Wednesday, 4 March 2015

disconnecting to reconnect

it seems a cliche but it is so true... sometimes you really have to disconnect from life a bit in order to reconnect.

every year we try to get away for a few days off the beaten track with little or no electricity and no access to mobile phones or laptops.  it used to be wild camping, just me, my husband and our dog.  then kids started arriving and now it is more glamping than roughing it! but the effect is still the same...

so this year is our ten year wedding anniversary and we decided to do something really special. just the two of us. so the kids and the dog got a lovely spoilt rotten trip to granny and grampas and we headed north...

sam found this lovely remote self catering converted wagon on the banks of loch voil in the trossachs - pilot panther

we had all weathers but with our cosy blankets and the log burning stove we barely noticed... even when it started to snow on the last day.

pilot panthers location also has the benefit of being a five minute walk from the amazing monachyle mhor with it's fine dining and luxury accommodation.  so we retreated there one night for our evening meal and again for breakfast on our last morning. delicious.

and okay, a sneaky use of the hotel wifi...

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

reduce, reuse, recycle

this year i have decided that we need to be more organised, more waste aware and fitter.

lately i feel like we have slipped back into a world where i didn't think about consequences of my actions.  we are so caught up with daily life that i find myself doing whatever option is easiest ~ putting the extra few cartons of milk in the bin to save me going downstairs to the recycling boxes. buying a bag of apples instead of buying them loose... i have even stopped using my cloth nappies and wipes.

you see, my sons skin is very sensitive. we really only use eco eggs and occasionally a bit of lavender oil for fragrance but lately his nappies have been causing very sore nappy rash so we stopped for a while... but that while has become a month... almost two.

i missed the freshly washed smell of washing. i missed the clean smell of bleach ~ these have all snuck back into my cleaning cupboard.

i just want to get back to my frugal self... i want to be that person again! so the challenge is on... will keep this blog updated with my progress...

so far i have got out the cloth wipes, cotton hankies and nappies.  i have made a huge batch of bath bombs for the kids baths ~ method

feeling better already!

Saturday, 10 January 2015

we moved house

we were busy bees this summer, we managed to pack up home and move near the sea... just like we always wanted.

it's a bigger house with a bigger garden. and we are five minutes walk from the sea, poppy's school, all the main shops and cafes and an amazing play park.  it has been the best decision we have made so far {except the decision to have children of course... and to get married... ok, the third best decision}

so we have been busy moving and filling our home with stuff and most of all we have spent a lot more time doing things... so many projects... so many crafts!

during the move we decided to de-clutter. everything. and we also decided to make the things we already had, nicer! so plenty of up cycling going on here too!

first of the projects was the kids craft cart. we decided to collect all the broken crayons together and make nice new shiny ones...

step one ~

fill a silicone baking tray with all the ends of crayons (wrappers off) you can make them all the same colour/shade or you can go multicoloured.  melt them in the oven for about five ~ ten minutes on 180. and leave out to cool {i found that giving them a stir at this point stopped the wax and colour separating}

step two ~

tip them out!

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

my not so little boy turned two

so two years have passed since i gave birth to my little man... my amazing and loving boy... two years.

it feels like a blink, like a heart beat. i can still remember the dark birthing pool and the low music playing. my head resting on the side of the pool while my husband lay a cool facecloth on my neck. i still remember the sinking feeling when i was told i was only 3cms... the memories of poppy taking days and days to get from 3cms to 10cms.... then it was all over, in not much more than an hour. i felt i had to push. to meet him. and i did. he was so lovely and so like poppy. he looked at me from the water and he felt weightless. i stood up to carry him to the bed and suddenly felt his weight! 9lbs 9oz. such a big boy but so small...

now two years on and he is still so small to me, still so precious.

we had some friends round to play and we set up some messy tubs in the garden for them to muck about with... dinosaurs in ice eggs, shaving foam and another with moon sand.  they loved it ~ of course! the perfect thing for a 2 yr old boy ~ mess.

the dinosaurs were the best bit, i put them in balloons and filled them with water, then put them in the freezer overnight. in the morning i peeled off the balloons and sat them in a bowl with wee pots of warm water, salt and beetroot juice.  i gave them syringes and small spades and other tools to free the dinosaurs from their eggs!

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

it's been a while...

it has been months since i sat down and wrote anything, far less published it.  i guess i kind of lost the momentum of taking time to put things down... i lost the urge to take the time for me.

so, with a quiet house and a cosy blanket on my knees, i am finally getting back into it...

what have i been doing with my time? it's actually pretty hard to say {as most stay at home/work at home mums can often be heard muttering} i go about my daily routine {or lack of it}

we get up
we play
we eat breakfast
i clear up, put a wash on {or not}
get dressed {or not}
get the 2yr old and the almost 5yr old out of the door to walk the dog
make it as far as the end of the park
walk back
nursery run
2yr old takes a nap
housework/work on the computer/make telephone calls/watch mind numbing daytime tv {delete as appropriate}
2yr old wakes up
nursery run
play for a bit
bath or a bit more playing
stories... lots and lots of stories
bed for small people
tv/computer/tidy up
bed for adults

you see... not much... but yet so much.

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

dear fergus

hello wee guy! you are 18 months and 3 weeks old and have become the most charismatic and cute little person! you say daddy, mama, poppy and lily with such clarity and sing us songs and give us amazing hugs and blow us kisses... your big white teeth are really coming in and you smile with an intensity and so freely that it's hard not to smile back. at bedtime you ask to go 'upstairs', you say 'grandpa', 'up', 'please', 'more', 'eat', 'car' and 'duck duck'. when you dance you press one ear to your shoulder and spin around. and when you get mad you are so hard to console, you feel things so wholeheartedly. and that's okay because that is who you are; you are sensitive and emotional, playful and charming. you are cheeky and adventurous, caring and empathetic.
our daily routine revolves around poppys nursery drop off but you don't seem to mind. you spend your days immersed in play, chasing your big sister and your best friend, the dog! you love poppys 'big baby', books and your pull along dog. you love to sing and can sing twinkly twinkle, happy birthday (which sounds more like happy daddy!) and the chorus to golden slumber!
fergus, we love you and cant wait to watch you grow into the man you are going to be.

Friday, 9 May 2014

monkeys, lions and a surprise rainbow

back in march it was my little girls 4th birthday. four. i have no idea where the time has gone! to mark the occasion we decided a trip to the zoo was in order... ten years of living in edinburgh and not one visit to the zoo (except as a photographer)!

i baked a cake. this cake. and i made a hole in the middle which i filled with m&ms before icing it.

i decided that there was a lot of colouring involved in the making of this cake and that i would make the layers using natural colours found in food... so i used grated carrot, juiced spinach, juiced beetroot, egg yolk and blueberry puree. making the colours was a lot of fun and poppy really enjoyed helping me with this bit! she was off to bed for the actual cake making though...

the zoo is a great place to visit with children, plenty to keep them occupied, lots of space to run wild, toilets dotted around and best of all it's fun for adults too :)

it was a really fun day and the sun even came out for a wee bit so we could enjoy our birthday picnic, cake and bubbles! we all knew it was time to go home when poppy dropped her beloved pink rabbit into the penguin enclosure and cried like she had lost the love of her life. a very lovely young man leaned over and saved him for her and thus saved the day!