We’ve just had that time of year again of birthdays galore! Although with the house renovations in full swing, we kept it very simple and reasonably quiet. Sadly for Rose and Eoin’s birthdays they were suffering from bad tonsillitis 😦 so we spent the time at home having lots of birthday hugs on the sofa.
For Benedict’s birthday, we were staying at Nana and Grandad’s house while our bathroom was being done. I was sad not to have made any of the birthday cakes this year, but Benedict was more than happy with a Paw Patrol birthday cake!
We had a lovely birthday lunch at Franky and Bennie’s with Aunty Jude before heading to the Play Farm soft play in Cheltenham.
Rose’s birthday consisted of Calpol top-ups, sleeping, opening presents and eating Colin the Caterpillar cake. Despite that, we surprisingly had a lovely family day as Eoin was off work being ill too!
And Eoin’s 30th birthday… we’re waiting to celebrate properly!
Finally, we’ve got Benedict all set to start school in two weeks. He’s very excited about looking like Daddy going to work with his shirt and tie!
(Hmm… which boy will he be at school; angelically good or mischievously naughty…?!)
A couple of weeks ago, a group of us were lucky enough to spend a few days in the Lake District in a house with the most incredible view imaginable! It was like waking up to a real live painting every morning.
It was an awesome few days spending time with other young families similar to us. It was also a great opportunity for the children to have fun and play together. We were a pretty big group – in total there were 15 adults and 10 children all staying under one roof – and somehow it actually worked! At around 7.30pm each night the parents would gradually disappear with their children for their baths and bedtime, and then by 8.30pm the adults were enjoying the evening together with great food and company!
The first day we enjoyed a boat trip on Lake Windermere and ended up in a beautiful English restaurant for lunch over looking the lakes. Above are some of the children on the boat.
Most of the week it rained so we were on the look out for day trips indoors. We found Beatrix Potter World which I would really recommend. It was a long queue to get in but the amount of detail that had been put into creating the characters and scenes from the stories was truly astounding. And the children absolutely loved it, it was like the books had been brought to life.
Above – story time before bed. And below, some playing first thing in the morning
Below – the adults’ very serious play time with scrabble
Below – the whole crew on our last morning together:
While the house is looking like a building site; with dust everywhere and no bathroom to use, we have taken refuge at my parents’ home. We have been so thankful for it. It’s also been a great opportunity for Benedict and Rose to spend more time with Nana and Grandad.
We’ve been at my parents for 2 weeks now. Last week was very special because everyone was home (apart from Eoin!) which never happens. However, we’d had some distressing news that my mum might have cancer. It’s looking very positive now though, she’s had surgery to remove it and now we’re just waiting for the biopsy results, but the consultant seemed very positive about it.
Our family has always been very close, but last week when everyone was around I felt that we had come even closer together and were really looking out for each other. I’m incredibly thankful for my family! I’m honestly not sure what I’d do without them.
We made the most of being together and went on some nostalgic day trips from our childhood. Hannah took us to Puzzle Wood which played beautifully to Benedict’s imagination and Rose’s enthusiasm to run and explore! It was a lot of fun…
We also had an awesome day out at Goodrich Castle
And Prinknash Abbey with Granny and Grandfather…
Although we’re making the most of it and I am so so thankful for my parent’s generosity, the kids and I are missing Eoin like crazy. It’s like our family has been put on hold while our house is sorted. I keep telling myself it’ll be worth it in the end, but it doesn’t make it any easier being apart from Eoin for long periods of time. Benedict keeps asking if daddy will be here for his birthday next week and I’m so glad to say that he will be! Eoin, we miss you!!
(Our dining room and sitting…)
We have been in our new home for three and a half months now and what a rollercoaster it has been! I knew it was going to be hard but I don’t think I was prepared for how hard it has actually been; renovating a house while living in it with two little ones is not too fun… at all!
But it’s been character building (!) and probably very good for me – I’m being taught to let go of things; to stop having to be in control all the time. But I’m still battling with that!
We’re getting there though. We’ve accomplished a lot in the last few months and now things are really starting to take shape. Most electrical, plumbing and building work has been completed, our new bathroom is about to be put in and Eoin will be fitting our new kitchen at the beginning of August which is really very exciting.
What’s also very exciting is that we found out a week after we moved into our new house that we were expecting baby number 3! Another girl due on 6th December, so we still have time to get things ready!
(Eoin hard at work removing the “rockery” around the fireplace)
(But it all got too much for Rose)
(The bath panelling had been removed when we first arrived and these nails were just sticking out of it)
(Taking down the ivy and doing some weeding in the back garden)
(We had a horrible accident with Rose on the patio, she fell over and split her head a few weeks ago. Such a horrible experience, but it didn’t stop Rose from having fun in A&E though)
We’re finally moving house this Wednesday! It’s been a long time coming but we’re nearly there. We’re moving just a five minute drive away to a house… with a garden! The new house will be a labour of love – it needs A LOT of TLC, but I’m excited to start this new adventure with our little family.
I’ll be sad to leave our flat; it will always be our first proper family home together. I remember the first day we moved in and placing a 4-month old sleeping Benedict on the lovely new empty carpet in our bedroom. Now, three and a half years later he is as full of life as ever (while writing this he’s pretending to be a bee and buzzing around the room… now he’s being a tree…)
And Rose! The most precious memory I have is bringing Rose home from hospital on the night she was born and having her sleep beside us in her cot – so beautiful and so so tiny.
Rose having a tea party with her dollies on the balcony:
Benedict and Rose aboard the ‘London Express’:
Some more memories:
Last June, Eoin’s family surprised their mum and dad at Gatwick airport as they were trying to find their gate number in the departure lounge! They were on their way to Rome to celebrate their Ruby wedding anniversary, but little did they know we were all coming too! I think it was a good surprise!
We had such a great time, and we got to spend a lot of time with Eoin’s sister who is studying out there at the moment. We also got to meet the Late Father, Bishop Javier Echevarria – it was such a special moment, especially as he passed away in December last year.
I remember asking Benedict what he wanted for his 3rd birthday cake a few weeks before his actual birthday last July, and he replied, very definitely: “A Noah’s Ark cake…” I thought he was bound to forget that idea by the time his birthday came round, but its been proven – children are like elephants… they will never forget!
But Eoin likes a challenge!! And he really doesn’t give up easily… He did such an incredible job with this cake and has really set the bar high for future birthday cakes!
Benedict’s face was a picture when he first saw it, he was really overwhelmed I think.
A week later, it was back to baking again for Rose’s 1st birthday cake. I absolutely love making the cakes but I’m so messy at the design and decorating bit, whereas Eoin has a real patience with it, so he decorates them! He did an awesome “cow jumping over the moon” for Rose’s first cake: