Saturday 30 May 2015

My Captured Moment #19

My Captured Moment this week is a group of photos from when we were walking around Westonbirt last week. The weather hadn't been too great but we needed to get out, so we wrapped up as it was rather chilly and off we set.
Finley rode his bike while Noah ran wild. Finley has a little bit of an obsession with Dandelions and blowing them. He wants to stop at every opportunity he can when we see them. Half way round the route we were taking there was a section of high grass that was full of dandelions. We all stopped and Finley taught Noah how to blow them. It took a few attempts as Noah tried to eat them at first but they both had so much fun. And the way Noah looked at Finley when he picked him some dandelions was heart melting. The effort they put into blowing the dandelions was adorable.
It's the little things that make such a normal walk so special.

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Wednesday 27 May 2015

Wicked Wednesdays #19

There seems to be a reoccurring theme to my Wicked Wednesdays, they are all of my youngest son Noah lol!!


A very big decision

We did something today that we have been talking about for a while. Or I have been talking about and my husband has been dismissing the idea. We got the house valued. Last week I took the leap and called the Estate Agents, then told my husband lol! They're booked in for yesterday and today.
We have been here for nearly 8 years. This is our first house. Where we bought both our sons home to. They took their first steps here. We've laughed and cried here. We have had good and bad times in this house. So many memories. I love this house so much. We have made it our home and its a safe place for the whole family. And friends come here and feel at home. But we need to take the next step as a family and start our next chapter.
My husband grew up in a little town about 6 miles from where we live now and he loves it there. He has such fond memories and over the years I have made friends from the town, one being my very best friend, and it has started to feel like a place I could call home. He talks so fondly of his childhood and that is what I want so much for our boys. The reason we didn't buy a house there 8 years ago was because house prices were just too high for us.
Now after living here for so long and doing the house up by updating the bathrooms and other features in the house we hoped we had made some money which would mean we could all move back to the place my husband grew up.
Another big reason is the school and preschool. There is one main school in the town which I love the thought of. Where we live at the minute there are so many. The school in this little town is amazing! It looks fantastic and everybody raves about it. The Ofsted in great too. The boys would also start school with children they have grown up with as we have friends with children that would go there.
The other reason that prompted all of this was support with the boys. My husband works long hours and both our parents live about an hour away. So when we have a doctors appointment with one of the boys or a meeting I need to attend, I have no one to ask to watch the boys for me. And last week I had a meeting to go to, which the boys had to come along to. This in turn meant I didn't actually get to sit down at the meeting or know anything that was said at the meeting! I feel so alone at times where we are. And I know if we move then I will have my friends and some family to help us out if we ever needed them.
I'd be close enough to pop into a friends for a cup of tea and a chat. People could also just pop into us. We could have BBQ's and people wouldn't need to get in the car to get to us.
I will also be a little closer to my Mum and Nan. These are two of the people I miss the most. I know if we were closer we would see so much more of them.
So we had the first Estate Agent come round yesterday. He said all the right things and we got the valuation we had hoped for. This made me feel quite emotional. I wanted that news but then deep down if it hadn't been the right figure I think I would have been ok with it. Now we have to wait for the second estate agent tomorrow and then we will make a decision.
I need to put my love for this house aside and think of my family. A move has many more pros than cons. The boys would get so much out of it. They will see their friends more and when they go to school the children that live around us will also go to that school.
We made this house a home but its only bricks and mortar and we will make our next house a home. And we will make it a beautiful home for our boys.

And the red door - I adore the red door!!

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Monday 25 May 2015

Running has changed me - for the better

This time last year I would never have been saying that I had been for a run, let alone running a 10k Race for Life next Saturday. The thought of running has always appealed to me but I had never been, well I had but I had ran for about 10 minutes and this to me was an achievement. After a 10 minute run I would be complaining my legs were hurting and that my ankle ached, looking back now I had been running in normal trainers and was very unprepared so I'm not surprised I felt terrible after a run lol.
But last year after I lost some weight after doing the slim fast, I wanted to do some sort of exercise. I knew joining the gym was not an option as I wouldn't go as I'd make an excuse of being tired or not having time. I also loved the idea of an exercise class but they were at times that didn't fit in with our family life and with no family around to have the boys while went this was out of the question. So running it was.
I went to a sports shop and bought some trainers. My husband laughed! Well anyone that knew me would have laughed if they had known, apart from my Mother in Law who is always very supportive of even the silliest things I do (best Mother in Law in the world!). I was not known for exercising. I had starting walking lots while doing the slim fast but this is as far as my fitness went. But I needed to do something, for me as if I'm perfectly honest I wasn't happy with myself.
So with my shiny new running trainers and running gear (purchased from Sainsbury's!) I went for my first proper run. And oh my, I can remember how hard it was. But I think the fact I was determined made me push through.
Over the next few months I ran once or twice a week and started to increase my distance. I always ran with my iPhone as music helped keep me going. I also always used MapMyRun which is an app on the iPhone. It is great and tracks how far you run and you pace. This was fab as I could see over the months that my pace was increasing and that I was running further. I had to purchase an armband for my iPhone from Amazon as I was getting fed up of running and trying to find places to put my phone, in my bra wasn't the best place lol!!
Then at the start of this year I decided to sign up to an actual race. I chose the Race for Life as it is such an amazing charity and the atmosphere at these races are fab. I ran a Race for Life 5k years and years ago. It was at an airfield and if I'm honest was such a boring run as there was nothing to look at. You just ran around the runway. But rather than choosing the 5k which would have been manageable this year and I could have done with ease with training I decided sign up to do the 10k!
So I started training. I went from 5k to 7k within a few weeks and then all of a sudden decided that I was going to run 10k!! I pushed myself and it was to much. I ached so much. I ran on the morning of the day I was going out with some friends in the evening. Well I hobbled my way from bar to bar as my legs were so painful! Such a great look!!
But then after a week of rest I decided to do it again and I have done every Saturday since. And the more I did it the easier it got. But still now the last 2k is the hardest. I have ran 10k 7 times now.
After run face :-)
I need to have a route pre planned because I need to know where I'm going and how far I have left to go in my mind. The good thing about MapMyRun is that it tells you every kilometre that you have run and your time. The runs I enjoy more are the ones that I pace myself and don't race to try and beat a time.
So next week I'm running with some inspirational ladies and running for an amazing cause. I want to raise as much money as I can but this race is also a great achievement for me. My husband while one holiday described me as a fitness fanatic to someone we had met. This is something he would never have said this time last year and it made me laugh. Because I now love to run and anything to do with fitness. I am so much happier with myself for it, a lot of that I think is because I get time to let off steam. I also still get to eat what I like, keep my weight off and not feel guilty for eating a whole packed of biscuits in one sitting. Which happens on a regular basis as I have no willpower.
And since having the boys this is something for me. I love being a mummy and I wouldn't change it for the world but I felt like I was losing my identity a bit. So going out for a run and enjoying it give me some me time back. And also I do something other than cooking, cleaning and looking after my little loves.

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Saturday 23 May 2015

HappyDays #3

This week has been a strange one as preschool was closed due to staff sickness so our normal routine was all thrown out. But this wasn't a bad thing as I got to spend more time with my eldest which was great, yet stressful! So here is my week.
Out & About
The weather wasn't great at the start of the week but we still managed to have a few days in the outdoors. And honestly haven't spent that much time at home. On Tuesday we went to Westonbirt Arboretum. It was sunny when we left home but by the time we got there it had changed to rain showers between the sun. But we had the best time the three of us. Wednesday we had to go shopping for my Mums birthday present so that got us out for the day, not the most interesting for the boys but needed to be done. Then on Thursday with the sun shining we managed to get to the park with a friend and her little one.

Fun at Home
With the rain dampening things, when we have been home we've been watching Disney films and eating popcorn. The boys are really starting to get into films and what better films than Disney! So when we needed some down time after some crazy charging about the house playing hide and seek, we all sat snuggled on the sofa with a film and some popcorn. We have also been making birthday cards for my Mum. The boys made some lovely cards with a combination of colouring in and stickers. They always seem to get more pen on their hands than on the paper.
Time for Me
On Tuesday I went to my friends open evening of her new nail salon. It is truly gorgeous and she really is such a talented nail technician. There was champagne and cakes. I didn't indulge in the champagne but I did enjoy the yummy cakes. She was doing a nail demonstration and the nails she was doing were beautiful. I also won a gift bag in the raffle! It was lovely to have some me time and to catch up with some friends.

My Happiest Moment

My happiest moment this week is one I hope doesn't annoy people as I know people don't like to hear about toilet activity but Noah did a wee on the toilet before bath time. And I am so proud! He is to young at 22 months to start potty training, I hope haha, but he wanted to sit on the toilet like his big brother. So I let him and he did a wee. Not sure if he knew he had done one but I gave him lots of praise, hugs and kisses.

Next week I would like to....

Do some crafty bits and pieces with the boys at home. As its half term, lots of places will be busy so I think we will have a week of chilling at home. So to make sure the boys don't get bored we will try and do painting, playdoh and crafts - everything I am not that great at!

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Friday 22 May 2015


So this week Preschool was closed due to staff sickness and not having enough staff to cover and no bank staff to take over. Which meant Finley would be home all day Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and then the whole of next week as its half term. This put the fear of god into me lol!! But with recent events and me feeling rather protective and wanting to spend all my time with them, this was the perfect opportunity to do so.

On Tuesday I took the boys off to Westonbirt Arboretum. It was just us three and it was lovely. Having some special time with the two of them and them getting my full attention. We picked dandelion's and blew dandelion clocks, took selfies and had lunch together in the café.

Then on Wednesday, Finley had been due at preschool and I'd planned to go shopping just with Noah for my Mums birthday present, we all went shopping with a friend and her little girl. Yes it was little stressful as they don't like shopping, but we chose my mums present together and enjoyed a McDonalds.

Thursday we enjoyed the park in the sun and then had lunch at a friends house where the boys got to play with their best friend. And today we have had my Mums dog come to stay for the weekend so we have been on a lovely long walk with Mikey and Finley on the bike.

So this week has all been about the three of us and enjoying some time together without the restraints of preschool dropping off and picking up times. And not having to worry about getting dressed and chilling in our pyjamas. So even though we are a family of four, the week days have all been about the three of us.
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Our visit to the Steam Museum

Both my boys are obsessed with trains. I mean totally obsessed as we have the Thomas die cast trains down stairs with some take and play track, and then upstairs they have a wooden train set in Finley's bedroom. And it is without fail that either or both of these will get played with everyday. On our preschool journey we go under a train bridge which most days have 2 or 3 trains going over it to and from preschool. And they boys screech with excitement with every train that goes over.

So last Saturday we had a family day planned but we weren't too sure of the weather and what to do with the boys. My husband suggested the Steam Museum which is about 20 minutes away in a local town. We have been there once before but when Noah was a baby so Finley would only have been 2 and loved it but not so interested in them as he is now. This sounded like a great idea as it was indoor so if it rained it wouldn't ruin our plans.

We got there about 11 and the boys were so excited. They both had chosen two die cast trains each to take along with them and Finley was adamant he was going to see Thomas. We had explained there would be Thomas like trains but the actual Thomas may not be there. We went to pay and for an extra £10 we could get a family annual pass. So even if we only came one more time in the next year it would be worth it.

You go through the entrance to the museum and there are the most impressive wax works and displays. The boys were in awe of these 'pretend' people and Noah even had a little chat with a few. Along the way there are a few things for children (even adults) to stop and do, such a build a waggon with wooden nuts and bolts and they could also turn some handles of some old train machinery.

It is a great place as there is so much for them to see they don't get bored. Once you have seen all of the displays and history of the train lines you get to the trains. Now this is the part the boys were in their element. They could walk under trains, climb into trains, move leavers on the trains and so much more. One of the first trains we got to was a ride on Thomas! Finley was very pleased to tell me 'I told you he would be here!' So after they had had a ride we got to explore all the different trains.

Noah wasn't really in the best of moods that day so he was very temperamental! Haha, so we had a few tantrums and tears but here is one I caught on camera when he didn't want a photo with Daddy by the train.

Half way round there was a signal box where they had a couple of retired train drivers that were showing people how to use the leavers and move the trains to let other trains pass. Finley had a go and absolutely loved it. He even got a certificate afterwards. We had one very proud 3 year old.
There is also a play area for the children with a wooden train track, duplo, books about trains, a drawing station and lots of wooden pieces for them to make things such as a bridge.
From here we got onto more trains and saw more wax works in an old fashioned station platform.
After spending a good 2 hours here we were all pretty hungry. We headed out and into Pizza Express. We were all starving and once we had all eaten we headed home. The boys were so tired from all the running around of the trains they were out for the count within seconds!

I would totally recommend a place like this for toddlers as there is so much to do and it is pretty impressive for adults too.

*This is not a review*

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