Tigerlilly Quinn

Saturday, 27 August 2016

When my dad & brother came to stay / Walking babies and Life Lately

When my family came to stay :

I don't see my family much, in fact probably about once a year at best and with some of my siblings even two years can go by without us seeing each other. I'd love to say we are the family that FaceTime everyday or catch up without fail once a week, but we're not. Our family dynamic isn't perfect, sometimes it's downright messy and emotional but they do mean a great deal to me. I spent a lot of my life wishing relationships with my parents and siblings were picture perfect or 'perfect' in my idea of what parents were meant to be like or what sisters were meant to be like, or what I was meant to be like even.

What I've learnt as I grew older is that you cannot make people the way you want them to be, just like I'm sure I'm not always the sister or daughter they always want me to be. Accepting people how they are and hoping they will do the same for me. I'm just as flawed as anyone else for sure. One thing I know is that my parents are good people, they have morals and values that I respect immensely, they care a lot and they fight for what they believe in. We love each other, even if we see each other rarely or if only speak every few months. Relationships are messy often, they can be painful and wonderful and lonely and happy and lovely and sad and all the in-between. I can be as complicated as the next person, so can my parents or siblings or partner, I feel like relationships are never easy, are a constant work in progress.

One thing for certain though and that's how my dad loves being a grandad (or a 'grumpy'). The way he plays with my children, the same way I remember him playing with me. With so much love and enthusiasm that they are his whole world just the way we were when we were small. My dad was a stay at home dad, my childhood is full of wonderful memories of our time together.

When we picked Wilf up from nursery with my dad last week he literally leapt into his arms. It doesn't matter if it's been six months or a year, the love my son has for my dad and my dad for him doesn't know any time restrictions. It makes my heart swell and ache at the same time. Life is complicated and life is simple at the same time.

My dad and brother were only down for one full day and it was raining so we grabbed some lunch at Bambalan and went to the Bristol Museum to look at the dinosaurs, I always take for granted how lucky we are to have free things like this to take the kids too. I don't think we've ever got bored just wondering around taking it all in. This time I realised one of the fossils I'd looked at tons of times was actually of a pregnant dinosaur with her little baby found next to her, I found that really moving! 

Just as they left we started to organise Wilf's room in preparation for some plastering to be done on it this week. We brought his old walker downstairs and just LOOK at what this little girl is doing! Slow down little baby I am not ready for this..

Just as they left we started to organise Wilf's room in preparation for some plastering to be done on it this week. We brought his old walker downstairs and just LOOK at what this little girl is doing! Slow down little baby I am not ready for this..

(Mabli's dress is from here*)

I made a little video of our week as usual, I hope you like it. I'm trying to constantly upload every Saturday and have so far kept to it for the past three weeks! If you wanted to subscribe or like my videos then it would mean the world to me!

Thanks as always for reading xx 

Friday, 26 August 2016

A spot of Yoga with Bear Nibbles

We've been a fan of BEAR Yo-Yos since Wilf was a little toddler. I remember him pointing them out at a counter and asking for them, I initially mistook them for sweets and told him he couldn't and then realised on closer inspection that they were actually 100% pure fruit roll ups! They've been a constant in our snack cupboard ever since, they contain no added nonsense and I LOVE the fact Wilf still thinks of them as a special treat over something like chocolate or cake (long may it last whilst I'm sneaking biscuits in the kitchen ;)).

When BEAR Nibbles got in touch to ask if we would like to work with them throughout this year on a series of monthly posts I was really thrilled as I see them as such a good fit for our family and lifestyle.

Our 'Little Paws Outdoors' kit arrived full of Paws nibbles for Wilf, Outdoor Alphabet cards and also a wildlife magazine from The Wildlife Trusts. This month BEAR is working with The Wildlife Trusts to encourage kids to get healthier and happier by enjoying the great outdoors. In every pack of BEAR Paws there are a series of Outdoor Alphabet Cards, each with a fun task on for the little ones to complete'.

As you might be able to tell from these pictures our first challenge was 'outside yoga'! Wilf literally jumped up and down when he saw the card as yoga is something we both love doing together. We started when I was pregnant with Mabli and we got ourselves yoga mats to do in front of my DVD. Since then we've also been enjoying watching a kids yoga channel which teaches things like relaxation and yoga moves to children stories. We've only ever done it in our living room infant of the TV though so it was lovely to give it a go in our garden instead!

Time outdoors is really important for growing kids I think, getting back to nature makes them healthy and happier. There are three outdoor activity cards in every pack of BEAR Paws and what's great is they have no added sugar and never from concentrates, just 100% fruit.

Downward Dog (pretty much the only move I can ever do and so good to stretch yourself out!)

The BEAR Nibbles packs all include cards with activities to do, from jam making to building dens. Sometimes having a prompt is the nudge I need to actually do an activity with Wilf and I find afterwards that we've been learning all sorts of skills without really thinking about it, I'm not massively good at imaginary play so having a 'thing' to do is really helpful for us both.

 As you can see he had a blast and this was a great way to get him having fun outdoors!

You can see a fun little video we did with them below!

In partnership with BEAR nibbles, do your kids like these snacks? What do you think of outdoor yoga? Find out more at Bear Nibbles and follow @Follow_The_Bear

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Good Friends and The Ivy Bristol

I've never considered myself a popular person, my entire school life was mainly spent trying not to get noticed by anyone and to fit in as much as I could. I spend a good majority of my life ridiculously shy and it's only really been the last five years or so that that has changed. Whilst I do have some close friends in my life I'm never been one of the popular girls, someone thats particularly good in big groups. So whilst I wouldn't say I have large social circle I do have a small group of besties.

I think you just know when you'll get on with someone, when they get you and all you don't have to try. When you can say pretty much anything and there are no awkward silences. When you know you can message them about something totally random at any time of day or have a good rant about something really silly but means a great deal to you at the time and they'll agree that whatever got you in a twist is 100% justified.

When you go 'glamping' but both agree afterwards that you'd rather be in a hotel near a cafe that does avocado toast.

When you switch from chatting politics to children to blogging to travel to food to clothes and everything in between in about ten minutes and still manage to keep track of what each other is on about. When your conversations stop and start a million times as you both have kids with you but it doesn't matter.

When you cheer each other on and are so proud of each others achievements.

Yep I'm talking about you Nichola West (and she's cringing right now for sure!)

The other night I was lucky enough to take a plus one for a complimentary meal at The Ivy. A night without interruptions from kids, one where we could leisurly drink our drinks not wolf down our meals in ten minutes flat. Absolute bliss!

I'd been pretty excited about this evening out for a while, it was going to be my first evening out after having Mabli. With Wilf my first evening out without him was full of anxiety, I left for this one like 'woo hoo!'. Funny how things change second time round ;)

( photo by Nell Mallia - this wasn't actually on the day but I was wearing this exact outfit so thought I'd include it! - Dress / Shoes / Bag ) I'll do a proper outfit post soon!

We were greeted by the General Manager who recommend delicious cocktails for us both and we set about catching up on all we'd missed from each others summers. Nichola has just come back from an amazing three week trip through Singapore and Hong Kong. Last year she spent weeks travelling through Malaysia with her family and her trips always inspire me to be a bit more adventurous with our travel. In fact her trip to Russia opened my eyes to a place I'd never thought to visit before, to ride the Red Arrow through the night to St Petersburg or visit Gorky Park, amazing!

We picked out a bottle of wine, chose our starter and mains and while the wine was flowing managed to cover this and that and all the in-between. I was laughing so much as the night went on that my sides were hurting and my eyes watering. It's only when you laugh so hard with a good friend that you realise how you haven't really been able to let loose for a while. Having a little baby is tough at times, its tiring and overwhelming and of course wonderful but having a couple of hours to just laugh and think of myself was absolute bliss. And what better location to do so?!

I kept saying how I felt like I was in the fancy restaurant in the Titanic, (still a favourite film haha)  which I think is because The Ivy is decorated perfectly in the most beautiful 1920's style. Every little detail had been thought out and felt so luxurious without being in the slightest bit over the top or garish. We were sat in the orangey and even with it pouring with rain outside it felt so bright and open sitting right next to a beautiful courtyard full of flowers.

And those tiles! Tiles of dreams for sure. I'm already planning another visit and plonking myself on that beautiful bar for a cheeky cocktail or two!

Our food was as expected impeccable, they had a couple of brilliant vegetarian options for both starters and mains. I'm pretty sure I could have eaten every single one of their pudding options (in fact I did end up eating some of Nichola's too!).

After an evening that felt just perfect in every way we ordered a strong coffee each and bundled into our cab missing the rain on our way out. Brilliant food in a beautiful setting with a best friend, I felt truly spoilt. We've already agreed we need to make this a regular thing!

I was invited to The Ivy in return for an honest review, all words and thoughts are my own 

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Refreshing our clothes with DYLON

dylon DIY pastel shoes

As you may be able to tell from my blog already we are a family that love colour. I always feel like if I dress cheerfully then it helps me to feel cheerful. That and I don't think I've ever really grown up so I tend to dress a little like my four year old, ha! We're lucky enough to live in a city that is also full of colour, from hot air balloon festivals to street art, to bright vibrant cafes and play parks I really feel like where we live happens to reflect our style perfectly too.

You may remember last month when we partnered with Dylon to re-create a corner of our living room, using cushions and a little wall hanging DIY dyed with Dylon colours. This month I'm going to be working with them again to show you how we used their products to brighten up our outfits!

dylon DIY pastel shoes

I thought it would be fun for Wilf and I to brighten up some of our shoes and I chose pastel colours to experiment with as they tend to be the shades we gravitate towards. Wilf chose the shade 'French Lavender' as purple is currently his favourite (although this changes weekly). I experimented with China Blue and Powder Pink. I picked up some cheap plain white espadrilles to experiment with, reasoning that you can never have enough shoes and why not had them in every different colour?

With my interiors makeover I wanted to have quite faded colours so didn't use the whole box of dye as recommended. This time however I wanted our colours to really pop so used the whole packet on two pairs of shoes each time I dyed a set.

With Wilf's shoes we experimented on some white ones he already owned, he thought it was really cool to be able to transform them like this. In hindsight I could have taken out the laces if I wanted them to remain white but as they are just decoration I don't think it matters too much. These are the ones we tried in the Powder Blue and you can see below him wearing his favourite ones in the French Lavender

I was so impressed with how the colour took to my white espadrilles!

dylon DIY pastel shoes

My favourite however was how bright the Powder Pink made them, I think it's the most gorgeous shade.

dylon DIY pastel shoes

Wilf and I decided to take our newly dyed colourful shoes to the perfect pastel spot for some photographs. I also chucked in an old white T Shirt of his when we did the Powder Blue shoes so he decided to team his purple shoes with his up-cylced top too.

Told you these colours were right up our street! 

dylon DIY pastel shoes

Matching our shoes to the pillars. Oh and Wilf was insistent on wearing his Junior Doctor badge with him the whole day and I had to carry the rest of his kit around in my bag. Lucky I have a massive Mary Poppins 'mum bag' the things I often have to cart around! 

dylon DIY pastel shoes

It was such a fun activity to do together and be able to create things that we can actually wear too. One of Wilf's favourite things is 'crafting' and he loved being able to pick out the colours and transform our clothes like this. Obviously being a bloggers child he's also pretty used to pictures being taken out and about, he even asks for his picture to be taken these days!

dylon DIY pastel shoes

What do you think of this simple DYLON DIY? Do you think it's something you'd try?

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