Simple Sunday’s

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Some recent posts have been focused on family life and sometimes the imbalance of the ‘trench’ years-we are all living it and loving it most of the time and over the almost 5 years of being a parent I have found in most aspects keeping it ‘simple’ is key. Not overcomplicating things makes it easier for all whether that is food, activities, games, crafting, baking, plans…

After one hell of a couple of weeks it was time to get a routine back, get back to basics and set this next month off on the right foot.

Weeks are so busy, set routines, shopping, working, cooking, cleaning, sleeping-sort of, baths, play, swimming, playball, jobs, more jobs, luas, bus, creche drop, creche collect-the week just flies by but the weekends are for catching up… sleep, family, friends and fun!

Saturdays usually have some plan attached, Josh normally has swimming, me the gym and then we might have one or two things to get done or people we’ve planned to meet… More often than not Sunday’s don’t and more so recently and this works well for us. It’s becoming our sacred family day. Sometimes later in the day Ian might go watch a game or I’ll nip to a perfectly pitched yin yoga class but the day is spent together, usually just the 4 of us. It might be a playground and coffee, it might be a road trip to one of our favourite spots or it might be a slightly more planned visit to something we’ve seen that’s on or somewhere we’ve wanted to visit… it’s usually the best day of the week.

By keeping it simple, not over complicating the day it tends to set the week out better and once the boys are in bed-a good meal, a dose of Netflix and a yummy treat with a cuppa usually sets up the week ahead on the right foot. It’s a formula that works so we just need to stick to it!

If only every Sunday was this sunny it would be an easy one to stick to!

2018 where are you?

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Hello spring are you there? Sure we are almost at summer and I’ve heard a lot of people say it doesn’t even feel like the year has even gotten started. I for one feel the exact same.

2018 was always going to be a year of change for the Felton’s. Ian started a new job, Josh would be starting school and we would be changing up our childcare as a result. We planned to get savings underway to finally get a chance to clear some small debit and look to getting a mortgage maybe next year. The world had other plans…and I’m not even talking about the snow that set everyone back a little.

In January we got news of Josh’s teeth, this had a knock on affect on a lot of things. I also found a lump on my breast that after several weeks of monitoring/doctors visits it turned out fine, thank god. I had also been struggling with my anxiety since later last year and these 2 events along with a number of small things going on in the background made it become unmanageable. I cant put my finger on the exact trigger but it also started to affect my mood/outlook and as much as I hate to admit it I think Josh picked up on a couple of things too and that was what spurred me to head back to my GP. I have been taking a low med for a few years now but decided to up my dose, my concern was Max is still feeding once or twice a day and I didn’t want to contend with stopping that too so the GP assured me that the % was so low that the benefit outweighed the ‘risk’. The cliché is a cliché for a reason-happy mama, happy babas so I went this advice and I’m slowly seeing the benefit. If something is not working try and change it for the better..

I am a real believer in if you have a positive mind, positive things will happen. In this crazy world we live in it can be hard to not let a bit of negativity drip in. However I have found more often than not that if you wake in the morning, you have a bright outlook suddenly even small things start going your way-‘you catch the bus, there is a place for you to sit in the coffee shop, the thing you hoped would be left in the shop is…there is a parking space’-you know the drill. With kids the predictability of life is challenging, the lack of sleep, the tantrums, the sickness that you can contend with on a daily basis, but this is stuff that all parents deal with on some level so moaning and groaning about it doesn’t help anyone it only puts you into that negative mind-set….and on the flip side you have kids that bring you daily joy and love and that is hard to beat. I have had to adapt my ways as most parents do, go with the flow a lot more-let go of the little stuff, focus on what is really important at any given time and that has been good for me-that’s what kids do-they ground you.

I wish for security for our family, I work part time but even looking at returning full time would not pay the dividend required to secure a home. We would love to grow our family at some stage in the future but right now that seems like a big mountain to climb. I think hope has to return, I read a quote recently-dreaming is a form of planning and as a natural planner this quote sticks well with me..but right now over planning ain’t for me!

So here’s to dreaming, here’s to positivity and here’s to the rest of 2018 kick starting the way so many of us thought it should!

Family Market

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Next week is the start of the Paddy’s Day/Easter madness and I will have a post up next week on some activities that have caught my eye and some other ideas too.

After the Patrick’s Day parades this market falls on the weekend that then kicks off Easter week, this day next week in fact. It sounds to me like a perfect Sunday family activity. I have popped down to this market before and it’s worth the trip for the food alone so throw into the mix some kids activites too and it’s a winner for me. See details below:

What: Easter Spring Family Market

When: 20th of March, 11am-5pm

Where: Dublin Food Coop, 12 Newmarket, Dublin 8

It will be a regular thing now, every second month on the third Sunday of the month. We have over 40 stalls selling crafts and hand made products, children workshops, free parents’ classes, face painting & kids play corner, designated buggy area, great food, cakes & coffee!

Find details on those Facebook page too: FB page: https://www.facebook.com/familymarketdublin

  

  
 

Christmas Traditions.. Old and New 

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We love Christmas in this house.. From present buying to festive film watching to catching up with friends and family.

Since having Josh we have certainly adopted a few new fun traditions but some have remained too. This is what the run up to Christmas looks like in our house and some of the things we love to do!

Early December:

I try and get the house decorated before the tree goes up, taking the multitude of bags out of the shed and sorting through the wreaths, balls and wrapping paper!

  
Our tree goes up usually the first weekend and this year we got it from Glencullen Christmas Tree Farm and it’s definitely been the freshest yet.

With Josh now, Santa is thrown into the mix-this year we visited Rathwood and Airfield, both lovely in their own way. Santa letters are written and Josh got a real kick out of posting it this year-we got a response from An Post yesterday and he loved it! Such a lovely idea! 

  

The National Craft Fair is a day out I really enjoy with my mum where we pick up some gifts, some foody bits and always squeeze in a lovely lunch! 

I try and get the mincemeat and chutney made early too before weekends get filled with being out and about.

  
Mid December:

At this stage we are mostly juggling nights out between us. School friends, work friends and mama friends, getting to catch up with everyone in festive spirit is a real treat.  Pressies are finalised and the last couple of years we have also visited the Live Crib in the Mansion House. This year we tied it in with going to see The Shelbourne Hotel’s festive display and it was a lovely way to spend the afternoon.

  
 

I love a good Christmas film so any down time we do get is usually spent cosied up watching one of the classics, Elf and Love Actually are still favs for me. 

Late December:

As Christmas approaches it is actually my husbands birthday so last year we started the tradition of going for afternoon tea. Last year was The Merrion and this year The Shelbourne, The Merrion slightly pipped it for me but I do love the atmosphere of The Shelbourne at this time of year. 

  

We usually try to have a group of pals over for a mince pie and some mulled wine which works well for friends with kids so we can exchange little gifts and all get together before the madness ensues!

The Week before the Big Day:

This week is about visiting family, doing the food shop, eating naughty things and putting the feet up having finished work! Nothing nicer than knowing you have almost 2 weeks ahead with family to enjoy. I try and get some prep done a few days ahead with dessert and canapés so Christmas Eve can be free enough to enjoy. 

  

Nighttime story books for Josh are all about Santa at this stage so excitement is reaching fever pitch!

Christmas Eve:

Our tradition here has changed somewhat in recent years. It has always started in town for what used to be a boozy lunch in The Merrion with close family friends. This is now a kid filled but fun and tasty brekkie in Avoca. The evening used to be going to the pub and seeing friends from afar but slowly it has changed and this year we will be coming back after town and whilst Josh naps final preparations will take place. Later we will visit one of the many festive lit up houses for charity and grab a pint at a cosy pub near by. 

Santas treats will be laid out-2 mince pies apparently 😉 Once Josh is tucked up, Santa will lay out his gifts and a take away will be ordered so no cooking is required. My mum and a family friend that comes to us for Christmas will join and we will tuck into some food and wine before trying to get an earlish night ahead of the excitement.

  

Christmas Day:

Again has changed a little in recent years but not a whole lot. I have adopted the task of hosting the last 3 years and I enjoy it a lot. For us it’s a day like it is for many others filled with family food and friendship. It’s mums for brekkie then ours for some canapés, the main event and some fun and games.

 2013-2014-2015 to come.. 

I saw this quote recently on The Journal and it warmed my heart. Something that rings very true right now. 

  

We have had a bit of a rough time of it in our little family of late, something I may be able to talk about in the coming weeks but for now I am going to enjoy Christmas for what it is-a time for reflection, family and gaining a few lbs and look to the new year for some hope and happiness for all. 

Weird Weeks 

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It’s safe to say that is has been a weird couple of weeks but I am writing this post feeling a lot better than I have and so I can put the last little  while behind me.

I returned from holidays feeling hopeful and focused but getting sick kind of scuppered that and then thrown into that a few changes in my life going on, very positive ones but changes all the same I let old anxieties creep in.

I felt old trigger points raise their nasty head, I had a constant knot in my tummy and the irrational side of my brain was in full force. I absolutely HATE feeling like that. It doesn’t happen often, in fact I can’t remember the last time but most of the time I think I’m am pretty ok, capable person but when this black cloud creeps in I absolutely am not!

Anyway I appreciate everyone has crappy times and for me I just had to ride through and thankfully I did. The light began this weekend, started off by a fab spa day with my mama pals in Rainforest Spa, Enniskerry. Next up was brunch with my girls, farm fun with Josh and then date night with my main man in Marco Pierre White. My mum took Josh on an overnight so plenty of rest and then a lovely family filled Sunday completed the road to re focus!

Sometimes it can be hard in life to realise and appreciate how lucky you are but always when I can reflect on feeling a bit low I realise it all the more. My life is my family, making them happy and secure is what is most important to me so with some priorities now on a list that is what I endeavour to continue to do.

  
This week has a giveaway on the blog so keep your eyes peeled!