Love · Mums · Parenting · Thankful · Uncategorized

This Love

From the moment I brought you into this world I knew I would do anything for you. The pain I was going through to get you was nothing like I had ever felt before and I knew I would keep going because it was for you. That moment I looked into your eyes and got lost in those big beautiful pools of blue staring up at me, while asking why you weren’t crying like I thought you should be. Because she’s happy I was told. 

From that moment I was finally left alone with you and I knew you were mine to keep and that fear and panic crept in, no matter how many books I had read I still had no idea what to do with you! From then I knew I would try my damn hardest to do my best for you even when I didn’t know what I should do for the best. From the moment I made my first choice on how to parent you and held you close all night in that hospital I knew I would keep you close forever. 

When I first saw you smile at me and hold your arms out I knew it was because you felt the same. I was your comforter, protector and guardian and you felt safe with me and always will.

I’ve watched you fall over and I’ve picked you up. I’ve taught you rules I can’t remember ever not knowing. I’ve given you knowledge and shown you how to love. I’ve created friendships for you that have grown over the years. You have learned how to make people laugh and how to comfort them when they are sad. You know the value of money and have known when I’ve had limitations I’ve still always done my best to give you happy memories.

You know the difference between right and wrong and watch the news intently pointing out the wrong in this world and questioning me as to why it happens. My beautiful girl I wish I could hold you tight forever and it makes me so sad that one day you will grow into a woman and show all this to a family of your own. I long for these times but I also long for my baby to stay in my arms for ever. I’m torn between wanting you to continue to grow and nurture you through life’s experiences and keeping you small and protecting you forever. This love is endless and so for now I will keep you close and have another girls night and sleepover in my bed and wake up being smothered in kisses and cuddles for you are and always will be my angel, my perfect girl, my best friend, Tiana x

body confidence · exercise · fitness

Exercise and me!

I have never been the sporty type, through school I wasn’t in any teams and didn’t play any sport that wasn’t part of the PE lesson. Since school I have dipped in and out of exercise regularly. Since school I’ve been a member of a two different gyms, owned 4 different workout dvds, done a bit of running,  watched countless YouTube workouts and followed a few fad diets. 
My workout interest usually depends on the goal. I need a goal to work towards, just being fitter and healthier isn’t enough for me. Last year it was my wedding and honeymoon and right now it’s my holiday in June.

I’m not a natural sports person, running is not something I particularly enjoy or am fast at and I don’t usually look forward to a workout so the reason I do this is purely just to feel good about myself. I’m not bothered what size clothes I wear or what other people think of my size, shape or fitness level I just like to feel body confident in myself. This is something I’ve struggled with in the past but if I know I have worked hard and am in good shape I have no problems feeling confident and happy about myself.

At the minute I’m using my kettle bell to workout, it’s a 6kg bell and I use a dvd to complete a 30 minute workout twice a week. One is more cardio and one focuses on abs. I’ve recently been using Scott’s 10kg bell for some of the ab exercises too just to really push myself.  Along with walking Poppy every day for 20 minutes and now my walking club every Friday I think this is a good start for me feeling good for summer!

Im like most people though if I don’t eat well I will put on weight. Usually after Christmas I will always have gained a few pounds, cheese and chocolate every day for a week will do that to your waistline, but this year I had my braces fitted in December so for the first time after Christmas I had actually lost weight! I’m eating normally again now and there are only a few things I struggle with but thankfully I seem to be a steady weight so my aim for my exercise is purely to try and improve my fitness levels with that end goal in mind of climbing Scafell Pike next year!

I’ve been back in my fitness regime for 4 weeks now and am feeling better for it already. I plan to keep it up to do the best I can to feel body confident in myself. It is true what they say when it comes to fitness hard work really does pay off so I plan to continue until I get the results I’m looking for! 

Family · Mums

Why mothers day is special to me

So today was Mothers day and I have had a wonderful day just being spoilt by my little person. T has always loved Mothers day and I love the excitement she has for the day. All week her and Scott have been having secret talks always and today they did not disappoint, along with a beautiful plant and chocolates I got a notebook to plan my adventure to Scafell Pike in,a beautiful pendant with separate charms inside each with a special meaning, (there is a T, a heart with Mum engraved on it, the word love and a mother holding a child), and 3 beautiful cards. 

The excitement started when she went to sleep last night with everything hidden under her bed and this morning it all came into our room so I could open everything in bed. She wouldn’t tell me what we were doing until we were ready to leave and then when we got back she wouldn’t tell me where we were going next! The whole idea of her planning little surprises for me all day is just special and I feel so lucky she has Scott to help her pull them all off. 

After coffee and a cake we planted a tree in our garden that we all chose together at our local garden centre, it has a pretty pink blossom and I’m so happy with the space it fills in our garden. Then we had a bike ride round our local country park we enjoyed a family roast at my in laws house. Once T was back here in bed asleep I even got to watch a bit of Coyote Ugly on TV! (I always loved that film so it couldn’t have been a better end to my day!)

ambition · challenge · mountain climbing · scafell pike · Uncategorized · walking holidays

So I’ve decided to climb a mountain! 

So recently I decided I wanted a new focus. Scott has joined a running club which meet twice a week and he is enjoying focusing on that which leaves me at home to get fit. I’ve been using my kettle bell to workout again while he’s out again am feeling better for it but I know in a few weeks it won’t be testing me anymore and will start to feel easy again.

So yesterday I joined a walking group. I looked it up online and went along to the meeting point where I was met with lots of friendly faces. I took Poppy, to break the ice if nothing else, and she certainly did that. We walked a route I had never been before then stopped for a drink halfway and walked a different route back again. There were all ages and abilities there, some had been going years and others only a few months. I spoke to most of the group as we walked and they really were all so nice and pleased I had joined them I felt so welcome.

So the aim of my walking is not just to improve my fitness, to meet new people  and give me something else to focus on when I don’t have overtime at work but to build myself up for the challenge I have set myself.

Next year I aim to climb Scafell Pike, the tallest mountain in England.
Scafell Pike is 978m tall and sits in the Lake District. The views from the top are stunning and there are several different routes you can take up and down ranging from 6 to 12 miles. It’s tricky terrain so I will need to prepare myself for this in a big way, walking 5 miles yesterday is a good start I think! Scott will be climbing it with me and we are both really excited to have such a challenge to focus on next year.
The reason we are doing it next year is a few things, firstly fitness; I’m sure i could do it now but I’m nowhere near as fit as I should be and would like to be, secondly cost; we already wanted to visit the Lake District so will be including this climb in a trip to stay on Lake Windermere for a few days and already have a holiday planned for this year and thirdly time; we have a lot planned for this year so just wouldn’t be able to fit it in.

I am so excited to get ready for this challenge with both with my fitness and actually planning for it I can’t wait to get myself a notebook and start planning! We already took a trip to Go Outdoors for something else and spent a few minutes looking at all the outdoor clothing, backpacks and supplies you can buy, we already have walking boots but the rest will be new to us and I think after all the work we are going to do to get fit for this it will be great to treat ourselves to some new clothes to go in!

I don’t think we will climb until about May time but I’m still looking into this, I’ve read some stories of people climbing just a couple of weeks ago and there being a few feet of snow at the top so ice picks and crampons being needed! I’m feeling adventurous but I think that is taking it a little too far! Also it doesn’t look like the right terrain for Poppy with her being so small and how rocky it can be so we will have to leave her behind for this one.

Here are some pictures of the mountain and scenery to give you an idea of why I’m so excited to do this. I plan to keep my blog updated with information about my trip as I go along so hopefully you guys will all get excited with me during the next year!

Cockapoo · dogs · Puppy · Uncategorized

Poppy at 9 months

So our puppy Poppy is approaching 9 months now and there are a few things that we have learnt about having a dog that I thought I would share.

Firstly you can only go so far in the rules with what you should be doing, and the rest of it has to come from what works for you. Poppy loves to be with us, she is  real family dog. So for the first few months we left her downstairs in the kitchen while we got ready in the mornings, she used to cry, bark, whine, do anything to get our attention but we hadnt got so far where we could trust her not to  have an accident if we let her upstairs so we had to manage it. After a while we got more confident with her toileting and so now she comes upstairs with us in the mornings. She loves nothing more than lying on our bed waiting for us to get ready. Or if its the weekend when she barks in the morning its not because she needs to go out, its because she wants to come up, this makes her the perfect Sunday morning chill dog and we love her for it!

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The next thing is dogs will only live up to their type so much, the rest is them and their own little personality. We have a small dog which are meant to be yappy in their bark and quite often get small dog syndrome when out on a lead. Poppy rarely barks and when she does its more of a half bark half gruff sound and as for other dogs when out on a lead she is usually scared of them and hides behind us at first. Sometimes it can be quite embarrassing when there is another dog hurtling towards your dog just wanting to play and your dog literally pulls your arm out of your socket to get away! We get away with us because of her size and age, “Sorry shes still a baby, shes scared of everything.” I’m not sure this excuse will work forever Poppy so can you please man up some time soon!

This leads me on to her size, when we looked for a cockapoo we thought they all looked like a medium sized dog with short curly hair. (See random pictures of cockapoos I obtained from google)

What we got was a small dog with long flowing wavy hair! Every other cockapoo we meet looks different to Poppy. I suppose this is what you get with a crossbread but she is honestly the smallest one we have ever come across with the longest fluffiest hair! Well she was until yesterday when we had her groomed for the first time! I was struggling to keep on top of the knots that kept appearing in her fur and she was always so dirty after a walk it took a lot of washing and drying to keep her clean. So here is Poppy’s new look for spring!

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Poppy really is our little companion, she is so easily adaptable and can walk for miles without a problem or is just as happy curled up on the sofa. She isnt a lap dog, which in a way i’m a little sad about as I love having a little cuddle with her but that’s just what it is with Poppy, a little cuddle. She will be on your lap being fussed for a few seconds and then off she goes to the other end of the sofa! Its like she likes her own space to sleep and rest as long as its not too far from her humans!

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The last thing I will mention is that sometimes you may very well get a dog that thinks its a cat, like we did. Yes it may sound strange but honestly Poppy loves nothing more than climbing onto the sofa arm for a nap, often taking a while to get comfy and sometimes falling off in the process but she manages! Oh and then there is her love of tuna! We cannot possibly open a can of tuna without giving some to Poppy. I’ve never seen her so excited when she hears me use the can opener, unfortunately plenty of other things come in cans so she is a lot of the time disappointed!

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All in all your first few months with a puppy will be a learning curve for everyone including the puppy. Its so hard to believe its been 7 months with her now and we are still finding our feet with some things, like grooming! But we love her all the same and wouldn’t be without her.

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independence · Money · Uncategorized

Independence 

So when I think back I am pretty sure I was forced into being independent in my early teens. I had a part time job at a family business a few Sundays a month for very little money but it was my money so off I would go to earn my few pounds and home I would come again. This carried on with me taking myself to look for another job at 16, finding a job and then walking through town and back twice a day on weekends and to work said job. I was a 16 year old girl walking home at 11pm at night past pubs full of people, but I didn’t care because I had my job which gave me my freedom. 

After moving out at a young age I was forced even more to become independent and again found myself a job simply by knocking on doors and asking. This meant I could always pay my way, I was never reliant on anyone to clear my debts, put a roof over my head or otherwise. 

Since that age I’ve only had 1 period of being out of work for 3 months, not counting maternity leave, and up until that point I knew I was going to leave my job so I saved and prepared for it as much as I could. 

When I was left a single Mum I had no choice but to be independent, I got help but I managed that money and we never went without anything. I could budget and plan and enjoy doing nice things I knew I could afford. Life was easy to manage. 

Now life is different, I’m no longer a single Mum and have a loving husband who provides for me and T more than we could have ever dreamed of. We still plan and budget and save for the things we want but due to me being part time and having set things I pay for each month a lot of the spare income is Scott’s. This is not an issue, if there is something I need or would like us to do as a family Scott will cover it. If there is overtime available at work I will always offer and use this money to be able to pay for events like birthdays and Christmas, but I always feel like there is something to pay for, this month my overtime went towards a dentist bill,  and one day it would just be nice to be able to treat Scott without it being like a special occasion. I feel like I’ve lost that independence I’ve always had with money because I’m now a part time working Mum whose minimal income gets swallowed up by all the boring things.

I feel like this is something that doesn’t have an end in sight either as right now I can’t commit to more hours at work permanently due to childcare costs so I don’t see how I will be able to earn any more money for the foreseeable future, I’m maxing my overtime at the moment as it is. I’m planning to do a boot sale when the weather warms up just to clear some old things and raise a bit of cash. The one we did last year made us over £100 so it was well worth the early start. 

Don’t get me wrong I still have my independent streak, this weekend I painted the whole dining room on my own over 2 days. I love the feeling being independent gives you when you feel you have achieved something completely on your own without any help from anyone, I just wish I could feel that way financially more often.

How do you manage money between couples with everyone feeling equal? Are you a part time working Mum or a SAHM and how do you do it?

Childhood · happy

Making the most of it

This weekend has been different because Scott and Tiana have both been here for a lot of it, so we decided to do something fun yesterday and make the most of our Saturday together. We went down to our local steam railway and got the train just a few stops up to Wansford. Once we arrived we spent our time looking round all the old steam trains that are on display, looking at the model railway, checking out the workshop from the viewing platform and treating ourselves to a hot sausage roll in the cafe. After a while there we caught the steam train back again. It may not seem like much but we had so much fun doing something we have never done together before. From the minute we arrived at the station to the minute we got off the train home we all just enjoyed doing something different with our day and T did not stop smiling the entire time. Happy days.

Adult braces · Blogger · Dentist · Orthodontist · Teeth · Uncategorized

Adult braces- the first tightening 

So today I wasn’t as nervous as I thought I would be until about an hour before the appointment, I guess I have being busy at work to thank for that. Sitting in the waiting room I saw the same nice dental nurse take a woman upstairs for her appointment that I had when I had my braces fitted. This calmed me slightly as she really couldn’t have been nicer at explaining the whole process to me when I was slightly emotional at my new look. 10 minutes later she came and collected me, Scott was with me today because he had a day off and plus he likes to see how it all works, I guess it’s interesting when it’s not happening to you 😉  After apologising for leaving in a bit of a state last time, which they were all so nice about, we got down to business. 

First some wires were cut off in little pieces and dropped on the tray and then the main wire came out on the top. As soon as she started attaching the new wire I could feel the tightening, I was immediately remembering the previous appointment and the pain that came after and just thought ‘oh god here we go again!” Each section was tightened and reattached to each individual bracket, cue repeating the process on the bottom teeth and we were done! 

Well I say done, as I sat up I asked if my lower front tooth was included in the braces wire this time as this is where I have to place wax every night to stop it cutting my mouth to pieces. (I’m not just talking a tiny cute little ball of wax either, no I look more like a rugby player with a gum shield on! Good job I’m already married because this process is not attractive at the best of times!) So my orthodontist stops the chair from moving up and tells me there is a rubber coating you can have fitted to the wire to stop it cutting your cheeks so much and that shouldn’t be happening so before I know it back down I go and on it pops! It really doesn’t look great but it’s only on a very small section at the bottom and I’m hoping next time I will be able to have it off.  That particular tooth can’t be included in the wires just yet as there isn’t a big enough space for it apparently. 

So now I’m home and I attempted some soft food, ran my tongue round the edge of my mouth and oww there is a sharp piece of wire right at the back of my mouth which cut my tongue! Out come the nail clippers and I try to cut it off but it’s not budging so I will just have to try and avoid it from now on! 

One thing I am pleased about is my white wire is back along the top ☺ with all the brushing the coating had come off to leave it silver but it looks so much nicer white so that makes me happy. Now I’m just waiting to see when this tender feeling will wear off whenever I bite down again. I’m currently cooking the most delicious looking chicken dinner so fingers crossed I can eat it ok!

Here is a progress picture from day 1 until today with my first tightening at almost 3 months in.

Thanks for reading I will keep you updated! 
Lou xx

cockerpoo · Devon · UK breaks · Uncategorized · walking holidays · weekend breaks

Time Out in Devon

So last weekend we took a trip to Devon for the first time in 2 years. We stayed in a lodge we have stayed in twice previously and it didn’t fail to disappoint. It was just as magical as we remembered and we loved how almost everything was still exactly the same! We were so lucky with the weather and although we had to dodge some showers and some of our time was spent watching a film inside away from the rain we still managed lots of chill time in the tub! Being in a cosy lodge isn’t all bad when it rains anyway, we just lit up the log burner and snuggled down! ☺

Poppy certainly liked the heat too!

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On Saturday we started off with breakfast at The Bakehouse in Cullompton. We had booked a table as for a quirky little cafe it gets very busy. The breakfast was hearty! Just what we needed for our day ahead.

We then took a trip into Dartmoor National Park and visited Haytor Rocks. We were surprised how many people were there climbing the rocks but it was a beautiful day and although the wind was howling and it was quite a trek up the views and beautiful rainbow made it 100% worth it.

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If it wasn’t for the howling wind I and light showers at the top I would have attempted to climb the rocks to the top too but instead I wimped out and took pictures of Scott while holding onto Poppy!

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As we were exploring the rocks we came across some Dartmoor ponies just grazing, as they are free roaming I always love it when we see some as there is never a guarantee where they will be or if we will even see any.

On the way back we stopped in a little town called Bovey Tracey and had a cream tea at Home Farm cafe. We have visited this twice previously and once again the cream tea did not disappoint either! The cafe has a dog friendly room but as the sun was shining we chose to sit outside and have a cream tea each! The portions really are huge and we ended up taking a scone home each but it really was delicious!

After this we took a drive into Dartmoor and spotted a lone pony so stopped to take some pictures of the scenery and yet another rainbow. Although you could say the roads are a little hairy at times when you are driving up on cliffs it really is just a stunning view and every single time I go there I just wish I could up and move there!  We pulled in at a little stream and stone bridge to take some photos, by this time Poppy was fast asleep in the back so we didn’t stay long before heading back to rest our aching legs!

On Sunday we headed into Exeter for some shopping and found a great place to eat that does Cider and Pies! Not that we are great cider lovers but they had so many varieties it was hard not to find one you didn’t like! The food was again amazing and the service great and I’m definitely pleased we spent a little extra time looking for somewhere different to eat, even if it did mean I got a little grumpy hungry!

When it came to Monday we were sad to be leaving our romantic nights under the stars at our peaceful, beautiful little lodge and have no doubt that one day we will be back but just maybe in a few years. Now I think we are ready to explore somewhere new and find somewhere else to make happy memories like we have in Devon.

Devon · happy · romantic weekends · Thankful

Feeling greatful 

So I’m back after probably the longest break since I started this blog. It’s been a busy couple of weeks and the one word that springs to mind is greatful. 

I’m feeling greatful for the time T had off from school so we could use it to play, make hama beads, watch films and spend time walking Poppy together. 

For the high winds we had Sunday following on from the storm on Thursday so we could go and watch Scott fly the kite and laugh our loudest laughs at him being pulled along and then eventually right over with the wind! 

For time with my best friend, catching up over a few glasses of wine, watching strange but funny films and just enjoying girly time hanging out together. 
For Sunday evening meals at home in the warm with the heating on snuggling on the sofa all 3 of us together. 

For friends who can make time to spend with us, whether it’s to go for coffee or come over lunch I’m forever greatful to have a good base of people around me I can sound off to about anything on my mind and get honest advice.

For T to have such sweet little friends, I love to see her happy playing with her toys with friends, racing scooters or creating art for a friend and just seeing her pick them up and squeeze them to say bye makes me smile.

For my hard working husband, for who the hard work is finally starting pay off and is at last getting the recognition he deserves. Whether that means some tough choices to be made in the future we will see but whatever the decisions I know we will make them together.
Finally for this weekend, tomorrow we head back to Devon to the lodge we call our happy place. We are staying there for 4 days and plan to get to a few places in and around Dartmoor we haven’t seen before as well as stop off in Exeter for some shopping. This is our first time taking Poppy so it will be slightly different but I’m looking forward to showing her hills and scenery! (Where we live is completely flat and there and are certainly no wild ponies!) We are so ready for this busy weekend along with getting time to relax and enjoy just being together as as a couple, not parents or employees, just us and the puppy, should be bliss! 
Have a great weekend everyone 

Lou x