Choosing a baby name // Toby

Choosing a baby name is possibly one of the most difficult decisions you’ll have to make. I always like to hear stories about how people chose their baby’s name so I thought I’d share with you how we found Toby’s name.

Tiny Toby baby

Before we had the 20 week scan and found out we were having a boy I had already thought of lots of names I liked but most of them were girls’ names. After the scan I still kept coming up with girl’s names but couldn’t really find any inspiration for boys’ names. There are so many things to think of when choosing a name for your baby and we knew there were a few things that were important to us… Read more

Siblings // Toby and Gabe in May (2017)

If you read my Siblings post last month (or any of my many Instagram updates on the subject) then you will know that the constant bickering between Toby and Gabe has been driving me insane… but I think we may be finally seeing the light.

They still fight like crazy but there seem to be a few more moments of playing together – Toby has realised that he can make Gabe laugh, and is also taking great pleasure in trying to teach him new words. The other morning over breakfast we were trying – ‘Gabe say apple’, ‘Gabe say mummy’, Gabe say ‘flamingo’ – I think that last one might have been a step slightly too far!

This month’s Siblings photos are just a random selection that I’ve taken since last month’s update. First up this one when we got the water table out for the first time this year. This one is actually pretty good because they can have a side each, although after a few minutes they were both just filling cups from a bucket and pouring them over the garden.

Toby and Gabe playing at the water table together

I took this next picture when we went to feed the ducks the other week. Read more

Living Arrows 20/52 (2017)

It’s been another uneventful week this week, although I have no idea where time is going at the moment, it’s just absolutely flying by!

Toby’s photo this week was taken when I was trying to get some pictures for my What Toby Wore post. He’s going through a phase of not really wanting to pose for photos, and if he will stand still he just pulls silly faces. So I got him to go to the far edge of the garden, put the camera in sport mode, got him to run towards me, kept pressing the shutter and hoped something would turn out at least in focus!

And I got this…

Toby running at the camera in the front garden

I think I’ll be trying the run at the camera and hope method again! Read more

What Toby Wore // Indikidual & Turtledove London

I’m back with another What Toby Wore post today. When Toby was about 10 months old I came across a whole world of fabulous kids clothes beyond the high street and the supermarket, where most of his clothes came from up to that point. I can’t really remember how I discovered them but suddenly I fell down the rabbit hole of independent retailers and boys clothes that weren’t all blue and grey!

One of the first things I bought from an independent retailer was these Indikidual banana leggings from the lovely Jenny at KyNa Boutique. And the fab thing about buying from independent retailers is that you get a really personal service. The clothes always arrive beautifully packaged, super quickly, and postage and packing is usually free!

Baby Indikidual banana leggings

So anyway, it was a sad day when Toby grew out of these leggings Read more

Family Days Out // Brock Bottom, Lancashire

Not far from the A6, between Garstang and Preston you will find Brock Bottom picnic site. It’s a name I remember from my childhood and I’m sure I must have been there before but I don’t remember it. We are always looking for new places to explore with the boys so armed with a picnic and the camera we set off on Sunday to see what was there.

Brock Valley Stone plaque

Unfortunately the information board which should have been on this stone was missing but if had been there it would have told us that this was the site of Brock Mill, a cotton mill built in the 1790s, along with 20 workers’ cottages. We actually didn’t see the remains of the mill as we set off in the opposite direction but I’m sure we’ll find them next time.

There is quite a small (but free) car park at Brock Bottom which was full when we arrived. We didn’t have to wait long for someone to leave so we could get a space though. There are a fair few picnic tables around the edge of the car park, and they all have a metal plate on the end where you can use disposable barbecues. On the disposable note though, there are no bins in the picnic area so be prepared to take your rubbish home with you. Read more

#VLOGSTARS // 6 things that wind me up

I’ve been meaning to join in with the Vlog Stars linky for the last few months but haven’t quite managed to get round to it…until now! I’m going to let the video talk for itself but basically I’m having a bit of a rant about 6 things that really wind me up.

I’ve not done many of these talking to camera vlogs before and I’m still learning. I’ve still got a way to go before I get my set up right but it’s all good practice right?

Anyway, enough waffling – here it is…

Linking up with Colette at We’re going on an adventure and Katy at What Katy Said

Things that wind me up / Vlogstars video

Remembering Childhood // It’s just me Hayley D

It’s that time of week when another blogger is going to be sharing their childhood memories. This week’s Remembering Childhood comes from Hayley at It’s just me Hayley D.

Which decade were you born in?

The best decade obviously, the 1980s.

It's just me Hayley D

What is your earliest memory? How old were you?

My earliest memory is when I was at nursery school, I must have been about 3 or 4 years old. I remember playing in the sandpits and wearing a red jumper. Oh how I loved how the sand squished through my fingers.

What was your favourite toy at 5 years old? At 10?

Read more

10 things that make me happy

I was tagged (ages ago now) by Tasha from Mummy & Moose to write about 10 things that make me happy. You would think this should be pretty easy but I’ve actually found it quite difficult to think of ten things, that aren’t all food! (N.B. Some of them are food)

I’m just going to launch right in with this, so here goes…

Sleep

I love sleep. I always have. Well, according to my mum I didn’t sleep until I was three but after that I have always loved sleeping. I have also inherited from my dad the ability to sleep anywhere at any time. Before the boys arrived and stole all my sleep away from me I loved nothing more than a long lie in, and then maybe an afternoon nap too. If I was on a long journey whether by car, train or plane, I would just sleep to pass the time. I used to fly from Edinburgh to London quite a lot and had perfected my technique of falling asleep before take off and waking up when the wheels hit the tarmac at the other end.

So I love sleep which is why the last four years have been so hard. I am hoping one day my kids might actually sleep all night and I can indulge in my love of sleep once again.

Family days out

Family day out at Grizedale Forest

Days out with a preschooler and a toddler are not always stress-free. Read more

Living Arrows 19/52 (2017)

We enjoyed another bank holiday weekend last week – in his old job Barry didn’t have to take bank holidays off so would often work them to save the annual leave for other times but now he has to take them and it’s actually quite nice to be forced to have some extra family time!

Last Saturday we went to the SEA LIFE Blackpool and had a lovely time seeing all the fish and other creatures. We had a day at home on Sunday with a visit from my in-laws and so on Monday we were all in need of some fresh air and time out of the house.

We drove over to the next village – it’s very picturesque with a village green that has a duck pond and a cricket pitch. We actually put an offer on a house there when we were moving but someone beat us to it! Anyway, just because we don’t live there doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it, although this was the first time we’d actually been there.

Gabe watching the ducks with daddy

We took some birdseed for the ducks Read more

Giveaway // Monski Mouse Baby Disco Dance Hall tickets

Back in the summer of 2014 when Toby was just one we reviewed Monski Mouse’s Baby Disco Dance Hall at the Edinburgh Fringe.

Monski Mouse Baby Disco

Since then Monski Mouse has appeared at the Underbelly Festival in London, Brighton Festival, and been back to Edinburgh (among others) and this year she is back again.

Producer, mother of two and DJ, Monski Mouse first launched her show in response to becoming a mother after ten years of DJ-ing at clubs, festivals and events in Australia in 2012.

‘The massive lifestyle change involved in becoming a Mum, led me to look for an option to continue to work as a DJ without the 1am starts. It turns out I absolutely love performing for the 0-5 age group, it is such a blast and the show has catapulted my career far ahead of where it was before.’ says, Monski Mouse.

Set in the beautiful 1920’s spiegeltent, with it’s circular wooden dance-floor, Monski Mouse’s Baby Disco Dance Hall makes a point of creating a space and experience appropriate for the 0-5 age group and their parents/carers. Playing a selection of retro hits and children’s music, Monski Mouse and her Dancers, encourage parents/carers to party and play hard with their little ones, while they are still young enough to not be embarrassed by ‘dad-dancing’ or the ‘mum-step’.

Monski Mouse

We had a brilliant time when we went to the Baby Disco Dance Hall and we would love to go again but London is a bit of a trek for us….so instead I’ve got a family pass for the May Bank Holiday to give away so you can go and see Monski Mouse instead (and tell me all about it!). The family pass includes four tickets (one of whom must be a child) to the disco on either Sunday 28th May at 3pm or for Monday 29th May at 1pm (you can choose which date you would prefer). All you need to do to enter is complete the Rafflecopter below. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway ends midnight Sunday 21st May

Winner will be contacted by email and must respond within 24 hours or another winner will be picked

Open to UK residents aged 18 or over