I love the west country, I’ve holidayed in Devon and Cornwall since I was little, it’s such a beautiful part of the world and we’re so lucky to have it relatively on our doorstep. Even though we live on the south coast, its still a long old haul to get down there, all on A roads, and the traffic is usually heavy, especially on a bank holiday or if there’s any hint of sunshine. I’ve spent many a bored hour stuck in a car as a child, but what I didn’t appreciate then, was quite how excruciating the journey was for the adults in the car. Travelling with young children is a challenge at the best of times, a long car journey with three under fours, where I have to sit in the back, squashed between two car seats, is one of the hardest endurance tests I have ever faced (and I was once in slow labour for three days). I do find though, it just makes you all the more happy to finally arrive at your destination, sometimes deliriously so. And, much like labour, soon after it’s over you forget quite how horrifying it was and are already thinking about doing it…

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Of course, we have been away in Devon at the Manor House Hotel this week, hence the lack of blog posts etc. sorry not sorry. We’ve had a really lovely week and although it wasn’t quite the answer to all our problems that I was hoping for (the kids still argued and they still woke me up far too early in the morning), it was most definitely the break away we all needed and I felt an awful lot happier and more contented (but unfortunately still just as squashed) sitting in the back middle seat of that car on the way home, than I did on the way there. There were lots of lovely things to be happy about this week, but it’s just a short happy list today because I’m going to write up our holiday in a full review post soon and I will include most of it in that. Ernie had his first experience of a swimming pool while we were on holiday this week. It was lovely to be able to have that special moment together as a family. The pool wasn’t very busy at all, there were only a few other children in there so it was…

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So Easter is nearly here, and with it yet another excuse to dress the kids up in silly outfits, decorate the house in garish rubbish, and make sure that all of your activities revolve around the theme. It’s brilliant, I love it! Any excuse for a celebration and I’m there. With a cake. We celebrate Easter as more of way to welcome Spring and the new life all around us, rather than as a religious holiday and I’m actually kind of happy about the commercialization of it all. It means that I can get so many different bits and bobs from the shops to help get us in the Easter spirit. I don’t like to spend lots of money on things like this, but it makes it a lot easy to be able to buy a few cheap and cheerful accessories, rather than have to make everything from scratch. So last week I took a trip down to Poundland while Mabel was in Preschool. There was a huge range of Easter themed goodies, I managed to spend £12 somehow, oops! I then headed to Aldi where they had some lovely Easter choccies (and some beautiful Tulips I couldn’t resist) and Greta screamed…

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Before Mabel was born we decided that she was going to wear cloth nappies. I’d worked in a nursery for years and seeing all those hundreds of bags of disposable nappies being thrown away made me feel bad, so I looked for an alternative. I think a lot of people (thanks mum) thought we would change our mind once she was actually born, but after the first week or so when all the meconium was out of her system we switched over and never looked back. She wore reusable nappies until she was potty trained at 22 months. We even had a couple of months after Greta was born when we had the two of them both in cloth nappies and still it didn’t put us off. Greta was a heavier wetter than Mabel so she wore disposables over night, but during the day she was in cloth until she potty trained too (well until now when I’ve had to put her into disposable pull ups but that’s another story). I loved my cloth nappies in all their pretty prints and bright colours. I know it sounds weird but there really is nothing more satisfying in life than a draw…

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Both Mabel and Greta (and myself but that’s another story), were well overdue a hair cut. Mabel has had a grand total of two hair cuts in her 3 years 11 months, and Greta was yet to have her first. Today was the day that they were both booked in, and I couldn’t wait to get them looking a tiny bit tidier. Carl has been going to the same hairdresser since he was a little boy, a family friend who lives on his parent’s road and cuts hair in a room at the back of her house. Most of his family go to Kim for their haircuts, so it was only natural for the girls to follow suit when the time came. She’s a really lovely lady with a love of leopard print and I couldn’t imagine taking the girls anywhere else for their hair cuts. Mabel was the first to take the chair, being a relative old hand, while Greta watched on and span on her stool. Mabel has beautiful, glossy, thick hair. When she was a toddler it fell in big bouncy ringlets and everyone used to ask me if I styled it that way. Now she’s older it’s more wavy…

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On my Facebook page last week I shared this post… Yesterday the sun was shining, Carl had the afternoon off work, I remembered that we live 10 minutes from the frickin… Posted by Squished Blueberries on Saturday, 12 March 2016 And I must have taken it pretty seriously because on Monday I decided that we need a holiday and we need it now and by Friday it was booked for this coming Monday! I am so exited! I think doing things last minute makes them even more fun because you don’t get a chance to think about the practicalities and the downsides, you just go for it and it all works itself out somehow. Yesterday I did a bit of a grumpy post about all the reasons I feel like we need some family time at the moment. So today in true Happy Days style, I am only focusing on the positives, starting with the main one…. While I was trawling through the Internet looking for somewhere for us to escape to next week, I came across the Manor House Hotel. It looked perfect with everything we need to keep the kids happy (soft play – check! Swimming pool with slides –…

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I’ve been feeling restless recently. There’s lots of things that have been niggling at me and just don’t feel right. I don’t know if it’s just me that feels like this sometimes, but I just find myself wanting to pause the never ending conveyor belt of life for a few days. I feel like I need some breathing space. I feel like as a family, we need some time to just be together, away from the stresses of normal life. So on Monday, I told Carl to book next week off work and I’m trying my hardest to sort out a little holiday for us. We won’t be going abroad, the kids don’t have passports for a start, plus I need to build up slowly to a flight with 3 children in tow. I don’t know exactly where we are going yet or for how long. In fact we haven’t booked anything yet. I have a few ideas in the pipeline but nothing confirmed at the moment. But whether we are in a full board hotel for the week, or in a seaside B&B for a couple of nights, or even in a drafty static caravan on a holiday park, it…

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Ok so I’m just going to come clean about this straight away. I forgot about doing a siblings post this month. I know, I’m a bad blogger! I’ll put next month’s on the calendar now. So anywho,  that’s how we’ve ended up with these not so brilliant photos of the gang cuddled up on the sofa with messy hair because I literally just said ‘quick I need to take a photo of the three of you’ dumped Ernie in the middle of the girls and snapped a few pictures. I probably should have had a look at what I’d got before I put the camera away…. But a really sweet sibling moment did happen today when I was in the kitchen and Ernie started crying in the front room. I came back in to find Greta had taken his nappy off because it had a little poo in it. She’s always doing slightly crazy, completely unexpected and extremely sweet things like that. Well, when she’s not peeing on the floor and shouting ‘ONE MORE PEPPA PIG!!’. The one thing I’ve noticed this month is quite how much Greta idolises her big sister. Even when Mabel isn’t here she talks about her constantly…

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