Valentine’s Celebrations

img_2601I’m a sucker for a celebration. If I can hang bunting and blow up balloons, I’m there. I also think it’s great to get your little ones involved with some themed activities, however big or small. We did a few things over the last few days that we would do anytime of year, but with a little valentine’s spin.

I bought a few new craft bits so we could make some valentine’s cards, which Daisy really enjoyed. Based on experience, a word of warning; do not go for a quick pee whilst your 3 year old has a pot of multi-coloured sequins to hand! I returned to the kitchen to find her not placing them on the card so gently as she had been, but showering herself in them instead, holding her very own mini confetti party. I’ll leave you to laugh at how long it took me to get those out of her hair!img1When Daisy was finally sequin free and looking less like she’d a night on the tiles, we decided to make some brownies. After several baking attempts in the past, I have no shame in saying that until Daisy appreciates ingredients need to be weighed and measured correctly, we will be using a ready bought cake mix. Just add an egg, water and butter you say? All hail Betty Crocker! img 2img_2604img 3img 4Finally, we had a little valentines themed breakfast on the weekend. If you’ve followed me for a few months, you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of weekend family breakfasts; you can read a little more about what we do here. As always, it was nothing complicated and just thrown together in the morning. We all sat around the table, ate warm pain au chocolat and berries and laughed at Daisy dancing to Leon Bridges. img_2557img_2560img 5It just goes to show, you don’t have to spend a fortune to celebrate and the impression it leaves lasts a long time. I’m sure Daisy will be asking to make brownies regularly and I’ll be finding sequins all over the house for weeks to come!

Emma  x

Play Room Makeover

How do children accumulate so much junk? Like, seriously? Daisy hasn’t long turned 3 and the toy situation was getting out of control. When Daisy started ‘playing’ with her toys a lot more, we decided to move the dining table into the kitchen, to give her (and the toys) a space of their own. This was great for a while, but gradually as more toys appeared, the room got cluttered and meant there was less and less space for her to actually play.

Everything was mixed up in a few large storage bags, so Daisy would end up tipping everything out and not actually playing with anything. As you can see, it started getting a bit out of hand.Just before Christmas, I decided enough was enough and armed with black bags, I started going through what felt like a real life version of pages 300 – 350 of the Argos catalogue. I threw out anything broken, separated anything that could be sold or donated and then split all the keepers into categories.

One mama and Daisy trip to IKEA (whilst wearing my very apt ‘Girl Power’ jumper), I picked up some storage units, boxes and obviously the essential napkins and candles; in our family, you don’t leave IKEA without them!I bought two of these units and eight storage boxes (similar here). I put them all together within an hour and already the room looked so much better. Label maker in hand, I popped one above each box to say what goes where and filled them up. The units themselves are the perfect height for sitting too, so a few pretty cushions made it a cosy reading spot.Daisy has so much more room to play now and it’s also helping to teach her to tidy her toys away; win, win! It made our Christmas shopping easier too, as we could see exactly what she has and what she loves playing with the most (as well as knowing what we can store and where). The blinds are a little squiffy and I’m planning on adding a few rails on the main wall for her arty stuff, but for now a few easy changes have made a huge difference to the little lady’s playtime.Emma  x

France September 2017

After going to France in June for Daisy’s first holiday abroad, we knew we wanted to do something similar after the wedding. All the planning and hectic rushing around leading up to it made me feel a little guilty for not being able to spend more time with her, so a Eurocamp holiday was perfect. In June, we went over towards Brittany (you can read about it here) so we thought we’d try a bit further over this time, staying at La Croix du Vieux Pont.img_1256The site itself is fantastic for children and is one of Eurocamp’s ‘Mini Paradise’ sites, meaning it’s perfect for toddlers too. We had one of these wagons from the reps on site for the week, which was brilliant for walking around as Daisy isn’t a fan of her pram (but still gets tired legs and insists on bringing all her ‘gang’ with her). There are three lakes, an indoor/outdoor pool complex, soft play, a bouncy castle, pedalos, horse riding, go karting and much more, but the best thing about these holidays for us is the freedom it gives children.img_1355img_1408img_1412img_1360The site is also an excellent location for day trips, with lots of places to visit in the area. We visited Château de Pierrefonds, a 14th century castle set in beautiful grounds, a few local towns and Disneyland Paris. Jon did all the driving and found it really easy, even saying that the roads in France were nicer to drive than in Britain.img_1263img_1352It was the perfect place to go to relax and make memories on our first trip as the Lewis family and we’re already planning our 2018 holiday over there too. If you’ve ever thought about doing these kind of holidays but aren’t sure, or you just want to have a look at our adventures, follow the link below to see a highlight video we’ll be watching for years to come.img_1416

Highlights of France, September 2017

Emma  x

 

Autumn Bucket List

I struggle picking a favourite season, but there are a few things about autumn (or fall) that I absolutely love. I can’t settle down in the evening without a few candles and a blanket, I love the warm colours of fallen leaves and cinnamon just gets me. Not to mention it’s the run up to Christmas and… this girl loves Christmas!

We’re often caught short in finding something to do on a day off, especially when the weather is unpredictable and plans have to be changed last minute. With that in mind, I thought that I’d create a printable bucket list, with some fun activities to make the most of the season and ensure we’ve always got something planned.Autumn Bucket ListAutumn Bucket List1Autumn Bucket List2I put three frames up on the wall in the hallway, so we can tick each thing off with a dry erase pen when we’ve done it and it’s always visible. There’s a mixture of day trips, food, movies, crafts and all round family fun. Lots of the activities cost little or nothing at all but will still secure just as many memories as a potentially pricey day out.img_1106I’d love to know what your plans are for autumn and what you’ll be adding to your bucket list. If you’d like to print ours off, you can download them for free below.

Autumn Bucket List Printable 1

Autumn Bucket List Printable 2

Autumn Bucket List Printable 3

Emma  x

 

July & August Favourites

So with wedding planning in full swing, I didn’t manage to get my July favourites posted (face palm) so I’m doubling up this time.

First off is this Jo Malone Room Spray in Pomegranate Noir. A few weeks back, the Jo Malone website had a ‘Just Because’ game running, where you could win a free gift with any purchase. I treated myself to a new perfume for the wedding and this was my free gift! Ordinarily, I would struggle to pay £44 for a room spray, but I can see the fuss over these. I keep it in our bedroom and one spritz manages to make the entire upstairs smell incredible.We had a lovely day out at Hendrewennol Fruit Picking Farm at the beginning of August and it’s definitely going to be a day trip staple. I wrote a post about it here if you’d like a read. It was such a fab day out for children and we made pancakes with berry sauce out of our pickings too. If you’re local to the area, I’d highly recommend it.img_0731Something for my fellow blondies now. I’m forever trying to rid my hair of any brassiness and have tried lots of different purple shampoos and treatments. The Charles Worthington Colour Enhancer Ultra Violet Shampoo is absolutely the purple shampoo I’ve ever used. After one wash it made a massive difference and I now use it once a week, just to keep my colour in check. It does leave your skin with a tinge of death-like colour, but it washes off easily with a good scrub and it’s totally worth it for the results.For my hen party back in July I knew I wanted a white/cream dress for the evening but really struggled finding something I liked. I wanted a floaty boho number but they were all a little too casual or way out of my price range. I spotted this maternity dress and thought I’d chance it. Best, decision, ever! It’s from the Rochelle Humes range on Very and is completely stunning. Well designed for pregnancy and breastfeeding, it’s fantastic for before and (long) after baby. There wasn’t any excess bump material so it hung straight down and you’d never have guessed it was a maternity piece. I’m even planning on wearing it for our garden party after the wedding in September (cross your fingers for good weather!).A few weeks back, the lovely Erica Davies posted on her Instagram something that her son had said to her when he was learning about bees in school. I’m always looking for nice quotes to make prints for around the house and as soon as I read it I made this little print. I sent one over to Erica too and you can download it here if you’d like.Bee1Just in time for autumn, I’ve got Candice Brown’s gorgeous book, Comfort. It’s jam packed with the most delicious recipes and is honestly worth it just for the images alone. I loved everything Candice made on last years Great British Bake Off which she went on to win; and deservedly so. I can’t wait to get stuck into this and am particularly looking forward to making Peanut Butter and Marshmallow Blondies… and Cherry Amaretto Bakewell Tart…. oh and Stilton Twisted Straws….. okay, they’re all incredible and I don’t know where to start! A must for anyone looking for some scrumptious comfort food.Lastly, I had our holiday photos printed out with LALALAB a couple of weeks ago and I couldn’t love them more. I love polaroid style photos and being able to add text to these was brilliant too. I’ll be getting these prints regularly for any trips or holidays we have in future.img_1016I’d love to know if you’ve tried and liked any of the above; let me know in the comments.

Emma  x