When the colder months first came around I started looking out for presents for my boys; with the twins turning one right after Christmas I wanted to find something different. I knew we would have so many toys from Christmas so I really needed to find something else, a gift that would be perfect for a first birthday. Someone recommended My Baby Patchwork to me on twitter and the more I saw the more I fell in love with the handmade patchwork baby blanket’s. My Baby Patchwork is the hard work of mum, Hayley, and she creates the most beautiful quilted blankets from old baby clothes.
I found it really hard to part with baby clothes after the twins; I had kept all of Lucas’ knowing we would be having another but there was really no need to hold onto them after the twins had outgrown them. As I sent out a tweet saying how sad it was to be parting with the tiny sleep suits I got a reply saying why don’t I get them made into a blanket? I can’t remember who it was who tagged in My Baby Patchwork but I am forever grateful. I got in touch with Hayley through Facebook and decided on two medium blankets for my boys with a blue and a green border. I had a sort through the many clothes and picked out the ones that meant the most, that were particularly special and any that had nice embroidery or patterns. I sent them all off to Hayley and she lovingly made our blankets, complete with the boys initial and a cosy, fleecy underside.
I must admit these gifts were bought more for me initally but Boo and Bear love them too! They came all carefully wrapped up with a ribbon so I didn’t let them out until the morning on their birthday. As soon as we lay them out they were on them, grinning away and rolling around. They just love them and we have them out most days; their older brother occasionally burrows under one on the sofa so it looks like I’ll have to get another!
They really are a fantastic quality, such great value for money when you think of the work that goes into them. You can choose any fabric for the border and can customise them with names and dates if you wish. They are truly one of a kind and so carefully crafted I would’t hesitate to recommend them. I love that I can look at the blankets and picture the little outfits, where they came from and when they wore them; such a perfect keepsake and a great gift if you want to give something different.
Disclosure – I paid for these blankets in full but I love them so much I wanted to share them. I have received no compensation for this post!
January for us is all about days like this; staying in the house, keeping warm, snuggling blankets and wrestling with brothers!
Our week has been quite a busy one, lots of visitors, swimming lessons and cold school runs. The twins have started to climb, meaning I can hardly leave the room and Boo just wanted to hold hands to practice his walking. I don’t feel like I’ve sat down all week. I took them all to visit my Nana at the weekend; we completely took over her house. It’s amazing how quickly they can fill a room and of course they were trying to climb everything in sight, including her glass television cabinet!
This photo was taken early last week, Lucas had a couple of days off school as he was under the weather again. We were in our pyjamas longer than was strictly necessary and I spread some blankets out to keep us cosy. Of course the boys all start rolling and wrestling on them which by the looks of it is just about the most fun ever.
Like any busy parent, my days often pass in a blur. Busying around getting everyone ready in the morning, breakfast followed by lunch then out to take Lucas to pre-school; our mornings are pretty hectic. I don’t know where the time goes and we are often rushing around to get out on time. The walk to school gives me a chance to talk to Lucas and then I get in from the school run and am able to spend an afternoon with the twins. It is a couple of hours just me and them and most of the time it is a lovely part of my day. They usually nap on the school run now so they are often awake all afternoon. For some reason the dynamic shifts when it is just the two of them; they play so much nicer, there are less squabbles and it all seems a touch calmer when they don’t have their big brother to chase after.
When I come in I will have my lunch and a cup of tea and more often than not I can sit back and watch them both; they will happily sit and play either together, or at least close to each other! As soon as I get down on the floor they both climb all over me but will settle down again and we can spend some time playing blocks, or cars, looking at books or singing. As they get more adventurous the mornings are becoming more and more manic so I look forward to these afternoons when we can slow the pace down. Don’t get me wrong, some afternoons are just as crazy as the mornings but on the whole it is the quieter part of our day.
I love that I have the time to watch them interact with each other, to see them giggle as they chase one another around and catch the little moments when they learn something new and the other one immediately copies. This last year has passed so quickly and so many milestones seem to have rushed by us that sometimes it is nice to just step back and enjoy being with them. They aren’t doing anything remarkable but at the same time I wouldn’t want to miss it. I see more and more of their personalities shining through in the afternoons when it is just us three. These quiet moments, just watching them as they do something simple like stack wooden blocks, never fail to make me happy.
I’m loving doing My Captured Moment because it makes me have a look back though my photos and I find all sorts that I’ve forgotten about or haven’t published on the blog. It is so easy for us to take digital photos that we end up with so, so many that we don’t do anything with. I can’t even remember the last time I got some prints!
This one of the boys was taken this summer, they were about five months old and we’d all had a picnic in the garden. They loved rolling on the picnic rug afterwards, looking up at the clouds and I’d snapped a few photos at the time. It is so cold this time of year it’s nice to think of those warm days when we could spend the whole day in the garden and eat outside. I’m looking forward to this summer and seeing the twins properly exploring outside with their older brother.
Linking up with the lovely My Captured Moment with Running In Lavender, please pop by and show her some love.
You can see my first, A Little Bit Lately post here to find out more about it. These have been inspired by Sometimes Sweet’s Currently posts so check her out if you like it! Also please stop by But Why Mummy Why who has a wonderful ‘Love The Little Things’ linky.
I’ve started my reading challenge, A Year In Books for 2015 and have already read two books before the end of January, hooray!! I’ll write more about them at the end of the month but I read The Observations and The Miniaturist. I’ve been trying to make more time before I go to sleep to read a few chapters. I often get to bed and can easily spend half an hour on my phone; I’m sure it is much better for my mind to read instead so that is what I’ve been making an effort to do. Simple but effective!
We FINALLY finished Breaking Bad, I can’t believe we made it to the end without any spoilers! It was brilliant and left a void so asking around on twitter we decided on Peaky Blinders which I am just loving! We are about the start the second series and I just can’t get enough, it is beautifully filmed and well acted with a great soundtrack; I would highly recommend it. Also very pleased new series of Brooklyn 99 is out, never fails to make me laugh.
My husband bought me the new Foo Fighters album for Christmas so that has been going on a loop. It is a great album, I’ve really loved their last few after a spell when I could take it or leave it. It feels like they are just really enjoying making music again. Now I need to find the time to watch the Sonic Highways documentary.
I’ve been in a bit of a grump this month so I’m trying to think what I’ve been loving the most and it has to be Pinterest. I’ve always liked it but it has been the perfect bit of escapism for me at such a dismal point of the year. I’m pinning ideas to decorate our living room which I hope to do this year, new haircuts as I’m thinking of having a big chop in Febraury (eek!), there is always cake and inspiring quotes, lots of ideas for the boys bedrooms and a whole load of other things to make me smile. I’m so addicted at the moment, what do you love to pin? I’ve even got my husband using it; it is a big deal for him to accept a new form of social media, even if he only uses it to pin pictures of beards and pocket watches!
Spring…please hurry up! January has got to be the worst month and every year I just seem to dislike it more and more. I can’t motivate myself, I feel really tired, I’m fed up of being stuck in because it’s too cold for the children; I like to think I’m quite positive most of the time but this has definitely been a month for moping! I have decided I need to buy myself some spring flowers like tulips to cheer myself and remind myself spring will soon be here!
A few of my Instagram snaps from this month.
This weekend Lucas had a birthday party to attend, he went and had a fantastic time, danced, ate cake and came home as a tiger! It was a party for a child at pre-school and I always think it’s quite sweet to watch them all together at this age knowing that most of them will be going through school for at least the next seven years.
It’s lovely to sit back and see him interact, to watch the children entertain each other by just running round a hall singing ‘Let It Go’, showing off their party clothes and admiring each other’s face paint. I love seeing the Lucas I don’t see each afternoon, the Lucas at pre-school; he spots his friends and immediately goes off to play with them and they already have set games or chatter. A whole little part or his world that he has to himself without Mummy. So much innocence and fun!
When you have a new baby there are so many things out there that you need to buy for them, and there are also a whole lot of things that you buy but rarely use! As the twins were my second babies I really whittled down the new baby purchases to what I actually NEEDED rather than getting sucked into buying just because I thought I should have it. We didn’t have the money to spare this time round so I was very thrifty when it came to buying for our twins. Aside from the obvious (car seat and somewhere to sleep) these are my best baby essentials for twins. These are the baby products I actually could not have done without and if you really only want to get the essentials I don’t think you need much more than these for the first 4-6 months!
1. Double Buggy – Baby Jogger City Mini Twin Pushchair Any double pushcahir will do really and it’s important to pick one that suits your lifestyle but this is the one we went for. I got a pre-loved bargain and it has been perfect, we could use it from birth and it will see them right through. It fits in our car and folds up relativity neatly so it doesn’t take over the house.
2. Large Play Mat – Tiny Love Supermat This was a great buy for our boys. We had a little one which lasted all of one week until we realised we really needed a jumbo one! It was constantly down for the first few months but it meant I always had somewhere to pop them, if they were sick on it it just went in the washing machine and as they got older it kept them entertained.
3. Bath Support – Mothercare Ergonomic Bath Support I only bought these late on in pregnancy after seeing them at a twin antenatal class and they are absolutely amazing! Our twins could rest safely in them from about two weeks old so we could put them both in the big bath together and if needed it meant I could bath them on my own. So much easier and leaves your hands free to wash them properly.
4. Muslin Cloths – F&F Muslin Squares Now I had a lot of these before our twins arrived but once they were born I bought more…and more…and more. You can never have enough! I used them to pop under their heads when they were sleeping so you didn’t have to change the whole bedding if they were sick. They were changing mats, blankets, swaddles, aswell as being used for a burping cloth. You will go through a lot with twins!
5. Sleeping Bag – Grobag These are just fantastic; if your twins are little sometimes it is difficult to find them small enough but ours went into them from about one week old. As long as they have poppers under the arms and you make sure they can’t wriggle down in them they are safe from any age. If they are sleeping together you know they aren’t going to get caught up in each other’s blankets and you don’t keep having to check they are wrapped up warm.
6. Bouncer – Bright Starts Bouncer We had two bouncers and used them right from the start every single day! I only got cheap ones and they were fantastic; the boys were in them until they could escape themselves. I used them for feeding; a twin in each chair and I’d sit in the middle with the bottles. They would nap in them occasionally and when I started weaning they were fantastic. I could always just pop them in a bouncer and I knew they were safe if I wanted to get a few jobs done.
So there are my six best buys for twins, the newborn edition!
Also, if you are breastfeeding then a twin breastfeeding pillow would be invaluable and if you are bottle feeding I know twin mums swear by the Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep machine. Definitely worth considering!
For this weeks captured moment I thought I’d share an old one of Lucas. This was taken early September last year, before the start of pre-school. I really miss those days were we had the whole day to do as we please, now we have to fit into the school run routine so we don’t get to do as much out and about. I’d gone out for the morning with all three boys but the twins soon fell asleep and it was just me and Lucas, it felt like the old days and we chattered away the whole way round. When it was just me and Lucas we would go for a walk nearly every day, he is such a little adventurer he would always be happy to get some fresh air.
I think this might be my favourite recent photo of him. He does look a little serious as I was telling him about the squirrels burying their nuts for winter and this was his thoughtful expression. It was just a quick snap on my iPhone but the light was perfect and I just adore it.
Linking up with a lovely new linky My Captured Moment with Running In Lavender, please pop by and show her some love.
This week started a little differently to most other weeks. On a Monday we usually have a slow start, we don’t have to be out the house until 12pm so our morning can be a lazy one. However, yesterday we started something new…the boys were all dressed before 9am; I had even ironed the creased t-shirts and we were ready to go. I was stumbling into the unknown; playgroup with three littles! This is something I’ve been dreading and looking forward to in equal measure. I knew this would be the year that we needed to go out more, the twins need more interaction and new places to explore, a chance to become more independent.
I’d found the perfect playgroup for us, it is just over the road from our house so we can all walk there. It is in the morning but finishes in time for us to get back and have lunch before we are out again taking Lucas to pre-school. I loved the one I used to take Lucas but it is further away so doesn’t really fit round our day. Obviously, I was quite nervous; this is the first time I’ve really been out in public with all three boys on my own. The logistics were enough to give me a headache, how do I get them out the pushchair and inside, will I have to carry two of them, what do I do when Lucas needs the toilet? I had thought through all the worst-case scenarios in my head and concluded that if it all went horribly wrong I was only five minutes from home!
In the end, it went okay, we managed! I wouldn’t say it was any thing more than surviving at this stage but we got out and we did it. The people who organised it were lovely and so helpful, I knew another Mum there and everyone else was very friendly. I did have to run out quick when Lucas needed the toilet giving the nod to another mum to watch the twins but thankfully they didn’t notice I’d gone. They are so much clingier than Lucas ever was, I took Lucas to a new playgroup at their age and he left me without looking back! These both clung to me, darting off to have a quick look at something then coming right back to climb up me. I’m sure there will be tricks I learn as we go along and I’d love to hear how others do it with two or more!
We managed just over an hour and as we left I have to say I felt pretty euphoric, it’s only a small achievement but it is something I wasn’t sure I would ever feel able to do. When Lucas hit the terrible twos I sometimes struggled going out with just him but now he is older he just potters about and I know most of the time he will be behaving. The twins are very good really, it was only towards the end that they got tired and cranky. As we got home there was a feeling of something else, a little tinge of sadness that Arthur and Brandon really aren’t my babies anymore. They have been with me right from the start, at home playing, pretty content really but now it is time for us to venture out more, to try new things and to let them explore without Mummy. Exciting and a little scary all at the same time but I must admit it was nice to get back home!
I always joke that the only way I can get a picture of the twins is when they are strapped into something but it is actually the only way they will sit still! My phone is filled with hundreds of blurry photos of them so when I get one like this, when they are both looking at the camera I am so pleased! I love this one of them both; Brandon’s cheeky grin and Arthur’s little mischievous smile just make me happy everytime I see it.