Summer Bucket List 2018

For the past few weeks, the weather has been pretty awful where I live, and I have not been able to get out with the girls as much as I would like to. Instead of getting down about all the things that I can’t do I decided to write a summer bucket list of all the things that I want to do with the girls as the summer months approach. I hope you enjoy reading my list and I would love to hear some ideas of what you plan on doing this summer.

1. Visit the National Museum of Scotland

Although the girls are relatively young, I think that they would enjoy looking around at the exhibits. The last time that I was at the museum was when I was at college studying Administration and IT 5 years ago and have been desperate to go back since. There is so much to look at and so many interactive activities I think that the girls will enjoy the day and will be an excellent activity for a rainy or cold day.

2. A picnic on the beach

Last year the girls absolutely loved going to the beach on the few hot days that we managed to get in Scotland. As soon as the girls set foot on the sand, they would begin to rip their clothes off so they could run about naked having the time of their lives. I can’t wait for the sun to be back so that we can have some picknick days at the beach.

3. A trip to the zoo

I feel like the summer wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the zoo. When my dad and I took the girls to the zoo last year I honestly don’t know who was more excited, the girls or I. Gabriella, even a year after still talks about seeing all the animals. I think that this year they will both appreciate it even more and the day will be even more exciting. I need to remember and take plenty of snacks with us because the girls both got quite hungry with all the walking.

4. Visit Dynamic Earth

I haven’t been to dynamic earth in years and have been really wanting to take a trip there with the girls. It is a science centre in Edinburgh that explores the earth and how it was created. Although Gabriella and Ava are still young and won’t fully understand the science, I think that there is more than enough there that will spark their imagination and excite them, plus I really want to go.

5. Make a fairy garden

I have been looking on Pinterest and seen a lot of fairy gardens and thought that they looked like a great addition to the garden. Gabriella and Ava both like the idea of fairies so I think that they would find it a really magical activity and it could be something that we continue to add to throughout the year.

6. Get back into my Miss Sixty jeans

This one is more of a personal goal for me, but I wanted to add it to the list as well. Since having the girls, my weight has gone up and down, and I want to put some focus on myself for once and make the final push to get back into my favourite pre-baby jeans.

7. Go for a more family walks

When I was younger, I used to absolutely love going for walks and exploring. We are fortunate to live close to so many beautiful nature reserves and estates that are amazing to go for walks. Now that Gabriella and ava are old enough to go for a longer adventure I want to make the most of it once the weather warms up. I love the idea of going for scavenger hunts, and I think that the girls would too.

8. Finish painting the house

I have lived in this house for almost three years and still, am not finished painting. Although I know that this place isn’t going to be a long-term, forever home I am sick of it not being at least be painted. I grudge spending much money on the house itself because I know I don’t want to be here for a long time but I do want it to feel more homely.

9. Potty train the girls

I think I am pretty much done potty training with Gabriella. We just need to build up confidence going when we are out in public and when she is at daycare. Ava has begun to use the potty in the house, but I want to take full advantage of the warmer weather when I can put the girls in dresses and skirts which will make potty training a lot less messy and reduce the amount of laundry that comes with potty training.

10. Have fun

This summer I want to make sure not waste a single day. Whether we have a big day out or just a quiet day playing at home, I want to have fun and enjoy myself. As the girls are getting older, I am becoming more and more aware of how quickly time goes. I really want to learn how to ‘live in the moment’ a lot more and appreciate each day. After all, the girls will never be this young ever again, and I just want to make the most of it and enjoy spending time with them and making memories.

World Book Day 2018

To celebrate world book day I have comprised a list of 4 of our favourite children’s books to read together. I love reading books with Gabriella and Ava as it is such an excellent bonding activity and watching their imagination come alive as we read together is so precious. Another thing I enjoy about reading with the girls is the opportunity to start conversations and open up new topics to discuss. I would love to hear what some of your favourite books to read with your children are too.

1. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls – Elena Favilli (Author),‎ Francesca Cavallo (Author)

This is a factual book that tells the story of 100 amazing women both past and present. The book is illustrated beautifully by 60 women and was very quick to become one of my favourite books. What is so great is that the book shows a range of women from scientists to activists. Some of the themes that the book contains are quite grown up, although the way that the book is cleverly written it makes it understandable and appropriate for children. We keep the book next to the girl’s beds with a globe so that as we are reading, we can look at where about in the world the women are from. It’s a book that I think all children would benefit from, not just girls and it opens so many great conversations that you can have with your children.

2. Room on the Broom – Julia Donaldson (author), Axel Scheffler (illustrator)

Gabriella and Ava both love this book and it is by far one of their favourites. They both wanted to dress up as the witch for world book day. The story follows a witch and her cat that go out flying on her broom over mountains and forests. Unfortunately the witches hat, then bow and wand fall off in succession. Luckily the witch receives help from a frog, a dog, and a bird and helps her to retrieve her items before being faced with a terrifying dragon! Firstly, I like that the witch is portrayed as a kind and helpful character. I also really enjoy how it is written. It has a lot of repetition and rhyming which means that both girls can join in when listening to the book and know most it off by heart.

3. The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child – Julia Donaldson (author), Axel Scheffler (illustrator)

I feel like The Gruffalo is an absolute classic children’s story. I remember reading it when I was younger and enjoy reading it to the girls. It follows the story of a mouse that is travelling through the woods and encounters a fox, owl and a snake and tells each of them he is going to meet a Gruffalo. To the mouse’s surprise, he actually does bump into the Gruffalo! The sequel, The Gruffalo’s child, tells the story of the Gruffalo’s daughter who goes into the wood to find out about the big bad mouse that her dad had told her stories about. While in the woods she bumps into the fox, owl and snake on her quest to find the big bad mouse. Both books, The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child, are illustrated incredibly well with each page containing so much detail. The books have lots of repetition, and both girls, especially Gabriella knows the books almost word for word.

4. Moon – Patricia Hegarty (author), Britta Teckentrup (illustrator)

Firstly, this book is absolutely beautiful. The illustrations are so captivating and different to anything else that we have. It’s dark yet vibrant and looks so eye-catching on the bookshelf. One of the reasons it is my favourites is that I feel like it is such a great bedtime story. It’is about night-time around the world and shows what different animals get up to during the night. In addition to this, each page has a cut out that you can follow moon at different stages of its lunar cycle. Again it’s one that we like to use our globe with so that we can refer to and see where the animals are in the world.

The Beginning

After years of wanting to start my own blog, I’ve decided to take the plunge and go for it. This year I am wanting to put more focus on doing what makes me happy.

I am 22, born Romania and adopted to Scotland just before my second birthday. I have two daughters, Gabriella, who is almost 3 and Ava who is almost 2. The girls completely transformed my life for the better. Becoming a parent has definitely had its ups and downs and has forced me to face many difficult emotions I had not dealt with surrounding my adoption.

The main reason I wanted to start this blog was to document my journey through motherhood. Growing up I had always been desperate to have children and it has been a life changing experience. Every day brings new challenges and gives me another reason to smile.

I hope you enjoy reading and if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch. I would love to hear from you.

Nicola x