Sunday, 14 October 2018

Technology in their Lives

These children of mine are growing up in a very different world to the one I did.  I was only 23 when I had Dylan but those 23 years have seen the rise of technology in every aspect of our life and a change to the childhood I remember and loved.

It isn't their fault that they want to play on the ipad as soon as they wake up, watch their favourite tv programs on demand, ask Alexa every time they get curious about something and spend more time staring at a screen than they do looking at someone's face.  These things just weren't an option for us as children and I am sure if they were then we would have been the same.

I remember having children's TV only for a few hours each day and we got our first family computer when I was at secondary school, but the internet had to be unplugged every time someone needed to use the home phone (and my mum did a job that meant she was often on the phone in the evenings).   Nowadays it is hard to avoid and I can see my children falling into this world before I am ready for them to.

As the parent, I am tying to navigate this stage of parenting and find balance for them where they can't always find it themselves.  Technology is going to be such a big and unavoidable part of their lives, more so than it is for us now I imagine and they need to know how to use it responsibly and in moderation, but I think just as importantly, if not more so, they need to learn how to use their imaginations.

The navigation isn't always easy, but technology is and I know they can be occupied for hours with an ipad or netflix.  I am trying to encourage more free play to balance it though and many of their toys have been packed away in favour of wooden ones which even the bigger boys are suddenly discovering again and enjoying.  A new bed arrived this week in several huge cardboard boxes and I set them out on the decking and encouraged them to just play and the ease with which they did reassured me.

They were ramps for cars, slides for people, car parks, colouring books and all sorts.  Their play changed and progressed, they communicated and imagined and reminded me that even when we feel stuck in an end of term rut where everyone is tired and sometimes technology can be the easiest option, their biggest talent is their mind at this age.

I hope I can continue to balance their lives and help them explore their imaginations, appreciate nature and climb trees.  I want their childhoods to be wild and free and full of sunshine and laughter and I know that at 7 I probably don't have many more years of Dylan still just playing but I am going to try as hard as I can to encourage him to.

How do you balance the lure of technology with a playful childhood? I would love any tips

balancing technology, technology and children,

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Thursday, 4 October 2018

What the Kids Wore // Milly'o

For two years, these two little people have been inseperable.  They have an amazing bond and I still think of them as very close but with Finn being at nursery for three days a week now, I can see how things are changing between them.  

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

Cora is at an age where she is developing her own friendships and is forming relationships with others and Finn has a busy life away from her with his friends at nursery.  Their interests are changing as they grow and as we start preparing Finn for school next year I think the age gap may widen a little too.

But for now, they are so excited to see each other after a day apart and neither of them have any interest in me, only in each other.  They run for a cuddle as soon as they see each other and they still love to play together (as long as Cora isn't messing up Finn's games). We still have two days a week just the three of us and I hope they can continue to stay close as I love watching their interactions and their love.  

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

And of course I still love 'twinning' them when I can.  They both have their own styles so it is more about co-ordinating them and we were sent these trousers for Cora and the jumper for Finn from Milly'o.  Milly'o makes bespoke kids clothing in a range of unique prints and playful styles that allow children to move freely and are easy to care for.  

The woodland creatures have metallic masks and can be cuffed in a choice of colours.  Cora is wearing size 18-24 month trousers here which are a great fit (her usual size) and Finn's jumper is age 3-4 and a little smaller than he needs really so I would suggest sizing up in jumpers.  The trousers would be a great cut for cloth nappies with the harem style, although Cora is out of nappies now.  Milly'o also makes beautiful rompers and bibs and I am in love with the whales print. The trousers start at £14 and jumpers are around £20 which is what I expect to pay for hand made clothes and I love having something unique for my children.

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

milly'o, handmade children's clothes,

We were sent these clothes from Milly'o for the purpose of this review 
but all thoughts and opinions are my own

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Tuesday, 2 October 2018

An Ordinary Autumn Day

At the start of every new season I think I declare it my favourite and I think it is seeing the world through a child's eyes that allows it.  Whilst summer meant long days out, dinner at the beach, bare foot and six weeks of having all four along, Autumn has so much colour and charm.  Cosy nights in, hot chocolate, not having to wash my hair so much because it is hat weather and Halloween. 

We have planned a few quiet weekends to relax as the transition back to school (and the multiple school runs) seems to be tiring for us all but we still need to get out and run off the energy so we visited our favourite park this weekend to hunt for conkers, play cops and robbers (the boys new favourite game) and watch the squirrels.  

It was nearly a year ago that I took some photos of them all in this same place with a blog post titled ' I think we are done' and looking back at it I can see firstly how much they have all grown, especially Finn and secondly how much I still believe what I wrote.  We no longer have cribs or cots, the nappies have gone other than a night nappy for Cora and she isn't in the pushchair often anymore.  This next stage is certainly no less exhausting than the newborn one but it is exciting and full of promise.

On our visit to the park this weekend the children all played so independently.  The boys ran around playing, Cora climbed and conquered, they hunted, they chatted and I know they appreciated our company, but they didn't need us in the same ways they did even a year ago.  

Four is our number and a year after I initially wrote it, I am still definitely done. 

I want to continue to photograph and document the ordinary days as a family of six and I love these photos as they are exactly that.  It was a simple day, we went to the park, ran around for a few hours and then went home. Perfectly normal, perfectly us. 

Taken by Dylan!

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Monday, 1 October 2018

What Archie Wore // Nununu

Archie doesn't get as much space on the blog anymore, something that is more his choice than mine.  Archie at five is very capable of telling me when he wants his photo taken and when he doesn't and he shares his opinions freely.  Choosing to work with a brand on a review where he is involved is a difficult decision as I know he needs to love whatever it is to consent to being photographed.  We have worked with Nununu a few times now though and I know how much he loves their clothes so I was pretty confident that when this outfit arrived for him he would manage a pose or two.

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu clothing has an edge to it.  With a mostly monochrome pallet it isn't our normal style but I think it suits Archie so much and he loves the skater look.  His favourite trousers are currently his Nununu leggings but I chose these french terry dropped crotch trousers this time as they are a bit thicker for winter.  They are lovely and warm with pocket details on the back and fun skulls on the knees.  Archie is in between sizes really (he is a perfect 5-6 and Nununu do 4-5 and then 6-7) so we sized up and I can see he will get plenty of wear from them.  The jumper is going to go with so much this winter and it would look great with his leggings.  Archie loves the thumb holes on the sleeves, something he hasn't had before! Most of the collections past and present are very interchangeable and Dylan has the joggers in the same star print from a couple of years ago.

The hat completes the outfit and is thick and lined too.  I love this outfit on Archie and more importantly, he loves it too - enough to pose for a photo and even smile! It suits him so well even if he does look 5 going on 15 in it!   The clothes may look grown up but they are made to play in and are well designed and really hard wearing.  The boys have been wearing Nununu for years and everything is still in amazing condition. They move well, they don't restrict them and the

If you are looking for something a bit different then Nununu caters from newborn to 14 years and you can find all the new season on their website.

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu, kids fashion blogger,

Nununu provided us with a voucher to buy these items
 but all thoughts and opinions are completely our own.
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Sunday, 30 September 2018

Me and Mine in October

Goodbye September, Hello October and all things Autumn.  The sandals are still on the shoe rack, begging to be worn one last time but the boots are on and I have been eyeing up slippers ready for the colder nights.  September was back to normality and routine after a long summer and it has seen four children all having simultaneous growth spurts.  Our photos are last minute and slightly out of focus but most of us look happy so I am calling them a win.

I feel like September has been the most tiring month so far this year as the new daily routine with three drops offs before walking to playgroup, three pick ups and then after school clubs has been challenging and it has taken me a while to get used to it all.  The boys are all really settled in their classes and schools now though and Cora has stopped asking for Finn every two seconds and started enjoying time on her own (although she has replaced him with a friend most of the time!).

This month I have loved seeing the Harry Potter plays in London,  buying Winter clothes for everyone, a girls night out with cocktails and having some time with just Cora.

Ed has loved having fewer wasps around, having a quiet month, Finn's jelly dance and a night out with friends that he doesn't see as often anymore.

Dylan has loved starting junior school, board games club, swapping bedrooms with Finn and having dried mango in his lunchbox.

Archie has loved playing on the tablet at any opportunity, after school playdates with his friends, snuggling under blankets now that the weather has got colder and collecting Lego cards 

Finn has loved getting to take a lunchbox to nursery, sleeping in the bunk beds with Archie, going on the rides at 'So Organic' festival and playing with the search and find books we have

Cora has loved playing with her little cousin on Wednesdays, being back at playgroups, her princess nightie that she was bought for her birthday and reading all the books.

Welcome October!

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