Last weekend we were headed to the Peak District to celebrate my aunt’s 70th. As it is a fair old distance for the kids in the car we decided to do our usual and break the journey at a National Trust place along the way. We chose Sudbury Hall because I heard it had a great play area and also because we thought that the kids may enjoy the museum of childhood if the weather turned sour.
LM’s 2nd Birthday party and Pumpkin Picking!
Our gorgeous girl turned 2 on Saturday and I think it is safe to say she had a lovely birthday… even though I’m pretty sure she didn’t really get what was going on!
We started off with presents on our bed. The lighting for these shots is terrible and we’re obviously all very sleepy but I love the happiness nonetheless. There were some lovely siblings moments where Monkey helped LM open her presents (and play with them haha) and she was definitely very excited by them.
Me and Mine Sept/Oct 2016 – an autumn walk
I’m a bit late joining in with the fab Me and Mine linky this month. In fact I wasn’t planning on joining up at all as the only shot I have of us as a family this month is one on our bikes, which isn’t the best.
But then today, after a slightly odd morning with ratty kiddies who are coming down with colds (and therefore slightly ratty parents too) we decided to get out and get some fresh air on a little autumnal walk. We found the most conkers I’ve ever seen in my life and had a good old nature hunt in general.
Then during a little game of family hide and seek we managed to grab a few very happy family selfies.
We had a lovely walk and as always a bit of fresh air did us all the world of good. So this is us, at the beginning of October, enjoying autumn.
Well, it’s official, we are now well into September and Autumn has well and truly arrived. There’s lots I love about autumn but if I’m honest there are some things I don’t love about it too.
What I love
Every outing can turn into a nature trail
Monkey is constantly on the hunt for acorns at the moment and I have had to explain it is still a bit early for conkers. In addition to the usual sticks that come home with us even after the shortest walk, we now have leaves and acorns and all sorts of other bits entering the house on a daily basis. Hubs is less than impressed by this haha.
We have already been blackberry picking 5 times locally and once when visiting Auntie mags. We’ve had 3 blackberry crumbles already and a freezer filled with blackberries. Always great fun foraging with the kiddies and yummy free food afterwards, win win!
Crisp air and sunny skies
I’ve always loved a fresh autumn day and though we aren’t quite there yet this year I am looking forward to those crisp mornings.
While I don’t exactly love the rain that autumn can bring, the kids do adore puddle splashing and we’ll I adore their happy faces. Thank goodness for waterproofs is all I can say!
Kicking up leaves
Always one of the best autumn activities and I am looking forward to kicking the leaves with both kiddies this year, especially LM as she is older and I think will appreciate it more this year.
What I don’t love
Big horrible spiders
Yes at this time of year the big beasties find their way inside. We’ve actually been really lucky since moving in here and haven’t had many… But already 2 this year so our luck ha changed. I’m less terrified of them than I used to be and really try and put a brave face on for the kids, but in truth they still scare the bejeesus out of me and make me feel quite nauseous. Eurgh definitely not something I like about this time of year.
Getting darker in the day
We often get out in the late afternoon with the kids and have lovely evening walks in the summer so I’m not looking forward to the darker evenings. Especially not in winter when it is dark around 4pm! Just not the same being outside in the dark. Also, since becoming a runner this will really test me, not so nice running through the local woods in the dark is it? So I guess I will be pounding pavements with street lighting instead through the winter!
With colder weather inevitably come germs too. One of my friends’ little boy has already come down with croup this year and I so hope neither of ours get it again this year! Absolutely terrifying when your little one is struggling to breathe in the early hours and just hope we are luckier this year! Even without croup though we are bound to get a heck of a lot of germs, especially with Monkey starting school. The coughing through the night and covering everyone with menthol rub and just generally feeling rubbish while trying to parent a poorly and ratty child. Yeah not looking forward to that aspect of the next few months.
We’ve had a really wonderful summer this year, so full of smiles. While there are definitely downsides to the colder months so far we are having a fun autumn (it helps that the weather has still been really good, on the whole) and will no doubt have tonnes of fun over the rest of autumn and winter. I just hope we aren’t too unlucky with all the germs this year!
What do you love and loathe about autumn? What’s your favourite time of year?
An Autumnal Week and a visit to NT Box Hill, Surrey
I love Autumn, I always have. All the gorgeous colours on the trees and the best days are the ones with a clear blue sky and a crisp feeling in the air. We have been really lucky I think with the weather so far this autumn and there has been some really glorious days. We are also really lucky where live as we are surrounded by trees and I love seeing all of the colour when I look outside or go for a walk.
Our week started off with a lovely trip down to London. We started in the east visiting some very good friends of ours in Bromley. Both of their kiddies are almost exactly 6 months older than each of ours so it is lovely watching them all grow up. We wrapped up and went for a play at the local park and the littlies had a lovely time… but unfortunately both the older 2 fell and hurt themselves, which led to Monkey having an epic meltdown which was a real shame.
Then we drove west to stay overnight with my auntie In Raynes Park. From there we went to Box Hill in Surrey to enjoy some gorgeous autumnal scenery. I remember visits to Box Hill as a kid and it was lovely to share it, and the amazing views, with hubs and the kiddies.
It was a glorious day and we had a great time exploring – though it is worth noting that many of the trails, including the Hill Top Stroll, are really NOT suitable for buggies. LM did not enjoy bouncing around all over the place and in some areas we had to carry it anyway as it just couldn’t get over the stones and tree roots so we gave up after a while and just carried her or let her walk. Some of the trees are magnificent though and it was also really fun walking past cattle which grazing on the hillside.
There was lots to do and we enjoyed a gorgeous bit of sloping hillside with magnificent views… though we nearly lost the ball a couple of times and had to run and catch it!
There are a lot of natural play areas to explore and a nature play trail… unfortunately we only just started on this route before Monkey fell and scraped himself on the logs, giving him a huge graze on his side. Bless him this led to another meltdown and in some ways I don’t blame him but he really is a drama queen as his meltdowns are the same for a tiny cut as a nasty one. Anyway he wasn’t much interested in playing any more after that so it was homeward bound.
Monday dawned very wet and miserable and with hubs having a crisis at work and me with PMT it was definitely a gloomy start to the week and I was honestly so grumpy, bored and just fed up. But I have decided to snap out of it and stop being so moany as I am so lucky to have the life that I have and wouldn’t want it any other way.
So the rest of the week has seen some lovely autumnal strolls with the kiddies. Now LM has some proper little boots to walk about in that keep her feet dry in the wet grass we are able to get out and explore a bit more on foot. We don’t get very far as she is fascinated by every blade of grass but still it is lovely to see her wandering about and enjoying the fresh air.
Finally, on Thursday LM and I visited one of our favourite local farms (Sacrewell Farm). A neighbour gave us a voucher that expired this week so though it felt weird to go without Monkey I decided it worked better for the two of us to go alone, and actually, we had such a lovely time! She loved all the animals and really enjoyed wandering about and chasing the pigeons and even though it was a really wet and miserable day it was such a lovely morning. LM went through 3 pairs of trousers though with all her plonking on her bottom – I have ordered her some waterproof trousers and they will come in very handy for the rest of the autumn and winter!
So there we have it, a very autumnal week this week and now I have got over myself and stopped acting like a mardy teenager I have really enjoyed myself. How has your week been?
Autumn Walk and Leaf Painting
Friday morning, to give me a bit of a break, Daddy took Little Miss to the office with him for a couple of hours in between feeds. At that time of day she is happiest snoozing in the baby carrier so Daddy has become quite the baby wearer! It felt a little weird for her to be away from me for so long but what was really lovely was that I got to have some good quality time one on one with Monkey. Daddy has spent most of his paternity leave focussing on Monkey and they have got even closer lately and while Monkey has seemed ok with me being with the baby most of the time, I have wanted to get back to doing some nice things with him.
Conker Crafts and Activities for Toddlers
After our lovely walk a couple of weeks ago I said I would let you know what we had got up to with our massive conker haul, and well here it is! We have been conker crazy in our house lately! Some activities have been more successful than others but we’ve had fun trying lots of things.
Chasing Bubbles and Collecting Conkers
I love Autumn. I love all the colours and the crisp autumn air. It is particularly lovely with the warm weather lately in that there are gorgeous blue skies and a bit of warmth in the sun to go with all of this. At 8 months pregnant I am not getting out to enjoy the autumn as much as I would normally and it has been bugging me.
So, one day last week Monkey and I went for a little Autumn walk and it was just lovely. Monkey loves going for a walk but I do try and take a couple of things to entertain him while we are out, and one of the best things is a big bubble wand. Aren’t these things just fabulous inventions? Just a wave around and you get some gorgeous big bubbles. With some cheap bubble liquid from the garden centre they are refillable too so we keep refilling and using it.
An Autumnal Painting Attempt – 27 mths
Well now we are in September I guess it is officially autumn. The mornings are definitely cooler though I have been enjoying the sunny days. With my pregnancy progressing (and the joys of SPD) it is getting harder for me to get out and about with Monkey. We manage but there isn’t quite the amount of walks and time outside that there used to be. Meaning I have to find ways to entertain him at home.
On the whole he is a lot more easier these days but it is nice to try a new activity sometimes so I thought we would try some autumnal painting this week. My attempts to guide Monkey down a crafting route rarely succeed so I usually let him have completely free reign to create what he likes. But he is growing up all of the time and you don;t know how they will get on with something if you don’t try, and as he has been loving colouring in some of my amazing drawings when we draw a road, I thought he may like to do something similar with painting.
So when I was setting up the painting stuff I quickly drew a couple of trees, in the hope that he would like to either fingerprint or paint some leaves onto the trees.
He was dead excited when he saw the trees and I painted a few dots on to give him an idea of what he could do….
Then he dove straight in and painted all over the paper. Lol, was worth a try but after that I very much sat back and let him create as he wished. Clearly not bothered yet about making a picture that resembles anything and he had fun so that was all that mattered. They are nice autumnal colours too hehe.
He was very proud of his pictures too as he insisted on showing them to his Aunt & Uncle when they popped round later that day.
More Autumnal Fun and kicking up leaves – 17-18 months
The clue is in the title really but Monkey loves kicking up leaves! My regime of making sure I tire him out enough to nap well and sleep well is working and involves a lot of time wandering about outdoors. Actually I think that was just a blip as his naps are basically back to normal now, yay! Sorry, sidetracked, yes lots of time walking outdoors. When my mum (Nanny) and I first showed him kicking up the leaves he looked at us like we had gone mad, but lately he loves it! As you can see in the pictures 🙂
Not much else to say about it is there really! So cute though! In fact I am finding this to be such a cute age. I have pretty much thought that at every age but his personality is really developing now and he is such a funny little monkey. He’s playing so much more independently, babbling away constantly (though still no words) and just chuckles and grins all the time!