Why One Home, Six Hearts?

I thought it might be nice to write a little post about my blog name. “One Home, Six Hearts“.

I wasn’t really sure what sort of blog I wanted to write. If it was going to be a part of ‘me’, then it was definitely going to be a mix of everything – yummy food, stuff about me; things I like, my family…and what’s going on in my stupid head.

In short, “One Home, Six Hearts” is about my life and my loves. Six hearts symbolise the 6 most important people in my life and the home in which we grow together.

Our house is bonkers. It’s noisy and fast and funny and hard work, sometimes, but I love my babies, my husband and the rest of my family so, so much.

“Be Proud Of Yourself And Remember You Are Loved”.

That’s on a sign I have hanging on my door. You can’t help but read it each and every day, and it’s something I want everyone who is welcomed into my home to remember. Even if mummy is grumpy and stomping about, doing her best bear impression – she loves every fibre of your being.

Family is everything to me. From the food I cook, to the laundry I fold. I do it all with love… and if I bake for you, or share my make up, then you obviously hold a special place in my heart 😜

Kisses,

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My Music Playlist

I’ve always been a music lover and I’ll freely admit to having somewhat of an eclectic taste that probably isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. What I am listening to totally reflects my mood. I find it helps me, mentally and emotionally.

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Music helps me to focus or it allows me to distance myself from anxious thoughts. A distraction, if you like. Mindfulness is quite a thing now; you hear about it everywhere and I think most of us would agree that some sort of ‘time-out’ from our own over-thinking minds, can only be a good thing.

Mindfulness enables us to live fully in the present moment; thinking about breathing or focussing on sensations throughout the body whilst letting go of everything else that’s happening around us. Music helps me do this too – On a good day, I can completely close my mind to everything else, and just be.. in that very moment (anxiety allowing).

This theory is backed up by research as talked about here on the  BBC website.   I absolutely believe that this is true, and whilst it’s not a ‘magic’ fix to all ills, it can definitely give me a boost when I need it.

What music inspires you? What music gives you that positive boost or allows you to ‘feel’, if only for a minute?

As I said, my music taste is a mixed bag, but I like music that makes me feels something. I love a good power ballad when I want to shout my feelings from the rooftops, but simply can’t. I like to listen to something with sheer emotion and that helps me cry if I need to, or let my frustrations out by ‘singing’ along (sorry neighbours!) I also have been known to listen to more ’emo’ or darker music when the mood takes me.

On the whole, I’m pretty much a pop music lover. I’m really loving Ed Sheeran and Demi Lovato for some real emosh stuff and I absolutely love Twenty One Pilots for music that says what I’m thinking. The mind can be a scary place sometimes – music for me, is like a journey; a story and I relate to so many of their lyrics. ❤️

Here’s what I’ve been listening to recently:

  • The entire Divide album – Ed Sheeran (Absolutely beautiful emotional rollercoaster)
  • Make Me Wanna DieThe Pretty Reckless
  • Born This WayLady Gaga
  • Fire Meets GasolineSia
  • Wherever You Will GoCharlene Soraia (Never fails to make me cry!)
  • Stone Cold Demi Lovato
  • Nightingale Demi Lovato
  • Stressed Out Twenty One Pilots
  • The Run and Go Twenty One Pilots
  • HurtsEmeli Sande
  • HeavydirtysoulTwenty One Pilots
  • MigraineTwenty One Pilots

Also listening to Panic! At The Disco thanks to my teenager! ❤️

What’s on your music playlist?

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Someone take 2016 outside and give it a talking to

What is it with this year?

2016 has been a steaming pile of brown stuff, and that’s to put it politely. Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, Trump happened.

2016 has taken too many of our idols…. Bowie, Wilder, Ali, Prince; to name but a few. Terrorist attacks; innocent lives lost in the name of hate. The Brexit….the list goes on.

Sadly, due to the election hysteria, the horrific accident in Croydon this morning was somewhat overlooked by the media. But, it’s with those people who lost their lives, loved ones and the injured that my thoughts are with this evening. I can’t even begin to imagine the heartache and pain that many are feeling right now. I’m praying for you all tonight.

There’s not much left of 2016 and thank goodness for that. I for one will be glad to see the back of it.

On that note, and after yesterday’s promise to try to see the positives, I’m asking ‘What GOOD things have happened this year?‘ Help me out here… I’m struggling.

  1. My plantar fasciitis has (sort of) stabilised. Massive positive!!
  2. My family are happy and healthy – which is all you can wish for, isn’t it!
  3. The kids say Pokemon Go… although, I think the novelty well and truly wore off on that one once Summer was over. But it did get people outside and moving.
  4. Andy Murray won Wimbledon! Yay!!!
  5. My kids met Little Mix – who are awesome and really lovely (A big thanks to Jesy for making my girl feel important to you for that few moments that she had with you. You’ll never know how much that meant to her!)
  6. I’m back blogging! Woop!
  7. Autumn. My favourite season; I love the colours, brisk mornings, hot chocolate and red cups. Snuggly jumpers and comfy boots.

What positives can you add? I think we all need something good to focus on right now!

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Wanderlust

“He’s got the wanderlust, that one.”

That’s something everyone used to say about my Dad. He could never sit still and was always out somewhere. I remember one day when I was very young,  he and my mum had a few cross words and so he decided to go out on his bicycle. Until his accident, the bike was his life; much like a car or motorbike is to some.  I think he felt free; it was his ‘me-time’, an escape from the trials and tribulations of a busy household.

This particular day, he went out and was gone for hours. I remember it was the height of Summer; one of the hottest days I can think of.  In those days, we didn’t have mobile phones – I don’t even think we had a landline. We were worried that he’d had an accident and as the hours passed, we started to fear the worst.

Just before tea time, the back gate went. It was Dad; a very red, glowing version at that. The silly man had cycled all the way into central London which was more miles than I could probably count at that age. He was full of smiles and was oblivious to our concern. Mum was not best pleased but was thankful that he was OK (albeit sunburnt and probably suffering from heatstroke).

He told us all about his journey and that he’d stopped off in Covent Garden for a jug of cloudy lemonade. It sounded rather exciting to us children and I was slightly envious of his wanderlust. I still am, I suppose – I’ve never been that brave.

I see friends amazing photos on Facebook from their holidays. I read about backpacking, glamping and students taking a gap year to see the world. It must be marvelous to up sticks and travel all over with little care about anything other than the next pit stop. I’ve never been brave enough to venture much further afield than my own doorstep.

How about you? Are you an adventurous traveller, or do you rather stay close to home?

I’m taking part in Rosalilium’s Blog Every Day In May challenge. I’m looking forward to reading other #BEDM posts! You can find out more by clicking the badge below:
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My workspace

I don’t really have a physical workspace in all honesty. I steal my husband’s desk when he’s out at work, but other than that my workspace is my iPhone. I’m always on the go, so whatever I’m doing has to be mobile or it has to wait until the end of the day when the children are in bed.  With no beautiful workspace to photograph and share with you, I thought I’d write about what I consider essential items as a blogger/freelancer/creative.

Notebooks, sketchbooks and diaries

I live by lists. Oh, I do love a list!

I have a diary that I use for appointments, plans and blog schedules – my current favourite is my gorgeous Sprinkle Of Glitter Diary.sogoh

I am a complete Youtuber obsessive and I adore Louise. Her diary is upbeat and full of positivity and motivation – something I need a lot of.

I also have zillions of notebooks full of ideas, plans and schedules. I even have one for cleaning which sounds a bit OTT, but I like having a routine for day-to-day things. I rarely get everything done, but that’s just life isn’t it? Never enough hours in the day! I have zero memory so lists are my saviour – I like jotting down something that springs to mind randomly – I can have my best ideas and even ‘write’ posts in my head as I’m walking home from the school run!

I’m also a doodler. I have dreams of becoming an illustrator and I’m always sketching or drawing – I find it quite therapeutic.

Pens and Fineliners

I love pens – always have. Actually all stationery. I don’t know if it’s the same in your house, but we seem to have a phantom pen snatcher. I’m always buying pens but when the phone rings and I need to write down a message, you can bet your bottom dollar that not one can be found. So, I’ve now put a wooden pot next to my paperwork trays with some lovely new pens and fineliners (I draw with them).

A Smartphone

I honestly don’t know how I managed without an iPhone. It has everything together in one easily accessible place; from my calendar to my emails. Social media, to my photos. If I haven’t brought my DSLR out with me, my iPhone can be trusted to take a decent snap, especially outdoors. I can blog on it, answer emails, research posts… pretty much anything that I could do sat in front of a PC or laptop.

Tea

…and lots of it. I simply cannot function before my first cup of tea of the day. Don’t even ask me to try. As the saying goes, “Sometimes all you need is a nice cup of tea” and it’s so true (for me anyway). When things are going tits up and I want to throw things at my computer, I take five, make a brew and drink it while the damn thing’s still hot. Ah… Bisto.

A camera

As mentioned, I have a DSLR for my ‘proper’ photography. I’m still very much an amateur but I’ve taken some shots that I’m really rather proud of. As I say though, my iPhone is a fairly good back-up for quick shots, especially when I’m on the go.

Pretty fabrics

Not really ‘essential’ but great for photography. I use white/cream fabrics as backgrounds when I’m photographing make-up or anything that I want to really stand out.

PicMonkey

I’ve used this online image editing tool since it launched in 2012 (?) and I pay for a Royale plan because in my opinion, it’s totally worth it. It’s easy to use, effective and allows you edit and enhance images, create collages, add text/graphics; in a simple click of a mouse. I totally love it. (Please note, I’m not affiliated with PicMonkey in any way, shape or form; I’m simply a very happy customer.)

Oh…I really want an office now!

I’m taking part in the #BEDM challenge! You can find out more about it by clicking the badge below:
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What’s this ‘date night’ thing, you speak of?

It’s funny that ‘date night’ should be today’s #BEDM topic as I was thinking just the other day about how little ‘couple-time’ we get these days. Little to none really. I see people gushing on social media about ‘date night’ – parents and non-parents alike, and I waver somewhere between feeling insanely jealous, and then giving myself a shake as that’s just life – a sacrifice you happily make as a parent.

Then  I read articles that don’t agree with ‘date nights’ at all; deeming them an excuse to not make an effort the rest of the time. I suppose I see their point, but personally, I’d see a ‘date night’ as ‘me-time’ spent with the one person who truly understands.

In all honesty, by the time the children are asleep, all we want to do is tidy up, eat up and go to bed ourselves. But, we do try to grab ourselves an odd morning together; just the two of us. It might only be a couple of hours between pick ups and work shifts, but it’s our time and I enjoy it.

With this in mind, I thought I’d share some ‘couple-time’ (I think that’s probably a better name for it in our case) ideas for knackered parents.

Go for a coffee – Not romantic in the slightest but it’s a great way to relax and have a good old chat. I love popping to Starbucks/Costa and having a naughty coffee (mine’s a White Chocolate Mocha FYI) so it feels like a treat as well as some well-deserved chilling time with my favourite grown-up.

Catch a daytime movie – Time is usually against us on this one. But visiting the cinema was one of the ‘dates’ we used to enjoy a lot before we had our family, so it makes us feel young and free again!

Eat Alfresco – Breakfast on the balcony, or an impromptu picnic in the park can be equally romantic and if you’re clever, you can whip up some suitable food in no time at all. Obviously not so lovely if it’s the middle of a Winter freeze, but we have been known to wrap up and go for a long walk with a flask of tea!

Cook for each other – Food is a big part of our family and so going to the effort of cooking a special meal for someone means so much. We often do this to mark special occasions – Birthday’s, Valentines, anniversaries.

Go out for breakfast – If you have school age children, and happen to both have a day off together (I know – shock!) then why not take the opportunity to go out for breakfast? OK, it’s not quite the same as going out for dinner, but we really enjoy it! Great food, great company and amazing conversation – what more do you need?

Do you and your partner have Date Nights? What do you do?

I’m taking part in Rosalilium’s Blog Every Day In May challenge. I’m looking forward to reading other #BEDM posts! You can find out more by clicking the badge below:
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What’s in my bag – the mum edition

I can not tell you how pleased I was that I’d cleaned out my bag a few days before seeing that today’s #BEDM prompt is ‘What’s in your bag?’.
That said, I am not going to post images of the horror that was the inside of my bag. No. Just…. No.

Please tell me that I’m not alone in finding small children’s snotty tissues, half eaten apples and bits of popcorn stuck to the bottom? My gorgeous Cath Kidston bag was subjected to all of the above said atrocities, along with 10 billion receipts, several pens that no longer work and more inhalers than my child will ever need in a 24 hour period. I know I never like to be without one, but they seem to be breeding!!

I think the most random thing I found in my bag (and how I hadn’t noticed it when rifling for spare change, I have no idea) was this rather disheveled looking, naked fashion doll. Nobody remembers putting her there so I can only assume that this plastic, popcorn-munching stowaway climbed in all by herself. That’s what my daughter thinks, anyway!

doll

Other items that I do actually consider essential include:
Tissues – a must-have for snotty noses, sticky faces and make-shift doll blankets. Likewise, baby wipes are also universally useful for pretty much everything.
Lip balm – annoyingly, this isn’t even mine. It’s my childs…and it’s a Balmi too!
A manicure kit – Don’t laugh but this has saved my life on many occasion. Last week I snapped my nail backwards whilst trying to grapple with all the gym kits, school bags, coats and other *stuff* the kids plonk at your feet the second they escape from school (ouch!) It broke, and then kept catching on everything I touched which hurt like hell, so out came my trusty little nail kit and I completed minor surgery on myself, right there on the school playing field. It’s also stopped all hell from breaking loose when I couldn’t open a My Little Pony blind bag in the middle of Tesco car park.
Kidilicious snacks – I’m not one to use sweets as a bribe… but fruit snacks that children think are sweets? I have no problem with that 😆
Purse, keys, phone (obviously)
Water bottle – Not that I ever get to drink it myself, but it’s important to keep hydrated!
Pens – preferably ones that work are most useful *rolls eyes*
Notebook – I carry one with me everywhere. I do love a list!
Spare hair bands – I just know that halfway to school my daughter will realise she has sports and needs her hair tied back. I buy millions of the things; usually the big bundle you can buy in Primark for £1. I just pick up a pack everytime I go in there.

Not massively exciting, admittedly! So, what’s in your bag?

I’m looking forward to reading other #BEDM posts! You can find out more by clicking the badge below:
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Monday Musings

I’m back with day 2 of #BEDM and today’s prompt is share an opinion-based post. Hmm, well, as much as I like to be opinionated, I try to keep controversy off the blog (for now anyway 😆 ) so instead, I’m sharing a tongue in cheek list of things that I’ve learned in recent times; as a parent and well…. as a human being.

  • No matter how much fun you have with your kids on a day out, one will always whine all the way home.
  • ‘Netflix and chill’ DOES NOT MEAN ‘Netflix and chill’!
  • Fun fairs make you spend almost a weeks grocery money on everything that will make your children puke.
  • It is possible to love and freaking despise LEGO at the same time.
  • I can make sh*t disappear by the time I count to 5. iPads, phones, wi-fi connections….
  • There is no such thing as ‘too many eyeshadows’…or nail polishes, make up brushes, blushers, shoes….things…..
  • I’m a great judge of character, and so is Karma.
  • Wine o’clock should be written into my daily routine.
  • It is possible to become widowed by a video game.
  • You simply can not declutter anything with a child around. The ‘bin/recycle’ pile suddenly becomes a trove of ‘my favouritest toy EVER’.
  • Something more painful than helping your child with their homework is teaching your mum to use a mouse.
  • When you finally find something your toddler will eat and stock up on it in case the factory burns down and they can’t make it anymore…you can guarantee they will hate it by the time you’ve unpacked the shopping bags.
  • I do not give my youngest enough credit. She is fearless and determined. It’s me that over-thinks and worries too much.
  • After having a wonderful long weekend with my favourites, I declare that all weekends should consist of three days. I might start liking Mondays then! 😆

I’m looking forward to reading other #BEDM posts! You can find out more by clicking the badge below:
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New year, New challenge!

Yeah yeah… you’ve heard that all before, I know. Me too, but this IS a new challenge that just so happens to have come about as we wearily stumble our way into 2016 full of too much Prosecco & mince pies…. Oh, and cheese. FAR TOO MUCH CHEESE!

Anyway, I’m not going to suddenly find my inner gym bunny and start sweating on a treadmill, no. I am going to blog! Huzzah!! Something I used to love and then loathed for a bit. I’m hoping I’ll love it again as I do miss it in some ways. I am what they call a creative soul… which basically means I am a slob… I make mess wherever I go and I blame my ‘creative mind’. You should try it, sometimes I even get away with it!

In all seriousness, I like to be creative, whether it’s jotting down my inane ramblings, penning a poem, drawing something pretty, cooking my heart out in the kitchen (the mess people! Oh, the mess!) or just painting my nails… I like to be doing something so a blog is somewhere I can document all those things whilst *hopefully* connecting with some like-minded peeps along the way.

So… ladies and gentlebugs this is my very first post on my very new and shiny blog. I will be posting all about our family meals; there might even be some healthy eating going on… I said might. I am really in to beauty products and homewares… totally Cath Kidston, Make Up Revolution, Primark  and Yankee Candle OBSESSED and I do love a bit of YouTube so fully expect me to mention Tanya Burr, Zoella, Fleur De Force and the like…. I think I’ll have to write a post about my fave YouTubers!!

I have some recipes to write up, so those will be on the blog soon.

If you want to find out a little bit more about me, then have a read of this!

Happy New Year everyone! I really hope that 2016 brings you every happiness!

If you’re a tweeter, please do give me a follow (love you long time!)

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