Home is where the heart is. Valentine fantasies.

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Good afternoon guys! Okay, I admit that the title of this post may seem misleading, I best correct myself before setting you readers up for disappointment. This is no fifty shades of grey theme, you can keep your pants on. I am keeping things clean and talking about fantasies that as a family we hold for the future.

It is shrove Tuesday, pancake day as it is better known. A day to celebrate and eat my favourite food and just to mix things up, I recieved a Valentine bouquet from Euan a day early. With my favourite food day now combined with Valentins, I can only assume that this ought to be a good day.

I have woke on this day to some beautiful flowers delivered and a day is planned out with the main ladies in my life, my baby, my Mother and my sister. Galentines! With that in mind, I am feeling optimistic, high on love and plan to share with you bunch some recent topics of discussion in our household. Home is where the heart is.

Opportunities, higher wages, better quality of living, the great outdoors..we all strive and crave more. I mean, there has to be more to life than a 9-5 dead end job and British weather. Surely? There has to be a key to finding a happy work/life balance all while finding peace of mind too?

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We aim to find a place to reside that will bring us better prospects to raise a family and a place we can live minimally with access to a large variety of activities and opportunities. I would love to have three children one day, i grew up in a busy household and want to bring that chaos into a family of my own. A large family would mean a big move and many changes so that our children would have the best start that we can offer.

We hope to find a location with good education, health benefits and a healthy lifestyle, vitamin D on the occasion value for money and homes that we can only dream of. The grass isn’t always greener, no but in our circumstance,  we have nothing to lose in all honesty.

We dont seek much, nor do we have crazy expectations, we just crave a change that will bring something more, I don’t think it is wrong to want better and to do well and I think a fresh start would be welcome. I think we all want to start over from time to time. This time, we are willing to work to make that happen. No more pipe dreams.

During recent talks myself and Euan have decided that we wish to move away from home to raise our family. It’s been done many times by people in both better and worse circumstances and ther are plenty of success stories with regards to big moves with many folks saying once leaving home and finding settlement elsewhere, they have never looked back.

A move of any accord with a family is no small task, the way we see it, go big or go home. We have much research to do in regards to finding the right place for us to settle and see our children through school but with the information that is out there and the help available online, I’m certain we can come to an informed decision with location and area planning.

Once we are set with a base, we can then further explore our options and expenses. We can get estimates for the money we require to save and work our butt’s off to make life happen. I certainly feel it is time for big changes and a new climate. There is so much to life and this world away from this City.

As a family, we want and encourage new adventure, we want to live our best life together. I am sure all this planning and saving will be no easy task and bring plenty stress but together with the hopes of a better future in mind for ourselves and our family, we can achieve anything we wish.

Persevering and patience is key so it is a good job that I have left Euan at hand to do all the dirty work and the researching. I don’t cope so well with being patient, I only end up frustrated and upset. We don’t have time for that with all the planning and prep that must be done. I’ll simply take a back seat and advise on this occasion, the easy ride. No pun intended.

The Valentines hype has had us in a wee love bubble and brought us to some thoughts and new hopes. We have been thinking about our future and all that family life will hold, it has us both feeling motivated and excited which has led to this post and thought sharing with you all. We dont know where will be be five years from now but we have a plan to find a new place to call home and claim residence for the benefit of a happy family life. After all, family is the most important gift and to grow together with an ever flourishing relationship is what really matters. Happy Valentines everybody.

To you and yours, love always wins.

 

Keren.

Yes, babies cry. Deal with it (and love them hard)

I am writing this post having been inspired by a recent trip to the GP for concerns over the health of our baby daughter, Eleanor. A baby who has always been, in my opinion very vocal and dependent. I believe this to stem from her connection with me due to breastfeeding. I could be wrong.

My partner had suggested that we call the GP to make an appointment regarding an issue with our baby who seems to cry constantly and wriggle around in pain. Eleanor has reflux which is currently controlled by medication, however, some days not even medication seems to help.

I called the doctor to make an appointment for as soon as possible. I didn’t want Eleanor to be in pain but nor did I expect much was up. She was after all, just being her usual self.  Euan arrived home to attend the appointment, I discovered that we were taking the car to the GP which is a short distance from home, I became upset and wound up.

You see, this sounds silly but it’s tough for me to get out alone. I spend much of my time alone with her and a lot of this is spent indoors as it’s just too tricky to get out, especially with being in a first floor flat. If I want to go anywhere, there is a whole battle with the Pram getting down stairs and out the door before we even get moving.

Some days it isn’t worth the fight with Eleanor if she is in a particularly sleepy or in a grumpy mood. I find I don’t have the fight in me to battle through the cries very often, blame it on the lack of sleep.

It’s easier for me to simply just return home than to deal with the stares of strangers passing judgment as I still past with my baby screaming out from her Pram. I’m not cut out for public judgement, it brings a great deal of anxiety. So, with that mental image and sound of a babies cry echo through your eardrums, forgive me for getting upset having had my dream of five minutes in the fresh air, shattered.

What might not seem a big deal to some, can be a huge deal for others. Something which I have recently learned. We all handle things differently and lately, I feel like I can barely handle things at all. I spend most days alone and some times I feel as though I am losing my mind. Perhaps I am. Perhaps I lack social interaction.

I understand that my partner has work commitments but a five minute walk is not really going to make such a big difference to the working day when  opposed to three minutes in the car? I feel alone much of the time right now and the inability to get out can lead me to feel like I’m stuck in these four walls, all I wished for was my partner to take a short walk to the GP clinic with me. I was once very active and I crave to lead an active life again.

A life that has more challenging excercise to it than the constant bending to change nappies or emptying the tumble dryer. I need to walk, I need to have fresh air. Without it, I go crazy. I’ve given up on my fitbit for the moment as the step count became so pitiful, I felt ashamed to even track and document it.

Back to the GP, the reasoning of this post, I had a feeling that I knew what the doctor would say, having been in this position before. I’m usually lucky to get an appointment as its normally an automated phone service. Nonetheless, the story never changes and the outcome is always “babies cry, it’s a phase” or something along those lines.

I’m never taken seriously with the GPS and feel as though my worries are over looked and brushed off as though I am a mere hypochondriac. Even if I were, I would expect better care and time in the hands of the professionals than what they tend to give.

There was no answer. Babies cry and that’s just how it is. Some are more vocal than others yes, but it doesn’t mean that anything is wrong. It were suggested that we try control crying.. as if this would help with her round the clock cries. I wasn’t looking for answers of how to get my baby into a night sleep routine, and I didn’t want advice for control crying, I’d get more information from a book to be frank.

I wasn’t looking for anything actually,  I knew all too well how the appointment would go and knew that I would leave feeling stupid. My partner wanted this appointment as he was certain something was up. I merely booked it to prove a point and to show him that what I tell him when I call the GP each time is not a lie. I wanted him to see for himself how it goes. I wanted to prove my point and stamp my feet at the same time. My inner diva was out to play. I fear you not.

Some babies cry more so than others and they want held. This I know to be true with Eleanor. We were told that she was on the top dose for her reflux medication and to keep with this. When solid food becomes more frequent, her reflux should improve. Other than that, deal with the crying and just get on. If I felt it necessary, I could make an appointment to see the Health Visitor for advice on control crying but there was no cause for concern.

This was all said as I sat there choked up and crying spontaneously myself. I was crying because I was mad to have taken the car when I had hopes of fresh air. I was crying because I was drained, physically and emotionally. I was crying because this was the first outing of the week that involved human interaction  and it was now Wednesday afternoon.

I was mad at my partner, Euan for making me book an appointment to which I knew the outcome. I was told that he would get answers and yet here we are, no further than I have ever got before, Eleanor still crying.

I feel an element of guilt. Guilt that I can’t help my crying baby, I can’t take away her reflux and stop the back arching pain soar through her tiny body. I feel guilty that I want so desperately to have a break from her, even just for five minutes of peace. I feel guilty that I feel the need to have a break from her. As her Mother, I shouldn’t want a break from her. Should I?

I often can feel a whole lot of guilt and it seems that my best is never nor ever will be good enough. I ponder over thoughts about my parenting and I wonder if I’m a good Mother. I wonder if my Daughter knows how much I love her and I worry that I am incapable of the around the clock care she requires.

The Gp, I assume was left wondering who the appointment was initially made for. The sobbing mess of a Mother that I presented to her, or the baby sleeping in her car seat as though butter would not melt? Typical.

The thing is, the GP was correct, babies cry and all that we can do is hold them close and love them harder. It’s hard, it’s real tough, especially when you feel so hopeless and can’t help them take the discomfort of reflux away. Or even know the reason behind the cries. Is it reflux, teething, ear ache?

The guilt you feel along with the pain can be overbearing and overwhelming and I forget that as parents, we too are only human and we need to give ourselves a break and cut some slack or we will lose our minds. Its hard to always remain on top on situations and it’s hard to mimic what a baby wants at all times. Some days, there is just no pleasing these tiny humans.

I guess, I should be both grateful and thankful of Eleanor’s super dependent personality. I am lucky that I have my baby to hold and come time, I will look back and miss the cuddles and the closeness of my baby girl.

The days when I’m back at work and wish I could be curled up with her lovingly by my side at home, when she is a stroppy pre teen and I’m no longer cool enough to cuddle. I should take these moments to appreciate my ‘needy and vocal’ baby and love her as hard as I can all while embracing her before it’s too late and she no longer cares for the comfort of my company.

I hope that through weaning, the reflux will ease off. Our journey with food has only just began and we are still on select puree foods. I hope that when we venture into more tastes and textures, introduce baby led weaning her reflux will slowly disappear and we can forget about the difficulties that it has brought. Until then, I will continue to monitor and control it as best as I can with medication and a whole lot of baby cuddles. I hope that as she grows, she will become more independent and less reliant on myself, with this, the tears will stop too.

If you too have the struggle of a very vocal baby, don’t feel so alone. There’s always someone going through the same and there is always a light at the end of the tunnel.

We as parents are often too hard on ourselves and can be our own worst enemy, let’s be a little more appreciative of our efforts. After all, we are only doing our best and there are days that push the limits but we have to see past this. Take the good with the bad.

So here I am, sat on the sofa, same spot as always with a lukewarm cup of coffee, staring at a blank screen with a numb buttom from lack of movement,  preaching to all you parents out there, to take your baby and love them hard.

Keren x

Made with love. An insight to my handcrafted wedding.

Hi guys, hope everyone is well? I know that I previously stated I’d update you all with the wedding plans when I had some going. Well, you will be glad to hear, the party planning is in full swing and I’m working away on ideas and decor planning. I thought it would be good to do a wee update and let you all hear about how I am getting on.

I’m not keen to give away too much information just yet, I feel a sense of suspense is quite nice and keeps it a little secretive. After all, my wedding day is my baby right now along with my darling Eleanor of course and I keep the day and the organising close to heart. This is mainly due to the fact that as it is my wedding day, a once in a lifetime day for myself and my family, it will hold a special place in my heart forever and I want to keep it sacred and close to me.

As mentioned, my wedding will be a small affair with at most twenty guests,  providing each invite guest makes it along that is. I have been working away in the background hard at getting plans in place for the decoration of the reception room where we will host our wedding meal. Trying to get my plans set and in order for the day as soon when I return to work following maternity leave, I will be lacking the time to plan and organise. Hence why I am so keen to remain full steam ahead right now. I am on a limited time frame.

The reception room we have will cater to our guests of twenty and the room is basically an empty canvas where we can play around and have fun with the decor and design. I have in mind the picture of what I want, it’s just putting it all together right now. The table will be one large round table, with a side table off set for holding the cakes and favours. I have free reign to design the room and tables as I wish. Time to dig in and have a little fun.

I am thinking home made, hand crafted and a little bit bohemian! Lots of floral and pastels coming together in a rustic feel. Whatever rustic means. What does rustic mean? Whatever, it sounds good.

Our wedding cakes will be homemade by none other than my own Mother,the best baker I know, as bias as I may be. We wish for two cakes, one tier and round. A fruit cake with a marzipan and iced topping and also a homemade victoria sponge. By no means will they be showstoppers but they aren’t supposed to be either. If I wanted a perfecly crafted cake, I’d have went to a bakery and have the professionals work away.

I’m busy picking out cake decorations right now. Going for a plain sponge with minimal decor with the Victoria cake and hoping to cover our fruit cake with florals and a pretty yet simple cake topper. Nothing fancy and certainly not perfection but to me, it will be perfect. I will be ready to scour etsy and find a handcrafted wooden topper.

For our favours, again these will be homemade with love by my younger sister and presented in cellophane bags, hand wrapped and crafted in my own way. I have this all set and ready to roll with the bags and decorations already picked out. I will remain coy and keep my ideas to myself for now. I can’t be giving away all my plans after all, otherwise, I’d not keep you interested. If ever I had your interest anyway.

With the room decor I’m raring to go with a minimalist look and add plenty of florals to the room. I’m yet to decide on a table topper but wish for a mix of pastels. I have confetti and little floral buds and petals picked out to sprinkle over the table in a variety of pastel mix.

As there will be so little of us, I’ve requested for just one large table to dine at with the hope for plenty of interaction and chatting. After all, it’s about having a good time. I thought that a top table with a few others would be too spaced out and not have the cosy feel that I’m looking for. I’d like to imagine everyone chatting away and having a merry wine together. I want plenty of laughter from all and for everyone to have a great time.

I’m trying to work as inexpensive as possible, mainly due to the fact I don’t want glitz or glam and I don’t believe that spending a fortune makes for a good day. I mean the average cost of a wedding is near enough £26,000. Madness.

I hope to keep my budget at £1500 all in all. That’s for the rings, ceremony, reception meal and drinks, the hotel suites along with everything else. I’m keen to remain strict in this. Call me a cheap skate but I don’t believe in splashing the cash out for one day. I don’t deem it ever necessary to fork out such an expense and I don’t think a huge expense ensures a good time either.

I want to do lots of hand crafting, lots of creating and get making. I’d like to take on as big of a role as I can with the whole. Preparation and have my wedding crafted by my own hand. There’s something about doing it yourself that just screams good vibes.

I’m super excited to get stuck in and get my hands busy with crafting and my mind busy with planning. When I have a little more plans in place and something more to show, I will share with you all. In the meantime, I’ll get back to browsing etsy and other local markets for home made goods and crafting parts that I can put together by my own hands. I have been a local at hobby craft of late. Trailing the aisles for bits and bobs that I can work with. May I add, I am by no means good with arts and crafts.

I aim for my wedding day to be as close to heart as possible and therefore hope to put most of the day together by myself or with the help from some close family members. Opting for a local, homemade wedding day that I can cherish forever more.

Does anyone have any tips or tricks on homemade weddings? I’m open to any ideas and suggestions that are just a little bit different from the norm!

Keren xo

 

We set the date!

Well, I must say that the year has been kind to us. The most special year I have had yet, the year we began the family adventure, the year we got engaged, the year life as we knew it changed forever. I have taken only the good from 2017 and will carry it with me for the rest of my life. It’s not every year you have your first child or get engaged!

To keep the trend going and end the year with a bang, we decided to take the plunge, set the date and book our wedding ceremony. We done this is all of two days may I add, with a baby in tow. Productivity at its finest.

With having the perfect date in mind, we already had a good idea of when we would wed, we just didn’t have the year in place. The fourth of September was our date of choice, already a special day for us as it is both our anniversary and the date of which we took Eleanor to have her birth registered. We thought to extend the day with another happy memory and add to it the day that we are to become husband and wife.

Euan called the office on Friday morning to check that the date was available for the coming year, 2018. They had the date free and we had the choice of time slot to attend. With it being a Tuesday, a funny day to marry.. we know, we went with an early afternoon slot. As the local registrar is a central location we wanted a time that it wouldn’t be rush hour so to speak and guests would have easy access to the venue.

Our ceremony will be small with only family in attendance. Euans parents and their partners, Euan’s grandparents and my parents. My side of the family will be outnumbered however, we decided that we didn’t want siblings or extended family at the ceremony. Small and sweet. Our witnesses will be our birth Mother’s.

To follow, we have booked a small room that can host up to twenty guests at the Carmelite in Aberdeen. We have a room from 5pm and will be greeted with some arrival drinks and finger foods for our wedding party before further guests arrive for the evening meal which will be a sit down three course job with drinks to follow for those who feel like having a few. We are aware it is a school night and people may want to leave promptly after the meal, we don’t expect a wild night by any accord. I don’t think I’d hack that to be honest.

Something I previously hadn’t planned on having however with the extended guests, we decided it would be best to host a meal where we can make special memories with our nearest and dearest. We have chosen specific finger foods and a set menu that will cater for everyone with a few minor adjustments to me carried out.

The room will be filled with just twenty of our guests with three children included. Though quite small, we will have just one rounded table for eating with guests and have decided to decorate the room with different chairs and a variety of colours and fabrics.

The room will have a quirky setting with lot’s of florals for the added bohemian vibes. I’m a big fan of anything floral and have even ordered myself a flower crown for the day rather than the classic veil.

I’m not giving too much away though, there are a lot of ideas out there and I’m still mulling over decor and styles without getting over the top or stepping into a territory of expense.

My dress is all set, it’s not a wedding dress by no accord and it is certainly not designer not expensive, but it’s a dress that was gifted to me several years ago that I have been desperate to wear, it just was never suited to a day trip to the shops or visiting my Mother. It’s a special dress that I have kept in my wardrobe with the tags still on waiting patient for the perfect occasion.

Come closer to the time, I’ll share a sneak preview with you all. Don’t worry. I’d love to share all with you bunch but I have to keep some level of suspense.

We did stick to our guns and keep it as a small affair as we have no need for a big day, all we wanted was a simple yet elegant day to cherish for years to come. I can’t believe when I marry I will be holding my baby girls hand the whole way through! What a privilege, I am certainly one lucky lady and a very proud Mother.

We have found wedding bands and sized ourselves up, with a click of a button we can have them ordered to suit. I have the fancy diamond band as an engagement ring, with a wedding band I have went as basic as you can go I want nothing more than a slim yet timeless platinum band to mark my commitment.

The invites are set to go and the venues are booked, now we just need to pull it all together and we are well on our way to celebrating our big day. There’s a lot of work going on with us behind the scenes and much planning to do – much more than I expected. The notebook is out, the ideas are in and I’m never off of etsy as I try to source ideas and material for the day.

Keep your eyes peeled for further posts and wedding updates, I’m sure there will be plenty and lots of big reveals on the way. Now, if you don’t mind, I’m off to plan for the big day and scour the net for some mini moon ideas. I’m thinking a City break for the three of us.

Lots of love,

Keren x

A Holly, jolly, Christmas.

Our first Christmas as a family of three has been and gone so I thought that I’d write a small blog dedicated to the big day. A special day for us as a new family and a day I’m sure will hold special memories for years to come.

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As previously mentioned, we spent the day at home alone as a family. Family visits and meals were done and dusted before the day so that we could spend it alone and have some us time for a change. Life really does get so busy and you get caught up, forget to take time out for yourself and your family, especially at busy times like this but this year, we didn’t want for that to happen. This year was about us and our baby girl.

Now, we had the choice of options for where to spend the day but rather than run around like crazy and spend the whole day chasing tail, we decided to just have a quiet day indoors and enjoy the company of one another in the comfort of home. Take the day at our own pace.

On Christmas morning, we all excitedly woke. As tired as we were, Christmas is a big day and we wanted to make the most of the time we had. The eve was a rough night for a little Eleanor my poor tootie, she spent most of the night keeping Mum up with constant feeding. Although tired, we didn’t let it ruin the day. We pushed on and had a lovely time.

Once up and ready, we dressed and got Eleanor all sorted, in a little Mrs Claus outfit may I add! Too cute, I know. We played some music and sat around the tree as we exchanged and opened gifts. I made sure to allow Eleanor to touch and see each gift so she would have some knowledge of the moment. We all received lovely gifts and Eleanor was totally spoiled not just by Santa, but from the grandparents and family. It was so exciting opening her gifts and packing away all of her new goodies. It’s definitely clothes galore around here.

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Presents aside, it was onto breakfast. Bacon rolls, a traditional Christmas breakfast with my family which we have carried on to our own. This is as followed by a walk around with our dog Fern before coming back home to relax before I began the dinner.

We played with Eleanor and watched some Netflix, listened to music.. Christmas classics of course. For the dinner, I made a tomato and pepper soup to start with, now.. this turned out to be more of a salsa and really not much of a soup. A few mouthfuls in, we laughed and decided to call it quits with the dodgy soup and wait for the main event. I mean, the bread was tasty at least. Not all terrible and we didn’t go hungry.

Between feeds we watched shows and chilled. There were plenty of snuggles and interactive conversation. The main course, a traditional Christmas dinner was quite the success and we ate it all really, Fern got the left overs which I’m sure she woofed down (she’s meant to be on a diet.. Shh). I intended to cook a turkey however, on Christmas eve I discovered it required forty eight hours to defrost, not just a mere twenty four which I had initially thought and planned for. Oops. You can probably tell that I don’t cook often, especially meat.

Last minute on Christmas eve, we had to make a run to Tesco to pick up some form of meat for the dinner. A pork and sage pre cooked joint. Phew. Thank you Tesco for saving the day. I’m still annoyed at myself with the Turkey though. I thought I was all set, could have been a disaster, I dread to think if I hadn’t checked the instructions and poisoned us all! My God.

In the evening, we hadn’t much room for dessert so rather we smacked on chocolates and watched Elf all cosied up on the couch with a blanket. Just the three of us with Fern at our feet and the snack bowl in our laps. I recall falling asleep for most of the movie, this is not unusual for me though, I’d had a sneaky glass of red, I was never going to survive after that. It was a lovely end to a great day together, watching a fun filled classic and reminiscing on the events of the past year. Boy, 2017 has been good to us. A year to remember for sure, I’ll post a blog to reflect on the year. The ups and the downs but for now, I just wanted to share an update about our first Christmas day as a wee team with our baby girl.

I couldn’t have wished for a better it, though quiet, we were content with the company we had and we got the day to relax which is what we wanted more than anything. Some down time after the whole rush from the weeks leading up to Christmas, time to refresh as far as that gets with a baby and to put our feet up. It sure is nice to stop and take a break from it all, especially as a family unit. Sitting back together and taking it all in is truly how it feels to be happy. To share a life with someone that you love and enjoy quality time.

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For me, that is what Christmas is all about, the quality time to spend and share with family and loved ones. It was a day that I won’t ever forget and will forever hold a special place in my heart, even when things get a bit hectic, I can look back at this festive period and remember how relaxed and content that we were. Years from now when my baby is running around as High as a kite on Christmas day, I can peacefully look back and remember this first Christmas with her. At home as a new family finding our feet, snuggled up and embracing everything that life has to offer. I really love my family more than anything, I’d have never expected to experience such a love or even have my own family at this stage in my life. I am so proud and grateful for all that life has passed my way. What’s meant for you won’t pass you by.

Merry Christmas to you all, I truly wish that everyone had a great Christmas break and spent the day just as they wished to do so. Not to mention eat way too much spoils…guilty.

Next up, Hogmanay. Onto new beginnings, 2017 has been fantastic, here’s to the New Year and what that may bring our way.

Love Keren x

Stripping back on social media.

In an attempt to lead a life near free from social media, I have recently made some big changes to my online activity and personal online profiles. A step in the right direction.

I feel that in this day and age, we are so consumed by social media, our smartphones and forms of technology and following trends that we get from scouring the web. I feel that it can be overpowering and consume most of our daily lives. Sometimes we aren’t even aware of just how attached we have become to technology and the social media sites that have began to define us. Soon we won’t even need to step outside. Everything is done with the click of a button on our mobile or computers.

We buy things we don’t need influenced by what we see, what we read. I’ll put my hands up and admit defeat there. I’m a sucker for shopping, all I need is that little push and the debut card is out to play.

In an attempt to become less frequent on social media and step out from the realms of the online world, I have cut back my social accounts. I recently stripped my Instagram account almost bare, bar photographs that I hold close to my heart and removed anything about myself apart room my name in my bio. I removed followers and accounts that I follow. It trimmed it right back in a bid to start afresh. I suppose you could call it that. A fresh start.

My Facebook account is the only other activity I have online, I don’t use twitter and haven’t for years. My Facebook is only used to post the occasional photograph of Eleanor for the grandparents to see and to chat to my own Mother on messenger as she doesn’t do WhatsApp or texting. My Facebook account holds little friends, only the people I know and it is private so that not just anyone can have a nosey to see what’s going on in my life. I’d ideally be rid of Facebook, however, I need it at this time to communicate with some family and friends, especially those I’m not in touch with daily.

I felt that I didn’t want to share everything online anymore. Now that my teenage years are over and I am starting to establish myself as a Mother, I want to be able to use my free time to focus on my baby girl. To step away from my mobile phone, to get an escape from the online world of social media and just embrace the time that I have, here and now.

I want to get away from relying on social media to share images and messages, I know realise that I don’t need a specific number of likes on a photo to make me feel good. I don’t need others to approve of my daily activity. I don’t need to be influenced by what I see others do online. As a Mother, with my own family to focus on, I want to begin to be my sole influencer.

I want to take pride in myself and my family life witout the approval of online accounts. I wish to put social media behind me as much as I can (I was previously a big over sharer, something which I have recently cut back on). I don’t want my daughter to grow up and follow trends she views online, I don’t want her to see me scouring the Web from a young age. I want her to see me watching shows of interest, to see me bake, to read, to see me smile and laugh for real. Not to see my giggle over memes of Gemma Collins. Again, guilty.

I’ve decided to strip back and step away from social media. I’ve decided that I want to take the time to be with my daughter and my family and to really be with them. Not to be in another dimension online. My full attention has to be for my family and for myself. I wish my daughter to grow into a strong and self reliable individual who doesn’t need the influence of social media to path her as an individual.

On a bid to raise my daughter well and live a good family life, to find my happy balance, I am stepping away from. The world of social media and online accounts. This may seem extreme to some of you but the thing is, I don’t need these accounts,

I don’t need likes or praise from strangers online to make myself feel good and I certainly don’t want Eleanor to grow and feel that to be someone in this world and to feel recongnised she needs to rely on social media. I want to raise her to be an individual in her own rights and to be independent. She will find her own feet and her calling some day, and I hope that when she does, she wasn’t influenced by the world online.

I have been consumed by technology and the online world for too long. As a young girl, I grew up around Facebook and Instagram. I felt that to be recognised and to be wanted, you needed to have a set number of like son posts, or comments. You don’t. The oh person that you need to please is yourself. I aim to step away from social media platforms in a bid to find myself as a Mother, a daughter, and a friend.

Has anyone felt this same way, that we are all too consumed by technology and the opinions of strangers online? Have any of you taken a break from the world online, if so what did it bring to you?

Keren x

The pessimists guide to Wedding planning.

To be or not to be.

….shocker alert.

Okay, don’t panic. I’ve not ran off to get married in secret, yet. Here I am, twenty five years of age, a newly engaged, Mother of one with a whole lot of prospects for the future –  Marriage being one of those prospects added to the never ending list.

Whats the catch? Well, the thing is..  I don’t want a Wedding. I mean, I want to be married to my partner by all means but the Wedding is an unnecessary event and an expense that I don’t particularly want.

Here is the thing, I love my fiance and I truly am living the happy family life I have always desired. To be married to my best friend will be a dream, only the thought of a Wedding ceremony is quite disturbing.  The thought of all the planning and running around makes me nauseated.

I, I mean.. we, have decided that when we choose to marry, whenever that may be, will hold a very intimate ceremony. A celebration between ourselves,there will be no big ordeal and most definitely no fuss.

I know that I’m talking Weddings but there is no rush to walk down the aisle. I mean, we have a child already. We’ve done this all back to front as it is. We have essentially eliminated the need to race to the alter. There is nothing to prove. Not to ourselves or anyone else.

When we do set the date and take our vows, I have opted to have a ceremony of as little as five guests in a local registrar office. I know, this may seem crazy to some of you out there. What type of woman doesn’t want the lavish ceremony of her dreams? The big special day that most of us dream of from the age of six?

I am not that person and I never have been. Weddings have never interested me, I dread having to attend them and marriage was never on my mind. I didn’t dig for an engagement and I could remain happily unmarried for life. Not because I don’t love my fiance, but because a a wedding is just an over the top event in my mind. No Wedding, no matter how big nor small can prove the love that you share with another. Unpopular opinion, I know.

I feel that proving your love to someone doesn’t need to be a massive ordeal. Especially when you know you are with this person for life (I have known since our first date). We have made a beautiful baby girl together and no Wedding can compare to the feelings, the love, the emotions that have already been accomplished. I can only hope to expand our family with time and continue to lead a happy family life. To focus our time, attention and love on our family life and ourselves comes first.

Sure, like any girl, I like pretty things, but I don’t care for a big Wedding and I don’t think I’m wrong not to care how we take our vows. I love my partner regardless of the location we wed at and how we decide to do it.

Hell, had we been in Vegas when Euan proposed, I’d have taken a drive through wedding with some strangers from the street as witnesses. Sorry, Mum. For me, my relationship is important, not the dress I wear for the day.

Why dont I want a Wedding ceremony you ask? Rather simply, I don’t want to spend my wedding day entertaining others or wondering if everyone else is having a good time. I want to hold the day as close to my heart as possible with as few people as possible. To enjoy the day with my partner and my girl and not to have to stress about pleasing others. Maybe that is my selfish side coming out to play.

Real romantic, huh?

I don’t need the whole all eyes on me wedding. I don’t want to be inviting cousins to my Wedding day that I haven’t seen in years. I don’t want the big white dress, the bridesmaids, the fuss and I don’t want the over expensive three course meal which is similar at every single wedding. A wedding is an opportunity for others to come together and get drunk.

Will the hassle and months of planning for the big day be worth it? I mean, will it even be remembered the following morning by guests when hangovers are being nursed and bodies are refuelled with bacon rolls?

Soup, roast dinner, sticky toffee pudding? Not for me.The thing is wether I need the big white traditional wedding or not, I don’t want it. They are all so similar to me, what difference is there from one traditional wedding to the next? The bouquet? The Ed Sheeran song that plays as the first dance?

I don’t want to spend days stressing and planning a wedding to become so blindsighted by planning that reality is taken away from me. I don’t want to focus all my attention on a wedding that may or may not leave me happy but most certainly leave me in debt for a long time.

I don’t want to hit the crash, post wedding where reality hits, the day is done, and suddenly nothing changes bar the Surname. Perhaps I’m a pessimist when it comes to relationships and their ability to withstand a Marriage. I’ve seen all too often the sadness that Marriage can bring and the difficulties that can occur. R

By the way, I don’t think by skipping the whole ceremony that makes me somewhat exempt to any marriage issues. I am fully aware wedded bliss doesn’t last forever or for any couple. We all have our problems.

A wedding doesn’t make or break a relationship and if you believe a wedding will make for a better relationship is a marriage really for you? I’m not going to judge how others plan their wedding and create the day of their dreams. I’m going to focus on creating the day of my dreams as small as that may be. It will be as wonderful to me as any wedding would be to another.

We can’t compare and criticise the way in which we choose to marry.

We are just two people, in love who will someday wed without the big scene and take our vows together as a couple. What could be more romantic? What more does one need?

After all, when the guests pack up and leave, all you are left with is each other and perhaps an array of unnecessary gifts to make space for from the John Lewis wish list. The scent of that Yankee candle won’t solidify your relationship, I’m afraid.

The dress,the awkward and touchy posed photograph’s and the unknown guests who you haven’t been in touch with since Childhood?  I don’t want it. I want to wear a pretty dress, take my vows with only a room of five others and go out for a nice pub meal afterwards. I don’t even want a wedding reception. Hell, I have about three friends, what on Earth do I need an all singing and dancing reception for?

So that’s that, don’t be waiting for an invitation for a Wedding on our behalf because when the day comes, it will be special specifically to us. I’ll share the smartphone snaps with you all at a later date.

Now that I’ve shared my thoughts and plans for the not so big day I’m eager to here from you guys on this. Marriage is a big deal after all and a Wedding day is a day we all hold close to our hearts, I’m sure.

How did you spend your big day? Would you do it all differently if given the chance?

Lots of love.