I can't believe I'm writing this given it only feels like yesterday we eagerly anticipated your arrival, wondering who you'd be and how you'd change the dynamic of our little family of three. Nothing could have prepared us for you though, my fierce, wild boy - the child that ultimately had we had you first, I'm not sure we'd have considered a second. You're testing but you're worth every single challenge you throw our way, and believe me there have been many. I knew during your first year that your personality was shining through and as predicted, over the last twelve months it's grown even more - you've come completely into your own and turned from a baby to a toddler (welp!)


The weeks lately have been hectic, I say weeks but it's probably been more months if I'm being entirely honest. I spoke about it briefly on Instagram, you know the analogy of being a duck seemingly gliding through the water but actually beneath the surface they're furiously pedalling with no signs of slowing down. That's me, I'm the duck. There isn't one specific thing nor are there any huge reasons as to why life is so full on right now, it just is and with Noah about to break up for school break in just over four weeks, I know it's going to get a whole lot busier, so with that in mind I wanted to really flick the brakes on and try and appreciate the art of slow living, even if my version of slow is more like a canter.


As a full time blogger a large portion of my job requires social media activity, I'd probably guess it around half. Whilst the likes of Instagram and Facebook are a bit of fun for most people, it may seem that it's the 'easy' part of the job, but you'd be mistaken for thinking that. Posting a quick photo with a seemingly fitting caption isn't the hard task, though capturing said photos can be, it's building a loyal and engaging following - that's the difficult part. There may be a small amount of social media influences who gained a following quickly and authentically for one reason or another, but the majority have to work hard at it day after day, and it can be a pretty gruelling task, especially today in a era of bots and fake followings.


I think as parents it's part and parcel to feel bittersweet as you watch your babies grow. I'm always so scared of missing moments that I'll never get back or forgetting the way their voice sounded at a certain age. Whilst there is so many key points that stand out from the past four years of motherhood for me, there are so many that don't too, it doesn't mean they weren't as important or valuable to me, but that's just how life works.


If you've been around for a moment, you'll know that strawberry picking was on my summer bucket list for the year. Nothing pleases me more than ticking something off pretty promptly, so we decided to do that by heading to a local pick your own farm in the East Midlands. Our farm of choice was the School Farm near Retford, after visiting last year on our second pumpkin picking mission, we noticed that they were opening for the strawberry season and we couldn't resist. I wasn't sure how much they'd have and if there would be any that were truly pick-able, but thankfully the ripe strawberries were plentiful and we managed to fill our baskets up with ease.


Where do I start with Sundown? It's undoubtedly our favourite place to visit with the boys, and has been that way for almost four years now. I could shout and scream from the rooftops about it all day, every day, but instead I save that for my Instagram stories when I visit. If you've never heard of Sundown Adventureland, it's a theme park specifically targeted at the under 10's, situated between Retford and Lincoln in the East Midlands. A stark contrast to most other theme parks I know which usually have a small area for the little riders in your group, and generally focus on adults and teens for the rest of the park. Sundown is a toddlers dream, and as an owner of two small children, it's my dream too because they're both completely in their element when we visit. Just last week we weighed up the options of what to do for the day on Patricks birthday, it was a no brainer, and off we went to Sundown.


Am I allowed to use the word summer? I'm going to anyway as when we gain one day warmer than twenty degrees in my head I've already predetermined the season, and by that reasoning, we're in summer. I do love the lighter evenings it makes the days feel so much longer and that somehow we've gained all these extra hours of activity that we don't have in the winter months. The ability to step out the front door without having to round up matching gloves, a hat, welly boots and a coat is something of a novelty now after what felt like the longest cold snap in history - I'm still not over the snow in April.


I spy with my little eye, something a little different about myself. You wouldn't be wrong for double glancing and wondering what's different, but spoiler alert - it's my eyes. I think I've harped on enough in the past how indecisive and fickle I can be when it comes to anything from interior decor, what candle to light in the house or what shoes to wear. My eye colour doesn't elude this trait of mine unfortunately. I've dabbled in wearing contacts throughout the years but more recently it's been for a reason, such as Halloween, rather than a fashion statement or wanting to shake up my appearance.  That's not to say I haven't really felt out of love with having brown eyes, they're boring to me, which I'm sure everyone feels about their own - my hair falls into the same category, I've always wished my curly mane was less Worzel Gummidge and more sleek, straight and shiny, whilst my friends would call me crazy and use every curling wand possible to recreate what fell naturally to me - you always think the grass is greener don't you? We can pop into a hair salon and let the assistant go wild with the scissors, any colour under the sun is just about doable these days and the same can be said for our nails but there is something that holds me back when it comes to my eyes, after all you only get one pair, so whilst I was looking to give them a little spruce up it was important to me that I chose a reliable brand to do so with.


We're less than a week away from Patricks' birthday, and whilst that's a huge celebration for him it's also a big one for our family - it marks two whole years since we turned from a three to a four. It's been a whirlwind it really has, it still feels as though I have the right to refer to myself as 'postpartum' twenty four months down the line because truthfully, those have been the quickest twenty four months of my life. It feels like yesterday we welcomed Patrick into the world and whilst I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat for him, I can't lie and say it's been the easiest two years of my life because that wouldn't be honest. Likening it to a roller coaster is the only similarity that fawns a resemblance to our journey.


Over the month of April I feel as though every post I did was very specific, there was a lot of travel and child related content and not very much of anything else. Whilst I love reading that type of thing myself, I'm all to aware it can become a bit tedious for others who tune in and so I wanted to shake things up by sharing some simple facts about us, that I can't recall ever discussing over here. I love personal posts, it's one of the reasons I fell in love with blogging as opposed to magazines, because I could feel the person behind the words, to me they had more clout.