Thursday, 19 December 2019

The House Drama.

Hey everyone, Happy Thursday! Sorry for the late post but yesterday was hectic. For a few weeks though, I've been promising to talk about the house drama that went down over my birthday and caused quite a lot of stress and arguments within our family and with Jordan's parents. Finally, I'm going to tell you all about it.

It started off on November 8th. Vala was at school, Jordan and I were out in the car running errands and Flynn was fast asleep in the backseat. We were sitting in a car park ready to leave for home when Jordan's mum called. She had a bombshell to drop on us. The house behind theirs had come up for sale and was stupidly underpriced. She was ringing to tell us that her and Jordan's step-dad had made an offer on the house for us! At first we were livid because they hadn't even consulted us on this life changing decision but then we saw the house and our anger dissipated. The house was perfect! Everything we could want in a house was in this house and whilst we were still a little miffed they'd gone and done this without even talking to us first, we were very grateful that they had made an offer. The next week was torture waiting to hearing back. We found on the 16th that their offer had been rejected and that the seller had gone with someone else. It was pretty devastating. However, on the same day as the rejection, Jordan's parents had seen another house to make an offer on. This one was not perfect; far from. It was so far from school, well outside the catchment area and it needed a lot of work doing to it. Jordan went with them to view the house on the 17th but I didn't because I already said no to it. Jordan agreed with me we asked that his parents don't make an offer on the house. This pissed them off. We got a bit of abuse from them saying "beggars can't be choosers" and "you'll never get a house without our help." It was infuriating! We didn't ask for them to help at all, they just dropped it on us 9 days earlier. I thought if we started looking at houses ourselves and presented ones we liked to them, they'd get over us rejecting the second house. But we were in for a shock and a whirlwind of s**t.

Another house went up for sale on the exact same street as the first house and was almost identical in every way. It just needed quite a bit of work doing to it but it was up at the same price as the first house. I told Jordan's mum about the house and she dismissed it. I was confused but two days later we learned why. Despite us rejecting the second house, Jordan's step-dad went and made an offer anyway. Not only did he make an offer but his offer was immediately accepted! He saw it as an investment opportunity. He was going to fix it up and flip it for profit. This meant the money they were going to use to help us get a house was gone. When Jordan's mum learned of what her husband had done, they got into a huge fight and in the end, he pulled out of the sale on the house. The estate agent was angry with him pulling out and that only made Jordan's step-dad angrier. He didn't speak to Jordan's mum for two whole weeks! During this time, Jordan and I didn't know what was going on. Jordan's mum kept telling us we HAD to get out of our current place and that because of their age they won't be able to help us with a mortgage for much longer. So we kept looking for houses and sending links to houses we liked to her but her husband was no longer interested in helping. His offer to help us had been withdrawn. So exactly one month after they dropped the bombshell on us that they were about to buy us a house without even talking to us, they did a 180 and we were left standing here with our hopes and stress levels up with a door slammed in our faces. It had been drilled into us that we will never be able to buy a place without their help and now their help is gone. It has been really hard to deal with.

I'd like to make it clear that we never asked for them to buy us a house. At the start of the year we had, had a conversation with them (bought up by them) about them working with us to buy a house but that deal was them helping us by going in for a joint mortgage with Jordan not them buying the house for us. I'm a stay-at-home mum so we all agreed the best chance of us getting a decent mortgage was for Jordan to get a better paying job (which he is still trying to do) and for them to go in on the mortgage with him. So, to help, I started putting money aside for a deposit. Jordan and I hadn't been looking at houses or even talking about them because we figured it'd be a couple more years before we were in the position to and then suddenly, out of nowhere, his parents just went and did everything without us. Of course we want a forever home for our family so we didn't want to seem ungrateful or fight them on their help; we just wanted a say on where we would end up living. It was only the second house we'd seen (technically the first house we'd been given a say on) and because we said "no, it's not right for our family", all hell broke loose. Jordan's parents were fighting amongst themselves and Jordan and I had multiple massive fights too. Jordan was taking his parents side of "beggars can't be choosers" and felt we should've just accepted the house because they were the ones buying it but I was doing what I felt was best for the kids. Vala might have had to change school because of the location of the house. Flynn definitely wouldn't have gotten into the school. I didn't want to uproot Vala and take her away from her friends so I said no. We fought about it because he was convinced we could make it work and argued that there was no guarantee that Vala would have to move. It was a risk I didn't want to take. After three or four massive fights, one of which that nearly split us up (because I felt he didn't have the best interests of our family at heart) he finally started seeing things my way. He looked into school catchments and realised I'd been right to be cautious. He agreed I made the right decision by saying no and that he knew the house wasn't right for us; he just didn't want to upset his parents.

The whole ordeal only lasted a month but it drove such a wedge not only between us and Jordan's parents but between his parents and between us as well. Of course we're devastated that they're now not going to help us at all with buying a place but we're hoping with time, we'll be able to get them back on board with our original agreement of them doing a joint mortgage with Jordan (essentially as guarantors). So that's the whole house drama in as much of a nutshell as I can put it. We've stopped looking at houses and finally Jordan's mum has stopped telling us that we HAVE to move. Things appear to have gone back to how they were before Nov 8th but our relationships are still healing. The ordeal may have bought Jordan and I to breaking point but it has also bought us closer together. We always come out stronger in the end. We're just ready for this year to be over with so we could finally put this whole drama behind us for good.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Monday, 16 December 2019

My Diagnosis.

Happy Monday everyone! It's a chilly one today so I hope you're all keeping warm. I mentioned the other day that I had to have my annual blood test to check for type 2 diabetes (due to have gestational diabetes with Flynn) and that the doctor requested an appointment to discuss my results. I was worried that meant my results came back positive. Well, I had my appointment on Friday and....

...I DON'T have type 2 diabetes! According to my results, my haemoglobin was 34 mmol/mol and anything under 42 mmol/mol is considered to be non-diabetic. So I was well under which was a huge relief. But why did the doctor request to see me if the results were negative? Well, that is because they also did a liver function test on my bloods, which wasn't part of the screening last year and as it turns out, my liver isn't doing ok. Whilst I don't understand all the number mumbo jumbo, my results read...

AST serum level 45 u/L [0.0 -30.0]
Above high reference limit
Serum alanine aminotransferase level 85 u/L [0/0-35.0]
Above high reference limit

So again, I don't understand exactly what that means but I don't have to be a doctor to know that those numbers are a lot higher than they should be. The doctor (and I) suspects the cause is by too much fat in and around my liver, which is a very fair assumption given my weight. However, procedure dictates that we do more tests to rule out any other possibilities. So, on Christmas Eve I am having a second round of blood tests. This time they'll be testing for liver disease and Hepatitis. The thought of being tested for those did scare me at first but I know both are unlikely. My bloods were clear of Hepatitis when I was tested during my pregnancy with both kids and my blood has not come into contact with anyone else's blood since Flynn was born so it's extremely unlikely that I'll have Hepatitis. I obviously can't say much on the liver disease but again, the doctor says it's unlikely. I am extremely overweight and the likely cause is NAFLD (Non-Alcohol Fatty Liver Disease) also known as Fatty Liver. Along with my blood test, I also have to have a scan of my liver to check the condition of it; how much fat is in my liver and is there any scarring? I don't have a date for the ultrasound yet but I'm going to assume either after christmas or in the new year.

Either way, the solution to my liver issue is pretty much just lifestyle change. I need to be more active and eat a more healthy diet and with time, my liver will start to repair itself. Livers a great like that aren't they. Everything I've read has said losing roughly 10% of your body weight can be enough for your liver to recover and that's my first goal for the new year. I've been banging on for multiple years now about how badly I want to lose weight but I always give up and fall back into old habits. Well, now I actually have a serious reason to lose the weight. If I don't, my liver will only get worse and my chances of developing type 2 diabetes greatly increases. So losing 10% of my body weight is my first weight loss goal. Surprisingly, that's actually less than what my first weight loss goal was, the last time I tried to diet. It is totally doable and I'm more determined than ever to lose this damn weight. I've started making plans and hope to start a new diet and lifestyle change in the new year. I want to start now and to extent, I have started making some changes, but I want to wait for the rest of the test results and to see what the doctor says before I commit to any major changes.

I'm excited to make this change, I just wish I was making it under less serious circumstances.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Sunday, 15 December 2019

Friday, 13 December 2019

Vala's 6th Birthday

Happy Friday everyone! Hope the week has treated everyone well. I'm getting this post out before a doctor's appointment today that is more than likely going to bring bad news so look out for what that's all about probably on Monday. Until then, despite it being closer to Flynn's birthday now, I'm going to talk about Vala's 6th birthday.

Unlike my birthday, which was overshadowed by family/house drama (which I AM going to write a post about I promise!) Vala's birthday was a big success. We celebrated her party the day before her actual birthday with her and her four closest friends all getting pampered and glitterfied at a local beauty salon. Vala has become a teeny bit obsessed with having her nails painted and her hair done. Shame I don't know how to do anymore than a basic ponytail. So instead of a typical six year olds party where we go to another soft play centre or wherever, we decided she could go somewhere where she and her friends could be pampered. We ended up at a place called Beauty Temple and the staff there were so lovely and accommodating to Vala and her friends. The girls had their hair braided and glittered, their nails painted and their faces glitterfied. They all looked so beautiful and sparkled like crazy. One of Vala's friends had gold glitter put in her hair and as she walked, glitter trickled off her and she left a trail of sparkles behind her. The whole party lasted a total of 45 minutes though which is much shorted than a normal party. I also wasn't allowed to bring any food in with me but the girls got complimentary cupcakes and mocktails during their treatments. After the pampering was done, I took a few of the girls around the corner to KFC for a late lunch. It wasn't the most special of places to take a group of girls that we're all sparkled up but they still enjoyed themselves anyway. In total, the party lasted a little over an hour and a half which wasn't too bad. The girls loved their make overs so much that none of them wanted to take their glitter off. Like Vala, all the girls slept in their braids and glitter overnight.

That lead us to Vala's actual birthday. She woke up with her braid still mostly in tact but a little messy and half her face glitter missing. Her bed was super sparkly though. We did have a minor upset in the morning however as Vala snuck out of her bedroom while daddy, Flynn and myself were still sleeping and she slightly opened all her presents so she could see what was inside. I was not happy at all. I'd waited months to see her reaction to these presents and she went and opened them without us. She was apologetic but it makes me worry about what she'll do Christmas morning. We managed to get that negative moment behind us though and I surprised Vala with a trip to the cinema where we watched Frozen 2. She absolutely loved it! I did as well. Word of warning, if you're an emotional sap like I am, take tissues with you if you're going to see it. The cinema was packed but we still managed to end up with some of the best seats in the place. We had a great time. We had dinner at home as Vala wanted her favourite dinner.... pasta with (pasta) sauce. She hates meat with her pasta so we literally just cook some pasta and coat it with Dolmio. It's not the greatest meal ever but it's her favourite and it's what she wanted. Overall, the day went really well. Vala loved her presents and her Frozen surprise. She had a great weekend and it made us so happy to see her happy.

Now with mine and Vala's birthdays out the way, we've got Flynn's to focus on in a week. So many birthdays, so little time.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Wednesday, 11 December 2019

4 Year Anniversary Drama

Happy Hump Day evening. Hope the week is treating you all well. Mine was supposed to start off on a high but instead started off very badly.

Monday wad mine and Jordan's 4 year anniversary, a huge milestone for me! I've never had a relationship, not even my marriage, make it to four years. Somewhere between three and four years, my relationships have always fallen apart, so the fact we made it to four years, despite how much crap we've gone through in the last year, says a lot about our relationship and what Jordan means to me. He was working early on Monday so was gone before I even woke up but all weekend he had teased me that he had a surprise planned for me and that it'd be waiting for me when I woke up. I didn't have much time in the morning though as I had to do the school run and go shopping but I had a quick look around before leaving the house. I couldn't find anything. So while I was at the supermarket, I messaged him and asked for a hint as to what I was looking for. Two minutes before I arrived home, he text back... there was no surprise waiting for me. The "thing" he'd been planning and teasing me about never actually got done so he had nothing for me for our anniversary. I was crushed and sat at home with a tantruming Flynn, holding Jordan's anniversary present in my lap.

Turns out his surprise was going to be a scavenger hunt that eventually lead me to a video of him pouring his heart out, telling me all the reasons he loved me and how much I meant to him. Jordan is notoriously bad at communicating his feelings so that video would've been so special. I don't know what hurt more, the lack of an anniversary surprise or knowing what I would've been getting and that I'd never get to see it. I went from sad angry. I'd bought Jordan a thoughtful gift back in June and had planned well in advance for our anniversary. He didn't plan anything until a few days before and then didn't actually carry out his plan. I felt like the anniversary only meant something to me. Some people thought I was overreacting by being so angry/upset but the day was important to me. I didn't even get a card. Jordan came home from work, did the kids dinner and then at 9:30pm we ate take out separately. I was still so angry and hurt that for the first time ever, I made him sleep out on the sofa. I've never made a partner sleep on the sofa so it showed how upset I actually was.

He was gone before I woke the next day, another early shift but he felt so guilty that he ended up buying me two tickets to see Postmodern Jukebox in September. I had been planning on buying us tickets when I got paid so he beat me to it. Of course I accepted the gift but told him it didn't make things better. Buying me something I was going to buy myself out of guilt, wasn't going to fix how upsetting our anniversary was. Things are still a bit bleh but we're hoping to get at for a belated anniversary dinner at some point when we get a babysitter for the kids. Here's hoping he doesn't "forget" or anniversary next year haha.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Monday, 9 December 2019

My 29th Birthday

Howdy hey! Happy Monday everyone! Thought I'd start today by travelling back to last month and talking about what I did for my 29th birthday. Today is actually mine and Jordan's 4 year anniversary but as the day has only just begun and we've not done anything yet, I'll save that for another post.

So yeah, my birthday... wish I could say it was enjoyable but it was overshadowed by house drama, which again, I'll cover in another post. It was an extremely stressful week but I did still have some good moments. Jordan and the kids got me some lovely presents (a necklace and a Friends book). Vala was at school but that didn't stop us going out for a bit. I went and got my hair cut and eyebrows waxed. I'd planned on getting my nails done too but ran outta time before school pick up. We then went out for hot chocolates and toasties after school pick up and in the evening, Jordan cooked my favourite dinner; Butter Chicken!

The next night, we left the kids for a sleepover with Jordan's parents, got bad news on the house front, and went out for dinner and drinks with my best friend Adam and his girlfriend Emily. Dinner was incredible! I had a bratwurst in a brioche hot dog bun covered in pulled pork and jack cheese. It was amazing! I'm salivating just thinking about it. We had cocktail after cocktail and the night was mostly alright. The house drama weighed over Jordan and I and whilst the plan was to get me drunk, instead I went home sober with a very drunk Jordan. I had wanted to get drunk but didn't mind that I didn't. Cocktails don't tend to get me that tipsy. I still drank a lot that night.

So yeah, that was pretty much my birthday. We had what fun we could have with the drama that was going on but all in all, it wasn't the worst birthday I've ever had.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Friday, 6 December 2019

I went afk again.

Hello everyone! Happy Friday! I am so sorry but I did it again...I went afk for a while. A lot has happened since I last blogged but there has also been A LOT of drama as well which has really triggered my mood into a downward spiral. I won't talk about everything in great length in the post, I'll elaborate in other posts but to summarize...

... I had a birthday, I'm now 25 and 48 months! Aka 29 years old! Vala also had a birthday and is now a big 6 year old. We had a great party and magical birthday for her. We have had major house drama! Jordan's in-laws didn't just offer to help us buy a place, they literally gave us no choice and then poop hit the fan when we tried to have an opinion on the matter. There's a lot to that story. I had my annual blood test ti check for type 2 diabetes (which I have to have done due to having gestational diabetes with Flynn). Unfortunately, the gp has arranged an appointment with me to discuss my results; something they only usually do if the results are positive. My appointment is next week but I'm expecting life changing bad news. The drama and potential bad news has broken me and I've fallen back into a depressed state; we're hoping to get me into CBT in the future. Vala also had her christmas play and we attended the blessings of two of my beautiful nieces.

So, lots of good and bad things have happened in less than a month. It's been extremely overwhelming. I'll break diem most of these into separate posts as there's a lot to unpack here. Still to come, we've got mine and Jordan's anniversary,  Flynn's 2nd birthday, Christmas and of course my traditional New Years Resolution post. I think 2019 is going to end on a rocky, low point but 2020 has the potential for some massive changes for myself and my family. All we can do is wait and see.

Until next time,
Alli x

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Friday, 8 November 2019

A sickly 2019 Halloween

Happy Friday everyone!

Oddly, I thought I'd write about Halloween today seeing as how I was blogging at all last month. It won't be a very long post because in a nutshell, we didn't really get to celebrate Halloween.

The final week of October saw our hit with a really bad stomach virus. For most of us, it was thankfully just a 24 hour bug but unfortunately for Flynn, it ended up being a week long ordeal. It started with Flynn waking up vomiting in his cot first thing on Saturday 26th and then again in the afternoon all over me, the sofa and the carpet. He was then fine again come Sunday afternoon so we took the kids into town to enjoy the Spooktacular event being held in the market square. Vala was stroppy the whole time because a giant plastic pumpkin head that you take photos in was too scary for her. Flynn loved it though as you can see from this photo. With Vala stropping, we decided to go get some dinner and ended up having a really nice meal at TGI Friday's as a family. That was until 1:30am Monday morning when Flynn threw up in his cot again. We stayed up til 3am with him before it was safe for us all to sleep again. He wasn't sick from Monday afternoon onward so we thought he was recovering.

Then Wednesday morning came and we awoke to more vomit. Only this time it had come from Vala and not Flynn. She had thrown up in her bed in the middle of the night and then again on the living room floor in the morning. Wednesday is also the day my stomach started to hurt. Come evening, Vala was feeling absolutely fine again but it was my turn to start being sick. Thankfully, I only threw up once and managed to get it in the sick bucket and not in my bed or all over the floor. I was back to feeling 85% come Thursday morning but then it was Jordan's turn and he was sent home from work after being sick in the toilet. Then Flynn threw up again in the evening. So that was both Jordan and Flynn sick on Halloween but both feeling/acting fine come Friday. Jordan even went back to work on Friday and Flynn's appetite had returned. Until Saturday when Flynn threw up AGAIN literally 10 minutes before we were due to take Vala to swimming lessons. Jordan took her and I stayed home with our sickly boy again, just as I had all week. Seriously, in the whole week, I'd only left the house once! Since it'd had been a whole week of Flynn being on/off sick, we took him to a walk in doctor and after a 2 hour wait, was told that Flynn is fine and it's just taking longer for him to get over the sickness because the rest of us being sick was probably reinfecting him. It's now six days later and I am very happy to report that no one has been sick since. Even Flynn is back to his healthy self. I've finally managed to get the vomit smell out of our house as well.

So that was how we spent our Halloween. The kids did get dressed up on Thursday before Jordan came home from work and we did get out for a little in the morning but we didn't get to go up to Jordan's parents and cut up pumpkins like we do every year and the kids didn't get their "bucket of treats" from their Nonna. They'll get them eventually but sadly Halloween 2019 was a very sickly one for all of us.

Until next time,
Alli xo
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Thursday, 7 November 2019

I'm back! (for now)

Good morning ladies and gentlemen!

I'm back! Ok, I'm back for now because honestly, even I don't know how long I'll keep this up for before I take another extended break; I do apologise for being gone so long though.

As I explained in a post back in September; "Needing A Break", things weren't going the way I was wanting them to and I needed to step back and re-evaluate my life; especially my writing. Well, I took the step back and what did I work out? Not a whole lot if I'm being totally honest here. I identified the cause behind my passion for writing taking a nose dive but I still cannot figure out how to get that spark back. This is why it's taken me so long to come back to blogging; I've not wanted to write at all.

To try and combat my negative feelings for writing, I decided to force myself to participate in this years NaNoWriMo. So far, it's not going well. I reached the daily word count on days one and two but haven't written since. I'm now four days behind schedule and if I want to catch up, I'll have to write at least 8,298 words today just to be back on the NaNo schedule. I was struggling to write the minimum 1,667 words a day so the thought of writing over 8,000 words in one day seems impossible right now. I'm only making it harder on myself though by not even attempting and letting the days add up. But enough about NaNoWriMo and my writing, I can cover all that in another post.

We've got a few things to look forward to this month. Starting off with my 29th birthday next week! That's right, only six days left of being 28. After my birthday comes Vala's 6th birthday and we've got a very special and girlie birthday planned for her, more on that to come. Also, we did go ahead and buy a camera to start a vlog channel with! We're in the process of getting everything set up but when that's live (hopefully in the next week or so) I'll be linking our YouTube channel here. I'd wanted it up and running over the Halloween half term but unfortunately we learned that the SD card reader in my computer doesn't actually work so that has set us back a bit. Hopefully it'll be up by the end of the month but we've still got a lot to get sorted before it goes live.

Besides all that, myself and the family have been mostly fine. We did have a stomach virus go through our family last week so we were all quite sick but we've bounced back now. Vala is doing well at school, Flynn is rapidly changing every single day (and not always in good ways) and Jordan is still in the same job, wishing he was in a new job. I'm still massively overweight and angry at myself about it. Can't stick to anything at the moment and trying to kick myself in the backside to make a change. Some things don't change, do they?

Anyway, it's good to be back and blogging again, even if it was a struggle to sit down today and write this. Hopefully I won't need to take another break for a while but we'll see how things go.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Sunday, 29 September 2019

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Friday, 13 September 2019

What happened to my novel?

Hey everyone! Happy Friday the thirteenth! Ooh spooky! ... Anyway, last post I very briefly mentioned that I've not really been working on my novel and that I wanted to address the reason for that. Well, this is probably the main reason why...

...After I finished my first draft, I sent three chapter chunks to a small group of people, whom I trust, to be my alpha readers and to give me constructive feedback. I didn't send my work to anyone who didn't offer to read through it, I want to make it clear that I didn't force my work onto anyone. Anyway, I said I wouldn't start work on the second draft until I'd received everyone's feedback. A couple months went passed and no one had written back to me. I chased it up saying I was hoping to start work on the second draft soon and some said they were almost done and enjoying what they'd read so far. So I continued to wait. It's now been over six months since I sent five people my work and not one of them has given me any feedback. I didn't want to chase it up again because one, I really hate confrontation and two, because honestly I didn't believe any of them had actually read my work. This thought has really caused me to lose all motivation to keep writing. If five of my trusted friends cant even read three chapters of my work or haven't wanted to, why would anyone read all twelve chapters? (Fourteen if we include epilogue and prologue.)

I don't want to say I've given up on my novel but it's so hard to push myself to continue it when I feel like no one cares anymore. I set out to write this for Vala and then Flynn as well but now I feel that if no one else has any interest in reading it, why bother finishing it at all? I could just read the first draft to my kids and they'd be happy with it. They wouldn't know or understand it was an unfinished manuscript. I need a reason to keep writing it but right now, I can't find one. I've have several people, who weren't alpha readers, say they want to buy my book when I've finished it, to show their support but I don't want people to just buy my book because they know the person who wrote it; I want them to buy it because they have a genuine interest in reading it. Honestly, I don't think any of them would actually buy it anyway. I think it's probably more likely that they said it to motivate me but now even that isn't a motivator.

My readers not getting back to me has really knocked me back. I know everyone has lives and we're all busy but it's been over six months and the chapters weren't that long. I'd rather they just be honest and say they've not read it rather than keep me waiting in the dark for feedback that'll never come. This is why my novel hasn't progressed and why my enthusiasm to write has diminished. I hope to one day work on it again but I honestly don't know if/when that day will ever come. Now you know why.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Needing a break

Hello everyone. Happy hump day. Sorry I've not been posting lately, I know I've been really slack but I'm here today to explain why.

I think I need a break. Not just from blogging but from a few things in life at the moment. Things haven't been going the way I want them to and I want to take a step back and re-evaluate everything. I set myself a Monday, Wednesday, Friday blog schedule with a single photo post on Sunday for Silent Sunday. I did this because I figured if I didn't have a schedule, I wouldn't get into a habit of blogging and I'd ultimately give up and let the dust gather on the Gamer Mum Chronicles. I didn't want that. So I made myself the schedule and forced myself to keep to it, even when I didn't have anything to really blog about. I wouldn't say that burnt me out but the last few posts I've missed have been because I didn't feel like I had anything blog worthy to write about and I couldn't be bothered forcing something random out. Heck, to be honest, I couldn't even be bothered writing this post today but I was thinking about my novel last night and how I've not worked on that either and I figured I needed to address why my writing in general has been declining.

I'll explain my novel in another post so as not to draw this one out any longer but I just wanted to touch base and explain why my blog posts have been few and far between this month. I do want to keep blogging and I do want to keep my schedule but if I miss a day, I wanted you to understand that's it's probably because nothing major has happen and I couldn't bring myself to write another boring post about nothing. I hope you can understand.

Until next time,
Alli xo


Sunday, 8 September 2019

Tuesday, 3 September 2019

Year One!

It's not Oneday but it is Tuesday haha! Yes, I know it's not a normal blog day and that I missed one yesterday but that is because I couldn't blog about this subject yesterday as it didn't happen until today. The subject I'm on about is Vala returning to school and starting Year One!

I wanted to wait until she had returned from school today so I could tell you all about how her first day went but so far, all I've managed to get out of her is that she had a great day, she loves school and that her teacher read them THREE stories today. I mean, that's more information than I used to get out of her when she was in reception I guess. She did look so grown up today though, standing in front of our garden fence, posing for her "first day of year one" photo (pictured). She looked even more grown up when we got to her classroom though. This year, they have tables to sit and learn at as well as mat, whereas in reception they would have lessons on the mat and then play at activity tables. The teachers said that eventually they'll have allocated seats but for now they can sit anywhere. I reckon this is so they can work out which kids are gonna talk, mess about together and not concentrate and sit them accordingly. For today though, Vala sat with her best friend Lacey and her other friend Lacey. Yes, she has two friends named Lacey in her class which doesn't get confusing at all haha. Seeing the girls sitting at the big tables, ready for class to start felt so surreal. They looked small at the tables but also so grown up.

This just in, Vala has piped up behind me as I type this; she says they also had PE today and that she did some writing and "learned about maths." She also said they had lunch and played on the top playground. So, getting a little more out of her it seems. I can't wait to see what she learns and picks up in the coming weeks. I fully expect we'll be getting spelling homework soon enough. I'm both excited for that and dreading it. Vala can turn a reading practice from lovely to painful in a matter of seconds when she gets frustrated over a single word. I can only imagine spelling will get a similar response out of her. Still, I look forward to see her spelling come along and improving over the course of the year.

She's very happy to be back and school and I think the rest of us are as well. She was getting a bit difficult in the last week with more tantrums than normal. Flynn's routine had also been majorly disrupted over the holidays and he was definitely ready for things to return to normal. He napped for four and a quarter hours today! I had to wake him for lunch. Will take a little bit for us all to get back into the swing of things but we're all really happy that the new school year has started. Welcome to year one Vala!

Until next time,
Alli xo
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Sunday, 1 September 2019

Saturday, 31 August 2019

Journaling - 1 Year On.

Hello everyone! Just wanted to give you a little post today to make up for the lack of one the other week. I try and put out 4 posts a week which leaves me with an expected amount each month, I'm currently standing at one short of what I should've put out this month and as tomorrow is September, I wanted to rectify the situation.

So as some of you may know, I started journaling to help me deal with my postnatal depression. I write in my journal every single night before bed. This week I hit my 365th consecutive journal entry. That's right, I have been journaling for an entire year now. Crazy! I couldn't believe it and I'm the one who's been writing in it all this time. Hitting 1 year made me stop and reflect on the impact it's had on me. Well, for one, it's definitely become a habit and part of my bed time routine now. I didn't miss an entry even when drunk off my head or staying away from home in Manchester. A feat I'm quite proud of.

However the biggest and most notable thing about my journaling is that it did exactly what it was supposed to do; help me with my postnatal depression. I am definitely 100% out of that dark pit that was PND and now I'm just dealing with the aftermath of it; aka my weight issues. When I first started my journal, I didn't think it would help me recover at all but I was wrong. The more i wrote, the less depressed the posts got. The mood and tone of the posts steadily improved with each passing month. Now I never write about how much I hate myself and think I'm a terrible mother/wife(-to-be). I'm out of those dark woods and write about how I'm working on getting my life back. I write about my plans to return to uni and my struggles with losing weight and our plans for the future. I definitely feel that journaling helped me a lot more than I ever thought it would. The difference in my entries now compared to a year ago are night and day. Journaling was like a silent supporter or an unseen therapist. It's helped me a lot and I don't plan on giving it up any time soon.

I highly recommend journaling to anyone and everyone. It such a simple therapeutic activity that literally anyone can do. I'm so glad I gave it a go.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Friday, 30 August 2019

Pups and Confetti

Happy Friday everyone! We're almost at the end of the school holidays and I for one am both happy and sad about that fact. Happy because I'm definitely ready for Vala to be back at school and to get back into a routine again but sad because we have had a lot of fun these holidays and we won't be taking as many big adventures once school is back. But, with the end of the holidays mere days away, I made sure to plan a couple more activities for us all, including taking the kids to meet two pawsome pups.

Jordan was back at work sadly so it was just the kids and I heading into town to meet Chase and Marshall from the Paw Patrol! Vala has loved Paw Patrol for years but Flynn has very recently been showing a lot more interest in the show. This was his first time meeting suit characters and I wasn't sure how he'd react. I was worried the giant pups might scare him a little but thankfully, it was the complete opposite. He screamed and pulled away from me in order to get to the pups. He didn't want to wait his turn, he wanted to go now! We met Chase first and when it was our turn, Flynn ran over and stopped dead in front of him, looking up at him. The woman carer turned him around for a photo and Flynn backed up and sat himself down on Chase's foot. It was too cute! After Chase, we waited 30 minutes to meet Marshall and Flynn did the same thing, only this time he didn't hesitate. He ran right over to Marshall and perched himself on the pups foot. Almost like he knew that was what he was supposed to do. Both kids high fived the pups as we left and then went and participated in the Pup Pup Boogie until we moved onto to something else we've done before...

...The Confetti Room! It closes tomorrow and I wanted to try and get the kids in one last time so we sneakily managed to take one of the last walk in slots. I felt a little bad about it but I didn't know how many walk in slots they had left until afterwards. Besides, the kids had queued for over an hour to meet the Paw Patrol pups and they deserved to have a bit of fun. Flynn of course didn't hesitate the moment he saw the confetti and rolled around it. Vala made confetti angels and some random little girl proceeded to throw bucket loads of confetti all over me for the fun of it. After 15 minutes, our session was over and on Vala's request, we had Subway for lunch. Whilst there, she needed the toilet and when we got in there and she removed her jumpsuit to use the toilet, tonnes of confetti fell out all over the floor. It was almost as if she'd farted confetti it was hilarious. To make it even funnier, the hand dryer blew the confetti everywhere and we ended up leaving the toilet looking like a circus parade had just gone through it. It certainly brightened up the dull and kinda gross toilet.

After lunch we made our way home and Flynn fell asleep on the bus. He wasnt the only one tuckered out though. Once home all three of us had naps. It was a fun afternoon and seeing my kids so happy, made me happy. Going out shortly to a new park and then tomorrow we've got my friend coming to visit, so we've got a couple more things to look forward to before school goes back.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Monthly Challenge: August

Another month has reached it's end and with the end of this month, also comes the end of the school holidays (almost). I had set myself a challenge to accomplish these holidays and sadly, I didn't even get close. I had really hoped to get myself into a healthy routine in regards to sleep, diet and exercise but I am no better now than I was before the school break.

I thought with Vala away, I'd have plenty of time to reset my body clock and start going to bed at a decent time. I'd hoped to make a dent into becoming a morning person so I could start getting up naturally around 7am, having a healthy breakfast and actually maintaining a beauty routine (washing face, moisturising, putting on make-up etc). It didn't happen though. I also wanted to go swimming with Flynn twice a week while Vala was away but I didn't do that either. In my defence though, the second week Aunt Flow arrived so even if I had all the motivation in the world, I still wouldn't have gone swimming. The first week though, I had just wanted to relaxed and give my body some much needed rest. That's when I started my 100 Baby Challenge in the Sims 4.

So I wasn't getting up at 7am, I wasn't eating properly and I certainly didn't have a beauty routine to even maintain but what about my exercise? At first, I wasn't any better with that but then last week we were kept so busy that I was always on my feet, walking around. I was racking up the miles for my Race at your Pace 65 mile walking challenge. I wouldn't say it was a routine though. So all in all, I didn't do anything that I said I would do this month and I am disappointed in myself for that. I had hoped to better myself but I'm exactly the same as last month. I'll get it right eventually I guess, it's just a matter of when?

Until next time,
Alli xo

Monday, 26 August 2019

Baby Logan

Good evening all! Super late post this evening, which I am sorry about but I did nearly forget what day it was. I'm going to blame the 30°c heat we've had today. We spent all of today just trying to keep cool and I totally forgot it was Monday.

I'll keep this post short but on Saturday we took a trip to visit our friends Ian and Natalie and their 6 week old son Logan. Little Logan was so much cuter in person, the photos I've seen of him do not do him justice. Aside from my own kids, he is probably one of the cutest babies I've ever seen! He was so alert when we got there and just took the whole world in. He was so calm and content, only really grizzling when he got hungry. I got to enjoy quite a few lovely cuddles with him and during my first cuddle, he even fell asleep in my arms as I stroked his hand with my thumb. It was so precious. He is so precious. Honestly, I was surprised holding him didn't make me broody at all. I think it affirmed that I'm not yet ready for baby number three. I do want another but very clearly I don't want them yet.

It was really nice to catch up with Ian and Nat again and to have a meal with them. They appear to have settled into their new parenting roles quite well. Ian was so natural with Logan and Nat has mastered the multitasking aspect of parenting. They are still adjusting but from what we saw, they doing great and are wonderful parents. Only downside to our trip was we accidentally left our changing bag at theirs and as they live two hours away, we couldn't just go back and get it. We're gonna have to arrange another weekend when Jordan's not working and they're free to go visit again and get the bag. Totally worth it though for more Logan cuddles!

I'll try and get Wednesdays post out on time but....

...Until next time,
Alli xo
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Sunday, 25 August 2019

Saturday, 24 August 2019

100 Baby Challenge (Update)

Hey everyone, happy Saturday! Hope you're all in for fun and/or relaxing weekends! Just a teeny tiny short bonus post today to make up for one of the ones I missed last week. I thought I'd update you on the progress of last months 'Monthly Challenge'; the 100 Baby Challenge in the Sims 4.

Honestly, I did not think it would take this long to reach 100 babies considering I'm using cheats and my matriarch is only making babies with one man instead of 100 different men but I'm still not at 100 babies yet. I am currently standing at a total of 76! This week has been so busy that I've been too tried at night to actually play the Sims, so that has really slowed progress down. The other thing that has slowed progress down is the fact that I sometimes go and play with a different family. Usually one of my matriarch's grown up kids to be exact. I need a break from mass breeding Addison and so every so often, I'll choose one of her children to marry off, get a job and have family of their own. Addison and Cairo now have 10 grandchildren; 2 of which are aliens! I honestly do enjoy things more when I'm not rushing to pump babies out. If I didn't play any other families and I continued to play every night, I probably would have hit 100 babies a while ago but it is what it. Jordan is back at work next week so things will settle down in the lead up to school returning. I probably won't be as tired at nights and I reckon I'll get the last 24 babies out before school starts back. I look forward to actually reporting back when I've FINALLY completed this challenge. It's been pointless, but fun.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Friday, 23 August 2019

Beach Fun

Hey-ho, it's Friday! The weekend is tantalisingly close now. I hope the week has treated you all well. As the title tells you, yesterday we did end up going to the beach instead of the Ice-Cream farm as the weather was shaping up to be almost perfect.


By almost perfect, the weather was warm and mostly sunny but there was quite a bit of wind. Everything kept blowing over but ultimately, it didn't dampen our moods. Vala's already been to the beach once these holidays so she was just happy to go again, Flynn however, this was his first ever time at a beach. The look of amazement on his face and his shrieks of excitement as we reached the top of the hill, looking down on the beach, were too cute. We let him out the stroller as we reached the sand and literally, the first thing he did was lay down in it and roll around. He kept grabbing the sand and playing with it, laughing and smiling from ear to ear. He was totally in his element with the huge area to run around in and the sand to play, roll and dig in. We dug a hole and he climbed in it. We built sandcastles and he stomped on them. Smiling the whole time. He was so happy. I didn't think anything would make him happier until I took him to the water. He is water obsessed and even though the ocean was quite chilly, it didn't stop him throwing himself in. He splashed and kicked and sat in the sea. He was shivering but refused to get out. He stayed in the water for half an hour before we were finally able to coax him out with food. I spent the first 20 minutes in the water with him and Vala. Whilst he splashed, Vala and I collected shells to decorate sandcastles with. Eventually, Jordan and I switched places though and he spent the next 10 minutes trying to get Flynn to come get warm.


We came prepared this time, with snacks abound! After our paddle in the sea, we wrapped Flynn up in a blanket, cuddled up to me and enjoyed something to eat. After that we got back to building sandcastles and decorating them with the shells Vala and I collected. We found so many and even kept a couple of the prettiest ones. I'm thinking about maybe getting a small glass jar/bottle to put the smalls shells into for Vala to have a keepsake of our day. Honestly, I think collecting the shells with Vala was my favourite part of the whole day. It was so much fun. It was something so simple that we could both do but finding all the different types of shells and seeing the pretty colours and patterns on them just made us both happy. I even found a full size oyster shell! The biggest downside, for me, was my weight. I still had a great day but every time I tried to get more involved with something, my weight held me back. I loved looking for shells but struggled to bend down to pick them up. I found sitting on the sand uncomfortable in most positions so helping build the sandcastles ended up being more difficult for me than it should've been. I even struggled with digging the hole once it reached a certain depth. It was upsetting me because even though I wasn't thinking about my weight, my weight was a prominent issue that I couldn't ignore. I did cry about it once we got back to the car sadly. It's good though because struggling like I did just gives me more motivation to work harder at my diet.
A diet that I ignored completely yesterday. We were at the beach, of course we went and had fish n chips. Although, I had chicken nuggets and chips because I don't like fish. Flynn force fed Jordan more chips than he ate himself and Vala was only interested in having ice-cream so getting her to eat her dinner was a real struggle too. We got there in the end though.

My weight aside, I had a great time yesterday; we all did. The kids tuckered themselves right out and Flynn was asleep in the car within 10 minutes of setting off. I wish we didn't live 2 hours away from the beach because I'd love to be able to take the kids more often. Going once every summer isn't enough but a 4 hour round trip means a visit to the beach has to be an all-day thing rather than just an hour of two for some fun. We've already done quite a bit of travelling these holidays (Dropping off/Picking up Vala, visiting family in Manchester, the beach yesterday) and we've still got a bit to go. Tomorrow we're off to visit our friends who live 2 hours south of us. We're finally going to meet baby Logan and we can't wait! Look out for the post about how that trip goes, on Monday.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Vlogging

Hey everyone, I know today is my normal post day but I missed a whole week of posts last week, so I kinda want to try and make them up when I can. This will be a short post though because I want to talk about Vlogging.


I have been watching a few family vloggers lately and honestly, I have been considering starting a family vlog channel of my own. I discussed the idea with Jordan and he was all for it as well. We've got a channel name but that's as far as we've gotten so far. We'd need to get a lot of things sorted like channel art, channel description, maybe an intro and outro for our videos etc and we've not done any of that yet. That's mainly because we've been so busy these school holidays but that's also where I feel we've already failed. We have had so much on these holidays that we had plenty of content to film/make. I wanted to get the channel up and running before Vala returned from her trip away, so that we could record/vlog our trip to Manchester and to the confetti room and the beach etc. But we didn't get it done and didn't record much while doing all of those things. I think one of the reasons we didn't record much was because we don't have the right equipment for vlogging. We'd be using my phone and the film quality wouldn't be great. I don't have a tripod for my phone and the audio would be very poor and even too noisy in some places. Jordan and I have been weighing up the idea of vlogging for about a month now and have decided that IF we do go ahead with it, we want to do it properly; all or nothing so to speak. If we do it, we'll get a proper camera to vlog with. One with better sound and picture quality than our phones and definitely one with a tripod. We currently have our eyes set on two vlogger kits (pictured) that we've seen but it neither are cheap. I can get either of them on Littlewoods and pay for it with monthly instalments so it won't be as bad for us financially but at the same time, because it is so much money, monthly payments or not, we have to be sure that we'd get tonnes of use out of it and actually use it for the reason we bought it. For that reason, we're still in the undecided stage and weighing everything up. I'll keep you posted about whether or not we go ahead with our vlog channel and I'll post a link to it if and when we get it running.

As I said, short post today to make up for one of the absent posts last week. I really want to start a vlog channel but guess we'll wait and see.

Until next time,
Alli xo

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Confetti Madness.

Happy hump day everyone. Hope you're all doing well. hope the week is treating you well. We've had a productive and fun week so far, walked over 10 miles in two days and now we're off for yet another family adventure today. Full disclosure, I'm writing this post at 10pm Tuesday night and that is just because we are heading out early today. As to where we're going, that's undecided at the time of writing this. We're supposed to be going to the beach but we've had mixed weather reports. One says there's a 57% chance it's going to rain and another that says it isn't going to rain at all. So we're deciding in the morning. If we don't go to the beach, we'll be going to The Ice-Cream Farm in Chester instead. Either way, I should have a post out on Friday detailing the fun we had today.

Today's post however, is about the fun and eventful day we had on Monday. We had a slow start to the day but come 1:30pm, we were ankles deep in confetti. Jordan and I took the kids to the Confetti Room in town and we had so much fun. Flynn got so excited the moment he saw the room that he tried desperately to get in and he did not want to wait for our session. Once in there he squealed his little head off and literally rolled around in the confetti. Vala filled buckets with the confetti and had a blast tipping them all over Jordan, Flynn and myself. We were covered from head to toe. Flynn had them down his shirt and in his pants, Vala and I had them in our hair and Jordan had a hood full. We took so many photos in there and quite a few videos and genuinely had a great time. It's funny to think that something as simple as thousands of small pieces of tissue paper, blowing around a room thanks to 6 small fans, could provide so much joy and entertainment. The biggest down point is the fact each session is only 15 minutes long. The kids definitely could have stayed in that small room for well over and hour. Heck, I honestly could imagine them staying in there for a whole two hours if they'd eaten and empty their bladders before we got in there. Honestly, I didn't want to leave at the end of our session either. Seeing the kids have that much fun, makes me feel so happy. It was the second time that Vala and I had been in there but Jordan and Flynn's first. Not sure we'll get chance to get all four of us in there again before it closes for good in ten days but I would definitely like to get Flynn in there at least one more time. He loved it so much.

After the Confetti Room, something pretty big happened. Big and totally unplanned for. Next to the Confetti Room is a Claire's accessory store and there was a woman doing ear piercings at the entrance. Vala saw this and asked to have her ears pierced. I thought she was only asking because she saw another little girl getting hers done but it also isn't the first time she'd asked to have them done. Jordan, her dad on a video call and myself all had long talks with her to determine if she was 100% sure that she wanted to get it done. She said she was. I made her watch three other girls that were in the line before her and two of those three cried and screamed a little. I honestly thought that would be enough to put Vala off but when it was her turn, she sat in the chair with a nervous smile on her face. Rebecca, the woman doing the piercings, was absolutely wonderful with Vala. She made her laugh, totally relaxed her and made the whole experience fun and stress-free. I held Vala's hands and made funny faces at her as Rebecca and another employee pierced Vala's ears. I honestly thought she was going to scream and burst into tears but she barely even flinched and not a single tear was shed. Her eyes didn't even water; she was so brave! I was ecstatic seeing how well she did. I had the biggest smile on my face and praised her endlessly. She was beaming with pride and couldn't wait to see her new pretty pink sparkly earrings in her ears. She was given a lollipop and a cardboard tiara as well and basically, her day was made. She loves her earrings and loved showing them off to everyone she could. I thought seeing her with earrings in would be weird and something I'd have to get used to but seriously, they look so normal on her that I feel like she's had her ears pierced for a lot longer than just two days. Of course now I have the fun task of cleaning them multiple times a day but this is what she wanted. I thought about implementing my mums rule of no ear piercings until you're ten but honestly, I feel like Vala is already of the age where she knows what she wants and can make decisions about her own life. If she told me she wanted to start dancing or to stop swimming, we'd listen and let her do either of those things, so why should something like getting her ears pierced be any different? We made sure that she was 100% before we let her go through with it and at the end of the day, she's really happy with them and that makes me happy. They do really suit her too.

So that was our Monday. We did also go to my best friends new house for dinner that night. It was so relaxing and really just the perfect ending to an already great day. Yesterday we went for a long 7 mile family walk and had some lunch together and did a teeny bit of shopping and whilst we all came home sore, that was a fun day too. This week has been great and I know we're going to have a great day today and tomorrow Jordan has a job interview so hopefully there are more good things to come. This week has just been great and we're only half way through it. Here's to the rest of the week!

Until next time,
Alli xo

Monday, 19 August 2019

Manchester Trip.

Happy Monday everyone! Hope you're all doing well. Hope you had great weekend as well. We definitely had a great weekend and that's because we travelled out to visit my aunt and uncle who live in Manchester.

I've not seen my aunt, uncle and two cousins in over two years; I was 14 weeks pregnant with Flynn the last time I saw them, so a lot has changed in that time. Obviously, I'd had Flynn and they were yet to meet him but also, my cousin Stef has recently given birth to her first bubba. Little Edward, or Eddie as he is called, is 8 weeks now and an absolute chunk with a wild head of hair that literally wont stay down; it's incredible and so soft and fluffy. I got to enjoy some wonderful cuddles with him and he even fell asleep on me which came as a shock to my cousin as apparently he rarely falls asleep on anyone who isn't mum or dad. What can I say? I have a way with babies haha.

Aside from meeting little Eddie, we actually spent the night at my aunt and uncles. We arrived Saturday afternoon and got home yesterday evening. It was surreal for us because we realised it was the first we'd ever stayed over anywhere as a family. Jordan and I have crashed places before but never with the kids and not since Flynn was born. We were all packed into one bedroom with Jordan and I in a super comfy double bed, Vala on a blow up bed on the floor and Flynn in his new travel cot (bought specifically for this trip). It felt weird staying over but also really nice. We all felt very comfortable and very at home there but admittedly I was feeling a tad more self-conscious about my weight than normal; especially about my bingo wing arms. Despite my personal insecurities, I had a great time. The kids and Jordan had a great time too and my aunt and uncle apparently loved having us. They couldn't get over how much Vala had grown and changed since they last saw her and they absolutely fell in love with Flynn. He's a charmer and he definitely had them wrapped around his little fingers.

All in all, it was a very relaxing and enjoyable weekend staying with my relatives and we've promised not to let another 2 years go by between visits. I do hope we get to go back and visit soon but with everyone's chaotic schedules, I think it'll probably be Eddie's first birthday before we get over there again. Will  definitely be worth it though, to have more of the fun times we experienced this weekend.

Until next time,
Alli xo
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Sunday, 18 August 2019

Friday, 16 August 2019

Hospital Trip

Apparently it's Friday today! Honestly, I've been losing track of the days having everyone at home. Hard to believe Jordan's been off for a week already! Yesterday was supposed to be a nice day and we were going to take the kids to the beach and today's post was going to be on our trip but two things changed those plans.

Firstly, the weather; it was very wet and very miserable. However, the biggest reason (as if it raining all day wasn't enough of reason not to go to the beach) was that we'd spent Wednesday evening in the childrens A&E department with Flynn. I'll go into detail in a second, but basically the ordeal zapped Jordan and I of so much energy that yesterday we were both completely zonked and needed to recover.

So what happened to our little man that resulted in a trip to hospital? Honestly, we have no idea. Earlier in the day, around 2:30pm (ish), he'd slipped on a toy on the living room floor and bumped his head on the coffee table. The bump sounded bad but there was no mark, no bruise, no bleeding and not even a lump. He cried for about a minute and then got back up and happily played with Vala like nothing had happened. We dismissed the bump after that because it seemed like it was nothing. Fast forward to 4pm and Flynn was getting cranky because he hadn't napped. So we put him down for a nap and 40 minutes later, everything went south.

Flynn woke very suddenly and was screaming/crying at the top of his lungs. At first we assumed he had a bad dream and tried to comfort him. However, after 5 minutes he still hadn't calmed down and the crying had gotten worse. He was in full tantrum mode. He was throwing himself all over the place, arching his back, going stiff and fighting his way out of our arms. We laid him on our bed and he writhered around screaming, almost like he was in pain. He kept holding his breath (not inhaling) until he was red with shades of purple in the face and then he'd inhale sharply and start hyperventilating. It was scary. He kept trying to soothe himself by sucking his thumb and drifting off to sleep again but within 30 seconds, he'd start screaming again and rolling around with his body stiff. It looked like he was in a lot of pain but we couldn't see anything wrong. This went on for a total of 20 minutes before I noticed his eyes were trying to roll back in his head and I got Jordan to call 111. 20 minutes after the call (40 minutes of screaming), paramedics arrived to check him over in case the bump on his head and caused internal problems. He passed their checks but he was still inconsolable. Because of his age, they informed us he had to be taken to hospital for a second opinion. So at 6pm, over an hour after the screaming first started, we were loaded into the ambulance and on our way to hospital. Flynn calmed down half way to hospital and suddenly our happy, talkative, playful toddler was back again. He was absolutely fine by the time we got into the waiting room. Second opinion found nothing wrong and we finally got home around 9:15pm.

The ordeal was too much for Jordan, who cried with Flynn at one point. He was exhausted and passed out in his chair at 9:30pm. It was a completely bizarre and very surreal situation and since then a few people have floated the idea of Flynn's behaviour being caused by night terrors. He's never had night terrors before and neither Jordan or I have any experience with night terrors, so we're educating ourselves on them in case that was the cause and it ever happens again. It wasn't a pleasant experience and it left us drained for a good 24 hours. So, even if the weather had been nice, we probably would've postponed the beach trip anyway because we all needed some rest.

Hoping the weather is nice next week so we can still take the kids to the beach while Jordan is off. Fingers crossed for a nicer week, next week.

Until next time
Alli xo

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Sorting my future

What a wet Wednesday we are having here. Sorry, couldn't resist the opportunity for an alliteration. I like alliteration. But in all seriousness, it is very wet, grey and miserable outside today so we're keeping warm and dry inside. Staying home has given me time to sort some stuff out for my near future.

First, I had my nuisance follow up call from my "work coach" at Universal Credit. Seriously, I cannot wait to get off this system! Basically, the work coach was just checking in to see if I'd done what she told me to do back in May. You can see the details of that conversation in my 'Feeling Controlled' blog post. Anyway, I informed her that I now plan on doing full time study next instead of part-time and thankfully she didn't try and talk me into doing anything else. She just explained what will happen financially when I start studying. She was actually very helpful and I feel more confident about studying now. She did ask if I'd considered childcare for Flynn, tp which I said I wanted to be home with him and she was very supportive of that, which was a welcome surprise. She even went as far to say that it's my life and they don't want to push me to do something that I don't want to do. That statement really surprised me!

So I got that phone call out of the way and then looked at what documentation I needed for student finance and of course it's a British passport (which I don't have) or my birth certificate (which I don't have). I got my learners permit in order to apply for my birth certificate which I plan to do next month (this month is already expensive enough). I am planning on getting my British passport too though. For that though, I need both my birth certificate as well as my mums. So today, I ordered a copy of my mums birth certificate and once I have my birth certificate, I'll apply for my British passport. Then I'll have all the important documents I'll ever need. My drivers license, my birth certificate, my Australian passport, my British passport as well as my mums birth certificate (just in case).

Feeling good today about getting all this sorted. Just another step ticked off. Who knew getting organised could be so enjoyable? Oh no, I'm turning into Monica from Friends!

Until next time,
Alli xo

Monday, 12 August 2019

Vala's home!!!

Happy Monday everyone! I am very sorry for the lack of posts last week, I kinda just wanted to take a break from everything and just have a little bit of me time. I pretty much just rested up, did some adulting (got housework done) and gamed a little as well. I'll try and make up a few posts for you but until then....

...Vala's home!!! That's right, we got our beautiful Vala Bug home on Saturday evening and I made sure to get in plenty of cuddles. The week she was away at her dads, he made her video call us every day and she always seemed kinda sad. She was usually in her pjs with unbrushed hair and she'd tell us she'd been playing video games. She never seemed her usual bubbly self. She always told us she missed us too. The second week she was away, she stayed with her Nanna and we didn't hear from her once. She never called but her Nanna messaged me every couple of days to tell me how she was and to share some photos with me. Yesterdays photo (and the one featured here) was taken by her Nanna at a petting zoo. Vala had so much fun with her Nanna, uncles, aunts and cousins. She was happy and was kept so busy that she didn't feel the need to call us. She talked about us a lot  though apparently. I missed her but didn't need her to call because I knew it meant she was happy and having a great time.

I was a little upset to hear that Vala wasn't in the best condition when her Nanna picked her up from her dads though. Apparently, she was "a little bit manky" and she had a shower soon after getting to her Nanna's. Her clothes hadn't been washed either and were scrunched up and shoved into her bag. They were dirty, smelly and "manky" and all had to be washed upon arrival at her Nanna's. She ended up borrowing some of her cousins clothes until hers were clean and dry. Good thing she has a cousin who's only 3 months older than her and wears the same size clothes. I was disappointed that it appeared she'd not had a good time at her dads. She says she did but said she didn't do anything while at his and her calling every time would suggest she was bored and homesick. Plus the manky condition she apparently was in, also makes me a little angry. I'm glad that she went to her dads first and got to end her trip away on a massive high rather than having a great week at her Nanna's and then ending her trip feeling bored and low at her dads doing nothing.

Either way, she's home now and we've got a lot of fun lined up over the next few weeks and I'm excited to have this family time. Jordan's off for 2 weeks so this is gonna be great!

Until next time,
Alli xo

Sunday, 11 August 2019

Sunday, 4 August 2019

Friday, 2 August 2019

Mental health crash.

Hello everyone, I'm going to try and keep this post short today because honestly, I'm not even in the right head space to be writing it but here goes.

Yesterday, I suffered a major downward spiral with my mental stability. How? I spoke to my mum. Now, my mum didn't really say anything to cause the drop in my mood, although she did feel the need to point out that her 88 year old dad is flying from the UK to Aus for my little sisters wedding. She likes to drive that "other people from the UK visit us, why can't you?" knife in whenever the opportunity arises. It stings whenever she does it but it wasn't the main source of my mood drop. No, instead she sent me videos of my family all celebrating my nephews 3rd birthday. It was a kind gesture on her part, trying to involve me in celebrations that happened last week. It hit me really hard though. I never stop missing my family and every time I see videos or photos of them all together, having a good time, I feel sad that I'm not there. However, in one of the videos, my brother is talking and I didn't even recognise his voice. I could hear his Australian accent and his voice sounded completely different to what I remember. I realised that he has become a stranger to me. They all have. The mere fact, I can hear all their accents just goes to show that I've been gone for too long. I started crying and then I didn't stop. I miss my family so much and I'm always feeling homesick. What really hurts is the way everyone back home talks to me; like I don't want to come home to see them. They always come across as annoyed at me because I haven't flown over to visit yet. It really feels like they think I don't want to come back. Of course I do. I'm an extremely family orientated person who left her family behind. When I left, I thought I'd be back again to visit in approx 18 months because that's when my ex promised we'd go back to visit. When I left I didn't think I wouldn't see my family again for 8+ years! That's how long it's been nearly. This October will be 8 years since I left. It's been 2 years since I saw my dad last. 5 years since mum came to visit and 7 years since I last saw my two sisters. I haven't seen my brother since I left Australia. I haven't seen any of my cousins or my Aussie grandad either. Being away from my family for this long has torn open a void in my heart. A void that ever day I try to fill with food and material things to temporarily make me feel a little better. It's why I'm so fat now.

Speaking of fat. I hadn't weighed myself in 3 weeks because I couldn't be bothered and because of the heat and life being a bit hectic, I also didn't keep to the Slimming World plan at all. I still kept active and I didn't eat that bad but today I weighed myself and my heart broke when I saw that somehow I managed to put on 3kg in 3 weeks! I struggled to reach up to a mere 2.5kg in my first 8 weeks and in the space of 3 off weeks, I put 3kg on. Sandwiches and Ice-cream will have been the major culprits. With it being so warm, I didn't want to cook in the kitchen at all so we've been pretty much living off sandwiches and ice-cream. We've had a few take outs as well, because we didn't want to cook in the heat. I honestly thought I'd be back to my starting weight when I stood on the scales today; I didn't think i'd be 1.1kg heavier than my starting weight. I'm now officially the heaviest weight I have ever been. In the last two weeks before I went off plan for the 3 weeks, I gained collectively 0.5kg. That means in the 3 weeks I was off Slimming World completely, I gained 3.1kg. So that new information, on top of how broken I felt yesterday, my mental health has just crashed. Like, honestly I can't even put into words how I feel right now. My heart feels broken, I feel dead inside and there's 100 different negative voices screaming in my head right now. Screaming things like "we knew you'd fail." "You're the biggest failure in the world." "You're such a disappointment to yourself and your family." "It's a good thing you can't go home because look at you, think your family wants to see how gross you are now." etc etc. There is a flicker of flame inside of me that's wanting to push through this and fight; to lose the weight again. However, to use a metaphor here, I feel as though someone has put a glass over a lit candle and that flame is slowly fading as the oxygen is being starved from the space around it. The glass is my mental barrier and if it doesn't get removed soon, I worry my flame will die out completely. Basically what I'm saying is, I've not given up yet but my will, my strength, my hope....it's fading fast and I barely have much fight left in me. I wanted to use this time to go hard and knuckle down but instead I just failed...again. Here's hoping things get better soon. Unrelated, but to prove I have kept active, my July Race At Your Pace medal arrived yesterday. I recorded 85 miles of my 50 mile challenge. I stop recording around July 25th so I probably did closer to 100 miles last month. I guess I just didn't walk enough.

Until next time,
Alli xo