I love cleaning and i’m a bit obsessed with cleaning products in particular at the moment Lavender Zoflora. This is a platform for me to pick up new tips for my own home and to give anyone that needs help with their own, a helping hand. The easier we can make cleaning the better, so hopefully this will help.
Please add yourselves and share any posts you think we might find helpful.
I’m on my “Let’s get rid of this baby weight diet” and up to now i’m doing well if i do say so myself. I’ve lost quite a few pounds now and my clothes are feeling distinctively bigger on me.
I’m sticking to my protein shakes during the day and reasonably low carb meal of an evening , the only thing i will admit to missing is snacks. I do become quite hungry late afternoon and late on in the evening.
Previously the hubby and I would stuff our faces watching telly while we drank copious amounts of sugary coffee (well i did, the hubby goes without). I could easily eat a huge slice of cake as well as a large bar of Dairy Nut to myself, then if i was staying up particularly late more biscuits or even a late night take away on a few occasions, the latter didn’t happen very often but it did happen.
The more i write about my diet, the more i see how i got as fat as i am. I love food (obviously) and although i do love a lot of healthy food such as veggies and salad, i also love all the wrong foods. Pasta, bread (oh i love you bread), cheese (oh i love you too cheese), cake, chocolate, chocolate biscuits, pizza, oat biscuits, Indian food and all the munchies that go with it.
While i do like a wide range of food i tend to stick to the same crap all the time. I’ll have a huge plate of bolognaise and justify the cake and biccies afterwards because i had a massive pile of salad to go with it, not to mention the garlic bread the salad was wedged between. I’m opening my own eyes the more i write, im literally shocked by myself.
Anyway enough of the being down on myself, i have literally done a u turn on my habits, except on Saturday night when i allow myself the evening off after being weighed at tea time. Only then can i have whatever i want to eat and copious amounts of red wine to wash it down with if i feel like it.
Weigh In Day!!!!! That’s me 4th from the front with the “why did i eat that bastard Frey Bentos pie” look on her face. (i dont like Frey Bentos pies by the way but you get what i’m saying).
But i must admit, as the weeks are going by i’m finding it more difficult to enjoy the fabulous tasting shite i used to eat, my body just can’t seem to take it, it literally goes into sheer panic. Last Saturday evening for example i was weighed to find i’d lost a good 5 lbs so i decided a takeaway of tikka burger and chips and a few slices of pizza thrown in, along with some chocolate cookies, a hand full of popcorn and a bottle of red wine would be my treat of the day. Over a few hours i ate and drank it all along with sugary coke, by the time id put the last piece of food into my mouth i literally couldn’t move. That’s weird i used to easily be able to do this.
I was watching a film with my hubby and my eldest son (Trainspotting 2 for anyone interested and it was alright, not as good as the first), All i could do was lie back with my legs up on Anthony like a literal couch potato, King Eddie’s had nothing on me, i felt vile. I was hot, beyond thirsty (more coke thanks) and my stomach was a huge ball that was uncomfortable to say the least.
Me, just not on a couch, i literally was Mrs Potato Head watching a film.
I went to bed about two hours after the film finished and the food had gone, i was still the same my body seemed to go into shock, i felt like if someone squeezed me i’d pop. I lay in bed for a good hour or so just trying to get my greedy, overindulged body comfortable. Throwing in a little panic attack, I think i fell asleep from exhaustion eventually, i couldn’t help but wonder how i used to eat like that? on a regular basis, how do i have panic attacks from just being full? and i think it’s my body’s response to the wear and tear i’m putting on it, it’s telling me to stop, to look after it, it’s my body’s way of telling me that what i’m doing is wrong.
I got up the next day and instead of repeating my usual habit of “oh it’s Monday tomorrow i’ll start then”, i got straight back on it, bottle of water and a protein shake down the neck and i was right back on track, i also felt so much better in myself by doing so. My day actually lifted, i felt in a better mood and my head and body felt a little clearer.
I will still have Saturday nights off, its something i need to do or i won’t stick to my plan throughout the week, and every diet i have ever done has involved me having a night off, it’s just now i will limit myself to a couple of treats instead of a whole weeks worth in one go. I need to remind myself that not everything fits in my mouth and my belly.
I am very proud to announce that I’ve been nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award. This was very unexpected as im a relative newbie, but I’ve certainly enjoyed writing my post and reading posts that other nominees have posted.
Firstly a huge shout out to Teeshares for my nomination, it was and is greatly appreciated, for anyone who hasn’t already checked out their blog on the link above, you won’t be disappointed i promise.
Secondly, as part of the nomination i have to answer 11 questions set for me, so here goes:
1.What made you start your blog
I have 6 children and i have quite a busy life, we have a happy home and share quite a lot of funny times and i always felt like i should be sharing those moments, even if it was just for myself to read back on as the kids got older. I also loved the freedom of being able to write about literally anything i wanted, i had complete freedom and i loved it.
2.What’s your most favourite post you’ve written?
I thin my favourite post I’ve written has to be my Saturday Morning Chaos blog post. Its a recurring situation i find myself in a lot of the time, it literally is chaotic, i wrote the blog when i had not long had my most recent baby and was settling into mummy hood as a mummy of 6, which at first i did struggle with a tiny bit, the remainder of the day i’m writing about was in fact a good day, the chaos i wrote about disappeared as the day went on, and for me it sums our family up and gives me a warm little feeling in my tummy as how lucky i am to have this experience.
3.What are your top 3 hobbies?
First and foremost, writing, closely followed by drawing and lastly reading. All of which i need to be left alone for so i do have to set out a time each day to be able to do this and keep my sanity ha ha.
4.If you were to name one person as your favourite person, who would they be AND WHY?
My favourite person is my husband Anthony. I couldn’t say why but since the day we met I’ve never tired of his company. He’s my go to person for literally EVERYTHING!!!!! We spent a period of time as friends and i think that built the foundation to our relationship, we do everything together. From changing my dressing after our babies births to checking my piles (no i’m not joking) he does anything i ask him to.
Although the days of him writing me love notes and poetry just because he felt like it are no more, he can be incredibly romantic and thoughtful. He knows me better than anybody and has seen every side to me possible, good and bad, and he’s never got up and ran away.
He took on my eldest 3 children as his own (i was married previously) and he’s never treated any of them differently to his own biological children and i will always be grateful for that.
There are many sides to Anthony and i’m lucky to say i’m the person who can say they’ve seen them all. He’s my best friend and we are both very passionate about each other, within minutes of our first ever conversation we both agreed we felt like we had known each other forever and hopefully we are one of the lucky ones and our “old school” relationship will forever remain like that.
5.What’s your favourite colour?
I have a few but i’d probably say clothing wise, black, black and more black with a splash of red for good measure. For my home i would say grey, cream and any other pastel colours that take my fancy at the time.
6.If you were to eat one food item for the rest of your life, what would that be?
Buttered Toast, Thick white bread, would never tire of it.
7.Who did you look up to growing up, and why?
Marilyn Monroe (apart from the being dead bit), i thought she was beautiful, the mystery surrounding her death mesmerised me and still does to this day. She lived in an era i would kill to go back in time to, she was so glamorous and literally lit up a room. I just thought she was timeless and i loved that about her, my obsession grew and grew and even at 35 years old i’m still transfixed on her life story and the red lipstick!!!!.
8.What’s your biggest wish in life?
To have a long, happy, healthy life and watch my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren grow up into beautiful people with wonderful lives.
9. Do you believe in love at first sight?
Yes totally. I fell in love with my husband before i’d even met him (we spoke on the phone for 3 weeks before eventually meeting up) and i told him on our first date that i loved him and was going to marry him. I wasn’t wrong!!!!!!
10. What are you most proud of in your life?
My children and the life I’ve built for them.
11.What’s been your favourite holiday destination so far?
Id say Florida, in my late teens my mum and dad took me there twice and the second time i was about to turn 18 and it was the last family holiday we had where it was just the three of us (i’m an only child).
So there are may questions answered, all that’s left to do now is nominate 11 fabulous blogs, which you will find below, click the links and have a good mooch, lets show them as much support as we can:
For all you fabulous bloggers that i’ve nominated, here are my 11 questions to you:
Other than blogging, what do you spend your day doing?
What is your favourite blogger?
Who inspires you in life?
3 desert Island foods?
What is your best trait?
What is your worst?
What perks you up on a bad day?
What item could you not live without in life?
Who puts the biggest smile on your face?
Whats your signature dish if you are cooking for friends and family?
Whats your biggest dream for the future?
Now for the 4 very simple rules:
Thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you (that would be me).
Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.
That’s it, simple as!!!! hope you all enjoy taking part, i’m really looking forward to all the replies. Please feel free to comment, all comments are welcome (apart from nasty ones but i’m sure we won’t have any of those!!!!)
As a mum of 6, things can get quite hectic at times, today has been no exception if im honest. I dont tend to shout at my children very often but today called for a very stern telling off from me in the kitchen whilst three of the kids shouted and bickered at each other relentlessly for a continuous hour in the next room. Cue early bed times and a large deep breath from me and the hubby and peace was restored, my quiet chilled house was back to its usual self.
Just yesterday my lovely neighbour told me you would never think we had so many people in our house, she wouldn’t have said the same had she been here this evening. Anyway as a mum of more than a few kids, i do get asked a lot, mostly by other parents, how we cope. My answer is always the same, organisation!!!! being organised is a must or those little buggers will run rings around you. You don’t get chance to take your eye off that ball or all hell breaks loose.
Having household rules does help, it gives the older kids clear instructions what they need to do and the little ones usually love having their own little pieces of responsibility and take their roles VERY seriously. My 2 year old Nell loves her job as chief nappy getter, its her job when its time to change bums to get the nappies (even if i end up with 6 nappies on my knee for just 1 child, at least she’s trying).
A tidy house is a must, or at least as tidy as you can get it, i am one of those really sad people that proclaim “a tidy house is a tidy mind” but this is so true and i inflict this on my husband and children practically daily because i believe it so much. I’m also a firm believer that everything has a place, keep those things in those places and nothing ever goes missing (except socks, socks don’t count, they have a mind of their own). Also when you have a tidy home, you actually spend less time tidying on a daily basis because there is less to do, that way you have more time to have a time out for yourself, a quick shower or a cheeky glass of wine before tea, if this keeps you sane then do it.
Me and the hubby take out an hour together every afternoon once the older kids get home from school, we just sit with a brew and a biscuit completely on our own, its a no kids allowed area for just that half hour or an hour of the day. Us time is an important part of family life, we dedicate every waking moment to our kids and i think its only fair to have that time together just the two of you to sit and enjoy each others company, to just be Laura and Anthony, not just mummy and daddy. We don’t go out and we are not massive drinkers but we do love cooking together and listening to music while we chat away about anything and everything, if we do feel like having a drink we do and its bliss, it keeps the romance alive in our relationship and it gives us chance to have conversations that dont involve choo choo’s, pooh or Kylie Jenner.
Mummy and Daddy
Another survival tip is sharing your time individually with each of your children. Keeping an eye on whats hot and whats not and showing an interest in what your child is interested in is also a huge help. We all use social media and that can give us all the answers we need. Taking time out with each child makes them feel more secure and equal to their brothers and sisters, none of them are left out and it shows in their behaviour. A well behaved child is so much easier to deal with that goes without saying, they all have their moments, don’t we all but if we can get them happy and smiling at least for the most part then things are good and productive.
Mummy and Ollie
Other than behaviours there is a list of items that will always come in handy when you have a big family, items that can stop a fight in 2 seconds flat, stop a runny nose, make you look less Night of the living dead and more yummy mummy, make a cut knee feel better instantly or just give the kids something to do on a sunny day when they won’t get from under your feet while you put the washing out.
Here’s a few of my fail proof items:
Liquid eyeliner, makes your eyes look brighter after 2 hours sleep with your teething baby, can also double up as a mascara to dye your eyelashes and literally takes 2 seconds to slap on, if the eyeliner goes slightly skew wiff you can just pretend your starting a new trend and wear it with pride.
A massive tub of Aqueous cream, this big tub is my go to “magic cream” when one of the kids has a catastrophic accident such as a grazed knee!!! quick splodge on they think it takes the pain away and off they run. This also doubles up as a moisturiser for your face on those dull skin days, as well as a good bum cream when the hubby has ring sting from his piles (because noone else has ever had piles as bad as his!!!!) or if the baby’s bum is looking a bit pink, it is quite literally “Magic”.
A deck of cards, hidden in the crap drawer (we all have one), when the kids are stuck in on a rainy day and all seem to want to use the living room as their squat but refuse point blank to get on, the pack of cards get dished out and off they go to play as many games of 21 or snap as they can until either the tea is ready or i threaten to lock them out in the garden. If all else fails just throw the whole packet up in the air and tell them whoever gets the most can pick the next programme to watch, its a long shot but it does usually work.
Plastic cups, plastic picnic cups are fantastic inventions, they can be used for juice, ice cream, jelly you name it but the one thing i use them for that always keep my littlest ones entertained is filling the sink with warm water and along with a couple of small pans, let them splash until their hearts content. Bit of advice id put a towel on the floor and either side of the sink because it can end up like a tsunami.
Bubbles and a bubble machine, my god every parent should be given these before they take their little angels home from the hospital when they’re first born. All kids of all ages bloody love bubbles, they love blowing them, catching them, chasing them and just running stir crazy all over the place with them. They are fabulous for cheering everyone up and better still are cheap as chips, i paid £2.99 for a fish that blows bubbles from B&M and a GIANT bottle of bubble solution from Home and Bargains for 99p, worth every penny and even when they run out, it doesn’t break the bank to replace the solution.
Baby Wipes, even for those who’s children no longer need wet wipes they are a staple part of every families cupboards in my opinion, they clean kids, animals, work tops, sinks, windows, doors the list goes on and on. There is hardly anything you can’t use them for, when the kids have a cold i use them so they don’t get sore on their little noses, i use them for making my sinks sparkle, i use them to clean my cooker, washing machine etc and they all come up brilliantly. Although putting wipes down the toilet is not recommended, they do come in handy for those instances where we have ran out of toilet roll, as we regularly do in our house.
A fabulous lipstick or lip gloss, the bolder the better. My first choice is ALWAYS red, red, red and more red i just adore it. I can have no make up on whatsoever and a quick splash of bright red gloss can make me feel like i have my whole face on, 30 seconds and its on, just remember to keep checking the teeth because that bugger literally gets everywhere!!! The colour can be whatever suits you, but if it can make us feel glam even just while we pop the shops or do the school run, why not give it a try and and the way i see it if all else fails and i still look like shit it will at least distract attention from the rest of my gob.
The list goes on and on with survival tips for being a mummy or daddy, im no expert, im not proclaiming all my tips will work for you and your family, but they work for mine. We don’t do too bad and me and the hubby are pretty proud how well we run our ship, our kids have their moments as we as adults do, but on the whole we are a happy household, with lots of adventures to be had.
I’ve worn make up since i was roughly 14 years old. i didn’t have to dabble in my mums make up bag she came to me and asked would i like some make up, i was fortunate enough that she took me straight to the local Clinique counter to have my make up done and have the basics bought for me. Christmas fast approached and my presents were literally everything i could get my hands on from Clinique.
Since then it still remains my all time favourite brands and has never failed me, from make up to skin care products ive literally tried everything they had to offer. At 35 with my 36th lurking in the nearish future my make up bag currently stocks at least a few of Cliniqes products along with added Max Factor and Mac, unfortunately the contents only leave the bag a couple of times a week at best.
As a mummy of 6 beautiful children my time is firmly focused on them and keeping my house neat and tidy (although if you visit unannounced you will most definitely find one or two children’s toys strewn across my living room and a random shoe most likely sat at the top of my stairs).
On a general day my cleaning and tidying will start literally from the moment i put my feet on the floor, i quickly make the beds and clear up the remnants of whatever the kids have been playing with that morning (usually something they shouldn’t like my sewing kits). Ill brush my teeth and have a wash/shower and pull on either a clean pair of pj’s or my staple black leggings and some sort of black t shirt, i keep my regular clothes for the days im out so the bog standard black comfy stuff always makes an appearance. The hair gets a quick brush and literally thrown in a knot on the top of my head, if im feeling adventurous ill sling a hair band or head scarf around for a bit of colour and im good to go.
Bog standard mummy
Its not that i have no desire to look nice every day, i do, the compulsion is still there from before i had kids, the days when i washed and straightened my hair every single day, the slap was put on in full, the nails were always painted and the roots were always touched up. I managed this until baby number 4, when finally i succumbed to comfort rather than beauty.
Before baby number 4
When i do make the effort to put my face on i do tend to do it in full depending on the look im going for, i love red lipstick and not only does it make teeth look whiter it also makes your lips look fuller, (always a good idea to entice the hubby for a cheeky smooch when the kids aren’t looking). Its times when im wearing my make up that i will volunteer to have pictures taken with the hubby or the kids. This isn’t the only time i have my picture taken but in as far as posting it on social media for all the world to see.
Red lipstick is my first love
My husband loves me with or without make up but he is partial to no make up at all so has a tendency to take photographs of me when he sees me at my best, which for me is usually my worst. I can be rolling around on the floor with the kids or in the middle of doing the dishes when i feel an arm around my waist and a phone in front of my face, my very clean, very bare face, hair looking like a burst mattress wearing an old t shirt that i love to sleep in that belonged to my dad. I hate these types of photographs im there in all my glory for everyone to see, every bump, every blemish, the scar that’s so prominent on my forehead without make up, i literally loath them. I will sit and dissect each little mark, pore etc, the hubby gets told in no uncertain terms to delete them, i know he doesn’t delete them but he knows his life wont be worth living if he shows anyone.
I make a point of only posting what i class as the reasonable photos, i get likes on my social media and for some reason it makes me all the more aware of how i look, the dreaded confirmation that someone has actually looked at my mush, its very rare you will find me alone on the pictures, there’s always a small child or my hubby for company.
“you look different on your Facebook pictures” is something i have heard in the past, not sure whether to take offence i wonder what to make of that comment, are they saying i merely look a bit happier or brighter, or is it in fact i look alright on Facebook in reality im an ugly bitch who needs a bag over her head, i honestly don’t know.
I do pride myself on being very good at hiding a multitude of sins with make up, i can make myself look happier, more alert, thinner, more toned, tanned you name it i can do it, ive picked up many tricks of the trade over the years and i use them to my advantage given half the time. But for the most part, quite frankly i just cant be arsed!!!!! i love having a clean and tidy home, i love spending time with my kids and my husband i love sewing and drawing and talking to my friends, i love my neighbours coming around for a brew or something to eat and while id like to say i do all this with a full face on and wearing my best clothes, there simply just isn’t the time and something has to give.
So i will go on inflicting my unmade mug on the world, my leggings that could do with being a bit less slack on the bum and my t shirts that sometimes cling too much to my post natal, wobbly belly, im a mummy and im happy with that so what if ive chipped my toe nail polish or my fake nails need a bit of TLC, this doesn’t make me a bad person this makes me human, a loving wife, a good friend and yes sometimes a scummy mummy but nevertheless ill do it and ill make sure i’ll do it while grabbing mummy hood by the balls!!!!!!
Lying in bed in a very rare deep sleep I’m woken by the sound of my number three quietly coming into my bedroom. “Muuuum the babies are in the spare room throwing dads tools around” Great!!!!!!! 5am even better!!!!!!
The hubby gets up, crisis averted. Everything easily tidied up, the last time the gruesome twosome got up to their dastardly deed they painted my bathroom floor as well as the boys newly built castle/fort bunk beds.
Husband and kids all settled back to bed the house fell quiet for all of 20 seconds, the baby was obviously lulling me into a false sense of security and started to wiggle and squirm,
OK let’s get her fed then I might catch an extra hour or so, where’s her bottle. There was a pre made bottle by my bed. Had I fed her and completely erased it from my memory, had I been in that deep a sleep the husband woken and fed her (very unlikely it’s like waking the dead waking that bugger up). Then there it lay, the evidence, on my bedroom floor a tiny pink bottle lid off completely empty. One of my little tinkers had snuck in like a silent assassin and drank the evidence, quietly polishing the milk off and sneaking back out quiet as a mouse without waking a single person in the house.
Luckily the baby settled with her dummy, even she couldn’t muster the energy to actually wake herself up, at twelve weeks old even she knew it was going to be one of those days.
I was woken approximately an hour later “muuuuum the babies have painted the bathroom” with what?!?!?!? Where do they find these things?!?!?!? We checked on them they were asleep, when did they wake up?!?!?! How did they get past us all?!?!?!?! My questions went unanswered when I saw my pristinely white bathroom suit with grey paint splodges all over it. Luckily a packet of baby wipes and some elbow grease later it was back to normal although the same can’t be said of my shower curtain.
The whole house was now awake. The husband had to go out to buy more baby milk so I was left with “muuuum he’s just done this” “mum can I have some wewtabix” “mum she’s just called me Olga” “muuuuum” “mum” “mummy” “mamma” “LA LA LA” “mum can I have a drink” “ding ding ding mummy I jumping” (yes on my newly changed bed I’d literally just made) “mamma pooooood” “mum I’ve got bad blood” “mum can I hit Oliver” oh my Christ deep breaths I’m going to EXPLOOOOOOOODE.
“WHATS GOING ON” OH thank you dear lord, the hubby is back. Everything stops. Everyone literally freezes, daddy is here!!!!!
Daddy can stop the kids in their tracks within a split second, they stand up take notice (highly likely because they all know he’s their main dealer, their Sweetie dealer, late night stay up dealer, the one who will barter with them to meet in the middle who sneaks them biscuits if they play by the rules) quite clearly I don’t have the same authority.
Peace is restored, I’m casually lying in bed feeding the baby, the kids are all getting dressed (in a fashion) and the hubby is boiling the kettle. I love days like these, when the chaos of first thing disappear and calm and peaceful is the atmosphere for the rest of the morning. I’m not mentioning what the afternoon may bring because that could be a very different story, but for the time being I relax into a tranquility that may not last very long but it’s here for the moment at least.