Thursday, 6 October 2011

Win a £485 Bebecar Pushchair with

Thursday, 19 May 2011

My new home....

I have taken the plunge and decided to get myself a new blog so will not longer be using this one as from today.  If you have been reading this then please follow me at my new home-

Thanks and look forward to seeing you there! 

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Your Challenge should you wish to accept it...

Did you know that the 16-25th May 2011 is Real Nappy Week?

No I didn't either...until I was approached by Bambino Mio who invited me and seven other Mummy Bloggers to use one real nappy a week instead of a disposable one.

I jumped at the chance at having a go at the challenge as I have always wondered about using real nappies but if am honest, have never had the motivation to get out there and try it.

I have some preconceptions about using real nappies and I am interested to see whether these views will change throughout the week.  

1. Firstly I worry about them being too time consuming and too much hard work when I am busy enough as it is being a first time Mum.

2. I worry about them being messier than disposable nappies.

3. I worry about the initial cost of buying all the kit.

I did like the idea of using real nappies when I was pregnant with Mads as I know that they are better for the environment, and they will also save you money in the long term but we, like a lot of families, are real fans of ways of saving time in our busy lives.  If I am honest, although I liked the idea of using real nappies, it never entered my head to use anything other than disposables.

That is why I am looking forward to trying the Real Nappy Challenge and I am hoping it will change my way of thinking.

The challenge is simple, (I hope!) all we need to do is use one real nappy a day for a week and then let everyone know how we get on.  

A large, daunting looking box arrived in the post last week and I must admit I was a little nervous when I opened it up and saw all the kit.

However on first inspection and after having a quick read of the instructions I must admit it looks so simple.  Even for me who was never any good at Origami and putting together folded boxes!  

The challenge starts tomorrow and I am looking forward to having a go and getting Mr E to join in too!  

Wish us luck!

Check out the other Mummy Bloggers taking part-

Mothers Always Right

Northern Mum with Southern Children

Whimsical Wife


Mummy Musings

Knees up Mother Brown

Mummy Mummy Mum

Silent Sunday...

Silent Sunday

Saturday, 14 May 2011

What kind of world am I raising my daughter in?

The news story dominating the headlines today is the tragic event in Tenerife, in which it appears that a British national was picked at random in a supermarket and stabbed and beheaded in front of shocked tourists.

Not a nice subject for my blog quite frankly but I can't seem to get it out of my head.  It really has made me wonder what kind of world Mads is going to grow up in.

When I look back to my childhood, it was idyllic.  I am not saying that bad things didn't happen and serious crimes weren't committed, of course they were.  But it was safer than it was now, or at least maybe we weren't so aware of everything.  I would go out for hours on my bike, build dens with my friends and roam around in the woods near my house.  I didn't have a mobile phone so couldn't contact my Mum every few minutes to let her know that I was alright, but she assumed as long as I came back every couple of hours to check in, that I was safe and well.  Obviously this was when I was old enough to know the dangers of talking to strangers etc, but I was streetwise and remember my childhood as generally being a very safe and carefree time.

Fast forward to today and I feel it is a very different story.  Perhaps serious crimes aren't being committed more but we all have to be a lot more aware of what is going on.  As a mother to a baby girl, I am worried for her when she becomes a teenager.  Girls seem to be a lot more sexualised and the Internet has become a frightening place, I feel, for our children.  My sister is ten years younger than me, and I remember when she was a few years younger, we had to stop her from placing innocent photos of herself in a bikini on her then 'bebo' account.  Nowadays Facebook accounts have better privacy laws to stop people getting onto your profile but still they could fall into the hands of the wrong person.

We have the fear of terrorist attacks, and we have teenagers killing each other just for being in the wrong postcode.  I know that these are still rare events but I can't help but think that you can't turn on the television without reading a distressing story.  I have been to Tenerife a few times and I can't believe that such a macabre act would happen in a quiet resort like that.  To me the world just seems to be getting a more violent and frightening place, or is just that I am more aware of it now I am a mother?

I have already mentioned in a previous post about posting photos of Mads online, I find it so upsetting that I worry about showing off photos of my daughter, for fear of them getting into the wrong hands.  At the end of the day I am not stupid enough to show her without clothes, they are innocent shots, but the fact that we even have to think about these things, I think is a real shame.

I, like any other parent, would do absolutely anything to protect my daughter.  But does that mean that I will have to wrap her up in cotton wool?  I want her to grow into a well rounded, streetwise individual, not a scared, clingy one.  Will she be able to have an innocent childhood like I did, camping out overnight in a tent in a park about twenty foot from our house, where my Mum could see us from the window?  Unfortunately I don't think that this will be the case as we are more aware of what potentially could go wrong.

I know this isn't a particularly cheery post first thing on a Saturday, but I really have woken up this morning, wondering what kind of world we are now living in, and what kind of world it will be when Mads is older.  As I looked at her in her moses basket smiling up at me, it really made a tear come to my eye.  I want her to stay innocent forever, and not have to realise the dangers of the world around us.  At the moment she is my baby, and will do a beaming smile at anyone, it will be such a shame when I have to tell her otherwise.

Friday, 13 May 2011

CyberMummy Meet and Greet.

So I am very excited that I was lucky enough to get hold of a ticket to go to Cybermummy this year.  I am very new to blogging and saw lots of people talking about 'Cybermummy' on twitter, but by the time I finally got confident to ask about what it was all about, it had sold out!  I was disappointed as it sounded right up my street and I really want to learn more about blogging and meet some of the friends I have made so far.

That's when I heard through the grapevine (well twitter actually!) that someone was selling a ticket.  Woo hoo- I practically ripped the ticket out of her hand before she could say anything, and now I am a soon to be Cybermummy attendee!

Carly at Mummys Shoes is hosting a meet and greet so people can introduce themselves before they arrive, which is fab for me as a relative newbie!

Without further ado...

Name: Kat

Twitter ID: @mummydaddyme

Height: 5ft 6 and a half. (the half makes all the difference)

Hair: Browny, down to my shoulders.

Eyes: Blue

Likes: Travelling, Sun, Chocolate, Vanilla Ice cream, Diet Coke, Angel Delight, Photography, Reading, Cuddles, Apple (the company not the fruit, although the fruit isn't bad!)

Dislikes: Horseradish, selfish people, unfriendly people, wasps, coffee, people cracking their knuckles.

I really can't wait to meet everyone, so if you are going do comment and let me know. 

Here is me and Mads, my lovely girl!

See you all in June!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

The Gallery- Chilled Out

This weeks theme for The Gallery is 'Chilled Out.'

There are many ways in which I personally like to relax and unwind- lying in a nice bath with candles and reading my book, watching television in the evenings while cuddling up to Mr E, getting into my dressing gown super early and having a large glass of white wine.  I could go on.  I think I am most chilled out when on holiday, I am happiest in the sun, lying on a sun lounger, reading my book with a cocktail in my hand.  All the stresses of life are forgotten when you are on holiday.  Although I realise it won't be quite as relaxing now Mads is on the scene!

Which is why I couldn't pick just one photo for my post this week when I have two which perfectly sum up the theme in my eyes.

The 'old' life...travelling is one of my passions and I honestly enjoy nothing better than having the sun on my face.  (although I have recently started getting the dreaded crows feet so ought to reign it in a little!)

The 'new' life which I would not change for the world.  Mads is a very chilled out baby who can sleep anywhere.  In this photo I put her down for about two minutes to put some clothes away in her wardrobe and this is what happened! (I put her in her moses basket after taking the photo- I am not that cruel to let her sleep on the carpet!)  I know it will change as she gets older but it never ceases to amaze me that she can sleep anywhere and through anything!  We went to a charity pub quiz with all my family a couple of weeks ago and were going to leave early but she ended up sleeping under the table.  I am very lucky that she is a 'chilled out' baby who rarely cries. (although she does have her moments!)

So there you have it.  Two very different interpretations of 'chilled out' but both perfect in their own way.

Now head over to Tara and check out the other entries...

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Breastfed babies develop fewer behavioural problems?

Another day and another study has been conducted which suggests babies that are breastfed for four or more months are less likely to develop behavioural problems.

The 'Millenium Cohort Study' looked at the feeding habits of 10,037 mothers and their babies.  They were asked to assess the problems in their children by the time they reached the age of five including lying, stealing and clinginess.  Only 6% of breastfed children showed some of these traits, compared to 16% of formula fed babies.  

Mothers who breastfeed tend to be older ladies from a higher socio-economic background and are more highly educated. But even after adjusting their research to take this into account they still found a 30% increased risk of behavioral problems in breastfed babies.

I have been exclusively breastfeeding Mads who is now 19 weeks old and I have written before about the struggles I have had with nursing her.  It most certainly hasn't been easy but for a number of reasons I was determined to continue.  However I was lucky that I found a wonderful breastfeeding councillor and had great support from my Mum and Mr E.

However I can't help but wonder what affect these kind of studies have on those who would like to breastfed but can't for whatever reason, and how it makes them feel,

A friend of mine with a baby the same age as Mads got severe post natal depression and had to stop breastfeeding because of the anti-depressant medication she was on.  Out of a group of eight of us she is the only one to be formula feeding and she often says she feels like she has to justify to others why she gave up.  Another friend of mine whose baby is a little older says she feels guilty every time someone mentions breastfeeding and often wishes she tried harder to carry on.  Am I the only one who thinks that women should not be made to feel guilty for their choices?

What about women who don't have the support available like I did?  The first two weeks every time Mads latched on I cried in agony and the only reason I carried on to start with is because my Mum and Mr E helped me by hiring me a hospital grade breast pump and holding my hand while she latched on.  They even massaged my breasts for me when I got mastitis because I couldn't do it myself.  What about ladies who don't have this support?  Surely studies like this actively promoting 'breast is best' often make people feel terrible for the choices they have made.

While I do agree that we should be encouraging women to breastfeed as it is proven that it is a very healthy choice for babies, I do think that studies like this unfortunately make women who have been unable to or who have chosen not to, feel guilty or pressurised.

I was formula fed from birth and my sister was breastfed and there has always been a joke in my family that she is the 'naughty' one.  I had no behavioural problems growing up and have no allergies or health problems except slight hay fever.  I know that we are just one family, but I just think every time a new study comes out actively promoting the benefits of breastfeeding we should think of those women, like my friend, who decided not to breastfeed, or my other friend who physically couldn't, who will unnecessarily be feeling guilty about the new findings in research.

To read the full news story go to BBC News

Monday, 9 May 2011

My 'fake' chest and my first night out!

So this weekend had a lot of firsts for me.

1. The first time I was away from Mads for more than a couple of hours.
2. The first time I have been out drinking properly in about a year.
3. The first time I dressed as a ladybird.
4. And the first time someone asked me if my boobs were real or fake.

This weekend I went to Manchester for my friend's hen do.  If I am perfectly honest I was absolutely dreading it for a number of reasons, the main one being the complications with breastfeeding.  Luckily Mr E's parents live near Manchester so he travelled up with Mads and went to his Mum's so at least they were both close by.  I was originally due to be staying the night with the other hen's but decided that I would rather go back to his Mum's later on at around 12am.  I was so nervous about the lack of breastfeeding as I was away from Mads most of the day and the night.

I had expressed a lot of milk for her throughout the week so I wasn't worried about this but I was concerned about how my boobs were going to cope with her not feeding off them for a long time.  The breast pump I use is a hospital grade electric monster so I didn't feel comfortable bringing that with me.  I therefore bought a rubbish, cheap manual pump to use.  

We went to an 80's dance lesson and ouch they were hurting as I was bobbing around to Flashdance and Fame.  (Badly I might add- I have the rhythm of a dying wasp)  We then got home and while we were all getting ready to go out I sat on the bed and attached myself to this manual pump.  It took about half an hour to get even an ounce from one side, it was just awful and by the end of doing it my hand was hurting rather a lot.  We then got dressed in our ladybird outfits and played some drinking games and therefore I didn't have chance to express again, so armed with spare breast pads (oh the glamour!) off out I went.  

It wasn't long before I started to notice that my breasts were causing a bit of a stir. (And that wasn't just me being self confident because I had a few Vodka and Oranges in me!)  Lots of sleazy, drunken men were having a sneaky peek at my red and black ladybird chest.  Now I have never been as flat as a pancake but this new found attention was rather out of the blue and alarming.

Myself and two other girls were sat down in one bar when a guy from a stag do asked to take a photo of us.  Being rather tipsy by this point we didn't protest but just smiled awkwardly at the camera before we realised that it wasn't being pointed at the three of us at all, the cheeky sod was pointing it directly at my boobs.  My friend shrieked at him and asked him what he was doing.  He just laughed and said that him and his friends were wondering if they were fake or real.  Even in my drunken state, I have never been so embarrassed in my life and my cheeks went as red as my ladybird outfit. 

However the whole situation became even more mortifying when my friend turned to the guy and said 'No they are not fake, they are full of milk to feed her baby thank you very much.'  At that point if the ground had opened up, I would have happily jumped inside.  Needless to say the man couldn't have run away quick enough.

Mr E came to pick me up around midnight and by the time he arrived, my breasts were painful, swollen, rock hard and could have easily given Pamela Anderson a run for her money.  Not only that but they were so veiny!  Not a good look at all, and when I got back to his mum's I had to express for ages.  And let me tell you, operating a breast pump while drunk is not easy at all!

All in all, embarrassing incidents aside, I had a great time.  It was nice to let my hair down and feel like I was back in the old days again.  However I also realised that I am no longer as confident as I was.  I have never been particularly confident about the way I look but I felt really self conscious in my outfit and look back at the photos that were taken and cringe.  I really don't like my post pregnancy figure.  However my body brought me Mads and I missed her like crazy, even for a short time.  Going out made going home to her even better.

On the plus side as well, I now have a very cheap night out.  A couple of glasses is more than enough for me!  And I am proud I survived another feeding milestone!!

Friday, 6 May 2011

Flashback Friday- Our first holiday together.

Mr E and I's first holiday abroad together was to Cuba.  Since then we have been extremley fortunate and have travelled to some wonderful places all over the world but no holiday has had quite the anticipation as that first time. We were in our newly together phase and were so thrilled to be going away with each other.  We booked it last minute and managed to get the holiday for £500 each all inclusive which is obviously a really good deal to go long haul.

The flight was long and tedious, as we travelled with Thomas Cook and had to touch down on one side of the island to let some people off before flying over to our side.  This was tiring and not fun for someone who doesn't like flying. (me!)  When we got there it was then a long transfer to where we were staying.  It had been raining and it was really late at night and the air was so humid and wet.  We got to our hotel and we were greeted with the most awful smell of damp and as it was so late were given the dregs of the buffet which was cold and not very tasty.  When they escorted us to our rooms I sat down on the bed and it felt wet with damp.  I have been very fortunate to generally stay in very nice hotel's due to my job and I was so upset and just didn't feel comfortable.  We asked to change rooms and the next room was slightly better but I still wasn't totally happy.  I think everything seems worse at night, especially as we were so tired.

Fast forward to the morning and the sun was beaming through the curtains.  We went down to breakfast and although the food wasn't amazing, it wasn't too bad.  Everything seemed a lot better and I felt much more optimistic.

And I was right to be optimistic.  Although it wasn't the best hotel in the world, everyone was very friendly and we really had the most fabulous first holiday together.  We drank cocktails and got tipsy every night and sunbathed and ate all day!  We went swimming with the dolphins which was one of the most amazing experience of my life and we have a lovely video to treasure.

What made the hotel for me was the beach.  I have been fortunate enough to be to go to some wonderful hot countries, including Thailand, Barbados and Mexico, all of which cost a lot more money, but none of them had as beautiful beaches as Cuba.

I have never seen such clear water as we did on those beaches.  The above photos are not edited in any way- it really was that blue.

We went on a day trip to Havana which was really interesting- Mr E used to invent cocktails so we spent to two famous bars, one where the Dacquri was invented, and we also looked around the Havana Club Rum factory.  A lot of Mojito's were drunk!  We also loved looking at all the old Classic cars which are very popular over there and learning about the history between them and the US.  (They have a long standing history which means that no American products are allowed in Cuba and Americans don't tend to visit.)

All in all it really was the most amazing holiday.  We were young, had no worries and were totally wrapped up in one another and even though we had initial concerns with our hotel, for the price it was fine.  We have been very lucky to go on some wonderful holidays and although money is tight now we have Mads, I really love travelling and do hope to go on some more great trips. (Although not this year!)  However amazing, they will never have that anticipation of that first, carefree holiday and because of this I will treasure the memories forever.

Head over to Karin's abode and check out some more Flashback Friday's...

Thursday, 5 May 2011

To Wean or not to Wean?

I have decided that I am going to do a weaning diary/project on my blog over the coming months which will highlight how I am getting on with weaning Mads, from her very first taste to when she can start eating proper meals.  I already have been sent some interesting products to review and I hope that we can look back on it when she is older and think that it was a success, as well as help any other weaning Mums that may stumble upon this blog.

Yesterday I went to a weaning discussion at my local Surestart centre.  I was hoping that I would come back fully armed with information in regards to starting to give Mads her first food's.  Unfortunately although the talk was really interesting and helpful, in a way it did make me more confused.

Mads is going through a 'phase.'  She has gone from sleeping through for almost twelve hours to waking every few hours crying and not settling.  Sometimes I feed her but she takes about three minutes and then falls back to sleep so I am not sure if it is hunger.  Sometimes she just cries and I manage to settle her.  Three times this week she has ended up coming into our bed in the early hours of the morning which is what I really didn't want to start doing.

I do not know if it is teething or that she is hungry but something is definitely different.  I went and got her weighed this morning and she now weighs 14lbs so she has dropped down the growth chart slightly. I mentioned to her about maybe starting her on some baby rice but she advised that it might be better to give her a formula milk feed at night to try and fill her up more.  I have reservations about this though as I have managed to breastfeed her up until now with my fair share of struggles, I think if I can just struggle on another 3 or 4 weeks then maybe I can just start her on food.

I had made up my mind to start Mads on some baby rice this week but after going to the talk yesterday they explained that the World Health Organisation recommends that babies are exclusively breastfed until 6 months and food should not be introduced before 22 weeks at the earliest.  Mads is 19 weeks tomorrow.  That said I know a lot of babies that have gone onto solids earlier than six months and are absolutely fine.

I have been looking at the Annabel Karmel book series on Weaning which look brilliant so I shall go and buy a few when I next get paid my maternity pay as I think they will help when deciding on recipes.       I am going to try and make a lot of my own things for her but also use some of the better brands of baby food.  I am looking forward to helping her learn about food and try new tastes and can't wait to start but think I will try and hold off another couple of weeks.

When did you wean your little ones?  Did they like food?  What was their first taste?  I really am looking forward to her trying food but at the same time it is a little daunting.  I keep saying I shall make her lots of different meals but this is coming from the girl who can't cook to save her life and finds beans on toast taxing to prepare.  However I am determined to give her lots of variety so I would really like to prepare her own food plus use prepared baby food as well.  Next mission is to buy a blender!

Wish me look and keep reading to see how I get on!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

The Gallery- April

So the theme for this week over at Sticky Finger's is April.

Normally I associate April with the dreaded April Showers, a time when it is not yet hot enough to go without a coat and when the rain makes the days seem a lot more dreary.

However this April we have had some beautiful weather, and it feels like Summer well and truly hit the streets of Britain.  Although I draw the line at seeing men with their tops off walking down the street (nor in August either please- its not nice trying to do my shopping in Tescos and seeing white pasty torsos with moobs!) I do love seeing us all get excited about the hot weather and I made sure my toes were nicely polished ready for the return of my flip flops from the back of the wardrobe!

April marked a few firsts for my new little family of three but there is one photo that sums up our month- below is a photo of our first picnic together.  For me picnics sum up summertime and also family fun, it is a low cost, lovely way of getting outdoors and enjoying Britain and being together as a family.  I am looking forward to doing many more as Mads gets older.

Apparently July and August are going to be a washout (don't they always say this?) so I think its good we are getting these in these Summery activities now.  Of course we also had other firsts...both mine and Mads first Royal Wedding, our first Easter as a three, and Mads first trip to the seaside.  We also had two lovely bank holidays to enjoy.

All in all April has been rather lovely!

Now head over to The Gallery and see what April meant to some other lovely bloggers...

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

One of many fashion shames....

So the Tots 100 Blog Hop this month is all about 'fashion shames.'  I can safely say that I have my fair share, and I am going to share one with you now.

Let me take a deep breath and admit something to you all....

I used to dress like a Chav.  

Actually I just looked up the definition of Chav online and apparently I am a Chavette.  

There I said it.  It is now out in the open and I have told my deepest, darkest secret.  I am not a Chav, and never have been a Chav (I went to Private School dahling-albeit on a scholarship!) but I went through a period of time that I thought it was acceptable to have bleached blond hair, dark heavy eyeshadow, and more fake tan than you could even imagine.  The best thing about the aforementioned fake tan is that I could not apply it properly which you can see from my white patches in the photo below.

My outfits wouldn't of been out of place in your local red light district.

Please see example above.

No we are not in fancy dress.  I actually made the decision to leave the house like this and no one had the decency to stop me.
I am the one on the left.  Note the yellow hair to match my rather short skirt.  The heavy makeup and the rather delightful hoop earrings.  Also why we thought it was good to wear matching outfits I do not know.

Yes I know I look like Barbie on crack with a pimp for a boyfriend instead of the lovely Ken.

There is much more evidence where this came from but for now they are staying hidden.  I have to maintain some dignity.

At least I have managed to get it off my chest.  Please don't have nightmares.

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Should I post photo's of my daughter online?

This is a subject that has been really bothering me all week and I have spent some time on twitter asking people's advice.

I am very new to the world of blogging and for the first time on Tuesday I checked where the traffic was coming from on my blog.  I found that a few people that were searching for disgusting things on google had been coming to my site.  Not many, and to be fair it didn't look like they had stayed long, but still if after a month of blogging this is happening surely it can only get worse?

When I first started blogging I wasn't going to reveal my real name and I most certainly wasn't going to put on photo's of me and my family.  However when I started looking into blogs and started to put together my own reading list I discovered that a lot of mummy bloggers did post photos of their children.  I am exceptionally proud of my daughter so I thought well why not?  Plus I also noticed that the blogs that I enjoy the most are ones with personal photo's on there, these are the one's which seem to engage me and grab my attention.

All was well and I was really enjoying blogging about my family and putting photos on of Mads for my Gallery and Silent Sunday posts.  Then on Tuesday I found out excitedly that I could check my stats and see all sorts of reports on how people were getting to my site and how they were finding me on google.  Some completely innocent, some a little bit strange. (A lot of people have found my site by looking up Hairy Daddy?!)  And then a few people were finding it by looking up obscene search words.  

When I first saw this I completely panicked and posted on twitter asking for advice.  I got some lovely reassurance from Karin at Cafe Bebe, and also Emma at The Real Supermum and Karen at Would like to be a Yummy Mummy who also explained that they had the same worries.  (If you click on their two blog names you will be directed to their thoughts on the subject.)  I also spoke at long length with Mr E who said that as long as I was careful why should I stop doing something that I enjoyed, at the end of the day there could be weirdo's looking at Mads in Tesco's, and if you thought that way you would never leave the house.  I decided it was right to be cautious but to put it down as a lesson learned.

Today however I have checked again and now I have noticed that I have been getting a lot of hits from a referring URL which is an image sharing website.  Again this could be completely innocent but I am now worried that people are sharing my photos.  I have decided that I am going to try and put a Copyright logo on my images from now on (or when I can get Mr E to design me one!) but again it has made me wary.

I understand that this sort of thing happens a lot and that I shouldn't be so sensitive but the thought of someone looking at my photos of Mads in a strange way or sharing my photos as their own makes me feel physically sick.  I have spoken to my Mum about it too, as well as discussing it with Mr E again and they have said that I should just relax and try not too worry but I do find it really difficult.  I don't want to stop posting photo's but I just have this at the back of my mind now and I am finding it really hard to shake it off.  When it comes to my personal facebook account I have thousands of photos on there but I have the maximum privacy levels so only friends can look at my photos and content, therefore why am I posting photos on my blog which is completely open and free to all?

Am I being over sensitive?  Should I just accept that I am putting on innocent photos that you could see in any magazine or television advert?  Should I stop putting photos of her and my family on there?  If I prefer blogs that have photos on does that mean I will lose potential readers by not adding them?  Does everyone get dodgy searches?

If anyone has any comments I would really appreciate it.

Friday, 29 April 2011

Flashback Friday- The One Where We Get Engaged

As there is a rather small, low key wedding going on today, I felt like it was only right that my Flashback Friday for this week had a wedding theme.  Last week was my hen do and this week I have decided to take a trip down memory lane and write about the day Mr E decided to ask me to be his wife.

Mr E and I were living with my Mum at the time to save up some money for a deposit on a house, having moved back to Cambridgeshire from London.  He had told me that we were doing something exciting one weekend so as to make sure I didn't make any plans.  I had been going on and on about going to Go Ape so I honestly thought this was where we were going!

On the Thursday evening before said weekend we went out with my Mum and her partner to celebrate Mr E's 30th birthday as my Mum's partner was going on a climbing holiday and wouldn't be around for his actual birthday which was the following week.  We had a lovely time and drank lots of champagne and were quite tipsy so when Mr E awoke around 6am on the Friday morning I presumed it was because he was a bit hungover.

He was tossing and turning and obviously couldn't sleep so in the end I asked him what was wrong.  He turned round and out of the blue said 'Look under your pillow I think a fairy has been.'  I had just woken up and hadn't got my contact lenses in so was all disorientated!  I looked under the pillow and pulled out a small box.  I still don't think it really sank in but all of a sudden he uttered the best words 'Will you Marry me?'  I started crying my eyes out and jumping round the room.  My engagement ring was a beautiful platinum solitaire diamond.

He presented me with a goody bag which had lots of different bits in it including two plane tickets to Edinburgh for later on that afternoon.  He also had arranged for me to have my nails done that morning (in order to look my best for showing off the ring!)  He also arranged for some of my family to meet us in a bar near us for a champagne breakfast.

That afternoon we flew up to Edinburgh and it was one of the best weekends of my life.  We spent the daytimes mooching around the shops (where I also got terribly spoilt with perfume and a new purse!) and the first evening he had booked for us to go to Harvey Nichols for dinner.  One memorable part was when we decided to order a bottle of champagne.  As we were deciding the waiter came over with the bottle we were going to pick (Laurent Perrier Rose if anyone ever fancies buying me a bottle- its my favourite!) and a card.  We were totally confused until we opened it and my Mum had bought us one with a little card saying Congratulations.  That made me cry again!  The tables are quite close together and I dread to think what the couple next door thought of us!

The second night it was amazing because it was late August and the festival was just ending.  There was a lovely fireworks display on which was very romantic.  We got very tipsy as we went on a mini bar crawl.

Below is a small snapshot of photos from the weekend.

All in all it was a wonderful weekend, and Mr E made me the happiest person in the world when he asked me to be his wife.  Who would have thought that three years later we would have a lovely baby daughter!

Now head over to Cafe Bebe to have a look at some more memories...

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

My Passions...

I stumbled upon a rather good meme from Kerry at Multiple Mummy which is all about her passions and asking us what ours are too.  I love having a good think about things like this so here goes.  Below are a few of the examples of what I am passionate about!


I have a passion for taking photos.  I am not particularly creative when it comes to photography although I do try.  I have a Nikon D50 DSLR which I love but never get out much because I don't really know how to use it. (I would love to learn) I also have just a cheap Canon which I carry around with me everyday and also my pride and joy which is my Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3.  My hubby bought it for my birthday a couple of years ago and I just love it.  I also take a lot of photos on my iPhone.
I really do wish that I was better at it, I would love to learn how to take more artistic shots.


Leading on from the photography, I also am passionate about my photos.  I literally have hundreds and I spend a lot of money on making photo books to capture all our memories.  My friends and family get fed up with me because I am forever taking photos when we are out and about.  I also have so many photos in frames around my house, a lot of people don't like having them up around the house but to me they are my pride and joy.  (Although they do involve a lot of dusting!)  I am trying to do a photo scrapbook for Mads but unfortunately I never seem to have the time.


I am a real film buff and Mr E and I used to go to the cinema all the time before we had Mads as we had an unlimited cinema pass.  Unfortunately we don't get the time as much anymore, although my Mum often has Mads so we can nip off for a couple of hours.  I am afraid I do love chick flicks but I also love thrillers, and dramas.  I like a bit of everything really though, although I draw the line at Westerns.  I used to love horror films but find myself getting scared of them nowadays.  If I had to say my top five favourite films, in no particular order they would be Leon, Mystic River, Shawshank Redemption, Brokedown Palace, and Dirty Dancing but I do have many I love.

Our home.

We bought our house almost two years ago and it was horrible inside when we first got it.  We have spent a lot of time and money on it and have almost completely redone it cosmetically since we moved in.  I am so proud of it, and keep it obsessively clean.  When we have finished one room, I want to move on and do another one again but now I am on maternity leave unfortunately I can't buy as much for it.  Although we want to move to a bigger house in a couple of years, I will always love my first home.  Mr E has had a mortgage before me.


I have always enjoyed reading for as long as I can remember.  I read all sorts of different things, from Chick Lit to Thrillers.  I read very quickly and always have my head absorbed in a good book, although recently I have found myself not having as much time as I am always blogging when not looking after Mads!  On our honeymoon I took away 15 books in 2 weeks and read every single one.  I can not wait to read to Mads, I do read to her occasionally but I am really looking forward to reading her a story every night and reliving my childhood favourites through her.  I have lots but 'The Faraway Tree' by Enid Blyton and all the Roald Dahl books have fond memories for me.

Crime Psychology

A bit of a strange passion but I have always been interested in crime.  At University I studied Psychology and wrote my dissertation on Murder.  Don't worry I am not a closet weirdo, but I am really interested in what makes criminals tick and have a lot of books on the subject.  I watch Crimewatch every month and know a lot about historical crimes.  Mr E thinks I am a bit strange!

Trashy TV

Embarrassing I know and not really a passion but a big interest of mine.  I wish it wasn't but I have to admit I love trashy TV shows.  The Only Way is Essex, Katie Price, Take me Out, X Factor, Big Brother....anything trashy I love.  I love all reality TV as well.  

My daughter

I know everyone is passionate about their children, but Mads is a new passion of mine.  I am determined to enjoy every minute of my time off work with her and we are doing lots of activities.  So far we are doing Baby Yoga, Baby Massage, Swimming Lessons, Baby Singing and soon we will be doing Baby Signing.  I love reading books about her development too.


I absolutely love travelling and have been very fortunate to go to some wonderful places.  My favorite places in the world I have visited would be New York, Miami, Thailand, Barbados, Cuba, Mexico, Paris and Barcelona but I have been too many others.  Mr E always go abroad every year, even if it is just a cheapie holiday to Spain but unfortunately I do not think that we will be able too with MadsMads.

So there you have it, the above are just a few of my passions.  Hope it helped get to know me better!

Now I want to know about a couple of more people so I am going to tag these lovely two-

Mummy and the Beastie

Mummy, Mummy, Mum