Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet

November Goals.

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November. The month where everyone starts playing Christmas music and Costa roll out their seasonal cups. The fact that Christmas is just several weeks away terrifies both me and my bank balance. 

A new month means some new goals. I've been a bit lax in posting my monthly goals lately but I like the ritual of doing it and the fact that it holds me more accountable for them. 

1//  Cook more 'homemade' dinners.  It's so easy when rushing into the house from the school run with hungry kids and a screaming one year old just to throw something from the freezer into the oven. This evening though I made a homemade pie. It tasted amazing and didn't take that much longer to prepare & cook. I love soups & casseroles this time of year so I need to add them onto my menu. 

2// Sort through all the kids clothes. There is so much in their drawers that they've outgrown but it's a job that I've been putting off for weeks but needs to be done.. *sigh*

3// Attend a fireworks display. I've only been to one in the past 7 years. The kids have always been too young and have never coped well with their bedtime being messed with. Now they're a little older I think it's time. The baby is so laid back that I don't think he'll even notice that his bedtime will have been moved!

4// Finish reading Like A Queen by Constance Hall. I started it a few days ago. So far it has made me laugh & cry in equal measure. Lately it's been hard finding the time to fit reading in but this is a book that I need to finish.

November... Let's do this..

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Snapshots

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It's been a while since I picked up a proper camera to take photos of the kids. Mine has been on the fritz and rather than try and figure out what the problem was, it was much easier just to turn to my phone to take photos of those little moments during the day.

I have digital album upon album of James. All nearly organised, shared on Facebook, for every month of his life up until he was three years old. Then I fell pregnant with Emilie and life got even crazier. Add a third child into the mix and poor Henry is lucky that I even remember to take a photo of him! Gone are the days of my monthly albums. I've slacked off and truth be told, I'm kicking myself for it.

This past weekend I borrowed my sister all singing all dancing Nikon D7000 and instantly fell in love with it. It would be an understatement to say that I went slightly OTT with photos the past few days..






I think it's definitely time I fixed my camera and started using it again. With subjects as cute as this to photograph I'd be stupid not to... :) 

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One.

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And just like that he's One.. 

It's crazy to think that already twelve months have passed since Henry came into this world. Time seems to speed up when you have a newborn and it feels like just moments ago that I was holding my six pound baby. Now here is is, twenty-two pounds, babbling away and taking his first steps. 

It's taken me three children but I think I've finally found my stride as a Mum. I'm more patient this time around. More forgiving of myself. Better able to tolerate the sleepless nights. I know that this phase won't last forever. With James & Emilie I was so hellbent on routines & structure, worrying about every little thing. I'm more laid back this time. We still have a routine. We still like structure. We just have a calmer Mum this time around. Those midnight cuddles won't be on offer in years to come. Those cries in the middle of the night where all he wants is me will one day stop. When you look at the big picture rather than the moment, it puts it all in perspective. 


His birthday was spent with friends & family celebrating him. It's been a year of firsts. A year of gummy smiles, sleepless nights, messes & memories. A year of tears and tantrums, some from him, some from me. Reflux & dairy intolerance. First words and first steps. Six teeth and twelve months of breastfeeding. The first birthday is a big milestone. A turbulent year where everything shifts and changes but I wouldn't change a moment of it. 

I love this age. It's always been my favourite. Everything to him is new and fascinating and it seems like he learns something new each day. Two weeks ago Henry took his first steps and each day he takes a few more. He's climbing all over the sofas now. He still only says "Mama" & 'Uh-Oh" but I have a sneaking suspicion that once he's mastered the walking, he'll move on to the talking. He has the cutest laugh but quite the temper. A bubble bath is the cure to any of his bad moods. He adores his big brother and sister. I think the feeling is mutual :)

Happy 1st birthday Henry! 


As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was about to begin... 

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My Best Self

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If you know me then you know that I absolutely adore Victoria from In The Frow. She's smart, funny, beautiful and an amazing writer. Her recent post about being the best version of yourself is what has inspired me to sit and write this post.



I've never really sat and thought properly about the different sides to my personality. There is me the Mum. There is me the wife. The daughter. The sister. The blogger. There is the Liane that is the biggest grouch in the morning. The Liane that is happy when my kitchen is spotless. The side of me that gets overwhelmed easily. There is the introvert side of me that is quite content to sit alone and read a book or to write for hours. The side of me that is happy when I'm on the sofa surrounded by my children.  I know my faults and regularly focus on them but what if instead I tried to figure out what is my best version and spend more time focusing on that? I don't know why I've never thought of this before. Surely it's better to focus on the positives rather than the negatives.

So what is my best version of myself?

If I'm being completely honest here, I've completely lost myself in motherhood. For eight years now my life has revolved around my children. First James came along. With the first child, your whole world changes. Life as you've known it completely changes and you go from being just responsible for yourself to being responsible for this tiny little person who depends on you for everything.

Two kids isn't too bad. Your world has already changed so it's not as big of a culture shock. The third though.. Wow. You're outnumbered. You're tired. You're running from school runs, to nursery runs, to the next nap time, the return school run, dinner, homework, bath time. It's easy to loose yourself. I'm completely wrapped up in being a Mum. That's not a bad thing. It's just where I am at this point in my life and I'm completely okay with that.

I'm lucky that I can survive on little sleep. I do know that I am my best self when I've had at least five hours though.

I am my best self when I am able to wake up, get dressed and have my first coffee of the day before the little ones wake up. Those few minutes of solitude prepares me for the day.

I am my best self when I like my outfit. My hair is done and I am able to put on my makeup.

I am my best self when the sun is shining.

I am my best self when I've organised myself the night before. When the school uniforms are all sorted and ready in little piles. When I've washed the dishes & cleaned the kitchen before bed. I hate waking up to mess.

I am my best self when I am on time for the school run, doctors appointments or play dates. Being late just puts me in a bad mood.

I am my best self when I have patience with my children. It's easy to snap when they do something naughty or they spill a drink over the floor that I've just cleaned but when I stop, breath and remember that they're just children I'm better able to deal with any incidents.

I am my best self when I have patience with myself. My type A personality makes me want to do everything right there and then. Numerous times a day I have to remind myself that I am just one person. Rome wasn't built in a day.

I am my best self when I make the time to play with the kids. Sometimes I have to tell them to wait a moment because I'm caught up with the baby or ask them to wait until after I've finished cooking dinner but getting down on the floor with them and playing a board game or sitting at the table with Emilie and her beloved play dough and making the millionth play dough sausage makes them happy which in turn makes me happy.

I am my best self when I remember to look after myself. To drink that pint of water. To go to bed at a reasonable time.  To stop and eat lunch. Snacking on the kids leftovers does not count!



I'm going to make a conscious effort to focus these points and be the best version of myself!


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