Sunday, 28 July 2013

Unbroken Bonds

Looking at these two beautiful smiling faces you would be forgiving for thinking they were nothing short of angelic, and for approximately 10 minutes of the day split up into 5 second periods, they are!  This even more so when they get together.  These cousins born only one week apart are as close as brothers and as such they play like brothers, love like brothers and FIGHT like brothers.

When they are playing nicely they swap toys, they 'read' books and they sit in bed with their feet tucked under the covers talking and laughing like a pair of old women.  

As with all toddlers the moment they go silent we know they are up to something.  The usual list of silent mischief is climbing on cupboards, opening nail varnish bottles and emptying the content on the floor, plastering themselves in 'daddies' hair products, putting things down the toilet or throwing the newly laundered clothing all over the floor.

And when there isn't silence or laughter, there are tears hitting, pushing, taking away toys, throwing things at each other or not sharing a book.  Thankfully as they are getting older these moments are less frequent and usually happen when one or both are tired.  I love watching them learn and grow together, their loving relationship reminds me of some children I know...

My sister Kim & I at the front, 2 of our brothers at the back

Things aren't the same as how they used to be for us back then of course our lives now are very different, we are adults with families of our own, but the one thing that remains is the bond of love.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

I Made This!

I had planned to make something new to join in with 'The Gallery' today but I've had so many other things to do and think about I didn't get around to it.  It has been ages since I made anything worth taking a picture of so on flicking through old photos nothing really appealed, that was until I came across this shadow picture taken by the teen princess.  

This counts right?

The Teen Princess and I in the foreground, little man and our neighbour in the background
I made the children!

I'm pretty sure you'll find much more creative people than me over at 'The Gallery' today so be sure to pop over and have a look.

Sticky Fingers Photo Gallery

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Bundle of Joy, Kate & William's baby boy!

Until today the royal baby has been last on my list of news to keep up with.  I like many of the nation heard through the grapevine that Kate was in labour yesterday and as I walked through green park on a pre-planned visit to Trafalgar Square and Oxford street, I paid no real attention to the gathering crowd. I did not for one second think about waiting around for the birth announcement to arrive nor did I choose to rush home to watch the story unfold on television. 

I felt rather sorry for him clad in his formal wear in the hottest day of the year so far!

I continued my trip as planned dipping my feet in the water at Trafalgar Square and climbing up to get a picture with the famous lions before heading down to oxford street to watch the teen spend her pocket money on countless pieces of tat. (Pictures to follow when I find my camera!)

What made me want to watch today was catching that first glimpse, not the first glimpse of the baby, though of course a new baby is always lovely to see, but the first glimpse of Kate.  It's hard enough being a new mum without having to step outside the hospital to hundreds of cameras clicking away at you.  Kate, as usual, carried herself with class and despite the after baby bump (which was refreshing to see, I'm sure some had imagined that she would come out of the hospital looking 'back to normal,') she looked radiant.  

What I loved most was seeing William, after having lead their conversation with the press, acting in his rightful role as his wife's protector, swiftly come back out, click in the car seat like a pro, and drive his family home.  By the looks of it baby Cambridge has the beginnings of an awesome father and Wills has the profess, provide and protect role of a man down to a tee. Congratulations to these new parents because as the world watches on they will have to face the challenges that all parents face and I wish them well.

In other news I got dumped by a 'girl friend' via whats app message, but I won't dwell too long on that, it's not the first time!

Thursday, 18 July 2013

The Terrible Twos is a Myth Right?

I really believed the terrible twos to be a myth or at least not as bad as some made it out to be,  that was until this week.  The teen princess never really gave me much trouble, as a toddler she was polite, calm and loved playing on her own or with her friends at nursery.  I never really had to entertain her much, in fact I often had to fight to get her attention from her books.

This week my opinion on the terrible twos has been completely reversed.  Little man has turned into a beautiful monster!

The list of not so nice behaviours so far goes as follows:

  • Taking off his shoes and throwing them in the shop and repeatedly doing so even after having them put back on.  He was insistent that he was buying a new pair. 
  • Pulling all his books off the shelf with no intention of reading any then saying,  "Look mummy, made a mess."
  • Throwing my mobile phone at the teen princess, just because she looked like an interesting target sat quietly watching cake boss on her ipad,
  • Throwing said ipad on the kitchen floor because it needed charging and he wanted to use it.
The evidence
  • Throwing his cup out into the garden and when asked to collect it and bring it back, proceeding to collect it then throw it further into the garden in protest of me asking him to get it in the first place.
  • Screaming at the top of his lungs during public events because he wants to sit in his pushchair.  Anyone who knows him knows he NEVER wants to sit in his pushchair.
  • Taking things belonging to his sisters or I and singing "ner ner, na, ner ner."  Where he got that from I have no idea!
  • Ripping up books, just for the fun of it and staring you in the face just to make sure you are watching.
  • I've mentioned throwing four times so far and that's because he throws absolutely anything and everything and not in the sort of innocent throwing but not really knowing what your doing kind of way.  Little man throws with purpose, his main purpose being to frustrate or annoy all the over 12s in the house!

One thing I love however is that despite this phase of undesirable behaviour he still manages to listen when it's really important.  He stays clear of the oven when I'm cooking, will hold my hand when crossing a road or in a car park and the word dangerous really has meaning to him.

I'm pretty sure this phase will soon pass but boys will be boys!

His most recent attack on the living room.

My strategies so far are letting him know that I don't like the behaviour and then trying not to give it too much attention, (very difficult when I'm staring at a giant mess.)

What strategies have you used to 'tame' the terrible twos?

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Into the Archives - The Gallery

This weeks theme at The Gallery is 'Into the Archives'.  We have been challenged by Tara to dust off our old albums and look for a photo.  I'm a pretty sentimental person when it comes to photo memories, so far from my albums being dusty (they are a little dusty) they are well used, so well used that they are falling apart!

The two pictures I have chosen are special to me for very different reasons.  The first is a picture of myself.

This is the youngest picture I have of myself, unlike my children, who will have more than enough evidence that their heads were either cone shaped (the teen princess born by natural delivery)  or to big to fit through my pelvis (little man born by c-section).  They will be able to see what they looked like throughout the years, and will have plenty of mementos of those special childhood moments like graduating nursery, sports day and prom.  

My childhood photos create a scattered image of my childhood, much like my memories.  I wish I had more of them but I cherish the ones I do have.

The second picture I chose was this...

That's me at the front in the blue dress matching the blue of my grandmothers dress

This photo was taken in 1980's Barbados at the wedding of my aunt, it was after my mum had left to join my father here and I was still back home with my grand parents and brother.  I love this picture because although it doesn't contain my parents, all of my siblings or my children it does still contain a lot of the people I care most about in the world.  I love looking at the smiling faces of my grandparents, my grandfather (may he rest in perfect peace) with his grey dickie-bow and glamorous wife right by his side her arm lovingly placed on his shoulder, having been together since the tender age of 15.  

That's the kind of love I cherish, the love of a supportive family.

For more into the archives head over to The Gallery.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Cheering, French and Give Me Strength!

This week was a busy one I won't bore you with all the details (mainly because I can't remember them as I have a sieve like memory).  I do however remember collecting my Godson from school as his mum had an appointment.  The process was pretty smooth until his younger brother decided to scare the life out of me and run out of sight, luckily he only ran to his Nan's house (which is where we were heading anyway) two doors away from the school gate.  

Daniel really loves playing them especially the younger one, or rather he enjoys following him around and copying what he says much to the annoyance of my Godson.

The teen princess had a friend over on Friday night.  You know when they get to the teen stage it's not all of their friends that you want around, much like adults some of them have personalities you just don't take to.  However this particular friend is a joy to have around, one of those teens that is well behaved, enjoys a laugh and complements my horrid old school photos (they do exist!)  I do hope, like my best friend and I, they remain friends long after they have left school.

I then had to take them to their cheer comp on Saturday.  I'm always proud watching my baby girl do her 'cheer thang' as I call it (trying to be cool but totally missing the cool ship and being left behind on the island of outdated mothers!)  They didn't do as well as they would have liked (the girls are very hard on themselves) but I still thought they were fantastic especially considering the heat in the sports stadium.

Sunday came so fast and though it's usually the day we put our feet up and relax (after getting uniform and dinner ready.) This Sunday stopped to watch my friend kick a ball whilst on the way to another friends house.  It was just the teen and I because little man was home with mum, it's great having her around and little man now doesn't mind when I pop out without him for a few hours, which is great!  We went to visit our tree and took a few snaps.

The teen and I had carved our name in the tree before little man was born,
we went back with him and added the D after his birth

Forever the Model

The teen and I had been given the task of collecting a French student who is staying with my friend and is the same age as the teen.  We collected her promptly then spent all day driving around half of London looking for a mattress.  We entertained her until my friend came home that evening and It was very interesting trying to have a conversation with someone who speaks very little English, though with my limited French we manage to find out lots about her and her family, as well as what she likes doing.  I look forward to seeing her again soon after my friend has taught her some English and seeing her progress!

After such a busy couple of days I am super thankful for the rest today and will be doing absolutely nothing... apart from all the things I have to do for the children.  Give me strength!

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

364 days of sunshine - The Gallery

The theme this week over at the gallery is 'Sun'.

Thank goodness we are finally seeing some here in London this week.  With the ever so cold and long lasting winter out of the way it's now that time where we can shed the wooly jumpers and put on our shortest shorts (or is that just me?)

My offering for this week is a medley of pictures taken over the weekend that I shared on Instagram.

That's the thing about Sun it get's people out and about in the community and enjoying time with friends and family.  If only it were sunny 364 days of the year (we have to leave 1 day for snow at christmas!)  I would be a very happy mummy indeed!

Don't forget to hop over to the gallery for more sunny offerings x

Saturday, 6 July 2013

I'm a big boy now!

In just one more month my babe in arms who was unable to walk, talk, or even smile.  

My innocent little treasure that relied on me for everything and wouldn't leave my side, will be a fully fledged toddler. 

My baby is turning two.   

He can now run, sing songs and have a short conversation.  He tells me what he likes or doesn't like and though he still relies on me for a lot he is now so much more independent.   He feeds himself, likes to bathe himself and brush his own teeth, he makes jokes and laughs with us.  He is mummies big boy.  

Each new stage of his development brings with it both joys and challenges.  I know how quickly the time passes they soon turn from toddlers to pre-schoolers, pre-schoolers to school children, school children to teens and finally, before you know it, they are adults with their own families.  The will take their turn at making mental notes of each new thing their child/ren learns and will cherish every moment they can share with them before the cycle begins again.  

I now have a glimpse of how my mother felt watching my siblings and I grow and change into the people we are today.  Proud of every rise and ready to be there to help through every fall.  

I hope my children know that as long as I live I will hold their hand both physically and metaphorically.

Monday, 1 July 2013

That Waiting to Exhale Moment

Whilst talking to my friend about how important good friendships are she said, "That's the thing about you Gail, you never hold grudges."  

I don't know, why but ever since she said it those words have been running through my mind.  Does everybody know this about me?  Is this a good or a bad thing?  I happen to think it's one of those two edged sword type of things.  On the one hand the people I care about are never afraid to come back and talk to me after an argument or disagreement because I'm quick to forgive, but on the other hand, I could be considered soft, or a pushover.  I want to change that about me without being unkind or heartless.  I want people to know that sometimes sorry isn't enough.   

A couple of years after my 7 year relationship ended my friend and I were flicking through my facebook photos when she came across a couple of my ex.  She asked me why I still had them and I told her that he was a part of my past, someone I cared deeply about and although I'm over him, that doesn't mean I want to erase all memory of him because we had some good times.  I've never been the type to throw away love letters, gifts or even special text messages and I'm beginning to think that's a problem.  

Little man's dad thought it was ok after not having seen me throughout the whole of my pregnancy to stroll up and knock my door when little man was 10 months old.  He came with a whole load of apologies, hugs, kisses (for me not our son,)  then had the audacity to ask if I would get the CSA not to take payments (I of course didn't do this).  I have to laugh about it now because that was very brave considering what an ass he'd been.  The thing is all those apologies meant nothing as I've not heard a word from him since, and our son is almost 2.  It goes to show that that flaw in my character, that good-natured, kind and forgiving part of who I am, is most certainly not always a good thing.

Does my pout look good in this?

Perhaps I should have one of those 'waiting to exhale' type of moments: smash some shit, put all the memories in a bin and burn them.