207 weeks and 2 days | Me and Mine {February} featuring Joules

February. A very short and very memorable month for me and mine. We’ve done some decorating. Been  planning and getting very excited for our upcoming ski trip with Mark Warner. And, of course, we celebrated our wedding anniversary down in Cornwall; at lovely Dreamcatchers; courtesy of St Mawes Retreats. It is definitely one of the most beautiful houses I’ve ever had the privilege to stay in; but bricks and mortar aside, Cornwall was breathtakingly beautiful. Even in early February. The sun shines differently on that little corner of the British Isles and even on the darkest, stormiest day, the little fishing village of St Mawes was bathed in a magical, clear light. Inside, outside and exploring… We took some family with us; my sister-in-law, her husband and our niece — who is the Twinkles big cousin — and her husband. Spending time with our nearest and dearest is always something I treasure; our annual family BBQs are something I really look forward to and it was lovely hanging out with them for a few days. Really freeing not to have a fixed agenda for a change; to not have to be at a particular place; at a particular time. To have leisurely lunches, bimble around the little towns; browsing shops and… Read More

199 weeks and 3 days | Me and Mine { December 2016 }

2016. What a year. 12 months of extremes. Good versus bad. Yin and yang. We’ve had crushing lows — family and dear friends battling life threatening illnesses. Celebrity deaths by the dozen; most notably was the demise of my lifelong hero and idol Prince. The boys were too young to understand why their mama was sobbing, with big fat tears running down her face, when that news broke. We sat and watched his videos for hours afterwards. The twins now know him as ‘The Man With The Guitar’. But let’s not dwell on the negatives. 2016 has also given us enormous highs. On my birthday I found out that we’d been picked to be on the GLTC testing team; a partnership that we’ve really cherished. Literally the best job ever. And exactly a month later, we found out that we’d been chosen to be ambassadors for Mark Warner, the award winning family holiday company. An amazing opportunity that unquestionably gave us the highlight of our entire year — our first family holiday abroad. It was a dream come true; everything we could have wished for. We met some lovely people (Sarah, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry I’ve been so crap. I haven’t forgotten about you and your lovely family. I’ll… Read More

A Halloween Party | Me and Mine {October}

A couple of weeks’ ago I mentioned that we were planning to throw a Halloween party. We’d decided to make it a bit of a village affair — invite all the neighbours and their children — and decorate the house and garden in a suitably spooky manner. Although we spent hours scouring Pinterest for games and Halloween party food to entertain our guests, I didn’t have to think too hard about where I could find a decent selection of Halloween inspired props and decorations. Earlier in the year, I discovered the most amazing company called Party Delights who sell literally EVERYTHING you could want, for practically any party theme. I got all the props for the twins’ pirate themed party from there — there’s such a lot of choice and everything was really fantastic quality — so they were my first port of call for Halloween party accessories. Happily, they didn’t disappoint and a boxful of skulls, cobwebs and other ghoulish goods arrived the week before the party. So last weekend dawned — dry, overcast and gloomy— the perfect weather for our spooky soirée. I made a gazillion more sugar skull biscuits — you can pop and read the recipe here in case you missed it — and my boy… Read More

186 weeks and 2 days | Me and Mine {September}

More often than not our monthly Me and Mine pics are literally just me and my three lovely boys. Taken — with alarming regularity — at the last minute. Often with a phone/ without makeup (me, not the boys)/ sometimes on the sofa because we can’t actually be bothered to move from the house. But this month it’s all change! Oh yes. We’re bucking the trend and our September Me and Mine pics and — similar to the July ones — are marking a family get-together. And not only that — this month (hallelujah) I’m on time!! Last weekend, it was my little niece’s 4th birthday. Her actual party was held at a local soft play centre but afterwards, we hotfooted it down to a village pub and settled in for the afternoon, for a late lunch/early tea. So as well as being the boys and me, there was my sister and her little family. Our mum and dad, plus my brother-in-law’s mum and step-father. Lots of delicious food, much wine and good company made for a very lovely afternoon indeed. And the perfect setting for this month’s photos. Me and Mine in September So, September, in a nutshell: This month’s highs ~ • Imogen’s birthday party and… Read More

184 weeks and 1 day | {Siblings September}

At last. A siblings update that’s on time!! A sure sign that life is beginning to settle back down into it’s groove, once again, now that the summer holidays are over for another year. It’s been a bit of a weird time too. Some of my tiny boys’ very favourite friends from nursery have left (to go to primary school) and instead of being the littlest in the pre-school room, my Twinkles are on the home straight for the next intake of children starting school next year. Gulp. We had a couple of letters, just a few days ago in fact, ominously declaring that: ‘It has been noted that there is a child nearing school age, living in your property’ Weird that it wasn’t one letter. But hey. I guess they’re individuals, after all. It made me get a lump in my throat. I know it’s a whole year away but it suddenly feels very real — and very close — when you receive a letter to say that you need to select the school — SCHOOL!!! — for your little person (or in our case, people) to attend. It’s too soon!!!! They’re so little!!! But then, speaking to parents who’s children have just started in reception class over the last couple of weeks,… Read More

178 weeks and 1 day| {Siblings July} (even later – oops!)

Gosh, what a month for my little pair of siblings! Lots of ‘firsts’ for them in July. First proper family holiday, the first time on a plane, first time abroad… I could go on and on. There have been a LOT of first experiences; sailing, kayaking, windsurfing. An awful lot of lovely for my two little man-cubs. I’m so, so happy that their very first holiday was so memorable. I have memories from as young 18 months of age so I KNOW that they will remember some of the amazing things that we did during our time with Mark Warner in Sardinia. The other huge thing to mention is that Bertie has finally started his potty training. Wooo-hooo! After still not really showing any clear signs of being ‘ready’, I decided to take the bull by the horns and — with the invaluable help and advice from the boys’ pre-school — we made a start the week before we went on holiday. It was a much easier process than I’d anticipated, to be honest, and he was really, really quick to get to grips with it. OK, he had some accidents — some big some small — but now (almost four weeks on) he’s totally got it. At Camp… Read More

178 weeks | Me and Mine {July} (late again)

July was such a full month. Pregnant and full of goodness. We began the month in Sardinia, on our very first family holiday together. And we’ve ended it at Camp Bestival — more on that to come! July also saw my boy and I host our annual family barbecue (I’ve mentioned this once before). It all began around 8 or 9 years ago, with just the two of us and our parents; in celebration of fathers’ day. Then the following year — as we’d invited our parents for a replay — my sister and her husband gatecrashed, as she wanted to spend time with our dad too. (Along with my sister in law and her husband, for exactly the same reason.) Followed by their kids, as they wanted to spend time with their dad and their grandad. So what began as a little gathering has grown — ever so slightly — over the last few years. Plus, with the addition of three new members of the family (my niece, followed by our twins 6 months later) — very soon to be four, with the arrival of my sister’s new baby this coming winter — this little gathering has snowballed. A couple of weekends ago, we were 19 adults, 3 little ones and… Read More

173 weeks and 1 day | Me and Mine {June}

Well — that’s it — bye bye June. I honestly can’t remember a greyer, wetter summer. The very fact the Michael Eavis has been heard to say — ‘it’s the wettest, muddiest Glastonbury on record’ — speaks volumes doesn’t it? So, due to adverse weather conditions, my boys and I have busied ourselves indoors. Big, man-shaped boy and I been working hard to get my office finished (I’m *almost* in) and my tiny boys have been cooped up indoors for a lot of June. We’ve been to visit friends and relatives and also made a tee-pee out of duvet covers. Plus we’ve been looking forward to next month’s excursion to Camp Bestival; always a firm favourite, I can’t wait to get the boys dressed up in their astronaut costumes!! July is already looking to be the best month of the year, without question! In a couple of days, we’ll be packing our bags and jetting off to warmer climes. The summer holiday that we won in the Mark Warner competition is imminent and, before too long, we’ll be leaving the UK for sunny Sardinia. Even though it’s the second largest island in the Mediterranean, it’s not somewhere that has ever really been on… Read More