Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas Mischief....

This December we have been looking after a mischievous little Elf, Missy Snowflake.

I've only just realised it is the 16th (how???), and I haven't shared any of her misbehaving yet... and believe me there has been plenty of it! So here is a little update on our time with Missy.

 Things Started off so well when she made the kids a Rudolph breakfast... 

...but went downhill a bit after that.

There were a few nights of fun and games....

Until it all went horribly wrong and Missy hurt her leg trying to navigate the kids messy bedrooms.

She get her own back and toilet papered our tree..

Feeling bad for the tree incident, Missy brought a Santa  key for us, which was great because Neil had been worrying about how Santa would get through our stove.

We've certainly had our work cut out for us over the last 16 days! As our time with us nears an end, I wonder if she will up her game with her next set of surprises?

Do you have an elf staying with you this Christmas? Has she been naughty or nice?

The Reading Residence #ElfTakeover

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Crisis of Confidence

I'm having a bit of a crisis of confidence this week, and nothing can shake it.

I don't know where it came from & I don't know how to get rid of it.

Some nights I sit at my laptop writing posts. After finishing a post it's only natural to read through it, to check it makes sense, to check spelling and grammar, but as I read through, little doubts start to creep in. I start second guessing everything I've written, feeling like it's not good enough. Then I pass the point of no return... I hit the delete button, and the post is gone forever.

I've started to second guess myself so much that it's stopping me actually writing anything. I have a page full of ideas in my blog notebook. The problem is, once it's left my head and made it on to the paper, I instantly feel stupid about it, and take it no further.

When I first started blogging, I used to look to other blogs for inspiration. The writing of others always inspired my own writing. Now, when I read blogs, I see people who are better writers than me, people who are more creative than me, with more ideas, and then I feel a bit rubbish about my own writing, my own ideas. It's hard not to look at those around you and compare your work, and a bit of that is ok, but it becomes a problem when you let it take over.

I haven't blogged for a week, and it's making me panic a bit.

There's an internal struggle going on. One half of me is struggling to publish anything due to fear of other people thinking it's not good enough. The other half of me is shouting 'Get a grip!!', this is my blog and I should just write whatever I feel like writing. If someone else thinks it's rubbish... so be it. It's very easy to say that, but I'm finding it a little more difficult to put that carefree thinking in to practice.

So, that's where I'm at right now. I think someone needs to give me a good shake to get me back on track!

Super Busy Mum

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Meet Missy Snowflake Elf

On Friday when the children came home from school they found a tiny mystery door in our hallway.
Baffled by the door, the kids spent the whole of Saturday speculating as to what lay behind the door, and why it was there.

There were lots of ideas thrown around. After much discussion, and lots of bickering, Neil decided it must be something to do with Alice and Wonderland, because the door was very small but Alice could make her self small to fit through such tiny doors.

On Sunday morning, they awoke to find a message on our chalkboard table.

The message told them that a special parcel had been delivered through the door and had been left for them under the table.

The kids couldn't wait to open the box and see what was inside. They carefully opened the lid, and peeled back the red paper to reveal.... 

An Elf!

Yes, inside the box was a cute little lady elf named Missy. 

Packaged up with Missy was a beautiful Christmas Journal, and Elf Report Card, some children's behavior charts, an elf passport and her own little sleepy suit.

Also in the box was a letter from Santa, asking the kids if it was OK if Missy stayed with us for a while. The letter said that she would be staying until Christmas eve, and would report back her findings to Santa. We were asked to also report on Missy's behavior with the Elf Report Card.

The kids were so excited to have an elf come to stay with them, and nicknamed her Missy 'Snowflake' Elf.

So Missy will be staying with us until Christmas eve, and hopefully will be having a lot of festive fun with us over the next 24 days! Hopefully she will behave herself and won't get up to too much mischief..... but you know what those elves are like!

Linking up with The Reading Residence & Life With Munchers for their Elf Takeover. Head over and have a look!

Monday, December 01, 2014

Baby Oleg Christmas Jumper Review

It's December, which can only mean one thing...... Christmas Jumper time! I love a good novelty jumper, and I've been dying to get mine out since mid November. I may have already worn my Rudolph jumper around the house last week because I just couldn't wait, but we'll keep that one a secret!

Whether out shopping, visiting Santa, strolling around a Christmas market, doing crafts at home or watching Muppets Christmas Carol by the fire, a good novelty jumper is essential!

So when the kids were given the opportunity to try a Baby Oleg Christmas jumper each, I couldn't say no! This has to be the cutest design I have seen yet. I'm a bit of a sucker for the meerkat adverts anyway, but even non-meerkat fans would struggle to resist Oleg's cute little face!

When the jumpers arrived the kids couldn't wait to try them on, so we headed outside for a mini photo shoot (along with our special guest, Missy).

It's important for a Christmas jumper to be cosy. Their jumpers were very light weight, and I was worried they were thin but they were surprisingly warm. The kids spent a good hour playing in the cold December sun and weren't cold at all.

The jumpers start at a size 3-4 and go up to a size 13. I ordered a size 5-6 for Caitlin (who is 4), so she could get some wear out of it next year too. It is quite big on her, but I was expecting that, and it's actually great because I can add a few warm layers underneath.  For Neil, I ordered the 7-8, which is around the size he usually takes. I didn't want to order the size up for Neil for fear it would drown him, and I think that was the right decision. The jumper is a good fit, with room to grow, and the sleeves are nice and long which is fab as we sometimes struggle with sleeves on his tops.

 The kids both loved their jumpers, and I had a hard job of convincing them to take them off at the end of the night. They look really stylish, and a love the colour, it's almost like a biscuity colour! It's festive without being too over the top, and is set to become one of the kids staple pieces this December.

You can own one of these jumpers from BritFash for £14.99 with free postage in the UK. They have a range of kids festive jumpers, but Baby Oleg is definitely my favourite of the lot.

Do you enjoy a novelty Xmas jumper, or are they not your cup of tea? I'd love to know what you think!

We received two Baby Oleg jumpers free of charge for the purpose of this review. All views are our own.
Family Fever

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Pawfect Pets #2

Hello and welcome to my brand new linky, Pawfect Pets.

Last week I was thrilled to have my first two linkers. I wasn't really sure if anyone would get involved, so I couldn't be happier!

The lovely Jenna from Tiny Footsteps introduced us to the other baby of the family, her beautiful Minature Schnauzer, Heidi. Take a look here, and keep an eye out for an extra cute photo of lovely baby Jasmine snuggling with the puppy.

The fabulous Helen from From Mummy To Mum got a new addition to the family, the adorable Jack Russell pup Milo. Head on over to see Milo tackling some sausages, and be prepared to saw 'awwww' at some more snuggling pictures, here.

Thanks very much for linking ladies, can't wait to find out more about Heidi & Milo in the coming weeks.

If you would like to join in this week, here are the rules:

  • The linky will open every Tuesday at 7am and will remain open until the following Monday at midnight.
  • You are welcome to link up any posts, past or present, that feature your pets.
  • The post can be a story, a photo, a pet product review... basically anything pet related!
  • Try and comment on at least two of the other posts in the link up.
  • Tweet using the #PawfectPets and I will re-tweet.
  • Please add my badge to your post
Blogger Mummy Lauren

Monday, November 24, 2014

Anywhere but the cat bed...

Our family cats are pretty damn lazy. They spend most of their days (and nights, actually) chilling, lying around, sleeping, sprawled out and really just doing as little as possible.

Of course, cats being cats, the nice comfortable cat bed you spent a good chunk of money on... it's not good enough.

Here is a cats guide to the best places to chill in the house...

The office chair:

Spread out across the floor... preferably in the way of everyone:

On the hoover pipe:

On the dining chairs:

Anywhere that has even the smallest amount of sunlight:

In the human's bed:

On the laundry pile:

Squashed on to the tiny bannister:

Sprawled across the rug like a human:

On the stairs, chilling like a boss:

In the firewood basket:

Behind the 300 degree stove:

Ok, so basically anywhere except the cat bed!

Where is your pet's favourite place to sleep? Have you ever found your pet in a strange place?

Blogger Mummy Lauren

On the first day of Christmas...

Ok, I'm well aware that it is only November, but today marks the start of Christmas in our house. I've been trying to hold off for as long as possible (there was one year when the Halloween decorations came down and the Christmas ones went up in the same week!) but I couldn't fight it any more!

It's hard not to feel festive at this time of year, there are Christmas adverts on TV all of the time, Santa's Grotto's are appearing all over towns and cities, the music channels have the Christmas songs on, you can't escape it. And I don't want to escape it! I love, love, love Christmas time.

It's only four and a half weeks until the big day, so we are not that early!

Putting up the decorations is something we always do as a family. I can remember many happy Christmases as a child helping my mam decorate our tree, and it's a tradition I wanted to continue with my children.

 Neil was very keen to help daddy set up the tree. I'm crap at this part, the side of the tree I prepare always seems to look like it's dying... so I left this to the professionals.

Caitlin loved getting stuck in to the decorations.

Then it came to the most important part of the tree, the star. They spent the whole day bickering about 'whose turn it was', and so in the end their super strong daddy lifted them both up to put it on together.

They did a great job of decorating the tree, it looks fab.

Once the kids had done their bit, I set about adorning our regular living room decorations with something a little more festive.

We finished off the evening with a Christmas movie, cuddled up on the sofa with the stove lit. It couldn't get much better than that.

At this time of year it's so cold and grey outside but now the house feels warm and colourful and inviting, and I'm starting to feel that childlike excitement growing with every twinkle of the fairy lights.

I now just can't wait for next week to see if we get a visit from one of Santa's little helpers...

Are you getting in to the festive spirit yet, or will you be saying Bah Humbug for another couple of weeks? When will you be putting up your tree?

Me add three