25 January 2015

Broody, me?

I've said numerous times that baby number two is not on the cards for us yet.  We would love another small person to add to our family but it's just not going to happen anytime soon. First and foremost we simply don't have enough space in our two bed apartment for another person, let alone a baby and all the paraphernalia that they come with.  Secondly I just haven't felt like I'm at that place yet. I've had no feelings of broodiness, Luca quite simply fills me with joy every single minute I'm with him and I love the time we spend together and honestly don't want to miss out on a moment of it.  He's at a wonderful age and I'm enjoying it.  I don't feel like I need another just yet. But.... 

A few days before Christmas, our latest addition to the family arrived.  A little pink bundle of joy called Elsie who takes the niece count up to 4!! We met her when she was just 12 days old and I was overwhelmed with broodiness. Uh oh! 

I put it down to a few things, mostly though, I put it down to this little lady taking her time to come.  She has been about 7 years in the making for my sister-in-law and her partner and so she feels a little bit special.  It could even have been because she was looking adorable in all her pink girly clothes when I'm surrounded by cars and pirates and general masculinity too (not something that's ever bothered me before, I'm a bit of a tom boy at heart).  

19 January 2015

A magical Christmas!

This year our Christmas was truly magical. Luca really got the whole Father Christmas thing and we could feel his excitement growing with every opening of his advent calendar drawers. I did my absolute best to feed this excitement with a special calendar that we painted and told him that every night one of Santas elves would come and leave him something in the next drawer.  
Helping to decorate the advent calendar
We had all sorts, from plain old gold coins or a Christmas themed happy land figure to making gingerbread men and decorating baubles as well as Christmassy days out. 

Christmas Eve was better than Christmas Day itself for me. When we got back from visiting Ant's parents (for our first round of present opening) the elves had left Luca an extra note. It directed him to his bedroom where a box was sat waiting on his bed. In it were some Olaf pj's, a new dressing gown, a "Santa please stop here" sign, some reindeer food and The Night Before Christmas book.  Before we even had chance to explain to him what was going on, Luca exclaimed that we must leave Santa a biscuit and some milk and take reindeer food and a carrot downstairs for Rudolph.  He was in his new pj's and wrapped in his dressing gown in seconds.  His excitement was so contagious and as he propped Rudolph's carrot up against his sign I felt tears spring to my eyes. Happy tears, tears of joy and pride. Tears of contentment and a feeling of belonging. Belonging to the two men in my life, my wonderful husband and amazing son, both of whom make my every day that much better by just being a part of it. I couldn't be any happier with our little life at the moment and seeing Luca's face light up as he carefully placed that carrot down for Rudolph, assured me that we are raising a very happy little boy. 

16 January 2015

The nappies are off!

Growing up too quickly!
The week before I broke up for Christmas Luca told me he didn't want to wear a nappy, instead he wanted to wear big boy pants like Daddy. 

I've never pushed toilet training on Luca. We've gone completely at his pace as I didn't want it to be something stressful for either of us. He was right though, it felt like a good time to give it a go. So the first day of my Christmas holidays we decided to put him in underpants and we haven't looked back. 

We have had a few little accidents, usually when he's been playing or not realised quite quickly enough that he needed it, but he's done amazingly well.
We are now just over 3 weeks in and accidents are rare. In fact I'm not sure I could tell you the last time he had one.  We even went to the park and then the supermarket the other day. He managed a good hour and a half without a toilet stop. 

He still wears a nappy for bed. I'm not ready to face that yet and I don't want his sleep disturbed when it's so important for him and he isn't that great at sleeping anyway.  

For daytime toileting though I really think we have cracked it. Woo hoo! Nappies are so bloody expensive, I'll be glad of the extra pennies. 

He has also decided that he doesn't need a dummy anymore. We made a conscious effort to try to remove it from him during the day and not make them easily accessible (it wasn't forbidden just not encouraged) in an attempt to slowly wean him off them. Again I didn't want it to be stressful for him, you wouldn't just take a child's favourite teddy from them so I couldn't just take his dummy, it's his comforter.  We still have them in the cupboard just in case.  I need not have worried though, he just gave me it one night and said "I don't want that mummy.". He now proudly tells everyone "I don't have a dummy anymore, I'm a big boy."

Rightly so too, he should be proud of himself, after all I couldn't be prouder of him.  Yet it is very bittersweet. My little boy is losing those last little bits of being my baby. Once he's fully out of nappies there is nothing left. No traces of the baby he used to be. I adore this age, even with all the tantrums but I do miss that little baby he used to be. 
Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

12 January 2015

Not in the car Mummy!

Due to my immense feelings of mummy guilt I've had recently I have tried to make the days I have with Luca as fun filled and special as possible. Screw the housework, quality time with my child is where it's at! 

We have been to some lovely places, and had some great days out. I'm not gonna lie, I was feeling rather proud of myself and my mummy skills until... 

"Mummy, I don't want to go in the car. I want to stay at home and play." Luca informed me as we were getting ready for another day trip out.

5 January 2015

To Do List - 2015

In January I decided to make myself a little to do list rather than resolutions. These included some recreational activities as well as life goals. I didn't manage to cross them all off but I did get some done.  I'm going to carry over the ones I didn't manage to 2015 and add a few new ones too. 

So here's a quick recap of the things I did manage to cross off.  

No 4:
I got a new job! This was the most important one on the list for me. I applied for lots of jobs and nothing was coming of them. I knew my only real option was to go back self employed but that scared me now we have Luca. I eventually took the plunge in September and I am so glad I did. I am back doing a job I love and have lots of job satisfaction now. 

No 5:
We have managed to save some money for a deposit to buy a house. Not quite enough yet, as usual once we get some headway something happens meaning we have to dip into it but we are getting there much faster than we were before. 

No 8:
We have also made time to have some regular date nights too. We have had a few months where we haven't managed it but overall we have been spending more time as a couple. Recently though we really seem to have upped our game and our last two date nights were amazing. 
First Ant surprised me to a night watching Dirty Dancing at the theatre. 

4 January 2015

2014 - The Best Bits

We have had an absolutely shit year as a family. The worst things being finding out my auntie (who is like my 2nd mum) has breast cancer and then my father in law having a huge stroke. There have been other things too (that I'm not going to go into) but all in all this year has been an absolute bitch!  

Despite all the crap that's been launched at us we have managed to have some wonderful times and make some lovely memories.  I'm not a dweller, yes our year has been rubbish, but there have been nice times in there as well and these are what I will be taking from 2014. 
As I haven't blogged much this year, and there have been so many posts I wish I had written, I thought it would be nice to share my favourite snippets of the year with some photos, most of which I never got around to blogging about. So here they are, the best bits (in chronological order because it's stressed me out when they weren't. What happened to me?). 

One random day in March we spent the day at home baking as a family. I honestly have no idea what we made. However, what I do remember is how much fun we had and how much Luca laughed.  He was absolutely covered in the mixture and was having the time of his life. I think this photo captures that perfectly.

23 December 2014

Perfect Personalised Pyjamas!

Christmas is nearly here, it's like 2 sleeps! I'm so so excited.  I'm also happy that the cold has eventually crept in too, it's been so mild this year but finally winter feels like it's truly here. One thing I love to do in winter is buy us all new pj's to keep us warm on these cold nights. Warm, snugly, wintry pj's to sleep in but also for those cosy days in, snuggled on the sofa watching Christmas films and eating chocolate. I'm pretty sure there is a law too that you have to have new pj's on Christmas Eve! Isn't there? 

Anyway, this year Luca has been lucky enough to get some of the best pj's yet from My 1st Years which I was going to save for his Christmas Eve box but I just couldn't resist getting him in them earlier.  They are quite literally the most gorgeous pair.

Before we even looked at them we knew they were going to be pretty fabulous, I mean just look at the packaging.  

Once we'd dared to open the beautiful box and tear back the tissue paper we were greeted by a little personalised bag with his new pyjamas nestled inside.  The bag is now hung in Luca's room and every morning when he gets dressed he pops his pj's back in the bag ready for that night.

21 December 2014

Father Christmas made me cry!

No, not like that. I used to be terrified of him in fairness but I'm a grown up now and he doesn't scare me anymore. Well not as much. 

Last weekend we took Luca to see Father Christmas for the first time and I got all emotional.  I did manage to keep it together, just about, but as the Elf walked us down the hallway, chatting to Luca and then opened the door and ushered him in to see the big man, my eyes welled up and I got a bit of a lump in my throat.  

I never expected it to be such an emotional experience but thinking about it how can it not be. Christmas is such a magical time for children and Luca's first visit to the big man reminded me of the exciment, anticipation and wonder that surrounded Christmas for me as a child. As Luca warily walked into the room and saw jolly old St Nick sat there waiting for him, his face lit up and I know it's a moment neither myself nor Anthony will forget. 

The Father Christmas we saw was a lovely gentleman, who looked very authentic, (as you can see in the picture) and really made the whole thing even more special. I was excited about Christmas this year with Luca anyway as it's the first one he seems to really understand, but now I'm beside myself and determined to make ever Christmas as special as I possibly can. I want to keep the magic alive and that look on his face for as many years as possible. 

Merry Christmas everyone! 

9 December 2014

Mummy guilt

This little man is quite simply my best friend. He makes me laugh every single day without fail, harder then some people have ever made me laugh, and brings me so much joy I can't even begin to tell you.

Recently though I've begun to feel like I am failing him.  It is completely ridiculous as I know, in my heart of hearts I am absolutely not but still it's there.

In September I started a new job and with it started working another day a week.  Since I went back to work after my maternity leave I always worked three days a week but now I'm working four.  Since this change I have been absolutely riddled with mummy guilt and these feelings of parenting failure. 

Luca has hated this change and now begs me on a morning not to go to work, even just writing that sentence breaks my heart.  I find some solice in watching him run off into our childminders without so much as a backwards glance. Knowing he loves his time spent there makes it much easier for me to leave him but doesn't ease any of the guilt I feel every morning when I have to answer his pleas with the answer he doesn't want to hear.

He now spends more days a week being looked after by other people than he does being looked after by me, his Mummy, and that literally tears me to pieces. 
Along with begging me not to go everytime we get in the car, he has also started sleeping badly again.  He shouts for me when he stirs in the night which I'm putting down to some seperation anxiety.  

Working four days has also meant that one of the days we have off together is spent doing a weekly food shop and any other chores that need doing, leaving us only two days a week to spend time together.  Two!!!  I'm not liking that whatsoever. I quite honestly would be a SAHM until he went to school if that was a realistic option for us but it's just not. 

Next on the mummy guilt list is nutrition. I  feel like with all the extra demands I'm under now with the new job and amount of travelling I do, I've let our eating habits slip and Luca isn't eating anywhere near as well as I used to ensure he did. I have recently made sure I've tackled this and hopefully we are back on track as a family. 

I'm am a mum who tells other mothers that guilt is a wasted, pointless feeling and we are all doing only our best, and I absolutely, wholeheartedly believe it. So it's a bit of a contradiction that I am then overflowing with it myself and cannot seem to shake it, no matter what I'm internally screaming at myself and other people are telling me. 

I'm praying it eases soon as I'm not sure how much more I can handle. It's absolutely soul destroying and I'm sick of it.  I've just taken some new clients on meaning I now have a lot less travelling than previously, giving me a little bit of breathing space between finishing work and picking up Luca. I also drive past two supermarkets on my way home so fingers crossed this will make my life just that little bit easier. 

Until then, anyone have any suggestions of how to get rid of it? 

Me & Mine Catch Up

I have fallen behind massively with this here blog.  I have half finished blog posts from summer that I just never got around to finishing and I've missed lots of Me & Mine photos despite making an effort to capture them.  Our last one was way back in July!!! 

So here are our catch up photos, as although I haven't posted them we have been taking them, well I say that, we are missing one for September.  That is one thing I am grateful to this project for, drilling it into me to take more photos of us as a family as we now have some wonderful photos of us all together. 

So here they are:

We had a wonderful two weeks off as a family in August, and although we didn't get to go on holiday, as in sun and sea, we made the most of our time together and went on lots of days out together.  I managed to get loads of photos of us as a family and I've got two photos for this month as I couldn't narrow it down any further.
This one was taken at a playground where we all messed around for ages just playing and being kids together.

The second, was taken at York Maze in the finger print maze. Luca loved trying to find all the colours and we again were having so much fun.