Sunday, 22 January 2017

{The Ordinary Moments} #3 A Rough Week for Mummy

I struggled writing a title for this post. I didn't want to write something negative, but in all honestly this week has been a real struggle. Some weeks and sometimes months are just like that. For me, January is always a hard month. Sophie's anniversary is the 1st February, and the lead up to it, coupled with the disappearance of the pretty Christmas lights and cheer, and the hard crash back to reality and the grey days, usually means I find it hard.

This week started ok, and then took a turn for the worse when on Tuesday, Mason started struggling to breathe and wheezing again. It has been just over a month since he was admitted to hospital, and luckily this time we had inhalers and I was able to star using them quickly. We did end up at the doctors on Wednesday, and came out loaded with more steroids and antibiotics for a chest infection. I felt so sorry for him, and also couldn't believe we have been hit with another patch of illness after our poorly Christmas. Mason hates the meds and inhalers to the point he becomes hysterical, and it is so tough as his mum to have to administer them, even though I know I'm doing it for the best.

Mason being poorly had a knock on effect to Ollie, in that it made his (already somewhat challenging) behaviour worse - I think Ollie struggles when Mason gets attention, which is totally understandable, but it doesn't make it easy.

His way of reacting is usually to try and 'hurt' me - he doesn't like Mummy, only Daddy, and he point blank refuses to listen to anything I say. He's argumentative, and seems to take pleasure in riling his siblings and me and Ell. It results in tempers becoming fraught, and I really do take it personally even though I know its a phase that will end as soon as it starts.

All these things together, couple with my thoughts over Sophie - this year marks 5 years and I'm really struggling more than usual - meant I woke up on Thursday and the thought of getting out of bed was too much. In my teens and early twenties I really struggled with anxiety, and I have the odd flare ups, never needing medication as I have been able to pull myself out of it with a bit of time. I cried and cried, and I think I scared Ell to be honest. I haven't hit a low point like that in a long long time. Once Ell had done the school run, I realised I needed to give myself a kick up the bum - I know it doesn't work like this for everyone, but I find I can pull myself out of it. For the first time in days, whilst Mason slept, Ollie played lovely with no tantrums and I purged the kitchen cupboards, clipped the dog (both jobs I have been avoiding) and then as Izzie had Forest School and didn't need to be picked up until 4.30pm, we got ready to take Harley out for a walk. I'm a big believer in fresh air, and we rugged Mason up, and got Ollie ready and headed off to 'the trees'.

I took my camera, as I always try to do now, and managed to get some photos of Ollie. Mason was quite content in the pushchair, and so Ollie was mostly able to have our full attention whilst walking and he loved it. I think its easy to forget that being the middle child isn't always the easiest, and it was lovely to give him some attention. It also shocked me when looking back through the photos I took of him, how grown up he looked suddenly. He turned 4 in December, and will start school this year. I want to be able to enjoy my time with him.

I think I take his behaviour towards me so much more personally because he is my rainbow baby. All my babies were equally wanted, and are equally adored, but after losing Sophie, I relied on Ollie being born to bring some light back in. I was desperate to fill the emptiness, and so when he says 'don't like you mummy' it hurts all that much more. I'm determined to try and remember when these moments happen, that he is only 4 and he really doesn't mean it, and that I have to be the grown up and shrug it off. I adore this little man. His behaviour is 'ordinary' at the moment, but I know it won't always be that way. I love these photos I took of him on Thursday, they really capture 'Ollie'. As for me, its now Sunday and I'm thankfully feeling back to my brighter self.

I'm loving linking up with the Ordinary Moments with Katie and Donna this year - these are the parts of life I would probably forget otherwise, so its wonderful to be able to record them. See who else had linked up here...

The Ordinary Moments

Monday, 16 January 2017

{Living Arrows 2017} #1

 “You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth” Kahlil Gibran

My intention when I started blogging last summer, was to record all the memories of the kids growing up - the big moments, but the small ones too. I hadn't seen the Living Arrows Linky until recently and I'm so excited to be joining in - albeit a bit late for the start of the year. I take a lot of photos on my 'big' camera, and I enjoy it, but the smaller moments are normally captured on my iPhone, and that is where all my images this week came from. Three photos of my monkeys celebrating small moments of their childhood....

Mason wants to do everything his siblings do now - we went on a trip to the park saw we needed a bit of fresh air, and discovered the toddler area was shut, so he was loving getting to go on the big swing with Ollie.

Ollie has become really confident in riding his new scooter - lately he seems to be growing up too fast right in front of me - he is so happy that he can now ride it round corners, instead of picking it up and changing the direction before getting back on.

We weren't very lucky with the snow - we had the tiniest dusting in our corner of Wiltshire, but Izzie and Ollie were so excited - they wanted to build a snowman, and make snow angels - bless them, there wasn't enough to do that, but we still managed to get a (mildly) snowy photo before school.

See who else has linked up with Living Arrows here...

Living Arrows

Sunday, 15 January 2017

{The Ordinary Moments} #2 Ice Cream at the Seaside in January

On the weekends I struggle. It's no secret now that the kids are growing up, I find Saturdays when Ell plays football really hard with three kids on my own - if you follow me on Instagram , you'll regularly see my Saturday moans. This time of year, it is also harder to get out the house with them, being cold, dark and often rainy. After a miserable Saturday last week, where the kids did nothing but fight and make a mess, by the time Ell got home from football I had had enough.

I made the spur of the moment decision, that on Sunday we were going to go somewhere, to walk the dog. I wanted to go to the seaside as my head was fuzzy and I felt in dire need of fresh air. Weston Super Mare is just under an hour from us, and this time of year you are able to take dogs on the beach. The weather in Wiltshire was really foggy and damp, but the closer we got to the coast, the brighter it became. Visiting Weston for a winter dog walk was also on my UK Travel Bucket List for 2017.

We spent a few hours there, eating fish and chips for lunch, having a lovely walk along the beach, wrote our names in the sand and had a paddle in the sea as the tide was in (low tide at Weston can be dangerous as it is very muddy) and then we got ice cream (Mason made it his mission to eat everyone elses) - it was 10oC and un seasonably warm, and it was lovely.

I felt like I could start the week feeling so much more positive, and my head felt really clear, and it was lovely to have some family time, where no one was fighting. 

I've included a few of the photos I took, which sum up our day perfectly. I hope we can have many more Sundays the same this year.

To see who else has linked with the lovely Donna (What The Redhead Said) and Katie (Mummy Daddy Me) for The Ordinary Moments this week, click here...

The Ordinary Moments

The Siblings Project - January 2017

Ummm, how are we halfway through January? I swear yesterday it was Christmas Eve?!
January has been pretty quiet so far for these monkeys, settling back into their school and pre school routines, and for Mason and me, getting used to having a quieter house again. Both Izzie and Ollie have settled back into school well - especially Izzie, considering it must be weird not having her best friend around, now she has moved away. Ollie has also gone back to preschool without any fuss, which is amazing, since last year we were having to convince him to go every morning. He is still asking when he gets to go to big school with Izzie - strange since they fight like cat and dog.

Our mornings have become hectic once again, after the Christmas break - Ollie is going through a stage of refusing to do anything for himself - age 4 has been pretty testing so far. I'm not sure if we are all just used to Izzie being so independent - and she has been from a young age (a girl/boy thing maybe?). We are always late at the moment, no matter how organised I am - normally because someone is arguing or fighting, or dragging their feet. Also the sheer amount of clothes we are needing to put on everyone, each time we leave the house is frustrating - the weather is so cold at the moment - just how January should be I suppose.
Mason seems to miss having Izzie and Ollie around, although I think he is secretly loving having the toys to himself again - its not fun when your bossy big siblings want to take over all the time.

For the most part we are trying to entertain them at weekends to limit the amount of squabbling. Last Sunday we took Harley for a walk on Weston Super Mare Beach, which is about an hour from us. It was quiet, and weirdly warm, and we let Mason out of the back carrier so he could have a run around, and I managed to get these photos (with a LOT of outtakes).

Without further ado, here are my siblings in January 2017....

Izzie is loving:
*MC2 Dolls
*Colouring and Drawing
*Her new scooter

Ollie is loving
*Power Rangers Dino Charge
*His Uncles 20 year + Old Lego and building with it
*Eating - this boy would have 20 snacks a day if you would let him - i'm wondering if he is going through a growth spurt.

Mason is loving:
*his Toot Toot Animals
*running away - he is so quick and you have have to have eyes in your bum at all time with him
*giving kisses - if he really loves you, you get a nice open mouthed one!

I'm excited to link up with The Siblings Project in 2017 - I love taking photos of the three of them, even if it is painful at times, and its great to see them grow through photos every month. You can check out who else has linked up and see their beautiful sibling photos here...

The Me and Mine Project

Saturday, 14 January 2017

My 'Mum Uniform' Wishlist - Next Spring 2017 | Style on Saturday

As a teenager, it was a standing joke in our house that when the new season Next Catalogue was delivered, my mum would try and hide it, as she knew I would have my nose in it straight away.
These days, it is no different, except maybe it is easier as the entire collection is available online - back in my teenage days they used to send a CD Rom with the catalogue - showing my age a bit there.

Since becoming a mum, my style has become rather predictable, a lot of navy, stripes, denim and tan accessories - my mum uniform if you will. I still love fashion, its just become a bit more reserved.

The New Spring 2017 Next catalogue arrived the other week, and I had a quick nosy through, and chose a few staple pieces for my spring wardrobe - hopefully ones I can transition through from Winter.

Here are my choices - there were loads of other lovely things, but not very practical for a school run mum - these pieces will be.

All images ©Next

Every year I buy a new pair of tan sandals - they go great with everything, especially jeans as the weather gets a bit warmer. I also love them with white summer dresses. The pattern/detail on these are really pretty too.

I love the flared sleeve trend that is apparent in this seasons catalogue, and I love a cable knit jumper. I really like the navy trim around the neckline on this jumper too. It looks like the perfect spring knit.

I love these jeans - this is a bit of a cheat as I already own a pair, but they are great for hiding 'mum tum' and nice and high waisted, without looking frumpy. They also keep their shape amazingly, and don't go saggy around the knees. Both jumpers above would look great with them too.

As I said above anything navy is very welcome in my wardrobe. I love the look of wearing a shirt under a jumper but often find it is too bulky, hence my love for this top. The long cuffs fit in with the flared sleeve trend, and I think this will look lovely with the tan sandals and jeans as the weather gets warmer - until then, it will look good with tan/brown ankle boots.

I'm hoping to make this a regular feature, whether it is clothes for myself or the kids -  I've also got my eye on some lovely pieces from Joules and ASOS, so keep an eye out for them. I've linked all the items so you can find them easily if you would like to get them yourself. 
Leave me a comment below if there are any lovely Next pieces that have caught your eye - I'd love to know....

Disclaimer: I've not been sponsored to write this post in any way - I just really love these items.


Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Christmas Photo Round Up 2016

It is well into January now, and i;ve written  few posts which have involved our Christmas period 2016. It was a funny old one - the build up went on forever, and there was a lot of illness (including a scary hospital stay for Mason) in our house. We still managed to get a lot done, and loads of memories made.

I just wanted to do a quick round ups of my favourite photos (in no particular order), so here they are - the Christmas Izzie was 6, Ollie turned 4 and Mason was 1...

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