A Smart Family Movie Night

As you get older you really begin to appreciate Christmas not as a time for receiving but as a time to kick back, relax and spend time with your nearest and dearest.  I’ve been feeling really festive this year and so we have put the tree up a little earlier than usual.  I always try to plan some festive activities with the kids like making paper chains, crafting our own decorations or baking mince pies but sometimes you just want to do nothing but snuggle up on the couch and watch a good film!


It’s great that the kids are a little older this year as we can begin to enjoy more films as a family and use the time to chat, laugh and generally be together.  We make up a batch of popcorn and when that’s gone it’s time for warm milk and homemade cookies.  The kids love to grab a blanket and get super cosy.  Some of the films on our list to watch this year include Elf, Home Alone, The Grinch and The Muppet Christmas Carol.  I can’t wait to hear what Logan would get up to if he were left Home Alone!

We recently bought a Smart TV like these which was a complete revelation to us as you basically have a whole catalogue of films at the touch of a button – gone are the days of traipsing down the video shop!  If your kids are anything like mine they don’t want to wait to watch something, they want it there and then.  The whole experience of watching a film can be a really magical experience for a child – I remember hiring the same films and just as valuable as any other activity you might plan.  If you have young children like me it’s likely they won’t have experienced many of the Christmas films that you and I regard as classics and so to watch their expressions and reactions is something you’ll remember forever.


My #NextmasWishlist

I don’t know about you but I thought I was reasonably well prepared for the winter when I looked in my kids wardrobes but I think I forgot just how cold it actually gets.  It’s been the sort of cold this week which actually takes your breath away.  So, without further ado I began having a nose through the Next website and thought it would be fun to share my #NextmasWishlist.  I love Next, as a busy mum I can just do a quick shop online and collect in store when I’m next passing by.

So up first is Logan – he’s 5.5yrs old now and has begun to show a real interest in what he wears.  I try to let him have free reign of his wardrobe choices but sometimes you just have to offer up a few pre-selected choices! Here are my winter picks for Logan from Next….

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Navy Skull Jumper £11-£16, Genius Jumper £11-£12, Navy Shawl Neck Jumper £14-£19, Khaki Parka Jacket £42-£48, Black Grey Hi Tops £22-£28,


Now for the little lady…I always find it harder to shop for girls as there’s so much choice but here are some of my favourite winter picks from Next this season….

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Oatmeal Bunny Tunic £6.50-£7.50, Navy Cable Cardigan £20-£27, Cream Faux Fur Gilet £26-£32, Navy Spot Chelsea Boots £30-£38, Cream Snood £7-£9


Have you done a winter wardrobe shop? I’d love to see what your little ones will be wearing this winter.

Happy Nextmas!



Cats, Christmas and DIY

HELLO! It’s Christmas! Well, nearly.  There is a definite Christmassy feel in the air.  It feels like people are putting their trees up earlier and earlier every year.  I am excited about and dreading putting the tree up in equal measure.  I shall tell you for why.  If you follow my Instagram you’ll have seen this year we’ve had a new addition to the family, perhaps not quite the sort of new addition I wanted but nonetheless he’s quite cute.  Say hello to Monty.  A black and white ninja with a penchant for ankles and dangly things – watch out Matt!


Monty is now 5mths old and attacks ANYTHING that dangles, swings or moves.  I try and do the ironing and he’s swinging off the cord from the iron, I hang clothes on the airer and there he is batting a pair of knickers around the kitchen.  Now, can you see why I am dreading putting the tree up? No sooner is it up, it will be down.  No doubt about it.  So – if you happen to visit our house this Christmas and the bottom of the tree is looking decidedly bare it’s because we’ve done that thing where you move everything up 6” so the baby, or in our case, the cat can’t quite reach it.

Besides all the cat shenanigans there has been illness and a little DIY going on.  Florence had a horrendous cough thing which she passed to Matt and now she’s just coming out the other side of Hand, Foot and Mouth or Impetigo.  It’s not been too bad though, she’s been in good spirits which makes the whole debacle much more bearable. I’m hoping to take her to M&S café for a little lunch on Friday as a treat for being so good, plus mummy wants a jacket potato!


Logan’s not been around much as it was his weekend at his dads last week and so I am really looking forward to seeing him when I pick him up from school tomorrow.  Maybe because I don’t see him every day in his school uniform but it still makes me well up a bit.

The house has had a little bit of TLC too.  I’ve busied myself making these cute wall letters for the kids’ rooms whilst the father in law and Matt tiled the kitchen and I am delighted with how it looks.  I can now splash buttercream and jam up the walls to my heart’s content.


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To finish off the month on a good note, I got a Merit in my first college assessment on my cake decorating course.

Roll on December, we’re ready for you!

Caroline xx

What’s your role in the family?

When one of your kids is poorly it really brings out a side of them you don’t often see.  Florence has been ill since Sunday evening and is only just showing signs of improving.  Luckily I work from home so I can fit some work in around nose wiping and Calpol dispensing.  It’s not just help with that stuff she needs though, it’s emotional support and comfort.  Anyone that knows Florence fairly well will know that she’s a fairly strong minded little madam and doesn’t often sit still for cuddles but this last week she’s been like a Koala and during the night she moans for ‘Muuuuuummyyyyyyyyyyy’.


I’ve realised that we all kind of have roles in our family.  I seem to be the one that dishes out the medicine, cuddles the sickly kids,  and makes sure they have clean bedding when their sick in it.  I’d describe it as a ‘caring’ role but that’s not to say Dad doesn’t care.  He cares, he cares a lot but in a very different way.  Dad’s more likely to be the one the kids run to when they want to sit on someone’s shoulders or when they want someone to chase them up the hill.  Dad pulls his top up and makes the kids laugh (!) and blows raspberries on their bellies. If Logan wants his train track making or Lego fixing it’s Matts job. Dad is the clown that keeps us all smiling through weeks like this.


Logan’s the big brother and a sensitive soul.  He’s growing into a really thoughtful chap, between ALL THE TALKING.  Logan used to hate it when Florence joined in with his games for fear she would devour every toy she picked up.  It’s all different now though, Logan actually invites Florence up to his bedroom to play and shuts the gate at the top of the stairs.  He cares for his sister and it’s really lovely.  Even though he’s not here all the time they have bonded like any normal brother and sister would.  Perhaps even better.  Logan can also be the joker, he loves to make Florence laugh and his imagination his overactive to put it mildly which can sometimes make him a little wary.  A six year old girl recently told him on a visit to soft play that there was a snake in the soft play area.  After which Logan began to shake, cry and refuse to go back in! Thanks weird, bob-haired girl! When you’re feeling a bit down you can always rely on Logan for either a weird joke or a kind word.

Finally there’s Florence.  I’d say she’s the boss, a 3ft boss.  A sweet looking girl with a huge personality. She loves Daddies jokes but when she’s ill she’s a real Mummies girl.  She brings me tissues to wipe her nose and curls up in a ball on my stomach to watch cartoons. When she’s not ill she’ll get stuck in, there’s no standing on ceremony with Florence, in at the deep end and worry about the consequences later. Hates wearing socks, a real barefooted warrior.