Thursday, 24 December 2015

'Twas the Night Before Christmas

...Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse... Except for the sound of our two right before bedtime having a full on fist fight over a mince pie. Dear love wee Jack. He was lovingly and carefully setting out a couple of mincers for Santa, and some carrots for the reindeers when Noah bursts in and demands the mince pies for consumption right there and then. Que Jack's wails of "Those are for Santaaaaaaaaa!" Why didn't I stop him? I tried. But there's no stopping Noah really. He is so very naughty sometimes (a lot) I don't think Santa will bring him anything but a lump of coal tonight.

"No no NO Noah! That's for Santa!!!!"

"Here, I've taken a nibble, but you can have the rest, Santy"

Don't fret Santa! We put Noah to bed and Jack and I replaced the mince pies with 3 Oreo cookies. Honestly though, the dog ate those (leave them on the mantle and you've just got to expect that) but I'll re-replace them with something else.

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight! x 

1. Cat in a Christmas Tree
2. Birthday bowling! Jack turned 5!
3. Santa photo 2015
4. Bathtime
5. Christmas eve!
6. My little Joseph in the Nativity
7. Snow!
8. The most amazing sunset 

Sunday, 13 December 2015

Forget December

So it rained all of Saturday morning, but as soon as it let up we took ourselves off on a chilly winter walk in our local forest. What a sight the boys are when they hold hands. Noah is so delighted when he gets some of his big brothers attention. It warmed the cockles of my heart watching them totter around, hands all a-swingin'.

Jack is dreaming of a white Christmas. As long as snow doesn't scarper plans to get places in the car, I'm down with that. Lots of Northern Ireland seen snow this weekend. Not us. We just had rain. Dear love the wee pet, he keeps asking me "how many days until my birfday?" and "now how many days 'til Christmas, Mummy?" and "then it will snow?" 

Our lovely friends from Lala & Bea sent Jack and Noah some awesome early Christmas gifts. Look at Noah in his very festive pudding hat!!!! What a gorgeous Christmassy little hat it is. 'Tis the season! They're also wearing the new range of loungewear. Caroline, one half of Lala & Bea explained the thinking behind the idea of the new range to me - 

"The idea behind the loungewear is that it's a unisex range, suitable for indoor and outdoor use. I designed it because my son would always want to put his PJs on (because they are comfy) and always wanted to wear them out of the house too. I wanted to create something that would be ok to wear outside and in and it wouldn't be obvious that he was wearing PJs, hence the loungewear name. They are made from soft organic cotton and the whole process from knitting the fabric to printing and making is all done in the UK. Even the labels are produced here."

Comfy these outfits certainly were! Although I've put it all together for this shoot, the tops and trou can be bought and teamed separately. It didn't take long for Noah to have a couple of falls and get his completely piggin'. They're spinning around in the washing machine as we speak.

Another wonderful great British brand is Hatley. Just over 20 years old, the iconic brand was born after talented painter Alice Oldland needed a venue to showcase her work. Her art sold out quickly, and her husband had the idea to turn her paintings into aprons. These too sold like hotcakes! All these years on Hatley is doing wonderful trade right across the world, specialising in kidswear. 

They kindly sent Jack one of their puffer coats from the new range. I am most impressed that this coat can withstand temperatures of -15 degrees. I think my husband wants me to stop saying this fact out loud when I put the coat on Jack. It's just the Mum in me gets a sense of satisfaction knowing how toasty he is when he's wearing this! Another great feature is that it's reversible. Polar bears on one side, bright orange on the other. I love that! Jack has great fun deciding which side to wear it. He says his fave side is the orange, but then he asks to turn it inside-out again to display the bears. It's safe to say he likes it either way.

This week is a busy one. I'm running out of space on those little boxes on the calendar. Jack's nativity play is this week. He was originally Joseph, but he informs me he has been demoted to a sheep. Where did it all go wrong? Well, whatever you do, do it well, I tell him. We have some Christmas parties and meet ups too. I'm hoping school will wind down the homework this last week before term ends. 

It hits half four and it's flipping' pitch dark now. It's ridiculous. Who can I complain to? The shortest day of the year is approaching (Jack's birthday actually!) and I think I read somewhere the sun starts to set around 12.30. Well I'm dreaming of the summer, but for now I'll just hold on to the thought of brighter mornings and longer days. 

Thank you so much to Hatley, my good chum Dani, and my girls, Caroline and Katie of Lala&Bea. I love working with them all.

Monday, 7 December 2015

Stood a Lowly Cattle Shed

Here's December! Lots going on this month! If you know me, you're probably sick of hearing me belly ache about this weather. I hate hate hate it. I hate being cold. I hate getting wet. I mostly hate the lack of daylight, so much so I have invested in a SAD lamp to try and alleviate the bad mood I get into every winter. Yes. I'm sure I have SAD. I live for the summer. So I'm definitely a Christmas scrooge.

Anyway, trying to see the positives, there are lots of lovely December parties to look forward to, I'm looking forward to having my sister home from London for a couple of weeks. She'll be coming with us to take the kids to see Santa, and celebrate Jack's 5th birthday! (5! FIVE!) Jack is a little Joseph in his first nativity play this year, so we're excited about that too. 

There isn't much to do when it's bucketing outside (here I go again) so we've been in Granda Bill's cattle shed the past couple of weekends. Just bumming around. Probably getting in his way. Sure, what else is there to do on a Sunday afternoon? It gets us out of the house. Noah thinks cows are just about the funniest thing that has ever existed. 

Check out this portrait of Mammy and Daddy that Jack shot... not the one above, funny guy, see below! Pretty good, right? He's gonna be a wee photographer! 

Last Christmas I bought a place on a screen printing course for my arty husband. He only got round to enrolling last month. The course has finished now, but I'm in love with some of his screen prints, including these prints of Jack and Noah. Aren't they sensational? He's such a talent. These are proudly hanging in my hall. Those big smiles get me through these short dark days!

Here's what we've been getting up to:

1. Wedding guests- wee matching suits!
2. Ho ho woof
3. Crown
4. Bay trees
5. Santa! I know him!
6. Nana and Noah
7. Jack and the beautiful bride
8. Homework