One of the best things about Christmas is the festive days out. Everywhere you go, there are twinkly nights, big Christmas trees and general sparkliness. The week before Christmas, we went to the ice rink at the Natural History Museum for some of those holiday sparkles. If you've ever been to London, then no doubt that you've visited the Natural History Museum. It is iconic. Besides the great exhibitions, it is just the most beautiful building. So you can imagine that an ice rink next to it feels incredibly London-y (for the purpose of this post, we are pretending that this is an actual word).
It doesn't feel like Christmas until I have been to The Rose Theatre in Kingston. Every year they put on an amazing Christmas show, and they never let me down. I wasn't sure if they were going to be able to top last year's A Christmas Carol, especially as this year they chose a play you wouldn't expect to be on for Christmas. This winter sees the much-beloved book, The Wind in the Willows, brought to life.
I won't keep you in suspense - The Wind in the Willows was utterly mesmerising. Mole is lonely and abandons his life of cleaning and doing mole things. He goes in search of adventure, and meets Ratty, who gives Mole a boat ride and their adventure begins. The staging was simple but effectively conveyed the areas of the river and Toad Hall. They even manage a ride-able motorcar for Toad, who is fond of wild joyrides.
While most of us have been thinking about our autumn/winter fashion, how many of us have extended these thoughts to our accessories? I'm talking about watches in particular. A couple of months ago, I got a new watch to update my autumn/winter style. And not just any watch, but a wood watch from Jord. I have received numerous compliments on my new watch, as you can imagine.
I had seen these Jord watches on Instagram for quite some time. I thought they looked pretty, but a wood watch did not seem very practical. Surely they would be heavy and uncomfortable, and then they would probably warp at the first sign of rain. When my Frankie watch arrived, I was happy to be proven wrong. I chose the Frankie because I loved the zebrawood and champagne combination. It is so elegant. Also, as zebrawood is a stripy wood, it looks quite unique. It is not just one colour, which makes it even more obvious that it is indeed a watch made out of wood.
Just because I am a mother, it doesn't mean that I've lost my sense of humour. So for Christmas, I would like some gifts that are fun as well as thoughtful. Yes, I wouldn't mind a new jumper or some cosy socks. But there are so many other things that would put a smile on my face. I am a mother, but I also have a naughty sense of humour and am into technology. So here are some much-wanted items, from one silly mum to another.
December in London can be a strange month. You can be getting ready for Christmas while the weather feels quite autumnal. And then in just a week's time, winter has arrived. I thought I would share some photos which were taken in the space of one week. The top being the first photo, and the last two from a week later. We start off with green, orange and red leaves on the tree, and the leaves that are on the ground are crunchy. Then there seems to be more leaves on the ground, and they're mostly brown. There is frost and ice, and everything still looks quite beautiful though different to how they once were.
The photos were all taken in Richmond Park, where I go once or twice a week for walks with friends. I always mean to remember to bring my SLR, but I forget. The photos were taken with my iPhone 6, which has such an amazing camera, and makes me look like a better photographer than I am.
Does anyone else get the urge to re-vamp their bedrooms in the winter? I always see people on Instagram who have Christmas bedding and twinkly lights to transform their bedrooms into winter wonderlands. So I thought I would put together a little wishlist of items that would make my bedroom feel warm and wintry without looking like a child's room.
Daily tantrums. Over. Nothing. The wrong colour cup. They don't want to wear shoes. That dog looked at them funny. From the time my son was two, until a couple of months after his fourth birthday, our life was filled with constant tantrums. Sometimes they were small, and could be eased with a cuddle. Sometimes they were epic meltdowns that only subsided after mummy was bitten and whacked into submission. And by submission, I mean I would be curled up in a corner sobbing my eyes out.
But then things got easier. And I don't mean that I became better adept at dealing with the tantrums. Or that I became tougher at dealing with the public shamings and smackings. I probably did get better at handling them, but then the tantrums just eased. Considerably. My son no longer needed to fight about every decision. Dubz no longer needed to shout and scream whenever he disagreed with me. We could leave a park without floods of tears. All of a sudden, he seemed to gain some sense.
You may remember that last year we gave our guest bedroom's ensuite bathroom a makeover. The guest room and its bathroom are on the second floor so I don't go up there very often and normally ignore it until we have a guest coming. Last year, when we gave the bathroom a mini-makeover, I felt quite pleased with what we achieved. But then, whenever we had guests, I started feeling bad about giving them our old, mismatched towels. So when Rooi contacted me about reviewing some of their luxury towels, I knew exactly where they would be of use.
These Brampton bath towels are so soft and luxurious. They are made of 600gsm of pure Egyptian cotton. And they wash really well. The rib design makes them look really fancy, so my guests will really feel at home. I am a huge fan of white towels. They just make bathrooms look brighter. And they also make you feel like you're in a hotel.
Last week, I had a night out at the Roof Garden at the John Lewis on Oxford Street in central London. I was invited to a Christmas party for bloggers, and I got to take one of my friends along too. If that wasn't enough of a treat, we were given the most amazing cocktails from Background Bars and delicious Scottish fare from Mac & Wild. We were then given ideas on how we could Make It Thoughtful this Christmas.
Christmas can be so stressful. Many children have lists of presents they want, which in a way makes life easier. But what do you get your other family and friends? People that you care about, but might not be too sure what they would like. John Lewis are encouraging shoppers to be more thoughtful when it comes to gift-giving. One way to do that is to add a bit of personalisation.
It's that time of the year, and if you have small children, then your thoughts are probably on Father Christmas. Maybe, like me, you have had a couple of bad experiences. Maybe FC was really young, or skinny, or else he looked like he was still drunk from the night before. Spare a thought for us when we had the Santa who was all three. *sob, sob* Anyway, it is such a relief when you find a good-quality Father Christmas. And it es even better when it turns into a fun family day out.
A couple of weekends ago, my family and I drove up to Willows Activity Farm for fun and Father Christmas. And we were not disappointed. First of all, there are loads of Christmassy activities. We started with the 3D Sleigh Ride film. which the kids loved. Then we went on to 'Create a Cuddle' where Moozles and Dubz each made a cuddly husky dog. Afterwards, they wrote letters to FC. Moozles is eight, so was able to write her own. Dubz needed help, but he was thrilled to be able to post the letter in the special red post box. We actually received replies from Father Christmas a week after our visit, which was a lovely touch.