26 Aug 2015

A New Venture - It's all about books

I haven't been as organised as I usually am over here and found myself trying to catch up on posts and scheduling which has resulted in me missing days. Mix in with this a good dose of bloggers block and can't find anything interesting enough to share without boring us all.

The reason my head is all a bit all over the place is because I've become an Usborne Books Independent Organiser, which in a nutshell means I now sell these gorgeous books at parties, events, online and other establishments.

It really has consumed me totally, I have always loved books and the written word, just holding a book takes me to a happy place. Libraries are my idea of heaven and I always wanted to be around books and this gives me that chance.

The thrill I get from finding books for people who say "my boy is 3 and loves sport" or "anything to do with Knights and Castles please" is brilliant and then once I've got a delivery of books that I can look at and skim through and pass onto happy customers is fantastic.

I can be found on Facebook here  or if you fancy browsing the catalogue of over 2000 books please find them here:

If you are interested in receiving books or joining my team or just chatting about books, please feel free to contact me.

I'm going to start a series of book reviews with Bubba and I so please keep your eyes out for that.

24 Aug 2015

The Work Struggle - Juggling childcare

People often tell me it's nice that I've got the best of both worlds, I get to go to work, have a bit of 'me time' and I also get to spend lots of quality time with my children as I'm only working part time.

The reality is exhausting and fairly fraught most days, I'm playing catch up and not always giving the children the best of me and mix in with that the summer holidays and the jumble continues. Childcare is a struggle and I don't want to burden family too much with my babies but I need to work and they need to be with someone who cares, that's the very least I owe them.

At the moment my parents are taking care of Bubba whilst I'm at work and cub goes to nursery as normal, its amazing that they do this for me and I'm extra lucky because I drop of cub at nursery and drive bubba and myself to work, my dad then comes and picks up my girl and takes her back to their house.  Two of those days my dad then drives back to work, we do it this way because I only work four hours a day and I'd spend most of it travelling otherwise.

I then collect cub from nursery and go to get Bubba from my parents house and our day continues as I try and fit in all the other things that need doing.

People see the summer holidays as an amazing time where as a mother you get to spend lazy days in your pj's doing absolutely nothing but crafting with your children. Reality doesn't match up and I feel eternally guilty that it's my choice to work (although we do need to pay the bills) and that they share my time with the mundane bits of life everyday during the week.

I don't even want to think what I'll do when next year my little boy is in preschool and my girl at big school and I have to juggle full days of caring for them. How on earth do other parents manage it?

19 Aug 2015

Wicked Wednesday - I've got a climber

He was sat nicely playing and then I looked up, I told him to stand still, I actually shouted it...not because I was worried for his safety initially but because I wanted to take a photo...he pretended I wasn't there...

He stood on the table next and tried to step off the edge...I took him off the table at that point...

This is only the beginning...

I'm linking up with #WickedWednesday over at Brummymummyof2.co.uk


17 Aug 2015

Doing more washing - with Comfort Intense

One of the many things that people don't tell you about when you have kids is the amount of washing you start to do. It multiplies daily and the elusive bottom of the washing basket is...well...elusive!

My children love going out in the garden and digging things (anything) and always get their clothes dirty. I don't mind but it doesn't help my poor washing basket that's bursting at the seams already...

The other thing people don't tell you is that on a sunny day, your main source of satisfaction is that you were able to put the washing outside and it dries in no time. Trying telling your twenty something self that you'd have found that a pleasure...not likely!

So when we got the chance to try Comfort Intense, Sunburst, I wasn't aware how much washing it would make me do (I didn't think I could do any more). As the first load was drying I was scouring the house for things to wash, all our beds got an earlier than expected mid week wash, as did all the towels and the kids comforter toys - it did make the boy cry as his little blue and white teddy went round and round in the machine but I was on a mission so it had to be done!

Well.... here's my real confession...I've never used fabric conditioner. I know, I know, madness you say! A couple of times after the babies were born I used a sample that you get free but didn't follow it up with any more attempts. Well in my defence, I always hated those strong smelling ones where your clothes announce you are there before you even enter the room. I have fairly sensitive skin and use unsented washing tablets anyway and don't want to be associated with a strong whiff of detergent as I walk past.

Comfort is a subtle fragrance, it's still there but it's more of a summer breeze, it catches your nose every now and again, a bit like perfume or flowers. It also keeps it's wonderful fresh fragrance that lasts on your clothes, I washed my cardigan and the last few days I've worn it a lot what with this changeable weather and I still get that subtle fragrance each time I put it on.

Our towels are a bit bouncier now and the bed sheets, don't get me started on those. It was heaven going to bed. I've now literally washed everything in sight that I could possibly get my hands on. I still have lots of the liquid left because you don't need a great deal in each wash.

I'm definitely a convert and will be using this in every wash and can't wait to try some of the other fragrances although being ultra concentrated it may be a while until I can sample them but that's not a problem either.

With thanks for the lovely gardening kit and sample of Comfort Intense for us to try, my girl was over excited about growing sunflowers.

12 Aug 2015

The Quiet Time Box - For those early morning wake ups

I recently had some issues around Bubba interrupting me when I put the cub to bed, he takes ages to fall asleep and wants you in the room whilst he does. Bubba gets bored on her own or just wants to know what I’m doing so keeps bothering me and doing her best stage whisper…which then makes the boy sit up and cry and the whole process starts again. I was getting pretty desperate and hated it because that time was stressful, I’d often shout at Bubba to leave me alone (which I never want to do) and well it just wasn’t nice.

So I hit Facebook with a plea and got some great ideas back; to use the ipad and have special games that Bubba could only plat at that time, this worked sometimes and not others as she wouldn’t always want to go on it (especially if she’d play on it earlier in the day), another suggestion was the quiet time box which when it got to it we didn’t have to use because the boy started going to bed later, we hit the summer holidays which meant daddy was home earlier and could take charge of one of the kids and I’d look after the other.

But now we have the early morning wake up – usually from around 5.45am Bubba will march into our room and want to chat, wiggle around, ask to go downstairs and just generally do her best to keep us awake. I started sending her back to her room to play but as it’s all stuff she sees regularly it didn’t hold that much allure so I’ve introduced the ‘Please stay in your room and be quiet for at least 15 more minutes. Please! Box’ or the niftier title ‘Quiet Time Box’ so without further rambling and a thanks to Kay (waves at Kay for the suggestion), here is the contents of our box…

I’m hoping to mix this up every week so it stays fresh and my main concern is that it’s quiet toys and games that she can do on her own preferably. To start with we are keeping it in our room so she can’t pillage it at other times (and plus there is nothing like the unobtainable box of goodies to peak her interest) .

First up is some Poundland tat in the form of a fishing game that Bubba is quite taken with at the moment.

I’ve added a wipe clean alphabet board because she loves a bit of writing now and practising her writing. A chalk board and a white board so she can do drawing.

We have stickers…everyone loves stickers and it’s the most quiet she ever is.

A book just because she loves them (and I’m an Usborne at Home Organiser…more on that another day) so we have access to lots of wonderful and educational books.

I’ve gone old school and added my old Discman as well because Bubba has recently got into listening to music with earphones in. It’s possibly the cutest thing to watch her bopping away, singing badly out of tune and then shouting at me because she can’t hear how loud her little voice is (perhaps that isn’t the best idea for quiet time) but if she takes it back to her room…you never know.

I’m hoping this will work, I don’t want her to stay in her room forever and sometimes the extra early start is helpful to get me going on a work day but at 5.30am – 5.45am it’s all a bit painful for my brain.

10 Aug 2015

This Girl

With whispy blonde hair that explodes around her face. Curls that spring up when she gets hot and tangle together after another day of adventure. Never tidy and any attempt to tame it fails, with bunches that always get dragged out as soon as they are put in.

Those eyes that twinkle when she's being cheeky. Blue orbs with brown flecks that look up pleadingly at me when she wants something. They cloud over when she's sad and widen when she is amazed and they are the eyes I scan a room for, the only eyes I need to meet mine.

A smile that twitches at the corners and let's out a girlish giggle when something amuses her. Words tumble out randomly and constantly, testing her voice out on the world. Amazing us all with big words and complex thoughts that show her sensitivity and cleverness.

Hands that are small and delicate, that reach out for me and want to hold my hand. They fit perfectly into mine and fingers twitch with activity the whole time. They twirl strands of messy hair round and round. They clap with glee at something learnt or discovered, they wipe away tears when the world gets a little too much.

This Girl...amazes me every waking minute...even when she has a grump on...


5 Aug 2015

Sick Day Blues

As a mother you quickly realise you are on call 24/7 for the rest of your life. You become adept at knowing what your child wants or needs at any given time. If they are ill it's usually mummy who is the greatest comfort (well in our house it is) and the one to dish out the love and medicine.

But what happens when you get ill? It's hard not to carry on and be a superwoman, making sure you are there to sort out everyone else's stuff before your own.

I've been struck down myself this week, at first I thought I'd push through it and carry on. My body had other ideas and extreme tiredness and other symptoms left me a weeping and a pained person. So I took a day off work (I only do four hours), I took cub to nursery as usual (I dressed but no hair done and make up on so must of looked a sight). Bubba came with me as she my little shadow and was ever so cute and helpful, then my dad came and picked her up so I could get some sleep.

I'm forever grateful to my parents (& my boss, my dad) for helping me. Even feeling ill, the guilt got me, I should be at work, I should be looking after my own children, I should at least be doing things indoors. Even knowing my children are being well looked after, I felt guilty.

I can't just let it all go and rest, I can't stop feeling guilty and after time spent wishing for quiet time, alone in the house...it almost feels too quiet and I yearn for my babies.

Does everyone feel this way when they get ill? Or do you embrace it fully...

3 Aug 2015

My Boy - 15 Months Old

Some days I can't believe 15 months have passed since my little man arrived, it seems like no time at all and then other days I cannot recall what it was like before he joined our family.

My dad used to say that its not until you have a second child that you realise how unique each little person is and how early their personalities evolve. With Bubba I was just so intent on coping, surviving and negotiating each phase that I thought (or didn't as the case may be) who she was developing into is what all babies are like.

Now I realise that my 15 month old boy isn't a baby and he has very individual thoughts and feelings and he is always ready to express those ideas to me. For instance, he loves to eat and has a very healthy appetite and if he doesn't get food when he wants it then he will let it be known, he cannot wait for it. He also loves a bit of fluff, whether it's a cushion, dressing gown or blanket, once enveloped in it he will visibly relax and enjoy the luxuriousness of it all, it's funny to watch.

Teething has been his nemesis, it really gets him (and us), we are down to the last four and when he has a bad day we all know about it. He goes off his food, gets a rash and finds life hard and doesn't like being separated from me. I also have found it hard going, especially when he is having a bad day and I have to deal with a rumbustious four year old. I've recently had days (or weeks) where I go off for a cry in the kitchen because I'm finding motherhood tough, especially when both children are moaning at me to solve their issues. His sleep is disrupted as well and we are finding it tough getting up in the night so often and sometimes he just wants the comfort of mummy or daddy so it can be a long night of sitting in his room.

Although he has a healthy appetite, he is starting to get picky and suspicious of food I am feeding him. Peas are no longer on the menu and he shuns them completely whilst shaking his head and giving me a withering look.

Tantrums are a normal part of our lives now and Bubba's were few and far between until she got a lot older but my boy, he will cry and drop to the floor and roll around like an injured footballer at every opportunity. Anything and everything can set him off and if it wasn't so stressful I would laugh it off because he looks very sweet.

We now have a walker and it was only last week I realised he no longer crawls anywhere. He does love to be carried by me still and when I collect him from nursery he refuses to walk at all. I can't complain because I do love a cuddle with him and he's got to the stage where he is normally wriggly and trying to escape me. He is also talking more as well, current words are 'yesh' 'hiya' 'bye' and he just shakes his head for 'no' and points and moans if he wants something.

It's amazing how much he understands now and if you ask him to sit he will, he goes to the front door if you tell him we are going out and he'll also tidy up things as he goes past them - often putting things on shelves, in cupboards and out of sight.

There is more pushing and shoving with his sister now and although they do get on well together most of the time, they are already both good at winding each other up. Sometimes he will purposely take something she wants and triumphantly smiles to himself and has a cheeky laugh.

Cub has a wonderful way about  him and you can see he has a cheeky chappy attitude, I just can't wait to see the little boy he becomes.
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