Monday, 29 December 2014

Christmas Holiday Recap, Sort Of

A little intentional holiday blur for you all!

Hi all!

Sorry I haven't written really this month, but December was ridiculously busy for me. It bothered me that I hadn't written, or taken too many pictures (most were of clients!), but starting in 2015 I will be attempting a project 365. Wish me luck on that!

Anywho, between the kids holiday shows and whatnot, I feel like December just flew by. To be honest, up until Christmas, I was really down. I felt like I wasn't doing good enough for my kids, stepson, or my husband. I just couldn't shake it. I didn't even pick up my camera a lot, which was a surprise, because that's what usually gets me out of a funk. My running became mundane. The rock bottom was when I woke up on Christmas Eve, with a nasty message from Andrew's mother. Thats when I hit the rock bottom of my depression. Why couldn't I be good enough for everyone?

After talking to Laura, my co blogger here in the UK, I realized something. I am not only "good enough", but I am awesome. Yep, it sounds really self centered, but I have always thought I was a nothing, a loser, etc. But I am not. I am an AMAZING mother. I am always there for my kids, and they are so happy with life. I had stepped up when I was 21, almost 22, and became a caring full time stepmother officially when I was 24 and married Andrew's father. I am a loving wife. I am many things, but I am not a loser. And the second I realized that, all the sadness drifted away. I have been running so much longer, and my workout routine is great. I am in incredible shape. My kids adore me and their father. Even Andrew gets along with me and talks to me about everything. We are closer than ever. So what am I sad about? I have an amazing life. I ended up blocking a lot of people, and I feel freer than ever.

Doing this made my Christmas wonderful. We had a great Christmas Eve and Day. The kids didn't get a ton, but they never asked for more and loved everything they received. They were and are happy, just like their mommy. I took lots of pictures, enough to make up for my seriously lacking December. I only shared a few here, so as not to bog you down with everything. Who cares if some people don't like you, or attack you?  Most of the time those people want bring you down, or are jealous. Only the people that care for you and yourself matter. I wish I had lived like this sooner!

In the end, I look forward to 2015. 2014 I spent with a lot of depression, but I haven't been this free and happy in awhile. I hope you join me on this ride on my project 365 site, being announced in the new year.

Xmas Eve magic from 3 out of 4 of the mob

From the entire Lynch mob, we wish you a happy new year, and we will see you in the AWESOME 2015 year!!!

Monday, 22 December 2014

2014 Challenge almost complete and new 2015 Challenge!

So we are coming up to the end of 2014 and I have a smile on my face!

At the end of December 2013 I made a challenge for myself to take a photo a day of both boys and post it on Instagram with its own hash tag and I'm so excited to say that (at this moment in time ;-)) I have succeeded in the challenge! With only around a week to go til its completion!

For me it was a massive challenge, I'm so flakey when it comes to keeping up with things and it's not always been easy, there have been *many* days when I have scrambled for a photo with the boys asleep so not to fail my challenge!

But all in all its been a very positive experience and now I have my own hash tag to go back and see how the boys have grown over the year.. Bee especially as he has gone from 6 weeks old to 13 months old, almost 14 months! It was a great year to do this challenge with the most growth!

I have decided to do a different goal for 2015 though and it won't be on Instagram either - I plan to do a weekly round up page - so 52 pages which can incorporate  the best bits of each week and can have text etc. I will be printing them out to make a book at the end of 2015. I feel that this is a better way of capturing life as  as fabulous as 2014's photo a day was it didn't capture what was actually going on, just the way the boys were changing.

So there it is, 2015's photo challenge! Wish me luck!

Friday, 12 December 2014

The Nut Job - Review

I was quite excited to be offered the opportunity to watch a new film ahead of the DVD release, and not knowing much about it before hand definitely increased the anticipation!
We were invited to watch The Nut Job as part of a timed screening throughout the UK on Sunday 6th December ahead of its release on the 7th.

I had a brief look at the details on IMDB before we were to watch, and immediately noticed the wide range of vocal talents on board. I must confess to being a particular fan of Will Arnett (of Arrested Development and Lego Batman fame) but was surprised to see names like Brendan Fraser and Liam Neeson on the listing too, I wouldn’t have thought this would be their domain but nevertheless, as fans of theirs too I was intrigued to see how it would work out.

The Nut Job pretty much dives straight in to the action, we meet Surly the Squirrel (Arnett) as he plans his daring attempt on a nut cart with his buddy, Buddy. It turns out that the nut cart is actually a front for a local mafia operation in the process of casing a bank ready to rob it. I would have imagined that this might go over the heads of the target audience i.e. younger children, but I suppose it is there to offer adults something to latch on to as well, certainly I found myself a little more interested in this secondary plot than the main action.

In terms of the main story, it was fairly standard fare, the classic tropes of outcast makes hero and so-called hero not being such were there, as well as the do-good leader having a sinister ulterior motive. Nothing particularly original in terms of the characters, but what I quite enjoyed was that we were treated in effect to a double heist; the Mafia taking the gold, and the wildlife taking the nuts. There are even a few twists, predictable as they may be. I myself didn’t really find much amusement in the tale, apart from the odd standout moment (the mafia gang’s dog was easily my favourite character) but my four year old loved it.

He often struggles when watching films, we are trying to ‘train’ him to sit through one so we know he is ready for a trip to the cinema, and for the most part The Nut Job held his attention nicely. He enjoyed the madcap comedy of errors that was Surly’s increasingly daring attempts at stealing nuts, and he particularly enjoyed the dog too. It was very nice to see him enjoying a film, even if perhaps he couldn’t quite grasp what the characters were actually doing.

Overall, The Nut Job joins a long list of family animated films, I wouldn’t say that it particularly stood out as spectacular, but for a zany heist-within-a-heist that all the family can enjoy, it can’t be beaten.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Cosatto Giggle - Travel System Review!

Oh gosh, let me start by the sheer awesomeness which is the Pixelate pattern, I LOVE it! The fresh bold in your face colourful design is amazing and is a proper head turner as I walk Bee down the street - it attracts comments and looks and I quite simply just love it!

We have been testing out the Giggle Travel System for quite a few weeks now and it's been with us out and about enough to tell you our thoughts!

First off its a beautiful designed pram with a huge hood which is great for shielding either the sun or wind out of baby's face - I love the fact that it has a variant of the design on the underside which makes it look funky!

It has a sturdy lap bar which is easy to remove and can be put through the cosy toes and we also thread toys on there to keep Bee entertained You can either take the bar fully off or release it one side whilst you take your little one out.

The harness straps come off easily for washing so its nice and convenient for general baby ickyness! though the crotch strap does come off a little too easy too and you do end up threading them back on alot.

The seat unit can recline in 4 different positions and is great for nap times as there is ample space inside with the generous hood. I found the buttons to recline a little stiff at first but I struggle with my Hypermobility so that could just be me!

The Giggle has a great foot rest which looks very comfortable with lots of room!

The shopping basket is huge and is one thing I really look for in a Pram- it ticks all the boxes for us and holds our changing back plus shopping.

The wheels are easy to push and the front is lockable for different terrains - where we live I tend to keep it on swivel mode as its easier.

The Giggle is very easy to push and feels lightweight and not bulky. I love that it has different positions for the handles, especially as my husband is a giant (6'3) and he finds a lot of other brand buggies hard to push with low bars.

I love that you can fold the Giggle down with the seat attached, which is something that's rare with other travel systems - although you need to make sure the seat unit is forward facing to do this.

I have relatively small boot to my car and i find the Giggle fits in perfect, it doesn't take up a huge amount of space and we can fit shopping bags around it which is handy.

Here Bee is forward facing sitting right up - he is a large 12 month old here (in 18-24 month clothes!) so you can see how comfortable looking it is.

I personally would recommend the Giggle Travel System, I wish I had had it when Bee was teeny so I could have used the carry cot too as it's all beautiful!

Here are some specs from the COSATTO website

Weight and Size:
Weight: Chassis: 6.5kg Seat: 4kg Carrycot: 4.9kg
Assembled Size: Chassis L:97cm W:62.5cm H:87cm 
Other Information:

Folded Size: L: 97cm W: 62.5cm H: 25cm
Handle Height: 71 – 104.5cm
• Easily transforms to be used with carrycot, pushchair seat or Hold group 0+ car seat (sold separately)
• All round suspension
• Suitable from birth carrycot
• Pushchair seat with in and out facing option
• Compact, easy fold
• Lightweight aluminium chassis
• Quick-release removable wheels
• Lockable swivel front wheels
• Adjustable handle height
• UPF 50+ sunshade protection
• 4 position recline
• Lockable swivel front wheels
• Removable bumper bar with cover
• Spacious storage basket
• Carrycot includes carry handle and removable washable liner
• Carrycot suitable for occasional overnight sleeping
• Toy loops in hood
• Conforms to EN1888:2012 & BS 1466:2004 + A1:2007 (carrycot only)

Check out the Giggle Video HERE 

We were sent the Giggle in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Interview With A 3 Year Old

On November 20th, Grayson turned 3, and it broke my heart, just a smidge. My last baby is growing up!!! However, I have been waiting for him to get a bit older, so I could try this little interview project. I plan on asking these questions every year, to see how he grows and how his answers change.

My little "threenager"

So here it is, an interview with Grayson, age 3 edition (in his own words):

1) What is your favorite color? "Blue!"

2) What is your favorite toy? "Horsey"

3) What is your favorite thing to eat? "Crackers"

4) What is your favorite TV show? "Team umizoomi!" (I kind of wish it wasn't) 

5) What is your favorite outfit to wear? " I say nothing" (wonder if he just wants to stay mute on    
                                                                                              this or if he legit means nothing)
6) Where do we live? "A house"

7) What are your favorite animals? "Tigers and giraffes!" (he's never said that before...)

8) What does Mommy do for work? "Looks at this" and points at phone. (Ouch)

9) What does Daddy do for work? "Get TV's" (he doesn't steal. He's in loss prevention)

10) What is your favorite book? "When Cassie reads to me" 

11) What is your favorite thing to do outside? "Ride bikes" (he does ride a mean trike)

12) Who is your best friend? "Cassie" (awww he loves his sister)

13) What do you want to be when you grow up?  "To be as high as Daddy" (Whoa. I swear he 
                                                                                                                              means tall)
14) What is your favorite game to play? "DS"

15) What do you like to take to bed with you? "Horse and chewys" (his old swaddles)

16) What's your favorite thing to do with Mommy? "Eat snacks" (double ouch)

17) What's your favorite thing to do with Daddy? "Help Daddy work"

18) What's your favorite treat? "Crackers" (obviously)

19) What is your favorite movie? "Planes"

20) If you could go anywhere, where would you go? "The movies" (he's never been yet)

21) What makes you happy? "Saying cheese!" (trained him well)

22) What makes you sad?  "Andrew" (guess big bro is tough on him)

23) What makes you scared? "Sydney in bed" (what??)

24) What is your favorite sport? "Basketball"

25) What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? "I can't eat ice cream" (allergic. Trying to get him to
                                                                                                                    to eat soy ice cream)

And there you have it! Some pretty funny and surprising answers. I am going to try and do this with the other kids when its their birthdays too! For now I am going to see what I can do about this whole sibling situation.