‘Twas The Night Before Christmas
{And why Lapland UK is better with friends}

‘Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, Every creature was stirring, As they’d all been kept awake by two very excited little twin boys. OK — I know that the old rhyme didn’t go *quite* like that but that is definitely what’s been happening in our home this evening. I’ve always loved Christmas — and have had a childlike fascination for all the myth and legend surrounding it. Everything from the birth of Jesus to Father Christmas. I love it all. But the festive season kind of takes on a different slant when you have children. And since we’ve had the twins, we’ve been lucky enough to enjoy Christmas through their eyes too. For me, the whole of December means a glorious excuse to spend time with friends and family. The lead up to Christmas presents golden opportunities to do fun things. Weekends are (very well) spent, getting into the festive spirit. Fetching the tree is always a highlight; and something that I’ve loved since I was a small child. But since my boy and I have been together, it’s even more of a tradition. I’d go as far as to say that it’s my favourite day of… Read More

Is it a bird, is it a plane? {GLTC Festival Van / Play Kitchen Review}

The first week of December has given us a bitter wind and the clearest, bluest skies. As you know, I’m not keen on the short dark days but I make an exception for the final month of the year. I love December. From the very first day — to the very last — it’s a month full of excitement and anticipation. The lead up to Christmas is usually a  happy one for me. The rituals of advent; calendar opening, present buying and planning for the big day are things that I relish. I’m definitely a Christmas fairy — rather than a Grinch. Talking of Christmas, if you’re still looking for a present to wow the little people in your life — be it your children or even your grandkids — I wanted to share my number one best present idea with you. I give you — drum-roll please — the Festival Food Van from GLTC. Ta-daaah! A play kitchen with a difference; one to keep little ones amused all year round (certainly not just for Christmas). This clever bit of kit is a master of disguise. Is it a van? Or a play kitchen? Well. It’s both. And — depending on how… Read More

An Autumn Walk in the 100 Acre Wood

I am not a fan of the cold, I think it’s fair to say. But hibernating for six months of the year just isn’t an option, with two very active little twin boys to entertain. Embracing the changing seasons is something that I’ve learnt to do, ever since becoming a mother. A few weekends ago, in search of adventure, we wrapped up warmly and headed of to the forest where I spent much of my childhood. It is beautiful at any time of year; but never more so than in the autumn. The trees — dressed in their seasonal finest — a riot of colour. Their last swan-song before the leaves drop and winter takes a hold. We’d gone with the intent of looking for woodland creatures but it never takes too much to distract the attention of my two little sons and before too long they were swinging from trees and playing hide and seek. I love the forest. If you stop and listen there are so many different sounds. Birdsong, the rustle of leaves high above in the trees but at this time of year, it’s also rutting season so occasionally you hear the bark of a fallow… Read More

235 weeks and 2 days | Our cool caravans are in print!

Exciting news! Dolly 1 and Dolly Too (that isn’t a spelling error, by the way, she is Dolly ‘also’) have been featured in this month’s issue of Reloved magazine! SO amazing to see our cool caravans immortalised in print. I was expecting a little mention but incredibly there’s a 4 page article on the two Dollys! It makes me feel so proud to see them in the pages of a magazine. But even prouder to receive so many lovely messages from people, to say that our caravan makeovers have inspired them to do the same with their own vans. There used to be such a stigma surrounding touring caravans. And they have certainly always been regarded as the poor relation when it comes to VW campers, that’s for sure. Campervans have an air of cool about them whereas caravans have always been seen to be a little bit dowdy and —dare-I-say-it — embarrassing. Not any more though. People are swiftly realising that campervans and motorhomes are costly to run; you have to pay road-tax, insurance, MOT.   Plus there’s the inconvenience of getting to your destination and setting up — only to have to put everything away again if you… Read More

A week at Bosinver Farm Cottages in Cornwall

After our St Mawes adventure in February, we followed it up with another trip down to Cornwall in May. This time to Bosinver, near St Austell. I wrote a little post saying that we’d booked to go, back in September of last year, and we’d been looking forward to it for the best part of 8 months. That said, when you book so far in advance you can’t always guarantee the weather and even though the days leading up to our holiday were warm and dry, the week that we were there was not. It rained and rained. Perfect weather for ducks in fact. But the wet weather didn’t dampen our spirits and my three boys and I had such an amazing time. Bosinver Farm Cottages is almost like a little village in it’s own right. There are 20 separate dwellings on the site; everything from chocolate box cottages to a state of the art eco-house. I’m going to write a dedicated post about the accommodation. I was lucky enough to check out a few of the houses whilst I was there and they’re so beautifully presented they definitely deserve a little write-up of their own. Plus I took far too… Read More

222 weeks and 2 days | Twin Milestones {Siblings June}

How strange time is. I wrote recently on Instagram about how fickle ‘time’ seems to be. A strange commodity — always the same amount of seconds in a minute, minutes in an hour. But when you’re wishing and waiting for something, time drags it’s heels and takes on a much different pace than when you’re busy and happy. I remember trying to fall pregnant so vividly. Each month seemed longer than the last. Time was governed a small window of opportunity; the four hallowed days when I was ovulating. Then rudely punctuated by the appearance of Aunt Flo; which signified the end of another cycle. A very visual reminder that our wishes hadn’t been granted on that occasion. Time was a spiteful old woman. Sneering at me. Slowing her pace and making me despair that I’d never be a mama. And then we were lucky. Mother Nature smiled kindly on me and time changed tempo again. Slow-slow-quick-quick-slow The first 13 weeks of my pregnancy with the twins was agonisingly slow. Each day seemed like an eternity. And even after we’d had the scan to say that the babies were doing well — and they had good, strong heartbeats — it didn’t… Read More

On life lately {and why making Easter bonnets is good for the soul}

I began this blog 4 years, 5 months and 8 days ago. To the day. When I started writing I had no idea that it would become such a permanent fixture in our lives. Or be the bearer of so many amazing and wonderful experiences and life-changing opportunities. It was just an online diary, to share my thoughts and feelings. A cathartic escape, if you will. But over time, it’s become the keeper of our big family milestones and ordinary moments. A place to document the boys’ early years; for them to look back on when they’re a little older. I don’t tend to write about sad or negative things on here. This is my happy place after all. But when life-changing things happen, I do occasionally cover them on the blog. I wrote about the time my dad was gravely ill and rushed to hospital — and about losing our furry faced child Widget. I wrote about the death of my grandad and losing my nana. So whilst this little corner of the internet is mostly about the good things, it does occasionally bear witness to the bad too. Accidents Will Happen If you don’t follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you may not know that I fell on… Read More

Our stay at the Hotel Aiguille Percee in Tignes | With Mark Warner

For someone — like me — who’s never been to the mountains before, the coach journey from Grenoble airport to the ski resort of Tignes was pretty spectacular. Winding through the French Alps, looking down over vast canyons and valleys — all smothered in a thick layer of snow — was breathtaking. And as we pulled in to Tignes-Le-Lac and the coach stopped, we were able to get a proper look at where we were going to be spending our first ever family ski holiday. Tignes is located 2100 metres above sea level; and due to the high altitude offers skiers the chance of fabulous snow, even late on in the season. We arrived on 12th March and — apart from the roads which were clear — everywhere else was covered in a dense blanket of snow. The coach dropped us off and we walked up the footpath to our home for the week; The Hotel Aiguille Percee. Looking every inch as chalet-like as I’d hoped, we were warmly greeted at the front desk by Wayne — the lovely general manager — who checked us in and let us know when, and where, all the welcome meetings were; plus the times of the meals etc. The Accommodation We stayed… Read More