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And then there were 5...

I feel like I'm only just emerging, like a gorilla from the midst, from the hazy blur of the early days of a mum of 3! The first weeks with Lola were wonderful, filled with moments I have tried desperately to embed in my memory, but, in honesty I felt like I was in some sort of la-la land, staring with hazy expression at mums talking to me in the playground, trying to string some sort of sensible sentence together.

In lots of ways going from 2 to 3 has been easier than 1 to 2- my older two, all credit to them, have taken it in their stride and poured out lots of love on their little sis. Already it feels like she has always been a part of us. The hardest parts of the day are 5:30- bedtime (we like to call this crazy hour!) and the pressure to get out of the house by 8:30am for school- I just about got the hang of it in time for school finishing on Friday!

If you are about to embark on the adventure of having 2+ here are my top tips for survival...

1. Cake. Lots of it. Forget that diet- that can come later.. You need some serious mama fuel!

2. Ask for help, whether it's off friends, family or the other half.. You aren't in this alone and we need our tribe around us. Don't be too proud to accept offers, it's not a weakness! And if you are feeling isolated, I know it's hard but try to see what's going on locally for mums/dads so you can build a supportive community. 

3. Remember that although schools have their attendance targets they may bang on about, being on time for school is not worth shouting at your children for or feeling really stressed about. Aim to be on time for sure- but if you are a little late occasionally it is not going to ruin your child's chances of a successful education! 

4. Having said that.. Throw that mama guilt right out of the window! We all have our bad days and we all make mistakes.. Parenting can be tough. But it's good for our children to see that we aren't perfect, we get it wrong and we need to say sorry sometimes. 

5. Crank up that music and dance around the kitchen. Be silly, don't take life too seriously. We need to laugh at ourselves.. Plus- I've found this to be the best remedy to snap myself out of a right old mood! 

6. (This one is really tough and I'm constantly reminding myself of it) No comparisons. You are you. Your situation is totally different to hers or his or theirs, tell your own story. 

7. Instagram is not real life. I love Instagram and all these social media channels can be great inspiration and community. But they are someone's highlight reel. Peoples houses are not always that clean, their family moments not always that perfect and I guarantee you there will be some plastic tat hidden away in that perfectly monochromed nursery 😉! 

8. Make time for you. Someone wise once said to care for others you first need to care for yourself. So try to carve out a little time for you. A coffee out, a long bath, a quiet walk, time to paint your nails.. Whatever you like doing make a bit of time amongst the chaos for it. 

9. Enjoy your babies .. Before we know it they'll be borrowing our cars to go out with their mates, sneaking in past midnight and sleeping in til 12.  So cuddle them, kiss them, watch them, listen to them, enjoy them and leave that to-do list un-ticked a little longer!

For Kids... with Love...

A month ago I started an instagram hashtag.. #forkidswithlove to try and raise a bit more noise for some beautiful, handmade products out there for little ones. It's been great to see so many joining in and showcasing such wonderful, unique and lovingly made items.

Here's a few that caught my eye this month...

Paper Heart Designs 

Tracy is behind the lovely squares that make up @paperheartdesigns. She has a passion for interiors and all things monochrome. Tracy lives in Wiltshire and is mum to Evie, 10, her background is in retail and she worked for a high end children's store on the King's road. Her skills include upholstery and photography and she recently launched Paper Heart Designs as her new creative venture. Her hope is to be inspired by others in the instagram community and to learn more so that she can become better. We think her prints are already pretty amazing.. keep your eye out for more gorgeousness from her and go say hello @paperheartdesigns.

Tilly Bob Bunny

These delightful little bunnies are made by Holly who lives in surrey with her two girls. She has taken a break from working at Hampton Court Palace to be a full time mummy and make her Tilly Bob Bunnies, the name inspired by her youngest daughter Tilly. She's developed her pattern over the last few months and has been making custom Bunnies which are £35 each. Keep an eye out for her website which will soon be stocked with her lovely makes or find her on facebook. Go say hello @holly_tillybobbunny.

I also loved these by makers @mileyandmoss, @aliceperrydesigns, @morethan_just and @kateanddaisyhandmade.

Thanks so much to everyone who has joined in so far, I've loved seeing all your makes. Keep sharing and tagging your pics with #forkidswithlove and tag me @blossomandbear.. happy making!