‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 #11 – {Eden’s First Shoes}

‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 #11 – {Eden’s First Shoes}

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This weeks ‘Just the 2 of Us‘ post marks a very special rite of passage for every Mother and Daughter, our very first shoe shopping expedition.  Eden’s feet are so small at nearly 16 months old and still as UK toddler 1 it is really difficult to find footwear that she can wear outdoors.  Now she’s walking it feels so unfair for her to be strapped in the buggy whenever we’re out and about, so after a recommendation from a friend we ventured to ‘Paces & Laces‘ a specialist shoe shop for children.

I had checked out their website and saw that they stocked a lot of our favourites for the girls, Lelli Kelly’s, Twinkletoes etc, so figured it was worth checking out even if they didn’t stock anything in Eden’s size.  I was so pleasantly surprised.

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They had a gorgeous little wooden train in the back room with lots of little carriages for seats.  It was such a lovely touch, Eden really enjoyed herself exploring away.  There were mirrors everywhere in which she was kissing herself (and making extra cleaning for someone – sorry), and given her teeny size, every little chair was like a mountainous challenge that she had to climb.  I was so pleased it had been recommended to us.

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Given Eden’s teeny size there were only 3 pairs that she could try on.  A beautiful pair of pink t-bar dolly shoes, but she must be like her Dad because although one fit beautifully the left shoe was far too wide.  This style would not work for our princess, not yet anyway.  The lovely owner then presented us with some NOEL boots.  There were 2 similar styles and given their small fitting they fit Eden perfectly with the right amount of room to grow.  Obviously the owner wanted to make sure she could see Eden walking before selling the shoes to us as making sure the children’s feet are ready for hard soles is  priority when buying first shoes.  It is better for children to stay barefoot as long as possible, but at nearly 16 months and being unable to join in any festivities outdoors, despite her tiny size, Eden was definitely ready.

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It took her a while to get used to having anything on her feet, but eventually she was off and showcasing that yes indeed she could infact walk.  This pair had a lovely paisley pattern on them, but I felt although these were maybe the prettier of the 2 styles and the size being exactly the same, for some reason these ones looked bigger on Eden’s feet.  I guess like an optical illusion we decided on the simpler design of virtually the same shoe.

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I took photos of both of the shoes and text Daddy at home, asking him which one, and then before he replied, knowing what he would say I asked the owner, ‘How much are they?’.  I knew that Daddy would automatically choose the cheaper option as I was a little bit torn.  I was then informed they were both the same price £47… I double checked with Nanny (James’ Mum) who always likes to buy each of the children’s first pair of shoes, if this would be ok… it was and we purchased Eden’s first shoes extremely happily.  I was still so pleased that we had discovered this little gem of a store.  I’m a huge fan of shopping small and shopping local, so it thrills me to have such a cute boutique shop that stocks all of our favourites without needing to buy online.  The shop also offers a family rewards scheme (which works well when you have as many children as we do) for every £200 accumulated you receive a £15 off voucher.  Better than a kick in the teeth as they say, and with all of ours it wouldn’t be too long before we acquire our first voucher.

Our little girl is really growing up.  She loved her shoes, wore them all day with no quarms and in the evening as we got her ready for bed, she kept trying to put them back on herself.  A very satisfied little girl.  One very happy Mummy.  A wonderful Mummy and Daughter’s first shoe shopping experience.

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If you’ve had any one on one time with any of your littlies this week, from a stolen moment to an outing, feel free to grab the badge and link up below, make sure to hashtag on twitter #justus2 and I will be able to find you and retweet…

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{The Ordinary Moments 2015} #11 – Pillow Talk

{The Ordinary Moments 2015} #11 – Pillow Talk

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This weeks photos are all taken on my iPhone as we were just hanging out in Daddy and my bedroom.  We decided we would sneak some girl time together.  We do this every once in a while but not as often as I’d like.  Normally James and I are so tired we send the children off to bed at bedtime every evening and enjoy some peace from the madness.  My sister arrived back from Australia this week and she couldn’t cope more than 20 minutes hanging out in our living room with the children all being crazy and making noise as they normally do in the day.  It’s funny what becomes our beautiful ordinary, mine is toys splayed everywhere, books being shoved in my face and Judah petitioning me for the iPad, and then crying when he’s told no.  What is it about technology and toddlers, it’s like crack to them.  Anyway, last night I decided to keep the girls up and enjoy some pillow talk in our room.

Isis is being so cuddly lately, I feel genuine love from her often these days.  It used to just feel like she loved me because I was constantly running her around to everywhere she needed to be, but as life has become calmer, she often comes and snuggles in to me, just for cuddles.  The last time I remember her doing this so affectionately was on our wedding day 3 years ago.  This epitomises her being happy to me.  I am so delighted at this, we have been on quite a journey with our eldest over the last 4 years as we worked out the kinks and found a ‘balance’ with contact between the two homes that allowed her to feel secure.  We must’ve had 5 months of calm without acting up at school now too.  This is amazing if you knew any of her story with school.  She has given me permission to blog about it if I’d like now that she’s out of the thick of it.  I didn’t feel it fair to write about her struggles whilst she was going through them as she reads this blog avidly.  After all, I blog for them.

We sat chatting about what they want to be when they grow up, here are their current options:

Isis

– a dance teacher

– a singer that goes out on gigs

Shayla-Rae

– a ballerina

– a dance teacher

– a princess

– a teenager

We were laughing about how Shayla wants to be a teenager, I explained that she would get her wish for sure with that one.  We chatted about how they need new pyjamas.  Shayla is so random, we’ll be chatting about normal things and then you hear the end of her sentence ….’wee in a pot’.  She’s hilarious, she is definitely her father’s daughter.  The vivid things she comes up with remind me so much of James.  If you’ve ever read any of his guest posts on our blog you’ll understand what I mean.

Eden’s room is the walk-in attached to our room, it has been perfect whilst she’s been small, whilst we were chatting there came a ‘Let it Go’ from her room.  Absolutely hilarious, we were all in stitches, she was nicely asleep and then just started singing, and then went back to sleep.  It was such a funny outburst.  She’s always singing at the moment, she is going to be like me.  Always singing, always humming and dancing happily away to herself and the tunes that must be whizzing around in her head.  I love that baby (well, toddler now) she is just full of joy all the time.

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Isis and Shayla tried on my engagement ring, it fit Isis’ thumb nicely haha and I’m only a size J and they started to tell me about who they wanted to marry when they grow up.

Shayla-Rae:

– her boyfriend Sean (shh…. don’t tell Daddy)

Isis winds her up by calling him ‘Sean the Sheep’, I ask Isis about boyfriends and she says all the boys at her school suck, none are worthy…. haha.

Isis:

– someone like Daddy

– someone protective

Shayla randomly kisses Isis’ foot, this is normal for our crazy household.  Isis tells her she’s strange.  We started searching for some photos of when I was younger that the girls wanted to see, we didn’t find them, but we did find an annoying toy we thought we had escaped.  It was one of those hamster toys that just moves on it’s own and makes little noises.  They thought it would be funny to put outside Martina’s door (she’s got the third floor to herself), so Shayla snuck up and put it outside her bedroom door.  It made Martina laugh, she text me thanking the girls… haha.  We then all started plotting little pranks we could pull on Martina, just being silly of course, we love Martina, this was not ‘The Sound of Music’ esque where the children want to get rid of the au pair, we were just being silly.

Isis said that we could put some of our lining wallpaper (that they use for drawing) on the wall outside her room with tears in and write (in red she specified) ‘You’re Next!’.  I asked her what crazy things she had been watching as she sounded like she could direct a horror movie with those suggestions.

We watched the slide show of the photos we took of them in their ‘World Book Day’ costumes, we had an ‘ultra hug’ like a group hug but renamed by the girls.  Isis pointed out that Shayla’s knees looked strange in the Gruffalo costume, Shayla misunderstood and thought Isis was insulting her knees in general and then retorted with ‘your knees look like a square’.

We were all having such a lovely time but it was getting later so I decided that it was time for the girls to go to bed.  We just kept chatting and we were all so comfy, they weren’t getting out any time soon, so I then proceeded to throw them out of the bed, of course safely, but they thought it was hilarious being tipped out of the bed.

Isis then proceeded to pretend that they had died and were coming back as Zombie’s to attack us for kicking them out of the bed.

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Thank you to Katie over at ‘Mummy Daddy Me‘ again for this lovely link up.  I always enjoy taking the time to remember the beautiful ordinary that occurs in our week.  Follow the badge below to see the other posts linked up.
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‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #9

‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #9

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‘Isis Mae, you’re certainly the most busy of all our beautiful children, and managing to grab a stolen moment with you proves difficult sometimes.  So, just before bed on Saturday I decided to sneak you out to MacDonald’s for a milkshake.  We had already eaten toast for dinner as we’d had a big lunch, but you managed to find room for a snack wrap and a McFlurry’.

Oh, it was nice to be able to sneak away with our eldest on Saturday.  She has been so busy with rehearsals for her first ever Pantomime and then the show was on over half term.  She has worked so hard since Christmas week when it all began with auditions, and I feel like every spare moment was spent at rehearsals.  It was worth it though, she absolutely amazed us.  Grandad (James’ Dad) couldn’t stop telling anyone who would listen about how amazing she was once he had been to see her in the show.

I really enjoyed nipping out (when really it was bedtime) just to have a little time just the two of us.  She was telling me how glad she was that rehearsals were over.  I asked if she would want to be involved in the next one if rehearsals started as early as next week (they don’t by the way, we were being hypothetical).  She said that she would go if they started tomorrow, as even though it was hard work, she LOVES being on the stage.  I guess as a parent, there’s no better answer really…not that we’re about getting her on the stage, but that she is thoroughly enjoying what she’s doing and sees the reward at the end of her efforts.  We work so hard to NOT be the pushy parents, trying to make their children do everything better than everyone else.  This is certainly not (as Judah would say) why we get her involved in these extracurricular activities.  It’s because she loves it, she thrives on it, and beams from ear to ear after each little achievement, be it a show or an exam.  She is learning the art of being satisfied as a result of her own efforts and hard work.  Her confidence has come on leaps and bounds from the shy child who would hide in the corner sucking her thumb at the age of five when I met James.

We spent some time on pinterest choosing the things we’d like to do for her Superhero themed 9th birthday party.  Check out our party planning board by clicking here.  So we’ll be making invites first and then things such as masks and backdrops for our photo booth etc. over the next few weeks.  If you’ve seen our instagram feed you’ll have seen we’ve had fun doing nails and hair too this weekend.  I love being all girlie with Isis and Shayla, and especially with Isis as she really knows her creative mind and tells me exactly what she wants.  She challenges me often.  There’s not much that I do outside of the children, laundry, cleaning etc. I work on this blog, we go to church as a family and so, I really treasure the times where we just allow time to sit and be creative playing with nail art or braiding.  It’s time to just unwind together and it allows the girls to feel special and pretty.  Even though we’re all beautiful in our own way, it’s nice to feel pampered sometimes.  Our girls would look gorgeous with scratty hair and dressed in a bin bag, but you can see the difference when they ‘feel’ extra beautiful because we took the time to do these girlie things.

Check out Isis’ amazing stage face and presenting skills on our new YouTube trailer that we filmed on Saturday.  We left it unedited and natural so you could see just how much of it is their natural ability and not just clever editing of multiple takes.

If you like following vloggers on their journey, please subscribe.  The girls know that as it stands we have 0 subscribers to our YouTube channel.  It would mean the world to them to know that any subscriptions we had were due to their amazing presenting skills.  Isis will be taking some time to film her birthday vlog soon in the lead up to her 9th birthday so you’ll be able to get to know her a little bit better through that.  We are so proud of her and all that she’s becoming, she is so helpful with her younger siblings, beautifully creative and a great character to boot.
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If you’ve had any one on one time with any of your littlies this week, from a stolen moment to an outing, feel free to grab the badge and link up below, make sure to hashtag on twitter #justus2 and I will be able to find you and retweet…

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‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #7

‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #7

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This week we had some friends staying and we only have one car.  James was, as usual, mostly at work and I was driving my friend and her family around most of the beginning of the week.  It was so lovely to have Martina working with us and know that Judah was happy playing at home.  I know what it’s like having two so close in age, so instead of throwing Martina in at the deep end I kept Eden with me as we were running errands.

Judah and Martina were able to really bond, playing with play-doh, watching Fireman Sam, Toy Story 3 and he would take a nap on the couch with her.  Martina would send me little whatsapp shots of our sleeping little man, or whatever he was up to at the time.  Nice, because I didn’t ask for this, but it does help to ease my conscience and know that he is happy.  So, I was free to just be with Eden.  Sometimes, I forget what it’s like to have just one child with me.  To be able to walk around with my baby perched on my hip and have her with me, like my little best pal.  Mothers of one child or more will remember this feeling.  Little babies are so dependent that you take them with you everywhere.  They are pretty much an extension of who you are until they old enough to go to nursery, or you return to work.  If you have more than one, you will identify with the fact (especially if you have 2 under 2 or 3 under 3) that this is never quite the same with the second, or subsequent children.  Younger siblings pretty much have to fall in line, and get on with it as they are carted around to dance recitals, school runs etc.  When Eden was less mobile she would constantly be attached to me in a sling.  It was much easier to run around after my death (just) defying toddler.  She was so small that when she got to about 10 months I realised that I should probably let her down on the floor more as I felt like I was stunting her progress.  I would almost forget she was there as she would just snuggle in and only whinge if she was hungry.

This week it was lovely to be able to have some one on one time with my baby again.  We were able to have lots of cuddles, play with toys, sing nursery rhymes.  All things we try and squeeze in normally but this time I had lots of moments over a couple of days as my friend needed to run some errands.  Even just being able to push the buggy around without constantly checking that I have three other children with me, was just so much more peaceful.  I had a little taste of what it will be like when Judah goes to nursery.  I don’t want to rush it here in any way.  I’m sad that it will all come to an end in September and I will have to start sharing my baby boy with the world, but I know that I will be able to bond with my little girl afresh in new ways.  It will be a new season in my Motherhood journey.

Eden turned 15 months this week, so I will be writing her a little letter of how much I’ve seen her change this month.  I won’t write it all again on this post.  I just loved chatting with my baby girl this week and having lots of cuddles.  If you’ve had any one on one time with any of your littlies this week, from a stolen moment to an outing, feel free to grab the badge and link up below, make sure to hashtag on twitter #justus2 and I will be able to find you and retweet…
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‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #6

‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #6

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If you follow our ‘Just the 2 of Us’ weekly link up you’ll have seen that a couple of weeks ago Shayla and I messed up our timing and were unable to go and do something fun together.  Instead our time was spent doing homework *oops*.  When I asked Shayla on Sunday afternoon what she would like to do, she said the same as a couple of weeks ago.  She wanted to go to the park, and then go and have a coffee.  She says ‘coffee’ but she means hot chocolate.  I guess she knows we go to sit in the coffee shop. I wanted to veto Shayla’s request for the park but I thought (very quickly might I add as she was searching my face for a response) you know what, she doesn’t get to go to the park very often.  This is obviously somewhere that to her is the most exciting place.  She chooses it everytime over the cinema or any other activity.  It dawned on me, with her busy first year at school, the cold winter months, and lots of dance lessons, outdoor play has been missing from Shayla’s diary for a while. So, despite the cold, off we went to the park.

I’m not the biggest fan of taking them to the Park for one on one time, as really, I don’t view it as quality time, we don’t really talk, they would just wander around playing on things and I would follow them around.  Also, I feel guilty for going somewhere I know they would all want to be, and they would play happily together with just one of them.  Now, if I was more physically able, I would probably join in on the park, but that will have to wait til my hips are better.  For now though, facilitating her imagination and just being there to catch her if she stumbles is the quality time that Shayla wants… I may want her to chat and pour out her hopes and dreams, but she’s still only 5.  Something I’m learning is that even if the children were at a more mature age and could relate to me the way I’m more adept with, doesn’t mean that this is quality time to them.  I am still new to this journey of motherhood and I am learning a lot along the way.

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It was actually really nice just following around and making sure she could explore, stretch out her muscles, knowing that if she got stuck I would be there to help her.  Climbing around on the climbing ropes showed me that she loves her independence but was looking for me as soon as the route got a bit more treacherous.  I loved watching her, she looked very Katniss Everdeen with her braids and natural outdoor abilities.  I posted a pic where she looks like she’s drawing back a bow to our Living Arrows page yesterday.

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She chose to go along the outside of the ropes and there soon became nothing to hold on to, so I held her hand as she balanced on the ropes.  She eventually fell into my arms and I explained that if she’d stayed within the confines of the ropes there would have been ropes to hold on to.  That was the architects design.  There’s a lesson in that for all of us I’m sure *winks*.

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We only stayed at the park for about 20 minutes, then she finally decided that yes, it was a bit cold.  She had tried to convince me earlier that she wasn’t cold at all.  I made sure that there was nothing left that she wanted to go on, I didn’t want her to feel disappointed if we left.  She then went off to pursue a couple more ventures, then decided, ‘yes, I am done now.’  So off we went to Starbucks for a hot chocolate and fruit tea.  I’d not been in Starbucks on a Sunday afternoon before, and especially not a cold one.  The queue was huge and there weren’t many places to sit.  A lady moved her bag though and we had the comfiest seats in the place.  Lovely, I could see the envy as Shayla sat down and I queued.  That never happens to us though, so we enjoyed the comfy chairs.

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I was irritated that I received some texts that needed dealing with whilst we sat in Starbucks.  It was a shame that I had my phone with me, but it was urgent and I needed to sort something.  I then tried to do the usual parent chat and ask her how school was going, what she was enjoying and she eventually began chattering away about the things we were planning to make next week for her school friends for Valentines Day.  Little cutie.  In the car on the way home I apologised to Shayla-Rae for needing to deal with my phone at Starbucks and she heartwarmingly replied ‘it’s ok Mummy, I had a nice time with you.  You’re still a good Mummy.’  Little sweetheart, I gave her a big kiss and a cuddle when we arrived home then out of the car and back inside to the rest of the clan.  It had been lovely to get away together, even if it was only for about an hour and a half.  I was so glad that we had found the time.
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If you’ve had any one on one time with any of your littlies this week, from a stolen moment to an outing, feel free to grab the badge and link up below, make sure to hashtag on twitter #justus2 and I will be able to find you and retweet…

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‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #4

‘Just the 2 of Us’ 2015 – #4

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Shayla-Rae and I were really looking forward to our one on one time this week.  With Isis in rehearsal every Sunday until February half-term we have been having some fun on Sunday afternoons.  This week, we had planned to set off early to collect her from rehearsal so that we could go for a coffee date together.  I love that it was Shayla’s choice to do a coffee date, she had the option of the park, cinema, any thing like that but she wanted to go and sit and have a coffee.

Well, in true Mummy mistake style, we started gathering her things for going back to her ‘other Mummy’s’ and then she informs me she has quite a lot of homework this week.  So, our quality time ended up being doing her homework.  I have realised that sometimes I don’t plan as well as I would like.  We could’ve sorted the homework so much earlier if I’d had my wits about me.

We spent our time cutting, and glueing teddy bears.  Shayla practiced writing her name out several times on a page in cursive letters (part of her homework) and I cut out all her teddy bears.  She had a sheet with 20 teddy bears, all jumbled up.  I cut them out and then she had to stick them in her book in the correct order.  This isn’t difficult for Shayla at all, but it was time consuming.  As it had got to a time where we wouldn’t be able to go anywhere before collecting Isis, we decided that we would read through her school books instead.

This really wasn’t the quality time that I had been hoping for, or eager to write about so instead above is the photo from that morning where we had gone through the McDonald’s drive thru to get a drink and a muffin whilst Daddy and Judah were in his RugbyTots class.  We had managed to steal 10 minutes sitting chilling having breakfast together (Shayla had already had toast, but the blueberry muffin was my breakfast *tut tut*) before the boys came out of their class and we went to church.  Eden was asleep in her car seat at the back.  We’d bought her a plain bagel incase she woke up, but she did not.

Hoping to have a better quality one on one time this week.  It was still nice to do her homework together though and I know those are the moments that are soon forgotten when they’re old and grown.  I’ll miss these snatches of time one day all too soon I’m sure.
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Just the 2 of Us – Week Nine

Just the 2 of Us – Week Nine

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This week we’re late posting late as we were all so unwell the past couple of weeks that stealing away any time just wasn’t possible.  We were all cooped up apart from a little walk around the Woodlands opposite our home that we chose as the set for our Siblings shoot this month.  Stolen moments with the princess is all that I have been able to manage this week.

Yesterday, Isis had an ‘eco council’ meeting with school, a child from each class was voted to represent their class and attend meetings to determine how to improve the carbon footprint from the children in the school.  Shayla and I will be using this time to hang out, the babies were asleep in the car after a busy day but I didn’t have my bank card with me so I wasn’t able to buy her a drink or anything so we just sat in the car and she read her school book to me.

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James and I had tried various different reading books, flash cards, sticker books to help Shayla to read before she went to school but she just wasn’t interested in the actual words.  She is very easily distracted and just wanted to look at pictures and enjoyed us reading to her.  She enjoyed writing and would copy letters and learn to write that way, but phonetics was just not on her radar.  I was getting to a point where I was thinking ‘should we be concerned?’ but then it was close to her starting school.  She was mostly excited about learning to read when she started school so we thought we’d see how it went.  She told us about how much she was excited to learn to read in her 5th birthday Vlog found here.

Since starting school Shayla has just taken to reading like a duck to water.  She now is reading fantastically, spelling out the phonetics and blending very easily.  It has shown me in just these few short weeks that she is a VERY quick learner and all the concerns have gone out of the window.  She adores school and is such a blessing to the teachers, often coming home telling us about various stickers, certificates and awards she’s won that day.  I am so thrilled as we were worried how she would get on as school is definitely not Isis’ favourite place.  I wrote about that on Shayla’s first day at school.  Again, Shayla has blown any concerns out of the water and is being a dream child and pupil.  She is such a delight to everyone who meets her.

I enjoy listening to Shayla read, as a teacher of children (I am a vocal coach), I am VERY familiar with working with children that want to learn and those that don’t.  Shayla definitely fits into the former category and must be amazingly easy for her teacher to work with.  After Shayla had finished her book we just chatted about various things.  I love her little random chats about the things she likes and the ideas that she has.

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messy children, donut eaters, donut lovers, dontcallmestepmummy, Krispy Kreme, blended family, step mum, just the 2 of us, justus2, mummy and daughter time
the aftermath at ‘Krispy Kreme’

Shayla and I had a quick sneaky trip to Krispy Kreme whilst Isis was in her dance class this morning.  Shayla gets a 45 minute break before she goes back for her modern class so I took her for a donut and a ‘mango cooler’ drink.  She loved her drink and made it last long after dance class, sharing it with Isis and Judah when we arrived home too.  The donut definitely did not last as long, devoured in minutes and the evidence left all over her face.  We will be changing how we do the dance run soon as Isis’ timetable will dramatically change once she’s finished these upcoming exams.  Most of our day will be spent in and around the dance school so with Daddy now only really having Saturday’s with the girls we will be going as a family to town and making it a family day in and around town.  Not the cheapest way to do things but as it warms up we’ll be able to munch a picnic in the park as opposed to having to eat out.  Also, we can take sandwiches for them to munch in the changing rooms in between classes but doesn’t make it as much like ‘family time’ that way.  We’ll have to see how it goes.
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Just the 2 of Us – Week Seven

Just the 2 of Us – Week Seven

swimming with babies
awful capture on James’ iPhone 4 whilst zooming in

Last week, Judah and Eden started swimming lessons.  This will be a regular Tuesday occurrence  Judah goes in first for an hour and Eden follows on the hour after.  This is a task I cannot accomplish on my own as someone needs to watch the other child whilst I am in the pool, I have really appreciated James being at home (still waiting for his DBS to come through for him to start work) so that we can start these routines.  Part of me is dreading him starting work as life will then be very different, but my Mum and my sister have already volunteered to help assist in Tuesday’s madness of my going to work in the morning and then the swimming lessons that follow.

Anyway, back to the swimming… it is so lovely to be able to have the quality one on one time with each of them in the pool.  Learning to swim is something that requires trust and security in the person who is holding you in the water, and although at only 10 months Eden of course has grasped this quicker, Judah (who likes to be in control) is learning to trust me.

I remember this fondly with Shayla when she was younger, she would be so secure in my arms, she caught on to swimming so quickly because she knew that I was there when she needed me.  Judah (who doesn’t even like to go on the swing as he wants to be the one to control how he moves) is slowly getting to the place of trust.  When he was younger he had no problems with anything, he trusted us implicitly.  He is now at the age of questioning everything and I was very impressed when he allowed myself and the swimming instructor at alternate times to assist him jumping into the pool.

Eden literally took to swimming like a duck to water, the instructor couldn’t believe that she’d not even been swimming before (well aside from 10 minutes in a hotel pool that was too cold back in March).  She kept referring to her as a water baby.  Also, with Eden though it is misleading as she only looks about 3 months old in size but is exactly where she should be, if not slightly ahead, as a 10 month old.  They’ve both been twice now and loved it.  Judah always seems a bit nervous at first and isn’t quite trying to maneuver himself in the water but NEVER wants to get out, and Eden just loves the lesson, and is ready to get out after an hour as she starts to get chilly then.

I am so proud of them and am really loving this quality time, I almost don’t want Judah to get independent enough to do a Stage 1 class without me, but obviously, even if I wanted to he would never be held back by me *smiles*.  For now though, this is our time.  Just Judah and I, followed by just Eden and I.  Judah also gets to go on the park for some quality time with Daddy once his lesson is finished and has been enjoying that.

Below are some snaps that Daddy captured for me of their time together munching ice-creams.

photo 1 (4) photo 4 (2)
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Just the 2 of Us – Week Five

Just the 2 of Us – Week Five

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The above photo is eery to me as it looks exactly like my sister Lauren in profile.  It makes me keep looking at it, so much so, I’m trying to remember if she had a coat like this when she was younger because it’s playing tricks with my mind.  Anyway, enough of the freaky trip down memory lane.  Last week before we had to say goodbye to the girls I managed to sneak out with little miss Isis Mae for breakfast on the beach.  It was lovely she chose a little cafe called ‘Coast‘ that is right on the stony beach (you have to walk out quite far to find sand on the beach in Worthing).

Isis decided to start making random things out of the stones that she could find, part of me wanted to say, ‘Oi no, this is supposed to be our time.’  I promptly thought to myself, she is still only 8 years old and praising her creativity is an important part of our time together, so I sat and smiled and reveled in the stone creatures that she made.

dontcallmestepmummy, blended family, just the 2 of us, justus2
this is a person… can you see it?

We chatted about random things, and she found a stone that was great for skipping on the water (you know the ones, the flat ones).  James had been searching for some a few days before and I mentioned this was the sort of stone Daddy had been after.  She kept it in her pocket and presented him with it later, bless her heart.  Isis ordered a bacon sandwich and a children’s hot chocolate with marshmallows and cream.

dontcallmestepmummy, blended family, just the 2 of us, justus2
poor Isis captured with her mouth full, can’t take me anywhere

We chatted about some personal things, as Isis is older this tends to be the case really.  Sometimes we go deeper when we have our one to one time.  Isis asks me questions sometimes about the past and I like to be honest with her, and also as tactful as possible.  There will always be two sides to every story and I would never bad mouth her Mum to her, I just tell her what I know are the facts and even all of those she doesn’t need to know.  There may have been a lot of hurt in the past between James and her Mum, but this is all past now and everyone is happy with their respective partners and the children are blessed with two families that love them very much.  This might not be the ideal but it works for now, and we’re happy to re look at it, whatever it may take if the children are at any time starting to show signs of suffering due to our arrangements.

Isis got a call on my mobile from her Nanny, she made me laugh, looking like a little office professional, working in her lunch break at the beach.

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We tried to have a wander down the beach as there are some cute art shops and designs in the little beach huts opposite this cafe but none of them had really opened at this time.  We were about to go onto the beach to find some more stones, when we remembered that they were being collect in about an hour and we all still needed to do our Ice Bucket Challenge.  So we went back to film these.  Take a look if you get chance, the girls were very brave, they did have ice in their buckets as they had wanted to.

We would normally take the time to do something more together, and I am looking forward to the future cinema trips, bowling, shopping experiences etc. where I get to spend time with each of the children as individuals but on that day, in the short time that we had, I savoured our time together.
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