Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Listography - Oh I have missed you!!

The wonderful Kate over at Kate takes 5 has started her Listography going again! So so exciting!
This week she is being helped by older single mum and the theme is guilty pleasures! (take two!)

I wasn't blogging the first time this theme was shared, but even if you were, it's still a chance to have a look back and see if any have changed!
Don't forget to check out some of the other lists and maybe add your own!

So here we go, my top 5 guilty pleasures: (all images from google search)

1) Johnny Depp! Mmmmm...

I just think he's not only gorgeous, but such a great actor too! My favourite character he plays is Jack Sparrow, he just makes me laugh and for some weird reason I think he's yummy!! This guilty pleasure has caused slight embarrassment, as I follow a fan page on facebook and have had to cut down on the amount of yummy pictures I kept sharing, as I annoyed a few friends - woops! To be fair they were men, so perhaps they just don't understand, heehee! (even more secret, is sometimes I still post loads, but just to show on my own page, heehee!)

2) Nutella, eaten from the jar with a spoon!

3) Freshly baked treats! I'm really sneaky and have to try a cookie / cake/ whatever I've baked before anyone else! I justify it as quality testing ;-)

4) Spicy coated nut cracker thingies.
If you have a Co-op, that's where I found them. They're similar to Japanese rice cracker nuts, but way way better! I can eat a whole packet (or 2!) all to myself! They aren't huge packets, but I still hate sharing!

5) Ice cream! This is saved for when I'm feeling really rubbish! It depends on my mood as to which flavour I have; the top favourites at the moment are Ben and Jerry's Phish Food, Caramel Chew Chew or Karamel Sutra. 
These are usually devoured in one evening!! (V bad!) Only very occasionally can I restrain myself and save some for another day ;-)

So there you go, my guilty pleasures!
Off to have a look at some other lists :-)

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Becoming a better mum

Where I have been so poorly lately, I have had time to take stock of the many, many, many things that I am not satisfied with in my life. (I am very good at this!)
I have started to look at key areas that I want to work at improving; my negative attitude, being a better mum, being a better wife, pulling my weight with household chores.
I am a great believer in learning from others. So I have signed up for a few different things to help me get started.

This post is about the start of my journey to becoming a better mum.

I have been doing lots of research and pinning tips on my 'kids: parenting tips' board on Pinterest (did I tell you I love Pinterest? Well, just in case I didn't, I love love LOVE Pinterest!)
I have been talking to friends and family, chatting about issues on Facebook etc. This has been really helpful and has also reassured me that I'm not alone! We are all facing similar things with our children and can support each other through each little difficulty!
From these great 'pools of knowledge' I have been trying a few things already:

Using 'listening ears'.
This works a lot better than asking Little Man things over and over and getting more and more annoyed when he doesn't respond! This tip came from Little Man's auntie and I am sooo grateful!
Now, when I want Little Man's attention, I ask him if he's got his Listening ears on (and sometimes we wait for him to turn them on :-) ) before I try and explain what I want him to do.
Yes, sometimes I still have to repeat myself, but I get a lot less stressed ;-)

A little attention is better than none!
A family friend pointed this out to me and it is so simple and works great!
As you know I struggle with ongoing depression and this can cause extreme fatigue and lack of motivation to do anything!
My friend pointed out that even though I can't do lots of thing with the kids, I can still do little things, even when I 'm curled on the sofa in my jammies! So simple, I couldn't believe I hadn't tried it before!
So now, Little Man and I have had great fun running cars all over my legs and the sofa; playing with his action figures, making music with whatever toys we can find at the time to bop, snuggling up watching movies or sharing books, all from the comfort of the sofa!
With Little Miss I can do lots of singing and rhymes with her sat on my lap. She adores rocking back and forth, so 'Row, row, row your boat' and 'See-saw' are firm favourites! I can also sit and hold her hands whilst she stands between my legs, usually rocking back and forth some more! It's even better when Little Man or mum join in the singing too ;-)
If I'm feeling a little better, or able to push myself, I play with the kids on the floor. We spend time doing puzzles or drawing, my favourites are playing with balloons, or our crazy dance sessions, - Little Man has some great moves ;-)
I'm also trying hard to play with Little Man in his play kitchen up in his bedroom when he asks. Today we made a 3 course meal for Tam the Tiger and Big white Bear! This included soup, followed by roasted toys and finally strawberries and custard!
So before when I would just say, 'I'm too tired / too ill to play' or 'Go and play with Grandad / Grannie / Daddy' I'm trying more and more to push myself and play little games myself! The best bit is I'm having fun too which helps improve my low mood :-)

The other thing I decided to do was to sign up for a parenting course over at Netmums
Parenting course logo
find details here

I'm now receiving e-mails with more great advice and tips to help me get better and better!
My 'homework' is to:
Try and praise everyone in my family; for the things they do and for just being themselves!
Create and complete a Kindness Chart. For this, we have to work together and look for all the kind and helpful things we are doing, and nominate each other to colour a section of the chart. When the chart is complete, we get a family treat! The thing that I really love about this idea is that it's about working together. There are no names on the chart, so it won't create competition or smug / defeated feelings.
My next e-mail on this course is discipline - the area I find the hardest to get right!

Next time I'll try and share the other web page I've joined up to, and how it's teaching me to Fly!

Monday, 11 November 2013

T is for Time to Change

Those of you who have followed my little blog for a while now will know about my depression and how it affects my life.
Things once again, have not being going very well.
It seems like I take one step forwards and five back. Every time I start to feel better, or more in control something happens and I'm back where I started.
Sometimes it feels like I'm trying to climb up a spiral slide that is covered in grease; sometimes there is a rope to help me with my struggle upward, sometimes the rope is just out of reach and other times it disappears completely. Or that I have this invisible switch in my head that detonates when I'm starting to do better, so that I'm plunged back into the darkness and self-loathing of before.
I really want to get better. To stop relying on mum and hubby to do the majority of things around the house and for the kids. Then this veil of guilt I am suffocating under might finally start to lift.
I just don't know how I am going to make the changes needed to achieve my goal.
I'm so up and down t the moment, it's like being on a horrible roller coaster - I want to get off now!
I'm going to try and write more on my blog, as it really does help to clear my head.
I've also found a new site (thanks to a wonderful friend over at I'm a sparkly unicorn!) called Time to Change.
Time to Change is all about encouraging people to talk about and challenge mental health stigma and discrimination. So I have taken the pledge.
I have no problem in sharing the ups and downs of my journey with depression. I just hope that more people will do the same. The more we talk and share the better! The hopefully people will start to understand more and change their out-dated beliefs and prejudices.
If you're a fellow sufferer, or know someone who suffers from mental illness, here's a big hug from me!

image from here