Monday, 13 January 2020

Photo of the week (02/52)

It was the first week back to school last week. A lot happened in the day to day for us all but it mostly happened at home. I got up to date with most of the housework, did a good bit of blog work and plenty of planning. We also got started on the de-cluttering so we mostly stayed home, which is whyI decided to go with this photo for the week. It sums up the week pretty well with Scarlet carrying around my book for most of the week while we cleaned and sorted as much as we could.

How was your first full week of the year?
Wednesday, 8 January 2020

My hopes for 2020

I said before that I am not one to make resolutions and that still stands. I suck at making resolutions that will fade away before January is even over. Which is why I have hopes of things I want achieve throughout the year. Some of these are things I have already been working on since 2019. I'm good with the idea that I can carry on with some of the goals I had last year or ones I started towards the end of the year since I can start to change things at any time of the year. 

Start a family game night

Having family time is always important for me and while we do try to get out when we can there are plenty of days where that just isn't possible between school, after school clubs, dinner and homework which can mean we go several days without real quality time spent together without it being a walking to this activity kind of time. I want to change that in 2020 and add a weekly or even bi-weekly game night into our routine. We have lots of fun games that are perfect to play together so this year we will make good use of them! I'm actually pretty excited to make this a part of our routine. 

Spend time doing something one on one with the children more

As I said above it's easy during the week to find we are in a routine of getting everything done and not spending time together. In trying to juggle three children, housework, blogging, getting outdoors, school, clubs and homework we leave less time for each child to have time one on one and I think it's very important for them to have that. 
Life is certainly busy so I know I need to be realistic in that we really can't have an hour of one on one time everyday with everyone so I think once a week having time where Dylan and Scarlet can have time with each of us one on one doing an activity of their choice could be an idea. I will also make up a little activity jar for days when they can't decide what they want to do. Avery does tend to have a bit more one to one time as Dylan and Scarlet go off and play alone or together every day.

Keep on top of the housework

So I'm not great at keeping everything on the to-do list going at the same time. There's usually a massive pile of washing that needs sorted out (still got one of those right now!), an area of the house I completely neglected (usually the shoe boxes in the hall) or the washing machine needs a good scrub on the inside. The jobs everyone seems to neglect every now and then are somehow always needing done. This year I want to try to make a routine of doing the housework for every day. If I do the general stuff everyday including the washing and shoe sorting I hope that it won't take as long and I will find time for the less often but equally import jobs like cleaning the washing machine. 
If you've got any tips let me know in the comments.

Declutter the house and organise

As a bit of an addition to the point above I want to try to continue with de-cluttering. We have quite a bit and as time moves I am slowly getting through more and more but there is still a fair bit to go. This is one of those things that has carried through several years now and each year I have got more and more clutter out. The problem is we are a big family and our needs are changing often. Through regular sorting and de-cluttering we can probably get the whole house to be more organised, at least I hope so!

Try new meals and recipes

We can get stuck in a rut when it comes to dinner meals. We tend to do meal planning and buy what we need, however I have found that through doing that we just have the same meals every two weeks rather than changing it up. It can be hard to change up our eating habits too, Dylan can be quite picky to what he will try. Despite that this year I hope to work a little more on getting new recipes we can all try. We have a slow cooker now too so there should be plenty of delicious winter recipes I can whip up in there first thing in the morning on busy days.

What's your families favourite recipe?

Blog regularly and Stay on top of my emails 

So you may have noticed I suck at regularly blogging for long periods of time, life gets busy and sometimes blogging has to take a back seat. I'm not saying that won't happen this year but I want to work harder at being regular and getting some blogging done in advance. I will be getting myself a diary soon and when I have done I will work on filling in my regular blogging posts. I plan to keep up with being organised and having other posts bullet pointed into a notebook which I have already started. 

Redecorate the hall and bathroom

Okay so this final one also comes with a bit of a confession, We've never redecorated these rooms, we moved in 4 years ago now. When we first moved the bathroom was painted with one coat, it was rushed on the night before we had to move in and it was never finished, the top cutting in was never done and we have since found out we used the wrong pot of paint anyway! I'm currently considering using a paint remover and starting from scratch as well as giving all the walls a good wipe down before we repaint. 

The hall is another project we started four years ago (after we'd moved in) discovered a few issues and have never finished. It originally had wall paper which was dated and already coming off. Back when my brother lived with us we spent a few days pulling off a lot of the paper by hand and with the wall steamer but there had been several layers and eventually I just gave up. It has since stayed unfinished and it is firmly on the list of things to do. Hopefully it will be done this year!

That is it, these are the things I want to try to achieve this year when I can, some will be started now,some have began and others will take a back seat for another time in the year. There may even be some I don't get to but I want to try. 

You might have noticed that there isn't any hopes for changing me this year, last year I shared a little about taking a body positive journey and how it has changed me so far. I plan to continue with being more positive and happy in myself so I won't be making plans to change anything other than how I view myself. I hope that by 2020 I will be more confident and maybe there will be fewer bad days too.

Have you got any hopes you want to try to achieve in 2020?
Tuesday, 7 January 2020

All about my year 2019

The last two years I have shared my All about my year 2017 and All about my year 2018. I quite enjoy writing these posts and it's a really nice way to reflect back on the year

I do hope that everyone had a lovely Christmas and New Year even if that now feels like it was a million years ago. 

1. What did you do for your birthday this year? 

I had the most boring birthday ever this year, we went out and did our big Christmas food shopping and I rushed around trying to post out our Secret Santa gifts! There's always next year right?

2. Whats the biggest thing to happen to you this year? 

It would definitely be giving birth to Avery in May this year! He was the last little piece of us we didn't even know was missing. I haven't yet shared my Birth story with Avery but that is something I hope to do in 2020. 

3. What was the biggest thing to happen for your child/children this year? 

The biggest thing to happen for both Dylan and Scarlet in 2019 was becoming big brother and Sister to Avery. Dylan has been super excited to now have his own brother and not just be a brother. Scarlet has become an amazing big sister and throughout 2019 was so excited about having another baby then helping look after Avery. 

I think another really big thing that happened for Dylan this year was that he attended a summer scheme for the first time. He went to one with his friends from his usual after school club so he had plenty of friends to enjoy time with over the summer! He is already talking about going back next year too.

For Scarlet I think another big thing that has happened during 2019 was turning two! For Scarlet this is the first birthday she has kind of understood that it isn't just a normal day, she knew there would cake, presents, balloons and lots of fun. She loved being the centre of attention for the whole day.

Avery on the other hand was born and started to have solid foods at 6 months old in 2019. He loves food and exploring through his weaning journey so far.

4. Could you pick a favourite week of the year? 

I honestly don't think I could. There have been many weeks I have loved this year, when Avery was born, Several weeks over the summer where we met friends, had days out and enjoyed time together. I hope that 2020 will hold some great weeks too. 

5. Do you have a favourite photograph of yourself from 2019? 

I do, this one above of me and Scarlet together, we'd spent the day out at the Botanical Gardens and I asked Simon to take some photographs of just me. In the end there are several with both Dylan and Scarlet as well as with each of them alone. I think these mean more to me than the ones where I am alone and this one in particular is actually when I thought Simon had finished and we started walking to get off the grass. I love it, it's natural and was just the capturing of a moment together. 

6. What was your best day out? 

The best day out we had this year was for me when we took a trip in the afternoon to see C.S.Lewis square before heading on to the new Stormont estate park that opened in the summer.It was way after bedtime before we had even started the journey home but it was so nice to spend the evening having fun and being carefree. It was a day where we used the bus so it was just me and all three children on my own. It certainly didn't deter me and was the first time I took everyone out without help!

7. What is the best film you have seen this year? 

Toy Story 4! We all loved it and enjoyed having time together out at the cinema. It's still a favourite now.

8. Is there anything you wish didn't happen this year? 

I do wish that I hadn't lost two grandparents in the space of a week over the end of October and beginning of November. It was a hard way to end 2019 and something I think I am still coming to terms with now. 

9. What would you like to achieve or improve for 2020? 

I do have a few hope for 2020 but the only thing I really want to 'achieve' is to finally finish decorating the hall and bathroom! I will be sharing more on what I hope to do throughout 2020, some had already started last year too.

10. How will you be celebrating/did you celebrate New Years Eve?

We celebrated how we always do, sat on the sofa together with at least one sleeping child between us ringing in the new year with Big Ben fireworks on TV and singing Old lang syne out of tune and  completely out of time.In fact Simon doesn't even know the words. It was perfect!
Monday, 6 January 2020

Photo of the week 1/52

Happy New Year! 
I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and enjoyed some time with their friends and family. We've enjoyed our time together while Dylan was off school and have managed a day out as well as a cinema trip. I have chosen a photo I took on the first day of the year before we headed out to see Frozen 2. Definitely worth a watch if you haven't seen it! We all loved it, even Simon which is really saying something.

Today marks the beginning of a new term, the end of the Christmas holidays and the start of getting a routine back in place. 

How has the Christmas break and New Year been for you?

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