19

Pictures: What You See vs The Reality

  1. PhotoGrid_1437378558969 (2)A family sitting closely together, all looking into the camera. This photo makes me wonder ‘why can’t we ever have a family photo’. Why can’t we all be looking at the camera, with big loving smiles. Just once. The fact is, we have very young children who find the thought of a camera very, very dull. Why would they want to look at it. [The Reality Of The Picture] Don’t worry this family we’re wishing was ours, has a secret they don’t want their social media friends to see. They secretly paid a stranger to not only take the picture but shout ‘ROAR, I’m a dinosaur!‘ In the hopes their children will smile, maybe even laugh, or just look in that general direction.
  2. A selfie of a mum looking gorgeous. I occasionally take a selfie, not necessarily to put on Instagram for all to see but because sometimes, my hair isn’t a mess, my make-up is ‘on fleek’ *chuckles*, my eyes aren’t bloodshot and I’ve managed to hide those bags drooping half way down my face. Other mum selfies make me think ‘wow, how does she manage to look so perfect, while holding down a job and three children?‘ I can barely manage two. [The Reality Of The Picture] Look closer and in a reflection of a mirror or in the background, you’ll see the toddler drawing on the wall. *calls for eyes in back of head* It’s rare for selfies to go below the neckline. When you’re a mum, this is because you have a 3 day old sick stain on your cardigan, but you really don’t give a shit. You also have a stain on your top from those food jars (full of stain, not food) that you swore you would never feed your baby. You also have evidence attached to your jeans that you’ve cheated on your ‘diet’, this is in the form of chocolate, melted onto your thigh.
  3. APhotoGrid_1437378669817 (2) picture of your baby with a huge two-toothed grin. I love pictures of smiling babies. Babies smile with ease when it comes to photos. Toddlers are hard work. You have to be swift with your picture-taking in the hopes of catching your toddler smiling. Mums are all addicts at taking pictures of their children (dads too) we don’t want to miss a thing! A single thing. Including their first big bogey. [The Reality Of The Picture] The baby has cried for a solid hour, until you trip on that sodding cable you keep meaning to put away. Big smile *grabs camera*. Sure, she’s cried all morning, but she’s smiling now. That’s how I want everyone to think of her.
  4. A blurry photo which celebrates your childs ‘first steps’ [The Reality Of The Picture] Their ‘first steps’ we’re in all honesty, nearly a week ago. But by the time your camera has decided whether it wants to load, or not. They’ve fallen down. *throws phone against wall*.
  5. A photo of a very healthy lunch. Consisting of salad leaves, cucumber, avocado, onion and there’s normally a boiled egg thrown in there somewhere. Caption usually reads ‘going green’ or ‘delicious healthy lunch’. Whoever says something like that is ‘delicious’ has just proved they are capable of lying. [The Reality Of The Picture] This salad is either put back in the fridge and thrown away at a later date, while you eat some soup and bread. Or the salad is eaten and you feel hunger shortly after, cue fishfinger sandwich.
  6. A pregnancy photo to capture your bump moment, to show off how proud you are of the baby you’re growing. [The Reality Of The Picture] You’re sweating, you’re tired, your thighs are chafing and you need cereal RIGHT NOW! You may have just peed yourself too, when you sneezed. This happens, so I hear.
  7. PhotoGrid_1437507483254Your morning cup of tea in your favourite mug. [The Reality Of The Picture] This one, for me, is to let everyone know YES, I’m not shitting you, 3h does mean three hours ago, making it 5am!
  8. A quick evening snap of a full glass of wine, set in front of a vase of flowers or something pretty [The Reality Of The Picture] This is not your first glass now, lets be honest. You also took this photo before 6pm, which means you broke your ‘wine after 6‘ rule. But you posted the photo at 7pm so you seem like you ‘have it together’. PS it’s also a Tuesday, you broke another rule of ‘only one glass mid-week’. But you deserve it, good for you.

The power of social media amazes me. We always see photos of happy families, loved up couples and other ‘perfect’ life moments. That’s then how we think of them. We don’t want to share those stressful and upsetting moments, just as much as we don’t want to see them. We want to share the smiles, laughs and happy times. But if you see a photo of any of the above, you know what’s really going on.

PhotoGrid_1437507547221

Above is an example of a toddler resisting ‘smile for the camera’

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12

Karma Attacks When You Feel Smug

Yesterday I ordered our new double stroller and as it happens I could collect it in store the same day. Bonus. Only problem is, none of the stores near us would be able to have it ready for collection. The only ‘nearby‘ available store was a quite a drive, to where we used to live. ‘Sod it’, needs must and all that. I worked the timings out perfectly, naps on the way *praying no toddler travel sickness. We had planned to eat at my in-laws that evening, again, timing it all perfectly. Even a visit to the supermarket on the way. The supermarket visit, slight disaster, hilarious according to others. I’ll save that for another day, I’m still recovering.

The drive there went swimmingly. I felt smug. No crying children, no sick, no continuous stops to hold the baby only to realise she doesn’t want to be held! Arrive at the store, with my order number and a smile from ear to ear. Things like this make me really excited. I know I’m not the only parent that gets excited about a new purchase such as a stroller, also a dishwasher now. High five to that! So, I’m at the counter and they have no order number for the stroller. I thought ‘bloody typical, it always goes wrong if I’ve had a hand in it’. Toddler is now running riot around Argos. While I’m mid-speech with the shop-assistant I have to occasionally shout ‘don’t touch that, come here please, I have biscuits!‘. At one point I forgot to tone down my voice when I carried on the conversation and continued to shout at the shop-assistant, a piece of me died inside. Then guess what? I was in the wrong store. Now that was funny, that was just bloody hilarious. I’m hysterically laughing in my head. So I’ve just suffered through the traffic, battled with my old buggy, to walk the 10 steps into the shop while the toddler is taking advantage of every unmanned toy. And I needn’t have bothered. Because it was the wrong shitting shop anyway.

I take ownership of this. Unfortunately I have no-one to blame here, but myself. I forgot this city were lucky enough to have two Argos stores and I chose to drive to the furthest one away. On the other side of the city, through the worst part of traffic. When I remember my journey in, I actually drive past the correct Argos. Right past it.

Hanging my head in shame *embarrassment, I leave and head to the in-laws ‘we can pick it up on the way home’ everyone says. If I’m honest I’m only really annoyed because I wanted to play with the new stroller *sulks.

Argos_Extra_-_geograph_org_uk_-_973872It’s time to leave to pick up the stroller, we avoid all traffic and head to the correct Argos. Mr Firstooth appears with the big box and I’m excited to test it, because surely one child will refuse to sleep tonight. As we leave Argos and start our lengthy journey home. I have that smug feeling again. Baby is sleeping and toddler is singing with me to music. Someone slap me when I feel smug, it ruins everything. I’m driving away, the toddler and I are singing, he’s demonstrating his best car seat dance moves. Impressive. (Just going to point out Mr Firstooth is driving separately as he met us after he had finished work, luckily) Toddler decides he’s bored of being in the car and starts the whinge and arch his back. Does he feel sick? Do I pull over? We’re so close, but so far. Shit, what do I do? Carry on. He whinges intermittently between his dancing and singing. Until we get about fifteen minutes from home. Full blown freak out alert. I’m refusing to stop because we’re so close. Baby is awake. Baby is now crying. I turn the music up to calm them down *(drown out the noise). Now all of a sudden, at every. Single. Turning. A car will hastily pull out on me like they’re about to race off from a subsequent Police chase. But no, pulls out like their life depends on it, then continues to drive 25mph. I’m not exaggerating. Why now? Why me? Screaming in my head along with hysterical laughter. Car then turns off and frees me. Until at the next turning another car did the exact same. You just couldn’t make this stuff up. I’m stuck behind a mock of the phrase ‘Sunday driver’ while both children are screaming and crying to a pitch close to ear-drum bursting.

We finally arrive home and I rush around getting all children out and calming them with lots of cuddles and knee-bouncing. I realise I’m desperate for the loo now. Kids are hastily handed over to Mr Firstooth while I rush inside. Only to find a huge pile of cat sick sitting there. Cake is now officially iced. I just want to say, our cat, in the 3 years she’s resided with us, has never been sick. Holds head in hands.

The rest of the evening (after children both went to sleep like angels) needless to say, was spent cleaning the cat sick and playing with our new stroller. All worth it. I even did a test run with teddies.

 

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33

Before Children vs After Children

  1. We laid in until 10am like lazy bastards and when we dragged ourselves downstairs we could enjoy a hot beverage vs Being in bed past 7.15am is now considered a lay-in. Whilst juggling breakfasts and food throwing, any hot (turned cold) beverage we have, has to be microwaved twice before the first sip
  2. A late night out of choice because we were enjoying wine and laughing loudly or dare I say, in a restaurant enjoying a long leisurely meal vs A late night because one of the children (sometimes both of them) refuse to go to bed without a fight and evenings have to be spent tip-toeing around the house avoiding every creaky stair and talking is kept to a whisper. They still wake up.
  3. We used to sleep vs Never. Sleeping. Again.
  4. Your social life was once a happening thing vs A social scene consisting mainly of Whatsapps to friends with pictures of your children. Sorry guys. Did you all get the one I sent today? Plus playdates with friends. My favourite kind of dates. Children happy. Mums swapping stories *gossiping.
  5. Going to a restaurant as a couple, what did we even talk about back then? I remember it was peaceful vs Visiting a restaurant and eating the food as quickly as humanly possible. Ordering everything on the menu the toddler mildly likes so he is distracted by a tasty offering of food. Toddler eats none of the food and chooses to dance on the table instead. Bruno Mars style. Whilst the baby is crying loudly and everyone is staring. Conversation consisting of ‘here I’ll have her while you eat your chicken’. Not to mention we’re paying for this privilege.
  6. You could eat anything you wanted vs Your food is never your food. Never again. If you’re eating it, they will want it.
  7. Leaving the house took a matter of minutes whilst we threw on our shoes and our biggest smiles vs Taking over an hour to leave the house due to numerous nappy changes and one that’s managed to leak through every sodding layer. Walking out of the door sweating and huffing juggling children, car seats, bags and Teddy. Shit, don’t forget Teddy!
  8. I used to work a 9 to 5 job, lunch breaks, adult chat and hot drinks included vs I now work a 24/7 job lunch is an on-the-go occurrence, I still have a boss. Knee-high he’s known as. Park visits and crying (me, hiding in the wardrobe with wine) is also part of the job description.
  9. All of our clothes would be clean, fresh and possibly even ironed (just kidding, I hate ironing) we could even afford to buy new clothes on a regular basis, should the unthinkable happen and something stain or tear vs Leaving the house in something the baby has just been sick on and not even caring because we’ve successfully left the house. Using Our leggings as a kitchen towel, every spill or food residue ends up wiped down our legs. Always wearing leggings because everything pre-children won’t go past my knees! Wearing the same outfit on rotation because the luxury of buying anything new is a distant memory, meaning some things are ripped and stained but it fits. We always seem to find money to splash on regular new clothes for the children. Funny that.
  10. It used to be just us two vs Being the very proud owners of this crazy pairIMG_20150707_100025

I can remember my life before the whirlwind of children but I can’t imagine life without them. They’re brilliant.

 

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10

What You Argue About Once You Have Children

These tiny perfect little people test our patience, make us tired night feeds yuck, make us suffer through endless amounts of Disney and Peppa Pig, refuse to eat their meals we lovingly prepared for them and the rest! All this adds up to very stressed parents. Who do we take it out on? Each other of course! We never argued before we had children. Bickered, yes. Never argued.

  1. IMG_1526I get up 4 times in the night one of which was an hour and he sleeps through it all. How can he sleep through a screaming baby and me occasionally kicking him in the shins. Then he continues to wake up in the morning and say ‘the baby slept well didn’t she’. Slept well? SLEPT WELL? Then I say ‘since she’s sleeping so well, can you take over this evening darling?’. The baby wakes twice for all of a minute. He moans he’s exhausted the next day.
  2. He goes to work. His days are always planned out for him. I sit at home thinking wtf am I going to do with them today? He escapes 90% of the tears apart from mine over the phone. Tee hee. I listen to both a baby who’s teething and irritable along with a toddler climbing everything and having a tantrum because he wants to climb out of the window and I selfishly won’t let him. He gets to listen to the radio. He also has a lunch break.
  3. I spend any spare time I can preparing dinner ready for when he walks through the door. He eats the dinner and comments on the amount of washing up. I had done 3 bundles of washing up before he got home. I have two children and two hands. Then we have a big dishwasher debate.
  4. He stumps his toe, throws himself on the floor screaming saying it’s the most painful thing ever. Yes it’s painful, sometimes I laugh at his comment or more him stumping his toe. Sometimes, I’m not in the mood and the glare says it all.
  5. He has OCD. As nice as it is to have everything organised and in it’s place. No, I can’t. It’s not nice. I can never find anything, he gets plenty of messages every. single. day. Asking where he’s put things and why TF HAVE YOU MOVED THEM AGAIN. We have incredibly high shelves in our kitchen and that’s where he chooses to put things I use. The things I use every day. Because they look good there. I would say no-one looks in our cupboards so they don’t need to look good, but people do. Because they look good. It’s a talking point.
  6. He leaves the toothpaste on the sink. We have a cup attached to the wall. That’s where it belongs.
  7. He shaves and leaves his beard in the sink. Not a big deal. But it is a big deal.
  8. Sometimes we argue about things, just because. Just because he’s been at work all day, I’ve been at home all day, we’ve run out of milk why didn’t he mention it last night in Tesco?
  9. If either has an evening out of the home, it turns into a big’ how dare they’. Evenings are the most difficult. Having fun while the other is spending hours calming the baby. Shit.

We argue about the most pointless things. I will be the first to admit I’m usually the instigator. I’m tired. It’ll never affect our relationship, we are both each others outlets. He’s a hero for putting up with me alone God love him.

The Dad Network
10

Date Night Inspiration

If you’re looking for inspiration and ideas for an upcoming date night then take a look at different ideas and hopefully you’ll find the perfect date night. I recently wrote a post about How To Keep The Romance After Children and one of the ideas was to have a date night. Whether it’s weekly or once a month having one night, just the two of you, makes a huge difference in how well you stay connected as a couple. Children take up the majority of your time and conversations, so to set aside an evening for a date is a perfect way to keep the romance alive. No children around to interrupt your conversation with ‘choo choo, car, PEPPA!’ just the two of you enjoying each others company. Bliss!

  • Bowling this is normally more fun when you go on a double date or in a group. This brings out Darrens competitive side. Anything brings out his competitive side. Bowling is great because I have a high chance of winning (in your face Darren). It’s a fun thing you can both enjoy and there’s no question there’ll be plenty of laughs during the night.
  • D404343_10150689784561206_6888287_ninner in a restaurant, very fancy! Can you remember a meal in a restaurant where you haven’t had to bribe your dancing toddler off the table whilst over feeding your baby milk so she calms down? I can and it was days before I gave birth to my son. Call in the baby sitters and book a table at a restaurant you’ll both enjoy. It’s not often you both get to see each other ‘at your best’. Without a spot of baby sick on your shoulder, your toddlers dinner wiped down your leg, your hair in something other than a pony tail because your baby likes to pull large chunks out and him in his work clothes or some other kind of casual clothing. This used to be a regular outing before children and we really took it for granted. Now when we manage to dine out just the two of us it’s such a treat! We both make an effort and we both appreciate how good we can scrub up!
  • Takeaway if you’re like us and your nearest babysitters aren’t really near, then a takeaway makes a great date night. You don’t need to dress up, you don’t need to stay up late, you can enjoy something really tasty while watching whatever you fancy on TV and it’s much cheaper than a restaurant meal. Sometimes there’s even some left for the next day (not in my house!).
  • Weekend away why not turn your date night into a whole weekend! Our children aren’t quite old enough for me to be comfortable leaving them overnight but that’s just me. If you can take advantage of a weekend child free, then enjoy it! Having a weekend away without any responsibilities with you helps relieve any stress, you can enjoy as much as you can of adult activities, I don’t mean those kinds of activities, but a spa, sightseeing, anything you wouldn’t necessarily do if you had children with you. I’m looking forward to eventually having one of these weekends, maybe Barcelona again or if I’m not feeling brave enough to be in a different country to my children then somewhere in the UK will still be a fabulous treat.
  • Bingo it’s not just for ladies and not just for ladies of a certain age. Bingo is so much fun, it’s not expensive and you could win a bunch! We’ve won a few times it’s an exciting feeling and if you’re not much of a talker then Bingo is perfect!
  • DVD you could watch a DVD whilst you’re enjoying your takeaway or just spread out on the sofa once the children are in bed and watch a film that appeals to you both. When we both watch a film we tend to stick to comedy. I’d much rather watch something we can both laugh at than anything too intense. Although we are widening our DVD collection with things like ‘The Hobbit’.
  • Cinema if you’d rather go out to enjoy a film then this way you don’t have to worry about your film being interrupted by a teething baby or a toddler who has just been woken up by the cat scratching his door. Treat yourself to as many sweet treats as you can. You don’t have to feel guilty about eating it in front of your toddler whilst handing him an apple!
  • Concert chances are you’ll have a few artists that you both listen and bop your head too. So, if they have a concert coming up, put a little fund aside so you can both go, have a dance and listen to something other than that nursery rhymes cd you keep meaning to take out of the cd player. Even if you’re both into different kinds of music, any music live is an enjoyable experience and it’s good to try new things knowing it pleases your other half. You could also tie this in with a weekend away for a real splurge date night.
  • Comedy show there’s nothing more therapeutic than having a belly-aching laugh so to enjoy this together is a bonus!
  • Friends if you’ve not managed to catch up with friends lately because when you get any down-time you treat it as just that. Invite them over to you or travel over to them, you’ll both appreciate the adult conversation.
  • Ghost tours it’s not for me as I’m a real wimp but it gives him the chance to be brave (he’s probably peeing his pants secretly) and it’s an experience that’s a bit different from the usual date night.
  • Cooking together make yourself a really tasty three course meal. All you need to spend money on is the ingredients and this helps my man to learn a new meal to make should he ever need to. Pop on some music and have fun with it!

Have a good date night!

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9

Our Trip To Kent Life

PhotoGrid_1435172413771 (1)My lovely mum had taken Monday and Tuesday off to travel up and spend it with us. My midweeks are usually just me and the children with the odd playdate (eventually we will explore our new local playgroups) so to see my mum and the children to see their nana was lovely. The Monday we had a fairly chilled (not so chilled with the children) day at our home, then Tuesday we wanted to make the most of the day and the weather so we bundled the children in the car and tripped out to Kent Life.

It didn’t start out well since I put the wrong postcode in. Just one wrong number and it turned a 20 minute journey into an hour, must be my chunky thumbs!

Once we got to Kent Life, everyone was more than pleased to escape out of the car. The play park was positioned right in front of the entrance, my son is a swing/park addict! So we wanted to quickly eat our lunch before exploring but I had to wrestle him to the bench. He sat looking so sad for himself staring at this huge colourful park so we abandoned lunch and started to explore!

PhotoGrid_1435172491649 (1)The first place we went to visit was the petting part, sheep, cows, rabbits, goats lots of lovely animals to coo over. Mum had bought the kids (I saw kids I mean me and her, thanks mum!) some food to feed the animals. Something I LOVED doing when I was younger, getting a bag of ‘feed’ and feeding animals. I abandoned them all and went straight to the sheep, these weren’t the normal ‘in the field’ sheep they were all different, gorgeous (some a bit funny looking) all very cute! I pulled out my bag of feed and they swarmed! They scared the **** out of me! I seemed like such a loser ‘mum MUM MUM’ I’m a mum myself why was I calling for MY mum to help me?! One of the sheep in particular seemed to have an evil streak in it (see the pictures do you think he looks mean?) so whenever I went to feed the cute fluffy brown sheep that were so low to the ground they couldn’t get a look in, this other sheep with eyes that said ‘feed me b*tch’ threw itself in the air and took all the other sheep out! I should have been impressed by this animals skills and determination, but instead I stood there almost wetting myself calling for my mum. I’m a grown woman with my own children, people must have given me a few odd looks!

PhotoGrid_1435172540369 (1)Once I had finished one bag of feed with the sheep (the leader of the sheep eat most of the bag, well, all of the bag) I turned to the goats. Mason was off with his nana and Mia was with me giving her best two toothed grin at all the animals, until one goat made a noise, a very loud BAA. Then she cried. It didn’t take her long to calm down from the mouthy goat so I got my other bag of feed out. None of them seemed bothered but there was one goat I was desperate to feed. She was tiny, cute and calm. She walked over and rested her face on the fence with her eyes closed (look at the pic, cute right) she made me so broody for a baby goat. I filled my hand with feed and placed it under her tiny chin, then EVERY other goat came charging at the fence barging my little goat out of the way. So I just pretended I had no feed (because they understand) and walked off. Then I quickly ran back after they had dispersed to feed the tiny baby goat, yay!

PhotoGrid_1435156874434 (3)The next stop was the tractor ride, my mum took Mason on first and they both enjoyed it, I think she did more than him just a tiny bit. Then it was my turn to go with Mason, my mum took Mia in the buggy then out of nowhere these school children just appeared on the tractor and filled it up! B*stards. I queued, got excited, we waited our turn but got shimmied to the back and had to wait for the next ride. It worked out well really because us and another little family got the tractor to ourselves. I sat Mason down next to me and we were at the back of the trailer attached to the tractor (above the wheels). We got a warning from the driver that it’ll be bumpy, how bumpy could it get we’ll be fine! After the first turning these ‘bumps’ were like ditches and mountains! Our bums lifted of the seat so I grabbed Mason and held him tight on my lap! We had fun though, he loves experiencing new things he’s such an adventurous and fun boy.

PhotoGrid_1435172951465 (1)We did plenty more but the main attraction for Mason was the swing, it would be rude not to test it out since he IS Kents swing tester. I started to get a bit anxious about the time  Mia needed a nap, Mason needed his dinner made and mum needed to catch a train. Getting Mason off the swing is like getting Darren out of Nandos (a very hard job). So we gave him the warning that we were about to leave, he shook his head. He now says ‘no’ instead of when he needs the toilet (I don’t know where he got that from but that’s how we know he about to put his nappy to use!) he uses it when we ask questions or tell him things he doesn’t agree with. We spent a while pleading with him to let us haul him out of the swing and he just snapped ‘no,no,no’. My mum is calm with him and wants him to stay happy, I think is normal for grandparents and understandable, it’s my job to be the meanie fun squisher. I had to distract him with other fun things he could do on the way back to the car, like the slide or going up stairs, he loves stairs! After a 2 minute, turned 10 minute walk to the car we were finally on our way!

They were ‘stacking’ lorries on the motorway so part of the motorway had been completely blocked off, only open to lorries. So this caused us to be caught in a hell of a lot of traffic. One of my fears while driving is lorries, being anywhere near a lorry really freaks me out so being caught in a ton of slow-moving traffic, surrounded by lorries made me very nervous! The irony is that I was so eager to get back and get things in order but it didn’t matter because it took us a couple of hours to get back. It wasn’t a bad car journey though good music and my singing always makes it a fun ride!

Life Unexpected
22

How To Keep The Romance After Children

Before you have children you have so much time for each other, plenty of time to enjoy romantic dinners, trips away and no-one to steal either of your attention. Once you have a child that all disappears and the romance can easily fade away and instead you turn in to a pair of human beings co-habiting under the same roof arguing over who did the last night feed.

After we had our son (our first) we were slowly losing our romance in our sleep deprived state. We just stopped taking time for each other, we lived and breather our new baby. I didn’t realise how far apart a child could push two people ‘in love’ I always thought a baby, if anything, would bring you closer together (too many chick flicks). But no, I soon realised this perfect, amazing little baby can unknowingly cause us to drift apart and forget what it is we love about each other. Luckily our relationship was a strong one to begin with so any arguments or disagreements we had (from being so tired and overwhelmed) we just forgot.

284458_10150325807536206_1669194_nA baby takes up so much time and attention from parents it is so easy for romance to slowly creep out of the door. Once we were less overwhelmed and catching up on a bit more sleep, I remember realising seeing Darren in a completely different way. He wasn’t just my partner anymore he was the father of our baby too. Why haven’t we had a conversation in weeks? What was the last thing we spoke about other than baby bits? When did we last watch a film or even a tv programme together? I couldn’t remember anything. We were putting so much effort into our son that we forgot to put any effort into our relationship. Here is a list of small easy things we do that brought the romance element back into our relationship:

Kisses

Not just when he goes to work or we go to sleep but just because. Who doesn’t love a random kiss from someone you love?

Making Time

In the day I try to get as much done as possible so when he gets home there is a certain amount of the evening where we aren’t bound to chores and the children are asleep. This time is sometimes just half an hour or it can be much longer it’s all chore and child dependant. This time is so important, we talk about the children when he first gets in and they’re awake, but when they’re asleep we just talk.

Communication

Following on from my last point, talking and communicating with each other is a great way to feel close to each other. Sometimes we talk about a whole lot of nothing, sometimes we have serious talks and sometimes we just talk about funny times and be really silly with each other. We do know each other extremely well and more than anyone else could know us but it’s easy to lose each other in the mist of children. So having a chat every day keeps us connected and it’s nice to talk about things other than kiddie things (they do usually come up in some kind of conversation still, how could they not :).

TV Time

We used to have our soap that we watched EVERY night together whether we watched it at 8pm or 10pm we enjoyed that time. We don’t watch that anymore but we watch other things together, not every night now but watching something together on TV keeps a common interest and we chat about what we’re watching while we watch it. If we see something that’s due on TV we will both enjoy then we record it and make the time to watch it together, it’s almost like date night.

Date Night

Whether it’s once a week or once a month it’s the perfect way to keep romance in your relationship. If you have someone to look after the children while you both go out to dinner, bingo or a movie then take advantage of it! We have moved just a little too far now so our date nights consist of a takeaway and something juicy on TV, he even lights candles sometimes! How romantic! Our date nights are perfect for us we can enjoy our food, good tv, each others company, all in the comfort of our own home.

IMG_1582Texting

We speak a few times a day on the phone but we both enjoy getting a simple text message that just says ‘I love you’ or anything else nice.

Gratitude

Darren loves it when I tell my friends and family how amazing and helpful he is. It’s true he’s a brilliant dad and he’s a perfect partner. He works hard and he knows I do to so we both appreciate being recognised for everything we do. I think it’s sweet of him to be so pleased when I’ve talked him up to someone.

Children are such a blessing to a family and we are lucky for the two we have. But children are also extremely hard work at times and put quite a pressure on a relationship because we take our tiredness and our tough days out on each other. We will still be snappy with each other occasionally but we will do what we can to keep our relationship strong and keep it romantic by doing all of the above. Is there anything else you do?

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