#Blogtober17 – Day 11 – Kitchen

Picture the scene, for whatever morbid reason, you’re about to die. But…before you do, you get one last meal. It can be as simple or as extravagant as you like. What would it be?

I love playing this game so decided to ask lots of lovely bloggers what they would choose…hope this doesn’t make you too hungry!

Jemma said “Pate for Starter, the best steak money could buy for main (medium), sweet potato fries and mushrooms for Main and for Pudding…Profiteroles!”

Lianne chose Salt and Chilli Squid to start, Seafood Risotto for main and New York Cheesecake for pudding – YUM!

Pete decided he’d have a Prawn Cocktail to start, Roast Beef for main and warm Chocolate Fudge Cake with cream for pudding. A very British meal!

Becky from Mommy and Rory, Nicole from The Littlest Darlings, Jade from Mummies Waiting

Katy from Katy Kicker, Ally from SMLDiet Blog

and many more chose a Roast Dinner for their main meal!

Luis from Single Daddy Daycare would go all out he says…

“Dominos Meteor Pizza to start, Fillet Steak, Fries and Coleslaw for main and a big slice of Chocolate Fudge Cake for dessert with Cream…although I realise now why it would be my last meal as I’d probably die of a heart attack if I ate all that!”


I’m personally obsessed with Mexican food so would choose:

Loaded Nachos to start followed by Spicy Beef and Beans Fajitas with all the mix ins and then…

a mixing bowl full of Raspberry Eton Mess for dessert!

What would you choose? Let me know in the comments below!

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I love a good joke, the sillier the better!

Today’s prompt for #Blogtober17 is Joke, so I asked a mixture bloggers and friends alike to tell me their funniest joke, here I’ve listed my faves!

How do you make a sausage roll? …. Push it down a hill!

What kind of bee’s make milk? ….. BOOBIES! 

One snowman turns to another…”Do you smell carrots?” 

Knock, knock. Who’s there? Lettuce. Lettuce who? Lettuce in, it’s cold out here!

What do you call a dinosaur with no eyes? …. “Doyouthinkhesaurus?!” 

I went to the zoo once. It only had one dog. It was a ‘shih-tzu’!

What goes 99 bonk, 99 bonk? …. A centipede with a wooden leg!

What do you call a deer with no eyes? …. No idea. What do you call a deer with no eyes and no legs? …. Still no idea!

Why can’t a car play football? … Because it only has one boot!

What do you call a sheep on a trampoline? …. A woolly jumper! 

What’s the fastest cake in the world? … Scone!

What do you call a three legged donkey? A wonkey!

How do you find Will Smith in the snow? … Just look for his Fresh Prints!

Do you want to hear the joke about the pizza? …. I wouldn’t! It’s too cheesy!

Why did the bald man stick his head out the window? …. To get some fresh ‘hair’!

If you think an onion is the only vegetable to make you cry…then you’ve never been hit in the head by a turnip!

Why don’t you ever see elephants hiding in trees? … Because they’re really good at it!

What do you do if a bird poo’s on your head? …. Finish with her!

And to finish…it’s long but worth it!

Jesus, Moses and an old man are playing golf.

Jesus tees off first and his ball goes in the water; he walks across the top of the pond, dips his club in, chips the ball out and it goes in the hole.

Moses steps up next and his ball also goes in the water; he dips his club in the pond, the pond separates and he chips his ball off the pond bed and into the hole.

The old man then tees off and his ball is about to go in the water when a fish leaps out of the pond and catches the ball in its mouth. A bird then flies by and grabs the fish. As the bird flies over the green a bolt of lightening hits the bird, the bird drops the fish, the fish hits the green and the ball rolls out of its mouth into the hole.

Hole in one.

Jesus then looks at the old man and says, “Dad, if you’re going to piss around we won’t bother!”

Hope you got in a few giggles!

Let me know your funniest joke in the comments below!


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#Blogtober17 Catchup! Days 6,7,8&9

Well, I got a bit forgetful, or busy, or whatever other excuse I came up with at the time and missed a few days off this challenge! Determined not to give up, I’m doing a mass catch up…

Day 6 – Flowers

I don’t really buy flowers that often, and I’m not often bought flowers! However I’m a bit obsessed at the moment as my lovely Mom has recently become engaged! I have been asked to be ‘Maid of Honour’, with Issy being Flowergirl and Alfie being Ring Barer. We’re all super excited, the kids are obsessed with her partner and his three girls, already calling him Grandad and having fun calling the girls ‘Aunty’. The Pinterest board has begun and we are looking at Wildflower bunches and matching headdresses! For my wedding, we had dried wheat mixed with fake flowers in a burgundy. I still have my bouquet now and will keep it forever 🙂

Let me know in the comments what your flowers were like, or what you’d like them to be like!

Day 7 – Goals

I’ve done many posts about my goals and dreams in life so I’m going to dedicate this one to my lovely husband, who is currently top goal scorer for his local football team! Okay, so it’s the start of the season and it’s only three goals, but we are all super proud of him, especially as he normally plays in defence!

Go Daddy!

Day 8 – Holidays

This year we went camping with two other families, we enjoyed it so much the first time, we went again! For our first trip we went to a commercialised holiday park, however the second time we went to a more low key campsite which was pretty much just a field! We much preferred the field, it was great to just BBQ, listen to music and play lots of funny board games. I also had a lot of fun with my face paints!

I’d love to go abroad soon, but with so many weddings happening next Summer, it looks like we’ll stick to camping until the year after.

Day 9 – Ice Cream!

Well, as you might have noticed from my logo…I’m a bit obsessed with ice cream! There’s nothing better than a big tub of Strawberry Cheesecake Haagan Dasz after a crappy day. Or after a good day!

Today I had my first post baby job interview, which was pretty nerve-wracking. I haven’t had an interview since I was around 18 so I was pretty clueless. I decided a few months back that it is finally time to return to the work life, it’s been over three years since I have had a ‘proper’ job and I’ve finally had enough of staying at home and just being ‘mum’. I want to do something for me, I want to be Jess, not “Issy/Alfie’s Mum”. So I started applying and got my first interview!

I Googled like mad and prepped myself on the ‘typical interview questions’ and it ended up being the complete opposite to what I expected! It was so casual, the interviewer and I had a great rapport and really clicked. So much so that I have a trial shift tomorrow evening!

Here I am treating myself to a celebratory ice cream after my interview.

Wish me luck for tomorrow when I’ll hopefully be eating another celebratory treat, or drowning my sorrows in a whole tub…either way, at least I get ice cream! 😉

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#Blogtober17 – Day 4 – Date


Date night’s for everyone!

We all know that once we become parents, dating can sometimes be the last things on our minds. Once we do think about it, there’s always something that gets in the way; either money, babysitters or just plain exhaustion!

I’ll be honest, whenever I try Googling “Date Night Ideas”, I vomit a bit in my mouth. We’re not really the types to ‘make a time capsule’ or ‘lay under the stars and just talk’.

So here are my tips to get in some ‘couple time’ for the less soppy among us.

Make dinner together.

You may do this already, but it’s a great way to spend some time together. Some nights we wait until after the kids are in bed, then turn on the radio and have a little dance whilst cooking. Well, I tend to dance and he cooks!

Shop at Tesco? Quadruple your Clubcard points and get a ‘free’ dinner!*

We are new to this, but are so far obsessed! Go online and for every £2.50 in Clubcard points, you get £10 to spend in some fantastic restaurants. It feels like a free meal! We save all of our points for this reason and have eaten out at some lovely places!

Get into a box set.

We settled on Game of Thrones, then watched all six seasons in the space of two months before the Season 7 premiere! It became our ‘thing’ we would eagerly wait for the kids to go to bed before dashing to put an episode on. Some nights we’d watch two or three at a time. It was then a talking point. From what we thought would happen next, to finding out about the actors ‘real lives’ and of course tagging each other in funny GOT memes! It was nice to have something to talk about that engaged us both, that didn’t involve the kids or work!

Board games and puzzles.

We love board games! We host a regular family games night with friends, however sometimes we get them out on our own. Make alcoholic forfeits and you’re sorted for a hilarious night in!

Alcohol forfeits!

If board games aren’t your cup of tea, you can really make anything into a game of chance. From watching GBBO and shotting every time someone is given a ‘special handshake’ to X Factor and guessing from the intro as to whether the act will be good or bad (loser has to drink). Anything can be made fun with alcohol!

Netflix and Chill.

Yeeeeaaaah…we all know what that means nowadays 😉 But hey, needs must! Don’t have any money this month? Get the Grandparents to have the kids for the night and then go straight back home! Buy some snacks, spend an hour choosing a film that you’re not really going to watch, snuggle and get to it!

Babysitter swap.

If you aren’t lucky enough to have any willing Grandparents around, why not do a babysitter swap? Make a deal with some friends, you have their kids one weekend, and they’ll have your kids the next! It’s a win – win, and the kids will love it! And no money needed – see above 😉

Have any more tips? Let me know in the comments below!


*This is not an ad. I genuinely shop at Tesco and use Clubcard points for date nights!

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#Blogtober17 – Car

Car - #Blogtober17

Today’s prompt is ‘Car’.

Well, I don’t drive, and I don’t particularly like cars…however, Alfie does!

I guess it’s one of those nature V nurture questions…how is my little boy obsessed with vehicles when he spends most of his time with his Mama and Big Sister who literally pretend the things don’t exist?

We will be walking down the high street and he will literally shout “Car!” or “Brrrrooommm!” at every passing car, “Bike, Brrooommm!” at every passing motorcycle, and don’t even get me started on buses! He becomes beyond excited “Mama! Bus! Mamaaa! Buuusss!” having to stop and watch it pass by.

It can be a bit annoying at times, although it does make using public transport quite fun. Both kids now love getting the bus into Exeter, especially when we get to sit on the top at the front of a double decker! It certainly has turned what was once a chore into a fun experience.

Do you have any vehicle obsessed little ones?


Why not checkout the hashtag #Blogtober17 to see what other bloggers have been writing about today?

See you tomorrow! 🙂


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#Blogtober17 – All about me

#blogtober17 - all about me

You may have noticed I’ve lot my blogging mojo a bit recently, so when I learnt about #Blogtober17, a 31 day blogging challenge, to post one blog a day for the whole of October, I just had to get involved!

The lovely Mandi from Hex Mum has created this fantastic blogging challenge, with 31 prompts for each day of October.


I’m so excited to have a bash at each prompt, hopefully I come up with some good stuff!

So here is my first post…

All about me!

For ‘All about Me’ I’ve decided to do a ‘Ten things you didn’t know about me…’

So here we go!

  1. I bite my nails. It’s an awful, gross habit but I can’t stop myself. And I’m not one of those little nibblers, they are properly gnawed to the quick. I do it when I’m anxious, bored, excited…pretty much whenever. I might stop one day…but I doubt it!
  2. I was originally born in Canada. My parents moved us over here when I was around 3/4 so don’t have many memories of living there, but we did return every other year for most of my childhood to visit family. My most treasured memories are those made during those family holidays, visiting the grandparents and my many, many, Aunts, Uncles and cousins!
  3. I hate feet. I just think they are really weird. I have an awful bunion on my right foot so can never fit shoes properly and avoid sandals at all costs!
  4. My Mom wanted to call me Isabel, but my Dad said no due to the joke ‘Is a Bell on a Bicycle’. As soon as she told me, I was distraught, I hated the name Jessica and Isabel sounded so pretty! From that point on, I named all of my dolls Isabel and would pretend to be Isabel during role play. It somehow grew to Isabella and as I got older, I told everyone that it would be the name of my first daughter, including my now husband. Luckily he liked the name too, I don’t know what we would have done if he hadn’t!
  5. I love watching reality telly. Pretty much anything made by MTV so Geordie Shore, Ex on the Beach and my new favourite Just Tattoo of Us. I’m obsessed. I don’t know why, but I find it so relaxing to watch all these ‘celebrities’ to get drunk and silly.
  6. I have a birth mark. It’s a strawberry mark on my right arm. When I was younger, it was huge, bright red and bulged out of my arm. I was often teased for it, so would always wear jumpers or cardigans in school, even during the hot summers. As I’ve got older, it has stretched with my skin and is now barely visible. I’m so glad my Mom decided against laser surgery, as all it would have done would be change the red to grey, which would make it a lot more visible now!
  7. I have grey hair. I got my first grey hair when I was around 13/14 and have been dying my hair ever since. My Great Grandma went grey (well white, Betty Crocker Style!) at 16 and my Grandma started going grey (a beautiful silver) at 18. I have decided on my 50th Birthday I am going to dye my whole hair white and just embrace it!
  8. My music taste is still stuck in my childhood. My kitchen radio is constantly blaring out either The Corrs, Dido or Nelly Furtado and I sing the kids to sleep with classics such as McFly’s “It’s all about you” and S Club 7’s “Two in a Million” (sometimes adapted to ‘Three in a Million’).
  9. I am OBSESSED with Halloween! I was so gutted when I realised we would not be able to have Trick or Treaters come to our house due to it’s back alley location. We have started a new tradition of going to my Moms as she lives in a little village and going mad with the decorations! I’m so excited to take the kids out this year!
  10. I am having a massive birthday celebration for my 25th this year. Due to endometriosis, pregnancy or breastfeeding I haven’t properly had a birthday celebration since my 18th! All of my friends are getting dressed up as OAPs and doing a ‘Train Crawl’ (like a pub crawl, but on a train, stopping at a pub at each stop!) I am childishly excited, I can’t wait!

So there you have it…now you know a bit more about me!

If you liked this, why not search the hashtag #Blogtober17 to find some other fantastic bloggers joining in with this fab challenge.

See you tomorrow! 🙂

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Selling Old to Buy New

selling old to buy new

Selling Old to Buy New!

If you’ve read my previous posts, you’ll know I’m already starting to get into a panic over Christmas. We always tend to spend too much money and this year I am determined to stick to a budget.

Not long ago Mumsnet* contacted me asking me to test out eBay’s selling function. With insomnia still hovering over me, I am a frequent late night eBay buyer but have never actually sold anything. I’ve dabbled in Facebook selling groups without much success, so thought I’d give eBay a shot.

I decided to sell some of the kids old clothes to fund their Christmas outfits this year. I always like to dress them up on Christmas day, preferably so we all match, so this tends to get quite expensive!

One of my listings was my daughters gorgeous Christmas dress from a few years ago, it was only worn the once and I just love the fact that another little girl will get to enjoy it as much as she did, and for a bargain price too!

I don’t have a camera so decided to do it all on my phone by downloading the eBay app.

The listing process is 4 simple steps. Of course, the more information you provide, the more helpful it is to the potential buyer:

*Snap it* Treat the pic of your item like a selfie. Have good lighting and make sure you take several shots.

*Write it* – Use keywords to write a description of your item that is interesting, informative, and of course, honest!

The more information you put in the title, the more the app automatically fills details in for you! 

*Price it* – Have you got a price in mind? Choose buy it now. If not, have fun with it and see what you can make with an auction style sale.

*Post it* – Want them to come to you? Choose local pick up. Happy to post it? Then do exactly that.

This is a great feature, the postage was automatically calculated based on listings similar to mine. I always wonder what to charge for postage, this way I didn’t have to!

The whole process took around 5 minutes, including taking pictures. I’ve listed my items for Auction for 14 days, I’m quite excited to see if anyone will battle to win!


*I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity. [I have received a voucher as a token of thanks for this post].

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Admission for Reception Classes starting September 2018

Admission for Reception Classes starting September 2018

Admission for Reception Classes starting September 2018

I can’t believe it’s nearly here. Next year my baby girl will be going to SCHOOL!

If like me, you are a bit boggled by the process of how to apply for your child’s place at ‘Big Kid School’ then this is for you. I’ve done all the research, read the entire 56 page document (multiple times) and made it seem easy – almost!

Every year, Devon County Council receives between 7,000 and 8,000 applications for children to start in Reception.

Normal round applications are co-ordinated by local authorities across the country so that every child is offered a place at a school on the same day.

Co-ordination makes the system fairer and more transparent. Every child should be offered a place but none should have more than one offer as that would mean other children could be refused their application. With co-ordinated admissions, parents name the schools they want to apply for on one form, no matter where the schools are in England. Parents can’t choose which school their child attends, but can choose the schools they apply for.
Note that attendance at a nursery attached to a school does not give you any priority for a place at that school.

The Admission to Reception Classes for September 2018 is for children born between 1 September 2013 and 31 August 2014 (aged 4+ on 1 September 2018).

  • Round opens: 15 November 2017
  • Round closes: 15 January 2018

Here’s my Top 5 tips…

1. Check out which school catchment you are in by clicking here.

Find out which schools are your designated schools. You do not have to choose your designated school however you are more likely to get accepted if you do.

2. Go and visit them

There is nothing better than actually visiting the school. You can get a feel for the school and see so much in a 30 minute visit that no reports will be able to tell you. Trust your instinct! Some will do open days and some will let you see the school on a normal day. Give them a call to see when you can visit.

I’ll be taking Issy along to our preferred school with a friend who has a daughter the same age. We are hoping that them being together might make the visit more exciting and not so daunting! I’ll let you know how that goes soon!

3. Check out the attainment data for the school

This little site with OFTED’s Data Dashboard is really useful. It will show you how near the national average each school is on reading, writing and maths.

4. See what it’s last OFSTED report said

Now these need to be read in a certain way. Often they will highlight things that need improving more than they will praise a school. Take it with a pinch of salt.


As a parent in Devon you have the option to apply for up to 3 schools. Put these in order of preference. REMEMBER! Preference is not the same as choice: you cannot choose a particular school.

Be ready, know your options and make sure you fill in the online form with all the relevant information on time!

You have until Sunday 15th January to submit your application!

If your application is late, you may be responsible for transport to and from a school further away from your home.

National Offer Day will be on 16 April 2018.


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Tossing and turning.

My period started. It was late and it was heavy. And suddenly my whole world was turned upside down. I couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned then tossed some more. My mind a whirl of to do lists and what ifs and panic and constant noise and I couldn’t turn it off no matter how hard I tried. I stopped going to bed. If I didn’t go to bed then I didn’t toss and turn and think and worry and panic. So my husband kissed me goodnight and I stayed upstairs and instead of tossing and turning and thinking. I watched telly, but not really concentrating. Just thinking, and worrying, and panicking.

When I’m doing something that I truly believe is good, I’m flying! I’m happy and singing and loving and being. But I can’t always be doing. Yes, I’m happy but I’m also exhausted. Because I don’t seem to be able to do things by halves. It’s all or nothing. Go big or go home.

I decided to have a break. And it was the break that broke me.

Whenever I have my down days, I normally think about running away. I look at holidays online and wonder how much my husband would hate me if I just went to Spain for a few weeks. To live another life, just for a moment.

But this time, I started thinking about what would happen if I just went away all together. Maybe everyone elses lives would just be easier if I weren’t here at all? The kids wouldn’t remember me that’s for sure. I try to do all this good for others but maybe it’s just not worth it anymore?

I didn’t do anything. But I thought about it. And to me, that is scary enough.

I’ll be honest. The main reason wasn’t because of others, but my selfish self. I was scared of the pain. Not of the loss. Of the mistakes. The perfectionist in me screamed – What if it didn’t work? What if I became paralyzed or just sick, what if it just made my life even worse than it is already?

I shook myself out of it. I don’t really remember how. I went downstairs and checked on the children, I stroked their hair and kissed their soft little cheeks then went to bed and cuddled my husband. He asked me if I was okay.

“I’m fine” – I replied.

Morning came and I couldn’t get up. My husband agreed to take our daughter to nursery an hour earlier so I didn’t have to take her and I slept. My son didn’t stir, or if he did, I didn’t hear. And I dreamed.

It felt like hours had passed, I dreamed that I had slept all day and missed picking up my daughter. I could hear people coming into my house but no one was there. Thumping on the stairs and in the room above but whenever I tried to lift myself out of bed to check, I was stuck. A giant weight on top of me. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t breathe. I managed to get to my phone and text my friend. She called and the weight started to lift. I called the Doctors office and they agreed to call back once my Doctor became available.

She picked up my daughter and brought her to me, she got my son out of bed and dressed and fed him. I finally felt ready to get out of bed too. We talked and we cried. When I saw my friend cry, crying because she was worried about me, I knew I truly needed help. She took over. I sat in an almost trance as she called the Health Visitors, my psychologist and the Doctors office again. She called a friend to look after my children whilst she took me to the Doctors surgery.

She sat with me whilst I told my Doctor the truth, she rubbed my arm and told me I was being so brave. We often joke about the fact I couldn’t live without her, but honestly, I don’t know what I would do without her.

The Doctor gave me some more meds, something to help me sleep and did some referrals. The Crisis Team for me and the ‘Safeguarding Hub’ to make sure they are doing everything they can to support me looking after my children. I agreed to these referrals. I will do anything to ensure the safety of my children, especially from myself.

I do sometimes take my emotions out on my children. I am easily frustrated, I am not patient. I shout easily but I try to stay stern. I always make sure I leave the room when it all gets too much. I try not to let them see me cry too often.

I’m lost. I have been deemed ‘in crisis’. I have lots of professionals working with me, however this ‘status’ unfortunately means that the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) we have been progressing so well with will have to be paused until I have been cleared.

I’ve crashed. The crash that I knew was coming. But this time I’ve crashed harder than I ever have before.

I expect it’ll take longer than before to climb again, and I’ll certainly need a lot more help…

I hope to one day find the balance between my soaring highs and these dreadful lows.

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Christmas Anxiety in July?

christmas anxiety in july

It doesn’t take a lot to panic me nowadays.

My husband was working, on a Saturday. It turns out I can just about keep sane 5 days in a row, but that 6th day and I go completely nuts.

It started out well, Issy played upstairs until 11am whilst Alfie and I slept. Then he woke and all went a bit kooky.

I was casually scrolling through Facebook when a post about Christmas presents budgets came up. I then started thinking … I don’t even know what we’re going to get the kids yet.

What is our budget? It certainly can’t be some of the high numbers being chucked around on this post!

We did £100 each last year but as they didn’t have a main present each it ended up being a lot of stuff they haven’t wanted to keep.

I started to feel overwhelmed. Where are we going to put more toys? We’re going to have to get rid of some.

Next thing I know I’ve got the kids filling up black bags and a few Asda crates from when the delivery guy just left our order outside our front door!

It was only the other day and I already can’t remember what we kept and what was given away.

I tried to make it fun, explain we were giving their toys to be sold to other little girls and boys, so the money can help poorly people.

But inside I was jumbled.

My heart thumbing in my chest. I wasn’t able to keep still for even a minute.

Once the playroom was pretty clear, we moved to the shed where I decided the huge box of clothes that don’t quite fit Issy anymore should go…along with the clothes we have in larger sizes for when Alfie is bigger.

I don’t know why but I needed to get rid now. I needed that space.

Once we’d heaved four black bags and a large storage container of clothes to the charity shop a few doors down I felt relief.

Then I started to think about Christmas presents again.

Before I knew it I had agreed to buy second hand bikes for each of them on a selling site, had downloaded my Christmas organiser app and decided what to buy everyone on my list and obviously budgeted accordingly.

My thoughts went into overdrive. I’ve looked back at my messages and I contacted over 30 different people, messaging about their bike sales post in just under 30 minutes. I knew I could type fast but jeez. I couldn’t stop myself. I was jittery.

I felt like I was moving, tapping, constantly. Nails bitten to the point that the skin around the sides bled. My hair greasy from rubbing my hands through it goodness knows how many times. Sweating. Hot flushes. I tried to focus my breathing and calm down.

I was so focused on my task that I left the kids to it. I heard shouts from Issy and discovered she had done a pee in the potty (brilliant) but Alfie was now splashing it about everywhere! I shouted no and stop but he wouldn’t listen. It was like I wasn’t even there. I flipped in an instant. I snapped and took him to his bedroom. It was 6.15 and he hadn’t napped so I decided he could just go to bed.

I crawled into bed and cried.

Oh hello crash, I thought you’d be showing your face soon.

At least I’m now sorted for Christmas…in July…

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