Advent-ageous Christmas makes (boom, boom)

So, from the end of Nov to the 24th of Dec (ahem), I’m going to be hosting a small blog party of makes from my friends of blogland. Come by each day to see a new project and find a new friend. Most of these ladies are new to regular blogging so it’ll be nice to send them some new friends to stop by their online homes. Consider this your 2 week warning – awesomeness incoming!

2 years ago today

Toby on the move, originally uploaded by RellyAB.

You were still a tiny toddler, only just on your feet, walking confidently. I was just getting used to you being my boy and not my baby.

Now you are a big brother, independent, wearing pants, brushing your teeth, finding jokes funny, getting tall and long-legged and you seem so so much bigger than in this photo.

Love you.

It’s funny isn’t it



…how we spend all day ferrying the kids and working and running from here and there but it only takes one photo like this, that you took on a cold beach, on a day visiting my great aunt, that reminds me of all the reasons I love you. Only love makes a cold beach in November the best place on Earth to be.

Everything is better with Ninjas

Ninja Parade Slips Through Town Unnoticed Once Again

Paul and I were discussing various collective nouns the other day. He informed me there had been a vote on the internet and the collective noun for ninjas was ‘a seemingly empty room of ninjas’. Internet, I Less Than Three You! <3 <3 <3

A gift

Thing1 and Thing2

Thing1 and Thing2

Capturing one kid in shot, looking at the camera and smiling is pretty tricky. Getting two is nothing short of a gift from the universe! I’m lucky that my boys seems to love each other’s company so much.

If wishes were dishes …

by welovepandas

by welovepandas

… I’d have about as many as are stacked by my sink right now.

It suddenly hit me over the weekend what a huge change has happened to me since the beginning of June. Obviously, we had Thing 2 which was never going to be a minor deviation from the norm but then our house was flooded, I lived with my parents and the kids for a month, I came back and my business exploded (in a good way! :), we had to settle into a new house, unpack. Just a lot of stuff to be dealing with.

And I thought I was coping with it all alright but in reality I think I’ve just been ignoring it. Thinking I’d get around to processing all the changes, unpack all the boxes, deal with all the inquiries and I haven’t really. Keeping with the crockery analogy, I have too many plates spinning and all too important to drop any. I guess I’m going to have to choose which plates to take off the sticks.

From now on:
I’ve got a cleaner but I’m also going to get my ironing done.
I’m going to keep tighter control on my schedule and projects.
I’m going to sort out my craft supplies and unpack them all so I can actually have some making time. I’ve missed it so much and usually my best work ideas come when I’m doing something completely different.
I’d like to make time to exercise. I’m doing ballet and tracking with my pedometer but I could be doing a lot more at home.
I’m going to keep a faithful record of my tasks with Omnifocus (my productivity tool of choice).
I’m going to plan a super rad 30th birthday party.

On the train home from That London

Today was a rare day out for me meeting with a client in That London. I read today’s prompt about lists and immediately thought of my todo list. I’m not even going to start on that here. It can be summed up by the fact I have two small children, a fulltime freelance business and about a dozen hobbies and two books in draft. Nothing like spreading yourself too thin, hmm?

So, let’s keep this brief. What’s on my plate?

Listening: right at the moment I’m listening to Departures by Aozu + Cap to Bin, a J-pop song from my favourite Japanese seiyuus (voice over artists). I understand roughly a quarter of it but it is super fun pop :)

Reading: I have a good few books on the go, mostly work related, but my fun book is :59 seconds, a book that debunks a lot of self-help junk with the help of ‘proper’ science (peer-reviewed journal papers and large-scale trials and so on.)

Watching: I barely have the chance to watch anything, but I have Prince of Tennis anime on my computer and have just ordered a lot of anime to watch with my kids this weekend.

Playing: Professor Layton and Pandora’s Box. My maths is as rubbish as ever but I rock the logic puzzles!

Eating: the last thing I ate was a Cinnabon roll. Naughty me. I would kill for a can of coke too. I really hope the lady with the trolley makes it to my carriage soon.

Tonight I am: probably rueing the lack of work I have done today. Still, I did go pick up some inspirational copy from howies in the form of their catalogue. Not all bad!

10 random things about me right now

1) My hair really needs a wash after I had a lovely, but oily, scalp massage as part of a facial yesterday.

2)I start adult ballet today. That really is random because I am not a graceful person but I need to build up my back strength after my last pregnancy (8lb 13oz, hung on a 5ft 3″ frame is not comfortable).

3)I am moderately obsessed with Superdry clothing, Agatha Christie, Japanese language studies, Professor Layton, Tennis no Oujisama, Ace Attorney, my iphone, toy cameras, yellow and grey together.

4) I am a web content writer and content strategist and I really enjoy it.

5) I flew on a plane on my own last week, which was a big deal for me as I used to be terrified of flying.

6) I have been listening to a lot of Tim Minchin’s stuff recently.

7) I am currently playing Professor Layton and Pandora’s box. Next up is Another Code and Kingdom Hearts 365/2. I must make a dent in Little Big Planet too and Monkey Island is on my hit list as well. I love games.

8) Last night I made a sausage and lentil casserole for dinner.

9)I have bought some Christmas presents already, which is unheard of for me. Usually, if it doesn’t come by Amazon one-day delivery you can’t have it.

10)I haven’t yet had a cup of tea this morning. Shocking! I am something of a tea addict. My favourite at the moment comes from Jame Oliver’s Recipease shop and is about £20 a caddy. I savour it!

My small sons, let me show you dem.

Apologies for the cheezburger style title (I am a undying lolcat fan, and Ben Huh is my secret internet boyfriend) but I want to tell you about my small sons. That’s the problem. I want to very much indeed but it seems to be very frowned upon to lay out too many details on the internet for fear of the paedo around the corner. But I decided right when Thing 1 was born I wouldn’t live in fear of what might be and would instead share my children with the world (even if the world wasn’t that bothered, actually).

I refer to them as Thing 1 and Thing 2 but that is purely for my amusement. Thing 1 is Toby, he is nearly 3 and a half, and an absolute smudge of cute wrapped up in attitude. A Threenager, through and through. Thing 2 is Casper, he is very nearly 5 months and a smudge of cute wrapped up in a sunny outlook. I have been blessed with two easy, happy-go-lucky babies (bar the fact both of them have been Olympic standard upchuckers from birth) which has made them very easy to love and dote on. They are, I am moderately ashamed to say, spoiled rotten but they are also loved and adored by everyone who meets them which makes me a very happy and proud mama.

The amount of scrapbooking I have done since being pregnant with Casper is, oooh, nil? I actually barely remember to take pictures or video but periodically I get out my camera and take some shots, and upload them to flickr. I look forward to scrapping them in the future, hopefully somewhere after pairing them off and before grandchildren, and then I really will be able to show them off to the world.

But know this, it isn’t fear that keeps me from posting photos up. It’s the fact I have two small sons and only 24 hours in the day.

The path to Hell are paved with them.

I have good intentions. You know the sort of things. This year I’m going to make everyone’s Christmas presents. I’m going to remember to take photos. I’m going to stop getting so exasperated when Thing 1 decides he can’t possibly put socks on without assistance or Thing 2 thinks I haven’t quite enough laundry and a top, vest and sock soaking nappy leak is required. I’m not going to roll my eyes when the bank asks me for security information and I inform them for the 100th time that I don’t hand them out over the phone and they can just fecking well write to me. I will stop subsisting on substandard subsistence. I will stop drinking wine before a) the bottom of the bottle or b) I can’t say ‘subsisting on substandard subsistence’.

And I’m going to blog. Everyday, throughout November.

Because life is going by too fast now. I’m getting older. Days are no longer the Kidland 500 hour marathons they were. Weekends rush by. Thing 2 is five months old; I feel like I blinked and missed it. I don’t want to forget what my children were like when they were tiny. I don’t want to forget Thing 1 being so excited about a kazoo in a party bag, or when he genuinely thought Farmer Christmas came with the Baby Jesus in a stable with an ox and ass, or the misery of potty training (actually, scrub that last one). Thing 2 is nearly sitting up and I know if I take my eye off him he’ll be up and walking and arguing that he brushed his teeth yesterday already just like his big brother.

So, this really is a Good Intention. The best sort of intention. A month or remembering the little things. Or in my case, the little Things.