Category Archives: kids

OPEN MIC – Make Memories With Your Kids That Will Last Forever!

OPEN MIC

 

Welcome my Guest for this week’s Open Mic.

ISABEL SCOLLEN

ISABEL & AARON

My name is Isabel Scollen.  I am married to Aaron & have 3 girls.  Aaron & I met in Leeds & got married in 2001.  I am British but was born in the Northeast of Brazil in the City of Recife.  I enjoy meeting new people & developing strong friendships.

I am interested in topics that include family life, marriage, children etc.  I love God & everything related to Him.

Make Memories With Your Kids That Will Last Forever!

When my friend Lizzie asked if anyone would like to contribute in her blog my first reaction was “I would love to.”

I love sharing the wonderful things that God blessed us to do as a family.  The benefits of all those little things and big things that we do in life count for a healthy and happy child’s present and future.

As Christians, we commit our children to God, we recognize that as in Psalm 127 “Children are an inheritance from the Lord”, they are a blessing.

Beginning of our Journey

Only 7 months after getting married, I found out that I was pregnant with my first daughter(Hannah).  When we were considering what to call her, we found out how significant names are in the Bible.  Each name has a meaning and that name can have a major impact on a child’s future.

The name Hannah seemed to fit like a glove.  From the Hebrew Hannah means “helper”, “grace” and “graciousness”.  She is a very independent, talented, inventive and successful child who has always been willing to help others.

Our second child “Alicia” comes from the Spanish meaning “noble one”.  Her name was adapted from her grandmother’s name “Alice”.  Strong willed, thoughtful, powerful and intelligent would some up Alicia.  She loves technology like her Dad!

Bethany, from the Hebrew meaning “house of figs”, born from the Bible as a place name rather than a person’s name.  Bethany was the place where Jesus visited with his close friends, Lazarus, Mary and Martha.

It was also the place where Lazarus was brought back from the dead (and this resurrection story is the reason we chose this name for our Bethany – but more on this another time!). Bethany is a very happy child: communicative, creative, optimistic and sociable.

Each one is so different and unique in their own way.

Hannah and Alicia are quite close in age and I often dressed them in matching outfits. When you are a new Mum, you want to keep everything fair.  If you give something to one, you feel the need to give the same thing to the other.  But as time goes on you realize that each one has a unique character – you can buy for each according to their character needs and fashion trends.

Here are some photos.

ISABEL, AARON & KIDS

ALL 3 GIRLS

Today they are all dressed differently according to their taste.  Mum checks it out so they don’t come home with a bright pink skirt, green top and stripy socks to go to a wedding!

Making memories…

Back to the title of this post – how do we make memories with our children?

1) We have a custom in our family, that for every birthday, we start the day with a mini cake or breakfast in bed for the birthday boy or girl.  We sing “Happy Birthday”, blow out candles and gather all the cards and gifts from the family and open them up in bed.  We usually have a party within a couple of days for school and family friends to celebrate together, but we also love our little “family party” in the morning (lots of photos to keep the memories alive)!

ISABEL PARTY

2) Family weekends away or days out are a must.  We go to the beach, nature reserves and if the budget will allow theme and holiday parks.  For those with family who are not local, then visits to grandparents, aunts & uncles and cousins are great opportunities.  Our girls don’t see their cousins very often, so when they do, we make an effort to make it special and memorable for them. Lots of photos again to reinforce those memories.

3) Once a year a family holiday for a week or two is very important.  They will never forget – whether it’s camping, Disney, or a package holiday.  The budget is not as important as the time and attention that they will get from Mum and Dad.

ALL 3 GIRLS PARIS

Small memorable things

1)  One to Ones.  We try to give each child the full attention of one parent on a regular basis. For example

– clothes shopping with Mum, going to the cinema with Dad, walking the dog together or even going for a ride in the car.

2)  Having regular family meals together.  Although this can be difficult with the work pressures of many families, try to find something which works for you.  It may be breakfast every morning with the kids, dinner or supper.

3)  Highs and Lows.  Once a day at a meal time, have each family member share their high (something great that happened today) and a low (something not so good that happened).

So that’s what I wanted to share – I hope you enjoyed it!

Isabel Scollen

 

Disclaimer : Opinions raised in this Open Mic series are entirely the words, thoughts & opinions of the guest author & are not necessarily the opinion of Lizzie Somerset’s Blog.  LS XO

Taking a Break – Cornwall Style

Hi friends,

It’s time for this Somerset family to pack up the car, leave a kitty sitter for our crazy cat, take a week off & recharge! ‘Proper job’ like.

We’re off to Cornwall & my favourite beach at Watergate Bay.

I’ve had so many fun, sun drenched (ish) Summer’s here with friends & just thinking about this beach makes me relax. It’s the kind of place that lets you catch your breath.

Going there as a family will be a happy place for all of us.

In true Brit style we’ll be packing our buckets & spades, wellies & flip flops; umbrellas & sun cream. This in England after all! But whether sun or rain, we’ll be on the beach every day.

I love the outdoors, I love the sound of the children’s laughter carrying over the beach, the pat on the bucket, the castles standing a little lopsided. Make sure you pop a flag in that!

We’ll go crabbing & rock pooling, nap & read books.

We’ll get salty fresh air & salty chips in a bag; eat our weight in 99 ices (with a flake) & huge golden pasties.

It won’t be perfect, we’ll queue to get in. The kids will whinge & my hair will be across my face, Atlantic Ocean style!

We’ll eat badly, the kids will live on crisps & yoghurt. There won’t be a Five A Day in sight. I may have too many glasses of wine, I’ll forget to wear makeup or take photo’s, but we’ll have the Best. Time. Ever.

This…..*breathes deeply* is MY kind of holiday.

To those in the know raise your glasses girls, TO THE SUMMER! Cheers!! I’ll be thinking of you all.

See you after the break friends!

Lizzie XOXO

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It’s the Little Things – May Bank Holiday

imageHey friends,

Here are some snaps from the time we spent in the garden as a family this weekend.  We love bank holidays, to us they are perfect opportunities to have real family time together.  Weekends are often full of swimming lessons & Church.SH Train

sweet bea train Sweet Bea garden rolypoly

Both the sweet kids just love this Thomas the Tank Engine we got from a Table Top Sale.

We took advantage of this precious day off & played in the garden & had a barbeque!

Mr S

Mr S having a well deserved beer!

I tried so hard to make homemade lamb burgers, but unfortunately I didn’t bind them together well enough & as Mr S tried to turn them they fell apart! We decided to cook them anyway in the frying pan & creatively I turned them into lamb hash.  That’s what life is all about, if life hands you lemons, make lemonade!

burgers lamb after

In other news I didn’t get shortlisted for the BIB awards, & I felt abit sad about that.  Then I got really excited about voting fot the amazing bloggers that did make the shortlist!

I was totally blown away to be nominated by the lovely & ever so encouraging Kathy at IB Designs Blog for not only the BIB awards in the Family category but also for the Team Member Readership Award!  Kathy has liked every single one of my posts since I started blogging in August, I have so appreciated her encouragement from across the pond!

Here are the rules:

  1. The Nominee of the Wonderful Team Membership Reader Award shall display the logo on his/her post/page and/or sidebar.
  2. The nominee shall nominate 14 readers they appreciate over a period of 7 days. This can be done at any rate during the week.
  3. The nominee shall name his or her Wonderful Team Member Readership Award Nominees on a post or on posts during the 7 day period
  4. The nominee shall make these rules or amended rules keeping to the spirit of the Wonderful Team Member Readership Award known to each reader he nominates.
  5. The nominee must finish this sentence and post: “A great reader is ……

wonderful team award

A great reader is……a person who really invests in & believes in the writer.

That’s my mid week friends! I’ll leave you with a precious photo of the sweet siblings, I hardly ever manage to get them together & I just love the look SH is giving SB! Sweet precious moments that are to be treasured.

kids garden

Until the next time friends, have a happy hump day & Happy May!

Thanks to Jess & Ashley for the link up!

Lizzie XOXO

 

 

Take a Moment – Yummy Mummy Set

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What is a Yummy Mummy? Actually now I think of it what is a Crummy Mummy?

I’d like to think I’m these things first & foremost:

I am a present Mummy

I am a fun Mummy

I am a wise Mummy

I am a fair Mummy

I am a loving Mummy

I am a creative Mummy

I am a relational Mummy

I am a serving Mummy

I am a faithful Mummy

These are certainly the attributes I want to work hard on anyway.

Rather than feel part of the Yummy Mummy Set I’d like to think I just put my sweet kids first.

What do you think a Yummy Mummy is? Do we (society & individuals) put too much expectation & pressure on ourselves as Mother’s/women?

I’d love to know your thoughts!

Lizzie XOXOXO

Five on Friday – Best Foot Forward Spring/Summer 2014

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Holla! How are you on this fine day? (grey UK-side).

My mind is a bit of a muddle today, being up with Sweet Bea in the night has made my brain a bit fuzzy! That’s where blogging is brilliant.  I know that by the time I have these ideas down & out in the blogosphere I will feel better & be able to think a bit clearer.

If you don’t already write, I can tell you writing everything down is free therapy! You’re welcome.

Today FEET!  The part of the body I feel we easily neglect & yet we are on them all day & we put them through a lot.

Here are my 5 tips & product suggestions to help you put your best feet forward this Spring/Summer 2014!!!

O N E – GET A PEDICURE

Even if you only have time for one treatment this Spring/Summer go & get yourself a pedicure, your feet will seriously thank you.

Think an hour or more getting your feet painted is a little too luxurious?  Most salons offer mini Pedi’s which should take around 30 minutes & are a little cheaper.  That’s more than enough to set you up & perk up your tootsies for the warmer weather!

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T W O – WASH YOUR FEET

This is a tip for every day not just when your feet are out for all to see.  Even though this seems abit top level, I bet you forget regularly!

Next time you have a shower wash those feet! In between the toes too, no cheating! Dry them properly too, then move onto Step Three.

T H R E E – FOOT CREAM/FOOT BALM

My feet get so hot in the warmer weather & add walking/running around the house/garden a thousand times a day with the Sweet Kids  & they are d-i-r-t-y! Like proper and my ankles hurt too!

Washing your feet, spraying with a cooling spray & moisturising them will cool them down & take care of those tooties.  I love anything with a cooling element to it.

I’ve tried a few products over the years  but lately I’m loving Burt’s Bee’s range.  I was given a tube of Burt’s Bees Foot Balm as a gift .  One for the evening when you have a bit more time, it takes awhile to sink in, but it’s luxury in a tube.  The smell is heavenly, a mix of coconut & mint (although it states just coconut).  You can get this lovely foot balm at various outlets.

Now I’m sold on the range I need to decide between these two beauties when my little tube runs out!

bees bees2

Peppermint

Coconut

You can find the range at John Lewis, Boots, Debenhams or Amazon amongst others.

F O U R – REST YOUR FEET

Ever feel like the kids have gone to bed & you’re still rushing around like a loony trying to tidy up?

Take a break, put your feet up for 5 minutes, read a blog post or two. Have a cup of tea & then I recommend you  read this seriously funny post before tidying the kids toys away for the night.

playmobil flip flops

Photograph courtesy of Hurrah for Gin.

Katie at Hurrah for Gin  will get you into the swing of tidying with style, I promise it’ll set you up for the next day of free play with your Sweet Kids!

F I V E – TREAT YOUR FEET

Every year needs a new pair of sandals.

I’ve scoured Pinterest & the internet for you & fallen for these lovelies for 2014, what do you think? Strappy or strappy? Strappy it is! These are my favourite, the expensive ones of course!

Most likely you’ll find me at buying my next pair at River Island or Topshop although I wish I could afford the Tory Burch pair!

Thanks to my sweet hosts, April, Christina, Darci & Natasha.

Don’t forget to read their lovely posts.

Until the next time friends have a sweet day!

Lizzie XOXO

nb. This post is not sponsored & all thoughts & opinions are entirely my own, LS XO

 

Five on Friday – ‘Mama Needs a Break’ 5 Pamper Ideas Without Leaving the House

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Hey friends,

Linking up again with my lovely hosts over the pond. April, Christina, Darci & Nathasha. Clink their names to see their blogs & show them some love!

Let’s face it lovelies, unless the sweet kids are at School us Mama’s don’t often get a chance to relax sans kids. You’re either looking after children + housework, or out working + running the home.

The Easter holidays, although fun with both kiddos is not a break.  As a Mum that stays home it got me to thinking that actually none of the holidays are relaxing for us Mama’s, in fact they create more work & not less!

So I sat down & came up with ways to have some positive down time during the hectic without a hard hit on the wallet!

1// Take a Bubble Bath

bubble bath

This is actually my number one way to relax & it sounds so simple but if you’re going to have a bubble bath make it count & stay in it for A LONG TIME. Read a book or magazine, get those scented candles out.

You have no idea how often I forget to do this. Such a simple way to pamper yourself, without leaving the house or need of a babysitter!

Takes 20-30 mins, Costs –  Bubble Bath, Candle & Water.

2// Paint Your Nails

I’d love to have my nails painted regularly but it’s just not possible to go to the salon on a regular basis. So a home job in the evenings it is.

I made the mistake of trying to paint my nails while looking after the kids. Orange nail varnish now adorns the side of my sofa. Yep.

Takes 30 mins, Costs – Nail varnish, Nail file Approx. £5-10

3// Face Pack

This doesn’t take as long or cost as much as you think. I like these packs, you can pick them up from any supermarket, just add it onto your shower (or bubble bath) in the evening.

face pack

They make your face feel fresh & rejuvenated & come in loads of different flavours, I love the chocolate one, I’m all over that.

Takes 15 mins, Cost £1

4// Get Weeding/Activity

Over the Easter weekend I set to weeding our boarder & around the apple tree we planted for Sweet Harry.  Hubby watched the kids. I could still hear them playing & having a great time together, but I wasn’t responsible for supervising them.

It took over an hour to weed my little patch but I was so pleased with the result & while I was doing it I was so focussed on it I didn’t think about anything else at all!

weeding

This is a win/win because my garden also looks great, which gives me pleasure every time I look at it.

Takes 1 hr, Costs – The price of a spade

5// Read

I just don’t plan in time to read even though I love it.  By evenings I’m pretty wacked.  This is where I need to remind myself to read during Sweet Bea’s nap time.  It seems like a luxury when there is always so much to do around the house.  I think it’s important to give your mind a break, a change from the norm.  You know what they say, a change is as good as a rest.

Takes – As long as you want, Costs – Dependant on your book or magazine of choice!

What do you like doing? Plan it in.

Plan in baths, face packs & painting nails in the evenings while the kids are asleep. For reading you may have to put a timer on it so you don’t get so into it you forget to do the laundry! For the weeding or activity you like doing you may need to rope in your partner, parents or a friends help to watch the kids.

Make sure you ask someone you love & trust, they may just love the opportunity to watch your sweet babe’s for an hour to bless you!! Maybe you could do it for a friend too! Share the love.

I hope you enjoyed my 5 this week & that they encourage you!

See you next time!

Lizzie XOXO

 

 

Have we met?

Hi! I’m Lizzie,

Hot Couple

A sweet South-Western girl from the UK! Wife & Mama to two gorgeous sweet babes known on here as Sweet Harry & Sweet Bea.

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I live in Somerset the most beautiful county (I think) of the United Kingdom.

If we haven’t met already, HI THERE! The blog is here to encourage you (& me) in this journey called life.

Before you decide to join me on the ride here are some things you might like to know!

– I love coffee, especially Starbucks & Costa. I also think you can’t beat an English cuppa & a digestive!
– I love Jesus, not negotiable.
– I love shopping & trends in home décor, gifting & fashion.
– I love my husband & kids, they are like treasure to me.
– I believe in counting my blessings daily.

Are we friends yet?

Follow on along at lizziesomerset.wordpress.com (soon to be lizziesomerset.com) Exciting times ahead!

Lizzie XOXO

It’s the Little Things – Easter Weekend Recap

imageHey friends,

Linking up with Ashley & Jess on this lovely Wednesday!

We have so enjoyed our long Easter weekend.

Being together as a family just filled me with joy.  Also, help with the kids was a godsend after a long two weeks off preschool for Sweet Harry.

We saw both families, ate ALOT of Easter eggs, praised God at Church on Easter Sunday & relaxed at home. Apart from Sunday we’ve had lovely weather, so have been outside most of the time, playing, weeding, planting new plants & having  the first BBQ of the year.

Good Friday was especially fun.  Some quality time together was well overdue so we decided to head out to Montacute House for their Egg Hunt.

We were blessed with a beautiful sunny day & my Mum was able to join us too!

Here’s some photo’s of the egg hunt (sponsored by Cadbury).

Base Camp

We got our trail pack which included a map, pencil & a grid. Daddy, Grandma & SH went round together (while I tramped on slowly behind with SB in buggy + bags) finding the clues & drawing them in the right squares.  There were loads of families doing the trail & it created a lovely atmosphere.

Start

Setting off On the trail

When all 6 squares had been drawn in you got the whole picture.  As you can see it was a bunny!  SH absolutely loved it & when we asked him what the picture was he said it was a donkey!!!  We laughed so hard at that, I guess Mr Somerset isn’t such a Picasso.  Thankfully there is a donkey in the Easter story!

Looking at the clues

Beautiful Donkey

SH then took the picture back to the Trail Start to get his Cadbury Easter egg.  It was so well organised, we’ll definitely go again next year.

The clue was at the end We were there too! Eggsplorer

What did you do over Easter? I hope you all had a great Easter weekend!

Until the next time friends

Have a great day!

Lizzie XOXO

Take a Moment – Good Friday 2014

Hey friends,

I hope you are all looking forward to an Easter weekend with friends & family as much as we are?!

For me as a follower of Christ, I love Easter. It’s by far my favourite holiday!

I think this is mainly due to the fact that Jesus actually gets a mention here & there, & that warms my heart!

I think Easter is so much fun for children too.

For some reason I’ve been thinking a lot about passion recently. I think sometimes life can seem a bit blah & like nothing exciting is happening.

I believe in those moments of feeling stagnant that it actually may be Jesus asking us to stay still for a little while.

We’ve had a lot of changes in the Somerset ranch lately, lots of extra learned confidence, starting the blog, Sweet Harry starting preschool & Sweet Bea starting nursery. I’ve finally gotten to goal weight at Weight Watchers & feeling great!

So I’m seeing this season as letting things shake down & settle for a bit. Letting go & trusting God.

If I want passion I only have to look to the Cross. To the One who loves me passionately without limits & who knows me so well.

This Good Friday I’m reminded again of His goodness to me everyday, not just on this special day, but everyday where I get to share in the victory of His resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Today we’re going on an Easter egg hunt at Montacute House with the sweet kiddos! Quality family time is what we need.

To Jesus all the honour, praise & fame.

Until the next time friends.

Have a great day!

Lizzie XOXO

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Take a Moment – A View of Perfectionism

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Perfectionism. Sounds perfect doesn’t it?

A person who has perfectionism must always be top of their game. Top of everything in fact!

Their house must be spotless, beautifully decorated, their kids are polite, well dressed, destined for great things.

They’re successful.
Popular.
Throw the best parties.

They have prospects & aim high!

The problem is they have perfectionism. It’s the core. Trust me, it’s like an illness.

It won’t kill you, it will just make shame part of every day life.

People who suffer with perfectionism are not perfectionists. A perfectionist is someone who is good with the finer points, the detail.

This is much, much more complex.

Perfectionism sees what the world wants you to be, magnifies it x10000 & sets that as the target, if you can’t hit the target? Yep, shame!

The sad thing about it is the person with perfectionism will never reach the lofty heights they set themselves because the high expectations are so high they are literally unreachable!!

They want to be the best. But when the best isn’t possible & they fail again, because it’s exhausting or just totally unacheivable…there it is again, shame.

I’m popping the spotlight on perfectionism today because at the end of last year I realised I suffered with this personality trait. When I read the definition for it, everything clicked into place.

When I had Sweet Harry I was desperate to be a Yummy Mummy. One of those women who looked amazing, had an easy baby, well dressed, house up together, hair & make up beautifully done. I would bake & cook nutritious meals. Clean & decorate. Host coffee mornings & laugh easily with other Mother’s on buggy walks.

Then I had the baby.

The dream that I would be a perfect mother crumbled. Yummy Mummy? More like Crummy Mummy!

Who knew having a baby would
1. Knock you for six.
2. Leave you feeling exhausted, inadequate & totally clueless.

For a person with perfectionism, tiredness was not an option because tiredness equalled failure. If you’re exhausted, you can’t be doing it right.

Ever heard of procrastination? Perfectionism is procrastination just in a prettier word.

I’m at the point now where I know when it flares up & how to control it. But when I didn’t even know what it was or that I had it, it held me back.

If this resonates with you look up perfectionism & start on the road to combat it.

It’s not what God wants for your life.

He sent his son Jesus to die on the cross at Easter so that I can be free. He loves me for who I am, not what I achieve.

For my children He wants a Mother who is THERE & shows LOVE. Not a beautifully decorated home.

For my husband, he asks me to be a PRESENT wife, ready to hear. Not a beautifully made up dolly bird.

For my friends he asks me to PRAY & stand with them in all aspects of their lives. Not to be the centre of attention or the perfect hostess.

Let’s be real. What is perfect anyway? I know now I am enough.

Celebrate the small successes. Count your blessings. Live in the moment.

Let Grace deal with the rest.

Until the next time friends
Have a great day

Lizzie XOXO