We all live in a #yellow... pop up tent! A yellow... pop up tent. A yellow... pop up tent. 🎵 Not a submarine in our back garden today.

Daddy pitched this yellow pop up tent in the garden and the kiddies sat in it for ages. It was moved to various shady areas throughout the afternoon, but served its purpose of entertaining the kids for a while.

Now, what you may not be able to tell from this photo is that this tent is not very wide. They had to lay in a foetal position and couldn’t stretch their legs out. For some reason this tickled me. Seeing their feet poking through the sides every now and again!

It’s the small things that make me smile. The @myhousethismonth challenge today is 5 things about me, so here’s 5 things that made me smile today:

1 ~ the yellow pop up tent
2 ~ watching Gary Barlow and his Croony collabs
3 ~ Isla and Daddy’s delicious homemade brownie
4 ~ Noah & Isla watching #GBBO & their comments about the celebrity bakes
5 ~ I got something finished for work this afternoon (made me feel productive)

What about you? What’s your 5 things that made you smile today... #mummyphotoaday #mygardenthismonth #myhousethismonth

We all live in a...

I usually get a lot of feedback about our front garden, but as no one is going to see it in all it’s glory: I’ll post a photo or two! It’s full of life and colour.

In the last few days everything has decided to #flower, the tulips have come out in yellow and red, the hyacinth is popping up in purple and white... and so many other pretty flowers and plants, that I don’t know!

I’ve set myself a task to find out what the other plants and flowers are. Without asking my family. I will just double check with them once I’ve guessed. I’m sure I annoy them constantly with my “what’s this?” what’s app messages.

I inherited this garden from the previous owners. The late husband was a professional gardener/landscaper and you can tell. I have things in the garden that are not popular and the established borders are set out perfectly. They loved in it from brand new. So, this is a definite “grow your own“, I just need to master the upkeep now!

I’ve got a lot of learning to do and I’m determined to understand these gardens by the end of the Spring.

You can just make out the camellia in the last photo. I can’t wait for that to bloom fully, it’s a stunning flower and brightens up the view from our living room.


I usually get a lot...

Today, we had another day in the garden. Some chill time and lots of fun with an #activity or two! Happy Sunday.

Daddy and I moved the old patio and rubble (which will have to live in our garden until the recycling centres open back up) and I think we’ve hidden it rather well. If you spot it I’ll be most impressed.

Where the rubble had been is now where you can see the outdoor dining area. It’s been out of action all winter, which we wouldn’t have used in any case. It’s opened the garden up even more now we’ve cleaned it all! It’s amazing how much space this garden has.

When we bought the house, the garden was full of stuff: rockery, pond, vege patch, pagoda and a 10ft greenhouse. It made the garden feel quite small, it’s amazing what a bit of hard work and a little vision can achieve. I knew this garden had the potential to be a perfect family space.

I cut the grass, tidied up some more of the bushes and watered everything. Whilst the kiddies played this game... they love it. But they do get rather competitive!

What activities have you been up to today?


Today, we had another day...

We made the most of the day today and it feels good! Whilst Daddy finished off the final 13 patio slabs (which look incredible), I sorted the garden.

I pruned all the bushes, weeded the flower beds, got rid of a lot of thorny weedyness, painted the potting shed door and filled an entire green bin. 😂 I even trimmed the grass edge with grass scissors.

I am loving the garden more and more. I hope that the sun keeps on shining so that we can get it looking how we want before Summer. Making the most of #lockdown. It was lovely as our neighbours on either side, both over 60, offered advice and help today. Deano nearly ran out of sand and one neighbour dropped some over the fence. It’s nice to have a sense of community even though we are all in our homes.

We’re looking forward to playing in the garden tomorrow and making the most of this space.

#myhousethismonth #mygardenthismonth

We made the most of...

We have joined the rest of the country and made a #rainbow design in our living room window. The kids have drawn one on a piece of paper and also used window felt pens to design a 🌈 on the pane itself. It looks pretty. The kiddies are very happy with them. They lit up when the neighbours asked for them to make them rainbows for the window.

I love this part of the front garden, you can just see the flowers are about to bloom any day now. Daffodils are hiding in amongst the tulips, hyacinths full of a deep purple, the Heather has come up a nice reddy purple too. By the front door there is a sea of purple from the aster (I think that’s what they are). Can you see the beautiful Camellia to the left of the kiddies too? It’s about to bloom with its bright pink flowers. The yellow Jasmine is just starting to grow on the right side of the kiddies, can you see it climbing up the wall?

There’s so much going on. It looks beautiful. I don’t remember it looking this pretty last Spring. Maybe I didn’t pay much attention. Or maybe these things have grown from random seeds I planted last year and forgot about. I can’t remember what I planted though 🤦🏼‍♀️ Does anyone else do that?

Have you seen many rainbows in the window of people’s homes?


We have joined the rest...

A very happy birthday to my first furbaby, Rambo. He is 13 today. I can’t believe he’s been in my life for 13 years, we’ve done so much and seen so many places. It’s gone so quickly.

He is so good, his temperament is just perfect. He’s not a yappy dog. He barks to mark his territory but that’s it. When the kids were toddlers, they would pull his fur out in clumps and he would just lay there. He cleans the other pets in the house and always makes sure the kids are safe at night time. It’s so cute. He’s such a loving, fatherly dog.

This little man is my follower at the moment; more so than normal. He follows me everywhere. If I’m on the loo, he will sit at the bathroom door staring at me. When I’m in the bath, he pushes the door open and sits next to me and stares. Right now, he’s currently snuggling under the duvet.

Let’s hope we can go and explore somewhere new in the summer, with amazing views and miles of countryside. Our favourite.

Thanks for all the adventures Rambo 🐾 and the snuggles! We love you lots.

A very happy birthday to...

I wonder what is going through their tiny minds right now? Do you think they consider things like we do? Do you think they #dream of what’s going on? The kids seem to be taking it all in their stride and albeit they are sad they can’t see their friends, they seem to be just getting on with it.

Whereas, I go through waves of different feelings. I’ve discovered I’m at my best when I just take each day as it comes. When I start to think about things globally, or the time period of lockdowns and when the kids are going back to school... that’s when I start to feel worried and glum.

I worry that my employer will soon say “sorry Sonia we’re not paying you anymore as you’re homeschooling”, or the worry that I’m not teaching my kids correctly and they’re missing too much of their education. Or the impact of isolation on the kiddies at this age, making friendships and building rapport with people.

I hope these are worries over nothing. And I know all of the kiddies in the world are in the same boat. But, as a parent you can’t help but worry.

So for now I’m trying not to think negatively. Trying not to think more than 1 day ahead (except maybe planning Easter Sunday dinner) and I’m trying to keep smiling. So my babies keep smiling.

Keep calm and carry on. Isn’t that the saying!


I wonder what is going...

This afternoons activity with Daddy looked like lots of fun: they gathered sticks and the kiddies built their own pile of firewood for a camp fire. They then sat around the fire pit to test whose camp fire would flame up the best!

Isla created a very structured camp fire, logical and a pattern to where she placed her sticks. Noahs looked more sporadic but covered a wider area.

Neither camp fires took fire, it was quite windy. So the kiddies enjoyed a hot chocolate and marshmallow around their piles of sticks.

They had fun though and that’s the main thing. I’m loving all of these practical tasks they’re doing with Daddy.

I’ve been waiting, all day, for someone to tell me it’s all a dream and we are still going to Dubai. But, unfortunately, no one jumped out screaming April #fool and alas, we are still at home. I’m gutted.

Lots to look forward to though and right now it’s about focussing on our main objective: stay at home at all times, unless to buy essential food & walk the dogs! I have actually loved being at home everyday. It’s my favourite place.


This afternoons activity with Daddy...

Five ways for Mums to get a better night’s sleep

Whether you’re a new mum or your kids are growing up, you’re probably all too familiar with that well-known feeling of sleep deprivation. Mums everywhere are not getting enough sleep, whether it’s from being kept up all night with a crying baby or toddler, having to stay up late getting through a ton of housework, or simply not being able to settle with a racing mind after everything you’ve had to get through over the course of the day. As a mum it’s important that you get enough sleep, especially sleep of the deep, refreshing kind so you are able to wake up in the morning and take on all the tasks that raising a young family brings. We’ve put together a list of top tips to help mums everywhere get the best out of their night’s sleep.

Avoid Distractions

Although some distractions – i.e. a crying newborn baby – can’t be avoided when you’re a mum, there are plenty of distractions that you can avoid. For example, using technology such as smartphones, tablets, a laptop or even watching the television straight before you go to bed can cause your brain to start working overtime, making it even harder to get into a state of relaxation in order to be able to sleep. Whenever possible, avoid using any technology or doing anything too mentally stressful just before you go to bed, and take the time in between putting the kids to bed and going to bed yourself to do something calming and relaxing, such as taking a bubble bath to help you wind down.


Get Into a Routine

Those with a regular sleep routine do tend to sleep better, and if you’re finding yourself going to bed at varying different times each night, this could be why you’re feeling like you’re not getting enough sleep. Set a bedtime for yourself just as you would for your children, and make sure that you stick to it whenever possible, even over the weekend to ensure that your body is getting the amount of sleep that it needs each night. Ideally you should be looking to get around six to eight hours of sleep per night, so set your bedtime accordingly with the time that you’ll need to wake up.

Buy a New Bed

Sometimes, sleep is disrupted due to a bed that’s just not as comfortable as it used to be anymore. Beds come with all different levels of support and comfort, and if your bed just doesn’t seem to be doing the trick, it may be time to invest in an upgrade in order to help you sleep better at night. Personal comfort beds are an excellent choice to make as you can tailor them to a level of comfort that suits you personally, whilst memory foam mattresses will mold to your body and provide you with a blissfully comforting sleep experience.

Take Naps

If you’re a stay-at-home mum, you might be tempted to get housework done or other tasks when it comes to that time of day when your children take a nap. However, if you’re not getting a good enough sleep at night, you might find that this is also an ideal time to catch up on some much-needed sleep and take a nap at the same time that your kids do in order to help you recharge your batteries and feel more refreshed. You don’t have to sleep for as long as they do, so you can split the napping time between having a power nap yourself and getting some housework or other jobs out of the way.

Create a Sleep Friendly Bedroom

Bedrooms are meant to be calming and serene sanctuaries where we can get a good night’s sleep, however more often than not if you’re a mum you’ll know all too well that your bedroom is more likely to be a cluttered storage space for toys and more and more of your children’s things. The bad thing about this is that clutter and mess in your bedroom can have an effect on your sleeping, so have a clear out of the bedroom and move the clutter into alternative storage spaces. Keep the noise down in your bedroom or use recordings of soothing sounds to mask unavoidable noises from outside. Essential oils can also help – try a drop of lavender oil on your pillows or a lavender reed diffuser to help you sleep better at night.

If you have any more top tips for other mums, we’d love to hear from you!


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1 Comment
  • Pat Jones
    November 3, 2015

    So, you’re saying I shouldn’t be reading blogs at this hour? 🙂

    Great tips. I miss the naps I used to have next to the cot. But we’ve another one on the way, and will probably have a side cot this time, so it won’t be long before I’m making the same mistakes as last time.

Make your garden an all weather hang out for your kids with an outdoor room!
Five ways for Mums to get a better night’s sleep

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