The last couple of weeks have been a real struggle for me, and consequently I missed last weeks “MyHeartyLife” update! I have had a kidney infection, and whilst I have been trying to get on and mother etc, I kinda hit a wall and just needed to rest and switch off as much as possible if I wanted any chance of my body being able to recover.

I seem to be pretty run down generally in life, and seem to get ill quite often which I find incredibly frustrating, but thankfully in these last couple of days, and after some tests and 2 courses of antibiotics, I am finally feeling like me again!

This week has been pretty good (minus being so ill at the beginning of it), and we have had made some fabulous memories through Megan’s birthday and a Taylor Swift concert.

Grateful For … 

This week I feel super grateful for our second born child – Miss Megan! On Thursday she turned 6 and it was wonderful to be able to celebrate her and her presence in our family/lives! I am grateful to be the mother of someone that is so funny, crazy and generally filled with goodness. She can be cheeky and explosive if you upset her or frustrate her too much, but mostly she is kind and thoughtful and I am just grateful to be able to walk through life with her. She is a real daydreamer and imaginative and I love to see life through her eyes!

I also feel grateful for the offers of help from neighbours and friends whilst I haven’t been well, and for my little sister taking me to the hospital to make sure everything was okay! I am grateful for my lovely mother in law throwing Megs a birthday tea of homemade pizza’s and for one of her aunts making her a fresh cake out of melon and grapes!! And then finally again for my mother in law for buying me a fab drinks bottle so that I can drink more, and get better quicker.

It’s been clear to see that I am surrounded by good people and I felt especially grateful for that fact and realisation this week.

Succeeded At …

Being well enough to see Taylor Swift! We bought the tickets before Christmas and have been super excited ever since! At the beginning of this week I really thought that I wouldn’t make it. I was so weak and ill that we decided to ask around to see if anyone else wanted to go with Nathan. Thankfully though I did feel a little better and with knowing it was seated, I felt I could face it and we decided to go. I loved every second and it was so nice to escape life to spend time with Nathan at such an epic concert!

We certainly ended a hard week on a high, and even though I didn’t feel my best and was tired, it was a lot of fun.

Found Beauty In …

On Friday evening as I drove to Leeds to get Nathan from work for our concert date, I passed the most beautiful field of Poppies! Within seconds I had pulled over and got out to snap a pic. I love these moments when I am on my own and have such beautiful reminders in my life of our precious little Poppy! It made me very reflective for the next chunk of my drive, but I am grateful for that time to be on my own and just feel it.

I also found beauty in seeing Megan with her friends for her party on Saturday, and Alice laughing her head off today in the car. I love being their mother and being able to witness these hearty moments that fill my heart with love and joy!

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On Monday morning I headed to London on the train to participate in some filming with Channel 5 for a piece on Stillbirth. It was lovely to be able to meet such a bunch of brave, and kind women, and to hang out a little with 2 other blogging friends; Laura Dove from Five Little Doves, and Jess from The Legacy of Leo – it is always exciting to meet a person in real life (hi Jess), and to see a familiar face! It will be aired LIVE on Tuesday at 6.30pm and I am feeling sooo nervous about that part, and still can’t decide what to wear for the live show!

With that as the start to my week, you could say that this week has been rather a surreal one, and of course, very reflective. It is so good that Channel 5 are covering such an important topic, and one that is still so widely awkward for people, but sharing our story always stirs those raw emotions I work to keep a lid on day to day. However, I say time and time again that the ripples of stillbirth and baby loss are huge, and looking back I would have loved to have seen women like me sharing how life is months and years on. I did get that a lot from Leeds SANDS, but I know that that isn’t an option for everyone, and so have always said if I can write or do something that can help even one family/person to navigate through the fog of losing a baby, and try to normalise loss in everyday life, then I will jump right on it! Of course it is emotional, of course it is scary and vulnerable too, but we need to talk and break the silence to help others!

Grateful For …

This week I am grateful for my Mum and sister helping out with childcare and school runs so that I could easily go to London and back. I am grateful to be working on an important piece with Channel 5 and sharing Poppy’s story with others – It is a privilege!

I am also grateful for Deli No.1 Milkshakes (choco – mint!) and friends to share them with. And finally I am grateful for lovely friends in the village that invited Alice and I out on Thursday! It was such a laugh, and generally lovely day at The Deep in hull … chasing tots, watching fish and sharks, and seeing the penguins being fed! I never did get my piece of cake I was chatting about, so hopefully that will be next time, but all in all it was a great spontaneous day that left me feeling happy!

Succeeded At …

This weekend I have had 3 of my nephews to stay to enable my sister and her husband to be able to have a lovely time in Cambridge for his Masters graduation (well done guys!) and general celebrations of that. On Friday I also had one of my nieces as my other sister was working a night shift, so here is my ultimate success of the week – 7 kids, about 4 hrs sleep, and me still sane and my house not too trashed = high 5 and ultimate success!

Yesterday we also took a train into Hull with the original 6 and went round a couple of the museums. I loved it, and whilst this was far more manic than we anticipated (and 5 out of the 6 kids ended up soaked to the skin after running through the fountains), we are all in one piece and still had a good day all round. So I want to say I feel good to have succeeded with Nathan at looking after 6 kids from 21 months to 8 years old for the weekend!

Found Beauty In …

Seeing Alice on Thursday at The Deep, was one of the cutest and most beautiful things I have seen in a while! She was loving it, and was so vocal and excited to be there. She shouted at the stingrays and sharks, and couldn’t figure out that there was glass between her and them, so would jump each time they came near. She was mesmerized by the penguins, and both seeing the pretty aquarium and her reaction to it (as well as being with 2 lovely ladies) made for a very beautiful day indeed!

On Friday Ethan and Megan also participated in our Churches Talent show – Megs did an improv dance (it was epic) and then backed up Ethan whilst he sang! They both did us incredibly proud, and it was beautiful to see them shining on the stage.

I hope you have had a great weekend despite these April showers, and I hope this week is kind to you!

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Hello and welcome to my weekly celebration of life – #MyHeartyLife. This is the post I write each week where I look for the good, the successes and the beauty of the previous week. It is a time where I can appreciate the small moments of joy and success, and show you that however good or bad my week has been, I can seek out the Hearty in my Life! It’s the main reason I originally called my blog what it is and I hope it will help you also to reflect on the goodness you have had in your own life!

Blog Musings and Goodbye Linky!

If you are a blogger and have come to link up with me, then apologies to you – It is no more! I do want to thank you though for your support over these few months, but after much pondering and reflection on my blog and what I want from it, I have decided to rein it in and just continue to write these “MyHeartyLife” posts for myself/my readers as a weekly window into the good and blessed points of life as opposed to doing it because I run a linky. I will still be using the # on Instagram when I share relevant pics, and will check that regularly to connect with you. I will also most likely be posting this weekly little nugget over the weekend now instead of on a Friday, as I have decided that I want it placed as a nice round off to our week. Naturally this means it will replace my weekly “Ordinary Moments” posts, which I surprisingly feel okay about. You see, whilst I have enjoyed writing those over the years, I now feel I want to move on from them. I have missed several this year and it’s really down to the fact that I am simply not feeling it anymore, and consequently they don’t seem to be flowing from me how they once did. Because of that, I sometimes feel under pressure from myself to get one out just because it’s that time of the week again and what I have always done for the last 3 years. I don’t like that feeling because I don’t ever want my blog to be a chore. It is my passion, and so I feel that by this not being a linky anymore, and turning it into my only weekly roundup of moments, it is sufficient. It covers the ordinary and extraordinary moments of life, as well as the joy, the gratitude, the appreciation and reflections about my/our life, or generally things within our family that are lovely and we want to high 5!

I am happy that by making these changes it will then leave space for me to write about all of the other things I really want to be sharing on my blog too.

I want to let you know that this was a hard decision (really hard) because it feels in a way like I am giving up, or that I failed at a goal I was so keen to do. But instead I think I want to shift that thinking to see it more as me evolving and recognising the places I can change and improve, and then being confident to make those changes to my blog and the content I share. I feel good about mixing things up a little now in order to feel in control, less stressed about something I love and treasure, and taking the steps I want to, to make my blog more of me. Plus of course there is that major factor being that the interest just wasn’t there from other bloggers, which you very much need when running a linky (perhaps the linky scene is already saturated? or perhaps taking a nosedive?) and I guess that’s fine… I tried my best and I can tick it off and pat myself on the back for giving it a go!

What these last few months have accomplished though, and what I am most proud of is the fact that it has created for me a pattern of focusing on, and looking for goodness daily/weekly. It has taken me back to my roots of knowing that however my week has been I can seek out the hearty moments and I can feel grateful for the small things. I am reminded I can look for the little achievements along the way and I can then, as a result, be grateful for life and feel more content in my life and in my role as a stay at home mum. I love that I am seeing success in places where I felt like I was failing, and that how I measure success is changing so much too. I feel more positive than I did a few months ago, and better about myself even when my days are hard and trying. I feel like generally I am being more mindful day to day, and taking more time to notice moments and scenes of beauty (which was my intention all along), and even if these are very brief, it is what I want to share to remember the good and hopefully help others do the same in their own lives.

And so whilst it has been a lesson learned in the blogging world, and I have picked up some techy skills, it has mostly helped me personally to be grateful for my life and the people in it, as well as the things I am blessed to have around me. I look forward to easing the pressure of running and promoting a linky going forward, and changing what I post. I have so many things I want to be writing about at this stage of life; more about my own loves and passions, and then certainly continuing with our family life and our adventures, and so much more on loss too which I feel is so important!

I am excited again for my blog, and for the opportunity each weekend (as opposed to rushed on a Thursday night) to be grateful and appreciative of what I have done, seen and experienced in that previous week. And SO, without further ado, here is the evolved and yet very much the same version of #MyHeartyLife ( just minus the linky and soon to be on a weekend) – Thank you so much for reading my ramblings until here and Enjoy my blogs from here on out!

This week…

This week has been absolutely glorious hasn’t it?And how mint that here in April we are experiencing a good old “Heat wave”! As a result I have had my sandals on most of the week (love), my legs out in shorts yesterday, and shades on daily – It has been wonderful and made me feel like a winner (and rather cool)!

I find that when the sun is shining, not only does the world and people seem so much brighter and less stressed, but when it’s warm, I find that life, parenting and choosing what to wear, all feel so much simpler! I love that this week we have felt the sand on our toes, have had lots of long walks, and filled our bellies with ice creams (In April!). I love that it has meant that I have been able to sit in the garden, with my eyes closed and only hear the birds and feel at peace. Yes people, I have loved this week so much with all of its fabulous weather, and I only wish it was here to stay, because I am certainly in a state of Joy and excitement when I wake up and see blue skies and sunshine every morning!

Grateful for …

Incase you can’t tell I have been super grateful this week for the weather! I am grateful to have been on the beach, seen my friend’s and sisters, and for the natural change in my mood because of the Sun! I am thankful for the warmth of the Sun on my skin and for all of the things it has enabled us to enjoy; from tasty ice creams and beach walks, to late nights playing out, and care free days. I am thankful to not need a coat when I go out, and I am thankful for nature in full bloom!

I am also grateful for the effort we’ve all made in getting to school on time… its been really good (except for Yesterday), and on Monday Megan even received an award for her efforts!

Succeeded at …

This week I succeeded at taking Alice swimming. I have been saying for ages that I need to fit a weekly trip to the leisure centre into our routine, but have always made excuses, and we have never kept to it. I used to always take Ethan and Megan (we went every week), and now Alice is bigger, I have felt for a while it would do her good, and it would be a good day out for us every week to look forward to (possibly with a few cousins too).

After we went last Friday with some family, I was reminded just how much she loves water and splashing around, and so on Tuesday I finally did it… we got the train to the pool with slides and a splash zone, and spent almost an hour having fun in the water together.  It was lovely and felt so great!  She jumps in now, and laughs hysterically as she flies down the slides and bobs back up out of the water. She goes round and round on those little slides and generally just has a brilliant time. By the time we’re done it is lunch time, and after her little pack up, she naps in her pram whilst I find somewhere to sit and work (or possibly wander the charity shops).

I love it when hard things become enjoyable, it has felt a huge accomplishment, and I am loving this stage we are in.

Found beauty in …

I’ve been to the coast twice this week and that has been the source of many beautiful scenes! Being at the coast/on the beach is certainly my happy place, and it is always so much more beautiful in the sunshine too. As I sat with the sun on my skin I had to close my eyes, breath in the salty fresh air and appreciate that moment of beauty! It felt like I was on holiday, and the peace and calmness of that moment, overlooking the calm sea and bay was indeed so very beautiful and soul enriching.

I love looking out to sea and relaxing, wandering the promenade, and generally seeing the beautiful sights of life by the sea!

Oh, and I loved seeing little Alice scoffing her first chocolate ice cream – that was just gorgeous!

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Welcome back to another week of #MyHeartyLife – an opportunity to celebrate the small moments of gratitude, success and beauty from the previous week. I love recording and noticing the beauties and small hearty moments in life, because together these things make me see that life is good and blessed despite the really hard days.

I hope you will join me, either by linking a blog below, or sharing something on Instagram with the # “MyHeartyLife”. I love to see all of the little moments that are bringing people Joy!

THIS WEEK…

I have run out of foundation, and so have been looking a little worse for wear, but the house is reasonably tidy, we’ve had a couple of adventures on the train seeing friends, and a village walk yesterday, and so I suppose you could say it’s been a good week!

Mostly this week has seen Alice and I have taking it easy and getting organised whilst the kids try and get back into a new term at school. I have enjoyed catching up on a couple of favourite programmes whilst she naps, and catching up with friends and neighbours around that. If I could sum up this week in a couple of words, I would certainly choose “Chocolate” and “tired” – We are all super tired from travelling and have only just about got back into some kind of normal sleep pattern, as well as our regular routine of school runs and clubs!  The kids have been late for school most days (whoops), as it has proven to be nigh impossible to wake them and we are just generally a bit slower than normal in our everyday life. Consequently, with the madness of trying to get back to normal and lazing around feeling meh, I have been gorging on reduced Easter chocolate (to make up for what I missed) and overall doing very little outside of cooking, cleaning and clubs!

Grateful for…

This week I am very grateful for veggies, lentils, beans and homemade food – they are a welcome treat following the amount of fast food we had, and it has been lovely cooking for the family again! Whilst I loved the treats we enjoyed on holiday, there is such a thing as having “too much of a good thing”, and diet wise I have been happy to come home to familiar and more wholesome foods!

With that I have to say that I am also very grateful that I only gained 1lb on holiday from the excessive aforementioned diet, and whilst this was a victorious feeling on Monday, here on Friday I am questioning if perhaps I have sabotaged that after all of the chocolate I have scoffed since being back (I just can’t help myself). I was, at the beginning of the week, very grateful to find reduced Easter eggs still in Tesco, yet now I am wondering what the heck I was thinking because I seem to have adopted scoffing Easter chocolate into my nightly routine -The struggle is real. Despite this I am truly grateful for the Sunshine we had on Monday, Lunch with a friend Wednesday, and my mother in law for helping us with a lift to swimming yesterday. Each point has made the week a little more joyful!

Succeeded At…

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago about my “secret course” I have been doing, and whilst I still don’t feel like sharing all on that front yet (soon my friends I promise), I would like to say I was delighted to find out on Wednesday night that my first unit was passed! I also successfully went back with renewed energy (and a powerpoint presentation I had created), after feeling like I wanted to quit before Easter. This was the ultimate success because I had been rather anxious about it all before, but then whilst away, and some encouragement from Nathan, I decided it was only a few more weeks and that in the long run it would be most beneficial.

Ultimately it comes down to the fact that it is incredibly hard to study with young kids (like seriously hard), but now I am feeling great about it again, I am more motivated and look forward to handing in my next 3 units over this fortnight. I only have a few more weeks left, so hopefully that will be a mega success right there to look forward to if I can keep on keeping on. For now though I feel each week I go, and each piece of work I complete is a little success in itself with how much I am balancing around it all.

I also successfully got on top of holiday laundry, successfully got the kids to school every day (despite their exhaustion), and successfully made a tasty lasagne and Lentil-bean chilli this week!

Found Beauty In…

Daffodils are everywhere at the moment around here and my oh my are they beautiful! They line the roads, and all over green patches in the village their little yellow heads bop around as if to greet us! They are a sure sign of Spring (though the weather would have us believe otherwise), and I feel like they really brighten up the place! I have loved looking at them on the school runs, and also whilst I have been out and about with Alice…I think they make everything that little bit more bright and beautiful.

Now if we could just have some milder and more sunny weather …

#MyHeartyLife Rules

You can link up one post a week that fits into either or all of the “Prompts”, and I ask that you at least comment on mine and one or 2 others too. Kindness costs nothing and a comment on your blog feels amaze!

Please use the #MyHeartyLife on Social media whenever you want to share the goodness and cheerful moments in your life that day! It might also help when summing up the week into a blog post to link up!

 

The Hearty Life


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