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A Magical Adventure...

on Wednesday, 11 June 2014.

The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning after opening my eyes is check my phone, more specifically my social media.  I have a quick glance at instagram, or twitter, or facebook, and then I may say good morning to my husband.  How bad is that?  I am slightly over dramatising the scenario (only just!) but the reality is I do spend a fair portion of my time absentmindedly flicking through social media for no particular reason.

I adore having my blog, I love that facebook helps me keep in touch with old friends or that I can gain inspiration through sites like instagram, and I love that my online life has brought me so many opportunities and friendships, but I can't remember my life before my blog.  Now any moment that I am not looking after the girls, seeing friends or working is taken up with the online world.  Nap times are spent writing blog posts or doing my usual pointless flicking through various apps.  What did I use to do with my time?  My house would be a lot cleaner that's for sure.  

But sometimes you just need to switch off and that's exactly what we did this weekend.  We had a family weekend away to the MOST MAGICAL PLACE ever.  It deserves capital letters as it really was that amazing.  A remote treehouse in the middle of nowhere in Wales.  No electricity, no phone signal, not even an indoor shower or toilet.  Just my little family and going back to basics.  It was absolutely perfect.

My photos or video will not do this treehouse justice but just imagine living high up in the trees and that is exactly what it was.  There was no one around for miles, just us and A LOT of sheep.  It was beautiful, peaceful yet oh so stylish.  Although the weather wasn't great (The sun did come out periodically!) we went on lots of walks, ate lots of sweet treats, snuggled, read books by candlelight and played games.  It was just what we all needed.  

The girls were so good considering we were all sleeping in the same room, although Mads didn't go to bed until near enough 10pm on the first night. (when it is windy the trees REALLY creak!)  We had a simple, lovely few days, topped off by visiting my grandparents on the way home.  I am so thankful for my little family and the opportunities that we get to experience and I will treasure the memories of the past weekend.  

I also proved that I am not necessarily a country girl at heart, firstly by putting my lovely PJ bottoms on a candle and setting them on fire and secondly by freaking out about needing a wee at 2 am (the toilet was outside) and waking Mr E up to come with me to hold my hand!

 I didn't charge my camera and it went on to low battery while we were there, so because I wanted to save it for seeing my grandparents on the way home, I thought I hadn't taken that many photos.  Turns out you can take the blogger away from social media but you can't taken the blogger away from her camera!  I couldn't go completely cold turkey- I may have self combust or something. Oops... Here is our weekend in photos and a little video...

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The most beautiful place ever.

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Girls in bed.  Candles. Wine. Sat on a treehouse balcony with an amazing view. Check.

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Posing on the spiral staircase.  Not an easy feat while holding two wriggly children.

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You had to access the treehouse by a number of bridges which Mads thought was the best thing ever.

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The 'wibbly wobbly' bridge.

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We took a trip to the local seaside.

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Writing your name's in a heart on the sand.  Standard practice.

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We stopped off at a gorgeous little sweetie shop for an ice cream.  Doing the normal tourist thing and getting the lady to take a photo of us all.

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Lots of snuggles were had.

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The treehouse had no electricity and the hot water was powered by the fire, so we spent a lot of time lighting candles.  And then a lot of time stopping LL crawling and picking them up.

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Mads kept cheating at Jenga but as we love her we let her do it.

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 We did lots and lots of walking.  Well as much as you could do when had forgotten to pack the baby carrier.  Oops.

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 And did lots of swinging.

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 Plus lots of Gruffalo hunting.

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Log walking was also a must.

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Late afternoon sunshine is the best kind of sunshine.

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This girl loved running about.

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We stopped off at my Grandparents on the way home as they live on the border of Wales.  I will treasure this photo of Mads and my Nana.

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The obligatory family photo we take each time. :) 

 

And here is a little video of our adventures...

 

 

 

 

Just a little note at the end to say thank you so much to Loved by Parents.  We won this trip through them and I couldn't finish this post off without thanking them for giving us the opportunity for such a wonderful weekend together.  They haven't asked us to write about it or mention them in any way, but I just wanted to say thanks.   We have already said the treehouse may be our special family place and we will definitely be returning!

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Sisters In June.

on Tuesday, 10 June 2014.

I was lying in bed this morning casually flicking through twitter as the rest of my house were still asleep, (I seem to have an annoying habit of waking up ridiculously early at the moment) when I noticed a few people tweeting about their 'Siblings' posts for this month.  I thought they may have just been super keen, until I realised that the post was meant to go up today.

Cue me panicking as I completely thought that it was tomorrow.  I had no photos ready (I was going to attempt to take some today) and no post written.  I jumped out of bed like a crazy lady and went downstairs and fired up the laptop.  While it totally doesn't matter if I don't post this month, it's not like it's an official deadline or a matter of life or death, I didn't want to let the other ladies in our little group down so I have salvaged some blurry photos from my iPhone.   Total blogger fail.

I took these photos of the girls yesterday before we went out for the morning with my Mum.  They are both wearing their matching navy dresses which is actually totally OTT for a Monday morning trip to town and the garden centre, but I find I have so many gorgeous outfits for them both that don't get worn very often.  And if one can't dress up a little to peruse the shrubs and eat a jacket potato in a cafe full of old age pensioners, when on earth can you?

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siblings june14 1

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These daughter's of mine have been so lovely this month.  With LL so nearly walking Mads has been in her element helping her by holding her hand non stop.  The look that my biggest girl gets on her face when her little sister walks to her is one that makes my heart swell a little bit- she has a look of complete pride written all over her delicate little features and she laughs and claps along with her.

Mads is definitely a 'little Mum' that's for sure.  She is so kind and caring towards LL, always thinking of her.  She makes sure she has toys to play with, will always share her food with her (even when she has cake which even I am not too keen on sharing) and constantly cuddles and kisses her.  If she cries she goes to her instantly, and with each month that goes by we get to see them interact more- their relationship and bond is growing stronger by the day, with the odd bit of feistiness thrown in too.

So there we have it.  My lovely sisters in June.  A bit of a rush job in terms of the photos and this post but as always the sentiment is there, and it's a little snippet of our everyday life I don't want to forget.  Now I can go and actually get my children up and ready for nursery- all this before 7.30am in the morning.  Unless you are a blogger you will think I am totally mad for rushing to post this but these blogs do strange things to us I swear.  

 

*****

This month I am sending you over to my lovely friend Lucy to check out the snaps of her two little people.  It was her birthday on Friday so be sure to say Happy belated Birthday while you are over there too!

{The Ordinary Moments 14} #23 'First Shoes'

on Sunday, 08 June 2014.

It's funny what makes you emotional as a parent.  As I sit writing this, the girls are in bed having their afternoon nap.  I was trying to locate one of my old posts- this one about when we bought Mads first shoes.  It was only just over two years ago but it feels like an eternity has passed.  I am sat here on the sofa and for a brief second I felt like bursting into tears.

Motherhood is so bittersweet, there's that saying 'The days are long but the years are short' and that couldn't be more apt.  Sometimes I find myself staring at the clock, willing it to be seven so I can put the girls to bed and just have a bit of time to myself.  Sometimes I realise it's only nine thirty in the morning but it feels like it should be lunchtime.  But then I look back at a photo of my now three year old in her first tiny shoes and I realise that I hardly remember the way she was then.  

Of course, I have those memories stored in my head, hundreds of photos capturing those moments I don't ever want to forget, this blog with it's stories and snippets of our family life, but it all gets a bit hazier with time.

To me, them growing up so quickly brings such a strange mixture of emotions to the surface.  I feel like we are constantly saying goodbye to things- goodbye to them sleeping in our room, goodbye to their first year, goodbye to breastfeeding.  With each new milestone- first smiles, first steps, first day's at nursery, there is a stark reminder that we won't get these moments back.  That we won't get to feel those amazing feelings again.

Occasionally I will notice things I didn't notice before, like how Mads can suddenly pronounce biscuit correctly instead of saying 'bicit', or how she no longer needs me to fast forward the bit on Shrek that makes her get scared.  Or how LL's hair now reaches the bottom of her neck, or that she no longer cries if she doesn't get her milk right.this.second after she wakes up in the morning.  Just little things, signifying that our girls are changing, growing and leaving different stages behind.

Last Tuesday we went with my Mum and Grandma to get LL's first pair of shoes.  While not walking unaided yet, she is getting more confident every day and therefore we thought it was time.  Great Grandma bought Mads first shoes so it was only right that she do the same for LL.   And watching my smallest daughter holding hands with my Mum and walking round the shoe shop, giggling and laughing because she was just so damn proud of herself, made me feel a strange mixture of happiness and sadness. 

Happiness as I get to witness her on a new journey.  Those first steps are such an incredible time, bringing with them a whole new world of discovery and adventure.  Yet a twinge of sadness because she's walking straight out of babyhood and becoming a little person, just like her big sister before her.  While I relish these milestones and new experiences, it's so bittersweet that we have to say goodbye to the previous ones. 

She's still not entirely ready to let go of our hands yet and start walking on her own.  She is so nearly there, but she just needs the reassurance that someone is there for her, steadying her in case she is about to take a tumble.

And I guess that's the thing about motherhood.  It's about letting them go, just that little bit more with each milestone we pass on this crazy journey together.

 But it's about letting them know that we will always be there to catch them if they fall.

LLs first shoes

 

 

'My Fitness Mission'- May.

on Thursday, 05 June 2014.

I know I say it every month but May really came and went in a blink of an eye.  I am still dedicated to my fitness mission and lifestyle change, but it's been hard this month due to a few different reasons.  June brings a busy time for us, with two weekends away and our holiday to Rhodes, so of course lots of meals out, plus not as much chance to exercise.

I have been suffering with my health again this month.  I rarely get poorly but I still have this ongoing sickness.  The doctors think it may be an allergy but still aren't sure and I am waiting for further tests to try and get to the bottom of what the problem is.  It affects my exercise as it can leave me with no energy for a couple of days after.  Hopefully they will be able to figure out what it is soon.

Here is how I got on in May...

 

Exercise

 

I did something crazy this month- I signed up to a marathon.  A MARATHON.  I still can't believe it.  It isn't until next April, so I have plenty of time to train but all my family think I am mad as obviously 26 miles is a very long way.  I feel a bit sick when I think about it, but I hope that I can do it.  I would love to be able to say that at least once in my life I ran a marathon.  I never thought I would say that six months ago.

Running has been a little hit and miss this month.  Due to being poorly plus being busy I haven't been able to go out on as many runs as I normally would have done.  I also haven't had time to do any longer runs so have only been doing my usual 5k route.  I have my first ever 10k race in 2 weeks so I really ought to be doing longer runs, but I just haven't felt up to it.  I also have been having a bit of trouble with my knee hurting after each run, so I have been resting it more than normal.

Negative aspects aside, I went to my first park run last week.  Park Run is amazing, it's free weekly 5k timed runs in your local park and I was nervous as I didn't know what to expect, but I loved it.  It was really motivating running with other people and everyone was really supportive and nice. I also love that you got a time and results, it was like friendly competition.  There were 204 people running the one last week and I came in 73rd and was the 13th female.  I found it really interesting comparing my time to others.  I will definitely go back, but we have a busy few weekends so I am not sure when.  

I have also still been doing the odd kettlebell workout every now and again but this has slipped a little this month- I really enjoy it as a form of exercise and I was noticing I was getting stronger so I do need to start to try and do it a little more.

 

Food

 

I have had a varied diet this month.  On the one hand I am still eating reasonably well and watching what I put into my body, trying to eat more vegetables and fruit, but on the other hand I have indulged in quite a few sweet treats.  I don't have any self control and if we open a pack of biscuits or a chocolate bar, I have to eat it all. 

I was trying to eat a healthy breakfast, as I am so bad at skipping it, usually strawberries and natural yoghurt or some fruit, but I still don't do it every day.  I also have a really bad habit of picking at the girl's dinners if they don't eat them all.  This is really not good, so I need to try and stop this!

My one weakness is still diet coke, I just cannot help but have a bottle a day, sometimes more.  I am aware of how unhealthy it is, but I just love it so much.  I also have really got worse at drinking water, I can go all day without drinking any, so I am going to make a conscious effort this month to try and start drinking more again. 

Although it sounds all negative when it comes to food in May, it hasn't been, we have still generally been eating reasonably healthy and eating smaller portions.  We have indulged in treats but I don't see this as a bad thing, as long as it's not every day like we used too.

 

Overall

 

I have been disappointed in my lack of running this month, but I have still managed at least once, if not twice a week.  Hopefully June will be different.  I need to start training as I have less than eight weeks till my first half marathon!  Eeeek!  I haven't run over eight miles yet so I really need to start looking at training plans.  

I have actually lost a little bit more weight and I do need to be careful not to lose any more.  I think this is more down to the fact that I have been poorly rather than through exercise or eating.  I am still struggling with the fact that although I have lost weight everywhere else, my tummy is still rounded.  I do realise I have had two children and it is never going to be flat like it was in my early 20's, but I do want to try and tone it a little more.  

My goals for June are to start my half marathon training plan, do at least one more park run, run three times a week and drink more water.  Hopefully these are achievable!

my fitness mission may

Check out my fitness mission in...

April

March

February

January

 

 

 

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