Mabel has been a bit poorly this week. She was ok on Monday, so we went to ballet as usual. But by the time she got up on Tuesday morning she obviously wasn’t right, so she had a day off of pre-school.   On Thursday she woke up full of beans so we let her go in, but by lunchtime they were ringing me to say she wasn’t herself and had been crying for me. Is there anything more heartbreaking than the idea of your child crying for you when you’re not there?   As soon as I got the phone call I made a dash for preschool, luckily it’s only up the road. Greta was still in her PJs so I just threw a coat on over the top and chucked her in the buggy and we went as we were. Anyone would think she’d had some kind of major accident the way I darted up the road. I’m sure the neighbours just thought ‘there goes that crazy lady with her rainbow buggy and a baby strapped to her chest again. Why is she looking so panicked today?’.   I felt so guilty that when I got her home…

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You know I love a list, I mean who doesn’t love a list? Writing a list makes you feel all organised and efficient, like yeah I am a woman who knows what she is doing in life because I have a list. Ticking things off the list is obviously the aim, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The first step towards world domination is just to write the list. Now I’m very used to writing practical lists. Shopping lists, to do lists (dress children, dress self, feed children, if time then feed self…), blog posts to write, messes to clean etc. etc. You know how it works, you have loads of stuff to do, you write it down, you feel better about it. So I’m thinking, can making lists out of my problems help me in anyway? Maybe if I write down the things that I’m having trouble with in list form, I’ll be able to deal with them in bite sized chunks and the answers will magically appear to me? Anyway I’m willing to give it ago. So from now on I’ll be joining Aby at You baby me mummy and Amy at Mr and Mrs T plus three every Friday and…

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In my life these days, pretty much everything is up for negotiation. From what I eat (‘ok Mummy, I will eat my peas only if I can have some of your fish cake’), to where I go (‘come on Greta, if you come to the shop with me we can go to the park afterwards?’), even what mindless rubbish I infect my brain with (‘right 1 more Peppa Pig guys and then Mummy’s watching Jeremy Kyle’). I’m pretty proud of the negotiation skills I’ve developed actually. I’m almost certain that if I were ever in a hostage situation, I would make it out alive with a kiss on the cheek and an apology, because surely there’s nothing harder in this world than trying to convince a toddler to wear wellies and a coat, when they want to wear sunglasses and sandals. Compromise is the name of the game right? You’ve got to give a little to get a little as the old saying goes. Example: ‘Of course you can wear those sunglasses and that sun hat darling, as long as the rest of your outfit is weather appropriate I really don’t mind’. Negotiation, every parent is an expert at it. So…

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So today the story about the mum who was asked to leave John Lewis because of her tantruming toddler has caught my eye. First of all I thought oh man, that is going to happen to me one day and when it does I am going to cry, Greta has some epic meltdowns when she’s tired. But then I thought it’s ok though, they’ve apologised, it was just one crazy person acting out of line, everyone else will be morally outraged and probably even start being nicer to me when Greta is throwing a hissy fit in public, hurrah! But apparently not so, because twitter was full of people agreeing with the John Lewis worker. And I’m not entirely surprised to be honest because I’ve seen the looks and I’ve heard the tutting and I’ve been there pleading, begging her to stop, throwing sweets at her and promising her a pony if she will just be quiet so people will stop staring. So, to those people with all of the judgement but none of the answers, can we just clear something up? Tantrums are normal. Toddlers don’t have tantrums becuase they are naughty, they don’t have tantrums because their parents can’t control them, and they don’t have tantrums…

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I love that we’re getting in the habit now of doing a special activity just for Greta every Tuesday. Being the middle child, I do worry that she’s going to feel a bit overlooked, so I like to make a special effort for her when I can. Doing a messy activity once a week is just about manageable now Mabel is at preschool and Ernie is a bit older and goes a bit longer between feeds. Trying to do it any more often would be detrimental to my sanity, so I think once a week is enough. So today I just grabbed some paint and squeezed it onto the builders tray and then popped a bowl of plastic marbles in the middle. I didn’t put any paper in because I always find it gets too wet and rips, and then I have to find somewhere for it to dry, only for it to be thrown away a week later when I get fed up of it on the kitchen table. Sad but true. As usual, she surprised me by starting small. She was excited to get going though and picked up a marble and started dipping it in the different colours…

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Like any respectable crazy pregnant lady (or is this just me?) I hoarded clothes in all sizes for Ernie while I was still pregnant. Before he was even born he had at least 10 outfits in each size, up to 12 months. It made me feel prepared (you are never really prepared). The down side of this is that now I don’t get to do any more shopping, and buying clothes for my children is one of my favourite things to do. I also have to mostly put up with what I bought 6 months ago, before I had any idea of what he would look like or how quickly he would grow (really quickly, it turns out). I probably am going to have to buy a few more bits, because at this rate he’s going to be wearing his winter wardrobe in August. Good job it was all bargains :eye roll: So I’ve been busy checking out the Spring collections in my favourite shops anyway, and I thought I’d put together a spring style wish list of things I would buy for Ernie’s 3-6 month wardrobe if I hadn’t been so crazy prepared, and got it all ages ago in…

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‘You are the bows from which your children as living arrows, are sent forth’ Kahlil Gibran The Living Arrows photo project is about celebrating childhood by capturing it in a photograph once a week. I will be joining in with a photo each of Mabel, Greta and Ernie, hopefully using it as a way to improve my photography skills, as well as creating a lovely collection of photos for us to look back on at the end of the year. This week we took our photos at the park. I had planned to go somewhere more exciting like the forest country park, or the beach, but it just didn’t happen. Somehow we got to lunchtime with the kids still in their pyjamas, and by the time everyone was fed and dressed it just wasn’t worth going too far afield. This is life with three children (or maybe any amount of children, I can’t remember), there’s just no point getting your heart set on doing something, because half the time something else will get in the way. And when that happens you have the choice of either trying to stick to plan A and getting really stressed, someone will shout (usually me) and some…

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So….. everyone’s allowed two off-days right? I did not wake up feeling fresh as a daisy on Saturday morning like I’d hoped, and so the day didn’t exactly go to plan. It turns out I had a bit of a cold as well as the general Mummy exhaustion, so I needed a bit more than the 5 hours sleep that I had managed to get, to recover fully. Luckily for me, I have an absolute gem of a husband, who despite being only slightly less tired than me, got up with the kids at 6am and left me in bed. Where I stayed for most of the morning. I know, I thought Mother’s Day had come a day early! I’d love to say it was blissfully relaxing, I really would, but that would be a lie. I mean, I was as relaxed as a Mum can be when all three of her children are still in the house. I did manage a bit more sleep in between having Ernie brought to me for feeds what seemed like every hour, having the girls run in and jump on top off me and put their COLD feet on me, and hearing the bangs…

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