 minutes. 

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The Black and Cherry verdict? Delicious! Hubby and I both really enjoyed this tea, and said that we would definitely have it again. 

The next day I had a friend over for a playdate. I offered her the choice between Jasmine Green Tea or Rooibos Choc Cinnamon. Obviously she thought I was having some kind of yummy mummy breakdown until I explained my twitter tea encounter. Being a little more educated than I in the tea department, she chose the Jasmine Green Tea as she likes green tea, and loves Jasmine.  The smell was absolutely divine. You really  could smell the Jasmine. The verdict? Honestly, I hated it (sorry Pia!). Anna, however, loved it and went straight to the packet to see how much was left before she stuffed the remainder indiscreetly into her nappy bag! I suppose that really highlights the beauty of Piacha. No-one is ever going to like every flavour of tea. However, instead of browsing the limited selection available on the supermarket shelf and having to buy a whole box before drinking one cup and realising you hate it, you can taste! Piacha offers taste cards (AKA gorgeous little packages of tea), so you can try a smaller portions of more teas. Genius!

On to Rooibos Choc Cinnamon. Yum diddly yum yum pretty much sums it up! Goes well with cake, biscuits, chocolate, and you will probably want more!

Tea Bar & Shop

As I was wandering around Piacha’s website, I stopped at the section about the tea bar itself. I haven’t been to the tea bar which is based on Upper Street in Islington, London. However, Pia’s own description makes it sound like a truly wonderful place…”spacious tea bar with mellow jazz and comfy armchairs. Watching the buzzing Upper Street from inside the peaceful Piacha, with Miles Davis and a cup of Ginger Chilli, is good for the soul.

I then thought I would look at the tea menu as I do go to London every 6 weeks or so as trustee of a children’s charity. I thought the clincher was the Peach Earl Grey smoothie.

That was until I saw this…

AFTERNOON TEA

Treat yourself to tea infused sandwiches, cakes and matcha ice cream. Enjoy with three Piacha teas of choice.

…and decided to invite myself for afternoon tea next time I am in London!!!

 

The Mothers Day Giveaway

Pia has very kindly agreed that it would be mean of me to tempt you all like this and not run a giveaway. In honour of Mothers everywhere, Pia is offering 5 Lucky readers a tea tastecard to be sent to a Mummy for Mothers day (I reckon this means if you are a Mummy you could ask for it to be sent to yourself!).

To enter, please click on the link above (Click here to Enter). There, you will be prompted to do the following:

  1. Like 4kidsandachicken on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/4kidsandachicken/).
  2. Like Piacha on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/piachatea/)
  3. Like and share this post to spread the love.

We know you are all super busy so the following are optional although they increase your chances of winning:

4. Follow 4kidsandachicken on Twitter (@4Kids1Chicken) and Tweet to confirm your entry.

5. Follow Piacha on Twitter (@Piachatea) and Tweet to confirm your entry.

6. Follow Piacha on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/piachatea/

Please note, your entry data will be shared with Piacha and with Slummy Single Mummy blog. It will not be passed to anyone else. By entering, you are consenting to your data being shared with these two parties.

Good luck everyone!

4 Kids, a chicken and a puppy!

Yes, you read it correctly, we have added a puppy to the mix! Meet Clodagh (rhymes with Yoda).

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Clodagh is a fox red/yellow labrador, and she is currently 9 weeks old.

Hubby spent months researching before applying for a puppy from extremely successful lineage. He then bought just about every puppy book, training book, and labrador book on the market and instructed us all to read them so we didn’t make any training mistakes. I read some with the kids. However, having 1 hubby, 4 kids, 1 cat, 4 chickens, 2 rescue dwarf Russian hamsters, and a part time job as a high court litigation lawyer, I confess that I didn’t really get beyond the first chapter or two of the ‘Happy Puppy’ book I got for Christmas!

Having raised 4 kids to the ripe old ages of 6, 4 and twins aged 2, I reckoned that a puppy was unlikely to pose too much of a challenge. When I say she came so much better trained than my kids, I am not joking. At 9 weeks old, she is house trained, wee’s on command (none of this I don’t need to go, then 5 minutes later I need to go NOW! *wees in supermarket trolley* malarky), and answers to her own name rather than pretending she didn’t hear me.

So why oh why did we get a puppy. Well, we love outdoor activities like gardening, camping, fishing sailing and shooting. I have to say that I find it ever so slightly ironic that we have been granted ownership of this pedigree pup, who had a waiting list longer than a human pregnancy, while our 4 kids are virtually ferral. However, animals teach kids responsibility, caring and loving. We believe we can offer a stable, loving and active home to this little puppy. Whether or not ambitions to field trial her will come to fruition remains to be seen (I guess I should probably read the training books).

1 Week in – how are we doing?

That depends on who you ask! As far as Clodagh and the kids are concerned, life is ace. As far as Purcy cat is concerned, the meaning of life is being reconsidered. The current status quo is roughly as follows:

  • Hubby spent weeks reviewing food to determine the best one for pup. He settled on Orijen which he ordered in advance along with special real fish bites. Today the puppy dined exclusively on gourmet pearl cat food, the cat dined exclusively on the home-made steak hache I did for the kids, the older kids ate cheese on toast, and the twins ate Orijen dog biscuits.
  • The ‘puppy must be carried up and down steps’ rule may have been amended to carry the puppy up the steps, you know, if you get there before her (unlikely).
  • The ‘no dogs on the sofa’ rule lasted a whole 3 hours.

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  • The dog pen is a kids fort, and the dog sleeps on the kids beds.
  • Having specially bought a squeaky pheasant and other appropriate toys, the kids are flying the squeaky pheasant while the puppy chews on the child friendly interactive toadstool from the unicorn set (it flashes colours and makes a magical fairy tune when she bites it).
  • Having not yet read the puppy training books. I am following the general child training programme. Clodagh took her first toddler dance class totally in her stride. She really loved the bubble session and the goodbye song.

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In summary, it has been a rocky start. We love Clodagh, and have no doubt she will feature in future blogs (or even gourmet pearl catfood adds!).

Thanks for reading. x

MOTHERS DAY GIVEAWAY – win a romantic stay for 2 at The Hundred House Hotel!

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Click here to enter!
https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Ok, so you will all have been astounded to see that I actually managed to prise myself from my snot and jam coated infants to take a well deserved night away with hubby. Where did we go? Hundred House Hotel in Shropshire.

This is a review of our stay along with an awesome giveaway. Need a luxurious night away from the kids? This is the competition for you! Read on for full details. Please note, we paid in full for our meal and stay. This is an unbiased unpaid for review, and consists entirely of my own opinions. 

Why Hundred House Hotel?

When it came to choosing a hotel for our first night away in 7 years, we wanted to go somewhere that had been worth waiting 7 years for, but which didn’t cost an arm and a leg. We went to Shropshire for a shooting day. Having checked out endless websites, my hubby presented me with a  shortlist of 4 hotels. My eyes lit upon this particular hotel, and to be honest, on the internet, none of the others compared. It was even better in real life. It just had that feel about it. You know the one I mean. It had wooden beams, wonky walls and fires and wood burners all over the place. Red quarry tiles, exposed bricks and ancient oak furniture really create the most wonderfully relaxed atmosphere. It doesn’t matter how modern your home is (or not!), this place feels like home (only a bit posher, and less messy, and it doesn’t have banana stuck to the seats, and the risk of stepping barefoot on a Lego brick is really very low…).

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The Room

This comes with a health warning. When you go in, you might faint at the total loveliness and plushness of the room (husbands, be ready to catch please). You may also find it very difficult to check out again! The features just keep on coming. The most unusual feature of our room was that it had a flower draped swing (yes, a real swing!) hanging from a wooden ceiling beam. It had a velvet seat, and you could swing on it to your hearts content (which obviously I did because with 4 kids, I never get a turn on the swings at the park!).

Once you have got over that little shock (in my case after around 10 minutes of excited swinging!), you will see a beautiful room. Ours had gorgeous dark oak furniture, four poster bed and pretty wooden blanket box (filled with blankets) There were two wingback chairs, footstools, TV, and just about everything else you could need (yes, there was real coffee and a cafetière).

The bathroom had a stunning freestanding modern version of a Victorian rolltop bath, giant shower cubicle, sink and loo. The bath is placed directly below a skylight looking up to the stars.

Basically, this bedroom is about as romantic as it gets!

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The Bar/Restaurant

I can’t really re-create the character and atmosphere here with words alone (so I am adding some pictures, although even those don’t do this place justice because I am a crap photographer, and also because it was dark when we arrived, and dark when we left!). I sat on a surprisingly comfy ancient wooden settle, next to a well tended woodburner, and in the company of a small number of other couples (and of course hubby!). It was a Monday evening in mid January. It did not matter at all that the restaurant was relatively quiet. This is a family run business, and that oozed out of every pore. The family members were buzzing around quietly and attentively, which contributed to the homely feeling.

As you may have gathered, I rather like wine. Trouble is, I am superly picky about my white wine. It has to be just right. Not too citrussy or too dry, but not too sweet either. To the absolute credit of our host, she took me through the wine list, made a recommendation. When I established it was only sold by the bottle, told me she would take it back and replace it with no charge if I didn’t like it once opened. To me, this screams great customer service and inspires loyalty. It is a rare quality to find these days. It was also really nice wine, and a super choice by our host.

We wanted to sit, read, possibly blog etc before dinner. We were asked discreetly several times if we were ready to order. There was no pressure and no awkwardness. First class service!

Breakfast!
Breakfast!

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The snug.

The Chef

Yes, he gets his own review. The head chef, Stuart Philips, has two AA rosettes along with various other awards. He trained in Michelin starred London restaurants, and in recent years, has headed up the team at Hundred House Hotel. I will be honest, the food on offer was a big part of my choosing this place. I like nice food a lot! We were not disappointed.

When hubby started asking particularly awkward questions (which deer species is the venison, how long has it been hung, etc) instead of just making it up, within minutes the chef was at our table answering all of the questions. He told us a bit more about the source of the meat, fish and fruit and vegetables he uses in the restaurant. This was a really nice treat, especially as we do our best to eat natural and local.

I had the scallops to start, then the grilled beef with Jacobs ladder (No,  I didn’t know what it was either. We googled it!). It is the tender rib meat braised in the most delicious thick gravy until it literally falls apart. It was served in a  circle of crispy bacon. The grilled beef was divine, and it came with a  selection of vegetables and lovely mash. I can’t review pudding because I ate so much starter, dinner and bread, that I couldn’t fit it in. I had dessert wine instead! Hubby was equally pleased with his meal.

 

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The Competition

I think this is one of the best hidden gems I have ever come across. I would really love people to spread the word so that others can enjoy this super place.

The prize is an overnight stay for two, at this wonderfully romantic hotel. This includes breakfast, which is just divine. It includes fruit, yoghurt, muesli and the like for healthy peeps. You can also choose from a range of hot breakfasts including kippers and a full English. If you are a piglet like me, you might even try both! You can wash this down with fruit juices and fresh tea and coffee

How to Enter

Please click on the link that says ‘click here to enter’. You will be asked to do 3 things:

  1. Like the page 4kidsandachicken https://www.facebook.com/4kidsandachicken/
  2. Share this post on Facebook.
  3. Like the Hundred House Hotel Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/HundredHouse/

I know now everyone is super busy, so I am not asking you to comment or share on Twitter to enter. Only the above are mandatory.

There are further options available including following on Twitter (@4kids1chicken and @TheHundredHouse) and sharing on Twitter as well as leaving a comment. Apparently this increases your chances of winning (not sure how – you would need to ask rafflecopter!)

The team at the Hundred House and I have worked hard to bring you this great prize. We hope you will enjoy this competition.

As this is such a valuable prize, I have included some small print below.

Small print below

The offer includes what is set out in ‘The competition’ section above. It doesn’t include any extras including, but not limited to telephone calls, travel to or from the hotel, or any additional drinks or food, or additional nights stay. These will need to be paid for directly to the Hundred House Hotel. The nights stay will be subject to availability, and this will need to be confirmed directly with the Hundred Hotel. The stay must be taken between 1 March and 1 June 2016. Any extensions will be entirely within the discretion of the Hundred House Hotel Management. This prize is not transferable, is non saleable, and has no cash value. Terms and conditions may be altered at the discretion of the competition holders.

GOOD LUCK EVERYONE, AND THANKS FOR FOLLOWING! http://www.4kidsandachicken.com AND www.hundredhouse.co.uk