Monthly Archives: January 2015

30th January 2015

Family Update: A Few Photos from Wilfred’s First Birthday

10953674_1446257422263391_743884402_nWilfred turned one yesterday. My little baby is all grown up and I’m not sure whether to smile or cry! We did plan to have a little birthday party for him this morning, but I have been too ill to properly organise anything (bout of the flu, followed by a horrible chest infection) and Wilfred has been too ill to really enjoy his house being full of people and noise (an ear infection in both ears, followed by a nasty throat infection). So the party idea was scrapped and we decided to keep things small scale (after all, with the benefit of hindsight when you have your second baby, I knew he wouldn’t appreciate anything on a big scale anyway).

We are very lucky that Granny is staying with us at the moment on a visit from the UK, so we decided to spread the celebrations out over a couple of days. Yesterday was a regular day with nursery for Stanley and work for Daddy – so although we laid all his presents out in the lounge the night before, we didn’t open anything until the weekend arrived this morning. He did love his Early Learning Centre activity table though, which was his main present (and an inspired idea, he has been absolutely thrilled since he first set eyes on it yesterday morning). I also ordered a Teddy Bear’s Picnic cake through company Cindulge (Dubai mummies, you have to check out this talented lady’s page, I am so impressed with our cake!) so that was saved for today too – and without a party, we have a lot of cake to eat, but we are not complaining!

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photo 1 copy 410945689_794361843933579_8465092262772584764_nThat afternoon, I decided to take the boys to a play area as a birthday treat – so we piled in the car and headed to The Dubai Mall to spend an hour in Le Petit Palais Dubai. Located in Galleries Lafayette, this charming little play area is designed around a French village, compete with supermarket, petrol station, a large play house, and winding road with vehicles to drive around. There’s also a soft play/jungle gym area, craft room, and a-m-a-z-i-n-g party room (we saw what was in store for the lucky children coming in today and it was on another level!) If you happen to be in Dubai Mall with the kids, I really recommend letting them play here for an hour or two.

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After they have played for an hour, the toddler started barking ‘TEA! TEA TIME! TEA!’ so we made our way to Outback Steakhouse for a birthday tea. This place is such a hidden gem. Located on level two of the mall amongst the children’s shops, the restaurant itself is always quiet – and if walk through and head through the doors to the terrace outside, you will discover an incredible view overlooking Burj Khalifa (tallest building in the world ‘dontchaknow) and the amazing Dubai Fountains (tallest dancing fountains in the world). The sun was setting and the fountains started dancing, making a really quite spectacular setting for Wilf’s first birthday tea. Daddy had come to join us at this point and the adults had a few appetisers while Stanley and Wilfred tucked into mac-n-cheese and the sun set in front of us. Kind of don’t want to give this little secret away, but oops I’ve done it, so make sure you head there with the kids to avoid the crowds watching the fountains. photo 2 copy 3

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Friday is the weekend in Dubai – and after a lazy morning with pancakes and blueberries at home, we drove over to Ripe Market at Zabeel Park. This is one of our favourite things to do at the weekend at the moment – rows of food and crafty stalls under the shade of palm trees, plus great coffee and fresh lemonade to sip, kids’ play areas, a petting zoo and pony rides, and good friends. This morning, we met up with my friend Simone along with her family and friend Laura. The weather was beautiful – and even though it was busy, we all had a lovely time strolling around, making a few purchases, and letting Stanley run off some energy.

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We got home mid-morning and decided it would be perfect time to open presents and cut the cake. This mainly involved Wilfred crawling around eating wrapping paper, whilst his brother opened presents for him (you know how it is).

photo 1 copy 2photo 4 copyphoto 2photo 5photo 3photo 4Happy birthday little man! We can’t to watch you turn into a little boy over the next 12 months. Now I’m just off to pack away the steriliser…



28th January 2015

7 things I have learnt after a year of being a mum of two….

IMG_04031 – To embrace the chaos. With one child, I could just about maintain a sense of order at home. I felt fairly in control of the laundry pile, the toys were put away neatly every night, and I was able to stay in touch with friends and family pretty regularly. Baby number two was, as they say, the straw that broke the camel’s back. Most of the time, I am totally winging it. I don’t know whether the boys have got clean clothes for the next day, what they will be having for dinner that night, or whether I have replied to the text I received from a friend a few days ago. My mind is a complete sieve, but it’s IMG_0404OK. I have learnt to embrace this chaos and to enjoy it. I love my afternoons with my little family – and the fact everyone is happy is far more of a priority than whether the books are lined up nicely on the living room shelf.

2 – Life really does get easier. Rewind 12 months and I wouldn’t have believed you if you told me life would get easier so quickly. With feeds to fit around nursery runs, a toddler to watch like a hawk, and a baby to tip-toe into the nursery whenever he fell asleep (closely followed by the noisiest toddler on the planet), life was a complete juggle in the early days. But yesterday, as I was stood in the kitchen cooking dinner and listening to the boys playing together in the nursery next door, I realised that we had found our groove. And a lot of the time, shock horror, it wasn’t even me entertaining the baby.

3 – My guilt surrounds number two. When I was pregnant with number two, I worried all the time about the effect it would have on my precious first-born. I felt guilty about how his life would change and how my time would suddenly be split in two. However, I can safely say that I have rarely felt guilty for him in the 12 months he has had a sibling. Life pretty much continued as normal for Stanley – but for his little brother, the first 12 months has been so different to how it was the first time. He didn’t get the luxury of Mummy and Daddy exclusively for the first few years of his life and I have very rarely had time to take him to play-dates or classes.  I can rationalise this guilt as I know my love for this little person is just as strong as it was the first time, but it is something that has played on my mind at times during the last year.

4 – Life is on fast-forward. It’s such a cliché to say that time passes quickly when you are a Mum – but I have to say that it ramps up another notch when number two arrives on the scene. We have been so busy these past 12 months that each milestone and month has passed in a flash – and suddenly here I am with another toddler on my hands. Where did my baby go? I have no idea, but the headstrong, hilarious little man that has replaced him has taught me to enjoy every moment as it just goes too quick.

5 – Tiredness is a way of life. One child is tiring. Two children is exhausting. I can only imagine what it’s like to add another one or two into the mix. I quite literally can’t remember what it feels like to not be tired. Even if the boys have a good night (which is a rarity these days to be honest), I would need another 30 of them to catch up sleep. Tiredness burns the back of my eyes every morning, every afternoon, every evening – but I am so used to it that I don’t even really notice it any more. Also, I have learnt that coffee is often my very best friend.

6 – To accept help. With my first baby, I felt that I could and should do it all alone. Being an expat meant that I had very few people around to ask in the first place – but accepting help from paid nannies in the UAE and grandparents in the UK didn’t come naturally. In fact, I didnt even like leaving Daddy to it at the weekend to focus on myself for a few hours – essentially, I wanted to be superwoman. With number two, I realise this is totally impossible and I have had to learn to accept help. I understand now that I can’t do it all – I can’t work pretty much full-time hours, whilst being a full-time mum, keeping the house running, being a good wife and mother, and having time to relax and be myself occasionally too. I do now understand that there are limited hours in the day and I can’t do everything on my own.

7 – The sibling bond is intrinsic. Despite being 21 months apart and at very different points in their development and abilities, my boys really are best friends. They argue at times (the little one has finally started to defend himself and his toys after a year of having them snatched away) and  they often compete for my attention, but when they start playing together and I hear them howling with laughter, I realise there is nothing that can compare to that sibling relationship. It seems intrinsic – and on days when everything is a bit of a struggle, that is worth its weight in gold. It makes me realise that every little effort has been worth it – not just for me and my benefit, but for our family as a whole. This second little person has a very real place in our family unit and it is so wonderful to see this sibling bond develop and grow. I can’t wait to see what happens over the next 12 months.

Happy birthday for tomorrow my little Wilfred. We love you very, very much.



17th January 2015

Why I Blog

photoI have asked myself this question a lot recently.

I have always loved to write. When others might have phoned a friend for a chat, I wrote letters. I sat in my room and wrote short stories and magazine articles as a child. I wasn’t very good at things like science and mathematics at school; even though my exam grades were decent enough, I was bored silly. But in English lessons, I felt alive. Words spilled out of me and I knew from a very young age that I wanted to write, to be a writer, to be heard.

After studying English at university and sending my very first email (how strange to think that was just 12 years ago), I started working at a series of magazines and national newspapers in London. I found my way in fashion and beauty, compiling my own shopping pages and assisting on fashion shoots all over the world. I attended London Fashion Week season after season, and was invited to parties on a nightly basis. It was a fun, tiring, and very memorable time in my life; but it wasn’t enough. I wanted to write.

So in 2008, I handed in my notice and started my own online beauty magazine, writing reviews, news stories, and round-ups on a daily basis. Over the next few years, I got a dog, got married, moved to Dubai, and had my first baby – but throughout all of it, I kept publishing that website every single week. The website did well and I made regular money from it, but I was bored and it became a bit of a chore.

When Wilfred was born in January, lipstick and mascara just didn’t seem that relevant or important to my life anymore (given that most days, I didn’t even have time to apply it).  That reflected in the words I was writing and you could tell that I just didn’t care. I don’t regret starting my beauty website for one second and I learnt a lot of very valuable things about the online world, but I now realise that this was my ‘practice website’ – and the best was yet to come.

I started Mum of Boys in May 2014. Suddenly words and ideas were spilling out of me again and I found it refreshingly easy to write regular blog posts to help, inspire, or just make other mums laugh. Writing isn’t a chore anymore, in fact, it’s what I do in the evening to relax.

Of course, there have been moments of doubt. Should I put the boys in the public eye? Should I stop blogging and put all my photos of them in lockdown? Am I being too honest?

It’s something that is constantly on my mind since the website traffic started to spike. It’s been wonderful to see so many people are reading my words, but it’s been terrifying too (especially the few ‘hate comments’ I have received, which my friend Simone tells me is a mark of success, hello haters!)

But I am aware that the blog has given the boys lots of opportunities too, with a real incentive for us to go out and try exciting things, create yummy things in the kitchen, and make plans for the future. I don’t think that starting a blog is the answer for every family, of course – but for us, this blog gave me a virtual kick up the bum and that has to be a good thing.

I may not be a fashion stylist on location in New York anymore. I may not be a beauty journalist running around London in my 4-inch heels. But I am a Mum and suddenly people want to listen – and that seems apt, considering it’s the best thing I have ever done.

So that is why I blog. And I hope you are enjoying it.

 



16th January 2015

Slow Down Time, Please

IMG_5364It was a pretty average Monday night when I decided to run a bath for a long, hot wallow in some bubbles. I started gathering the boys’ bath toys up so I could climb into the water without foam letters and rubber ducks bobbing in the water next to me – and as I looked around for something nice to add to my bath, considering the bottle of baby bath for a second before deciding to aim a bit higher, I spotted some little bottles of essential oils I had bought late in my last pregnancy to help with healing once baby arrived (a tip I picked up when my friend Lucy gifted me Tea Tree Oil and Lavender Oil for my first baby).

Without even thinking, I took the lids off those bottles, and inhaled the scents. And just like that, BAM, I was taken back in time to newborn days. I could almost feel his warm little body in its velour sleepsuit as he fed, hear his hungry cries, and feel the tiredness stinging my eyes from all the broken nights. And as I sat in that bath, I felt so sad that I didn’t have that baby anymore, even though he was sleeping soundly in the room next door.

That’s the thing about parenting. It goes so quickly, doesn’t it? We count down the days to our due date and as soon as we get that bundle home, time seems to flip to fast-forward. We look forward to milestones, cheer when each new skill is ticked off the list, and plan birthday parties with excitement – and before we know it, we have a toddler, then a child, and then a young man. And just occasionally, when we have a moment to stop and think, we look at that child and think; ‘how exactly did that happen?

Of course, I don’t really want to return to those days. I want the gorgeous, cheeky, chubby 11-month old that I have now. I don’t want to return to middle of the night wake-up calls, scratchy breast pads, and trying to fit a newborn’s feeds around the nursery run. And I am certainly not ready to do it all again with round three. But as I sat there in the bath, I would have done anything for a cuddle with that newborn; to feel him, to sniff him, to look into his eyes. I feel like it passed so quickly that I can barely remember what it was like.

My time travel bath has reminded me to make the most of every moment – after all, this time next year, I will probably be sat in the same bath with foam letters floating past in the water, missing my chubby one-year-old and wondering how 2015 passed in such a blur. Slow down time please, I want to enjoy it.



14th January 2015

Things I Bought For My Baby That Were Totally And Utterly Useless…

yG2GCyVJCP3FvwlfAiQQDJ_us08wcv0HWThHgrqo1rQ,WkyiCi1jdH_qiAB3hfbrI3lK2ecdhaT_dwt8XLFS1QISCRATCH MITTENS. Oh cute, I thought. Little gloves, I thought. I’ll buy four sets, I thought. On the day he was born, I put on those little mittens, turned round to grab my camera at the cuteness – and by the time I turned back around, the things had disappeared. This repeated over the next few days, before I completely gave up. They have lived in the sock drawer ever since.

Lesson learnt: Buy babygrows that have the option of covering hands. Never buy mittens.

A MILK WARMER. For some unexplained reason, I thought I needed a snazzy electric milk warmer. In April. In Dubai. I used it twice – both times forgetting the milk was in there, allowing the milk to spill out the bottle and then evaporate. It has lived in the cupboard ever since. I mean to throw it away, but there’s always a worry at the back of my head: ‘maybe one day I will want to warm some milk’. I really should just throw it.

Lesson learnt: You do not need a milk warmer in the desert.

NEW BABY’ CLOTHES. When I was pregnant with Stanley, I waited until my 20 week scan to buy any clothes. And then I made a celebratory trip to Oxford Street to start his wardrobe as a way of admitting I really was growing a male human. I had done very little research about how quickly these male humans grow and purchased most of his wardrobe in ‘New Baby’ size. He wore most of these outfits once, perhaps twice if I really liked them. In terms of cost per wear, that trip to Oxford Street was more expensive than if I’d raided Selfridges for my own wardrobe.

Lesson learnt: Buy clothes in 0-3 months and 3-6 months

IMPRACTICAL CLOTHES. On the subject of clothing, I also wasted a lot of money on outfits that required a newborn baby to lie still for a totally implausible amount of time. Vests with dungarees over the top, for example. I didn’t even try getting the dungarees on him in the end. I got the vest on, admired it, held up the dungarees in an attempt to work out which bit to put over his head. After a few minutes, I threw them into a heap on the floor. So that was that.

Lesson learnt: Anything that requires more than a few poppers is an absolute waste of money.

A TOP AND TAIL BOWL. Whilst heavily pregnant, I saw on a list of essentials for your newborn a contraption called A Top and Tail Bowl. I waddled my way to the mall and bought one of these things. I still have absolutely no idea what exactly you are supposed to do with it. And it’s still collecting dust under the changing table holding some cotton wool, if my memory is correct.

Lesson leant: I still have no idea what to do with this plastic bowl.

A LIFETIME SUPPLY OF SIZE 1 NAPPIES. I thought I was being incredibly organized when I threw a pack of Size 1 Nappies into my trolley every few weeks during my pregnancy. I soon had an almighty stash. And then my son popped out at 7Ib7oz and only wore Size 1 nappies for a few nights before they leaked and we were told to move him up to Size 2.

Lesson learnt: Newborn baby does not guarantee newborn nappies.

BABY SHOES. As I worked through the list of what my baby needed, shoes seemed obvious. Of course he would need shoes! Why would he not need shoes? I bought several little leather pairs, a pair of mini ugg boots with his name embroidered on the back (cute, I thought), and a couple of mini converse just to be trendy. The first time I tried to put some on his feet, he curled his foot up in revolt. After several minutes trying to uncurl them and slip on the shoes simultaneously, I won that battle (YES!) and walked proudly out the door with the baby in the buggy. He looked so sweet in his shoes! A few minutes up the road, I looked down and one shoe was gone. And that was the end of that.

Lesson learnt: Babies do not need shoes

 



11th January 2015

Family Update: Eating Out With Kids

photo 3Eating out with kids. You have to be mad, right?

Well probably, but we are suckers for punishment and do it all the time. We have  taken Stanley out to eat since he was born, as our weekends kind of revolve around mealtimes – especially breakfast.  This probably says more about our love of food than our sanity, as I am personally prepared to go through hell to get my fix of eggs benedict and strong cappuccino on a weekend morning.

photo 1 copyStanley has always enjoyed eating out and been pretty well behaved (especially when a plate of fluffy pancakes is the reward), so we were blissfully unaware of the craziness that would follow when our second (usually a very placid and chilled child) was forced to sit in a high chair when he was dead set on crawling around the restaurant and giving the floor a taste test. Still, we persevere and it is getting easier (if I say it enough, I might believe it myself).

photo 4Yesterday evening, we were invited to eat at a very stylish new restaurant called Soul, located at Moevenpick Jumeirah Beach. This is about a 15 minute stroll from our apartment. We booked a table for 5pm, so that we could all eat dinner together.

If you live in Dubai or are visiting at some point soon, I highly recommend this restaurant. It’s essentially a New-York style brasserie that serves dinner from 5pm, with a great kids menu, high chairs available, and some the loveliest, kid-friendly staff I have come across in the city. Don’t be mistaken though – we are not talking about a brightly lit family-focused photo 2café with a play area here, but a very slick and trendy restaurant that serves whopping great steaks and sides, with low lighting, and uber-sylish décor. My husband and I could very happily eat here on our own in the evening, so it was a lovely treat to take the boys somewhere quite so fancy and discover it was so family friendly.

At 5pm, the place was empty apart from us, which was welcome relief as we had no one to disturb. The kids were excited as they tucked into their starter (a caterpillar of curry-flavoured toast, topped with cucumber) and later their photo 1mains (Stanley had spaghetti and sausages, Wilfred had some puree I bought along from home). And when they were finished and a bit tired, we sat them in front of The Gruffalo animation on the iPad while we tucked into our steaks. Helpfully, a lovely member of staff helped to entertain them while we finished up. With the time approaching 7pm, we knew we were pushing it in terms of their bedtime – and although we were tempted by desserts, we decided to head home before world war three erupted over a bowl of ice cream.

photo 5So what are my tips for successfully eating out with kids:

–       Pick the restaurant carefully. Researching child-friendly places is well worth the time, as having kids yelling in a quiet restaurant with piano music will only stress you out and ruin the experience. Having a toddler yelling: ‘MUMMY, DO YOU WANT THIS BOGEY?” is even more embarrassing when the couple next door are tucking into their soufflé.

–       Fill your bag with entertainment. I always have a pack of colouring crayons and photo 2 copyfolded-up paper in my nappy bag, along with lots of toys for Wilf. You can think outside the box too – sometimes a teaspoon, straw, and piece of spaghetti will keep the baby entertained for far longer than the colourful plastic in your bag.

–       Consider trapping the toddler. If your toddler will still accept sitting in a high chair, take advantage. Give them freedom on a chair of their own and the bottom shuffle will soon turn to dancing, which will soon turn to trying to escape. We kept Stanley in a high chair for as long as possible and he still occasionally photo 1accepts it, which makes dinner far easier.

–       Treat them. If you really want an enjoyable dinner, allow the kids a treat or two. You may serve them organic quinoa for their tea at home, but would you honestly pick that yourself from the menu when dining out? Make the meal an enjoyable one for everyone and you will all look forward to doing it again as a family soon. The best family-friendly restaurants turn healthy kids’ food into something fun – so if it’s really important to you to feed them healthily at all times, check out photo 3menus before you book a table.

–       Stay calm. Easier said than done when the baby is screaming, the toddler throws his apple juice into your lap, and you start noticing the diners around you glaring. These things have all happened to us during family dinners – and guess what, we never saw those people again (or if we did, they didn’t bother to come say hi). For those stressful times we’ve had, there have been far more that we have enjoyed. Some of my happiest memories are of family meals together, so don’t let the odd stressful moment put you off – they tend to happen with children photo 2occasionally wherever you are.

–       Remember the baby wipes. Especially if your child is partial to tomato spaghetti and you have to get him home without people around you gasping in horror. True story. Again.

Soul Restaurant is located at Movenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach, on JBR Walk close to Sadaf. Details are all here. The toddler apologises for getting tomato sauce on the seats.  I apologise for not having wipes to clean it up.



9th January 2015

Currently Loving – January 2015

I hereby vow to share a ‘Currently Loving’ post with you at least once a month throughout 2015, to give a brief recap to the things, shops, addresses, and websites that the boys and I have been enjoying recently. I promise to post an even spread of things in the UK and Dubai, so that all my readers are inspired. So without further ado, here are the things we have enjoyed in the last few weeks.

CURRENTLY LOVING JAN 15

1 – The Gruffalo’s Child – UK and Dubai

We’ve been fans of The Gruffalo for a while, but Stanley has suddenly developed an obsession over Christmas with sequel The Gruffalo’s Child. It’s an equally brilliant story by Julia Donaldson, with beautiful illustrations throughout the book. We love it so much that we bought it for several friends and relatives to enjoy over Christmas too. And on the way back to Dubai on our Emirates flight, they were showing the book’s stunning animation, which stars Helena Bonham Carter and James Corden, to name just a few. I will be downloading this on iTunes soon, but there is also a DVD available at Amazon.co.uk

Details: Both can be bought at Amazon.co.uk (Book and DVD).

2 – GAP Kids – UK and Dubai

It’s not very exciting or innovative to recommend GAP Kids, but I have to admit it is my go-to shop for the boys in both the UK and Dubai. I like to dress my boys in simple, comfortable basics that still look very stylish – so before we flew back to Dubai on Tuesday, I ran into store and stocked up (the prices are cheaper in the UK, but everything is still available here if you are a Dubai-based Mummy).

Details: Here for UK site. Here for UAE site.

3 – The Essential One – UK and Dubai

We ran a competition with The Essential One a few weeks ago, so I have already briefly introduced you to the company – but I wanted to tell you a little more. The online store is packed with baby wear and essentials in simple, basic, but very stylish designs. The company was kind enough to send me a few winter togs for Wilfred before we flew back to the UK in December (bearing in mind that he usually lives in vests) and I was seriously impressed with the quality of the clothes and the affordable price tags. If we ever have baby number three, I will be going on a big shopping spree – and I really recommend you do the same if you (or someone close to you) is expecting a little person soon. They are based in the UK, but will ship overseas, so mummies in the UAE can enjoy too.

Details: http://www.theessentialone.com

 4 – V Tech Kidizoom Twist Plus Camera – UK and Dubai

Stanley is 2 years and 8 months old and I did wonder if he was old enough for the V Tech Kidizoom Twist Plus Digital Camera that we bought him for Christmas. He does love taking a selfie with my phone, so I decided to go ahead – and thankfully it was a big success. This camera is brilliant; chunky, easy-to-grip, impossible to damage with a drop, but packed with features. Stanley spent hours clicking away at Christmas and I did plan to share his photos with you in a blog post, but on reflection realised the highlight was a photo of my Dad with no trousers on after he crashed his way into my parents’ room when they were getting dressed one morning – and he probably wouldn’t forgive me for sharing it… If you have a little person that is creative and fairly good with technology, it makes a brilliant gift.

Details: UK, buy at Amazon.co.uk for £43.99 here. UAE, buy it from Toys R Us for 475AED here.

5 – The Kings Head, Cirencester – UK

The husband and I escaped to The Kings Head in Cirencester, The Cotswolds on our trip to the UK last month, staying for two days without the children for our anniversary. Recommended to me by another Dubai-based Mummy, the hotel has been recently renovated and is on Cirencester’s high street, making it ideally placed for exploring this lovely Cotswold town. I absolutely adore this hotel and am already planning our next visit; think stylish, modern, comfortable, and very cosy. There’s free WiFi (though not the most reliable, so don’t plan a morning of work from your room like we did, yep we know how to live) with a plethora of fabulous restaurants, shops, and stunning countryside right outside. It was a dream break away and I highly recommend it for a kid-free break.

Details: http://kingshead-hotel.co.uk

6 – LeBazar Online Shopping – Dubai

I have been hunting for an online grocery delivery company that can rival those in the UK since I arrived in Dubai four years ago – and I have finally found it with Le Bazar. I tested the company out a few weeks ago and was seriously impressed. You start by logging on and making an online order from the range of over 5,000 items (which it will remember as ‘favourites’ to make life easier next time). You then choose your delivery slot for the next day. My order was confirmed by phone and delivered promptly the next day (without even a phone call for directions, which is practically unheard of with delivery drivers to my apartment). Everything came in strong plastic bags, with no swaps on my order (although this would happen if something was out of stock). The size of the portions of fruit and vegetables were amazing for the price I paid and it was very good quality too. It’s a life-saver for busy Dubai mums and I will be ordering again this week.

Details: http://lebazar.ae



8th January 2015

The Truth Behind The Pictures

I love taking photos of the boys. I love adding filters to make the photos look pretty and adding them to Instagram. But do they really tell the truth about what it’s like to be a Mum? Not always, so I thought I’d shed some light on it. Here goes – and if you want more, make sure you follow me on Instagram at @louisemumofboys…

PLAY PARK

FLYINGICE LOLLYSUPERMAKETRUGBY TACKLETODDLER SELFIESANTA CLAUS

chatHATFACE PAINTINGDUCKSDADDYS DAYAQUARIUMBABY



5th January 2015

Goodbye UK, See You Again Soon!

We have had a lovely three weeks back in the UK, but the time has come to fly back to Dubai for another stint in the desert. Being back in the cold, with such a festive feel in the air, was just what we all needed to have a break from the big city – and seeing so many friends and family made it one of the best trips home we have ever had.

I feel a bit heavy hearted about our flight back to Dubai in the morning as I hate goodbyes – but I love Dubai and I am very happy with our life there, so I know my spirits will pick up the minute we see the bright city lights as we travel home in the taxi. I am very excited about 2015. I have grand plans for the year ahead (watch this space) and I can’t wait to see Wilfred grow into a toddler and Stanley grow into a little boy over the next 12 months. We also have a first birthday (gulp) in 3 weeks to plan and look forward to.

I could write an epic blog post telling you about all the things we did on our trip home, but I think you’d get very bored – so instead, here is our trip home in a quick film.

See you again soon UK – we are already counting down the days until we see you again.



2nd January 2015

A Christmas Round-up by Wilfred, aged 11 months

photo copy– I liked my stocking. It had a tassel I could pull, which I enjoyed for a few minutes while Mummy pulled paper off things and made excited noises. The paper was nice, I ate it.

– I got a toy remote control as a present. I was not fooled. I threw it away and found the real remote. Then I ate it.

–  My big brother’s new toys were more exciting than mine. Grabbing them when his back was turned was a challenge I took very seriously. Then I ate them.

– Mummy gave me a nice breakfast of scrambled egg. It was so yummy that I sneezed it all over her dress first thing in the morning. She changed into a jumper and leggings after that, which I liked better.

– The big people seemed annoyed that I only slept for 17 minutes at lunchtime. When I came downstairs, they were all sat around a table in red hats. There wasn’t a place laid for me so I can only surmise that I wasn’t invited to the party. It was boring, so I entertained myself trying to grab plates, cutlery, and cracker toy presents every time one moved within my reach. Then I ate them.

– I liked the Christmas tree. I worked out where they had plugged the lights in the wall and played a brilliant game where I crawled over and tried to pull it out every time the big people had their backs turned. They built all kinds of things to stop me, which made the game even more exciting.

– There are so many people in the house at Christmas that you can easily sneak past them and get into the dog’s bowl.

– However hard Mummy tried to disguise brussel sprouts in my food, I was not fooled. I immediately spat them out in revulsion and threw them onto the floor. They are disgusting.

– New Year’s Eve was fun. I selflessly stayed asleep throughout the night so the big people could have as much fun as they wanted – and ten minutes after they came to bed, I woke up so we could play. I think they liked that.