Thursday, 4 February 2016

NEW HOME. FRESH START. & TWINNING


Is that a Santa hat you spy?

Oh yes it is, but don't worry, we don't have a Christmas obsessed Caleb, although he does keep picking his Christmas books to read each night for bed ;). Sorry, kid, it's a once a year thing I'm afraid.

These pictures were in fact taken in December, and of course I'm late sharing. It was our first weekend in our new home and we decided to take a break from all the boxes to get some fresh air and stretch our legs.

I remember it being so cold that afternoon but we all walked around with big giddy smiles on our faces. It had been exactly a year since we first thought about putting our old place on the market, and now here we were, walking around our new neighbourhood, complete with our own mini Santa ;)


Ain't she pretty? We pass this canal every day to get to Caleb's nursery and the sight does not get old.

Talking of nursery, Caleb has fitted in seamlessly which we couldn't be more thrilled about. We were a little worried about all the change that had happened in the last year that we felt a change of nursery might be one change too much. Turns out I think it's me who worries about change more so than my boys.


You see I like to think I'm good with change and that I just roll with the punches but I find the older I get the less so this is true. Therefore I couldn't be happier to say we are loving our new area!

I worried moving a little further out from the city would be quite isolating, but quite the opposite. For one, every person you pass pretty much says hello, which suits my Liverpudlian personality down to a tee. Then there was Caleb starting nursery, which in all intents and purposes feels like you the parent is starting school all over again.

Cue new mum at nursery who knows no one. Talk about unearthing that nervous young girl in me. I class myself as a fairly outgoing person, but with a tough year last year and just feeling a little out of sorts has made me shrink back in myself a little. Lucky for me I've met some lovely, lovely people. 

I've been struck of late just how truly lovely people are, whether we've known them for years or just a short amount of time. The support that has been felt after losing my grandad has been amazing. There isn't a thank you big enough really. 


In other news, Archie likes to walk everywhere now! Until well, he doesn't want to walk and then he'd prefer mama's arms over his pram.


My Sorel boots have been a lifesaver this winter, I had them in mind for all the snow I hoped we would get, no such luck, they've instead kept my feet warm and dry from all this sodding rain. Oh and it's meant I could twin with my boys, do you think they'll find this cool still when they're 25?! ;) 


As you can see Daddy is quite partial to a bit of twinning too.


For those that are interested in outfit details, I'm afraid there's a lot of last season rocking going on, not to mention Caleb hand me downs to Archie ;)

My boots c/o Cloggs are these Sorel boots, and they're now on sale with an extra 10% off too!

The boys duck boots can be found here, and also on sale.

My poncho is a good old Tesco number, don't you just love an outfit purchase mid food shop ;). Similar can be found here. My go to waterproof trousers (thank you, pleather!) are H&M, and my hat is Zara last season but you can find similar here.

Mikey's trusty Northface jacket gets pulled out every year, and I've been known to steal it for the nursery run ;)

Thursday, 21 January 2016

FAMILY. THIS IS FOR YOU, GRANDAD.

Family.

Now there is a word to start my first post off for 2016.

It's the most important word there is after all.

It's what life is really all about.

A life to love, to experience, to adventure, yes; but at the end of the day it's who we let into our hearts that truly count. Whether the people surrounding us (physically and figuratively) are blood relatives or friends, to me they all come under the same word. Family.

My grandad taught me that. My amazing and incredible grandad who passed away in his home, surrounded by the love of his family on the 30th December 2015.

I've no words to describe my level of heartbreak, only that it is a small price to pay, however painful, for everything he gave me. He taught me how important life is, especially in his last year. He left us with a family bound by his love and our love for him. That was his gift to us, a gift that cannot be taken away.

I could write forever about my grandad, but what I want to do is instead show you a video. A glimpse into my grandad and his beautiful, simple legacy, family.

The video captures a weekend of all our family together celebrating my grandad's 80th birthday. A birthday we had been warned by doctors he might not make. He did, and we weren't surprised. My grandad wasn't going to give up this life easily. He was a fighter.

I'm so happy that my grandad, himself, got to see this video. His first response was, people need to see this. I don't think he was talking about yourselves in that moment, per say, but I knew what he meant. He was so proud of his family and everything he had achieved, I think that's what he wanted people to know. To gift people with the simple knowledge which is to love and cherish those dear to you. Do that, and you can't go wrong. 

So this blog is for you, grandad. My most favourite reader of all. A man who read every post I ever wrote and would complain when I didn't update ;).

I love you more than words can say, and I will keep writing for you.


FAMILY from Claire Stewart on Vimeo.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

HONG KONG AND MY FIRST VLOG


If you follow us on Instagram you will have seen we visited Hong Kong recently, without the kids!!

Yep, you read that right.

No. Kids.

It feels crazy to me now that we had an entire week away from the boys and got to have this experience. It was a long awaited trip to visit my dad, and thanks to the best babysitter ever (Love you, mum!), we were able to really enjoy it as a two.

Oh and let me tell you as a two, wow, you really get to sightsee. You know, like really sightsee. No timing around naps, or strict eating schedules, or abandoning plans altogether because you ignored those two factors and it's now tantrums you're dealing with. Oh yes, been there and done that. Never ignore naps and food, unless you're crazy ;)

So this was a week of pure indulgence, the biggest indulgence being we only had ourselves to think about. Throw in the best tour guides ever, my dad and his wife, and this is a trip I will remember forever.

Thanks to being inspired by a fellow blogger, Sara (Me and Orla),  I've been delving into the world of creating short video clips. It first started because I wanted to capture my boys with their great grandparents, and since then I've been hooked. There's something I'm really drawn to about this medium of capturing memories. I love the rawness of it, no fancy editing, just moments in time collected together to act as one big memory.

Eeek so I give you my first vlog. I'm very much learning as I go so bare with me!

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

AUTUMN, A GOOD MOAN & AN UNINTENDED FASHION POST ;)


We're still here. Still in our rental. Life on a funny sort of pause, yet moving as fast paced as ever.

I nearly had a mini melt down on Sunday. Okay, kind of did.

Living in a temporary rental indeed has a shelf life when you have two little ones. Living out of boxes gets tired quickly and don't even get me started with the amount of times I've stubbed my toe or banged into something because, well, there is just stuff and boxes everywhere.

So looking to Mikey trying to laugh our current situation off, we decided to grab the boys, pack up the car and hit the great outdoors, and let me tell you, the perfect medicine for my little fed up soul.

Autumn, seriously, you have my heart. I'm like a child every year when it rolls around, the colours, the light, the joy on my boys faces as they collect sticks, leaves and other woodland treasures. Oh yep, you bet I'm the adult scouring the woods and parks for conker trees and then squealing in delight when I find one. I'm happy to report I've now passed that on to Caleb too.

We decided to head out to Archerfield Walled Garden, knowing that it wouldn't disappoint on a beautiful Autumn day, and that it didn't. It's the perfect place for kids AND adults. There's a play park just off from the cafe and then the grounds to roam. Just as the sun got low in the sky we set off on our walk. I still have to pinch myself a little when I see Archie strutting his stuff, he started walking not long after moving into our rental and the boy has not stopped since!


Can someone please explain to me when this boy of mine grew up overnight?!


Along the trail there were lots of little places to explore.


I just can't get enough of all the golden hues with splashes of orange everywhere.


I seriously won't be doing this with Archie for much longer. Ton. Weight.



He's loving my cuddles. Totes loving them, I tell you :P


The Wishing Tree, tie a ribbon on a branch, close your eyes and make a wish. I made a wish for a special someone.


My big boy!!!!


Does the hat look familiar?! Remember a certain wee boy who was totally obsessed with it and wore it all day, every day for what felt like FOREVER. Ha!


Mama uniform. All day. Every day.



I'm crazy about my three guys, well they drive me crazy, so that's the same thing, right?! ;)


There really is nothing quite like fresh air to shake away day to day stresses. We left Archerfield feeling a whole lot happier with perspective gained. Not long now until our big move to our new home. Three weeks and counting!!!! Eeeek!!


For those that also may be interested, I've been receiving emails and messages asking where particular items of clothing we wear are from, I've never addressed it here as I've never seen this as, 'a fashion blog', per say. I am however a girl who loves her clothes, and since becoming a mother it's been important for me to keep wearing what I love but to also make sure it's functional and fits in with running after two boys all day long.

Where I can I will link to what we are wearing and I hope this helps for those that are interested!

You can find my cardigan here, and I'm forever on the quest for the perfect white tee and this COS number is pretty damn close. My jeans can be found here, and my boots here. My current favourite Mac lipstick is Lady Danger.

Caleb is wearing a Zara tee, and his boots can be found here. His long loved hat is from Gap a few years back, but we're also loving this one too.

Archie's jumper can be found here, his hat here, and his boots like Caleb's are from Clarks.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

TALKING THE TALK


Michael turned to me in the car the other day and said, 'Do you remember when we said we could never imagine the day we would just want Caleb to shut up and stop talking for five minutes?'

'Yes', I smiled. Oh yes I remember that well.

We both burst out laughing as Caleb's voice hollered from the backseat, 'Mama? Mama? Daddy? Daddy?' for the gazillionth time that day.

It's happened. A month off turning three and half years old and our little man has found his voice, and we literally can't shut him up.

He's full of questions, his new found speech has awoken his curiosity to the world, wanting to know the name of anything and everything, and the slightest sounds sets off his favourite question, 'What's that noise?!'.

I can't tell you how happy it makes me to see him chatting away. We are now getting a proper insight into our loving, kind and funny boy and what's best is so is everyone else. If you asked me what has been one of the hardest things about Caleb's speech delay I would definitely say the barrier it's created to the outside world, and watching the amazing boy I knew inside being dominated mostly by frustration, temper and tears on the outside. Watching him shed that barrier and form proper relationships outwith our family makes me proud beyond measure, and so happy for him.

So keep talking my boy. Give us all your questions. You've got our full attention. If you can however adjust your volume button though it would be much appreciated ;)


Here are some of our favourite Caleb chats recently...


'Can I go to the moon? Please, mama. pleeeeeeease.'

Unable to hold his hand as I was carrying bags and pushing Archie in the pram. 'It's okay, mama. You gotta go the doctor, alright.'

We've weaned him off his much loved cap for when he's at nursery so every day when we leave he tells his cap, 'Don't worry, hat. I've got to go to nursery, hat. I'll see you soon. Byeeeeeeeeeee.'

'Mama, ooooouch sore belly, mama.'  Me - 'Are you hungry, Caleb?'. Caleb - 'Yes, mama'

'See you tomorrow toys. I gotta go home.' As we leave the Tesco toy aisle when we're doing our food shop. This is as much adorable as it is a relief. Ha!


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