We love Belle & Boo. The drawings make us feel all happy and nostalgic and every single thing that lovely little company produces is totally beautiful! So we are very happy (and a bit jealous!) to say that we have a very special treat for you. One lucky person gets to WIN a fantastic big bundle of goodies from Belle and Boo just in time for Christmas. This is quite possibly the best giveaway we’ve ever had!
Last year we thought we’d start a little Christmas tradition of taking the kids ice skating – and it was an utter disaster. The second Harper’s skates touched the ice, she wanted to get off, but we had to complete a lap as you can only go in one direction – and once you’re on, you’re on. She let go of her skating aid, Magnus the Penguin, within seconds, so we were left trying to simply keep her upright and not lose any fingers. So I was understandably apprehensive about trying again this year. Luckily, all she seemed to remember from last year was that she got a gingerbread man in the cafe at the end, so she was up for giving it another whirl.
I find it very hard to pull myself – and my kids – out into the cold at this time of year. It’s so easy to spend a day snuggled up with a duvet and hot chocolate and a whole heap of Disney. But we forced ourselves out this weekend to Wilderness Wood (near Uckfield) and I’m very happy we did because it turned into one of the loveliest days out. It’s such a beautiful place, full of fresh air, nature and wintry magic.
Back in the Spring, we had a trip out to Kew Gardens to see the cherry blossom trees, and vowed to go back to see what it looked like in Autumn. We made the trip recently and we were not disappointed.
The trip wasn’t wildly successful as both kids basically just wanted to have a snack or sit in the single buggy we took with us, so we didn’t get to explore as much as we were hoping to. We did see a little part of the grounds in-between mini meltdowns over ice creams, grapes and… well, you name it really!
So a while ago, before coat-wearing weather was truly upon us, we took a family trip to Bodiam Castle. We’ve been kinda busy of late with work and other commitments so it’s taken a little while to sort these photos out. When we’ve got a free weekend we seem to venture out to a National Trust place, at least while the weather was warm enough, and this one has to be a new favourite.
This week has been so busy! Usually our worky things get spread out a little bit but this week, er, nope. All whacked together in one jam-packed half term week. It’s been fun, hectic and tiring in equal measures.
We began the week doing a day of baking for our next craft book… the theme of which we won’t say but there might be a little clue in the pics if you’re clever enough to work it out :-). Luckily we only had Grayson around to help us out who spent the whole day trying to climb on the table (where the cake was) and say “ARRGH”. He wasn’t much of a help decorating biscuits.
As a family, we’ve not all been together for long enough to have many traditions, but a few are slowly emerging. Trying to get Harper on ice skates each winter is one (not too successful so far) and getting a photo of her on Santa’s knee is another (some attempts are better than others). But there is one tradition that’s been fixed in place since she was born – going to a pick-your-own farm at the start of the summer for strawberries, and then again at the start of autumn for pumpkins.
We quite often find ourselves venturing out to a National Trust place of a weekend when we’ve not got a swimming lesson, a birthday party or any work planned, and our favourite by far is Wakehurst Place. It’s a bit of a drive from Brighton, which inevitably means the kids are mega grumpy when we get there as they’ve napped in the car, but it’s well worth the moody mini ones.
Hoorah! Our 4th book is out to buy today. We’re so happy it’s out, we’ve been really excited about it for months. The Big Book of 100 Little Activities is jam packed with tons of little things for you to do and make with your kids. Rainy days, bored days, crafty days, sunny days… just lots of projects to keep fidgety fingers entertained. All of them simple and quick and most using things you’ll have round your house.
A couple of weekends ago, when we realised the sun would (probably) be shining, possibly for the last time all year, we decided to do a last minute camping trip in a bell tent in Dorset. We’ve never been in a bell tent before and, to be honest I’ve been put off in the past because they usually charge the same as a decent hotel. I still do kind of think that, but it was fun and the kids had a total blast.
Last weekend Harper and I did a first – we ran the Brighton Color Run together. It’s a 5km race where you get showered in powder paint on your way around the course.
I’ve got a long history of running, starting when I was 16 and was working on the reception of my local gym. I’ve run everything from 5kms to marathons, and going for a run keeps me on the right side of sane.
Yep. That’s right. We’re bad mums. Rubbish mums. Every day is a mystery, we have no clue what we’re doing 70% of the time and not a single day goes past when we don’t think we’ve handled a situation terribly, felt guilty about something or just decided we suck at this.
We’re writing this at 11.11pm and it’s probably the huge amount of pic ‘n’ mix we’ve just eaten but we wanted to write this down because we probably aren’t alone in feeling like bad mothers. So we’re sharing our thoughts and we’re saying its okay to feel like you are rubbish at this sometimes.
I think I may have found my happy place… Croyde in north Devon. If you’ve not been then I urge you to go. Actually, don’t go, as then there’ll be less room on the beach!
We went camping with friends over the Bank Holiday. Camping has never been something I thought I’d like. I only went once as a child with the girl guides, when everyone in the four-person tent I was in got food poisoning – I still have vivid memories of us all throwing up rice everywhere (sorry if you’re eating your breakfast). We were so ill we had to go home early.
In our top ten list of moments that have excited us beyond all levels of uncool, being asked if we’d like to go on a couple of days out for Cath Kidston jumped straight in at number 1. We’ve been working hard on our books this summer and it felt like a little gemstone of loveliness to finish the holidays. We went to Fishers farm for some Pony riding, and to The Natural History Museum to get up close to some scary dinos. Here are some of our favourite snaps – head over to Cath’s lovely blog (dino and pony) to see more.