Saturday, 31 January 2015

{Family Days 2015} - Bowling

Nearly a couple of weeks ago now our little boy turned one. His actual birthday we didn't do much, as Yve's still had preschool, we attended playgroup went home to relax before picking her up again to come home and open a couple of presents as she was itching to help her little brother celebrate as was Halle. We also had a lot of family visitors around and Daddy returned home from work at the usual time so it was all a bit rushed & a 'normal' day for us really. We of course made sure we sang a happy birthday to our little  chap & made him feel all excited but we wanted to make sure that we spent time just us five, focusing on 'us time' and also celebrating the fact that our little boy is now one, (Sob).

I couldn't help but feel extremely guilty (I also shed a few tears) over the fact that I hadn't arranged a proper first birthday like I did with both the girls. I think the time of year is difficult as the weather is mostly dreary, It would probably only be family members as he hasn't made any 'proper friends' yet like Yve's did as My friends had babies at the same time, then Halle befriended them, so it's a bit different this time around. I wanted to do a tea party back at ours on Sunday but we had another family event planned too so January has been such a hectic month. 

So yesterday, we went bowling for the first time as a family in our home town (the only other times we've been were at holiday camps!) It was lovely to see the girls all excited, but it was also a bit confusing for them I think as they automatically thought we were back on holiday. Yve's was a little upset that we had a limited time slot and had to go home once the game had finished, but we let them have a go in the arcade quick before just doing that. It was a nice evening, even though we had some tears due to Yve's dropping one on her foot! She was determined to get the bright shiny orange one everytime even though I tried to explain that it happened to be the biggest one there with XXL printed on it! She was brave and luckily no broken foot!

Halle was just in her element, loving the slushy drinks and waiting for 'uptown funk' to come on the music system, Phoenix was wanting to crawl, or cruise up the bowling lanes, he did enjoy a supervised bowl with Daddy though! 

Little outings like these are very ordinary and ever so eventful in more ways than one, especially with three little ones under the age of 4 and a half ;) lovely evening nonetheless.

The lighting was so poor and dark, so these are the only shots that came out ok!

Lets get started!

Daddy will help you

I will pretend that I won.... :)

Same expressions


Sad that she dropped a bowling pin on her foot!

Bonkers girl

Changed his mind on the slushies he kept attacking!

Phoenix's turn

Getting there

Helping hand

Safe place



Me and Mine: A Family Portrait Project 2015 - January

I know this is kind of cheating, as its not one photograph of all 5 of us together, I thought we had taken some, but sadly I was wrong! So instead for January, I wanted to share some images of us in pairs, or threes etc, enjoying out time together, honestly and to the full. Enjoying bowling together, a NYE glass of bubbly together, Making cheese & grapes snacks together, the oh so glamorous 'front door' pose before nipping out, and walks around the shops together, and waiting for the girls to finish dance class - together in some format, whether its the two of us, three, four or five.

I know they're not the best quality, all iphone snaps but still some beautiful memories for us.

And to clarify - we've already got February's planned! :)

dear beautiful

Friday, 30 January 2015

Loving the little things 2015 - 5/52

I can't believe it's nearly the end of January already, it's special month for us now as our little boy celebrates his birthday on the 29th! This year is his first birthday as I just love that we now have an extra special meaning for this usual gloomy month!

Here's my little loves this past week...


I've really needed comforting words this week. Pretty illustrations are always a bonus wonderful thing too. 

The girls are loving this story at the moment 'Whatever next', it's one of my favourites too and a wonderful bargain for 50p from the charity shop.


Not a programme, but something even better. I watched my baby boy open his presents for his first birthday.


My lovely cosy coat, it's so snuggly an also very glam.

I am loving their styles.


'Happy Birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Phoenix, happy birthday to you'


I was so proud when Yve's came running out of the pre-school door with these in her hands saying "I made jam tarts & decorated the plate! I thought we could all eat them for family pudding tonight"

I absolutely love this stuff... if you like rice crispie cakes you'll love this twist. I'm featuring them on my new little project...coming soon!

Cinnamon spiced latte & shortbread just for good measure.

And lastly, with each of my children's birthdays, I love to make the effort of making a cake, saves money and it's also better being 'home made' with more thought, especially as the girls love to help out these days! Here's our creation for little chaps birthday. 


It's going to be very hectic around here over the next few weeks. 
Mr turns the big 3-0, then it's valentines, then we're potentially moving to our new home, then I go on a sewing course, then we're off on our first holiday in March! phew!  

Thanks for reading, I love you're comments!

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Thursday, 29 January 2015

Happy first birthday Phoenix!

Happy first birthday to my koala bear baby.

From the moment I found out we were expecting baby number three, I was so excited. I had feelings of worry as I didn't know how it was going to effect the girls, but feeling you kick my tummy, and talking to you lots in the womb & especially when you arrived - they loved you from the start. Your birth was such an amazing experience. Not only was it so positive but out of the three, I definitely felt the most relaxed, and in tune with myself. I think empowered in the word. I just really can't believe that it was a year a go today that you blessed us with your safe arrival.

Your first week of life we had some amazing family photos done which I will treasure forever. I look back at those and just can't believe my eyes how much you've changed. With all the change, I can still see such similarities, like the little frown you have when you're checking people out, the way you love to snuggle so close into me, the chubby cheeks. I sit and cuddle you at bedtime, sniffing your sweet baby smell and it just takes me back to your early days, bliss.

You have always had such a sweet, kissable, gorgeous face, so much so that lots of people mistake you for a girl for having 'pretty girl eyelashes & eyes' - I just reply with, thanks but long eyelashes are for baby boys too, he's just fortunate to have better ones than me!

We had some difficult days with breastfeeding, I just assumed it would all be okay considering you were my third breastfed baby, but I soon realised that not all babies are the same regardless of being siblings. I think it was a mixture of things, but colic symptoms & thrush were the main reasons from around 6-9 weeks of age. we soon after overcome this and reached the 'blissful feeding' stage, I have really enjoyed our bonding journey through breastfeeding, still am. 

You're such a happy baby 99% of the time ( like most babies, teething interrupts this! but even then you are fine as long as you have extra hugs - Mummy's Koala bear baby to be precise!) you cut your first tooth at 7 and a half months old, shortly followed by the second then around ten months you started cutting more, you now have 5 almost 6 teeth popped through! I would say the only thing it has disrupted is your sleep, you've only 'slept through' maybe once or twice since you were born, and it is really exhausting on those nights when you seek more comfort and cuddles, Mummy does feel extremely snappy some mornings after and feel guilty for it, but it's all part of the process. You wont be waking lots forever, and for now I try my best to embrace those disturbed nights with the extra cuddles - even if I do have panda eyes most days!!

 You're so active now since you started attempting to crawl around six months old. You now have the ability to climb up the stairs at lightening speed, you're itching to walk unaided even though you do really well at cruising around the furniture from around nine months old. 

You've been on plenty of adventures, You made your first visit to see Great Nanny Pat at her home in Devon in March, Lots of weekends away and day trips in between (yet to be blogged!) we had our first trip back to Mudeford in November which happened to be your first time there. Plenty of family days out, your first time seeing halloween, & your very first Christmas. 

You have developed so fast it seems unreal, like a dream almost. 

Recently once we've dropped Yve's off to preschool, You Halle & I take a couple of trips a week to some playgroups which you seem to really enjoy. It's lovely to watch you just explore, get messy & learn. You really love the end of each session when it's singing time, as you can now clap your hands, and send massive toothy grins across the room at everyone you see!

Our morning routines can be funny too albeit a bit rushed sometimes, but cute too. You and the girls love to watch 'Little Princess' as I'm getting ready, you'll stand and do a little bopping dance to the intro music! 
You're so funny with you're little noises & expressions. You love to shout Mumma when you want milk, or a snuggle (my koala bear baby), or when you see that Daddy is home, I open the door for you to eagerly wait and whisper Dada. You also have the habit of sometimes talking in your sleep, as I'm right next to you I can hear you instantly "mumma mumma" cute but not so funny in the small hours!

Your birthday falls on a Thursday so we went with our usual routine of dropping Yve's off, doing playgroup and relaxing at home until picking her up again. Daddy had work so we waited for a while to do some more present opening as we didn't want him to miss out. We also had a lot of family visiting through the day who gifted you with some lovely presents, lucky boy!

The girls & I made you a special cake....

You had a fancy balloon - which you consumed a lot of glitter off of! ...

It was getting late, had been along day so we all sang a big happy birthday to our special little chap...

You were mesmerised by the candles. We did more than one so the girls could help blow them out with you, and also because the lighting can be rubbish this time of year, especially with the light off! 
We're going bowling tomorrow evening as our family outing to join with celebration for your birthday, something fun for you all, and the taking you all to a soft play on Sunday morning so you can play as free as birds, I hope you've had a special day my baby boy, you really are such a treasure and I am blessed to have carried you, nurtured you, watched you grown this past year, I'm so happy to have you in my life.

Love you to the stars & beyond.

Mumma xx


Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Life and blogging with a fresh perspective.

I started this blog as a form of therapy at a very difficult time of my life. It helped me to just escape for a while, when I just had little Yve's and was pregnant with Halle, i'd blog about the positives, little trips to the park, crafting at home, the way she made me feel as a mother, to be honest I did write a couple of honest & open posts about some of the low days, I still do, and probably will in the future, as I think they are all a learning curve. but writing about the good helped me see the light.

 You have to experience the bad to appreciate the good even more. If I'd have known more about blogging sooner, then I would've started a lot earlier on, documenting more productively - but,  I am very thankful for all the diary extracts I have in my hand-written personal diaries, all the pictures I've taken, movies I've made still yet to be shared here. I'm definitely going to share some previous things from the dates before I 'officially' started blogging here as I love to write about them and it could potentially help someone else who's needing a lift, some inspiration or simply someone to relate to. So the dates will be a little out. I only started finding the time to put in so much more effort last year. I started to understand and grasp the way of blogging, the technical side, the social side, and the community. A community that I have grown to be so fond of. 

Everyone is so friendly (mostly everyone). 

 I think it's safe to say that I have always loved to write, I love the way you can get things off your chest, talk about what you love, what you're passionate about, things that inspire you, help others, and to just be you, through words & pictures.

I find myself so busy sometimes, pre-school runs, being a home-maker, tidying up, cooking, all the other things that are rolled into Motherhood, including lack of sleep, equalling lack of energy some days.
On top of all of this, I am trying to find a good balance of life. I want to be a better girlfriend, making more of an effort to still live a life with their Daddy aside from just being a parent - without feeling guilty. I do struggle with this as I am hardly ever without my little ones, so for me this is something new, and will take time to adapt to and not feel like a 'bad mum' for it. I want to remember that I matter too, my life as Natalie. To not let my passions take a step back because life just takes over - no matter how much I adore it,
 and some times it just gets too much.

Of course everyone needs their own time, but some days I would set up crafts for the girls, and think "Right, i've set that for them, now I can quickly blog this bit, edit those photos etc.) and then I would be thinking the same thing in the evenings when they're all in bed, it's quite addictive really, in good and bad ways. I know I want to better myself but its just finding the better balance of it all.
Aside from the world of blogging with a new perspective, I want to be there for my children, my partner, myself a bit more instead of trying to do too much. I love my little world of writing my words, but living life is more important. I love the unrehearsed moments when I can really connect with my children, which also reaches a better connection with myself.

So that being said, I am going to continue to write what I love, what fuels me & inspires me.
Doing less, with more focus.

Then theres the comparison.. 'Comparison is the thief of joy'.
I've read before, and it is definitely true. Once you allow yourself to be sucked into a comparison mind-set it's hard to get out. Let's face it we've all been there, I have just come to realise that you will never get anywhere comparing yourself to others successes. Everyone has different lives, different circumstances, talents and so on. I believe the way around this is to feel inspired as opposed to down in the dumps about 'not being a top 100 blogger', 'the best photographer' etc.

I am not going to give in and feel weak by comparisons anymore. 

I felt this way a lot growing up, never sure of myself around others, which led to doubt when I was on my own, suffering in my own little world, wondering who I was.

I want to blog about what fuels me.I am not going to give in and feel weak by comparisons anymore. 
I love to feel inspired, and its a much better feeling than comparing myself to others.

 They are themselves.

And I am me.

Aside from all the seriousness, I find it hard to look at photos of me. But this is who I am, even if I do have a freckle face & have inherited my Dad's nose ;)


Monday, 26 January 2015

Living Arrows 2015 - 4/52

This weekend we spent Saturday afternoon with my sister, 'Auntie Pop'. We popped to my Dads, then headed to watch the Mr play football but have way more fun at the park onthe other side of the pitch. This is one of our local parks and it's so peaceful. I love the giggles we shared, the sisterly conversations Poppi & I had, these images I now have to add to our memories. I love watching my children play happily in the park, the simplicity of swinging contentedly, running free, or simply watching the cloud float by gracefully in the bright blue sky. 

I love bonding time with my family members. 
I can see so much of me in her sometimes, not necessarily how I look now, but how I did as a little girl. And also her personality, her witty sense of humour. 


She's a wild spirit this one

My little Halle, growing so fast.

I had to include this, his face looks so funny where his hat has scrunched it all up.

Sharing a funny moment

Swinging away

"Keep your scarf on please, it's chilly!"

Blue eyes.

How is my Yve's looking so grown up already?

Sharing a funny conversation with Auntie Poppi


Staring deeply at his big sisters

This last image I love as I want my little ones to remember me getting in & enjoying the moment too, and not just being 'Mummy who's stuck behind the lens' no matter how self conscious I may feel the majority of the time. Us mothers need this too. 

Yes that is a sick stain on my arm from Phoenix a few hours earlier - Keeping it real.

A little phone snap of Phoenix (and me!) enjoying the zipwire! 

Here's my favourite images from this week's 'Living Arrows'. Hosted by Hayley at Shutterflies.

Living Arrows
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