Tuesday 31 January 2012

Defining moments of my day...

Defining moments of my day.. the joy of parenthood!

1) Scrabbling around the house like a deranged dog sniffing out a squirrel in an attempt to gather enough change to pay for playgroup.  I had to empty my son's piggy bank for God's sake.  Well, at least it was being spent on him (though I have a feeling the money goes more towards the lovely filter coffee they brew and cakes than on anything else...).  It was a proud moment, me on the floor of Ethan's bedroom, swearing at the piggy bank, breaking my nails to get out a few 50p's...

2) Ethan announcing loudly on the way out of playgroup.  "I have done a poo poo.  My nappy is VERY smelly".  Thank you... you didn't really need to announce it - everyone COULD SMELL IT!

3) Wondering for the 50,000 time WHY, OH WHY did we buy two sofas with freaking UN WASHABLE COVERS?!  I was pregnant when we bought them.. somehow, SOMEHOW, we should have known this was a stupid thing to do.  Oh, the naivety of those without children.  I love the sofas.  They are big, comfy and red.  Fab focal points in the living room.  But, how, oh how, I would love to be able to strip them of their covers and sling them in the washing machine.  In stead we have something called a "stain resistant coating" which DOES NOT WORK.  The other wonderful bonus of this "stain resistant coating" is that if you bung it in the wash it will turn into some sort of mushy gel which would render the covers useless and probably break your washing machine into the bargain.  Not something I am going to try.  Which is why at present I have a towel, heated up wheat bag and the entire hardback anniversary addition of Calvin and Hobbes on top of one of my sofa covers in an attempt to dry out a stain without leaving a water mark behind.  Why did we let Ethan drink on the sofa?  I need a bulk load of throws...

4) Overheard from the bathroom just now:
Ethan "there's poo on my towel, Daddy!"
Daddy "Is there?  Where?  I can see a pea..."
Ethan "Yes, the pea is from my bum bum, Daddy"
Daddy "How did it get there?"
Ethan "I threw it out of the bath, my poo poo... I threw it"  "There is poo poo floating in the bath"
Daddy "Oh.  Oh yes.  Oh There is loads of it!"

*jumps out of bath*

I'm glad it wasn't my turn to share the bath with Ethan tonight!

What joys did your day involve?

Trendy Toddler Tuesday - Retro Cool

It's Trendy Toddler Tuesday, held by Little M and his Very Busy Mama.

This week, Ethan is rocking a retro look.  My Mum kept everything from when my brother and I were children.  I mean everything.  All the toys, all the clothes (unless they were ruined).  When I was pregnant, we went through the loft and she even had 30 terry cloth nappies up there still... honestly!  They came in handy for wiping up Ethan's baby sick though.  Anyway, as a result, Ethan gets the chance to wear a lot of our old clothes - mostly my brothers now, I don't think I can quite get away with the dresses on him! (though I do want to buy him a fairy outfit because he wants one!).  OK.  Pics....

So, Ethan is wearing a beautiful top by Duns who are rather like Smafolk and Plastisock with their designs.  It's such a gorgeous top with a city life print on it (bikes, cars, buses, trees, houses etc..)  His dungarees were mine, in around 1985 I presume.  They were hand made in England, Mum thinks it may have been a friend of a friend.  His slippers are rather like Moccis, but are from H&M.  He adores them and gets upset about his "cold feet" if he doesn't have them on!

Ethan tells me he likes this outfit because it's "yellow with tractor and cosy and comfy".  So, there we have it!

Please comment below or tweet me if you're joining in with this meme and I'll be sure to take a look at your post!

Monday 30 January 2012

90 words, 90 bloggers...

I am lucky not to have known cancer directly in my family and friends, but like everyone, I am more than aware of it.  Only a few months ago a friend's Mum was diagnosed with breast cancer.  Luckily, it was caught in the early stages and it seems so far that treatment has been effective.  Which is great.  That's what we want.

My blogging buddy Snoo and Me asked me if I'd heard of the blogging campaign Kate On Thin Ice is running.  She is trying to get 90 bloggers to get 90 words about an important woman in their life to raise awareness of breast cancer and Breakthrough Breast Cancer.  This is an evil illness which affects so many lives that of course I want to get involved and do what I can.

Men - breast cancer can affect you too!  It's not just us ladies.  Whoever you are, remember TLC (and I don't mean the group!) Touch.  Look. Check.

For my 90 words, I am going to write about my Mum.  Obvious it may be, but my Mum is the most influential and important woman in my life, I'm sure!

Mum.  Always working hard, always doing the best she can for me, my brother, all her family and friends.  She was diagnosed with MS in 2004.  It was such a shock.  It meant she had to stop working (a bit issue for someone like her, with her own business).  Despite that, despite the horrible affects of her illness, she has kept on smiling.  Since having Ethan she has been a lifesaver for me, most of all in the early days when we moved in with her and Dad.  She ROCKS.

I just wanted to exercise...

...Is that so much to ask?  In the weeks running up to Christmas, like most of the country, we had one cold after another.  As a result I didn't get to the gym or an exercise class very often.. Maybe once or twice..  Either Ethan was too ill to go in the crèche, or I was too ill, or we'd been up most of the night.  I pay for my membership monthly so it's always annoying when you don't use something you've paid for.  Anyway, getting back into January, I was ready for some exercise.. we get back into the swing of things for a couple of weeks, then last week we were stuck in with colds again. Grrrrrrrrrr.  So, last week, all of us being back to health again, I was itching to get into an exercise class, work up some sweat and enjoy those endorphines. On Wednesday morning, I got myself dressed in my work out clothes, and started thinking about how good I was going to feel post exercise class.  Ahhhh.  And I'd be able to have that cookie later in the day and not feel bad about it! Yes! (that's the best bit, lets face it!).

Right.  It's 10:00AM.  It's time to leave.  Grab Ethan, get his coat on, plonk him in the buggy, push him out the door... ummm.. PUSH HIM OUT THE DOOR. What is this?  SERIOUSLY WHAT THE SOD IS THIS?  The back righthand wheel is literally hanging off.  Oh flipping great.  A massive puncture?  I suppose that massive bramble that got stuck in the wheel the day before was to blame.  That's it.  All that prep and psyching myself up for nothing.  Can't walk there with Ethan, the class would nearly be over by the time we'd get there (you know how toddlers like to dordle and examine EVERY SINGLE THING).  Poo.  Big smelly nappy loads of poo.  Nothing is ever simple when you're a parent, is it?

Sigh.  There really are some days that are sent to try us. The irony is that I ended up eating more cookies due to feeling irritated than I would if I'd gone to by class and felt good about myself.


This week baby I promise...

Again I'm joining in with the lovely Mum of One and her meme.

This week baby I promise... not to blog when you are awake or when I am fully in charge of you (i.e. Daddy is at work so it's just us at home!).

I admit that when I started making a real effort with my blog a couple of weeks ago, it started to eat into our days together, and I don't want that.  I love blogging, but I don't want it to take over my life.  I've got more organised now so I can blog in the evenings and when your Grandparents take you for a bit.  You deserve my full attention (well, let's be honest, it can't always be 100% full attention, there's always the cooking or washing up!).

What do you promise this week?  Pop along to see what Mum of One is promising and to see what others are promising - I will be!  Oh, and don't forget to comment below or tweet me so I know you're joining in!

Sunday 29 January 2012


Weehooo! It's Sunday! Time for the new meme being shared between ActuallyMummy and Mammasaurus.  Quite simply, it's called Sunday Funny or SunFun for short.  All we bloggers have to do is link up with something funny, a video, a photo, a blog post from the past, something our child has said.  Whatever, as long as it's funny!

I've been racking my brains ever since I "overheard" Mammasaurus and ActuallyMummy discussing this on the Love All Blogs live chat... What can I join in with?  There must be something!?  Well, last night, I was faffing around on my laptop and found myself looking at videos of Ethan from late 2009 and I discovered a few gems.  So, please, for your funny bone's delectation, let me introduce to you "Ethan and the garlic".  I hope it may make you chuckle a bit.

ActuallyMummy is holding this week's SunFun so don't forget to head over there to see what everyone is linking up!

Sunday Funny

Saturday 28 January 2012


Happy Saturday folks!  As I'm sure you know, Saturday is Caption Day over at Mammasaurus's blog.  Have a look at my pic below and if you come up with a caption, post it in a comment!  Be sure to let me know if you're joining in and I can come and check out your pic and test my brains for a caption for it!

Thanks for joining in!

Friday 27 January 2012

MP3 Shuffle

I was hanging around on Love All Blogs this morning whilst blogging myself when a blogger I'd not met before asked in the live chat whether anyone fancied taking part in a quick meme.  I thought, why not!  I've already posted today, but this one sounds like fun.  Seasider In The City heard about this on the Radio One breakfast show this morning.  It's a simple concept but surprisingly... surprising!  All you need to do is grab your mp3 player, stick it on shuffle and then tell everyone what you got!  I don't know about you, but I usually only have my iPod on shuffle anyway, it's far more fun.  I have quite eclectic tastes as well, so when I got in my car today and plugged the iPod in, I was intrigued to see what would come up.  This was the result:

1)  Ascot Gavotte - from My Fair Lady.  This is the song sung when they are.. well, at the Ascot Races.. Obviously really.  My Fair Lady was the first musical I was taken to see, for my 7th birthday at the Bristol Hippodrome.  I fell in love with musicals right there.  To this day it remains my favourite musical.  It's on my iPod these days because Ethan discovered it recently and he insists on listening to it on a regular basis.

2) Black Horse & The Cherry Tree - KT Tunstall - a good track, I think the first of hers I downloaded.  Personally my favourite album of hers is her Christmas one!

3) Pretty Fly (for a white guy) - The Offspring.  This song reminds me of being 17, young, silly, doing my A Levels, drinking too much, going out on a school night and snogging men in clubs who I never met again.  Fun!

4) Morning Dreams - Ladyhawke.  I'm glad this song came up.  I've had Ladyhake's album for ages but for some reason never listened to it very much.  This song popping up has reminded me to do that.  A good tune.

5) Valerie - Mark Ronson & Amy Winehouse - it's just a classic really, isn't it.  Though I do have The Zootons version as well.

There we go... I'll tag a few folks now, in case they want to join in!


Comment if you're joininng in! And thanks to Seasider for tagging me!

Stay at home, Mum?

When I'm out, with friends, family, or at a group, I feel like a fantastic Mum.  It's almost like I can see myself through their eyes.  I have a whole different perspective on myself and my abilities.

When I'm at home, I feel like a terrible Mum.  I feel tense.  All I can hear is myself saying "No! Don't do that!" or "Wait a minute, I've just got to hang the washing up".  I feel weighed down by responsibility and imposed upon by my child and my house.  I feel annoyance and anxiety.  I loose all perspective and all sense of self.

When we're out, I'm fun, relaxed and I feel free.  So free.

I love being a Mum.  I don't want a life where I rush out to a job I hate, having to put Ethan in childcare.  I'm happy to call myself a stay at home Mum.  I just struggle with the stay at home aspect...

Thursday 26 January 2012

I'll show you mine...

Hidy-ho gang! Here I am for week two of "I'll show you mine..." my new meme. I was really pleased with how last week went. I had one entry from Mum of One who was happy to flash her fridge at the world. It was lovely to receive a positive response and meet a whole host of bloggers I'd not met before. Let's ramp it up this week, shall we? If I get two bloggers joining in I will be grinning like... well, a mad thing!

So... drum roll...... this week I am showing you my... HANDBAG! If there are any male bloggers reading who wish to join in, please do! You can show off your man bag - I know you have one! Don't be shy!

My handbag is my pride and joy. I am not joking. I love it like my second child. I may even take insurance out on it. To me at least, it is an object of desire and beauty. Soft to the touch, comfortable to wear, practical and gorgeous to boot. I don't mean it's gorgeous to boot with a foot, over a goalpost like a rugby player. No. GET THAT IMAGE OUT OF YOUR HEAD NOW! IF YOU ATTEMPT TO KICK MY BAG I WILL KICK YOU IN THE FOOF.

Ehem. Let me introduce you to MY BEAUTY.

*sigh* Marc Jacobs baby. Soft brown leather. Sometimes I hump it.

Look at the detail.. like heaven isn't it! So buttery you could spread it on toast and beat "I can't believe it's not butter" into the corner.

Just to up the nosey-ness factor, here are the current contents. Cath Kidston coin purse in which I keep... credit cards! My Biiiiiiiig purse holds the money. Jewllery and watch. Lippy. iPod. Mittens. Gloves. Half eaten packet of buttons (Ethan's, honestly!). Antibac hand gel. Nail files. Tissues. Plasters. Chewing gum. Hand cream.

There we go!! Please don't forget that if you do join in, comment below or tweet me so I know and can come and have a nosey. Please also don't forget to link back to my blog in your post, it's very much appreciated! You can pinch my button below if you wish to attach it to your blog.

Thanks for dropping by and I look forward to your posts!

Wednesday 25 January 2012

How to embarrass your child in 3 simple steps..

1) Buy child a keyboard. They are happy. They love playing the demo songs and bashing the keys in a "musical" fashion. Who knows, they may be the next Mozart. All is good.

2) Groove out to the "chooooons" in the style of a drunk over energetic Dad at a wedding disco and allow yourself to be caught on film. Whilst grooving make sure you are in your pjs with bed hair. In no way should you look cool or attractive (props may be given for the Threadless "Rock out with my Cock out" tee which is at the same time funky and appropriate).

3) Upload the video of your "dance". Have no shame. Rest assured that in years to come your child will be jeered at all the way through school for having "the Mum who did that dance".

Simple really! (I have no shame, it is true).

Tuesday 24 January 2012

Trendy Toddler Tuesday

Today for the first time we are joining in with Trendy Toddler Tuesday, a meme which is hosted by Little M over at Mummy's Busy World, a lovely blog I discovered last week.

One of the things I love most about being a Mummy is all the wonderful clothes available for children and babies. I do think to find something different you need to look a little harder, but most shops do have a few more unusual items. My favourite shops in the UK for childrens clothes are H&M, Next and John Lewis, but I am also a fan of finding independant shops that stock a lot of the Scandinavian brands I love. There's also Their Nibs, a UK company who have a very vintage feel and stock the most beautiful Gruffalo PJs.

Anywhoo, onto Trendy Toddler Tuesday. As soon as I heard about this, I knew it would be a good meme for us to join in with! It's a simple idea, all you have to do is post a pic of your toddler in their trendy garb and link up with Little M. If you want to join in I have attached a button to my blog or you can just find them via this blog post.

Here's my pic of Ethan for this week. This is a bit of a random styling, dictated by warmth, comfort (AKA playability) and pattern. I'm sorry it's not a better picture but it's almost impossible to get Ethan to stay still.

In the above Ethan wears;

Shoes: Converse (slightly battered)
Legwarmers: One stripy huggalug and one elk print huggalug
Trousers: Katvig
Top: Plastisock "Peace" print top.

So, dear readers, what are your thoughts on this crazy get up? We like to mix it up in this house! Pattern, colour, it all gets mixed in! If you are joining in with this meme, please let me know and I'll come and see what your little fashion plates are rocking!

Monday 23 January 2012

This week baby I promise...

Good Monday all! Today I'm going to join in with Mum of One's meme "This week baby I promise..." The idea is that we make a promise to our baby or child each week and then link up over at Mum of One's blog. The link is above, or you can grab her button which I have added to my blog (over on the right, the cute teddy bear button).

There are lots of things I'm sure I could improve on as a Mum, so I should have lots of material for this meme. This week it's something simple though.

This week baby I promise... not to chase you around asking for kisses from you so often! I love your kisses Ethan, they are so beautiful and each one I cherish so much. If I could steal them from my lips and pop them into a box to keep forever I would. As it is I try to hold onto them in my mind for as long as I can. However, as I know how beauftiful they are, I should know that they are at their most beautiful when given freely by you, not when demanded by Mummy. I love you. You love me. When you come up to me unexpectedly and kiss me my heart melts. I will try my hardest not to force them from you because I know there will come a day when you will only offer a kiss when it's demanded of you (oh, those awkward teenage years!).

As always, let me know if you are joining in as well and I'll drop by your blog to see what you are promising!

Saturday 21 January 2012


I'm joining in with Saturuday is Caption day hosted by the fab-tastic Mammasaurus .

So folks, in case you don't know the deal, here's what happens. I post a pic and you lovely readers come up with a caption for it which you can post in a comment below! Simple really! All I do then is link back to the Saurus-y one and if you want to do the same, well, you just do as I do!

Here's my pic for today:

Now, please add your captions and then lead over to Mammasaurus to see what everyone else has been up to!! It's what I'm going to do now. Oh, if you comment on mine and do SatCap yourself, please let me know and I'll come and check it out!! Happy Saturday everyone! x

Friday 20 January 2012

My 2011 Highs and Lows Meme

I was tagged yesterday by the lovely MummyConstant in this meme, My 2011 highs & lows (originally by Mum of Three Boys).

1) What was your happiest event?

We had a very busy year last year, full of day trips, weekends away, visits to National Trust properties and holidays. It's very hard to pick one!! I suppose I would pick our stay in Centre Parcs in October. It's become an annual event after going for the first time in 2009. Last year we went with my parents, brother and his girlfriend. It was lovely there being so many of us, so much fun for Ethan. As Ethan was over 2, he really started to get into the swimming pool, loving going on all the slides. It was a lovely family holiday.

2) What was the saddest thing that happened?

We actually had a good year last year. Things were on the up for us, me getting into my stride as a Mummy, coming off my medication and staying off. I don't think anything terribly sad happened to us, only really silly things like favourite mugs breaking.. and that's not sad really! The saddest thing I can think of would be a lady I know loosing a baby. That was terrible and heartbreaking. Truly puts any silly broken mugs into perspective.

3) What was the most unlikely thing to happen that actually went ahead and did?

Truthfully, I would say my blog starting to take off and get a few more hits towards the end of the year!

4) Who let you down?

I'm beginning to think that my 2011 was very smooth and uneventful! We discovered that our guttering was leaking due to the crappy job some dodgy fascia board people did on replacing them.. I guess you could say they let us down! They also turned out to be total A-HOLES.

5) Who supported you?

Husband, parents and parents in law. All fantastic. My friend Lucy is always a great support as well, and my antenatal group are fantastic. We all lean on each other!

6) Tell us one thing you learned

That actually, I'm a pretty good Mummy (well, people tell me so!).

7) Tell us one thing that made you laugh

That is a difficult one!! Well, it is and it isn't. Ethan makes me laugh every single day. He's 2 and a half now and a real funny man. I think that it's his love of noises that makes me laugh the most. If something is broken or goes wrong he says "Mummy, it's broken! Waa waa waa waaaaa!". Always makes me chuckle.

8) Tell us one thing that made you cry

Cutting Ethan's hair for the first time.. I know! How sad.. but until August 2011 Ethan's hair had never been cut (so he was over 2) it looked like this:

And these days, like this:

It did need to be cut because it was getting harder and harder to untangle and was starting to look a bit limp. I love longer hair on little boys though.

9) Tell us three things your child or children did to make you proud

1. Going to the creche at the local gym and overcoming his fear of being without me. It has made me so proud (and sad at the same time) to see him going from being far too upset for me to leave him to running into the creche yelling "Bye Mummy! See you later!". Heartbreaking and wonderful at the same time.
2. His speech. It really came on in leaps and bounds in 2011.
3. Being brave and confident - being the only child (out of 40 or so) at the library Christmas storytime to go up to the front and "help" Father Christmas out of his chair (Father Christmas asked if any of the children would help him get up as he was stuck in his chair...).

10) Tell us one thing that made you proud of yourself

Being slimmer and fitter than ever before, much fitter than pre Ethan!

11) Tell us one challenge you overcame

Getting past the PND and coming off my medication. It was really hard but I think it's been well over 6 months now and I'm doing pretty well, getting back into understanding what normal emotions are!

12) Tell us 3 things you would like to change about your life from 2011

1. Make my blog far more successful (i.e. read and followed more!)
2. Actually make some headway with knitting or crochet
3. Think about having No.2!

There we go! I have to tag some other bloggers now, so...

Thank you for sharing this Meme with me MummyConstant!

Dawn of the HouseWifi..

So, after chatting away on twitter and live chats with other Mummy bloggers yesterday, my addiction to blogging has grown even more... Rather like Snoo and Me and self confessed Mousewife Sarah Miles I am blogging today about how we are all getting rather obsessed with checking our stats and thinking about our blog posts day and night... in fact, earlier this week I was up at 2am with Ethan who was ill and just couldn't get something out of my head. That's when my Tumblr blog comes in really handy. That one is great for quick thoughts and Ethan's outfit of the day posts. If you like you can check that one out here.

I woke in the night (after a dream in which the world ended which was actually quite upsetting because I didn't know where Ethan was in my dream.. woe!) and after I'd got over the dream (and the imagined dog I'd seen standing over me when I woke!!) I couldn't help but think about blogging.... What I was going to write about today, over the weekend, what blog posts I need to write and schedule and what meme's I want to join in with (I'm thinking Trendy Toddler Tuesday over at Mummy's Busy World) Anyway, my mind was buzzing. It's not the first time I've had this problem. For a while now I've kept a notepad on hand at all times in which I can write down blog ideas and sometimes entire blog posts so I can write them up later! My hubby Pete felt bad for me writing in some boring notepad so for Christmas he got me this gorgeous little number in which all my blog ideas go:

That's where the magic happens baby!

What do you, all my fellow bloggers do, when you have your blog ideas? Do you have a notebook, or keep notes in your phones? I wonder if there are any bloggers out there using dictaphones?! (I used to love those things. When I was about 8 I used to "host" my own radio show which I recorded onto dictaphone tapes. It was called Diary and when that got "successful" (in my head that is) I started a second radio show called "Dare the Devil" in which I conducted interviews with made up celebs whilst on roller skates dancing to Hot Chocolate..) sorry, I digress.

So, yes, there are loads of us Mummy bloggers out there as I type, desperately trying to conduct their bloglives whilst not entirely neglecting their children but perhaps not being 100% attentive as they might. Serious though that may sound, let's not beat each other up. It's really not for that long, they are only watching a bit of Cbeebies (or in Ethan's case, Uki on the iPad). I'm sure we'll make it up to them later. Personally we're going to have a warming lunch of jacket spuds and chilli then we'll read some books and go out this afternoon. Probably to a park. Or maybe soft play. I'll make it up to him... I will ;-D*

I'd better go, Ethan's about to stand on the dining room table with the iPad.. we can't afford to replace that!

*No, please, let's not make this about guilt tripping parents, we do it to ourselves enough anyway, and Sarah, I'm so with you on stamping on that baby book!!

Thursday 19 January 2012

I'll show you mine... (new Meme)

So.. I've been trying to decide on a meme to join in with when literally just now in the kitchen I had an idea! I could make up my own one!

Here's the idea - I'm going to call it "I'll show you mine..." and host it every Thursday. The idea is that I'll show you a photo, or a few photos of something belonging to me and then you show yours on your blog, mentioning the meme and my blog in the body of your post so people know where it came from - but don't forget to comment on my blog so I know that you've joined in and so we can all have a good nosey at each others "things" (I mean me specifically, I want to CHECK YOU OUT BABY!).

It'd be lovely if this takes off.. I'll have to think up a button if it does! Who doesn't like having a good look at what other people have..

OK, here goes. Today I'm going to show you my fridge! Well, I was just getting a drink from it when I had the idea so it makes sense.

It's pretty covered in stuff as you can see... photos, fuzzy felt magnets, postcards etc.. Not on the lower level because Ethan tends to eat anything I put there.

Amusing photo of my Dad from the early 70s. Love this photo. So young and carefree... long before I came along!! Hahahaha... And the snake hips comment? Well, come on! He does look a bit snake-hipsy there!

Contents of note include cherry beer - yum! The broken mayo bottle stuck together with tape and an elastic band. Bloody thing jumped out and me and squirted me in very dodgy places. I swear I was getting weird looks that day...

So, there you have it!! Please do join in, I can't wait to see what lurks within your fridges bloggers!

PS, thanks to all who've read and joined in today, it's really made me smile :) I've just made a button, so if you've like to join in, or have enjoyed today, please grab and add to your blog!


Monday 16 January 2012

Sick day..

We had a "sick day" today. We all have colds. Boo etc.. Actually, as colds go, it's not a bad one. Ethan is in pretty good spirits in the daytime, it's the night that's not so good. His cough wakes him up and then he finds it hard to settle without me being in there and holding his hand. Which I don't mind of course. When he's not ill, we have quite strict rules about bedtime routine and not going in to him unless he's crying out, but when he's ill it all goes out the window and I will happily spend hours lying on his bedroom floor holding his hand until he's in a deep sleep. I say happily, that's perhaps not quite the right word, but I'm his Mummy, I want to be there for him. It's just hard at 3am on a cold floor when it's -3 outside!

So, today I decided we wouldn't go to tearless and fearless or story time as we normally do on Mondays, to avoid spreading the germs. This is always a tricky decision to make. Obviously don't want to be that Mum who rocks up to a group happily spreading germs around left, right and centre, leaving snot trails behind. But equally it's hard committing to a day spent at home, just Ethan and I. Not that I don't enjoy spending time with him, I do, but he's two and a half, always on the go and needs a lot of stimulation like all toddlers. So it makes for an intense day!

I actually ended up enjoying it a lot though. Sometimes it is nice to slow down for a bit. I think Ethan enjoys the opportunity to play with all his toys at home for longer than he'd normally be able to on a Monday. I was pleased we didn't rely to heavily on Cbeebies. Not that I'm against that, there are occasions (especially if you are both ill and low on sleep!) that a day of TV is just fine. But it is nice to know that even on a day when both of you are well below 100% you can still enjoy some activities.

We started the day with snuggling on the sofa, but then ramped it up with playdoh which we haven't done in an age! Ethan was really getting into it. Since we last did it, he's really mastered the rolling pin and using cut outs. We actually managed to spend an hour doing that which surprised me. I remember reading something on a forum recently (I think it was on the SuperNanny site) saying something like toddlers of Ethan's age should be able to keep their attention on a craft activity for 15 minutes or so, and I wasn't sure if Ethan could, but this smashed that, so WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

After playdoh Ethan ran around the house with his Trunki (he is mad for that thing!) whilst I cleared up, using my new handheld vax (whoop whoop!). We then watched about 3 million episodes of Uki on YouTube (you don't know who Uki is? You lucky SOB! Well, have a look here. This then led to Ethan telling me every 30 seconds for the rest of the day that "Uki's light goes out when he goes to sleep, he doesn't need it on when he sleeps!". Now, whilst I say I enjoyed today (and I did) I was ready to lynch Uki and his bloody litup antennae thingy by 5pm.

In the afternoon we went out for a stroll (I strolled, Ethan chilled in the buggy whilst singing and talking about bloody Uki). Once home we played with fuzzy felts, drew in thank you cards for Christmas presents, played trains, threw knitted fruit and veg at each other and STOP PRESS Ethan ate fish fingers for his tea! Oh yes, oh yes! I know this is an odd thing to cheer about, but Ethan just won't entertain foods like that. Which is great, but sometimes you want a quick easy meal to make (beyond pasta and sandwiches). So, yes, we ended the day on a good note. After drawing pictures of Mummy as Uki that is.

If you want something really odd to watch, check out Hopla on YouTube. Makes Uki look like a top notch BBC drama..

Sunday 15 January 2012

Sunday Snapshot - 88 miles an hour!

All night long I was dreaming of this baby... namely my Dad making me hide under the bonnet... It was an odd dream, but then I was up half the night with Ethan (cough cough cough, poor little mite can't sleep).

Haynes Motor Museum. Awesome.

Saturday 14 January 2012

Why I love Moccis (good customer service goes a long way!)

I've posted about Moccis before.. (here) . Since I discovered them I've had two pairs, Pete has had two pairs and so has Ethan. They are pricey, but we are usually able to make them last a year so I don't feel it's too much to spend on something you wear every day for a year or so. Plus, they really are the comfiest and safest slippers I've worn (if you've ever slipped up or downstairs in 'slippers' then you'll know what I mean about most types of slippers not being all that safe to wear!).

Now, I have to admit that Ethan currently has a pair of Moccis style slippers from H&M, reason being that his feet grow very fast and I can't afford to pay loads for his slippers. However, once his feet have slowed their growth down a bit I will happily go back to buying from Moccis due to their quality and the amount of choice they have.

I very recently had the opportunity to test the customer service of Moccis. My most recent pair, bought in September 2011 had started to look far more worn than I would have expected. In fact, the leather had split and I could tell that I was going to be in a position to have to replace them far more quickly than I would like to! I visited the Moccis website and contacted them via their 'contact us' page. I explained when I had bought them and how disappointed I was with the quality on this occasion (previous pairs have not done this). I received a personal response in only a few hours:

Hi Alex,

Thank you for your e-mail.

I’m so sorry to hear this! It is not supposed to happen, and I understand your concerns! If it would be OK with you, I would be really happy if you could send these back to us. This so that we can forward them to our factory in Sweden for them to inspect them and see what has gone wrong in production.

Would you be able to do that? Again, I’m so sorry as the quality should be equal on each and every Moccis!

Of course we will also send you a new pair of Moccis to replace these ones. Please let me know your size and choice of design, and the address where to send them, and I will arrange this ASAP.

I was extremely impressed to hear back from them so quickly, and a personal response as well, not a "thank you for your query we will respond to you in the next 24-48 hours" type reply. I was also very happy with the suggestion of a replacement, but also happy enough to send them my faulty pair. They are a business after all and no doubt want to eliminate the possibly of someone trying to blag freebies! I replied quickly saying I was happy to do as requested and posted off my faulty pair receiving a replacement the very next day. Not only a replacement, but I was able to choose a new design (in the months that had passed since my faulty pair had been ordered they had extended the selection of adult Moccis and I was told I could choose any design for my replacement pair!).

I really couldn't be more happy with the customer service at Moccis. Not only do I love their product, their excellent customer service has ensured my future business. Good business sence there Moccis!! There are lot of companies out there that would do well to take a leaf out of your book.. As a result I will continue to buy from you and recommend you to friends and family and anyone reading my blog! I think the only thing they could have done to improve my experience further would have been a freepost label/envelope sent out to me to send back my faulty pair in but that would only be an added bonus really, because let's be honest, they could have told me "tough luck, you've probably been skateboarding in them..." or something similar!!! It cost me less than £2 to send back the faulty pair and now I have brand new ones!

Well done Moccis. Thank you for keeping my feet and my heart warm (especially when it's -3 outside!).

You can buy Moccis here.

Friday 13 January 2012

New Years Resolutions - looking back and looking forward..

I know we're a few days into January now, but I've not really felt up to tackling this topic until now... Around this time last year I made resolutions for 2011. They were to learn to crochet and not to buy any clothes for 6 months. I think I totally failed. Not really a surprise. That always seems to be the way resolutions go. I even tried to keep it simple by only having a few (I believe there was also one to loose the Christmas weight, but that wasn't so much a resolution as a requirement and that was one that I managed just fine). I tried really hard with the crochet. I really did!! But I SUCK SO BADLY AT IT! No matter what, every time I tried I found it difficult and almost impossible. I pretty much got nowhere. The only successful thing to come out of that experiment was the Stitch and Bitch group I got started. I think more bitching went on than stitching went on but at least the other attendees actually made something. I think the most personally successful S&B meeting was when I ditched the wool and grabbed my paints and canvas instead. That little number is now hanging up in my brothers flat. Sometimes it can be best to stick to what you know!!

The thing is, I don't really believe that. It is good to push yourself, however hard it is (and I should know... I really should have gone to the gym this morning, I didn't and now I feel bad about that... plus I really shouldn't have had that kitkat chunky. It was soooo good though). Anyway, as I was saying, it's good to push yourself. So.. onto this years resolutions. I'm going to put the crochet on the back burner for now. But I've got all this wool!!! What should I do with it? I've got an idea...

Resolution No 1: KNIT A SCARF.

Just a basic scarf. Nothing fancy. Surly even I can manage this task? There are plenty of people around me who could teach me. I know more people who can knit than crochet. And just a scarf. One bloody scarf. Who knows, if I succeed there will probably be a lot of scarves being given as Christmas presents this year!

So, that's the woolly resolution dealt with. Next up. This one is hard.

Resolution No 2: WORRY LESS.

I know this. You know this. I am a worrier... an anxious and sometimes even nervous wreck! Really and truly there is nothing that worrying in my life, but I find I spend so much of my day being worried. I have an anxious knot in my stomach more often than hunger pangs (but seeing as I ate that kitkat...). No, all joking aside, I don't want to be such an anxious person. It wasn't so bad when I was on my medication for PND. I honestly don't know now if I've always felt this way or if it's worse since having Ethan. Perhaps it's just a natural state for me. I probably could do with some sort of CBT or counselling. I'm not sure if that will happen. For now, I'm just trying to be aware of myself, when I'm feeling wound up or I can feel that anxious knot and trying to rationalise why and do some deep breathing. It's helping a bit so far!

So! Those are my two resolutions for this year. I think they are pretty achievable. I'm not expecting to become someone who never worries, just someone who isn't an anxious wreck all the time! (not that many people would know that, I'm quite good at hiding it!).

Tuesday 10 January 2012

Mothers little helper

Interpret the title as you will. Today I applaud sellotape and scissors. Fixing what your little helper likes to break since... A long time anyway!

All hail the bodge job.

Monday 9 January 2012

Suck it up baby!

My life is going to change! Drastically!! We FINALLY got a hand held vac. Hurray! I've been after one for years now. Since Ethan came along there is a lot more mess. It just follows children around. Snacks, meal times, disintegrating nappies (yes, that does happen, especially if, like us, you try and eke out as many hours wear as you possibly can out of one nappy. Those little gel crystals are amazing but are a real bugger to clean up if a nappy collapses! They are like little bean bag beans of pee), mud, gravel... the list is endless. If you have followed my blog for a while or know me in The Real World TM. then you'll know that I am a tidy freak. I am forever going around picking up tiny specks of dirt or fluff from the floors in our house. This vac is going to make my life so much easier! Ethan eats at the living room table which is on carpet. I always put some oil cloth material on the floor underneath where he eats but crumbs still get around. All I'll have to do now is grab my handy little vac and they will be gone. I seriously cannot express how excited I am!

How sad this is... These days it's all about what makes your life easier though. And just think how handy it's going to be for the car!! I'm tempted to go out there now and whiz it around the foot-wells.. but it's 10PM and it's pitch black out there.. so maybe not. I'm not that excited. Plus I have popcorn to eat.

Want to see a pic of my new BFF?

There she is. A thing of beauty, non? Gator! Sounds like she means business... I'm going to snap up your crumbs! Om nom nom....

Err... OK. I have problems. I am a sucker for anything sucky!

Sunday 8 January 2012

Sunday Snapshot

I'm very quiet blog wise at the moment.. my apologies. Christmas was manic and I'm only just now starting to get back into the swing of things. I got a new phone recently so to make blogging easier I've signed up to tumblr, so now have a blog there. That doesn't mean the end of this one. The tumblr one will be for outfit photos, things I see out and about, quick random thoughts etc. This one I will keep for longer posts and ramblings. You can find the tumblr one at http://babymeandfashion.tumblr.com/

Back to the snapshot. Although it is still a long way off no doubt (despite the appearance of Daffodils!) today it felt a bit like Spring was in the air. Pete and Ethan got out into the garden, spent some time clearing and cutting (Pete) and kicking (Ethan).

Looking forward to some sunshine now...

Sunday 1 January 2012

Sunday Snapshot - Happy New Year!

Happy 2012 everyone! I've been a bit quite blog wise over Christmas due to being busy and not being able to get my laptop to go online.. I'm back now!

This was Pete and Ethan today, lego building! I think Pete was more into it than Ethan...