2017 | Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet

Henry - Ten Months.

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This past week Henry turned ten months old and I know that I am constantly asking this question but how in the world did that happen? How did my 6 pound 6 ounce newborn become this crawling babbling little boy just two months away from turning one?

He is such a happy little man. You will usually find him with a smile. Apart from the odd day where we are in teething hell. Talking of teeth he now has six of them. He seemed to be 'teething' for so long before any teeth actually appeared but in the space of two weeks he got three and the other three were not far behind them.

He's crawling, pulling himself up and cruising around the furniture. I brought him a walker yesterday so he's happily walking around rooms with that, looking mighty proud of himself at the same time.

I feel like I need eyes in the back of my head at the minute. This guy is into everything. If it's not nailed down then it's in his mouth or thrown from it's shelf onto the floor. His newest trick is to climb the stairs if either James or Emilie has forgotten to shut the baby gate. He literally gives me several heart attacks a day.

Bath time is still his favourite time of the day. If he's grumpy or having a bad day then a bath tub full of bubbles normally helps. He's not a fan of nappy changes, being made to stay still just annoys him!

Baby led weaning is still going well. So far he is pretty willing to give anything a go. He absolutely loves toast with Jam. Sausages too and broccoli. He's still breastfeeding like a champ. I cannot tell you the relief of making it this far! We had a few latching issues once he started getting teeth but I think we've sorted that now.. He's still waking several times a night to eat, which I'm not going to lie, after ten months is pretty draining. Bright side? I've learnt that I can function with very little sleep :)

I think this age between 9 months to two years is my favourite. They literally learn something new everyday and watching them start to engage with the world is amazing to watch...

And now I have to go because a certain ten month old is busy emptying all my kitchen cupboards.....


When Your Confidence Gets Knocked.

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I never intended to take a month long break from this space of mine. It also wasn't a conscious decision. Something came along though and pulled the rug from under me. I've never been the most confident person and this something took whatever confidence I did have and left with it. I nearly made the decision to not come back here at all. I've had the mouse hovered over the 'delete blog' option on more than one occasion. I couldn't do it though. I have never claimed to be the best writer in the world but Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet is my safe place and when push came to shove I just couldn't part with it. I spoke with my sister yesterday and she told me just to sit down and write. To not overthink it.. Just write.. 

When you get knocked down it's so easy to sit there and pick apart everything. What happened. Why did it happen? For me that then spirals into every other aspect of my life. My self esteem has always been balancing on a knife edge and it's something that I have to intentionally work on daily. I try to never put myself out there, always happy to hide in the background away from attention. I look at Emilie now, at 3 years old and I love her confidence. Her excitement at the smallest of things. At her age she doesn't care what people think. She loves life and she loves hard. That's probably one of my favourite things about children. They're so innocent that they don't see the bad in the world yet. They don't dwell on the past or worry about the future. They live in that moment.  I wish they never had to loose that. 

This month long break has taught me something though. No matter how many times your confidence gets shaken. No matter how many times you fall down. It doesn't matter, as long as you get back up. I teach that to my kids so I should practice it myself. Deleting this blog probably would have been the easy option but then what? Writing is a part of me. It's something that I've loved since before I can remember. I'm not going to change that just because I had a bad experience. 

So here I am. Confidence knocked but my motivation & drive still intact. Onwards and upwards! 

Mummy in a Tutu

The Tell Me More Tag.

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The lovely Lydia From What Lyd Did created this Tell Me More Tag and I decided to join in. I always love reading other posts like these. It's nice to get to know the blogger behind the blog a little more. 

What's the story behind your blog name? 
When I originally created this blog in 2012 it was called For Those Little Moments. Then about 2 years later I had a complete redesign and along with it I changed the name. I pondered for weeks on what the new name should be, it was actually getting to the point of frustrating!  Then one day I was sat in the garden watching the kids playing and the name Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet just popped into my head. The rest as they say is history. 

What's your real reason for blogging?
It started as a way for me to document my life as a first time Mum. Somewhere for me to write down all those memories. It's become so much more to me now though. I always say it's my free therapy. When life is busy and I don't get a chance to come here and write I end up all antsy and almost anxious. It's as if I need to get everything out of my head and until I do that I'm like a bear with a sore head. 

Best thing about blogging?
I've met some amazing people. I still don't really feel like I'm part of the whole blogging community but I have connected with a few really lovely ladies. I'd love to meet more though! 

Worst thing about blogging?
When I don't write a post for a while I end up beating myself up so badly. I want every post I publish here to be perfect and in reality, that's not 100% possible. There are going to be some that are better than others. Also lately the blogging world seems to be filled with drama. Women tearing each other down. That's not cool and it's not needed. 

Proudest moment so far?
It was probably when I wrote this post about my struggles with my son having high functioning autism and it got picked up by Mumsnet. A little accomplishment but a proud one for me! 

What are your ultimate blogging goals? Don't be shy!
This is a hard one! Ultimately I just want Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet to be a place where people come here, read and think, 'hey me too!' or 'Thank goodness I'm not the only one....." and then leave feeling better. 

If you released a book, what genre would it be?
Ever since I was a child I've wanted to write a novel. I would write so many short stories or start a novel and then leave it half finished because I was never sure if it was good enough. I want to be the next Jodi Picoult! 

If you released products, what would they be? Homeware, beauty, or something unexpected?
Ohhh! There are so many things! A line of baby boy clothes definitely, seen as the shops seem to have rack after rack of girls clothes and then one tiny bit for boys ha! 

What would you name the products and why? 
I actually have no idea. Maybe I could have a range of boys clothes and call it Rosy Cheeks & Muddy Feet?!

What has blogging taught you?
To be patient. It's not very often that something happens over night. I've been blogging five years now and I still haven't got any where near where I want to be. I am the worlds most impatient person so this has been a massive lesson for me. 

Sum up your blog in three words!
Real. Honest. Raw. 

I don't want to sugar coat everything or only share the best bits. Good days, bad days and everything in-between. Sometimes life sucks and it's okay to say that. 

If you want to take part in this tag then don't forget to leave me your links in the comments or over on Twitter so I can take a look! 


Preparing For Summer Travels.

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Howdy June! (How in the world is it June already. This year is just flying past at lighting speed....)

I have been loving the warm weather that we've been having the past week. Summer is well and truly on it's way and I don't think I could be anymore excited. Everything just feels so much easier during this time of year. Leaving the house without having to bundle the kids up for one. Suncream and hats and we're good to go. Salads for dinner, eating outside & being able to use the garden to name just a few more things :)

This summer I am hoping beyond hope that we can go on a trip. We haven't had a holiday since 2004 (madness I know!) There just always seems to be other things to pay for and do so holidays have always come bottom on the list. This year though I want the kids to experience that thrill & excitement of packing up and leaving on a little adventure. What could be better (or more British) than a good old camping trip!?

I've already begun looking into it so I thought I'd share some ideas on preparing for a camping weekend.

Finding the site! 

I've been mooching around looking at campsites and I came across the Campsites web page. You just search for a destination and it brings up all the campsites in that area and at a glance you can see what it offers. Electric hookup, internet access, swimming pool etc. You can also contact the campsites direct from the webpage. How awesome does this campsite look? Who even knew Glamping was a thing?

Keeping the kids occupied! 

Having not been on holiday for 13 years means that I've never travelled too far with children in tow. The furthest I've gone is London to Somerset with James as a baby and that was awful. I can only imagine a few hours more would be slightly worse, especially with three kids, including a baby under one! Pinterest has given me some great ideas for some Travel Activities for kids. I think James & Emilie would love them. I love the idea of making my own especially as it means I can include different things for their ages.

Prepping the house! 

I am totally the type of person that would leave for a few days away and forget to lock the back door or leave the hot water on. Thankfully this printable from SimpliSafe's Facebook page is a perfect checklist when you're leaving your house unattended. Notice the 'Turn water and gas off..' I'm pretty sure that one was written just for me ha! 

Fine Dining

Having a type A personality means that I like things to be organised, add having a baby with a food allergy into that and I'm already making lists of food that is dairy free, easily transportable and easy to store in a tent. The bonus of breastfeeding is that at least I don't have to worry about taking bottles, formula and a steriliser with me! 

Including the little ones!

James with his autism and sensory processing disorder likes structure and routine. He likes to know whats coming next and things out of the blue or out of his normal routine throw him for a loop. I'm going to try and include him as much as possible in the planning. I figured one good way would be letting him pack his own case. I think it's little things like this that will help him deal with the change easier. 

... And that's about as far as I've gotten. Now I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that I can make this camping trip a reality! 


Thankful Friday.

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I'm starting to really enjoy writing these weekly thankful posts. It's good to sit down and intentionally think about the good. No one week is perfect but even during 'bad' days or weeks, there is always good. Little slices of happiness that bring a smile. 

What were my slices of happiness this week? Well, I'm glad you asked :) 

1// A sunny park trip with Henry. He was fascinated by the grass! 

2// Listening to Henry giggle every time James even looks at him. 

3// Starting a new course with the Open Study College. After having each child I've done a distance learning course, just to stop my brain from turning to mush. After James I got my diploma in Psychology. After Emilie I studied Makeup Artistry and now after Henry, I am going for my Level 3 in Marketing & Social Media Management. I'm excited because I feel like it's actually something I could make a go off. Watch this space! 

4// Emilie telling me she 'loves me millions..' 

5// Listening to James tell me how him and 6 of his school friends are moving to LA when they leave school. They have it all planned out. Apparently they were going to go to New York but then changed their minds.. He ended the conversation with, "Just the tickets are going to set me back two grand.." He also informed me that I can come too!

6// Practicing for my theory test at the end of this month and passing several of the 'mock' exams. 

7// A beautiful sunny day after a day of constant rain. 

8// Eating the best bacon & sausage roll that I'm pretty sure was bigger than my head. 


Thrive Stress Free App.

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If you've been reading here for any amount of time you'll have probably realised that I've suffered from anxiety for as long as I can remember. It's normally always centred around my Emetophobia but sometimes life will throw something at me when I'm already anxious and the added stress will set me back. 
I've been doing a lot better the past 3 years, especially with the anxiety relating to my Emetophobia. That being said, some days it will sneak up on me and leave me stumbling. Also I think everyone should always be conscious of their mental health. Depression, stress and anxiety can affect anyone. 

A few weeks ago I was contacted by Thrive and asked if I wanted to try their new app called Stress Free. Thrive was founded by Dr Andres Fonseca, a psychiatrist with 20 years experience in helping patients with mental health issues and Richard Flower, a games developer. Along with the Stress Free app they have also designed Arachnophobia Free (I need this one too!) & Agoraphobia Free. 

My initial thoughts when I downloaded the app was how easy it was to set up. My email address and a password and I was all set. I liked the Island theme running throughout the app, it was relaxing from the get go. 

There were some initial questions to answer about I was generally feeling, what certain things were worrying me, how I had felt in the previous two weeks etc. Each morning when you log onto the app it asks you how you are feeling that day. 

It then offers you certain exercises to complete that day which they think may help you based off your results. It's as simple as that! 

The main page of the app looks like this below. You can then select whichever exercise you want to complete at that time. 

My favourites parts of the app are the "Breathing" & "Deep muscle".. I'm not normally a fan of apps where there is someone talking you through an exercise. (I once listened to a stop smoking hypnosis app and the woman drove me crazy, so much so I couldn't finish it. I did stop smoking though!) The voice talking you through these exercises is very inoffensive and actually slightly relaxing. 

I've been using this app for just under two weeks now and I have noticed a difference overall. I am definitely more aware of how I feel in certain circumstances and when I need to change my thinking. I can definitely see how using it on a long term basis would be beneficial to my own mental health! 

I received this app free for one month in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own. 

Henry - Seven Months.

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SEVEN months! Sometimes it feels like he is so much older. Not because he's doing anything more than a seven month old should be doing but just because he is so damn big! According to our home scales he weighs around 20lbs. I know they're not a 100% accurate way to weigh a baby but it's a way to get a good gauge of how he's doing. He's been in size 6-9 month clothes since he was five months old, still breastfeeding every 2-3 hours and is doing better and better everyday with solid food so I'd say he's doing well! 

This month Henry's mastered sitting up! I'm still cautiously leaving my breastfeeding pillow behind him so when he throws himself backwards he has a safe landing but he starting now to use his arms when he wants to change position. He also rolled over for the first time this month but has literally done that twice. He has no interest in rolling whatsoever. 

I wrote a post earlier this week about our adventures with Baby Led Weaning so far so I won't repeat that all over again. You can read that post here :) Everyday though he is doing better and better and is starting to chew like a pro. He seems to have a more savoury pallet. Toast appears to be his favourite followed by banana. He wasn't a fan of melon or kiwi. He'll give anything a go though. I am so thankful to say that above all else he is still a boob monster. Ha! 

Sleep.. Nights are hit and miss. Some nights he will only feed twice between 7pm and 6am.. Other times he gets up to 5 or 6 times. He does go back to sleep pretty much straight away so I can't really complain. Over the past week though there has been a lot of random night time crying which leads me to believe it's those pesky teeth, which are right under the gums but still not in a hurry to make their appearance. Both James & Emilie were around 7 months when they got their first teeth so I'm keeping my fingers crossed for this month! 

He still loves bath times. I swear this baby is a fish. Put him in the bath or the swimming pool and he is happy. His favourite toys are the jumperoo & his Sophie Giraffe. 

This month seems to have led to a bit of separation anxiety. It's not horrendous (yet!) but occasionally over the past two weeks if I hand him to someone else and I'm not in his direct line of vision we've had some tears. I read somewhere once that it's around this age that babies realise that they are not physically attached to their Mummy's and they suddenly become aware that we could walk away and not come back. I'm happy for the extra snuggles though :) 

Overall this month has been pretty great. I've never had an easy going baby before so this is a whole new world to me. He pretty much spends most of his day smiling and squealing.. 

Happy seven months Henry!

James Takes Over Mum's Blog!!!

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Today James asked me if he could start his own blog. We came to a compromise and I told him that he could take over my blog for the day..... 

MY LIFE STORY by James Bayliss.

{Me writing my first blog post}

I was born at 12:31 AM at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital. I weighed 7 pounds.

I stayed in the hospital for 3 days and then came home to our flat with Mum & Dad my birthday was 21st February. The first time I ever went out of our flat in London was to Westminster Bridge outside the Houses of Parliament! I lived there until I was 16 months old, and moved to Rushden.  My Auntie Dawn lived across the road from my flat.

{Walking around St James' Park}

When I was 4 I had a baby sister, Emilie. The night she was born I had a sleepover at my Mum's friends house. When I came home, to my surprise there was a REAL baby sister!

{Me and my little sister}

I was lucky because I didn't start school until I was 4 and a half. I went to Whitefriars Infants. I am still at the school but the Juniors. My friends are really nice and I have 6 of them. Now I'm lucky enough to have a bigger house AND a baby brother, Henry. He is the youngest, and I'm the oldest. I'm happy because this is my first blog post... for now. I moved from Rushden to Irthlingborough. I've lived here for 6 almost 7 months. Happy first blog everyone!!!!

Raising A Strong Willed Girl.

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When I found out that I was expecting a girl everyone I spoke to said the same thing. 
"Girls are so much easier than boys.."
James was a pretty easy going toddler at the time so I figured I was definitely onto a winner. All those people though, they were either messing with me or they were just plain wrong. 
Girls are a lot harder! 
From the moment Emilie came into this world on a hot July night in our living room, she has kept me on my toes. She spent the first sixteen months literally screaming. She refused to leave my side until she was two and a half. She has a shriek that can break glass and thinks nothing of throwing herself onto the floor in a tantrum. I swear she could make an amazing career on the stage in a dramatic west end show. 
She is the most girly tomboy I have ever met. She loves her dresses, shoes and playing with my make-up. She carries her babies around and feeds them whilst sitting with me so we can "have a chat." In the next breath she is off to help her Dad in the shed, coming back into the house later covered in dirt but happy. 

Raising Emilie has taught me that each child is different. Each child needs to be shown love in a different way, disciplined in a different way & taught in a different way. 

Emilie is a little whirlwind. A big personality for such a little girl. She literally throws herself head first into everything, and at three years old she doesn't have the time to think about the consequences. As hard as some days can be, I hope she never loses those traits. There is nothing I admire more than a strong, confident woman. For every tantrum, shriek and "I want to do it this way," She loves fiercely, has the biggest laugh and is so compassionate for someone so young. 

The past few months have been particularly tough. She's had so many changes all the whilst going through the threenager stage and I constantly have to remind myself that maybe her acting out is just her tiny self trying to cope with everything. Earlier this week I was up and about before the kids woke up. I heard little footsteps and then a bedroom door opening and then more footsteps coming down the stairs. A disheveled Emilie walks into the kitchen, rubbing her eyes that were barely open, her hair curly from where she had been sleeping, 'Mummy I have a sore throat,' I picked her up, carried her into the living room and sat with her on my lap for a few minutes, her hands stayed around my neck, whilst she woke up properly. It's moments like these where I remember that she is still so little. It's easy to forget sometimes, whilst I'm rushing from one job to the next, hurrying the kids along, asking them to get dressed or tidy their bedrooms. 
One day she will have the emotional maturity to not throw herself on the floor when someone says no to her but until then, it's my job to guide her and occasionally rein those tornado like qualities in. She's also teaching me at the same time. She's reminding me to slow down. To stop and embrace those hands around my neck, the belly laughs and the "Mummy can you read this book to me" moments. 

Some days parenting such a strong willed little girl can be so hard but loving her? Well thats easy... 


Baby Led Weaning!

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Truth be told, when Henry reached six months and was old enough to start trying solid food I was a little hesitant. I wanted so badly for breastfeeding to work this time around so I was (and still am,) thrilled that he is a boob monster! I'm so proud that we've both mastered the art of something that actually doesn't come as naturally as we're sometimes led to believe. 

So when the six month milestone rolled around, off course I was happy for the next stage but part of me was sad that already that first stage was over. I know he still needs mostly milk and "food before one is just for fun" but for a few days I was terrified that he'd try food and not want milk anymore. Silly, I know but I'm going to blame the hormones for that one. 

Both James & Emilie started solids before 6 months. James because of his reflux (around 4 and half months) & Emilie around 5 months, so I wasn't sure if Henry would actually wait until 6 months. It turns out he probably would have went longer. He didn't seemed fussed by it. The first two days I tried him with home made pureed vegetables.. He cried. He spat it out. He wanted no part in it. 

I gave him a break for a couple of days and then decided to try baby led weaning. Turns out he loves holding the food and feeding himself. We're going slowly and we haven't really got a routine to it. Some days he'll try lunch. Other days it's dinner or occasionally it's breakfast. If we're eating something that he can have and it doesn't contain dairy then I'll pop some on his high chair. His favourite at the moment seems to be Jam on toast. 

I have resorted to sitting on my hands so I don't jump up every time he gags. I've had to learn that there is a difference between gagging and choking. We've had a few gagging episodes but he always spits it out himself. 

Giving him sausage last night actually terrified me. He gagged once, spat it out and carried right on eating. He's mastered chewing and can demolish a rusk like no ones business. 

So many things I am doing differently this time around so even though Henry is my third and I should have this parenting thing down, I don't. I feel like a first time Mum again. I'm not the only one, right? 

Now I just need to find something to do with the freezer full of pureed vegetables... 


May Goals.

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Who else is kind of shocked that we're in the fifth month of the year already? Just me? A new month means some new goals! First though, lets see how I got on with my April ones. 

1// Get Outside! With being out of the house most of the week by the time the weekend comes around all I want to do is hunker down and forget that outside exists. With the weather warming up though and kids with an abundance of energy I want to make more of an effort to get out at the weekends. - Success! Lots of days out, park trips & dog walks. 

2// Print & organise photos. I take lots of photos. However all they do is sit on my phone. I miss the days of having to print them out and putting them in albums. (I love going to my Nan's, sitting with all her albums from when we were kids and flicking through them!) I want to go through all my photos on my phone and computer and get the best ones printed, then display them somehow. I'm not sure how yet. Maybe some in albums, some in scrap books and my favourites in frames. It's a work in progress :) - Big fail.. I haven't even printed one photo yet. 

3// Make a Summer Bucket list with the kids. I love a good bucket list :) Plus making one with the kids means that they will hold me accountable for it! - Started but not completed.. 

4// Read Happy Mum Happy Baby by Giovanna Fletcher. I have a habit of reading the same books over and over again but lately I've really enjoyed reading new books. The kids brought me Happy Mum Happy Baby for Mothers Day and it looks great so I'm looking forward to getting stuck into it. - I've n early finished reading this. I would have completed this already but a teething baby halted my flow. 

1// Print & organise photos. I'm bringing this over again from last months goals because it's something that I really want to get done.

2// Drink more water. I'm prone to kidney stones. In fact I'm battling one right now and I always forget the intense pain that they bring with them. I'm also awful for remembering to drink enough water. I want to make an effort to drink drink drink this month. 

3// Pass my theory test! It's booked for this month. I'm revising every day. Now just to pass it! 

4// Find a writing space. At the moment I'm sat up on the kitchen table and it's less than inspirational. I need to carve out a little space.. Not easy in house with five people!

What are your goals for this month?


Thankful Friday.

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It might not be Friday anymore but technically I did start writing this on Friday afternoon, I just never got to finish it.. #MumLife.
It's been a few weeks since I wrote a weekly thankful post. Half term with the kids was so busy that it's been a while since I've even sat at the computer properly. They only went back to school on Wednesday so I feel like I'm still trying to get back into our 'School routine.' 

So, what am I thankful for this week?

1// A great half term. Sure there were tantrums, fights and days where I didn't think I would make it until bedtime but we also had lots of fun! Two BBQ's, picnics and trips to the park. Lazy days at home with DVD's and afternoon's in the garden. 

2// Henry has mastered sitting unaided! He has no interest in rolling over yet but can sit like a Boss :) I keep my breastfeeding pillow behind him because if he wants to lie down he just throws himself back and then we end up with a bumped head and lots of tears. He looks so grown up now! 

3// I have my new Media kit all sorted! The lovely Jess who I originally met through Twitter a while ago designed my first one and I contacted her last week looking for a new design. I love it!

4// An evening spent with my sister where by the end of it my sides hurt from laughing. 

5// Some gorgeous weather. Especially over half term. 

6// Watching Henry start to explore his first tastes of food :) A post on this will be up soon! 

What are you thankful for this week? 


Henry - Six Months.

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Henry, today you turn six months old and I honestly cannot remember what life was like without you. You have slotted into my life so perfectly that it doesn't seem possible that just several months ago you weren't even here. We've been on quite the journey since your arrival and not only have you come on in leaps about bounds but so have I and I have you to thank for that.

According to our home scales you weigh about 18 pounds and have been in size 6-9 month clothes for close to a month now. You're a big boy who loves his milk! I had only one goal when it came to feeding you and that was for the first time to make it to six months of exclusive breastfeeding and today we've accomplished that! I have nothing against formula or bottles (your brother and sister loved them!) but I am so proud of every single one of your chubby little rolls! It hasn't been easy and three bouts of thrush prove that. There have been nights where I've been so tired and literally begged you for sleep but now I am so glad that I never gave in. Now comes for the fun that is solid foods! I'm excited to see how you take to it and have a little freezer stock pile of purees. I think we're going to do a mixture of puree & baby led weaning.

You gotten yourself into a little bedtime routine and thankfully it fits in with James & Emilie too. You have your last feed about 6.30pm and are normally in bed for 7pm. Most nights you will sleep for 3-4 hours before you wake for another feed. Now we've mastered feeding lying down you tend to go straight back to sleep and wake roughly every 3 hours. Sometimes more sometimes less.

You've been such a sleepy baby these past 6 months but I can definitely see a change in regards to how long you can stay awake during the day. Sometimes you need a nap after 2 hours, other times it's been 4 hours and you're still wide awake. You've started 'playing' a lot more and it's so cute to watch and see what toys interest you.

You have been practicing your sitting and can last a few minutes before you topple over. It makes me laugh because you're so close to sitting completely unaided but still can't roll over! You're quite happy lying on your back that I just think you have no interest to try and change that. You have come close a couple of times but you just get frustrated and give up.

Overall you are so happy! I've never had a happy baby so this is completely new to me. As soon as we figured out your allergy to dairy it changed everything. You basically cry if you are hungry or tired. James & Emilie can get the biggest smiles out of you and they love it!

You love bath time, music & dancing. Your jumperoo & door bouncer are definitely your favourite toys. You do not like being still although you are the cuddliest baby who loves a good snuggle. It doesn't take much to make you happy :)

Happy six months Henry!



38 Things That Make Me Happy.

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Inspired by my favourite book 14000 Things To Be Happy about.. My own happiness list :)

1 Baby giggles
2 Sunshine
3 That first sip of Coffee
4 Mint choc chip ice cream
5 Writing
6 Printing photos
7 My children laughing
8 Loosing myself in a good book
9 Bacon sandwiches
10 Coffee shops
11 The kids piling onto the bed in the morning
12 Warm evenings
13 Bonfires
14 Publishing a new post
15 The magic of Christmas morning
16 Candles
17 Receiving a hand written letter
18 Fresh bedding
19 Chubby rolls on a baby
20 Homemade soup
21 Large blankets
22 Stars on a clear night
23 The smell of a new book
24 New stationery
25 Music
26 Sleepy baby cuddles
27 A warm bath on a cold night
28 A cool shower on a hot day
29 BBQ's
30 Writing a to-do list.
31 Open windows
32 Laughing so much your sides hurt
33 Kitchen dance parties with the kids
34 Little hands inside mine
35 Fresh flowers
36 Black & white photos
37 Dream catchers
38 Lazy weekend mornings

What makes you happy?

April Goals.

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It feels like Spring has finally sprung! The weather is getting better by the day, the clocks have gone forward and we've exchanged waking up to the bitter cold for waking up to chirping birds which is always a good mood booster. For the first time ever I completed all of my goals that I set out for the month :) 

1// Read #GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso. I've heard some great things about this book so I'm excited. I downloaded it on ibooks on my phone so I can read whilst I feed the baby. - I'm nearing the end of this book so I'm counting this one as a win. I've loved every page and it's completely changed my way of thinking :) 

2// Keep my blogging mojo! After taking an enforced break due to my MacBook being broken I am so excited to be back blogging. I missed it so much and have so much enthusiasm right now and I don't want to loose that. With three kids and one still being a tiny baby I don't think I'll be posting five times a week for a long time yet but I'm aiming for three times a week. - My mojo is still going strong. At the moment there is no real schedule to my posting because life is crazy hectic with 3 kiddos! 

3// Cooking! I mentioned this in my Currently post yesterday but I have been so lazy with my cooking since Henry came along. I want to get back to cooking proper meals again that actually require you to do more than place something frozen on a tray, into the oven and then wait for the timer to beep. - Another win for this month! It may have helped that I had a delivery of a new cooker two weeks ago! 

4// Prepare for weaning. Staying on the subject of food. Henry turns five months on the 14th. I want to hold him off until 6 months before I start weaning him but I do need to purchase a high chair, bowls, spoons etc and also start batch cooking some food for him. With James & Emilie I would spend a day once a month in the kitchen cooking batches of vegetables, fruits, etc and then freezing them into ice cube trays. I loved watching them have their first tastes of new foods. I somehow can't believe I'm about to do it all over again. - My freezer stock pile is growing by the day although I still have over two weeks before I plan to introduce those first tastes of food. 

Now for some new ones :) 

1// Get Outside! With being out of the house most of the week by the time the weekend comes around all I want to do is hunker down and forget that outside exists. With the weather warming up though and kids with an abundance of energy I want to make more of an effort to get out at the weekends. 

2// Print & organise photos. I take lots of photos. However all they do is sit on my phone. I miss the days of having to print them out and putting them in albums. (I love going to my Nan's, sitting with all her albums from when we were kids and flicking through them!) I want to go through all my photos on my phone and computer and get the best ones printed, then display them somehow. I'm not sure how yet. Maybe some in albums, some in scrap books and my favourites in frames. It's a work in progress :)

3// Make a Summer Bucket list with the kids. I love a good bucket list :) Plus making one with the kids means that they will hold me accountable for it! 

4// Read Happy Mum Happy Baby by Giovanna Fletcher. I have a habit of reading the same books over and over again but lately I've really enjoyed reading new books. The kids brought me Happy Mum Happy Baby for Mothers Day and it looks great so I'm looking forward to getting stuck into it. 

What are your goals for this month?


I've Been Keeping A Secret.

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I've been keeping a secret. 


This parenting three children gig is hard. 

Over the past few weeks I've had several comments said to me, ranging from, 'How do you always look awake, with so little sleep.." to "You make it look so easy."

First things first. The whole looking so awake part is purely down to a lot of expensive makeup and a stupid amount of concealer under the eyes.

Two children, I had a handle on. They were both sleeping through the night. Out of nappies and feeding themselves. Apart from the daily teeth brushing battles I was doing ok. 

Now though, I have a constant case of Mum guilt. My house never looks tidy. Henry's cot is full of clean washing, that I'm not sure will ever make it back to their drawers (but at least it's clean right?) I try and get up half an hour before the kids in the morning to get a head start. (Most days they hear me.) I'm outnumbered and my children know it.  

The Mum guilt though, it's real and it's harsh. 

I feel bad for James. He's the eldest so I feel like he gets the rough end of the deal. He's at the age where he can help me but then I feel guilty. He's becoming more independent so it's easy to forget that he still needs me just as much as the other two do. 
I feel bad for Emilie. She went from being the baby of the family to all of a sudden I'm asking her to try and get herself dressed, expecting her to try and keep the noise down whilst the baby sleeps and not to empty the dog shampoo down the toilet. (She totally did this last week..) 
I feel bad for Henry. James had me to himself for 4 and a half years before Emilie came along. Then Emilie was only 6 weeks old when James started school so she had me to herself all day every day. Henry thought, he might have a lot of my attention all day but he never has my undivided attention. 

Off course the good outweighs the bad. I am never short on cuddles or sticky kisses. Just making a chocolate spread sandwich earns me a 'You're the best' title. I literally have the best job in the world, but today I'm being honest and telling you that it's hard. I've never been this tired or disorganised. I've never been so anxious about my parenting decisions. I've never second guessed myself so much. 

So if you see my and I look as fresh as a daisy and I look like I've got a handle on everything.. Know that I haven't. I just had time to put my make up on that morning ;) 


You Are Amazing - Happy Mothers Day.

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Happy Mothers Day!

I've been wanting to post all week but it's been so busy with babies, school runs, and day to day life that I had to put it on the back burner. Then today I sat down to write a Currently post but at the last minute changed my mind to write this one instead. I want to write about the awesome mothers that I know. Mothers who day in and day out work hard and love their children even harder. The Mum's that push push push all day and then lie awake at night going over in their head what they didn't manage to accomplish, what is still on their to-do list. Mum's that rock their screaming baby until the early hours and then get two hours sleep, just to do it all again.

There is so much pressure on Mum's today. We feel pressure to look perfect & have gleaming houses. We feel like our three year olds need to know their alphabet and be able to spell their names for fear of being judged. We rock babies and then feel bad because we're told that we should lie them down awake. We bake cookies for the school fete. We wipe tears. We attend school assemblies, sports days, parents meeting and after school clubs. We make dinners, do the washing, sweep the floor from the last meal before the next one. We wake up in the middle of the night to sooth the toddler who's had a bad dream. We fold laundry and then tip toe into the bedrooms of sleeping children to put it all away. We schedule play dates & birthday parties. We give cuddles and make boo boos all better. We smile when sometimes we feel like crying. We wake up and often wish we could have an extra hour in bed.

When James was 6 months old I phoned my Mum one day and simply said 'thank you.' She had no idea what I was talking about. I told her that I never realised how much hard work parenting was until I had James. I didn't realise all the sacrifices she had made. All the tears she had shed until I was a Mum myself. The fact that she done it all mostly on her own just made me even more in awe of her. 

I'm going to say one thing. If you have never read my blog before or you never read it again, just know this one thing. You are all doing an amazing job. Whether you formula feed or breast feed. Whether you rock your baby to sleep or lie him down wide awake and he soothes himself. Whether you make every meal from scratch or the local take away knows you on a first name basis. Whether you throw perfect Pinterest birthday parties or you are the Queen of last minute-throw-it-together-party-bags.. (raises my own hand!)

When you lie there at night and worry whether you done a good job that day. When you worry whether you could have handled that toddler tantrum differently. (My 3 year old told me I was the worst Mum in the world whilst I was writing this because I wouldn't allow her a chocolate cake) Know that you are the perfect mother for your children. They do not remember the time outs or the time you gave them chicken nuggets rather a meal from scratch. 

To them you are perfect. 

You are their world.
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