97 weeks today | Siblings {November} | 20 months old

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Well… we are positively racing towards the end of the year; on the home straight, if you will. Christmas is just around the corner and funnily enough this months ‘Siblings’ sees my two boys receive their first Christmas present. A bit … Continue reading

95 weeks and 1 day | Mixed Blessings {My Word of the Week}

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On my Twitter feed today, one of the ladies I follow had posted about her Linky named ‘Word Of The Week‘. Our lovely English language is a real hobby for me — I LOVE words! I love grammar, the provenance and … Continue reading

94 weeks and 3 days | Back to the future

This time last week were were all in my mum and dad’s caravan enjoying the last morning of our mini-holiday to North Wales.

It was raining and the Twinkles had just had breakfast.

Rather than watch TV, we decided to do some colouring. I’d bought some wax crayons and paper the day before so this was going to be a ‘first’ for my two little men.

The boys were fascinated by the coloured marks that the crayons left on the paper and there was much concentration as they completed their masterpieces. All in all, for the cost of a couple of quid, it was a lovely activity for them to do on a drizzly morning.

It was only after we got home and I went though the pics my mum had taken, that it struck me how old fashioned these images look.

Granted, the caravan decor is straight out of the 1980s; the upholstery fabric would probably have been sold on ‘Are You Being Served’. Plus the lighting is off and has that yellow tinge synonymous with old pictures.

But mostly, these images look old fashioned to me because my parents have got similar snaps from my childhood!

My little sister and I spent many family holidays in various static caravans in Wales. There’s almost 10 years between my sister and me but we always managed to find things to do to bridge the age-gap and entertain ourselves. Our parent’s have got almost identical photographs of us, sitting colouring at the table or sprawled out on the floor — felt-tips and crayons strewn about — often with a look of concentration, similar to the one my babies are wearing on these photos, on our faces.

And actually, that’s a lovely thing. Especially as I don’t see that same air of attentiveness and enjoyment when the children watch TV — it’s more a vacant, blank expression.

Let’s face it, these days kids are so bombarded with ‘all singing, all dancing’ toys, back-to-back TV programmes, video games, remote control gadgets, ipads, ipods and all manner of other techno-fayre that the simple things are often overlooked.

My childhood was pretty idyllic. I grew up in a village — my friends and I would play Sindys, build dens, play on bikes or rollerboots, pretend to be fairies and spend hours colouring and painting when the weather was grey.

It was simple but now, in my forties and can say it was memorable.

If I can give my boys a similar kind of upbringing — made of such happy memories — then I will have succeeded as a parent.

It’s so easy to stick our kids in front of the TV (or other device) these days - especially when we need to get on with things. God knows, I’m as guilty of it as the next person: Peppa Pig when I need to sort the washing - Waybuloo when I’m getting the tea on. And the odd TV programme is no bad thing, after all. A little bit of TV feeds the imagination… but back-to-back TV does not.

As a child of the 70s, I grew up on a diet of Playschool, Bod, Bagpuss and Fingerbobs. But there was no dedicated TV channel back then. Childrens’ TV programmes happened a couple of times during the day, then — when I was a little older — an hour after school.

So from here-on-in I’m going back to the future.

That doesn’t mean I’m going veto technology and pretend that the last 30 years of innovation haven’t happened. But I am going to try and be mindful of the things that made my childhood so memorable and ensure that my children have a good balance of simple ‘old-fashioned’ activities together with the things that kids enjoy today.

After all, as my mum always used to tell me… too much TV will give you square eyes.

And that’s not a good look for anyone ;)

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94 weeks and 1 day | Me and Mine {October}

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This month’s Me and Mine photographs see us in another country no less! Seeing as we didn’t manage to have a proper holiday — of longer than 4 days — again this year, we decided to round the summer off with a … Continue reading

91 weeks and 4 days | 19 months old | Siblings {October}

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Nineteen months old today. Blimey — we are creeping ever more swiftly towards their second birthday. Before I know it, they’ll be starting school, university, getting engaged, planning a wedding… OHMYGOD MAKE IT STOP!!!!!!! Arrrrgh!! *life flashing before one’s eyes* … Continue reading

80 weeks and 5 days | Me and Mine {September}

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September has been a little quieter than other months of late. Still busy — friends coming and going, people to see, things to do — but we’ve also had a couple of weekends at home, which has been utterly gorgeous … Continue reading

79 weeks and 6 days | To a 40 something ‘new mum’…

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I read an article the day before yesterday. It was one of those sponsored link things on Facebook — ‘you might find this interesting’, kind of thing — and I did find it interesting. And immensely irritating. It was a … Continue reading

78 weeks and 2 days | Happy 18 month birthday Twinkles! | Siblings {September}

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Even though it’s not, today feels like a birthday day! It’s exactly 18 months since those two perfect packages of gorgeousness rocketed into our lives!! EIGHTEEN MONTHS!! A year and a half!! I can’t believe it. A sneaky time thief … Continue reading