Animal kingdom

Today when the boys came home from nursery I had an animal kingdom set up for them.

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I thought to myself as I eagerly awaited their return, ‘They are going to love this safari land’. Noah runs in and instantly shouts ‘wow mummy a farm’ (close enough).

We got loads of the straw from a gift hamper at Christmas so I kept it knowing we would find uses for it in our activities. I’m eager to see what uses we can make of it at easter. I then used one of Tommy’s bedsheets for the water (quick thinking mama).

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First we discussed what animals might be friends and we grouped them together. Then we thought about where they might live. If it would be in the water, near it, hiding in the desert grass or by the trees.

 

Noah and Tommy then had lots of fun hiding the animals, and even more pulling the straw apart to look for them. We also practiced our animal sounds.

Afterwards we turned our safari land into a dinosaur kingdom for even more fun.

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Copyright © 2018 All right reserved Stephanie Brady

Not just mum

So this year I hadn’t set any new years resolutions. I did however start a day out a month challenge to make more wonderful memories with the boys. Especially as this is my last year off with them before I return to full-time work, plus Noah starts school in September anyway.

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Will you join us in our day out a month challenge? Tag us on instagram and us the hashtag #adayoutamonth

But scrolling through Instagram this morning, one thing that was recurrent was lots of mummies desiring to make more time for themselves. It got me thinking that actually I need to do the same. We spend so much time being mum, the demanding role that it is, that sometimes we forget that we are a whole other person as well. We are not JUST mum! For anyone reading this I highly recommend checking out the bubba.club’s Self Care January Challenge.

Relax

I absolutely love a bubble bath to unwind when the boys are in bed. Add a face mask and a bath bomb and I’m in heaven! I definitely need to start doing this more often and give myself a little pamper for some well deserved me time.

Any recommendations for pamper products? Or better yet any recipes for homemade ones? I only use cruelty free brands now!

Read

I LOVE to read, but for the past six years 95% of my reading has looked a lot like this…

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So last year I attempted to start reading a book a month. I’m not proud to admit that I failed. I am going to try again this year, and I will succeed (she says). Now both boys are at nursery it’s certainly more realistic! I got some of the Disney Villain’s and Disney Twisted Tale’s for my birthday. I managed to read a few (which were fantastic!) so they are at the top of my list.

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I’ve already read As Old as Time, The Beast Within and A Whole New World. I started Once Upon a Dream so that is first on my list to finish.

Any recommendations for other good reads?

Film

I’m a proper film buff and love watching a good movie. In fact I don’t watch normal telly unless the kids have something on. And with the kids majority of the films I watch these days are for them! Therefore I plan to watch one film a week that is for me when they are in bed.

I have Prime and Netflix subscriptions so I have plenty of choice. I also signed up to a free three-month trial with Amazon Prime’s StarzPlay. If you haven’t done so already I recommend you do too.

I would also love to hear any film recommendations you have as well!

Self Care

I rarely do my hair and make up these days #mumlife! But I always feel so much better about myself when I do. I plan to make the effort more days a week than not from now on. I also desperately need a good cut. My hair is below my waist but it is in terrible condition. I’m considering having a whole restyle, what do you think? I’m also growing out an old colour from years ago, so the ends are much lighter. So I’m thinking of a colour as well.

Take a Break

I spend 99% of my day tidying toys away, only to walk out of the room and find they have mysteriously exploded all over the floor again! Anyone else? I know I should just leave it until the end of the day but I find myself doing it multiple times. I vow to really try to stop doing this. It gets stressful and is completely pointless anyway!

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I’d honestly just put all that away, and they aren’t even playing with it!

Sleep better

Sleep more! This is a definite must. Where I have been doing my degree for the past six years, and the last three of which I have had children. I often find myself up until the early hours studying. I literally run off coffee most of the time. Now both the boys are at nursery I can spend those precious fifteen hours a week studying instead of studying through the night. I know this is going to make an absolute massive difference to my weeks. Not to mention I’m probably going to study better as well. From now on I plan to get an early night at least once a week. After all a well rested mum is much more fun than a tiered one.

Eat better 

I’m officially all sugared out from Christmas, we’ve lived off junk for the past few weeks and it’s starting to take its toll. From now on we are back to eating healthier food and homemade grub.

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I made this earlier and Noah asked me why I was eating leaves!

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Homemade slow cooked pork curry for dinner tonight. Yum.

Exercise more

Now my theory is if I’m sleeping better then I should have more energy for this one. I’m very active and I walk a lot as I don’t drive. But even so a bit of exercise is so important for well-being. I always feel much happier and more energetic after a workout. I want to start putting aside at least 30 minutes, three times a week.

Give myself a pat on the back

Finally I want to regularly take time to remind myself of all the things I have achieved and am currently achieving. Probably the proudest for me is continuing with my studies after having the boys. It’s blooming hard being a mummy who studies. But this is the year I finally finish my degree! I’m smashing it.

 

Copyright © 2018 All rights reserved Stephanie Brady

Why is role play so important?

We’ve been poorly with yet another cold, so we’ve been staying in the warm and entertaining ourselves indoors. With the Christmas decorations down we have alot more space, so we set up shops today. We set up baskets filled with items to buy as well as a trolley and basket bay.

The boys had lots of fun browsing the different items and choosing what they were going to put in their trolley and basket. Tommy even took his baby shopping.

Role play is wonderful for the imagination, but it also helps develop communication and social skills. Playing shops also encourages development with numbers when paying for their goods.

We even explored problem solving when Noah couldn’t fit his shopping bag onto his bike with him. He hooked it onto the back! Yes we even had the bike and jeep involved, driving to and from the shop. Their coordination skills need improvement that’s for sure. I genuinely fear for my furniture (and my feet)!

We also got crafty before this even begun and designed our own shopping bags with canvas bags and fabric pens.

What’s your favourite role play?

 

Copyright © 2018 All rights reserved Stephanie Brady