Showing posts with label me and mine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label me and mine. Show all posts

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Me and Mine in April

April has been full of family time and adventures and choosing our favourite things about the month has proven quite tough.  The weather has been all over the place and we have bared our legs in shorts only to be reaching for our coats the next day.   This month's pictures are a first and I am expecting some sort of medal or letter from the queen for this achievement - all six of us looking at the camera.  Of course we aren't all smiling, but nobody is crying either and I love them!

We visited the Rare Breeds Centre near Ashford and they had the most beautiful bluebell woods.  I took a few pictures of the boys and then asked a stranger to take one of us and they turned out lovely! 

This month I loved having two weeks with all four children at home, taking photos in the bluebells, getting my shiny new phone and spring cleaning (parts of) the house.

Daddy loved finding a coffee Rotisserie in Hamburg, watching Cora grow up so much, getting his shorts back out and driving on the fast German roads.

Dylan loved hunting for Easter eggs in Grandma and Grandpa's garden, making pancakes at Centre Parcs, playing I spy and starting choir club at school.

Archie loved playing football in Grandma and Granpa's garden, climbing the green mountain at Plopsa, the water slides at Centre Parcs and going on the rides at the funfair in Hamburg.

Finn loved having his brothers home every day over the holidays, holding hands and walking more, splashing in the pools at Centre Parcs and going on the rides at Peppa Pig World.

Cora loved finally working out how to crawl and get around, learning to clap her hands, her first taste of chocolate over Easter and playing with the boys' toys whilst they are out.
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Friday, 31 March 2017

Me and Mine March

I started the year so much more organised than I finished the last one and I managed all of two months before I gave into disorganisation once more.  March has been the month I tried to catch up again, mastered the to-do list and completed failed at the elusive work/life balance.  

Generally it has been quite quiet with more quiet weekends close to home than anything else.  The bloke had a birthday and we had a lovely Mother's Day seeing my Mum and Dad and my brother and his family - these photos were taken on Mother's Day in my parent's garden.

We are all ready for the two weeks off school which start this afternoon and whilst we have few few concrete plans we are looking forward to some spontaneity and family time. 

This month
Mama is loving getting her sandals back out, lighter evenings, eating creme eggs and brunch outside at the beach cafe.

Daddy is loving his new coffee machine (something that seems to come up far too often), Finn's crazy personality coming out more, cuddles with Cora whilst she still feels like a baby and a big night out with old friends

Dylan is loving doing Easter crafts at school, playing games on the X-box, choosing his own sweets at the newsagents for film night and playing Mummy, Daddy and baby zombies at school with his friends.

Archie is loving building 'battle bots' with his Lego Duplo, dodging lasers and crocodiles on the walk to preschool, not having to wear a coat everyday and his new bunk beds.

Finn is loving playing peekabo with Cora, being out the buggy walking more often, singing the Tiny Tim turtle song over and over and counting things.

Cora is loving having breakfast every day, practicing her pincer grip (mostly on my skin), playing with duplo and playing peekabo with Finn.

And finally, to sum up March here is what a real family photo look like - not a single person looking at the camera!

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Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Me and Mine February

The end of Febraury has come around so fast that I completely forgot to write my Me and Mine post last night! I know it is a short month yet it still catches me out! February is always a busy one with half term and two little boys celebrating their birthdays and we took our family photos purposefully near the end of the month.  We threw the boys a soft play party on Sunday at a little venue right on the seafront and came straight out onto the beach to snap these.  As you can see they are all hyped up from running around and excess sugar but nobody is crying this month!

The month Mama is loving signs of spring on the way, going up to London for my friend's birthday, watching Once upon a Time on Netflix and starting the big spring declutter

Daddy is loving playing pie face with the kids, shopping for coffee machines, a week off of school runs and discovering Palak Paneer - the best dish from our local Indian.

Dylan is loving writing his own stories,  playing mummies, daddies and baby zombies, dressing up as a Gingerbread Man when they had traditional tales week at school and going swimming

Archie is loving turning 4, having a party with all his friends, building Duplo 'battle bots' and playing with the scaletrix at the Hornby museum.

Finn is loving opening birthday presents on his second birthday, eating lots of cake, riding his horsey (the Wobbelboard) and climbing on everything!

Cora is loving wires,  fish fingers with all the coating taken off, chewing on Mummy's teething necklace and singing Row, row, row your boat with Finn.

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Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Me and Mine January

We are already a whole month into 2017 and what a crazy one it has been! In the wider world we have seen the devestation that Trump is causing and in my smaller world we have applied for a school place (Archie) , travelled to find snow, gained extra teeth (Cora) and watched far more TV than I would like.  

My photos from this month aren't the sharpest and typically we forgot to find anyone to take them until the last minute of our ski trip so there is a fading light and less than ideal background.  We managed three vaguely happy (not crying) children out of four so I am still calling it a win.  We had the most amazing family holiday and I hope I will look back and remember how we were too busy having fun to stop for photos.

In January Mama is loving seeing her sister in France, going up to London for the kids fashion trade shows, hot baths after a cold day and eating cheese fondue and raclette.

Daddy is loving skiing down the red runs, watching Once Upon a Time on Netflix, quiet weekends at home and watching how well Dylan could ski.

Dylan is loving going down the blue run with mummy and Daddy, making a holiday scrap book, birthday cake at Uncle Oli's birthday and learning about the Chinese New Year at school.

Archie is loving skiing down the snake, playing Dig Out on the tablet at the airport, finding the letter 'A' everywhere and playing with Cora in the mornings.

Finn is loving spending time with Aunty NatNat, pinching everyone else's food, turning the tv off if we put anything other than Blaze on and perfecting his pronunciation of the word 'biscuit'.

Cora is loving carbs (her favourite foods are toast, chips and potatoes), her doll from Nanny, bouncing on her feet and sleeping in the crook of my arm.

February may only be a short month, but two out of our six have birthdays to celebrate so the boys are all pretty excited for it!
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Saturday, 31 December 2016

Me and Mine December // Me and Mine 2017

Today is not only the last day of the month, but the last day of the year too.  I feel like December crept up on us out of nowhere and I am left wondering quite how we got here.  2016 has been both a great and terrible year.  Whilst in the wider world we saw many deaths, Brexit and Trump, in my smaller world we saw first, third and fifth birthdays, we welcomed a new baby girl, we celebrated as Finn learned to walk, run and climb, Archie started preschool and Dylan went into year one.  

This year has been busy, it has been chaotic at times, messy, disorganised but always wonderful.  We have all grown and learned alongside each other, we have developed new relationships, expanded existing ones and my little family is bigger and better than ever.

December has been a mixture of festivities and outdoor adventures as we have made the most of the milder winter weather.  Christmas was celebrated many times over with different parts of our families and we will be seeing the new year in surrounded by our friends.  

As I mentioned, the end of this month has crept up all too quickly so this post is both an end of the month and end of the year round up.  

This Month Mummy is loving buying Christmas presents, the look on the children's faces on Christmas morning, watching the sunset at the beach and starting running again

Daddy is loving Cora being more interactive, time off over Christmas, buying a new computer and getting back to the gym

Dylan is loving Christmas crafts, Christmas tree chocolates at Grandma's house, his new 'colour with mum' book and doing treasure hunts around the house

Archie is loving snuggling up in his dressing gown, his new haircut, his Hulk Smash hands and having his big brother around more.

Finn is loving being allowed chocolate now (the real stuff), dancing to everything and anything, pushing his new dolly and pushchair around and watching Blaze

Cora is loving her first tastes of food, bouncing in the jumperoo, sitting up to play and blowing raspberries on the back of her hand.

I have put all of our me and mine photos from the year together too - I love seeing how we have all changed and grown as my bump became a baby, as Finn found his feet, Archie lost his hair and Dylan learned to write.  

 I can't wait to see what 2017 has in store for us.  There is so much I want to do, so many places I would love to go, so many books I want to read and things I want to learn.  2017 will be the year Cora turns one, Finn starts to communicate more, Archie will start school and at the end of the next year we will be applying for Dylan's Junior school place!

Goodbye 2016, you have been wonderful.

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Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Me and Mine November

We actually had our Me and Mine photos taken near the beginning of the month, which isn't very representative of a month where I have felt ridiculously disorganised.  November has felt pretty manic for no real reason and my to do list is growing faster than I can tick things off.  It has been a lovely month though, full of Autumnal colours, hot drinks, cosy knits and snuggly afternoons.

My friend Kylie (Newport Photographic) took our photos and I just love how they captured us in Autumn.   I say it every month, but getting all 6 of us in the frame is a real challenge! 

This month Mama is loving having her little sister around, Carvery Sunday lunches, Black Friday shopping and getting my slippers back out again.

Daddy is loving getting back to the gym, playing Fifa, going out more with friends and how interactive Cora is.

Dylan is loving learning about festivals, school trips to the park, having a sleepover with his cousins and making sticker charts for his brothers (and then rewarding them all day with stickers).

Archie is loving learning songs for the Preschool Christmas show, playing in the eco-garden and coming home covered in mud, baking with Aunty Nat Nat and scooting through puddles.

Finn is loving Blaze and the Monster Machine, climbing on everything, Puddle splashing in his wellies and cuddling Cora

Cora is loving being able to roll, bathtime, sleeping in Mummy's bed and being tickled around her neck.

I can't believe we are already going into December, this year has gone so fast and December is going to be busy with Christmas shows, parties and of course the big days (we are celebrating Christmas twice as my sister is going away for the big day).
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Monday, 31 October 2016

Me and Mine October

The end of the month was approaching and we still hadn't sorted our Me and Mine pictures for the month (which is no suprise really as we always seem to leave it to the last minute), but on a day trip to London we bumped into the super lovely Hannah from In the Den photography and she took some snaps for us.

Six is a lot of people to get in one shot, even more so when two are overtired and two are so full of sugar from the toffee apples they have just consumed that they struggle to stay still at all (in fact the moment the photos were taken they started running through the giant puddles soaking themselves)  I don't think we are ever going to get one of those posed shots where everyone looks at the camera and smiles but I don't care, this is my crazy bunch and I couldn't love them more.

October hasn't been particularly eventful, but the weather has been so mild that we have loved being outside, exploring and playing and not having to layer up too much.  This post comes live from Butlins where we are enjoying a weekend away together and it feels like the perfect way to end half term.

This month Mama has loved hearing how well Dylan is getting on at school on Parent's evening, taking photos in the Autumn leaves, hot coffee after a summer of iced ones and dungaree dresses

Daddy is loving playing on a giant pacman machine, Halloween, the dessert buffet at Butlins and Costa lunch on a Wednesday

Dylan is loving playing Clash Royale on the tablet, spending money at the arcades, having a sleepover with friends during half term and making a start on his Christmas list.

Archie is loving playing Pokemon, splashing in every puddle he finds regardless of whether he is in suitable footwear, learning to write his name and counting everything.

Finn is loving talking more, pressing the button at traffic lights, throwing things and moving up the dairy ladder

Cora is loving her Little Tikes playmat, midnight parties, chewing everything and growing into the next size clothing!

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Friday, 30 September 2016

Me and Mine September

It has been such a warm September that the shorts and summer dresses haven't quite been packed away yet.  We have spent more time at the beach than I imagined and less time splashing in puddles.  It has been a month of adapting again after a wonderful summer and we are slowly falling back into a routine - even if the morning bit isn't coming back so naturally.  

I can't find the remote for my camera and trying to get six people in a photo is challenging, especially when you are relying on one adult to keep them all still whilst I run back and forth trying to set the timer!  Archie thought it was great fun to stay still and then run off as soon as I pressed the button.  We managed one where nobody is actually crying and we are all pretty much in focus so we are putting it down as a success.

This month Mama is loving Instagram stories, that she doesn't have to pack away her sandals just yet, quieter days with just the two babies and getting a bit more sleep (thanks Cora!)

Daddy is loving having more time with the children, Pizza date night, playing computer games with the boys and Magnum ice creams.

Dylan is loving starting swimming lessons, being in red class, playing Pokemon and after school playdates

Archie is loving preschool, drinking cups of tea, the number 45 and playing on the tab.

Finn is loving Malted Milk biscuits as we start the milk ladder, playing ball with dogs in the park, having Aunty NatNat around again and dancing

Cora is loving swimming on a Wednesday, going into some of her next size clothing, Mama milk and tickles around her neck.

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Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Me and Mine August

August has to be my favourite month of the year, even more so now that Dylan is at school.  There is sunshine more often than not, there is so much to do, there are birthdays and cake and there is ice cream.  We are all together, we are always outdoors and we have had such an amazing month.

The sun really has shone this month, and I don't think the temperature has dropped below twenty degrees in weeks.  We have had so many late nights, afternoons on the beach, play dates with friends and mornings exploring.  Everyone is looking a little tanned, their hair has got a little lighter and their legs all seem to have grown a few inches too.

August saw Dylan turning 5 and I celebrated my last 20 something birthday too.  I can still believe that the return to school is ages away even though really it is only a few short days and we haven't quite finished our summer fun yet.

This month Mama is loving watching the sun setting over the sea, Cora's first smiles, all the family days and birthday cake.

Daddy is loving Folk Week, having more time off to spend as a family, drinking iced coffees and racing around the soft play centre with Finn. 

Dylan is loving having all his friends at his birthday party, picking fruit with his friends, spending his money at the festival and learning the diabolo at Folk Week

Archie is loving stripping off at the beach and running in the sea, his conversations with Cora, staying out past bedtime and sleeping over at Grandma and Grandpa's house

Finn is loving walking!!!, dancing at folk week, cuddles with his baby sister and eating chips at the beach. 

Cora is loving smiling at her brothers, growing into the next size clothes, Mummy and bathtime.

September is going to be a big adjustment with the earlier mornings, the school runs and the changing weather, but we have so many wonderful summer memories to keep us going.
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Sunday, 31 July 2016

Me and Mine July

July has been a month for juggling - working out how to do everything with a small person firmly attached to me.  It is our second me and mine as a family of 6 and we are all a little more in focus this time! July has been packed full of birthday parties and has seen Dylan and Archie break up for the summer holiday.  We have had enough sunshine that I am leaving the month with happy memories of four weeks spent outdoors.

We are finding our feet as a family of six and with a little bit of winging it and a lot of teamwork things are getting simpler.  These photos were taken in the woods where we spent a lovely afternoon eating a picnic and exploring.  We each wore a baby on our front in slings and a back pack on our back and the bigger two wandered with us.

The month Mama is loving snuggly newborn cuddles, listening to the boys singing to their sister, days out with the whole family and all the birthday cake we have eaten this month

The bloke is loving collecting Pokemon, introducting Dylan to computer games, eating at the Carvery when we can't be bothered to cook and ice cold Coca Cola.

Dylan is loving playing minecraft, counting down to his birthday, lazy mornings in his pjs and playing in the sea.

Archie is loving having his big brother home from school, singing twinkle twinkle to his baby sister, pointing out numbers everywhere we go and playing with water in the garden.

Finn is loving walking along just holding one finger, unravelling the tin foil in the kitchen, cuddling baby Cora and playing in Grandma and Grandpa's garden.

Cora is loving milk, cuddles, her first bathtime and being in the sling.

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Thursday, 30 June 2016

Me and Mine June

Well June has been exciting, the newest member of our tribe arrived this week and I am now the mama to a beautiful baby girl as well as my trio of boys.  She was born on the 27th meaning that our Me and Mine photos for this month are incredibly last minute as we were waiting to see if she came early like her brothers and then being caught in the newborn bubble meant that we left our photos until tonight which was a complete and utter disaster.  Nobody wanted to take them, especially not Finn and the light was starting to go.  I managed two photos before they refused to sit on the bed so this is what you get.  We made it into a picture though, we recorded our family this month and that is what matters.

Mama is loving having a baby girl, breastfeeding again after so long, that she got her homebirth and being able to lie flat on my back again.

Daddy is loving time off work, his new 7 seater car, squishy newborn cuddles and watching the Euros.

Dylan is loving having a little sister, learning about Pirates at school, meeting his new teacher ahead of year one and helping Finn learn to walk

Archie is loving showing everyone his new baby, stroking baby girl's hair, singing his numbers very loudly and team Umizoomi

Finn is loving climbing on everything, taking selfies on his toy phone and saying Cheeeeeese, learning the actions to his favourite songs (wind the bobbin up) and strawberries.

Baby girl is loving cuddles, milk, more cuddles and more milk

Next month hopefully we can get some nice shots of the six of us, or indeed in focus would be an improvement, but this seems to sum up the first three days of life with four under five.
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Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Me and Mine May

May has ended with a wonderful weekend for us - my Dad turned 60 and we had a family picnic followed by a garden party to celebrate.  We all stayed at my parents' house and these photos were taken yesterday on the way down to brunch in our favourite seaside cafe.  Last minute as ever, but we did it!

May has been a month of tiredness, tidying and time together.  Whilst I am convinced that June's photo will still feature the five of us, I will reach the 37 week 'full term' milestone during June so there may be an extra little person to squish into the shot.  June is about preparing, no longer living in denial that things are coming round quick and of course enjoying the last bit of time just as we are now.

I don't feel like May has been a particularly eventful month for us, but we have enjoyed the sunshine, time together, days out and mornings at the beach.  We have lived at our own pace and enjoyed our family.  

This month mama is loving her new Saltwater sandals (yes, yellow goes with everything), spring cleaning the house, watching the boys play together outside and seeing the extended family for a big picnic this weekend.

Daddy is loving his new car, the excuse to have a sticker book again, playing rounders at the family picnic and Indian take aways (He seems to be having more cravings than I do!)

Dylan is loving wearing his school shorts, sticking stickers in his new football sticker book, ice cream at the beach and our day at Paulton's Park

Archie is loving that it is warm enough to sleep naked, The George pig dinosaur ride at Paulton's park, looking for the letter A everywhere and throwing stones into the sea

Finn is loving climbing - on everything and anything, being sung to, his first ice lolly and eating sand at the beach.

 It feels crazy that this may be the last family photo as we are now, I am enjoying my tribe of boys, watching them grow and bond and play together and whilst I can't wait to welcome this little girl into our lives, I could happily press pause for a while and just be us a little longer.

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Saturday, 30 April 2016

Me and Mine April

April has been the month that really highlighted the unpredicatability of British weather.  We have had wondeful days at the beach where we bared our arms and came home with rosy cheeks followed by days where we put our ski jackets back on for the school run and jumped in every puddle we could find.  

We were actually ridiculously organised and took these photos quite early in the month! My little sister came home after 5 months of working abroad and we all had a lovely lunch at the local beach cafe.  We got down there early as the weather was so nice and spent the entire day there with our buckets, spades and ice creams.

April has been busy in some ways but full of routine too.  It has flown by all too quickly and I am glad that we have a long weekend now to see it out.

This month Mama has been loving summer dresses and flip flops because she doesn't have to reach her toes,  seeing Britney Bump again at the growth scan, finally getting her hair cut - the first time since Finn was born, and afternoon tea at the Savoy as part of P&G's Thank You Mum campaign with Jessica Ennis-Hill.

Daddy is loving that the living room is decluttered, exploring in the woods with the boys, that summer is on the way and how well Archie is doing with potty training

Dylan is loving after school clubs that he started this term, the penny arcades,  teaching Finn new things and getting his hair cut.

Archie is loving wearing big boy pants, going to nursery with his friends, eating apples and watching snooker on TV

Finn is loving being discharged from peadiatric care, singing to us in his own little way, pushing his wooden trolley up and down the living room and eating grapes.

We are excited for May now, hopefully the start of more stable good weather, lots of time enjoying our family just the way it is and two bank holiday long weekends too.

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Thursday, 31 March 2016

Me and Mine March

I think the theme to this year's Me and Mine photos is going to be  'ah, it is the end of the month, quick, jump outside and look this way'.  We surpassed last month's 5pm on the second to last day with a 10am on the very last day of the month as the boys were already in bed last night when I remembered.  We did it though, we always get it in there somehow and whilst they certainly aren't the best photos, you can see us.

This month has been about Easter, with the excitement starting very early on, Easter cards being drawn daily, talk of chocolate, egg hunts, time off school and family.  Our Easter was lovely with a great mix of time just us five, time with the wider family and a little spring cleaning thrown in there too.  We are leaving this month with anticipation of a busy April, lots of appointments,  the rest of the Easter holidays to enjoy and hopefully a continuation of the lovely Spring weather we keep getting glimpses of.

This month Mummy is loving how strong baby kicks are getting, having her big boy off school for a while, the way that Finn sings to himself when he is happy and buying the boys matching t-shirts.

Daddy is loving feeling Britney bump kicking, turning 32, Cadburys mini egg cakes and hitting the (dry) ski slopes again when we went to Snozone in Milton Keynes for the day.

Dylan is loving writing birthday invitations to everyone and anyone (his birthday isn't until August but he likes to be organised), playing pirates with Finn as his matey, hunting for eggs in Grandma's garden and paddling in the sea.

Archie is loving the freedom of the empty beach and being able to run around, his new scooter, bedtime sleepovers in Dylan's bed and having his big brother home more.

Finn is loving emptying packs of baby wipes, eating sand, being able to crawl around outside more now that it is dry and his little slip on moccs.

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Monday, 29 February 2016

Me and Mine February

It was 5pm yesterday when I realised that we hadn't taken our monthly photo yet.  The sun was disappearing, the sky darkening, the children tired and there was no time to go anywhere.  I take plenty of pictures outside our house, but I must have looked stranger than usual setting up the tripod right outside our gate and grabbing the children for a quick photo.  They weren't in the mood (especially Archie who had just woken up) and we only managed two shots before they ran back inside so there wasn't much to choose from!

I blame February for being shorter than the other months, but really this photo sums up our month.  Everything was a little last minute, from planning Archie's birthday adventure once we were already in the car to icing Finn's birthday cake as the guests were arriving at his party.  Sometimes life with three is hectic, well most of the time really but we always get there in the end.

February means birthdays for the youngest two, Archie celebrated reaching three and a week later Finn turned one with a big party for them both in the middle.  We had our twenty week scan, a gestational diabetes test and a referral to a consultant because of baby's large size and we also had half term, the busyness of day to day life and everything in between.  Here is our family as February comes to an end 

Mummy is loving seeing her baby girl on the sonographer's screen again, watching Finn learn so many new things all of a sudden, looking at Timehop every morning and getting caught up in the memories of life with a newborn and the rather large baby related spending spree she has been on.

Daddy is loving having a new car on loan for a week, a birthday day out for Archie's big day, playing roaring games with Finn and having naps whilst he is working from home.

Dylan is loving learning about Dinosaurs this half term at school, sharing grapes with Finn (eating half of each one and then passing it to his brother to finish), going to the cinema and birthday cake.

Archie loved having his birthday and opening each present to tell us what he had 'won'.  He is loving zooming everywhere on his scooter, playing with his new Blaze monster truck toys and having Dylan at home over half term.

Finn is loving roaring like a dinosaur, turning the xbox on and off (mostly whilst it is in use), waving at everyone and eating his dairy and egg free robot cake.

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Sunday, 31 January 2016

Me and Mine January

It is our third year taking part in the Me and Mine Project and I am so glad that we started taking our monthly family photos.  Not only have our boys grown, but so has our family and by the end of this year there will be an extra child to squeeze into the shot - we do like to make things difficult!

January has been a busy month for us, we announced our fourth pregnancy as well as sharing a little gender reveal video.  We headed to the alps for a week away skiing with Snowbizz and Dylan and Archie had their very first ski lesson whilst Finn had his first experience of the snow.  Dylan started his second term of school and we have started preparing for two little birthdays next month.

Our photos had to come from France, although leaving it until the afternoon of the last day meant the boys were not feeling particularly co-operative and a mixture of the sun starting to set and me still not feeling particularly comfortable with my camera settings in the snow meant that our skin seems to look particularly grey and the snow a little blue.  This is us though, as we enter an exciting year.

family photo, family in the snow, snowbizz, me and mine project

Mummy is loving the 2 weeks she seemed to have energy amidst all the pregnancy exhaustion, finally being able to show off her bump, quiet mornings reading whilst the boys had their ski lessons and shopping for a baby girl.

Daddy is loving getting his skis back on now that he is more confident on the snow, finding out he is going to have a daughter, catching up with old friends and spending more time with the children.

Dylan is loving learning about space at school, making friends on the ski holiday, seeing Aunty NatNat and having packed lunches at the Snow Creche.

Archie is loving learning to ski, telling me all about what his baby sister is up to, playing Vikings and dragons and finding new hiding places.

Finn is loving learning to crawl,  all the attention that he got in the creche on holiday, eating chips and roaring.

 We are looking forward to a calmer and cake filled Febraury now.

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Thursday, 31 December 2015

Me and Mine December

The end of December means the end of the year which is a scary thing.  Whilst the days are at times long, the years are inevitably short and the end of 2015 means my baby boy isn't the newborn I still see him as anymore.  Our family has grown this year, we have learned, fought, worried, laughed and loved and December's photo had to be taken in front of my parent's Christmas tree as it has been for the past two years.

Every Christmas day we spend there, eating too much, spoiling the boys, playing cards and being a family.  This year was quieter with my little sister out working in France for the winter season but we had a wonderful weekend anyway.

December has been a slower month than I intended, we didn't fit in half of what I had planned and I liked it that way.  There will always be next year, we still had fun and my big boy needed some calm and quiet time to help him cope with the tiredness that comes at the end of your very first term of school.

We have managed another whole year of our monthly photos and it is definitely something I will be continuing into 2016.  I hope even if I do ever stop blogging that this is a tradition we keep up, as our year has been full of beautiful shots (mixed with last minute phone selfies of course).

This month

Mummy is loving the whole Christmas weekend, Yule Log, winning at cards and her new slippers

Daddy is loving the Pacman light he got for Christmas, time off work, the excuse to eat more cheese than usual and his new computer monitor.

Dylan is loving the giant Christmas tree in Covent Garden, the trumpet that Father Christmas brought him, having a pyjama day and learning all about animals with his new book.

Archie is loving  seeing the Snowman, the fart gun his Aunty and Uncle bought him, singing Rudolph the red nose reindeer at the top of his voice and having his big brother home from school.

Finn is loving finally getting his first tooth, alpro yoghurts, wrapping paper and the baubles with bells in them.

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Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Goodbye 2015, Hello 2016

As we said goodbye to 2014 and entered the new year, my overriding emotion was excitement.  Whilst I am sure we had other things planned, the most immediate and important was welcoming a new person who was still growing inside me.  Our year was always going to start with an adventure and Finn's arrival was certainly memorable.

By the end of February our year was already nothing like the one we had planned.  Our beautiful baby boy was born with a congenital virus and admitted to the Special Care Baby Unit to be looked after.  Our perfect son was fighting a battle and we were told it was one he may not win.  I always think it is amazing what you are capable of when you least expect it, and we all have a strength within that we do not know until we need it.  The three weeks Finn spent in hospital were the hardest of my life, but we all came out of it with a new love for the amazing support network of family and friends who reminded us every day that we could cope and that we were.  They provided childcare, an ear to listen, baked goods to keep us going and relief when we needed it most.  We learnt that as a family we can get through anything and it made every milestone Finn meets, every new skill he learns that bit more amazing.

The month after bringing Finn home from hospital is a bit of a blur still.  Real life was imposed on me rather abruptly and with hospital appointments to take all three children to several times a week, it seemed we didn't have much time to settle into our new life as a family of five.  I couldn't have been prouder of my big boys as they coped so well with the changes, despite the fact Finn was usually the focus of attention and they bonded even more than they already had.  As the appointments slowed down, we settled down too and found our new routine, our new normal.

It was Dylan's last summer before school and the adventures we thought we would have were overshadowed by three cases of Chicken pox and two hospital admissions.  Dylan got his first pair of glasses and when I look back at the early photos from the year, it looks like there is something missing from his face.

September was all about my big boy as he started school and he just loved it from day 1.  He has always been so desperate to learn and school seems to be satisfying his natural curiosity.  I am constantly amazed at how much he is learning, how quickly he is progressing and how keen he is to go in every morning.  The boy who wouldn't go near a pen in August wrote his own letter to Santa this year and I could read at least 80% of it.

Before school started, we managed to fit in two holidays, a long weekend down in Cornwall and a week away in Denmark. We knew school would mean our holidays were dictated so it was lovely to be able to go away without worrying.  I love to travel and having children isn't going to stop me, the boys love going somewhere new, especially if they can pack their own Trunkis.  We took a ferry over to the Isle of Wight as well for a weekend break.

October was an exciting month for Finn and I as we jetted off to Jamaica for the week and I still look back on the photos just desperate to go back.  After spending most of the summer in isolation we loved enjoying some sun (as well as the all inclusive luxury).

The lead up to Christmas seemed to be ever so long this year, but the big day still came around all of a sudden.  Ours was quieter than normal, although with three children it is never that quiet of course.  Family, food and fun were the order of the weekend and I am sure I left my parents house twice the size as when I arrived.

As the end of the year is now here, I am looking back on 2015 with pride.  We handled everything that came our way and emerged the other side stronger.  I won an award for blogging, got to visit two countries I have always wanted to see, welcomed a beautiful third boy into our family and my first baby, the one that made me a mama started school.

I know 2016 will bring its own adventures, life is never that quiet with three under five, but I don't know where it will take us yet. We are going away in January and I can't wait to see some real snow again, watch the boys learning to ski and enjoying the delicious hearty French mountain food.  2016 will see Archie getting his funded hours at nursery and Finn and I having more time together.  Dylan will go into year 1 in September  and before any of that Finn will celebrate his first birthday.  I want to start finding some time for me and am planning on taking up swimming again as I just love being in the water. 

Here are some of the photos from 2015 that really make me smile:

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