Thursday, 4 January 2018

Twenty Seventeen

As I sit here watching you dancing away with your Mama to ‘If You’re happy and you know it’ I still cant quite believe you're real. What seems even more amazing is that you are 19 months old, and that your first full calendar year on this planet is over. I mean they say time speeds up when you have a baby but this is next level. I don't quite know where 2017 went but here we are, it's twenty eighteen all of a sudden. As our blog is primarily a source for us to record our memories, here is a brief recap of what 2017 looked like.

A little month of firsts. On New Years Day we discovered Oskar's first tooth had popped through! Fast forward 12 months and he is now the proud owner of 16 pearly whites. He also had another first in the form of his cousin Arla's first birthday party. With only four months in age difference between the two of them they are incredibly close and absolutely adore each other. They say cousins are your first friends and it's definitely true for them, so fingers crossed they always stay that way. 


Celebrating Valentines Day as Mothers and not just a couple was always going to be a different kind of experience but it turned out to be all kinds of wonderful. We went back to the place Sarah and I had gone to on our very first date, 13 years ago. It is now a small, independent vegan cafĂ© serving the most amazing coffees and cakes, so we took our little 8 month old son and went for a Valentines lunch date. It was incredible to look back and think about how far we have come after all of these years. 

Our first family holiday! We visited Bluestone National Park in Pembrokeshire, Wales. We have enjoyed many beautiful holidays in Wales, and it was a really beautiful week of relaxation, exploration and adventure. We took Oskar swimming every day, we walked through forests, we ate amazing food, and left promising to return again soon. We loved it so much we have booked to visit again this year. 

Later in the month was our first Mothers Day. I will never forget how warm and sunny it was on that day, it really felt like a warm spring day. We had the morning together, the afternoon with Sarah's Mum and family and the evening with mine. March also bought a rare baby free evening when we went to see the wonderful Cirque Du Soleil.


April was my first birthday as a Mum - my last one being my 30th, when I was 28 weeks pregnant! We visited a local park and gardens, and had a beautiful day enjoying the sunshine then going for lunch.

April also bought Oskar’s first Easter! Although we didn’t want to give him chocolate yet, he did get some wooden Grimms balls which he still loves playing with now - and they came in an egg box! It also gave us the excuse to put him in this rather awesome Tshirt.


May was the last ‘month’ milestone for our little one before became a year old. Although we loved the tiny baby stage, we are loving our chatty, clever, funny, walking toddler even more! 
We also made use of the wonderfully sunny days we had by doing one of our favourite things - exploring lots of woods, forests and parks! 


June was a lovely but bittersweet month - our baby boy turned one! We were quite emotional at leaving the ‘baby’ stage - something that’s often forgotten when having a baby is just how short the ‘baby’ stage is! We had a rainbow themed party for our rainbow boy - there was rainbow cake, wooden rainbows for presents, rainbow decorations, rainbow outfits, even rainbow food! The sun shone, our family all spent the day with us, and in general it was just a wonderful, beautiful day - a true celebration. 


July gave us three of our best days ever. And like many of our best days ever, they were in Brighton! 
Having had our wedding day in 2013, months before same sex marriage was legalised in the UK, we were never sure whether we would convert to marriage or not - to us we already were married, and had already had our big, traditional wedding day. But we decided now we had a child, it would be a lovely way to reaffirm our love, and also meant we would have a special day in one of our favourite places in the world,  as well as our original wedding day in our home town. So we had breakfast in bed, then went down to the town hall to make it official! We then spent the day in the gorgeous sunshine on the beach, and went for dinner at the vegetarian restaurant we visited the night we got engaged. We also stayed in the hotel we got engaged at, so it all felt very special! The whole trip was full of our favourite things, and having our son there made it even more magical. It made us realise that despite being mothers now, we are very much still wives, and more in love than ever. 

July bought another sunny trip away in the form of our first visit to the Lake District. What a beautiful place! Having a baby/toddler meant our trips overseas have been temporarily put on hold, but this came as a blessing in disguise as it’s meant we have explored so much of this beautiful country we live in.


August bought us our 4th ever baby free date! We have only ever left Oskar for a couple of hours with grandparents, but this was the first time that we felt truly comfortable going out without him. We went to Zizzi for amazing vegan food, then sat by the waters edge and had cocktails. It was so lovely to spend a couple of hours being wives not mothers, and definitely left us feeling refreshed. 


September 25th marked 13 years since we became a couple, so we decided to celebrate with a trip to another place in the UK we had never visited before, Northumberland. As it was a long drive we split the journey by stopping for a night in Sheffield and meeting friends for dinner on the way there, and stopping in Leeds (where we spent the first few years of our relationship) for a trip down memory lane on the way back! We completely fell in love with Northumberland - with the beautiful secluded beaches and serene forests. We definitely hope to return this year, as the holiday provided us with so much peace and happiness. 


 October meant Sarah’s 33rd birthday, and our favourite season, autumn! We definitely embraced the spirit of autumn by going on as many leaf walks as possible, many uses of our National Trust memberships, and several pumpkin patch trips due to Oskar developing a fascination with them! As the day of our embryo transfer in 2015 was in October, we always go back to the same patch of leaves by our house that we took a walk through on that day, and take a picture of our boy. It reminds us how lucky we are.


November signalled the start of the festive season, and we really got into this year! This started with Oskar’s 1st theatre trip to see the adaptation of Emma Dodd’s ‘Me’,which fuelled Oskar’s love of penguins! (Pumpkins were so last month.)
We also visited The Magic Lantern festival, having not got around to it last year, it was conveniently nearer our house this year. We met a group of family there and had a lovely evening enjoying the lights (and hot chocolates!)


As we mentioned in our last post, we’ve never really been huge lovers of Christmas, finding it a lot of commercialism and expectation over one day. However last year and even more so this year, we really embraced the spirit of the whole season. We went on lots more Christmas days out, to our local Sea Life Centre (more penguins for Oskar), our local Christmas market, light switch ons, and Luxmuralis - a light show projected on to the side of Lichfield Cathedral. We also had another baby free date (we managed three this year!) and had a lovely champagne lunch together! We almost had a white Christmas (twice!) but definitely had our best Christmas ever. The presents were few and thoughtful, and the times together and with family have made us some beautiful memories.

We finished the year with one more festive day out, to another light trail at the Botanical Gardens (fairy lights and trees - we all loved it!) and went for a delicious brunch together just before New Years, as we were both lucky in the time we had off from work this year. 

Finally, as Oskar is now a confident walker and no longer crawls (or scoots) it was definitely time to buy him his first shoes. We visited a local independent store who sell barefoot friendly (and vegan) shoes. We love this new stage of him walking, as it means days out where he couldn’t go down on the floor to crawl around now mean he can have an explore around for himself! 


2017 was a wonderful year for us, and writing this post and looking back has been such a good reminder of that! It has been a calm, peaceful happy year where we really settled into motherhood, and took pleasure in enjoying our favourite things as often as possible. This year? Well we want to retain as much of that peace as possible, but we also have several plans that will bring changes to our lives. However, with our family, friends, each other, and a few adventures thrown in for good measure, we can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store. Happy New Year!

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  1. Happy new year, what a lovely year in review. I adore autumn and its my favourite season #ShareYourYear

    1. Thank you Sherry! We love autumn too, so beautiful and cosy!

  2. Happy new year from me too!! 2017 was really an amazing year with lots of "first time" experiences!
    becoming a mum really changes your life a 100% and I really love it. For sure sometimes it is very hard but it is really worth it! I remember this year for ever. I think this is what it is being a parent. The first car ride, the first time strolling around, the first time out without the baby. Uhhh this was strange but I guess you know what I'm talking about. Also when we did start to bottle feed this was a horrible time. Especially because my baby had some allergic reactions and was feeling really bad - so we were also in a hustle to find a solution. The hyperallergenic formula from saved our insanity.
    I'll also never forget our first Christmas young family, it was so special.
    2017 was really amazing and I'm so looking forward to 2018 and I know it is going to be exciting as hell as well :D

  3. Girls what a beautiful summary of your year. Thank you for allowing us to follow your adventures and letting us in to your positive outlook on life. The 3 of you are the most lovely family xxx

    1. What a lovely comment, thank you Nicole, that's so kind of you!

  4. You did so much! Loved the rainbow theme party, and your gorgeous rainbow hot air balloon carrier too! First shoes are super exciting too! Thanks for linking up with #ShareYourYear!


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