Thursday, 24 September 2015

New Chapters and New Starts

I would like to apologise for the lack of blog posts recently; it's mainly due to new chapters in our family life. I am still trying to get my head around it all and September was the start of change.

Ruby returned to school and is now in year 2, it only seems like a few weeks ago that she was tiny. Ruby in general likes school and seems happy; homework on the other hand is a different story. If you are a regular reader you will already be aware of the homework battles we face. My opinions have not changed, I dislike it and really don't agree with it. I see Ruby at the end of a school day looking exhausted and really feel for her as I try to encourage her to complete the silly amount of homework which she is set. Ruby often ends up in tears as reading and writing are not Ruby's favourite past times, if it was story telling or drama then it would be a very different situation.

Lottie turned 3 in the summer holidays and is now attending play school 3 full days a week! It is very clear that she loves it as every day she asks if it is a playschool day! Lottie has a very different character to Ruby and is much more girlie, this becomes a problem in the mornings as she likes to pick out her own clothing. Lottie's Peppa Pig obsession continues to grow, whereas by the age of 3 Ruby was beginning to go off Peppa. I think I'm going to feel somewhat sad when Lottie leaves behind the Peppa pig stage.

Now an update on me, I will put my hands up and admit I've found it hard being at home on my own. I miss having my little friend Lottie to keep me company and I miss the summer holiday fun I had with both girls.

Over the last month I have been trying to work out how to best utilise my days without Lottie as I really want to feel a sense of achievement. I am the church warden at my local church and I plan on using some of my time to help with the administration and other such things. I also want to have some 'me time' , after years of looking after my girls full time. I experienced reflexology for the very 1st time the other week and it took most of the session for me to relax, it's really isn't something that comes naturally to me. Does anyone have any tips? I have also just enrolled on a theology course at night school, I'm incredibly nervous but looking forward to the challenge of undertaking some studying, so what this space. And again I'm sorry again for the infrequent updates.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

National Trust - Mottisfont

This summer we have been incredibly blessed to be able to visit a number of National Trust properties, and over the coming weeks I am going to be writing about them.

The National Trust has over 500 houses up and down the country, which they preserve so that members of the public can go and view them. Most of the properties have something for all ages including the children. Membership can be bought for a family for £104 which works out at just under £9 a month, I think its well worth it. If you would like more details about membership then you can visit the National Trust membership page.

Mottisfont is located close to Romsey in Hampshire and just down the road from Peppa Pig World, which we visited for Lottie's birthday. Monttisfont was a medieval priory and is set in beautiful gardens including a very popular rose garden that attracts a lot of people to view it. We visited just after the roses had seen their best but it was still an amazing sight.

We decided to visit Mottisfont as I had seen online that they had a water play area for Ruby and Lottie; we were not disappointed when we discovered it in the grounds! Ruby and Lottie played for ages making dams and taking it in turns to let the water out and walk through the water.

Mottisfont has an excellent play area called the climbing bog where children can follow a trial of wooden tree stumps, climbing frames etc before you complete the course. Lottie was a bit too small for this but Ruby absolutely loved it.

Whilst visiting Mottisfont we came across some artwork by Lauren Child, the author and animator of Charlie and Lola. Charlie and Lola is a big hit in our house and the girls regularly listen to one of the stories whilst they go to bed. Staff told us that Lauren would be bringing her artwork to Mottisfont for an exhibition to show her work to the public the following week. I was disappointed to have missed the exhibition by only a few days but if you can I would really recommend that you go and check it out if you are near to Romsey.

Whilst browsing the shop, a piece of artwork drew my attention, it was by Lauren Child and it had Lola holding her bunny. My mum and I stood looking at it and realised how much it looked like Lottie; anyone who knows Lottie will know she has a bunny I knitted her called Li-Li, which goes everywhere Lottie does.

I decided I had to buy Lottie the artwork with it being so similar to her and also because it was commissioned in July and that so happens to be Lottie's birth month. The number on the artwork was 21 in the collection and 2 add 1 equals 3 the age Lottie is now! So Lottie now has her own very 1st piece of artwork, well actually its my 1st too! Do you see the resemblance between Lottie and the artwork?

I wouldn't hesitate to recommend to Mottisfont as a place to visit and you can find more detail on their website here.