Saturday, 28 February 2015

LIFE AS IT IS - This week in... February 2015


This week in February 2015... 

...I discovered that the architect we just employed likes a chat; that ailing fish need mushy peas; my youngest - who has great designs on Banksy - is unable to physically hear at the moment due to mountainous clumps of ear wax; that my father is well again after a double clot on the lung; that my husband is my reason for being; and, that my children are my life.

Friday, 27 February 2015

The importance of being Esme

Currently my eldest is coming through a state of hormonal flux. I know this for several reasons, not least because I looked up tantrums and discovered they commonly occur at ages 2-3 (no great shakes there), 6-7 (ta-dah) and 11-12 (and yes, forever more thereafter).

I am very aware that I need to always take the time to nurture my children's ability to love themselves. Especially Esme, my sensitive 6YO.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Eat your greens - or at least your peas (A fishy tale II)

Not so long ago, Sofia happened to the fish

It may interest you to know that said traumatised fish has now taken up residence in Leicester Square, at Ripley's Believe It Or Not.

Don't be ridiculous, of course it hasn't. But amazingly, it has defied all the odds and is alive, and what's more, appears to be happy in its existence. A once again seemingly healthy existence. All down to its new diet of veg.

Since peas were on the menu, Fishy is unbelievably active again. No really quite tanked up. Somersaulting, looping the loop with a little half twist thrown in here and there. I believe the new tall weed may have helped - and the salt too. And, okay let's face it, its swim bladder is still not 100%, helping Fishy rise to the occasion, but overall, the peas have ultimately given Fishy a new lease of life - as well as an additional aerodynamic skill set.

I can therefore report, resorting to the recommended remedy of mushed up peas results in remarkable recovery in fish that may have been traumatised by tightly gripping three-year-old wannabe hairdressers, styling fins with plastic dolly hair brushes.

Friday, 20 February 2015

Shaun the sheep, Southbank & Supper (& Best Western hotels)

Friday already and as our half term holiday draws to a close, on reflection it has been a totally relaxing week of family, fun, friends, and now film - for yesterday we were invited up to town to watch a screening of the new Shaun the Sheep movie, sat in the very beautiful surrounds of the One (and only) Aldwych Hotel. In the private cinema room. Blimey. How nice was that? And with as much popcorn as we wanted - salt or sweet. Mmm, tough choice. The girls were on great form. So was Shaun. And if you haven't seen it yet, it's well worth a watch. I laughed out loud a lot - and rather wonderfully, so did the girls. The whole thing was hosted by Best Western Hotels - clearly a child friendly brand offering breaks with personality - and like Shaun - resulting in a feel good family experience. 

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Simple step by step dress-up ideas for World Book Day

World Book Day is coming, celebrate with great costume ideas

Not all of us are good at throwing fancy-dress together for the kids. I get it. Fortunately, I also get PRs giving me amazing costumes like this to advertise for them in the form of a review. However, if I didn't have something for the GraceFaith girls to wear on World Book Day, I would head to where there are lots of ideas to help kit the kids out this 5th MarchTo make it that little bit easier, the charity has produced dress-up sheets like these below, with easy step-by-step instructions, to get the kids ready. It's all for a very good cause, so donate £1 to school, spread the word and get involved...

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

World Book Day - What it's really about

World Book Day & Book Aid International

Every year, Book Aid International provides up to one million new books donated by UK publishers to libraries in sub-Saharan Africa. Two thirds of these books are for children, many of whom do not own a single book and may never have seen a picture book before a delivery from Book Aid International to their library or school. 

UK schools have been long-term supporters of Book Aid International’s work and give their support by fundraising each year on World Book Day. Last year, children and schools from the UK and around the world raised a record-breaking £137,000 - I know, loads - to help send more books to libraries in Africa. Great cause. To find out more, visit 

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

The flipping proof - A first ever (homemade vlog & pancake)

Cut off in my prime - but I'm saying: "It looks good to me."

FRAMED - A vision of success

So yesterday I bumped into Aussie Karla, who told me: 
"Em. No recipe needed. Pancakes are easy -
You just need one egg to one cup of plain flour, and add milk." 
Turns out, I added water and put a little dance into the mix too. 
And hey presto... look who can cook pancakes! 
Thanks Karl! 
P.S. Well done girls. Well done Godson. Well done Cuz. Was fun. x

Monday, 16 February 2015

Traditional Pancakes - how to get perfect results (without cheating)


"Mummy puts a pancake on the ceiling"

Throughout previous years as both a mother and a trained nanny, my culinary pancake skills have been well and truly tested, and in the end I'm afraid I've given up and succumbed each and every time, to the all in one method. (Add water to the container that already contains everything else, shake and pour, fry and eat). If you want to smile, you can read about one such disaster here.

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Happy Valentines - allergic awakenings

Woke this morning to the remnants of my daughter's vomit stuck to me.
Up for two hours in the night as she repeatedly threw up whatever it was that had not agreed with her.
Poor Sofia. Was the first time she has ever been sick, and she was totally freaked.
I cuddled her in.
Vomit and all.
I lay with her in her cot bed (interesting), and waited for the allergic response to pass.
Her breathing to return to normal, her slumber to finally catch up with her.
I berated myself for not giving her the anti-histamine earlier.
If only I had turned on the light, I would have seen her hive covered face.
I think it may have been the posh Madagascan custard. Or was it the fruit in the crumble?
Anyway, this morning, when I first opened my eyes, I wondered if my Valentine had sprinkled rose petals on my pillow.
Then my conscious returned.
And as I caught the stagnant hum of puke in my hair, it was then that I realised.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Keeping kids busy this half term - with Flora Buttery

The recipe for a busy half term holiday with the kids

There is nothing better, as far as my two little girls are concerned, than to do some baking with Mummy. Take yesterday for example, we made brownies chocolate goo for the Valentines cake sale at school (we forgot to add cocoa powder). They still tasted gorgeous! 

The wet weather today, may well lay in store for us all next week. Such a drag. The February half term can be difficult for us parents, not only in terms of the weather, but also in terms of money and of course, what to do with the children to keep busy.

According to Flora Buttery, who carried out some recent research: 

Although 32% of mums are still feeling the pinch following Christmas, the Feb half-term break sees them spend most on: 

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Healing homeopathic medicine - Arnica (Nelsons Arnicare)

The healing properties of Arnica (Nelsons Arnicare)

The Arnica Montana plant is mainly found in Europe, and is a relative of the sunflower. It is the flower of the plant that is used to make the medicine which can be taken in tablet form or applied to the skin for pain and swelling associated with bruises, aches, sprains and arthritis. Interestingly, most of us assume it's only for bruising, but it can be used topically on insect bites, muscle and cartilage pain, chapped lips, and even acne. I took the tablets during labour, (at the advice of my midwife), but on this occasion I used it for...

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

A private matter...

In the last couple of weeks, Esme Grace (my loving 6yo), has adopted a new vigour for testing her parents. But, in a solitary moment of tender calm last night, the following was shared:

M: I love you so much Esme. I am so glad that you are mine, and that I am the one that gets to look after you. 

E: (Turning to hug me) And I love you so much Mummy. And I am so glad, that I am the one that came out of your bottom. 

Sunday, 8 February 2015

6/52 The GraceFaith year long art project

Choosing a favourite piece of art, each week of the year

Yesterday we went to see where Daddy works at Heathrow airport. It was a very exciting day. We had lunch watching the aeroplanes come into land. Here are the GraceFaith girl's drawings of just that.



Saturday, 7 February 2015

A trip to the airport...

Heathrow Airport... and where Daddy works

Usually when we arrive as a family at Heathrow, it is to check in and fly. Today however, we went for a look behind the scenes at the hub where hub works. A day out which was very different. We had fun - the girls in particular had a great time - I was desperately wishing for an anorak to match my husband's by the end of it. I jest. There were bits of the airport that were really interesting. Bits that were even exciting. And bits that were brilliant (these included coffee and food). Perhaps the best bit of all though, was the look on Daddy's face, when he asked Esme and Sofia if they wanted to see another terminal and his girls both shouted yes, after already having been on a bus, two trains, and trudged around for what felt like forever. Love that! Here is our time in pictures so that we always remember the day we went to Daddy's work.

Friday, 6 February 2015

LIFE AS IT IS Changes its URL - was that smart or stupid?

LIFE AS IT IS changes its URL and becomes

I finally went and did it.

Changed my 1grace1faith url to something else.



Wednesday, 4 February 2015

The Vintage Blanket by iCandy - A review

When iCandy asked LIFE AS IT IS to review one of their luxurious baby blankets, I had to take them up on the offer. Even if the proud owner would already be 3 and a 1/4 years of age.


The Vintage Blanket by iCandy
Designed in: Two colour options - pink or blue
Available from: iCandy & other leading outlets
Made from: 80% lambswool and 20% nylon
Priced: £80
Machine washable: Yes
Dimensions: 100cm x 78cm

iCandy have launched accessories. Good for them. And clearly good for us too. For as is usual with this special baby brand, the i for detail is second to none.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

What have you done today to make you feel proud?

‘From a Mother to Another’

Hubbub, JoJo Maman Bébé and leading children’s charity Barnardo’s are proud to present From a Mother to Another, launched today & asking mothers to gift good-quality, unwanted baby & children’s clothing to other mothers in the UK in the run up to Mother’s Day. 

Clothing can be handed in to any JoJo store between now and 15th March.