With us being away in Tuscany at the end of October/beginning of November, I missed doing our October family update. I really love reflecting back on the month and seeing what has happened in our little family and seeing what we have done. I enjoy capturing the family and seeing us change and grow throughout the year!

Because so many lovely things happen for us both in October and November, I felt the need to write about both months for our family update here in this one, as November 2018 draws to a close! All of the pictures are from our recent holiday and I love looking back on the adventures!

October 2018 

October 2018 not only saw us take a great family adventure with grandma to Tuscany for half term, but it was also a month that will long be remembered as being the one that saw Mr Smith finally get a job closer to home! It was certainly one of the best pieces of news for our family this year, and felt so exciting. Since moving to our lovely village in East Yorkshire last year, it has been hard for us all having him still working in Leeds, but in 2 weeks we all all finally be over here together and begin to experience our lives in the way we hoped and imagined when moving. We will have him home for longer on a morning and earlier on some evenings, and especially in the Summer it will be great to have evening country walks or dinner at the beach. We are so excited that October gave us this and excited to be starting the new year with us all over here and living our new lives together.

Ethan also made the choice to be Baptised in October. He turned 8 (which feels so big) and decided he wanted to be baptised! His birthday weekend was another lovely one that month and seeing him take what was such a huge milestone in his life, was really lovely. It was a special occasion to share with all of our family and friends and one I am thankful for. I only wish we had taken a family pic that day!!

October also marked 9 years of marriage for Mr Smith and I (which we still need to celebrate properly ha!) and Baby loss awareness week. We had some great weekends with a trip to the fair, a family walk to Wharram Percy (a forgotten medieval village) and also some time to get cracking with the decorating. I had some great theatre review opps that I experienced with friends and we of course saw many wonderful places in Italy. We didn’t do our usual halloween things to wrap it all up, but being in Italy, it didn’t seem to matter at all as we were having our own beautiful (and very wet) adventures!

For sure October 2018 was filled with many things to celebrate and many wonderful adventures that I hope we will long remember.

November 2018

And now to November – This last month seems to have just flown by (which I seem to say so often) but I cannot believe that we only have 31 more days of 2018 left – it’s mad! It was a scary end to the month, which saw me and Alice and the hospital last night after a bad fall. Thankfully it wasn’t anything too bad… just some grazing and bad bruising, but boy was it a worrying ans stressful end to the month!

Aside from toddler accidents, this month has seen a lot of prep for Christmas, my birthday and more family moments! It began with us being away in Italy (we got back on the 3rd on November) and during those last few days we went to Florence and Pisa. They were great adventures and days out, and very warm too (which felt so funny to be all “summery” when we knew it was already November)! It was great to start the month off with so much fun and adventure together.

When we landed we headed straight up to Stamford to stay with Nath’s Sister. She recently had a baby and that first weekend of November was his blessing day. We had a lovely weekend with family and a lovely walk around Rutland waters before we all headed back North to our homes! It was of course Bonfire night the following day, but after travelling and a busy weekend, we didn’t (for the first year ever) do anything for it!

The following week I turned 34 and had a lovely birthday with friends and family. I spent the day with my sister in laws and mother in law, had a date night with Mr Smith, a take out with my sisters and a hot tub party with my pals! Turning 34 felt great, as I feel I am in a pretty good place in life and am really loving and knowing myself now. I like my roles and I am confident in my path! I received some lovely gifts too and I am just so thankful for that fun couple of weeks and getting a little bit older (and hopefully wiser too!).

Our weekends have been mostly chilled, but it has been great to chill together and get the house nearer to looking how we would like it!

Megan has moved up another reading level and Ethan has started to take trumpet lessons (heaven help my ears!). It is great to see them both enjoying going to school and doing their little extra curricular things. I love to see their interests evolve and see them enjoying things and spending time together too.

Today we will decorate for Christmas, and get cracking on doing good as a family leading up to it. We have many more Christmas movies to watch (we already made a start in November!) and family things to look forward to. I feel like this December is going to be a good one for us, as we are all in a better place and I certainly feel more excited than I have in a while! We are looking forward to Christmas meals, Christmas plays, carol singing and doing good to bring Joy to others. We hope your December is filled with treats and lovely moments to treasure too, so I guess all that is left to say now is – Let the festivities commence!!!

In October & November we are Grateful for:

*A family Holiday to Tuscany with To Tuscany
*Seeing many more new and Beautiful places in Italy
*Safety when we have travelled
*Mr Smiths New Job that means he can be closer to home
*Help to get our home looking lovely
*Megan’s reading improving so much
*Ethan being in our family and celebrating him
*Seeing Ethan be Baptised
*Mummy’s Birthday
*Date night to the Cinema
*Time with Family
*Country Living and Lovely friends around us
*Alice being okay after a bad fall

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This last week has quite possibly been up there with one of the best 2018 has given to us. Before we get any further into this current week, I wish to reflect and record all of the wonderful and joyful hearty moments that we have been blessed with from this last week, and the things that have made it so great for us.

For those of you who haven’t seen on my social media, our family have spent our half term break in the Chianti hills of Tuscany. It was absolutely stunning and, whilst we encountered some freak weather conditions whilst there (just our luck!!), we saw many beautiful and lovely Cities, towns and scenes of nature. It was great to be together and chill out away from everyday life, and I just loved our little Italian adventure. We rarely go away at this time of year, but I am glad that we did as it was a lovely adventure. I look forward to sharing it in more detail with you very soon.

Grateful For 

This week I am so unbelievably grateful that Nath has finally got a new job (Hooray!) – it has literally made our lives!! We heard the news on Tuesday whilst away and we all went a bit nuts with excitement (and relief) over it. I loved that Ethan captured me diving on Nath in sheer joy at this great news – it was pretty funny!

Yes, this really is great news for us all, and it means that we will all get to see more of Nath every day. He will have more prospects in his new role and we will also be a little more financially stable. I am excited that very soon he will no longer be having to commute to Leeds every day and this is something we have been hoping and waiting for for what feels like a lifetime now…I really am so relieved he finally bagged a new job working much closer to home in a job that will hopefully open new doors to his career.

When we decided to move last year to East Yorkshire it was a big thing that he still worked in Leeds, but everything just fell into place and we knew it was the right thing at this time for our family. We assumed that his job would soon follow suit, but instead that has been a challenge and has taken well over a year for that part of the puzzle to fit in. It has been really hard hearing so many “no’s” or “almost yes’s” from jobs interview after job interview time and time again, not to mention then having him so late and gone so early to get to and from Leeds. It has been hard on everyone and our lifestyle hasn’t been what we hoped for during the week. So, as you can imagine we are just all so grateful that this new job is on the horizon and we can all fully transition into this new chapter of life in the Village and live life more how we hope to!! Man it is such mint news!

I am also grateful for safety whilst we travelled, good weather in between the crazy storms, time with family over the weekend and generally just time together as a family. It really has been a lovely week.

Succeeded At

Getting back into school runs this week was a little bit of a shock to the system, however the kids have had no trouble getting up early (6am!) and despite needing a lot of reminders to stay on task to be on time (no change there), we aren’t doing too bad… so I would call that a success!

Then of course Nath successfully got a new job and so we are loving that little nugget of joyfulness!

Found Beauty In

There are so many beautiful things and scenes I have been blessed to see this week that have just simply made my soul sing. From the views across the vineyards of Chianti, to quaint little italian streets – my heart has been completely full and content, and I feel incredibly grateful. I have loved exploring Tuscany and its beautiful towns and cities, and I have loved seeing the kids amazed and excited at new adventures. Being together as a family is a beautiful thing in and of itself, and I am pleased we had a whole week together (even if they were a little whiny some days!).

On Sunday we had the pleasure of getting together with Nath’s Family in Stamford to celebrate the blessing day of one of our new nephews. It was a lovely occasions and great to see (and catch up with) the family. It was a beautiful day followed by a beautiful walk around Rutland Waters, where we saw the sun setting and cousins playing – it was so relaxing and Idyllic and I loved spending time with everyone.

Whilst there we took a few family snaps, and I especially love this brilliant selfie I took with my sister-in-laws. Nathan has 6 sisters and I have been fortunate to be friends with them long before Nathan and I even dated. Now, together we are 7 sisters and I love how well we all get along and how much love and laughter there is. This pic makes me so happy and I feel it oozes so much beauty, love and happiness!!!

How thankful I am this week for holidays, family, new jobs, new adventures and a lovely home to come back to! It has been a fab week that has made my heart full.

This week I will be turning 34 and I look forward to hopefully another week of love and laughter with friends and family!

 

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It has been such a crazy week here, with the weekend especially being rather full on and busy. It has all been very much focused on finishing the painting and getting our lounge decorated (which started last weekend), and then getting ready for Ethan turning 8 and being Baptised yesterday. We went to Hull fair Saturday evening with the kids, which was a lot of fun, and then yesterday was a lovely day too surrounded by friends and family celebrating Ethan! I am pretty tired from it all, but I am also starting this new, and rather wet week, with gratitude in my heart and mama pride for our lovely boy!

Grateful For 

This week I am so grateful for my mother in law and sister in law. Both of them have been over on a couple of occasions to help us get our lounge decorated and garden looking nice. Nath’s mum also babysat so I could go to college on Thursday, and I am always thankful to know the kids are in good hands and that she has been so good to us this week, despite all she has to do herself.

I am also grateful to be getting my lounge looking fresh and more in my own style, and grateful to be Ethan’s mother. Ethan can be hard work some days, as I am sure most kids can be. But this weekend has been brilliant and I am thankful firstly that he made me a mother, and secondly that we have been able to share some lovely moments with him and celebrate who he is in our family.

Succeeded At 

I succeeded at getting the lounge decorated (now to add some accessories and make it cool!). And we succeeded at having a lovely Baptism for Ethan. It was so nice to see so many people there, and it was touching to see how excited he was.

Found Beauty In

This week it has been beautiful to see Ethan and Megan getting on so well. They spent most of Hull Fair linking arms and whispering and giggling, and Ethan told me that when they went on the little caterpillar rollercoaster, Megan was a little scared so he let her snuggle up to him. The bonds of siblings is such a beautiful thing and I am thankful to have seen it more so this weekend between my 2 biggest kiddies!

I couldn’t publish this post without saying that I also found such beauty in seeing Ethan make promises with God and choosing to be baptised. As members of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints, having our kids be baptised is a really big and important milestone in our lives and I am pleased that Ethan wanted this too. It is so special and I never realised how beautiful and good it would feel to see my own little boy take those steps – I feel truly blessed for such a lovely weekend.

This coming week Nathan and I will be celebrating 9 years of marriage, and we are on the countdown now to half term and our trip to Italy! Grateful for all of these Hearty moments and for the good kind of tired!

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As we reach the end of September 2018, we cannot help but feel gratitude – gratitude for a gentle month that in the past has been so hard. And gratitude for the safe arrival of 2 new nephews/cousins for our children – we are looking forward to meeting them and watching them grow! We are thankful this month that the kids have seamlessly slotted back into school life, and that life overall has been good and positive this month!

September for us has always felt like “dooms day”! As it approaches, our emotions and anxieties are heightened as we prepare ourselves for the anniversary of losing our daughter, and another birthday without her here.

Whilst still reflective (and in some ways still hard) we did not feel that heaviness to the same degree this year and consequently it has meant that this September has been a month that we have enjoyed and found love in. We made the most of celebrating Poppy’s 4th birthday through a floral arrangement for her grave, a balloon release at the lighthouse, and cake and ice cream. Our pictures this month were taken that day – the 16th of September and our 3rd childs heavenly birthday! I like that each September now, however hard or solemn, however reflective or even peaceful we feel, we still get to celebrate her, and we still get to have pictures that symbolise us as a family of 6!

Aside from the build up to Poppy’s anniversaries, and time to remember her more so, September saw Ethan and Megan head back to school for years 2 and 3. They have been on time every single day (which is massive) and are enjoying being on Pack ups this year (for a change). They are both doing well so far and seem to be enjoying it and doing well – we couldn’t be happier with that.

September also saw me head back to college to embark on my Level 4 Counselling course – I have only been back 2 weeks, but so far it feels right and I am excited to get stuck into it and make new friends along the way! I am excited to be another step closer to this ambition of mine and the growth and knowledge that awaits in these next 2 years. Once I am qualified, it will be a huge blessing to our family, and a great adventure for me!

In and amongst anniversaries and back to school, September has also seen a few family adventures around Yorkshire. Our family have enjoyed a trip to the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway (as well as a swimming and disco party for our brother in laws 40th that day!), a coach trip over to Preston to our Temple for the day, and a lovely country walk in the wolds yesterday! When I think about September 2018, I am content in the fact that we have each embraced opportunities and adventures that have come our way. Whilst on occasion we have certainly missed the freedoms and fun of the Summer holidays, we have certainly made the most of this month and for that I am thankful.

As October approaches, we are more than excited (and very much looking forward to), celebrating Ethan turning 8, our 9th Wedding anniversary, and then for half term – heading to Tuscany for a week! It’s going to be an epic month and we cannot wait for all of the memories and fun that await!

In September we are Grateful for:

*A peaceful Month
*An opportunity to Celebrate Poppy and send her balloons!
*Family that came to celebrate Poppy – and for the ones who sent their thoughts!
*For new friends and for them making us feel loved on Poppy’s anniversaries and enjoying lunch out together!
*For a trip to the theatre with Mr Smith (Date night out – hallelujah)
*Mummy and Megs seeing Madagascar the musical
*Country walks
*Bonus sunshine days
*Seamlessly adjusting back to school – and enjoying it!

 

 

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