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photo of the weekWe have had a great week this week with two birthdays! The guitar is actually Monkey’s pressie from grandparents but he happily shares with Mouse.  I see a musical future for them both (although I think Mouse will be a drummer!). I love this photo!

Team Lloyd
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Handing over today to Mums Mall for a festive post

Top 10 2011 Christmas Albums

It’s that time of year again, when every mother finds herself running herself ragged trying to make the season magical for her children. It’s easy to reach your wits end as you play Mrs. Claus, but try soothing your frazzled nerves and stay in the spirit of the season with some Christmas music. If you’re tired of the same old stodgy Christmas Carols recorded decades ago, 2011 has produced a fantastic assortment of new Christmas albums that capture that Yuletide feeling.

1. Michael Buble – “Christmas”
Buble has made a name for himself as the modern Sinatra, and like any self-respecting crooner, has recorded his first full-length holiday album. It’s currently topping the charts for good reason. He brings a fun but reverent delivery to his renditions of old standards and new Christmas classics.

2. She & Him – “A Very She & Him Christmas”
Singer-actress Zooey Deschanel and singer-songwriter partner M. Ward, offer an acoustic indi- rock take on Christmas classics as well as a few charming originals. They manage to capture the warm feeling of the season while keeping the tone fresh.

3. tobyMac – “Christmas In Diverse City”
If you prefer a Hip-Hop Christmas, try this DCTalk alums new album. Performed with his tour band, Diverse City, it covers a wide range of styles. From Hip-hop to soul, this album will bring an urban, but wholesome, feel to your winter celebrations.

4. Carole King – “A Holiday Carole”
Veteran performer Carole King’s voice on this album has a scratchy but warm soulfulness that speaks of her 69 years of life. This jazzy collection features King, accompanied by a small combo of agile musicians. The tone of this album covers a wide range of styles and is perfect for a Christmas party or just around the house.

5. Chicago – “Chicago XXXIII: O Christmas Three”
Their first new album in eight years features a cavalcade of guest appearances by performers such as Dolly Parton, Steve Cropper, and America. However, if you despise adult-contemporary music, steer clear.

6. Various Artists – “This Warm December, A Brushfire Holiday Vol. 2”
This is another good choice for those who like an array of musical genres, or for parties. From Zach Gill’s opening drinking song, “Party Hard” which features a folksy jug-band style combo to a vampy rendition of “Frosty the Snowman”, this album is the musical equivalent of a sampler box of chocolates.

7. David Ian – “Vintage Christmas”
This jazzy collection is reminiscent of Vince Guaraldi’s Peanut’s Christmas and features swinging arrangements of Christmas classics with bluesy overtones. Those who love a warm jazzy Christmas shouldn’t pass this up.

8. Jersey Boys – “Seasons Greetings: A Jersey Boy Christmas”
The hit Broadway show about The Four Seasons featured one of the most popular soundtracks to come out of Broadway recently, and this album takes that sensibility to Christmas. This collection, recorded by the cast, brings a broadly 50’s and 60’s style to the season.

9. Paul Anka – “Songs Of December”
You know what to expect when you pick up any of Anka’s albums and this album doesn’t disappoint. The lush, fully orchestrated production will be at home in any Christmas setting.

10. Justin Bieber – “Under the Mistletoe”
For those parents who may want to add some music to the mix that will appeal to the kids, Bieber’s new album may be a good choice. The first single from the album, “Mistletoe”, already hit number one on iTunes the day after it was released. This album is a mix of new songs and fresh takes on old classics.

This post was written as a guest blog post by mum’s malls – a specialist price comparison site for maternity products, toys, kids & baby clothes featuring over 50 online stores. Find mum’s mall on Facebook and Follow mum’s mall on Twitter.

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I was in a sorting mood yesterday, I got the hubby involved and we went through our CDs, DVDs and Books and made a pile of ‘get rid of’.

The thing is, it was quite sentimental and it made me think about how your tastes change and different times that ‘that album’ or ‘that film’ reminded me of, so I thought I would share some of what I have come across…..

Alisha’s Attic (Alisha Rules the World) – This has been with me since a teenager and I still love it, the CD I listened to as a teenager drooling over my posters, stressing about a boy I liked or crying to myself because I had a bad day at School. The CD I listened to as a student lying in bed recovering from the night before, stressing over a boy I liked or crying because I missed my family and the CD I listen to now because I love it and it makes me think ‘how things change!’

Space (Three albums) – Fabulous band from my teens/early twenties (well of course I am not much older than that now – ahem).  Spiders was one of the first albums I bought for myself and Space were the first proper ‘gig’ I went to, they were something different to the pop music, I loved them!

Don McLean (American Pie) – I bought this album because of the title song, a song that saw me through uni, it can match any mood and was often played in the union. I have to say Don McLean has many fabulous songs on this album. He has a great voice!

Beautiful South (The Colour Blue) – Who didn’t love Roterdam, Perfect Ten and Don’t Marry her (it had swearing and everything!). Oh was it just me then?

 

The greatest party album under the sun – What a brilliant album, bought on a whim it saw me through many parties, student ones, family ones, mixed ones! Tiger Feet, Build me up Buttercup and so many more, full of classics!

Several 60’s albums – should I be embarrassed that I love, love, love 60’s music – well I am not, these are the albums I bought off my own back, no influence from friends, nightclubs or the student years – I just love them!

Right I am off now to do some nostalgic listening, before I send the CDs to the Charity Shop!

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Silent Sunday

Silent Sunday

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Rocking out!

So, what do I like to rock out to? Well that is question that would of had different answers through out the years (The only constant being Queen – well they ARE rock)!

During my teens I love all things girlie rock – you know the kind of stuff you love to put on really really loud and sing into your hairbrush because you are just giving into passion, because you don’t care what people think…but would be sooo embarrassed if anyone found out! So in all my teenage embarrassment I will admit I used to Rock out to Roxette!!

During my twenties I got more into rock, metal and alternative music…well it was the music that was played in the types of clubs I could go to in my trainers, I love being comfortable while I ‘rock out’ and loved rage against the machine, Limp Bizkit and Blink 182!

As I got a little older I mellowed slightly and my tastes changed with me, I began to enjoy Hoobastank, revisited my Take That Fanage and loved a bit of Alien Ant Farm!

Now however I only have time to rock out to one particular band – The ZingZillas! My 2.5 year old insists we get up and dance around for the Big Zing every time it is on, and do you know what (Confession number two) I love it!!

Of course ZingZillas isn’t my first choice and those rare occasions where I get a couple of minutes to get my hairbrush out again – give me some Coheed and Cambria, Green Day or Queen to rock out to – I would just go crazy like I didn’t care (Honest!?)

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