Instagram Envy- it’s REAL

Okay, lets be honest for a second. EVERYONE has someone they look up too, wether in ‘real’ life or ‘online’. It could be a friend or a celebrity. It could even be your family. But there is ALWAYS going to be that one (or few) people you compare yourself too.

I do this a lot on instagram and a lot on my blog too.

I am constantly looking through peoples blogs and people instagram feed wondering why I am not as good as them. Why am I not as smart as them to come up with the ideas they are doing! Why does their picture get over 100 likes and I get 50?

But the most important question I ask myself is WHY DO I CARE SO MUCH??

Why am I looking for validation from strangers? Well because thats what Ive been told I need and guess what, its worked. I love having people tell me my make up went well that day or that Jaxons dinner looked yummy after I spent all afternoon trying to come up with a new meal idea. Its nice to see the small things that go into my day are appreciated, even if its by another mummy who knows the struggles of trying to get ready quickly every morning or one who knows how difficult it can be to find the time to batch cook new baby foods.

When I sit and look at these beautiful pictures people take of their toddlers and babies I am so envious (in a good way, not a bitter way) at how they manage to get their toddlers to stay still longer than a split second. I am even more jealous if they can get them to smile! I struggle to keep Jaxon still long enough to just get him dressed, I have zero chance of getting him to stand still for a picture when he could be off doing something he shouldn’t.

Since Jaxon has started moving be it rolling over or running around I am almost certain that every picture I have ever taken of him has motion blur because the little horror just won’t stay still. Even in his sleep this kid CRAWLS around his cot. Matthew and I have stood and watched in disbelief as he has crawled around the cot trying to get comfy. Honestly like a dog would spin in circles before plopping down in its bed. Its utter madness.

So there I said it. I follow so many wonderful people on instagram and I just want you all to know if you can get your child(ren) to stay still or pose for a picture I am extremely jealous. If you come up with amazing new play activities for your babies/toddlers/children then again I am extremely jealous and also left feeling a little guilty for not doing them myself.

But please oh please if you have any tips or tricks to get beautiful pictures of a toddler who spins around the house like a tazmanian devil please help a mumma out and let me know.

Here is a picture of my little devil. Doing what he does best, being a weirdo. Jaxxx

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The Book I Return Too

I am a very avid reader. I used to read 3-4 books a week before I had Jaxon and was actually able to read a book without a toddler screaming for my attention.

I used to buy both paperback and kindle books. If I finished my paperback while I was out and I didn’t have a back up I would pull out my kindle and download a new book on there.

Matthew used to surprise me every few weeks with an Amazon voucher ‘just because’ so I could buy myself some new books. I literally asked for books for christmas, birthdays, valentines days and anniversaries. I can’t help it. They are like my drug of choice. I can’t think of anything better after a long day than escaping into a different world for a few hours.

But there has always been a book that I go back too, even when my TBR (to be read) pile is huge and growing by the week. Sometimes whenever I am feeling a bit down or in a rut I just go and dig out this one particular book. It ALWAYS reignites my love for reading.

You may have read it or you may have never heard of it before. I don’t know how I came across it but originally I bought it on my kindle as it was relatively cheap but I fell in love with it instantly and HAD to buy the paperback copy too. I do that. If I buy a book on my kindle and it has an impact on me I HAVE to have it in paperback to display proudly on my bookcase.

The book is called Beautiful Disaster. Its written by Jamie McGuire and it is honestly my favourite fiction world to disappear too.

I am not going to write too much about it here because I want everyone to form their own opinions on it if you want to read it. All I will say is that after reading it for the TENTH time I still fall in love with the characters. WDOh and if this isn’t enough there is also a second book too. I couldn’t contain my excitement when I found the second book. WD@

Honest motherhood (Explicit Edition)

Lets just dive straight in.

Some days parenting isn’t just hard, sometimes it downright fucking sucks. Sometimes that tiny human you made is literally pulling your hair out, punching you in the face and screaming nonstop for what seems like hours. Their temper tantrums are so often that it just blurs into one long one that lasts from the moment they wake up until the moment they finally give in and go to fucking sleep.

The house is a mess, the laundry pile you finally thought you were going to tackle has tripled in size and its now dinner time only for you to realise that you haven’t even brushed your teeth today let alone made it to the shop to buy the much need groceries. So you improvise with what all us mums know as the ‘picnic’ style dinner; Which loosely translates to what ever the fuck is left in the kitchen that you can throw on a plate and be done with it. Knowing full well you’ll be ordering a much needed and well deserved take out for yourself once the little terrorist is asleep.

They end up wearing their entire dinner so you throw them in the bath only to have them SHIT IN THE BATH so you have to start the whole process again after cleaning the bath out. You wash them from head to toe, tackle them into a clean nappy and Pjs for them to run away, strip down and piss all over the lounge carpet all in under the 30 seconds it took you to pull the plug in the bath.

I have recently found out that I am not the only mum who has so much dry shampoo in her hair that it could probably stand up on end without any help. Im not the only mum who can’t remember the last time she was able to wash her hair AND shave her legs in the same shower. Im not the only mum who has taken a baby wipe to her jeans because she hasn’t had time to put the washing machine on and these are the least dirty pair she has to hand. Im not the only mum who has put the same wash load on five or twelve times in a row because she keeps forgetting to hang it up once the cycle is finished.

Its not just the washing machine we forget about. How many times have you found a stone cold coffee/tea because you thought you’d have a quick caffeine hit before the beautiful little person you made decided that now would be the perfect time to throw a hissy fit or hurt themselves or PULL THE FUCKING CURTAINS DOWN. Seriously parenting is relentless.

But then, you go into their room (or your room) and look at them sleeping peacefully and  the day and all its bullshit just slips away. That tiny human who had you crying, screaming, cursing and planning a swift exit is now filling your whole body from head to toe with unexplainable amounts of love. You look at their tiny hands and realise they ant as tiny as they used to be; You look at how much they have grown and changed in such the short time they have been here and you realise how quickly all this horrific bullshit will pass.

Sometimes after a particularly rough parenting day where Jaxon has done ALL of the above I sit and cuddle him just a little longer than normal after he’s fallen asleep on my chest. Usually because by this point I’m too exhausted to move and too scared it will wake him in the transfer from me to his bed. But also to remind myself of how fast he is growing and how he won’t stay little forever.

There wasn’t really any point to this post other than to release the shit storm that was my day. So here is a picture of my gorgeous little beast. Dont let his angelic sleeping face fool you of the demonic little shit he really is.

 

 

Dealing with BAD mental health days

Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t been blogging recently and it’s because I decided to take a step back to focus on myself and my mental health.

I have been struggling with feeling extremely low, probably more than I ever have before. So that’s why I decided to make myself and my son my only priority, I started to look after me more. I stopped worrying so much about looking good for instagram or any other social media I have because lets face it. It’s really not important.

I have been making more of an effort to focus on things that bring me joy, like reading or cooking. I have read a few books in the past couple of weeks and I always feel so accomplished when I get to the end of a novel. I have loved reading for so many years but whenever I find myself slipping into a downward spiral I am unable to connect to any book. So the fact I have been able to read a few book goes to show how time away from the pressures of social media can help life your mood.

I have also revamped my kitchen (and living room) so now I actually enjoy being in the kitchen again. I have been cooking again! For those of you who know me IRL you know that since moving into this house I have barely cooked because I hate my new kitchen so much- its not that there is anything wrong with it, its just a huge step down from my old one. But I have fixed that issue and am enjoying searching Pinterest for new meal ideas and actually trying them! Cooking new meals each night has helped to get me out of the house too because I  have had to go out to buy the things I need for that night.

I have started watching a new TV box set on Netflix and I spend my evenings binge watching that with Matthew now instead of doing housework, and I find myself feeling so much calmer in the evenings since doing this, its been nice to just chill with my partner and eat chocolate and talk about the show together.

I have taken a step back from my scales (quite literally) as I was putting so much pressure on myself to be ‘skinny’. I am trying to embrace my mom bod and all of its jiggling glory. After all I grew a perfect human being, that has to come with a price. So instead of getting on my scales every single morning and starting my day off feeling miserable I have decided to start my day off with a coffee in bed while Matthew takes Jaxon downstairs for his breakfast. Its nice to start my day with 5 minutes calmly drinking a HOT coffee before the chaos starts.

I have decided to try something new to help with my confidence and I list 5 things I LIKE about myself every day. Just in my head, just as an affirmation for myself that I am enough just the way I am. Sometimes its the fact I have made an effort on my hair or make up. Or that I pushed myself to walk faster up the hill into town. Small things that help lift my mood.

I have unfollowed so any people on instagram who only left me feeling like I wasn’t good enough. I am trying to stop comparing myself to others even though its so hard because its what I have done my whole life but this way of thinking has such a detrimental effect on my mental health it has to stop. I am constantly looking at other peoples blogs, or instagrams or Twitter followers and questioning why I’m not as good as they are? Why can’t MY followers go up rather than down? Why haven’t I got those kind of page views? How do they get their pictures to look so good?

When in reality it doesn’t matter. Just because someone looks good online means nothing to how that person is in real life. They might have a million followers but be seriously lonely at home. They might have amazing instagram pictures that make them look flawless but they could be a nasty bitch in real life. What I’m trying to say is, social media doesn’t always show the truth. It only shows you what the person posting wants you to see, and sometimes its not reality.

I am dealing with my issues and my mental health by taking everything one day at a time. So for now I’m blogging again but I am making no promises for the future as to wether or not I shall continue blogging. For all I know I might pack my family up and move into the middle of nowhere with no technology, never to be seen again.

Nah just kidding, I need Netflix too much to do that.

 

Choices

Do you ever feel like you’re struggling with everything. Because I do.

I think about how my life could have been if I had made small changes when I was a teenager. How I could have travelled the world or gone back and lived in Florida.

I think about how I would be if I had finished uni or kept on working in a shitty job that made me redundant. Would I still be working there?? Would I be starting a career with my degree?

Would I still be where I’m at now in life? Or would everything be different?

I think about all of the small choices I’ve made over the past years and how so many small things could have made a huge impact on my life without me even realising it.

I think about what kind of future I’m going to have and if I’m going to be happy or if I’ll just stumble through.

I think that now I’ve had Jaxon I won’t ever live in Florida again, because I won’t ever take him away from his family that he adores so much and I couldn’t do that to my family either. I sure as hell won’t go when Jaxon is older because I won’t ever move that far away from my baby… so I guess I’m stuck living here until I can convince my entire family to up and move across the pond with me.

I think about what I will do when Jaxon is older and going to school because I don’t have a clue what I’m supposed to do with me life? I don’t want to go back to working in retail again or waitressing because both made me unbelievably miserable.

But I don’t know what I want to do with my life?

So I have to figure it out in the next couple years because I’ll need to do something when he’s in school.

I think about some of my friends who are the same age as me and they have bought houses, they are married and have careers and then there’s me? Like I have no clue what I did wrong or where I am going to go in the future and I don’t like the uncertainty of it if I’m honest.

I am always trying to plan my life and plan my future but nothing ever goes according to plan so why bother?

I just feel a little lost recently and I don’t like it.

What do you do that helps to calm you in moments like this? I could really use the help.

MakeUp

Recently I have found myself in a bit of a slump with my mood, I’ve been feeling really self conscious and self critical a lot lately and I have decided that enough is enough. So I set myself a challenge, I challenged myself to a week of making a real effort with my appearance. That means make up, hair and outfit; the job lot.

So for an entire week I made sure I woke up and had  enough time to spend on my make up before whatever I had planned for the day and while it is time consuming I have noticed a difference in myself since I have been making more of an effort. I feel happier and more confident. I still have days when I don’t like the way I look but I find myself being kinder to myself and more accepting of my flaws when I know I have made more of an effort.

I have been using fake eyelashes which were a complete pain in the ass the first few times to get on but now its getting easier and I am starting to really enjoy doing my make up; rather than it just being a mundane chore that I have to do every morning.

I have even found myself looking at new pallets and getting excited about the new combinations I can do and new looks I can create. I almost feel like I am getting a little bit of the old me back, the pre baby me. The me who had the time and energy to actually do her make up. Dont get me wrong I still have days where I don’t put anything on my face and shove my hair on the top of my head but at least I know that its not my constant look now.

Here are a few selfies of me with my make up on because I am feeling gooooooood in them.

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Play dough- How I made it

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen that I recently made Jaxon some non toxic play dough at home. When I say its easy to make I mean it, it took me less than 10 minutes from start to finish and has turned out amazingly!

I trolled the internet for a while looking for a recipe that didn’t take too much and didn’t take a long time to make because in all honesty I am lazy and didn’t want to spend a lot of money. Luckily I had almost all of the ingredients at home already, all I had to buy was  a few small bits that you can pick up in any grocery store!

So this is what you’ll need:

1 cup of flour (I used plain flour)

1 cup of water 

1/3 cup of salt (I just used the cheap table salt)

2 TEASPOONS of cream of tartar (this is found in the home baking section in most supermarkets)

1 TABLESPOON of vegetable oil

Any food colouring

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Step by step;

I put the flour, salt and cream of tartar in a pan (Hob OFF) gave it a mix through then added the vegetable oil and water.

Turn the hob on to a low/medium heat and start stirring the mixture while the hob gets warm. When the mixture starts to get a bit sticky add the food colouring, I used blue and red to make a purple colour and I had to use a lot of food colouring to get it to take.

Just keep mixing the pot of goop while it heats up and I kind of just went by my own judgement as to when it was done, it starts to get too stiff to mix and thats when I took it out of the hob and spooned the dough onto my chopping board to let it cool.

Mine was still a bit lumpy so while it was cooling I just played around with it to make it softer and smoother.

Jax loved it! We have played with it for over a week now and its not dried out at all (Obviously keep it in an air tight container when not being used) but I still think my favourite thing about this is that I know if Jax decided to put any in his mouth its not toxic, the salt isn’t great for him but a tiny amount of play dough isn’t going to hurt!

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If you give it a go please let me know how you get on!!

 

Keeping Up With The Housework

I know what you’re thinking, housework? You can’t keep up with it!

I have days, weeks or months where I can barely keep the house from falling apart. But recently I have been a domestic goddess. The laundry is being done, the kitchen is clean more often than not, I am able to vacuum the house a few times a week again AND I’m having the time to watch my TV shows.

I have no idea how I am doing it but let me tell you I am loving it. My house isn’t perfect but its far less disastrous than it has been.

I will let you in on a little secret, JAXON IS NAPPING.

If I go out he will nap on and off in his buggy which is great but he has never really been a cot napper. That has changed recently and he has been going down in his cot for his naps when I spend the day at home and he has slept for 1.5-2.5 hours a day. That time he gives me is when I blitz the house and try to get on top of the days mess. This is what I have been doing to keep on top of everything. I pick a room a day and make that room my bitch.

It gets tidied, vacuumed, dusted, and air freshened; Then if I have time left which, I usually do I sit down with a coffee and my laptop to either blog or do the online grocery shop.

I have to say I freaking LOVE these cot naps, they are literally saving my sanity and if Im honest I think its keeping my anxiety at bay. I truly do think that being able to keep my house clean and more importantly tidy it helping to keep my mind clean and tidy. Having the time to de clutter and sort out almost helps me de clutter and sort out my thoughts, which to some I know sounds stupid but it really helps me.

I have bought so many bottles of Zoflora because I found it on offer in my local Home Bargains. I gotta tell ya this stuff is like my drug of choice, it makes everything clean and my whole house smell delicious. I must have looked like a mad woman when I saw it on offer because I defiantly scooped the whole shelf load into my basket with one sweep.

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I have zero regrets.

I really hope this domestic goddess that has awoken inside of me doesn’t decide to take a vacation, I am really enjoying feeling like I have this ‘adulting’ thing down.

 

Baby No. 2

Before you go assuming, no I am not pregnant.

But we have been talking about it a lot recently, and its got me thinking about how different it would be with another baby. I mean I struggle with space as it is, how would another tiny human and all of the stuff the tiny baby would need fit in my already cluttered and crowded house?

I also worry about how I would cope being pregnant, after losing a baby and then having the complications with Jax. It is something I constantly think about. I worry about getting pre eclampsia again and having to be induced early, then having to worry about all of the possible side effects the early labour could have on my baby. I know I might not get pre eclampsia again but it is a high chance that I will and it worrys me.

I also think about who would look after Jaxon when I go to into labour. Obviously I will have Matthew with me and I would like my mum to be with me again but they are the only two people I would ever trust to have my baby. I mean if I end up having another C section I will more than likely be in the hospital for a few days again and I couldn’t leave Jax with anyone other than my mum or Matthew, so I need to consider this.

I also worry about how Jax will be if and when another baby comes along; he’s such a mummys boy (which I LOVE) but he gets so jealous when I hold another baby or play with another toddler too much. So I do worry about how it will effect him and how it will impact my relationship with him, I wouldn’t be able to cope if I destroyed the bond I have with him.

I would probably tandem feed if Jaxon hasn’t self weaned by the time the next baby comes along, but I am also worried about how exhausting it would be.

I worry about so much when it comes to having another baby but I think I won’t know how to handle any of this until the time actually comes.

 

Dealing With A Toddler

Since Jaxons started walking I can honestly say my life has changed so much. He is no longer finding his feet, this boy has found his feet and has taken off running and don’t I know it.

We have had so many bumps and bruises since he’s been walking and the amount of times he has made my heart stop when he has fallen its honestly too many to count! We have had split lips and bruised foreheads. Its so upsetting seeing his bumps and bruises but its one of the best things in the world seeing him explore and learn all of these new things so quickly.

Its true what they say, boys are constantly on the move and are such little daredevils. Jaxons new favourite game is to climb up onto the sofa, shout for me and once he has my attention he full speed runs off of the sofa and expects me to launch myself across the room to catch him. By the way I have caught him every single time, and got some bruises of my own to show for it. It gives me a heart attack every single time but his little laugh is still my favourite sound in the world and I’d do anything to hear that sound.

Toddlers are funny little things, the way they walk reminds me of a drunk person, the way they wobble about and stagger to the side when they lose their balance slightly. The way their little tummy seems to pop out just like a beer belly and how quickly they move their tiny feet because they are always in a hurry; this just melts my heart to see.

I recently took Jax into sainsburys with just his reins on as I was just nipping in to grab some dry shampoo for my sister and as I reached up to grab a can I heard such a loud noise and as I looked down all I could see was Jaxons little grin as he continued to pull shampoo and conditioner off of the shelves and onto the floor. Of course as I started to pick them up and put them back he then thought this was a great game and started pulling more off quicker than I could pick them up. Luckily a kind lady offered to help me put them back as she too said she had been in this exact situation before.

I love the toddler temper tantrums because they are completely ridiculous. Jaxon once threw a temper tantrum because he wanted his water bottle so I gave him his water bottle and this apparently wasn’t acceptable so que the meltdown. Holy hell he completely freaked out at me, threw himself on the floor and screamed, I am still not sure what I did wrong but according to Jaxon I was seriously out of line.

Or the time I stopped Jaxon from falling off the sofa backwards this caused him to start screaming and kicking, still have no idea what I did wrong but it must have been something huge to him because the tantrum he threw was record breaking.

You gotta love toddlers.