Silly Luck and Paddys Pigeon

August 1, 2014 in Uncategorized by Emma Day

Luck. It’s a funny thing isn’t it. My family seem to get hit by a ton of bad luck, all at once, and when we get a little bit of good luck – that all comes at once too.

People think odd things are lucky too… like having a bird poo on you… that’s meant to be lucky? On holiday in Devon recently, a bird missed me by about a foot. Personally, I’d call THAT lucky!

Or a lucky rabbits foot? Well that’s not very lucky for the poor rabbit now is it?

The number thirteen… how is that lucky for some, but an omen to others?

I’ve lost count of the number of times a black cat has crossed my path, or I’ve let a money spider walk across my hand. I’m not entirely convinced that brought me either luck or fortune.

And the number of hours I sat there as a child, counting the leaves on clovers is ridiculous. I am convinced that four leaf clovers do not exist!

Whilst I remain skeptical and think that luck is purely… luck, and not caused by anything we do as humans, I will still always get excited when something superstitiously lucky happens!

Paddy Power recently launched a new tv advert about luck… featuring the paddy power pigeon, pooping pink goo on lucky ladies! You can see it here:

Paddy Power also created a comical infographic about 7 “lucky buggers”…
Paddy Power Pidgeon

Disclaimer 2

Let’s pretend…

July 30, 2014 in Childhood, Games, Holidays, Parenting, Uncategorized by Emma Day

Let’s pretend…

siblings playing together

I’ve been brought back to my childhood recently, through numerous trips to the park with my girls, because all the kids, still play all the same games that they did twenty years ago. Most commonly, that neverending game, “let’s pretend…” .

There is so much on social media at the moment about how the youth of today don’t get out in the fresh air and rely on their minds alone for entertainment. That we had better upbringings before smart phones and interactive gaming. It’s all doom and gloom, but in the summer time, I think you can really appreciate that that analogy is not entirely true. That children can still appreciate walks, beaches, parks, sports and making games up out of thin air. Despite all the computer games and technology kids have these days, make-believe is still rife. And that makes me smile.

 

Let's pretend...

Games start with “let’s pretend” and the entire game (which can last hours) consists of every sentence starting with the word “pretend…”. Each child acts out their own little daydreams and tells the other children what they are thinking, doing and seeing, until they are united in one big game.

The most common of these (in girls at least) still seems to be “mums and dads”. I remember nobody ever wanted to be the baby, because all you had to do was sit in an imaginary cot and say “goo goo” or pretend to be asleep.

Playground objects become pirate ships, fairy castles, war zones, ponies and shops. Everything you could ever want, is a hands reach away – invisible of course, but if you can imagine it, you can touch it.

It’s funny as an adult, seeing these same games played through different eyes. As a child I could imagine endless scenarios and everything around me became a part of that pretend world. As an adult… You can see nothing there, but what is really there.

Children have incredible imaginations and its so lovely to see how they develop them through play.

 

It’s lovely also, to be jolted back to my own awesome childhood, every now and then.

If kids chose our holiday activities…

July 30, 2014 in Holidays, Travel, Uncategorized by Emma Day

What would holidays be like if our children chose EVERYTHING that we did?

Pretty crazy I would think. At first anyway. Actually it turns out, that kids want a lot of the same things we do. Whilst as responsible parents we can’t say yes to EVERYTHING, it’s great to allow our children to have an input on what we do on holiday.

So no… my darling cherubs, you’re not staying up past midnight every night, or eating ice cream for every meal, but I will make sure our holidays are always fun!

Parkdean Holidays wanted to know exactly what it is that children want from their holidays, so they asked the kids and then produced a guide, by kids, for kids, on how to have an amazing holiday! It’s called “The UK our way” and features everything from beaches and how to make the best sandcastles, to the tastiest regional Ice cream and Fish and chips.

The interactive guide pairs the best locations for each activity and even features maps and local holiday resorts.

Many of the UK’s top tourist attractions are showcased in this guide, from zoos and theme parks, to tank museums, adventure piers and shops. Crabbing, swimming, bike rides, picnics and taking stunning photos that will capture precious family moments in beautiful locations.

The kids have thought of everything and you can see it all here…

In association with Parkdean Holidays

My Sunday Photo

July 27, 2014 in Uncategorized by Emma Day

image

OneDad3Girls

A sports day without tears?

July 25, 2014 in Childhood, Fitness, Health, Parenting, School, Sport, Uncategorized by Emma Day

Sports Day July 2014 (7)Bunny has just finished year two of primary school and as per school tradition, sports day came near to the end of term. We are not a particularly sporty family. Wait, what am I saying? We do NO SPORT AT ALL!

I played rugby back in my school days, until I broke my left wrist in a rather spectacular fashion… which pretty much put me off all sport, except cycling. Then I broke my right arm cycling. I got detention for being so bad at TABLE tennis, that my teacher thought I was taking the mick. In badminton, I got pulled out of class and made to play by myself against a wall for six weeks because I just couldn’t hit the darn thing! In all other sports involving balls, I did the typically girly thing of putting my hands in front of my face, shutting my eyes and whimpering. I was ALWAYS last to be picked for any team. Once it came to leaving school… that was pretty much the end of sport for me.

Hubs decided to get sporty a couple of years ago. He joined a football team and went off for his first session. He was discharged from hospital several hours later, with a broken collarbone which required surgery. His version of sport now involves a large tv screen and a pint.

Bunny has not miraculously inherited a love of sport from further up the gene pool. She doesn’t get it. She’s not a competitive child and sports day usually includes tears.

At sports day, when Bunny was in reception class, she saw me across the field and BAM… tears and sobbing because she wanted a cuddle from mummy!

In year one, Bunny just did NOT want to do any sports. She stropped through most of her races and cried because her friend was mean to her, and because she “HATES sports day”.

So as you can imagine, I approached year two sports day with caution. I dreaded seeing my little beauty cry again. I gave her all the usual reassuring parent advice, including that the most important thing, was to try her best and have fun. I was apprehensive, but she went in with her usual headstrong confidence (which doesn’t normally falter until the nerves kick in).

And I’m pleased to say… that this year, she did not cry once! She almost even enjoyed it. And at one point (until she fell over) she was even winning the sack race! Sports Day July 2014 (54)

So this year’s sports day was a proud mummy moment for me.
Sports Day July 2014 (6)

She did however, cry at the schools Race For Life, because her sign had fallen off her back. Her sign said “I race for… My Mummy”, in her own writing. A kind teacher put it back on for her and she ran her race, whilst talking the hind legs off a donkey to her headmaster. That made me even prouder. She raised £40 for Cancer Research and told me how important that was to her, because of my having Cancer last year.

She’s every bit my mini-me.

Getting your children to brush their teeth

July 22, 2014 in Health by Emma Day

This is a post aimed at getting your children into a good toothcare regime and was not written by this blog’s author.

Getting Your Kids to Brush Their Teeth

 

Children’s teeth can decay more quickly than adults’ do, so it’s very important to get your children used to brushing their teeth as early as possible. However, some children can be reluctant tooth-brushers!

 

Baby teeth

It’s a good idea to begin brushing babies’ teeth as soon as the first tooth appears at about six months. Use a soft babies’ toothbrush and a pea-sized dab of toothpaste: one that contains fluoride and is designed for children aged up to three years. If your child is reluctant at first, persevere: it may help you to reach the back teeth if you gently cradle your child’s head from behind while brushing.

 

All about routine

Let your child brush for themselves as early as possible. Just brush again once they have finished, checking that the back teeth are cleaned properly. An electric toothbrush can speed up this brushing routine. Children should brush their teeth twice a day, in the morning, either before or after breakfast, and last thing before bedtime. Repeat this daily to get them into a good habit.

 

Top tooth brushing tips

1. If your child is reluctant, try and be as enthusiastic about tooth brushing yourself as you can – let your kids watch you cleaning your teeth, and make lots of noise while you’re doing it. If your child sees teeth cleaning as a fun activity, he or she will be keen to join in.

2. Give your child some warning that it’s nearly time to brush their teeth, so that they are prepared for the activity, and use clear but firm language. For example, say “It’s time to clean your teeth now”, rather than ask the question: “Would you like to clean your teeth now?”

3. Go shopping with your child and allow them to choose their own toothbrush. Children’s toothbrushes are made in a range of colourful, character themed designs, such as pirates, mermaids and so on. An electric toothbrush is an excellent idea to help young children clean their teeth properly and is recommended by dentists.  Re-chargeable or battery operated, some have flashing lights, and play a tune, which helps the child to brush their teeth for the recommended length of time.

4. Make tooth brushing as much fun as possible. Try singing a song while your child brushes – it will make the routine activity more like a game.

 

It is vital to create routine for kids brushing their teeth, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun.

I’m going to The Godney Gathering in Glastonbury

July 19, 2014 in Days out, Entertainment, Family, Holidays, Travel, Uncategorized by Emma Day

Today I’m going to The Godney Gathering in Glastonbury and I’m SO EXCITED. Not am I only going to this awesome music festival, but I’m also going to be one of the stage managers.

The legendary “Reef” are headlining the main stage and there will be over 40 acts spread over the five stages.

Even more exciting for me, is that the winner of my battle of the bands event in Cheltenham last year, Emi McDade, is also performing at The Godney Gathering. She’ll be on the Acoustic stage early this evening. Emi has just released her second single, “Just Begun” to itunes last week. Take a listen, her voice is incredible.

To any of you who have no plans today – The Godney Gathering is a family friendly music festival. So family friendly, that under 16′s get in free with a paying adult. There are a few tickets left on the website for £20 or you can get in for £25 on the door. Gates open at 2:30pm this afternoon and the action plays through til just after midnight tonight.

The Godney Gathering is sponsored by Brothers Cider, which will be available at £2.50 from the Brothers Bar. There is also a normal bar and a Farmhouse cider bar too. I shall be staying sober until I’ve finished my duties and Reef take to the main stage!

I’ll blog a post full of pictures after the event. I’m off to don my sexy blue Godney Gathering T-shirt now and grab a Maccy D’s before I head off to the farm!

Godney Gathering 2014 poster

Romeo and Juliet by The National Ballet: Seatwave Review

July 14, 2014 in Days out, Entertainment, Reviews, Travel, Uncategorized by Emma Day

Straight after this year’s Britmums Live conference finished in London, I shot off to the The Royal Albert Hall for the first time in my life, to watch a ballet performance (also a first for me).

Watching a famous ballet, has been on my 30 before 30 list for quite some time. Thanks to two tickets from online ticket booking company, Seatwave , I got to tick that off my list.

I arrived in awe of how beautiful The Royal Albert Hall is; both the exterior and the interiors! What a stunning building. 

Royal Albert Hall

The Royal Albert Hall

Our tickets were for seats in the upper circle – which is rather high up. The view was phenomenal. We were near to the orchestra too, so we could see every single musician playing and the conductor leading them.

Royal Albert Hall interior

I chose to watch Romeo and Juliet, because I know (and love) the story so well. I was worried that if I watched a ballet to which I didn’t know the story, the interpretation may be lost on me. 

The music was incredible. 

Orchestra at Royal Albert Hall

The dancers were also extremely talented, particularly the dancer playing the part of Juliet. She fit the part so well. She was adorable, talented, believable and expressive. The part of the nurse, was also played terrifically. If I’m honest, I do feel that Romeo lacked emotion. Whilst a brilliant dancer, his part was just not convincing for me as Romeo. 

There were two parts in the performance which I felt were dragged on a little too long (but surprisingly NOT the death scene!). One of these was the part where Romeo says goodbye to Juliet, as he is banished to Mantua. This is where the performance lost a little of it’s clarity for me. I know from studying the story during my GCSE’s that Romeo was banished, yet in the performance, it looked as though he had left out of choice.Royal Albert Hall

I didn’t feel moved or emotional at the end of the performance, even though I was expecting to. I cannot help but wonder if this was due to sitting so high up, that the dancers facial expressions weren’t very clear. Despite this, I did thoroughly enjoy watching the show and the whole experience in general. I would go back and watch another ballet. I like that the atmosphere was both sophisticated and relaxed at the same time. 

I’d definitely recommend the theatre, ballet and also Seatwave, for a great grown-up night out.

Royal Albert Hall

 

My Sunday Photo

July 13, 2014 in Blog Hops / Memes / Linkies, Family, Photography, Silent Sunday, Twins, Uncategorized by Emma Day

Siblings

OneDad3Girls

I am a failure

July 2, 2014 in Charity / Awareness, Health, Medical, Radioactive mum, Uncategorized by Emma Day

This post is depressing. It’s about depression. Depression that came out of nowhere and seized my life. It took my soul away and I sit here writing this, feeling just a shadow of my former self. It’s a jumbled collection of bad luck and bad feeling. I apologise to all my readers who enjoy my usual happy upbeat posts. I just have to let it out somewhere.

Since I went to Britmums Live, I feel like a total failure. I feel like there is nothing at all, that I’m good at. I feel like my life is slipping out of my hands and I have no control over anything.

Someone I thought was a close friend, recently decided to question and criticise every single aspect of my life, even parts of my life they’ve never seen or have any understanding of. They made me feel like scum. Lower than scum. It cut me like a knife and I still get upset thinking about it.

Another friend regularly makes snide remarks about how I look. I’m not even sure if she knows she is doing it half the time.

I am a good mum. I’m a really good mum. But I’m pretty sure it is the only thing I am good at. And it is so hard to be a good mum, when all I want to do is curl up into a ball and cry. The kids routines and cuddles are what gets me through each day. They are my beautiful blessings and my saviours.

I am a rubbish housewife. I hate housework. And I think often I’m probably a rubbish wife too. I lose friends as quickly as I make them. I snap at people and push them away, without realising I’m doing it. It’s as though I constantly feel like I’m hurting and I want to pass that pain off onto others. I know that’s wrong. It’s been a long time, since I had a “best friend”, but the one I am closest to, doesn’t seem to want to know me any more.

I’ve not been able to work much lately due to my health problems and I’m still struggling with the grief from my ectopic pregnancy, even though I’m told by many, that I should be over it by now. I have no idea how I managed to listen to the moving keynote speech about miscarriage, by Grenglish, without breaking down. I’ve certainly made up for that lack of tears since I left London.

I’ve been skipping hospital appointments. One with my consultant, to check my Thyroid Cancer hasn’t returned and another for a procedure I have to have, to remove cells (possibly cancerous) after an abnormal smear. I’ve missed six appointments now in total. I’m too scared of the C word, to go to either appointment. I’ve convinced myself that I have cervical cancer, but I can’t face finding out for sure. What if I don’t survive the third time around? I’m no longer the strong fighter I used to be.

Hubs and I are having to downsize on our home (which is only rented anyway), due to the debts we accumulated when I had Cancer. It seems there are 101 obstacles preventing us from moving. We are sitting in a black hole.

At Britmums, I was overwhelmed by how many people came to talk me. And especially when one or two said they felt “starstruck” or that they had “always wanted to meet me”. I’m no star. I’m even a failure at blogging now. I’ve not managed many posts since my Ectopic Pregnancy. I have so much to write, but so little time and when I find the time… I just seem to be tired.

Many people asked me how my #EmmasArmy campaign is going and how the walk went. I am happy to talk about the walk – It was hugely challenging, I did it with a fabulous and inspiring group of people and I’m proud we all achieved it. But on the whole… I feel like my whole idea was a failure. I wanted lots more people involved. I set out to raise £20,000. We aren’t yet up to £3000. I haven’t even made my own personal target of £1000 yet. I feel like I’ve let Cancer Research UK down and that I’ve let many other people down by not achieving anything like my goals. So when people ask me about my fundraising, I just get this sinking feeling in my chest.

I have so many goals, that seem so far into the future that they are unobtainable.

Every day this week, I have driven the school run, late, with tears streaming down my face, trying not to let Bunny see.

I feel completely and utterly alone. Nobody seems to know how to help me.

It’s shocking how much depression can affect your physical well-being. I can’t eat anymore. I feel sick all the time and if I try to eat, I feel worse. I have palpitations and feel like my ordinarily low blood pressure is through the roof. I constantly switch between shivering and sweating, I’m dizzy, I’m weak and I cry all the time.

I’m known for my uplifting views on life, always looking on the bright side and finding the good in everything. I’ve always been a fighter. People call me inspiring. But now, I’m uninspiring. I’m a self-pitying wreck and I hate myself for it.

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