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Category: Lifestyle

HomeDNA at Home Genetic Testing Review – GPS Origins Ancestry

HomeDNA at Home Genetic Testing Review – GPS Origins Ancestry

*This post was written in collaboration with HomeDNA.

 

Recently I reviewed the healthy weight at home genetic testing from HomeDNA. I was so  impressed with the in-depth results I got, that when I was asked to review their ancestry test it was a total no-brainer for me. History has always been my thing and so the chance to find out more about my own ancestors and ancient family history, was something I just couldn’t pass up.

As with the first test I did with HomeDNA, they sent out a test kit to complete at home and send back to them. The test kit came with four swabs that I used to collect cells from the inside of both cheeks. It’s so easy to complete the swabs and all I had to do was seal them in the envelope provided, fill in all of my details and send them over to the lab for testing. The process is super simple, then all I had to do was sit back and wait for my results to arrive in my inbox! Once my test had been analysed, I received a report with detailed explanations into each area of my genetic origins.

GPS Origins genetic test –

This test is designed to uncover your ancestral lines, including the journey of your DNA. Once you get your results, you’ll learn about so much including; genetic communities that share your origins and you’ll discover why your ancestors settled in particular places. All of this information is gathered from a unique algorithm that has been developed by a team at Sheffield university, headed by Dr Dr Eran Elhaik.

Gene pool percentages –

The results that I found particularly interesting were my gene pool percentages. These are the percentages of different gene types that make me who I am!

My top three were;

  1. Basque Country – from my ancestors based in Europe.
  2. Fennoscandia – from my ancestors based in Norway, Sweden, Finland, a part of Russia known as Kola Peninsula and Denmark during the Viking Age.
  3. Orkney Islands – from a small group of Islands located off the North Coast of Scotland.

Before I took this test, I had no idea that my ancestors were located so far and wide! It’s so interesting to know how vast our gene pools really are.

 

 

DNA migration routes –

Once you’ve learnt all about what makes up your gene pool, you can then use the interactive map provided to find out more about the migrations routes of your ancestors. You can explore what was happening to them at specific times and places in history. Through this tool, I found out that my ancestors lived alongside the Swedish Vikings and that they lived through the 1349 Black Death in Sweden. There’s still so much more I have to read through, but I’m already so amazed at everything I’ve learned so far!

Theses reports from HomeDNA contain so much information, that initially it can all seem a little overwhelming. What’s great though, is that every report includes a guide to understanding your results. This really helps you to enjoy reading through your report, enabling you to gain a full understanding of who you are and where you came from! 

 

 

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Cosy Club – New Menu Review

Cosy Club – New Menu Review

*We were given a complimentary meal at Cosy Club for the purpose of this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. 

 

As parents, it’s not very often that we head out into our local cities. In fact, it’s a very rare occurrence! Before we had the girls, Hubs and I were suckers for a night out on the town with some great food thrown in for good measure. Alas, the littles have changed our ways, so these days when we get the opportunity to go out, we grab it with both hands and run like the wind! So when we were invited to our local Cosy Club to try out their new menu, you guessed it, we definitely didn’t say no.

The week that we visited Cosy Club was a particularly busy week for us. We had the biggest’s birthday and she had her first day at school. As you can imagine, I was a tad stressed throughout the week. Starting school has been so easy for our girl, but for me it’s been more trying than I imagined it would be. Letting your first born head out into the world is really difficult to get your head around, so a nice chilled out meal with Hubs was a real treat for us to regroup and catch-up.

Cosy Club –

Having never visited a Cosy Club venue before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. They describe the experience as ‘Mansion splendour meets village hall eccentricity’ and as it turns out that’s the perfect way to envisage a visit to Cosy Club. When we walked into the unassuming entrance we were met with a real treat! The doors open up into a large entrance hall with a big staircase, that heads up to the bar and restaurant. There are grand paintings trailing all the way up the staircase, flowing into the lounge and bar area which is full of big leather sofas to sink into and relax!

 

 

My favourite part of this venue was the huge restaurant area. This room looked really amazing with high ceilings, tall windows and it even had the original balcony still in place. This room just oozed history and the decor complimented this perfectly. From the deer heads on the wall, to the sparkling chandeliers and the quirky tables and chairs, this place just felt incredible to relax and enjoy a yummy meal in!

 

 

The food –

We were invited to Cosy Club to sample their new menu, which includes some of the most amazing food. We really were spoilt for choice!

Hubs and I had a good selection between us, take a gander at some of the great food we got to try;

 

Halloumi sticks with chipotle jam.

 

Squid & chorizo.

 

The Brigadier burger.

 

The Major-General burger.

 

Warm chocolate brownie.

 

Nutella and vanilla cream doughnut.

 

Overall, we had the best afternoon at our local Cosy Club. The food really was gorgeous and our puddings were to die for. The next time we get the chance to go out on a date night, we’ll definitely be heading back!

 

Find your local Cosy Club

 

 

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GreaterSkies Star Map Review – GIVEAWAY!

GreaterSkies Star Map Review – GIVEAWAY!

When Hubs and I were organising our wedding, I remember being so nervous on the run up to the big day. I’m not one for being the centre of attention anyway, so walking up the aisle in front of so many people was a terrifying thought. It was a difficult day too, as my grandfather had passed away just two days before. He had been ill for a while and we had booked the wedding within a short time, with the hope that he would be there. Unfortunately it wasn’t meant to be and our wedding day will always be a time of sadness and happiness, rolled into one. So when I was approached by GreaterSkies to review one of their star maps, I knew exactly which sky I would want to remember.

 

The GreaterSkies Star Map process –

Looking through the GreaterSkies website was a real treat. You choose the date, time and location of the sky you’d like to remember. Then you’re presented with an amazingly intricate image of the stars at the exact place and time you chose. The ordering process couldn’t be more simple!

You also have the option to add text at the bottom of the image. Ours states that it’s the sky over our village on the day of our wedding. I get a little sentimental each time I look at it!

 

 

Choosing your design –

Not only can you choose your preferred time and location, you can also choose the design that suits you best. I chose the night sky view, which is a predominantly black piece with white text. You can also choose the classic star map with a white background, or maybe their floral design is more up your street. There really is a design to suit everyone, which I think is great if you are giving the star map as a gift. It makes it even more personal.

 

 

Your GreaterSkies package –

GreaterSkies offer packages to suit everyone. The package we received is the night sky star map, which comes with a quality aluminium frame. It looks really sleek and has been a real conversation piece since it arrived. If you wanted to frame the print yourself, you can simply purchase the printed map and personalise it yourself. Alternatively you can purchase the download package and print your star map at home. This is a good option if you need your map in double-quick time!

 

 

The guys over at GreaterSkies would like to offer one of my lucky readers the chance to win a framed star map worth £118.95! All you have to do is enter using the form below, please do check out the terms and conditions…good luck! 

 

 

Win a Framed GreaterSkies Star Map Worth £118.95.

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Father’s Day Special – The Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Company GIVEAWAY!

Father’s Day Special – The Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Company GIVEAWAY!

Father’s Day is just around the corner and to celebrate we have a very scrumptious giveaway for you! Earlier on this week, the guys over at the Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Company sent us a super yummy, Father’s Day Belgian chocolate pizza to try out. Hubs was delighted with his delivery, as were the girls and I!

 

 

 

The Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Company make delicious chocolate gifts for all occasions, including wedding favours and gifts. They are so reasonably priced, they deliver quickly and they are the perfect gift to make any occasion extra special. We have a few birthdays coming up and a couple of weddings, I’ll certainly be adding a chocolate pizza to all of their presents!

 

 

The Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Company would like to offer my readers the chance to win a Father’s Day pizza! All you have to do is enter using the form below, please do check out the terms and conditions…good luck! 

 

Father’s Day Gourmet Chocolate Pizza

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Our Family Holiday at Bluestone Wales

Our Family Holiday at Bluestone Wales

*We were gifted a mid-week break at Bluestone National Park resorts for the purpose of this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own.

 

Recently, we were lucky enough to be invited to enjoy a mid-week break at Bluestone National Park Resort in Wales. My husband has wanted to holiday at Bluestone for some time now. He’d heard so many good reports from friends and colleagues about the place, so needless to say he was so excited to finally get to stay. Holidaying with two toddlers is never easy, but Bluestone promised so much fun and something to do whatever the weather.  We had high hopes for an extra special family holiday!

Perusing over the Bluestone Wales website before we went, I noticed that there were many activities that we could book before hand. Including hiring bikes and golf buggies for the week. There were also tonnes of activities included in our holiday, such as the Blue Lagoon swimming pool and a large activity centre. As it was our first time, we didn’t know what to expect and so we didn’t book anything beforehand. When we arrived though, we decided that we would hire a golf buggy for the week. The Bluestone site is huge and quite hilly, as much as our girls love to walk sometimes it proved a little too tiring for them. The golf buggy helped us get around the site with ease and our girls thought it was so much fun!

 

 

Free range fun –

The guys at Bluestone are huge believers in free range fun. The landscape and the activities they provide encourage both adults and kids to get outdoors and enjoy being with nature in the fresh air. This kind of holiday is perfect for us as a family, so when we found out that our lodge was right on the edge of the lake, we couldn’t have been happier. The girls loved walking around the lake and into the surrounding woodland each day. I loved waking up to such a beautiful view too!

When the weather is bad, there’s still so much fun to be had at Bluestone. Our girls were fans of the Blue Lagoon swimming pool. It has two smaller pools, including a special baby and toddler area, which is ideal when you have little children. The large pool has a wave machine and a lazy river, so there’s something for everyone. Our girls loved that the lazy river took you outside, especially when the sun was shining!

I was amazed by the activity centre at Bluestone. There’s something for every age group, including mini golf, soft play, a bouncy castle and a climbing wall. There’s a cafe for the adults too, which serves a mean burger if you’re feeling a bit peckish! The weather on our first day was particularly bad, so the activity centre was an absolute god send. The kids had so much fun and were completely worn out. If we’d holidayed anywhere else we’d have been cooped up all day, which with toddlers is almost always a disaster!

 

Idyllic surroundings –

Every which way you turn at Bluestone, you’re met by idyllic surroundings. My favourite part of the site is Camp Smokey! It’s a restaurant down in the woods, just by a stream with a small ford. We went down there one evening when it was quiet and it was just perfect. The kids loved playing in the stream and throwing sticks into the water from the bridge. We found a bench and the girls had their supper surrounded by nature. It was one of those night where the planets aligned and we all felt utterly content.

The village area of Bluestone has two playgrounds for the kids. One for the older children and an area specifically for tots. As our girls are in between ages, they enjoyed both playgrounds thoroughly! There are tree houses with walkways that join the two playgrounds, each tree house has a fun activity in it which were a massive hit with our girls. The village also has a grocery shop, coffee shop, restaurant, spa and a couple of boutique stores. We had lunch in this area a few times over our stay, the girls even enjoyed an ice cream in the sun!

 

Returning to Bluestone –

Bluestone National Park Resort is definitely somewhere we’ll holiday again. It has everything you need for the whole family to enjoy their stay to the full. Next time we stay, I’m determined to book myself into the spa for a little pamper and Hubs would love to go to the shindig down at Camp Smokey. We made some amazing family memories at Bluestone, it’s a holiday that will take some beating!

 

 

Take a sneek peek into life at Bluestone –

 

 

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When I Finally Realised that Things Really do Get Easier

When I Finally Realised that Things Really do Get Easier

Every now and again I look back into the archives of this little blog of mine. Sometimes I Iike what I read. Sometimes I’m a little embarrassed about the thoughts and feelings that I’ve had previously and a lot of the time looking back helps me to recognise just how far we’ve come. When I started The Tale of Mummyhood, I was the mother of a nine month old and I was heavily pregnant with baby number two. I had no idea where I wanted my blog to go, all I knew was that stay at home parenthood was tough and I needed an escape.

In the early days I spent so much time writing about how hard I found being a mum. I felt like my world had been rocked and that it would never be the same again. I hated it for so long, the sleepless nights and the endless anxiety during the day was so difficult to deal with. For a time, I honestly wondered why people had children. Why would they do that to themselves? It’s a complete and utter shock to the system.

I remember being told ‘it will get easier‘ time and time again. In fact, I was told it that often that I got sick of hearing it. Things didn’t feel like they would ever get easier. How could they? Parenting is exhausting and relentless, it’s definitely not what I would ever have described as being ‘easy’.

 

 

Things do get easier –

 

At the point of writing this, my eldest daughter is approaching 3 and my youngest is approaching 2. I’ve spent a little time tidying up my blog and I came across those old posts from when the littlest was born. I remembered how raw those feelings were when I wrote them, but do you know something? That time feels like a lifetime away. Although I can remember it being tough, the pain of those feelings has long passed.

I’m not saying that my children don’t push my buttons on a daily basis. I’m also not under any illusions that there aren’t going to be tough times ahead. This year marks a huge change for us as our eldest starts nursery and that’s sure to bring with it more challenges for us as a family. Day-to-day, life isn’t the struggle it once was though. The world doesn’t implode if the girls don’t get fed every four hours on the dot. Our days aren’t dictated by strict nap times, that would have us chained to the house for the middle part of every day. Days out don’t have to be planned with military precision and if we’re not home for the 7 pm bedtime routine, I don’t feel like I’ve been cheated out of my own time.

I wish I could pin point when this happened, but it’s just been a gradual process. Slowly getting easier over the past year. Life has just taken its natural course and it seems that we are already reaping the rewards from all of the hard work we have put into our girls so far. I hate to admit it, but these days I even find my self telling new parents that it gets easier.

Time flies so fast. It’s true when they say ‘the days are long, but the years are short‘. I suppose what I’m trying to say is that, if you have small children and you’re finding things tough. Then don’t beat yourself up for feeling the way that you do. Just take each hour or even minute as it comes, because as much as I don’t want to dismiss how you’re feeling now, you do need to know that it will get easier.

 

 

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Life Hacks – The Camping with Kids Edition

Life Hacks – The Camping with Kids Edition

*This post was written in collaboration with SimplyHike.co.uk.

 

Over the past couple of weeks, Hubs and I have set ourselves up with the ultimate camping kit. I decided on a whim that taking the kids camping would be a brilliant idea and still think it will be. In my rush to head off out into the wild though, I failed to fully consider just what camping with kids would entail. I’m a woman of routine and I do like my home comforts. In my haste to get our kit together, it didn’t occur to me that I would need all the tips I could get to make camping with kids as fun as possible!

 

Getting the right family tent –

After a little research, we decided that to make the whole experience as comfortable as possible then we would need to invest in the right tent. It would need to be big enough to fit in everything but the kitchen sink! It would also need to have a high waterproof rating and be strong enough to stand up to bad weather if we needed it too. With all of this in mind, we opted for the Coleman Mosedale 5 family tent. It has a huge living area, as well as two blackout bedrooms and we’re sure it’s the ideal home for our travels!

Coleman is a make that has been around for some time too. I’m always checking reviews on items before I buy them and this was no different. The reviews for the Mosedale 5 are really great, so many people said they’d made some amazing family memories in this tent and we want to be a part of that too. The best thing about this tent is that it’s so reasonably priced, perfect for families who need to get the whole camping set up without breaking the bank.

 

 

Getting the right equipment –

As well as the right tent, to make camping as family friendly as possible, I think it’s so important to get the right equipment. I did a little research through Simply Hike and I was gob smacked by how much high-tech camping equipment there is out there. We’ve invested in stoves, lanterns and so much more to make our tent a home from home. My absolute favourite piece of kit though is our cooler. It’s the ideal companion for any camping trip, perfect for keeping food and milk fresh all the time we’re away. We’ve even taken it on road trips, it’s ideal to keep drinks cool when you’re out on hot days!

 

 

Life hacks –

As much as having the right equipment makes for the perfect trip, there are many more hacks that you need to know if you’re going camping with kids. So to make your lives easier, as well as my own, I put it to my fellow bloggers to come up with the ultimate list of life hacks, the camping with kids edition!

Here’s what they had to say;

Sarah from Boo, Roo and Tigger Too: ‘Get shoe covers or old shower caps to pop over shoes as they come in and out of the tent to save getting mud/wet everywhere. As taking shoes on and off can be a pain, especially if you are the one who has to help each time’.

Nisbah from Five Adventurers: ‘Always set up the tent first at home before you go for the actual first camp! I have seen lots of families struggle with this. Always have loads of treats for camp fires.’

Janet from Falcondale Life: ‘We always buy a packet of glow sticks and use them as nightlights. We hang the big chunky ones inside the bedrooms. Outside we stick some garden solar lights in the ground so that there is no tripping over on the way to the loo in the dark.’

Louise from Pink Pear Bear: ‘Pack outfits rolled together (including pants and socks) so you can just grab an outfit for each child without having to rummage through the whole case. So much easier to just grab a roll and pass it to them to get themselves dressed knowing everything they need is there!’

Jennifer from My Mummy’s Pennies: ‘Take plenty of bin bags! They are super useful! Use them for muddy clothes or to put wellies on in the tent, even for sitting on wet grass.’

Claire from Wild Mama and Her Tribe: ‘Try a practice camp in the garden or locally to get used to the ‘its cold’ it’s dark’ ‘there’s a spider in my sleeping bag’ ‘it’s too lumpy’ ‘why are there no light switches’ – it’s a sanity saver.’

Fiona from A Mum Track Mind: ‘Camping with babies and toddlers can be hard work but what babies and toddlers are hard work full stop. They are also free-spirited, wild at heart and fascinated by the world around them, which are qualities that sadly we often lose as we get older. It’s best to switch your thinking from over-anxious parenting to a slightly more care-free style of parenting and let it go a bit. Rules, bedtimes and nagging can resume when you get home.’

 

A huge thankyou to all who made this post possible!

 

 

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Our Camping Adventures and Why we Love #VanLife!

Our Camping Adventures and Why we Love #VanLife!

*This post was written in collaboration with Sherwood Campers. 

 

This year, Hubs and I have decided to take our girls camping. As a well seasoned camper myself, I know it’s something our girls will absolutely love. I have so many good memories from the camping trips I’ve had over the years. We’ve stayed in everything from standard tents to trailer tents and from caravans to folding campers. You name it, we’ve had an adventure in it!

 

Matching campers!

Getting outdoors –

I’ve always loved spending time outdoors and now that our girls are getting a little older, they adore heading out to explore too. That’s why we’ve decided to make a real effort to get our girls out into the fresh air as much as possible! There are so many places that we want to visit in the UK, I’ve never visited Scotland so I think that will be first on our list. To tour such a vast area though, I think we’ll need to enlist the help of my parent’s VW camper! It has everything we need on board, to make the journey as fun and as comfortable as possible.

My parents have been VW lovers for quite some time, this isn’t the first camper they’ve had to go on holiday in. Over the years they’ve had a few different models, all of them offering a little something different to the whole camping experience. At one time they even looked into a VW camper specialist, to convert their VW into a unique living space. In fact, they love them that much, they bought the girls a miniature pink version too!

 

Peeking through the roof!

 

Why we love #VanLife  –

The beauty of holidaying in a camper van, is that your accommodation is on wheels. You can jump in and head to where ever takes your fancy, with all of your home comforts by your side. Inside is your very own space, to live and to make some amazing memories with your family. Both of our girls love to spend time in their grandparent’s camper, that’s why we knew they would love to go on holiday in it too!

Here are a few benefits of holidaying in a VW camper;

  • The roof pops up to expand your living space, providing you with a large bed. There’s also a safety net attached for the little ones!
  • They have so much storage, you’re sure to fit in everything you need to take with you.
  • Some even have toilets and cookers inside, meaning you can stay in the most remote areas and not have to worry about facilities.
  •  They have a table and chairs neatly hidden away. So you’ll always be able to eat in comfort on holiday, inside or outside of the camper.
  • You can attach canopy’s and awnings to the side of your camper, making your living space bigger when you’ve pitched up for the night.
  • They are a dream to drive, making your cruise around the country a total pleasure!

 

In the roof space!

Have you always wondered what it would be like to holiday in a VW Camper? You can follow our camping journey over on Instagram!

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HomeDNA at Home Genetic Testing Review – Healthy Weight

HomeDNA at Home Genetic Testing Review – Healthy Weight

*This post was written in collaboration with HomeDNA. 

 

A little while ago I was contacted by HomeDNA to try out their at home genetic testing kits. I’ve always been intrigued by these services and so I jumped at the chance to take the Healthy Weight test. Like many other women before me, I’ve always been conscious of my appearance and have spent many hours in the gym, trying to shed those ‘extra’ pounds. I was curious to find out how my body works and what I can do to aid staying at a healthy weight.

 

What did I have to do?

 

First of all, HomeDNA send out a test kit to complete at home and send back to them. The test kit comes with four swabs that you use to collect cells from the inside of both cheeks. It’s so easy to complete the swabs and all you have to do is seal them in the envelope provided, fill in all of your details and send them over to the lab for testing. This process is super simple, then all you have to do is sit back and wait for your results to arrive in your inbox!

Once your test has been analysed, you receive a report with detailed explanations into each area of your genetic makeup, in reference to maintaining a healthy weight. The report makes is really easy to understand the ins and outs of what is going on with your body and it also gives you pointers on what you can do to enhance your lifestyle, helping you to achieve a healthy weight!

 

An insight into my results –

 

The healthy weight test analyses four body traits;

  1. Weight loss ability.
  2. Food.
  3. Nutrients.
  4. Response to exercise.

As someone who has spent a hell of a lot of their adult life in the gym, the response to exercise sections was something I couldn’t wait to find out about. The test gives you an idea of the kinds of exercise that your body responds to, so that you can create the perfect exercise plan for you. I’ve also tried many diets over the years, so I thought it would be good to find out what foods are good for me personally, when it comes to maintaining a healthy weight.

When my results came back, I was pleased to read that my weight loss ability is ‘normal’, that means that there are no more excuses! So if I feel like I’m carrying a little extra weight, it’s because I need to watch the kinds of food that I’m eating. Not because my body isn’t functioning as it should. My weight fluctuates naturally and since I’ve had children I’ve found weight loss harder to achieve. From taking this test I’ve realised that my body hasn’t changed irreparably and I can’t blame having children for an increase in weight, it’s just about balancing things out to maintain my healthy weight.

I also learned from taking this test that my fat loss response to cardio is ‘low’. Now, most of my exercise regime is made up of different types of cardio. I swap and change my plan between the exercise bike, the treadmill and the cross trainer. These days I do this around 4 days out of 7. Actually according to my results, in order to notice a difference from cardio training I should be exercising 5 – 7 days a week at a moderate to high intensity and for a minimum of 300 minutes per week. This was a real eye-opener for me as I’ve often commented on not seeing results from exercise and it seems there may be a reason for that.

 

The verdict –

 

These are just a few of the results from my test, the ones that really jumped out at me and what I was most curious to find out about. The report itself is pages and pages long, this test really doesn’t leave any stone un-turned. I still find myself going back to my results, this helps me to make the appropriate changes to my lifestyle. Maintaining a healthy weight is something that always has and always will be important to me. Even more so now that I have two girls to keep fit and healthy for!

I’m so pleased I took the healthy weight test from HomeDNA and I’m even more impressed with how in-depth and informative my results are. There are other tests that HomeDNA do too, including ancestry tests. I’m pretty sure they’ve not seen the back of me!

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Three Ways to Make a Small Garden Work for the Whole Family

Three Ways to Make a Small Garden Work for the Whole Family

*This is a collaborative post.

 

Spring is my favourite season of the year. I love the light nights, the pretty flowers and the warmth! Spring always hold so much hope and it always feels so good to have a long summer ahead of us. Each year I spend the early spring sprucing up our garden, making sure that it’s clean and tidy and ready for spending our days outdoors. As we have quite a small garden, organising our space doesn’t take up too much time. What we do have to think about though, is how we can make the small space that we do have, work for each of us individually and as a family together.

Now that our girls are both on their feet, we just can’t get away without having outdoor toys for them to play with. From trampolines to slides, you name it we have it! Long gone are the baby days when a blanket and a few toys would suffice. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind the girls having toys out there, I want them to enjoy our garden too. Having said that, it’s nice to make sure we have an adult space outdoors. So that we can sit out in the evening and relax, or work which is much more likely! We also have two rabbits who love to spend time outdoors when the weather is fine, so we really do have a lot to squeeze in to a small space.

 

Here are three ways we make our small garden work for the whole family;

 

Have designated areas for each member of the family –

Even though our garden is small, we have designated areas for each of us. Granted the kids have most of the space and we do have a lot of brightly coloured plastic around the garden, but we make sure that each item has its own space. We have an area with patio furniture, which we use to relax in. You can find some great patio furniture deals from Groupon, there are pieces to suit every taste and garden size. This area also has a small BBQ in it too, so that Hubs and I can enjoy our evening meals outside on summer nights!

I love to see pretty flowers and I think it’s good to get the kids involved in a little gardening. So, we have a very small but neat garden area that we grow a few seasonal flowers in. This area benefits the whole family and when the flowers are in bloom, it draws your attention to them instead of the kids toys. Our bunnies have their own little space too, so when we’re all outside together everyone is happy!

 

Photo Credit

Be selective with what you keep in your garden, don’t over power your space with too much stuff –

I’ve already mentioned that we have a lot of kids toys in our garden and to be honest, we are on the brink of over powering it. These days, we have to stop and think about the things that we buy, so that we don’t add too many bits and bobs to an already small and crowded area. We make sure that the toys that we buy can be stored in the garden shed and when we recently bought a new table, we went for the smaller option to make sure it fit nicely in the space we have. It’s important to step back and look at what you have. If it feels like things are getting on top of you, then it’s probably time to have a clear out and get some garden back!

 

Photo Credit

Keep your outdoor space tidy –

This is by far the easiest way to make sure that your garden works for everyone that uses it. They say that an untidy house makes for an untidy mind and I’m sure this works when you head outdoors too! I always make sure that things are put back in their place at the end of the day, that way each area doesn’t encroach on another.

 

Photo Credit

 

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