As my extended maternity leave draws to a close, been thinking back over the last few days of how manic the last 11 months have been. Two boys under 3, a husband and a dog! Busy, busy, busy!!
Add to the mix the mad cap idea we had to begin our house renovations while on leave! As if I didn’t have enough to do! We bought a house in need of total renovation so this was always on the cards however the scale of which grew as our family grew. We are currently in the midst of a roof conversion, this will be a playroom/ study. Outside we are doing a single story 32m2 extension and a revamped garden which will be both practical and fun for the boys as they grow up.
The biggest issue we are facing is natural light, it is quite dark and sheltered where we are so getting as much light as possible into our house was always going to be a challenging issues. We debated at length and considered the cost trade off and in the end went with Velux, 4 in the roof conversion and 6 in the back extension. We had considered a long narrow roof light for the back extension however when we discussed with our architect his expert opinion was the Velux would give a deeper light and penetrate more in the older part which as a result of the extension was going to get even less light. See here for some further information and some inspiration. We are probably about 40% through our project so check back over the coming months for updates and pictures of the finished project.
My three year old has really taken an interest in the building particularly his new play space. He asked the Dada Fairy to build him a tree house, not sure about this myself!!
We have trawled the internet many times over the last few weeks and finally agreed on this. I actually think the addition of a firemans pole sealed the deal for my Fireman Sam fanatic! On a serious note an all weather playhouse will be a great addition to the revamped garden so hopefully the by the time we get to finalising the garden the budget will have some left for this.
Note: this is a collaborative post however all views and opinions are my own as always.
As you already know I am a mother to two beautiful (but very busy) boys ages 3 and 11 months. My close friend has two girls aged 5 and almost 3 so we are forever comparing note (in a very light hearted way!!) . I have absolutely nothing else to base this on but the time we spend with her lovely girls, which incidentally is quite a lot, that leads to me rationalise how I know im a mother of all boys!
1 – Shoes
I am FOREVER buying new shoes for my pair, they run, jump, hop, skip, fall, fall again and their shoes get destroyed. On the other hand my friends older girl has passed most of her shoes down to her little sister. My oldest barely gets to the end of a month let alone keep them in good enough condition for his little brother to use them.
2 – Toys
I let them pick whatever toys they want, im totally in favour of gender neutral play and toys. At the moment my oldest is totally drawn to all things Avengers related. I can talk superheroes with the best of them. What I do notice most about the toys, is my pair have them destroyed in no time! Between wanting to take them apart to see how they work – to rough play with them. However my lovely friends girls, their toys generally remain intact for far longer than they do in our house and get passed around cousins etc. No such luck here.
My boys eat A LOT. I am not exaggerating, the catch phrase in our house is “what can I eat now” I hear this relentlessly from morning to night. Boys, or maybe just my boys eat soooooooo much.
No different to shoes, they boys go through a serious amount of trousers! They love being outdoors so this means a lot trousers end up torn or so mucky that is pointless to even contemplate washing! I don’t mind this one bit, its good for them being outdoors but my laundry basket is forever full. I’m also like a demon when I see sales on boys tracksuits! I do stock up on cheap ones in sales especially for the summer months where they spend vast amounts of the day outside.
Any other mothers with boys feel the same? Please tell me its not just my pair of always hungry, outdoor loving, toy destroying, loveable rouges.
That sibling bond
As regular readers will know I have 2 boys, the oldest is 3 and half and the youngest will turn 11 months tomorrow. What I have noticed of late it’s the incredible bond that is forming between the two boys. It melts my heart every time. It has happened without any prompting from us, the 11 month old has started to come into himself, he is interested in toys, interested in play, he is nosey, he is determined and inquisitive. This has made the 3 year old stand up and take notice….actually I have a play mate. Slowly mammy isn’t being asked to be the Robin to his Batman, the Jessie to his Woody, the Milly to his Gio ( Team Umizoomi!).
The gentle reassuring touch that the 3 year old has towards his little brother, I first noticed this when we picked him up from playschool. Each day without fail, he gently rubs his hand straight away when he comes out the door, it’s a gentle reassuring touch as if to say “its ok im back”.
First thing in the morning when the little man wakes up, he calls out, not for Mamma or Dada, he wants his big brother who duly obliges and jumps in the cot beside him. Straight away little man gives him a kiss. He isn’t generous with those kisses, it takes a lot of asking and coaxing for him to give them away!
I fully anticipated when the little man came along big man would feel a little put out and there will be constant arguments over toys and not sharing. However this didn’t happen, not yet anyway. I am amazed at his willingness to share his toys. If the little man decides there is a particular toy he wants and big man is playing with it there isn’t a drama, he lets him touch it or even use it. He seems to know the fascination will be short lived and he will get it back quickly. I know it wont be like this forever but im enjoying it while it lasts.
The bond between them warms my heart every time, I know over the years there will be many ups and down but I truly hope this is the foundation for a lifetime bond.
A couple of weeks back I was sent some Movial Plus to try out. Having thought about it im probably not the best person to give it a good trial so I enlisted some very willing reviewers – introducing the legend that is the Nana Fairy (!) and my husband, lets call him the Dada Fairy.
Both the Nana and the Dada Fairy suffer for joint point, knee for Nana Fairy and fingers for Dada Fairy (he works in construction). The Nana Fairy consulted with her GP prior to commencing.
Lets talk a little about the product first – Movial Plus is a food supplement, specifically developed to support normal collagen formation for bones and cartilage. The key active ingredients are:
1. Hydrolyzed collagen type II which is a source of amino acids which give structure and tone to connective tissue;
2. Vitamin C which contributes to normal collagen formation, healthy bones and cartilage; and
3. Hyaluronic acid is a key component of the extracellular matrix, occurring naturally in the body, it is a key component of synovial fluid and cartilage.
I was most interested to see the results of the Nana Fairy as she has been having trouble with her knee since October. She is currently 20 days into taking these and is thrilled, she couldn’t straighten out her knee in the morning time for ages and often resorted to a muscle rub cream to help however after 12 days she no longer needed to do this. She is really happy with the progress and is going to keep going on them. She really does feel the joint is a lot more flexible since taking Movial Plus.
The Dada Fairy, while the difference for the Dada Fairy was not quite as dramatic as it was for the Nana Fairy he said there was a marked difference in the pain in the evening times following his days work. He too is going to keep using them.
Note: Thanks to Scope Healthcare for sending us out Movial to try. Please note I am not a doctor or pharmacist and if you have queries on joint pain do consult one or the other.