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Me and Mine: A Family Portrait Project 2015- March.

on Tuesday, 31 March 2015.

We have had a couple of lovely opportunties this month to take our family photos.  Firstly we went to The Grove for the night to celebrate my birthday and then secondly the weekend just gone we went to Bristol.  Both would have been perfect occasions, except when we were at The Grove I forgot my tripod and when we went to Bristol it literally rained non stop all weekend.  Therefore some how it got to yesterday and I realised that we hadn't taken a photo. 

Therefore this month really is a rush job.  We snapped these photos in the girls new bedroom just before they were going to go to sleep.  We are all in our PJ's, having just got home from Bristol and put them on so we could be snuggly and cosy.  To be fair I do like these photos, I have no makeup on and greasy hair, but we all look happy and the girls loved cuddling up and taking these.  And actually a rush job is perfect for this month, as really it's been the theme of March for us.  The month has whizzed by as usual and we have just been so incredibly busy.

We have spent the majority of the month redecorating the girls bedroom and office space, so have been living amongst havoc and mess, while the rest of the month has been spent plotting and planning.  On Friday Mr E had his last day at work so from today onwards we are both going to be working together from home.  It's exciting, nerve wracking and slightly daunting, but we are looking forward to this new challenge.   Work is just ridiculously busy- I have taken on a couple of new roles, of which I am thrilled and pleased, but it's going to take a bit of time to get on top of things.

As such as I write this I am typing furiously ten to the dozen to get it written.  We have fish and chips cooking in the oven, not particularly healthy but needs must when you are in a hurry.  Then after dinner it will be non stop work until bedtime, before it all continues again tomorrow.  Anyone who works from home, or indeed writes a blog will sympathise with me- life is hectic and fast paced, but we do it because we love it, and of course because it enables me to be at home with my babies most of the time.  

So there we have it.  April is upon us.  The first half of the month hopefully will be about settling into the new routine, while the latter end of the month brings a couple of trips away.  Whatever happens, I am sure it will be hectic, fun, sometimes stressful and full of memories and adventures as usual.

meandminemar15a

meandminemar15b

meandminemar15c

meandminemar15d

This month I am sending you over to have a look at my lovely friend Lucy's blog - she has also written about life being hectic recently- there must be something in the blogging water, or more the fact that it's the arrival of Spring! :) 

 

 

{The Ordinary Moments 15} #13 'The Best People In The World.'

on Sunday, 29 March 2015.

Saying someone is the best person in the world is a pretty bold statement.  But I am pretty sure that my Grandparents are up there with the best.  I've written about both sets of my Grandparents a few times on my blog, but my Mum's parents really are truly special.  

We are very lucky that they only live about half an hour away from us, so we try and pop up there every other week for some dinner or for Sunday lunch.  They were farmers before they retired and they live on a big old farm which is so much fun in the Summer time- I have such fond memories of racing around the farm on quad bikes with my Uncle, or climbing to the top of the piles of wheat that had been harvested.  I used to love going there to play and that's why it is so special for me to see my girls so excited to do the same, they love going to Great Grandma and Grandpas house, especially as they know that they get lots of different ice cream for pudding!

They are so proud of me for whatever I do, just as Grandparent's should be.  They love to sit and listen to our tales of what we have been up to, especially my Grandpa who constantly asks if we have 'any exciting news to tell him'.  They love to hear about my blog, with my Grandpa even buying an iPad especially for when he went on holiday so he could show people it when he was reading it by the pool!  The thought of him showing some fellow holiday maker my blog and talking about his Granddaughter makes me cringe a little (or a lot), but his heart is in the right place and he finds the internet incredibly baffling and exciting.  (If you are reading this hi Grandpa- we love you!)

I definitely get my travel bug from them, they travel the world on a regular basis, with them constantly jetting off to India, or Malaysia, or Australia for a few weeks at a time throughout my whole childhood.  In fact I remember the best story of my Grandma making an Indian national newspaper for nearly falling off an elephant- there were photos of her looking panicked all over the paper and she has a couple of copies as a keep sake!  They don't show any sign of slowing down yet- even in their 80's they just recently went to Thailand for almost a month and next week they are off to Italy.

They make me a 'red cross parcel' each time we see them which they have done since I left home for university- it's always been full of things like toilet roll, washing up liquid, biscuits and ketchup, but since Mads was born nappies and wipes are always in it too- in fact I can honestly say that my Grandma has funded 80% of our nappies since the girls were born- that's quite crazy really, and of course has saved us a fortune.  They have been there to buy their first shoes, just as they did with me, and every couple of months my Grandma takes us all out shopping and treats us.

They really are the most wonderful people and I feel lucky every day that my children get the chance to know them- I will treasure these memories that we are making forever.  They really are the most ordinary of moments, I have seen them every few weeks since I was a baby, bar when I was at university or when they or I were travelling, but even the most ordinary of moments are worth treasuring, especially as the years pass by so quickly.  

grandma grandpa march 15

A Colourful Shared Bedroom For Our Girls...

on Tuesday, 24 March 2015.

For the last couple of weeks we have been embarking on a couple of interior projects, which quite frankly are my favourite kind of project.  This is due to the fact that we really needed an office space, as from next Monday my husband will be joining me in working from home.  Being in a three bedroom house, that meant that we decided to put our girls in a joint bedroom.  We decided on the largest of their two bedrooms, that used to be our guest room and then for the last few years has been both Mads and LL's nursery.  It hadnt been decorated in a few years, when LL was born we just gave it some finishing touches, so it was well in need of a spot of painting.

 I have had my reservations and nerves about them sharing, but we so far are two nights in and both have been brilliant- the bunk bed has been a raging success and so far LL has been fantastic in her 'big girl bed', we have had some giggling in the evening and morning, but everyone has stayed where they should be!

But anyway back to their room.  I deliberated for a while on what theme to do for them- I love pastels and when looking for inspiration on pinterest, it seemed that monochrome or pastel seemed to be everywhere when it came to little people rooms, but Mads just isn't into pink or 'girly' colours.  Therefore I decided on a primary colour/rainbow room with a few retro touches.  I am a massively colourful person, our whole house is awash in colour, as are our clothes, so I decided it would be perfect for our little ladies.

We ended up spending a lot more than we planned too on their room, (sorry Mr E) because as usual I kept finding other things that looked nice, and these little trinkets and things just add up.  I am thrilled with their new space and best of all they are too- with Mads calling it 'the best room ever'.  High praise indeed.

I will try and link to as many products as possible in case anyone is after any inspiration, but here is their new happy, colourful bedroom in many, many photos...

 

Rainbow bedroom 1

As soon as I saw these Farg & Form cloud duvets on instagram many months ago, I knew that some day I would have to have them- and in fact I planned most of their room around the duvets!  We got ours from Little Baby Company and although they are quite pricey, I absolutely love them and the bright colours.  They are a Swedish brand so one thing I would say is that we struggled to find a duvet and pillow to fit the dimensions- in the end we found one almost the size in Ikea but it isn't perfect, it's fine when they are all tucked in though.  The fab letter cushion is from Next and was a bargain, as was this funky geometric cushion from Tesco. (I can't find the link for that one!)

Rainbow bedroom 4

For LL's bed we went for the Farg & Form duvet in red and this gorgeous Hello Sunshine cushion from Tesco.  

Rainbow bedroom 24

I found these little house shelves in Next and thought they would be perfect for trinkets above Mads bed.  

Rainbow bedroom 15

How cute is this little troll?  So retro. ;) It was mine when I was little and the funny little guy next to him is a nightlight from Ikea- it glows all different colours and I put him there in case Mads wakes in the middle of the night.

Rainbow bedroom 16

We have had these Ingela P Arrhenius owl nesting dolls a few years, they were in Mads old room.

Rainbow bedroom 17

The little knitted owl was also in Mads old room, made by our dear family friend's Mum, and the little Cookie Monster was a memento from our recent holiday to the Caribbean.

Rainbow bedroom 12

The rainbow and cloud garland is just so gorgeous, and was handmade by a lovely lady called Coral who I found on instagram who runs the etsy shop Velveteen Babies- I love instagram for finding creative and unique products from independent businesses.  

Rainbow bedroom 22

Rainbow bedroom 18

Our faithful friend Mr Dino watches from his spot on top of Mads wardrobe.

Rainbow bedroom 25

We are thrilled with the girls bunk bed from Wayfair- I must have spent hours researching and looking into them, but we couldn't have got a more perfect choice.  At first we decided on single beds, then a bunk bed but it was huge and took up most of the room.  In the end we decided on the Rustic Retreat America Short Bunk bed, which is slightly bigger than a toddler bed but smaller than a single.  It is brilliant and means that they have a fair few years in it, (especially as they both curl up so much) but it also gives them lots of space in the room as well.  I was really nervous about it, but Mads loves it and can get up and down safely using the ladder.  There is also a large guard rail on the top which means I have absolutely no worries that she will fall out- in fact it has made going to bed really exciting and fun for her, she can't wait to go to sleep.  Bonus!  

Rainbow bedroom 26

I love her little Etch a Sketch, she has been getting up earlier in the mornings and because we don't want her to shout and wake up LL, the Etch a Sketch is there so she plays with it for a bit before shouting us, plus it keeps in with the retro feel of the room.  So far so good and it's been a massive hit- it's lovely seeing her play with toys I enjoyed as a child.

Rainbow bedroom 14

Their whole room was based around this image- it's one of my favourites and so I had it blown up large as a center piece for their picture wall.

Rainbow bedroom 20

It's hard to see their picture wall in these photos because the light from the window hits the glass frames.  But I had great fun choosing prints for it.

Rainbow bedroom 32

The prints are a combination of photos, prints I have designed myself and got printed, and prints I have bought, but they all have lots of colour in common.  Our frames are the trusty ones we use for all our photo walls- the Ikea Ribba frames, which are as cheap as chips and do the job nicely, although if you look really closely sometimes they aren't all the best quality.

Rainbow bedroom 21

 Rainbow bedroom 31

I am so pleased with how their wall turned out bar the dusting.  ;)

Rainbow bedroom 3

In keeping with the colourful, retro theme, we bought some of their toys from downstairs upstairs to live.  One thing that I am thrilled about is that there is so much more space for them to play now the room is arranged the way it is.

Rainbow bedroom 34

I love these colourful little hooks, again this is from Little Baby Company and was really good value. 

Rainbow bedroom 19

The lampshade was in Mads old room from before, but again it is Farg & Form.  The curtains obviously are also the same brand (cloud obsession me thinks) but we just bought material and got them specially made with black out lining.  All the furniture, bar their bed, is from Ikea and is their Stuva range- it's fantastic, good value and quality, and comes in loads of different combos.  We were really worried we weren't going to be able to fit two wardrobes in but we managed to get two long skinny ones which do the job perfectly.

Rainbow bedroom 35

The bookshelf was again from Ikea and was I think about £12 which is just crazy.  I put a load of their little trinkets on the top and the gorgeous Shakespeare quote print 'Though she be but Little she is Fierce' is from a very talented old friend of mine Ben who owns Old English Prints- I absolutely love it as it is one of my favourite sayings.

Rainbow bedroom 11

Their Toy Story characters show no signs of being forgotten about so we have them as pride of place in these cute little storage boxes I found at Next- they have one side which is chalkboard which is a nice touch.  Unfortunately somewhere in the decorating period, Woody found himself lost, we have a horrible feeling we threw him in the skip with some other rubbish by mistake.  RIP Woody.

Rainbow bedroom 36

'Grandma in the computer' (Mr E's Mum!) made this owl for Mads old room.

Rainbow bedroom 9

I found this little cloud plushie randomly by searching on google from a company called Sew Sew, although small, he makes a perfect little windowsill companion.

Rainbow bedroom 8

Ingela P Arrhenius again- this time from Little Baby Company.  They live perfectly in this little house shelf from H and M Home.

Rainbow bedroom 29

My favourite part of their room is their bookcase shelves, just because it is full of colour.  I had seen this Ribba Shelves (from Ikea) hack on loads of sites, so finally got round to doing our own.  The girls love it and it really brightens up the room.  I think the shelves were around £8 each so they are such a cheap way of making a room instantly more colourful.

Rainbow bedroom 33

Rainbow bedroom 30

I absolutely love these 'Sisters' letters- they are individual wooden letters but rather than spell their names I thought it would be nicer to spell out this.  They are colourful and look lovely sat on their chest of drawers.  The apple is from Dunelm, it's meant to be a door stop but looks great next to them.

Rainbow bedroom 5

I got this little coat stand thing from Ikea, I just thought it went perfectly with their room and although Mr E rolled his eyes when I put it in the trolley, I just couldn't walk past a colourful coat stand and not buy it. ;)

Rainbow bedroom 6

Rainbow bedroom 13

Rainbow bedroom 23

Rainbow bedroom 28

And there you have it.  A colourful, happy room for my girls.  I hope that sharing a room will bring them even closer together and that it is the start of a real adventure for them both.  I am so pleased with the way the room has turned out and it makes me happy every time I walk in there- it's just so bright and cheerful.  At the moment we have their suitcases under the bed but when I get a minute I am going to sort it out and put some toys under there, so they can really enjoy and play in there more.  

 

If you want to see the before photos of the room click here.

You can check out my other interior posts here

{The Ordinary Moments 15} #12 'Bugs and Hugs'

on Sunday, 22 March 2015.

I have written a few times before about how when my children are poorly, I actually find those times some of the most emotional and rawest when it comes to this motherhood journey.  Of course I don't like them being poorly, no one wants their child to be under the weather, but those times when they need their Mummy the most, are the times that I know I will treasure when they are all grown up.

There's something about them- I know I will look back and remember that slightly sick, sweet smell of Calpol, the feeling of how hot their little foreheads were when you touched them, and how when I wrapped my arms around them and snuggled into them tight, it felt like I was holding on to a hot water bottle.  On Monday morning LL had spent the majority of the night before in our bed.  I lay next to her for ages while the sun came up and her and Mr E were still in a restless sleep, and I just stared at her.  I made sure I took in every inch of her little button nose, all crusty and sore from her cold, and I marvelled at how long her eyelashes were.  I snuggled in close to her and took advantage of the fact she was asleep, and I put my head near hers and smelt her hair, it always smells of honey.

It's rare we stay in all day.  I am one of those people who likes to be busy, I like to get us out and about even if it's just to pop into town or to the garden centre for a cake.  We rarely have days in the house anymore, especially now they are older and we all get a little bit of cabin fever if we don't go out.  PJ days are rare nowadays too, and there's silly things, but since I started blogging I don't remember the last time I had morning TV on that wasn't kids television.  If I am at home there is normally the hum drum of children's programmes in the background or it's off because we are playing a game of some sorts.  

LL has been under the weather pretty much all week- I am lucky that neither of my children are particularly sickly, (touch wood) in fact I can count on one hand the amount of times they have actually been sick since they were past that 'baby sick' stage.  A lot of children permanently have colds or coughs, but again Mads and LL generally aren't really prone to them.  But this week LL has been really out of sorts with a cold, cough and really high fever.  Sunday night was dreadful, she didn't want to sleep in her cot, but she is also one of these little people who just can't settle in our bed, unlike her big sister, so we had a night where the three of us tossed and turned all night long. 

Tuesday was supposed to be a nursery day but she really wasn't up for going.  As it happens I got up and went for a run in the morning with a good friend of mine and as her son goes to the same nursery as Mads and LL, she said she would take her so I didn't have to take LL out the house.  This was a rare treat so LL and I stayed in our comfy clothes and snuggled on the sofa all morning.  Our nursery are pretty good and they said she could switch her hours and go in on Friday instead when she was better, so I didn't have to worry too much about working around her.  Instead I did a few bits and bobs I needed to do and then snuggled on the sofa with her for hours.

I never normally do this.  If we are at home, I am normally tidying or we are playing games, or I am busy doing other things if they are having a bit of quiet TV time, so it's rare we sit for a long block of time anymore and just cuddle together.  It was lovely and she even had a little snooze on the sofa which never happens anymore.  It was just a really lovely morning with her.  And this is what I mean.  These are the moments I will remember.  I remember them with Mads.  These are the moments I don't want to forget.  The way we snuggled together and she buried her little face into my arm.  The way she looked up at me every so often and I could see in her little eyes that she was enjoying this one on one time just as much as I was.  

These ordinary moments.  These non descript times.  These are the ones that will hit me one day and give me a pang of nostalgia, the ones that will come flooding back in years to come and make me feel so bittersweet that my girls are older and don't need me like that anymore.  

These are the ones that truly make me feel like a Mummy.

A Mummy who should from time to time stop and pause and relish these moments a little more than she currently does.

 

Some iPhone photos of our week of bugs...

poorly LL march 15 a

poorly LL march 15 b

poorly LL march 15 c

She fell asleep clutching her Peppa toys that go everwhere with her.

poorly LL march 15 d

 

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