This New Year I’m giving myself an honour!

New Year’s eve. You’re here again my friend. Reminding me yet another year has come and gone, and I swear I say this every time but this year really really has flown by in the blink of an eye!

This time last year I was heavily pregnant with L, about to embark on potty training my just turned 2 year old in a bid to prevent our utility room from becoming swamped in more nappies than there definitely was room for.

And here I am sitting in the very early hours of the morning drinking coffee with my threenager who is watching YouTube in my phone (parenting the sh*t out of life skills right there but absolutely necessary for any pre caffeine early wake up!) and watching my not so littlest whose just about to turn 11 months scaling the sofa at his brothers feet, and I’m looking at them and think wow, I’ve grown these two children! How did that happen??

I’m also thinking, yeah any second now there’s gonna be an epic fall out as one child tries to grab the phone off the other and I’m sitting here watching it happen in slow motion, letting it happen because I’m just a little bit too tired to get up out of my chair and also secretly want to see who wins out the two of them…

This year has been my second maternity leave, baby and toddler and mummy at home together making memories and I can honestly say I’ve absolutely loved it.

But I can also honestly say it’s been absolutely crazy and ridiculously difficult. Beyond challenging and at some times all too much.

I had all these hopes and dreams for my year, pre baby number two, in my head, but the reality of raising two young children as your ‘day job’ and ‘night job’ certainly had different ideas!

I didn’t make yummy home-cooked meals every night and we’d all sit round the table wolfing it down.

Many, many, many meals were potato waffle and turkey dinosaur freezer based products for toddler and ready made pouches for baby.

Mummy and Daddy ate cheese and carb based crap much, much later, trying to watch something on the telly, in shifts because littlest just doesn’t like to sleep.

I didn’t become the domestic goddess our dusty old house desperately needs with all the ‘free time’ I was going to have being at home.

The pile of washing was huge and the pile of clothes waiting patiently to be put away even bigger. The dust on the units was a good couple of laters thick (only high-lighted by my toddlers hand prints in them much to his amusement!)

The TV was on in the day much more than it was off. The iPad was constantly being charged and the dummies are still hanging around.

Trips out to playgroups every day turned into trips to the retail park, far too many babychinos and far too many Poundland bribe toys.

I drank too much. Too much coffee and too much wine.

I promised myself me and my husband would have more ‘us’ time, more nights out, more kid free days, but the voucher we got for a night away it still sitting unused in the kitchen crap drawer after nearly a year, and 9pm has become my standard bedtime!

But, and here’s the thing we’re all guilty of if we’re honest. I am spending too much time thinking about everything I didn’t do, or could have done differently if I had my time again.

So, please if you’re reading this, join me and reflect on some of the things that happened this year that you’re proud of! Give yourself a high five and stick yourself right at the top of your own personal honour list!

I’ll start you off with mine…

•Life – I made another mini human! Hands down my proudest achievement of 2017. He’s ridiculously cute, has the chubbiest thighs, hates sleep, hates teething. I LOVE HIM, he is WONDERFUL.

•Recovery – my body has been through two pregnancies and two c sections! Sometimes I think after all this it’s a miracle I’m still scrambling around on hands and knees after my kids. Our bodies are amazing aren’t they?

•Potty Training – my first attempt at this parenting milestone. Many sweets and reward toys were consumed! Many anti bacterial wipes were used! But many of mummys pennies were also saved in nappies in the year!

•Getting Messy – I was always happy to let my toddler do all the messy fun at nursery, but I’ve had a blast trying this at home and watching both my children’s enjoyment. Even if there’s glitter permanently engraned in my rug and dried bits of play dough squished between the floorboards.

•Sharing – I finally got round to writing and stared up my blog in the early summer. It was beyond daunting at first, putting yourself out there but as much as I’ve enjoyed writing I’ve loved reading everyone’s responses to it, from old friends on Facebook and new friends on my Instagram page. You’ve all been absolutely lovely (and if you haven’t already voted for me in the UK Blog Award please do so!)

•Confidence – everyone says you grow into yourself in your thirties, but in the last couple of months in particular I have found my happy I think, with my body, with my style and my ‘look’. I’m 5 foot 10 and a size 14-16, I’m never going to be ‘thin’ I love food far too much and exercise is always a challenge! I’m happy now not worrying about size labels in clothes and just buying what looks right. My body has produced two wonderful babies and the podge and rolls and wrinkles is just a reminder of what I have achieved!

And here comes 2018.

I’m not going to set myself up for failing all my New Years resolutions by making some ridiculous unachievable ones, but here’s hoping I can…

•Relax, a bit more. About nap times, bedtimes, how much I’m doing or not doing, and everything else that keeps this stress head mama awake at night.

•Catch up on sleep. I’m hoping (begging, pleading) that littlest decides to sleep nicely soon!

•Make some more money! My shopping habits for me and the boys are a tad expensive (heehee) and I’m going to really try stop procrastinating and put some of my ideas into reality and do something for myself – watch this space!

•Put It Down – My phone that is, I really want to try. Stop looking at it. Enjoy my boys more in real life than from behind the camera.

•Drink less. Yeah, well everyone needs one silly one on their list…!

Happy New Year everyone may 2018 be as amazing as you are!

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