I decided to post my January update during this final week as me and the hubs are going to Prague (yahoooo) and for a healthy mind and enjoyable trip I don’t want to restrict myself from holiday treats and local delicacies, so I plan on eating not as great or strictly as I have been doing but also hope that with all of our walking and exploring it shouldn’t cause too many problems , of course I will still be healthy in my choices but I won’t be saying no to things I fancy!

So how have I been doing since I gained a few L.Bs over Christmas? Well I quit sugar and started Marathon training (half that is).
On the 5th of January myself and the hubs decided to quit sugar. I love sugary treats and have made no secret of that fact; doughnuts, chocolate, ice cream, cookies, I seriously love it all! But I knew deep down to rid the bulge and to fit into my spring / summer wardrobe it was necessary to get rid. And so we have been stricter with the clean eating and cut out refined sugar. Combined with this  my sister in law also suggested a 1/2 marathon for those in the family that were up for the challenge and so I decided why not… I am not the best runner but completed a 10k with little training, so if I can work my butt off I should (a) be able to complete it and (b) in an okay time and maybe, just maybe I might be able to raise a few quid for the hospice and/or Leeds Sands.
I have spent the last few weeks trying not to die as I get my body used to running reasonable distances, I have a 14week training plan and am currently running twice a week. I swapped my fitness and swim membership to gym and swim so whatever the weather I can run run run! I wish I was running more frequently and longer distances but my busy mum life and Asthma issues are making it nigh impossible!

The 1st week was the hardest with both, but the occasional apple slices with natural peanut butter have diminished my sugar cravings and now i’m pretty strong with that, I have only caved once – for a KitKat Chunky Peanut butter after our SANDS meeting (but I felt that that was justified) and the morning following my 1st 20min run I was in pain! My body is certainly getting used to it all and now I hope that come February my cardio vascular system can deal with a further distance and I can start clocking a couple more miles.

Here is my weight tracker since then – Just shy of a 7lb loss.. I cannot explain how mint this feels, how toned I am getting and how great I feel. At last I have broken through the 160 barrier and now in the 150 region – I CANNOT WAIT to see the difference another month will bring! AHHHHHHHH at this rate I will definitely reach my goal weight in my goal time – 140 by the end of March-  oooooooo fingers crossed!


And how I am looking from the pic that made me cringe to now :

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I still have work to do on my arms and that sneaky “tire” region but I am feeling good and pleased with how I am looking these days (less wobbly)!

P.S Mr Smith has also lost 7lbs YAY

Did you have any weight loss or fitness goals this year? what are they and how are you getting on?


We lead quite an active and adventurous life (around Yorkshire) and even with the loss of Poppy we have spent very little time indoors – some days that is hard for me, but getting out and about to museums, parks, beaches, forests, town…wherever we fancy has helped me personally to not be in a state of despair, helped me as a mother to create memories and learning experiences for my children and helped us as a family have a lot of fun and smiles. Both Ethan and Megan are very active kids and easily bored if we have to stay in and then end up reaping havoc! I usually have a rough idea of what we are doing each week and like to plan ahead to an extent, it makes it easier to be one step ahead with the kids and not get stressed or overwhelmed (though I do at times).  It ensures we get out somewhere each day and let them run and be free and climb and explore!
Every night and every morning they both ask, without fail: “where are we going tomorrow? what are we doing today?” ! Life is quite busy and at times fast paced, I love being a stay at home mum but as other mummy’s know it also doesn’t end at 5pm and most weeks I am worn out and drained from carrying grief and carrying on trying to maintain a hearty life!

I am grateful then for the days (usually once a week) when all the activeness catches up with them and til early afternoon they are mellow and want to laze around! On these days we snuggle in bed whilst having chats and laughing, stay in our PJ’s till late morning and play and generally chill out together. On these very ordinary “rest” days we ALWAYS build a train track – We have a mint one that Grandma S bought Ethan for his birthday and every time I try to out do the one I made last time (the kids have learnt not to interfere)… More circles, more bridges and more options of where the trains can go…we all love it and then after a bit I can sneak off and leave them to it and catch up on laundry and a few jobs around the house before we get dressed and get out again in the afternoon. I love the excitement and glee from the train set every time we play with it, I love that Ethan and Megs act like little rebels because at 10am they’re still not dressed. I love to just have the occasional day where we can chill out together, in our home; an ordinary day of doing whatever we please (but that usually involves trains) in our PJ’s, enjoying stretching the imagination, playing and spending cosy times together.



WP_20150121_09_45_23_ProI also love it when the not so ordinary moments crop up on days like these – afternoon naps and movies! At ordinary moments like these time stands still briefly and you realise how great life is!








A couple of days ago I met an old friend (not in years) for lunch and shopping. It was a great day of bargains, kids running riot in department stores, rubbish food and well overdue chats. When I met up with her I asked her “whose baby is that?” to my horror it was of course hers – I’d forgotten that 10 months ago id visited her with a gift to meet the new addition, that we had been to her blessing and that we had hung out since. To be my friend anyway it comes with the occasional blonde moment or spacing out mid convo but this was none of them, it appeared to me that my grief had made me forget an important part of an important friends life because it was baby related – thankfully we laughed it off and my absent mindedness was excused! I fed her over lunch (the baby) and grinned and chatted at her, all whilst we talked about Poppy, yet it didn’t hurt and it wasn’t uncomfortable because this baby, like a few others in my life, I already knew (though i’d forgotten) and had a little bond with. I share it because I want you to know that even though I’ve lost my baby I still find joy in SOME babies and I also have friends that are comfortable to talk about my loss in a very natural way.

Loosing a baby is something that you can’t understand unless you have experienced it. I’ve never expected anyone to understand it or even know the right thing to say to us. If you are a parent then you can probably imagine how it might be, how you might respond if heaven forbid you were unfortunate enough to have to bury one of your children, but having received a “not compatible with life diagnosis” at 30 weeks pregnant, I can tell you I DID imagine it all and nothing prepared me for the reality of loosing my baby, for this reason I know if it the roles were reversed I too would be stuck for words or what to do.

It is why when I meet other mothers that have lost children we have an instant bond, our hearts speak the same language, our minds have asked the same questions, our bodies felt emotions that you would think would kill you they hurt so much. We have all found ourselves apologising to others for our grief, comforting others because of our loss and we all try to act normal but feel far from it. A lot of these parents and mothers sit with me each month at our SANDS meetings but occasionally I will find one at a play and stay or social event and as sad as it is that we share in this loss it lifts your heart to know someone else gets it, and for an hour or 2 I can relax, drop my barrier, stop pretending and talk bluntly and openly at how rubbish life is sometimes, how hard this path is, how different you feel from who you were.

Once a month at a support group, or the occasional run in with someone isn’t frequent enough to not feel lonely or abnormal, 2 or 3 days out of 30 in a month I get to be understood, not judged or questioned on where im at or how loosing my baby is causing me to react. I get frustrated in between that, frustrated with myself sometimes that I don’t see things how I used to, frustrated that people seem to not be bothered any more, frustrated that they just don’t get how hard it is..STILL (yes 4months on and its sill hard) and frustrated that people don’t respond how we would hope.

As I sit in these valuable 2hr a month meetings though I can finally relax, speak and be understood, be assured I’m moving forward in a healthy way yet still with a great distance to go and I can share Poppy with people that won’t cringe, judge or make me feel I need to apologise because I did. I realise most of all though that however I feel, act or respond is normal for me, because I’ve never been through this before, I don’t know day to day (sometimes hr to hr) how it will be or what effect it will have on my life in that moment, just as those that haven’t experienced it don’t know what the reality of loosing a baby is like. This is my journey, meant for me and so its okay to be frustrated, sad, heartbroken, upset, anxious, empty, angry, tired, irritated, impatient, or even happy and laughing out loud and I don’t need to apologise for it. I didn’t fail a test, I didn’t loose my favourite pair of shoes or leave my purse at the shops – I lost my baby, I gave birth to perfect little girl on my due date that didn’t move, cry or open her eyes and I can’t just get on with my life as if that didn’t happen, I can’t pretend I didn’t see my husband lower a tiny casket into the ground and I can’t pretend it doesn’t hurt like crazy.

I dance with my kids in our onesies, laugh out loud with my friends, joke with my family and husband and enjoy my life in whatever ways I can, but the barrier of loss is always present in my life. Because I have a few days of fun and laughs doesn’t mean I have moved on from this nor does it always mean i’m doing okay. The pain of loss that you will never know is under the surface and anything can grate at it and cause it to appear. I want to feel normal, I want to figure our what life means to me now and the role I play and so yes I will plan social activities only to find it too much, I go places as a mummy and feel at a loose end, some days I smile but really all I want to do is cry…I’m not an angry, jealous or negative person, I don’t hate people because they have their living babies, I feel joy (mostly) with my 2 kids that ARE here but they don’t replace what I have lost. I don’t hate my life nor anyone in it, rather I am a grieving mother that is reminded of her loss and the pain of it when I see these things. I have emotions iv’e never felt that I can’t control but that I just have to ride out, I’m not suffering with an illness or disease; I loved a little girl, I loved the idea of a new baby and whilst I believe I will heal from this in the future and have the hope I WILL be with her again one day, this separation brings the most rubbish of days that not many in life will ever know.


Image courtesy of Pinterest




A few months ago I got a great deal through “The book people” (at least I think it was them) on the Julia Donaldson collection on CD with songs (£10 for 10 cds – Whoooop). As soon as I saw them I knew that E and Megs would be loving their lives as they already had most of her works and they were for sure family favourites. I also hoped it would make car journeys (especially long distance) far more enjoyable for us all as they would be quiet listening and we would no longer have to endure Frozen on repeat (win win)!
So now every journey longer than 10 mins we pop one and listen along, it has become a very ordinary part of most of our journeys, but I never imagined really how much they both would love them. Their favourite is “What the ladybird heard”, this is one of the few Books that we didn’t already have and so a new story for them too, the way it is told is brilliant and the animal noises never fail to entertain, we listen to the ladybird whispers about 6 times before we can continue with the story and every time I repeat it they laugh just as hard as the first time they heard it. As I was in the process of skipping back to that part this week with them in fits of laughter I was reminded that it has really made us all smile on our travels to have these and that it is a lovely moment in our day.

I absolutely love their faces and their bond over a talking book and the joy this ordinary part of life brings to us all. I love to hear them laugh out loud and you can’t help but laugh too. It makes me really happy that something so simple creates these memories for us and its easy when your in a rush to get places or thinking of a million things to do that day that right under your nose these ordinary, yet joyful moments can easily pass you by if you don’t capture them…


I am now on the look out for more talking books for them to continue the fun…Do you have any entertaining kids CD’s in the car?