Italian Sunday {The Ordinary Moments}

In our past lives as a newly living together couple, we had a bit of a habit of having dinner out on a Sunday night. A bit of an end of weekend treat before the working week started.

And more often than not we would go to the Italian restaurant that was round the corner from my mum and dads.

We started to nickname it Italian Sunday.

A restaurant that we have visited to celebrate almost every milestone in my life.

The restaurant I ate in with my friends when we were 15, sharing diet coke and pizzas.

Where we headed to every other Friday night at college because the wine was cheap and as strong as rocket fuel.

The place I celebrated my 18th birthday with my family and a very young husband to be.

The restaurant where we almost got kicked out of for being a bit too loud celebrating the end of our A-levels.

The only place we considered eating on Christmas Eve for around 10 years, largely because you didn’t need to book and (again) the wine was cheap.

The night we found out we were expecting O we had dinner here, before heading off to Asda for a Clearblue Digital (just to make sure).

And as I started my maternity leave we ate here on a very warm October night, for the last time as just a couple.

Every time we enter the restaurant, it is filled with memories.

Meals with best friends and wonderful family.

Every table holds a story.

And now we go as a threesome.

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All set to make new memories.

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Love The Little Things #39

Happy Friday, hope you’ve all had a good week. My little loves have been…

Read I’m still trying to catch up a lot of blog reading and commenting so that’s mostly what I’ve been reading this week. The most moving post of the week goes to Kerri-Ann over at Life As Our a Little Family as she wrote about the premature birth of her gorgeous Lil G. I had tears streaming down my face as I read it. Such a brave mummy, pop over and have a read here.

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Mummy Autopilot Moments

Do you ever have moments when you’re driving somewhere, and your mind wanders, and before you know it you’re half way to work before realising it’s Saturday. Or you’ve read eight pages of your book and haven’t got a clue what’s just happened, you’ve just been turning the pages.

Since becoming a mum I quite often find myself going through the motions without really thinking about what I’m doing.  My brain takes a rest and lets the autopilot take over. And this is what happens when my mummy autopilot light is switched on:

  • I tell colleagues when I’m off for a wee wee (and yes, I do tend to say wee wee!)  I don’t know about you but I’m so used to having to explain where I’m going that it becomes second nature whenever nipping to the toilet, and obviously you have to say it in toddler speak.
  • I’ve watched 3 back to back episodes of Ben and Holly before realising the 2 year old has been in bed for the past hour.

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  • I will give a running commentary of my car ride to work before remembering it’s Monday and the kid is at home with his Grandma.
  • I turn into the bad language police and glare at anyone who utters a swear word before muttering “not in front of the kids” whilst shaking my head.
  • And when I’m not playing swear word cop I turn into the good manners fairy “what’s the magic word?” when someone doesn’t say please.
  • I fill my glass to the brim with full fat milk on a Friday (who am I kidding, Monday) night instead of with wine.

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  • I become incapable of saying the word yoghurt, and instead yell across the supermarket to tell hubby to get some yog yog.
  • In fact, when in mummy autopilot mode it is almost impossible to say a word only once.

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  • When presented with my dinner I start cutting it into small bite size chunks as soon as I get it.
  • I call almost everyone love or sweetheart, which earns me a few funny looks from the 15 year olds in my classroom.
  • My first thought when seeing 18 year olds out on a Friday night in the middle of November without a coat is “Oooh, they must be freezing”, despite refusing to wear a coat myself on a night out until I was at least 23 because I hated queues for the cloakroom at the end of the night.

When so much of your time is spent being mum, it’s hard to snap out of it.  So I guess I’ll just have to put up with the strange looks a little while longer!

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

Sweet Dreams With Dormeo {Review}

One thing you should know about me is that I love my bed. I always have done, even as a kid. My mum always says it was such a huge relief when I came along as my brother never slept.

When I was at college I loved having an afternoon free so I could sneak home watching Light Lunch with Mel and Sue (anyone else remember that?) before having a lovely nap. I was even worse at uni. Whole afternoons were lost watching Diagnosis Murder tucked up in bed.

Needless to say when I was contacted about reviewing a new mattress from Dormeo I jumped at the chance. I’d always been a bit intrigued by memory foam mattresses and whether they were as good as people claimed so was delighted when we allowed to choose one from their Memory Range. I do like a soft mattress so chose the Memory Deluxe.

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I’m a Tough Mudder

It all started on a very warm night back in July. My weight had been steadily creeping up and I was feeling fairly miserable about it. I was chatting to my husband in the garden (over a gin or two) and telling him my summer plans to hit the gym, lose those extra pounds and get back into shape.

“Why don’t you do Tough Mudder?”

At first I thought he’d gone mad. My husband did it last year and he’s a lot fitter than I am. Trying to get to a point where I could run over 11 miles, whilst completing various obstacles and with a whole lot of mud thrown in, in just under 2 months seemed like Mission Impossible.

But he did have a point, I needed something to focus on and work towards. Plus there was a team entering from the gym so I wouldn’t be on my own. So spurred on by the gin I signed up that night before I could change my mind.

A big chunk of my summer holidays have been spent at the gym or getting out running. It’s been hard and there have been days where I really couldn’t be bothered but knowing I had Tough Mudder looming always spurred me on. Sunday morning lie-ins have been replaced with Warrior Training and getting to know the lovely girls (and a few men too) who would be running alongside me.

The weeks have flown and the 13th September arrived. It was a very quiet coach ride on a chilly Saturday morning as we all contemplated what lay ahead, and before we knew it we were arriving.

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There’s a lot to be said for nervous adrenaline as we registered, got our race numbers, drew our numbers on our faces and waited! The buggers make you climb over a wall before you can even get to the start line, but at 8:20am we were off!

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I’m not going to run you through every obstacle, I’ll be here forever, but here are my highlights:

Mud mile – it is what it says it is and when you’re stuck in mud unable to move you need a few friends on hand to help you out. The loveliest thing about Tough Mudder is that there is always someone willing to help, whether you know them or not.

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Arctic Enema – or the ice bath. The Big Mr had warned me about this and said that none of the girls he had completed it with had managed to go under the tyres (you climb in and then have to swim under tyres to get to the other end). You can come out the side if you want. I hate being cold and this is one of the obstacles I had been dreading. I know that hubby expected me to climb straight out the side.

They’re not kidding when they say it’s cold, I climbed in and could feel myself starting to panic. I hung onto the side trying to regulate my breathing, whilst one of the men in charge came over to tell the lady volunteer they were behind schedule and to get people out if they weren’t going under. There was no way I was getting out, I stared him, “I’m doing this” It’s amazing the strength you get when trying to prove your husband wrong!

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And the lowlights:

Hero Walls – the elation at climbing up a 12 foot wall, with a bit of help, soon vanished when instead of delicately lowering myself down I slipped and went down like a sack of sh*t. At least it provided a bit of a giggle for those around me!

Everest – despite four attempts and managing to grab someone’s hand three times I still couldn’t manage to get to the top!

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It was tough and about 4 miles in I honestly thought I wasn’t going to finish, and if you’d asked me if I’d ever do another one the answer would have been a definite NO! But after hitting the 6 mile mark with a very welcome Energy Bar stand to refuel I started to believe I could get to the end.

Nothing beats that feeling when you see the finish line and are heading towards it. The only downside being that you are heading towards it through a sea of wires all set to give you an electric shock!

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There have been quite a lot of pictures from the event and what hits me when looking at them is how much we are all smiling.  The bad moments fade away and the lasting memories are the good ones. The ones where we were laughing and helping each other and applauding as we conquered another obstacle, or just managed to get unstuck from a pile of stinking mud.

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A few years ago the thought of being covered in mud from head to toe would have sent me into a mild panic but it has been one of the best (and most fun) things I’ve ever done, so yes, I will be back for more. I’ve already signed up to do Survival of the Fittest in November and I’m sure I’ll be doing another Tough Mudder one day. If only to get to the top of Everest!

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Not My Year Off

Sunshine Before Bed {The Ordinary Moments}

One of the reasons I love Katie’s Ordinary Moments linky is that it makes me record those moments that may currently seem so routine, sometimes almost mundane, but moments that will inevitably end and become a memory in our family life.

One of those moments is bedtime.  I can probably count using just my hands the occasions where I haven’t put my little boy to bed.  It’s one of my favourite times of the day.  Apart from the obvious reasons (a chance to take a breath and watch something other than Ben & Holly), I love being the last person he sees at night and we have our little bedtime routine going on.

Story time first and then we snuggle down for a quick verse of You Are My Sunshine.  I’ve been singing it to him for about a year now and over the past six months as his speech and memory had developed he’s started to join in. As soon as the story has finished he asks for, “Sunshine, mummy”

The volume of the song is dictated by how tired he is.  Sometimes we belt it out, and other times it’s barely more than a whisper, but a night doesn’t go by without our little duet and it melts my heart every evening.

I dread the day he no longer wants to sing with Mummy before bed, so for now I’ll continue to treasure every out of tune note we sing. And one day he may realise the line isn’t that the “clouds are brave”, although I think I prefer his version.

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