A Little Photo Book Magic from Ella’s Books

What I’m about to tell you is a true story – and while parts of this tome may ring true with families across the world, there’s a happy ending and a solution to this universal problem. Intrigued? Read on!

It was back in August when I received a delightful (that’s not a word I use lightly in 2017, so trust me when I use it!) email from Ella of Ella’s Books. Sat on Brighton beach, in the summer sun, watching the boys throwing stones out to sea (not at each other for change, which made this moment particularly blissful!), I read Ella’s invitation to have one of her bespoke photo books made using our family photos. Now, let me tell you – as a family blogger with a shed load a kids, I get a lot of offers for photo books, none of which have tickled my pickle in the slightest – they’re glossy, mass printed, badly bound tripe (sorry, I feel strongly about this, can you tell?); but from the moment I clicked through to Ella’s Books site I could see and feel the difference. The attention to detail, the care she pours into every book and the personal touches – really make a huge difference. So, I said “yes” within a matter of minutes.

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Meet The Jams | The Financial Truth

I’d be fibbing if I said The Mumsnet thread hadn’t rocked my somewhat rainbow hued boat; or, at least temporarily punctured my Instagram-bubble of confidence in people’s kindness. I’d managed to learn from its well-hidden teaching with regards to a layperson’s understanding of all the garb surrounding #ad or #gifted and adjust my posts to ensure no one was left unclear as to whether money had changed hands, I’d been sent a freebie or if it required #Ipayforshittoo! I’d taken the constructive feedback and managed to move on to a more positive place, until the subtext of that thread was thrust back in my path amongst the comments on my instagram, similar to a mouthful-of-Weetabix sneeze coming your way – it was unexpected, a bit grainy and not wholly welcome.

It was a well-meaning comment on an average Instagram post; the image is irrelevant to this tome, but the comment, in part, tickled my goat again.  It’s the perception that ALL “insta-mums” are “well-off/middle-class” and occasionally flouted as “elitist” that irks my tits.

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Green Velvet Dreams (The Sequel) | The Armchair

It’s been referred to as “the hole of doom” – it’s the place from which the din of Youtube rings, sofa wrestling settles remote-based disputes and a space that style (and I) forgot; it’s our lounge. Since our mammoth extensions were ‘finished’ (I use that word very loosely!), the lounge has become somewhere to assemble rowdy tweens for giant sleepovers, chuck/hide all Casper’s brightly coloured, plastic tat and very occasionally retire to once all the kids have gone to bed (that’s between 9.30pm and when I doze off 5 minutes later!). It’s been promised a plywood barn sliding door, a dramatic colour splash and layered rugs to make a Persian prince envious – but so far, I’ve failed to deliver on its style makeover.

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Feeding Boys with HelloFresh Family Box | #Ad

I’m not going to pretend we, as a family, have a gold-star culinary repertoire. While we don’t have any vegetarians, vegans, pescatarians, macro-biotics, gluten/dairy intolerants, sugar free or raw only eaters, what we lack in marvelously millennial food-groups we make up for in fussy eaters!

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Shiz We Loved | October | #2

Well, slap my thigh and call me fanny – if I’m not mistaken, this is the second “Shiz We Loved” blog – which is getting a little close to commitment for my liking, and if not, at the very least it’s turning into a habit! But you might notice I’m screeching in a couple (ahem) of days behind schedule; partly thanks to that parental-time f**k, known as half-term and we were busy celebrating Hugo’s birthday. I pretty much blinked and missed October.

So, without further ado, here’s the most loved, useful, cherished and note-worthy from October; whether it’s been bought, gifted, found or made – either way, there’ most definitely no buying your way onto this list!

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