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Saturday, 10 March 2018
I'm sure every parent can relate, sometimes getting out the door can be immensely challenging. Add another child and a dog to the equation - it can be a bit of a juggle. I often worry about having the work/life/family balance right. My to-do list is as big and chaotic as my laundry pile and I feel like the kids grow a month older every hour. Okay, slight over-exaggeration but I want to spend as much time as I possibly can playing and connecting with them while they are still pre-school age. I find the best way to make the hours in the day work for us is to make the most of the everyday chores and errands and inject a little bit of adventure where we can. This keeps the mum guilt at bay but also keeps life ticking over in order. Pretty much a win-win.

Due to our location, anything we do usually involves a car trip - whether it be the nursery run, grocery shop or even a walk with the dog. We rely on the convenience of our own transport to get the job done (& in all honesty if we didn't then I do NOT know how we would cope!). I've documented a few days in our life to show you that we are, like most, a very normal family doing regular things but always trying to make it the most fun & educational for the kids. 

Before I jump in, I want to thank Ford for collaborating with us on this post and lending us the lovely EcoSport Family car to use this week as we share our day-to-day with you. 


Fraser works shifts and my Mum is part-time, so where I can I like to take Ella to nursery on her own - just the two of us while Charlie is being watched. She thinks this is great, a real treat that it's her time. Our day usually always begins with a mad dash out the door - why is five minutes in the morning less time than five minutes the night before?! We have a laugh about her 'spinny' car seat and pretend she's on 'The Voice'. I have a playlist of all of Ella's favourite songs, and believe me, it's longer than playlists of my own! Once I've connected the phone to the car and get our music on it's time to sing our way to Nursery - yes, we are that family. The ones you see at the traffic lights belting out their best. It's great fun and keeps her entertained on boring trips plus I adore listening to her little voice attempting to hit the high notes, it makes me melt!

Pick up time is always lovely. There's really nothing nicer than when that classroom door opens and they run into your arms. Once we have shoes & jacket on, we usually count our steps, hop, skip or stomp our way back to the car which is another task - find where Mummy parked the car. It was a little trickier than usual as we are using the Ford EcoSport this week but she still managed to find it!



Now that we are approaching Spring and the nights are becoming lighter, we are trying to make the most of the evenings when Fraser comes home from work.

We tend to go a little road trip to take Lola out her interesting walks and are fortunate that we have some stunning places within a drive's reach. We love discovering new places and we vowed at the beginning of the year that we would spend more time discovering Scotland. Most of the trips require a bit of planning, organisation and in most cases time so the longer distance discoveries usually have to wait till the weekend. Until then, we tend to make our way to country parks locally or in this case we set off up the Campsie Hills just in time to watch the sunset. 

As a rule of thumb, family plans never go as intended - demonstrated beautifully by Ella who decided to opt out of the walk and napped instead. Not ones to be deterred by a minor change we parked up and had more of a stationary experience - ha! Lucky for us, Charlie can't yet walk so he was happy to bird watch from the comfort of my arm by the car. 

Lola also came out to stretch her legs for a while although to be fair I think she enjoyed the spacious car boot more! I love the way the door opens and closes in the EcoSport. I usually get the fear of bumping Lola's head as I close our own but this way is so much better. The rear window is low enough for her to do her nosey as we travel and she's also a part of the chat as she can see over the back seats.

When the sun set it was bitter cold, I've never been more grateful for a heated seat! We gave my Mum a call on the handsfree to instruct her to get the kettle on as we went to defrost and eat their biscuits for a visit. 



My three pieces of parenting advice are this :
  • Coffee
  • The art of distraction 
  • Involvement 
On that last point, this is the ONLY way I can get the food shopping done successfully (with a touch of the first and second points thrown in for good measure!) 

Her favourite thing to do in the supermarket is select nuts from the pick & mix station and use the scoops to fill her little bag. Of course, her snack of choice are the roasted almonds... The most expensive ones in the section so we pay the price for the good behaviour - a chocolate surprise egg now seems more appealing... and cheaper! In-between Ella's snack picking I frantically throw all the essentials we need into the basket, avoid the sweetie aisle and then we head to the check out. 

For us, having a big family car boot is an absolute must. If not for the dog, pram or sleepover trips to Nana's where they practically pack their entire rooms - then definitely for the food shopping. We did a relatively small shop dash today but believe me, if you watch my grocery hauls over on my channel then you know that my usual kitchen filler is plentiful! The average car would undoubtedly have shopping bag passengers on the seat no doubt setting off the seat belt alarm the entire way home which isn't annoying at all... but thankfully no issues with that here.



Everyone laughs because the thing I look forward to most when I'm having a break from Mum duties - whether it be a night out or something as simple as a child-free dentist appointment - is the conversations I can have start to finish without 'kidteruption' as I call it. Fraser & I barely get a chance to catch up with each other without having to meet the demands of our little loves mid-conversation, anyone else?! Some of the stories I want to tell him literally only last a minute real time but add 2 kiddies to the mix and I'm pretty sure I have been trying to tell that same story for over a week. That being said, we usually find the best way to get a good chat is to go a drive for coffee. OH YEAH! Living that wild parenting life! But seriously, those kids just love the sound of the car engine, the warmth of the heating and being cosy in their seats. This combo on an afternoon is sure to knock them for six making it the perfect time for Fraser and I to grab a hot one and have a gab. It seems the only shots we have these days are the extra espressos in our lattes but we wouldn't change a thing!


It's funny, we don't necessarily DO anything out of the ordinary - but I love how we make the ordinary something fun to do. The kids are our constant entertainment turning even the most normal of jobs into a story to be retold at the next family get-together. I think it's as simple as this. Having the ability to move and change the scenery for a while adds a freshness to the day/week/month but making sure we can do it altogether is what counts. It's so important to us to grow together, our dog included because we are a family. The five of us. And it's the most regular of things like a family car trip where we can go and enjoy new experiences together that our children will cherish as a memory. 'I had the best time playing my tablet all day long when I was 6' said no kid ever. Go adventure!

This is a paid partnership with Ford. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
  1. So many gorgeous pics! We are so lucky to have beautiful scenery like that in Scotland!

    Lovely post Ash.xx



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