Wednesday 14 October 2015

All The Leaves Are Falling Down

As regular readers (if any are left!) will have noticed, my blogging has trailed off dramatically the past couple of years and has become practically non-existent since this May.

I know why.

I’ve been embracing ‘real life’ more and not wanting to sit down in front of my laptop and blog. This makes me happy but it also makes me sad because I’ve missed capturing some amazing moments of my life on my blog such as my 40th birthday party last October (that post still remains half complete) and our whole month spent in Florida this year.

I’m at a crossroads and I don’t know what to do.

Time is precious and I want to stop it.

Right now!

MC and TC are both 6 and 3 years old now. I started this blog as a place to record my life as a stay-at-home mum and to document their early adventures so they had a place to read about it when I was older.

I feel like I’ve failed.

Although I have to admit, I have been keeping a little finger in the blogging pie, as it were, by writing some blog posts for Muddy Puddles who provide the most amazing children’s waterproofs and outdoor clothing. I love being a ‘Muddy Parent’. Not only does it mean we get sent a few items from the team, it encourages to become more outdoorsy – something which I openly admit we can fail at sometimes after a hard week. It also means that keeping myself in with blogging may encourage me to return properly.

Watch this space!

Anyway, we’ve explored more places around where we live and realised just how pretty awesome it is. The summer came and went in a flurry of outdoor adventures and then something big happened.

TC started nursery at his big sisters school this September.

With him only turning 3 in March, he seems so little in his uniform. His first day he was super excited and happy but the nerves kicked in when he got into class. Our daughter was allowed to go into his class to try and reassure him – it’s such a big deal for such small children.

Both the kids are well equipped for school with their coats from Muddy Puddles. What’s great is they have a dedicated section on their website for all your school needs. We love the ‘Originals Jacket’, which comes in 5 different colours, as it’s completely waterproof but so lightweight. Absolutely perfect for this time of year.

After a first week of a few of tears he has settled in great and is really starting to come out of himself. He chats our heads off at home and around people he knows but he can clam up in social environments. He had been going to playgroup four mornings a week up until July and not once did they hear him say one word!

I have to admit I was worried about him. He is a total mummy’s boy. The fact he didn’t speak at playgroup was a concern but I think, looking back, that we put pressure on him to speak which made the situation worse for him. We’ve since changed our tactics and ignored his lack of speech in these environments and just encouraged him more when he did speak in situations where he was anxious.

As the weather starts to turn noticeably cooler they are exploring Autumn at school and my usually quiet boy has suddenly taken to singing this little song he learnt at school…

All the leaves are falling down
Orange, yellow, red and brown

When I picked him up last week he was sporting a special “Super star” sticker and his teacher told me he’d actually sung in class. I was so happy! I finally think my little shy boy is realising he can get so much more out of things when he just lets himself go.

After school we went on a lovely walk in the Autumn sunshine and looked at the changing colours of the leaves. October really is a beautiful month to be out and about. Although it’s been unusually warm there is that freshness in the air that only the shoulder months can bring.

As we walked, we sang. I felt a lump in my throat.

All the leaves are falling down
Orange, yellow, red and brown

I feel like my little leaf is branching off on his own and I couldn’t be more proud.

I am proud to be part of the Muddy Puddles Muddy Parent team.
I am sent a small number of items but never receive any cash incentive.
All photographs, words, views and opinions are entirely my own.

Friday 14 August 2015

Looking For Swimwear? Look No Further...

I can't believe how fast the year is flying by. 

Summer is well and truly here! It's that time of year for bearing some flesh. A time to enjoy the sunshine and catch a bit of Vitamin D.

One thing us women - well, most of us - don't enjoy about summer is buying swimwear. It can be a somewhat arduous task that fills us with dread. I had such a task facing me a while back when I needed a new swimming costume for Center Parcs. I wanted a new one as the one I had was starting to look a bit faded and ropey after countless hours at swimming lessons with the children. It was only a relatively cheap one but it served its purpose. I also wanted a new one that would serve me for our holiday to Florida. One that was pretty enough to be flattering and feminine but sturdy enough to stand up to the likes of Summit Plummet at Blizzard Beach. That thing can give you a colonic irrigation if you're not careful!

Anyway, I digress, I happened to be on social media at the right time and was lucky enough to be sent a David swimsuit from Patricia Eve (with matching sarong). I was thrilled as, after researching the company, I knew it would be difficult to be disappointed.

Now let me start by saying I would love to have the confidence (and the body) to show you a photo of ME in the swimsuit but I've just taken little glimpses. The main photo, at the bottom, is not me. Just incase you may have thought it was. Ha... I wish!
Beautiful detailing

As soon as I opened the swimsuit I loved it even more than the photo I'd seen of it online. It really was beautifully made. 

I am ashamed to say I hadn't heard of David Swimwear before but once I did some research into the brand I realised what a great collection of swimwear pieces they do. David is an Italian brand and that shows by the quality and beautiful Italian design - they also provide something for every woman.

The attention to detail on the swimsuit was immediately obvious. The glittering jewelled 'D' at the top of the thigh was perfectly placed and the cut of the swimsuit across the groin is extremely flattering.

The gorgeous patterned bust area

The swimsuit is black apart from the lovely pattern across the bust. Obviously black is  flattering but who wants a swim suit that's just all black? The detail on the pattern is exquisite and really sets the whole suit off beautiful.

What is great about this particular swimsuit is that it can be worn in a variety of ways. It has a tie halter neck from the patterned bust but it also has 3 different, totally removable, straps. This means that you can create a number of different looks and when you want to wear it completely strapless the halter neck twists and ties around the back of the suit.

It's quite low cut at the back but still high enough to cover your lower back so it's not too revealing. I've been using it each week for swimming with TC and I have to admit that I feel very glam in the pool - I've even had someone in my swimming class ask where I got the swimsuit from!

So, if you're looking for any swimwear in the future you can be sure of finding something suitable from Patricia Eve - they are also stockists for the 'Miracle Suit' which is the leader in swimwear shape-wear. They really do offer a great choice of high quality swimwear.

NOT ME, obviously (photo credit)

I was sent the swimsuit to review 
but all photographs (apart from image credited above), 
words, views and opinions are entirely my own.

Sunday 31 May 2015

#MeAndMine - A Family Portrait (May 2015) The Orlando Edition!

Last month was the first time I've missed a Me and Mine in the last couple of years and you can't believe how upset I was.

To cut a very long story short, MC broke out with chicken pox exactly a week before we were due to fly out to Orlando, Florida for a months holiday! A holiday we'd been planning for over a year. Incase you don't know, until every spot has scabbed over airlines won't let you fly so it was a race against time and 2-3 bicarbonate of soda and sea salt baths a day. We also had to race TC to be vaccinated.

Thankfully all our hard work (and tears) paid off and MC was certified fit to fly at the last minute. It was so touch and go though and Matt and I lost a lot of sleep over it…so we were ready for a holiday.

As this post goes live we will have landed back in the UK. We usually spend 3 weeks in Orlando but we decided to extend it and my parents also joined us for the first week. I won't lie, there were moments when it was tough with two small kids - one recovering from illness and the other one fighting illness off - but it was a fantastic holiday again and none of us want to leave our second home.

I'll be blogging about our trip, in full, as soon as I find the time to pull everything together…and got over the jet lag. We also covered Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure this trip which was all new to us - was amazing though, especially the brand new Wizarding World of Harry Potter...and I'm not really a fan!

I haven't had time to sort all my photos but I have grabbed quite a few (!) of the Disney Memory Maker ones. As you can see, TC has a bit of an aversion to Ariel haha!


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