White Roses. Do one.

You’re disrespectful, how can you not see that? You come to our daughter’s place of rest and make it obvious that you have been but think you can keep your anonymity and it not disturb us?

Yes, I’m talking about you…. anonymous white rose leaver, you’re an absolute disgrace, you’re an absolute arsehole and that’s putting it mildly.

If you’ve followed me for a few years, you might know that maybe 18 months ago, I had a rant about someone leaving white roses at Millie’s Resting Place and it stopped. Whoever it was, stopped leaving them.

The same bunch of white roses always turned up on or around special dates to do with Millie and I’m going to be honest, it wound the shit out of us.

The last time I talked about this, I said that it’s like someone going into Millie’s bedroom without permission but making it obvious they’ve been and some then waste of space told me that she was public property because she was buried in a public cemetery.

It doesn’t work like that … far from it.

This is our daughter’s resting place and we’ve never publicly said where it is. We know that some people know where she is buried because people have seen us there but we have just chosen, never to publicly mention it through our own personal choice.

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Don’t get us wrong, we love people visiting – but all our friends and family know to drop us a little text or leave a note to say that they’ve been, it comforts us. It comforts us that people still visit and that they let us know. We have random members of the public that often see Millie’s place and they might leave a little something or they message us through our Facebook pages and let us know that they’ve been and we love this; it’s lovely to hear this.

What’s not to love, is this.

The same insensitive person has once again turned up and left the white roses and not just on any old day, the day that Asher turned 9 months old (this is how old Millie was when we lost her) – coincidence? We think not.

Whoever it is (we’ve got an idea) … you’re creepy. You are so creepy because you make it obvious that you’ve been. It’s like you want us to know that the same person is back again and you do this by leaving the same white roses every time, like it’s a message. You’re strange and you’re gutless. If you want to express your sympathy, express it to us, Millie’s parents – not by hiding behind the same choice of flowers but making it obvious. Grow some.

And the flowers, ripped up and in the bin, yet again! Every time you leave them, they get torn up and stomped on and until you own up and tell us who you are, this will continue to happen, so stop wasting your bloody money trying to wind us up, it doesn’t work, we get angry and then laugh at you for not having the guts to admit who you are.

Rant Over.

Oh wait, no it’s not … let’s hope I don’t see you there …

Regards.

One Angry Mother & Father

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Kick Air

We were very lucky to be able to check out KickAir (an indoor freestyle park) in Manchester recently and I have to say, it exceeded my expectations.

This is the first time that we’ve taken Leo to anything like this and he loves trampolines, so I knew he would enjoy it!

We headed on over to reception where you sign the usual disclaimer at places like this and this is where you can purchase your socks for your visit.

To begin with, we took a look at the Kick Zone that is dedicated to football and even I loved it in there. We hit the Foot Pool , which is a brilliant game! It’s a fab one for the kids as Leo just ran around with the footballs trying to get them in the pockets (much more interesting than just playing pool with a cue)

Next up was the the Kick Darts which is a giant inflatable Dart board that you kick sticky footballs at! It takes some serious kicking strength to get them on the wall but we all managed it (even though Leo and I were a lot closer when we kicked our balls, it still counts)!

What we had come to see though was the newly launched Wall Jam which is an electronic game that scores you for how you play. I was totally rubbish at this but Dan seemed to get the hang of it.

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You’ve got this huge electronic wall in front of that lights up and you have to aim the ball at the lights, hit that and a new one will light up – you’ve got just 50 seconds to prove how good you are!

I of course, was THE worst at this which was inevitable as I am awful at kicking a ball but Dan did good and enjoyed it!

The last thing to do in the Kick Zone was my favourite (even though I was still awful) … RoboKeeper … an electronic goal keeper that works on sensors and is really hard to score against but what a workout you get trying to get passed him!

According to their website the KickZone has “footballing concepts used by the professionals and rarely seen by the public” – so if you have a football enthusiast in the family, it’s definitely worth a visit just for this area on it’s own .

We then headed on over to the Air Zone that includes Trampolines, Wipe Out, Airbags, Children’s Ninja Course, Battle Beams, performances trampolines, climbing walls and much more.

We only tested out the trampolines and the Airbags before we moved on because Leo (and mummy) loved the trampolines that much that we spent most of our time here.

If we’d have had more time to play, I would have loved to have gotten on the climbing wall as it looked fab!

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I also heard over the tannoy that they do adult parties! I reckon one of these might be in the planning soon, I love stuff like that and they have an Adult Ninja course that I will be returning to try out!

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The last little bit that the boys loved was the Little Kicks Area, a lovely little play area where Leo could run around at ridiculous speed throwing himself over and into padded obstacles whilst Asher chilled out in the ball pit! The play area was just the right size so you can keep an eye on where your child is, I’m not overly keen on these huge ones where your children just disappear, so this was the perfect size for us!

There is of course the standard food/drinks area where this is quite a large selection to choose from and a large clean area full of tables and chairs to relax on to have a break.

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The question is … would we go back?

Definitely

We absolutely loved it and I was thrilled that Leo loved it even more than we thought he would at his age (3). He didn’t know whether to run for the trampolines, play with the footballs or head to the play area as he was loving it so much! It’s a great place for kids of all ages so a fab place to head to if you’ve a wide range of children’s ages in your family or friendship group. If you are in the area, definitely head on over and take a look!

To find out more about prices and opening times – click here.

*No payment was given for this blog, we received free entry in exchange for an honest review.

If you would like me to review a product or place, please do get in touch by emailing samepersondifferentme@gmail.com contacting me on facebook or Instagram.

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How Not to … Build A Bear

One of the most memorable days of my boys’ lives so far I think … a visit to Build-A-Bear ... but not just any visit as today was “Pay Your Age Day” ….. an absolute bargain.

So the idea was that you could pick ANY soft toy in store and yes that includes all the film ones and only pay the price of how old your child is, in our case Ā£3 and Ā£1 (minimum was Ā£1) … what a cracking offer.

I’d told Dan about this earlier in the week and said “come with me, we won’t be there long” … famous last words I might add.

It is 2.30pm and we have just got home, we left at 8am! šŸ˜‚

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I thought getting there for 9am, it would be pretty quiet as a lot of people would have their children in school (I was very surprised to see children in school uniforms in the queue) … but how wrong was I! We hit the queue just before 9am and I reckon that we were about 100th in the queue .. so not too far back I thought… then the problems started.

We soon realised that the queue wasn’t moving very much at all. They were only letting a few people in the shop at a time which slowed things down. Obviously on top of that, the children spend time making decisions about which one that they want, then changing their mind (all part of being a toddler I might add) … then trying to convince Mum or Dad to let the soft toy have an outfit (more pennies) then having to give the bear a name on a computer and lastly actually getting the bears stuffed!

4 and a half hours … that is how long it took us in total from joining the queue to paying for the damn things! šŸ˜‚… I have to say that this was not one of mummy’s best ideas. I take full responsibility for making us have a day out at Build-A-Bear.

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The problem was as well, that after about an hour queue, Leo had spied the shop and said “going to the bear shop?” … so we couldn’t leave could we? Not a chance as he would have been really upset. The shop was so close but so far….

The local Greggs did a roaring trade this morning because there were lots of people in the queue eating sausage rolls and doughnuts for breakfast! Then a quick thinking staff member in WH Smith cottoned on (she certainly deserves staff member of the month) as she came out with baskets full of drinks and chocolates for sale – made a fortune selling to people in the queue – great idea! We took our brekkie with us …

The thing that bothered me the most in the queue … rude people. I couldn’t believe how many people “saved a space” for their friend that turned up 2 hours later …. for the record, it’s damn rude and an obnoxious thing to do when people have been queuing for so long.

I felt so sorry for the Arndale security staff as there weren’t enough of them for the amount of people that turned up and to be honest, Build-A-Bear should have had their own security on the door and the queue.

Turns out that many of the stores actually announced that they were closing and many stopped people from joining the queue anymore, this was for safety reasons

I’m not sure if they are even opening again today because of this, but I bet a lot of parents aren’t happy that they’d promised to take their children after school and now it looks like they might not be able to.

But … look at Leo’s face when we eventually got into the shop when he saw all the bears that he could choose from,big smile equals very happy.

To be honest, we got really lucky with both our boys today. They were both really well behaved, Leo only had a 5 minute moment and Asher had a cry as we were waiting to stuff the bears and then he fell asleep (so totally missed the whole stuffing of the bear, placing a heart and making a wish šŸ˜‚) … and Leo didn’t like the noise that the machine made, so hid behind us when the bears were coming alive!

Check out the ones we got though … they should have cost us Ā£54 in total and today they only cost us Ā£4 …. yes that is correct, Ā£4 for the both of them including Chewbacca! There were hardly any of those left in the shop, good spot by Dan!

It was a really good promotion of Build-A-Bear but I think some heads might be rolling at head office because of the chaos in stores throughout the country before.

Here are my tips Build-A-Bear for your next event;

1. Registration online so you get a ticket number and an allocation time.

2. Offer pre-made bears (yes, I know that the magic is in the stuffing and adding a heart but for most under 3s, they don’t get it or quickly lose interest)

3. You needed more staff stuffing the bears, you needed temporary machines. The staff at the store that we were in took about 5- 10 minutes to stuff each bear and sew them up, that means on average about 20/25 bears an hour were being completed. This was just not fast enough for how many people were coming through the doors and how many people were outside queuing.

4.You could have done with a ticket system for toilet visits. Remember, there were sooo many young children with their parents and people were scared to leave in case they lost their place. The nearest toilets to the store we at were a 15 minute journey there and back if you were quick.

5. Water could have been offered to the queues, a really simple cheap solution to keeping your crowds a little bit happier.

So, rumour has it that the promotion is linked to the launch of “Count Your Candles” in the UK where you will be able to pay the price of the age of your child in their birthday month for a bear. Check the American version out here … I’m not sure of the terms and conditions coming with the offer but it might be worth registering on their website for especially if you can get a cheap gift for their birthday, I think it’s a great idea.

So, would I do it again?

Would I queue again for that long? You know what, yes I would!

I bet that you thought that I was going to say no then, didn’t you!

The reason that I’ve said Yes is because what memories it created today and all you need to do is look at this photo of Leo smiling …

And also look at this one of daddy and Leo, they had both definitely had enough by this point though …

And Asher checking his purchase out too …

I’m not sure what Daddy would say though, I think he was slowly being driven insane throughout this adventure … although I am also sure that when he looks back and remembers this day, he will be laughing … and I have warned him that we will more than likely be queuing again at some point in their lives for something that they want so much … all part of parenting xxx

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This weekend Millie’s Daddy Dan is doing a sky dive in her memory.

He is extremely nervous, if you have a few pennies to donate please drop him a text donation by texting DSKY01 Ā£3 to 7000

Nearly there again

You know when something is driving you completely crazy and you just cannot get it out of your mind? I’m feeling a little like that at the moment and the emotions my head are going through are absolutely heartbreaking.

Asher is 8 months old

Millie passed away at 9 months.

This is totally messing with me at the moment. I keep spontaneously bursting into tears at random reminders.

I struggled a lot when Leo was the same age but this time I have realised that I am struggling even more and I think that it might be because Asher looks so much more like Millie than Leo ever did.

Sometimes I look at him and it’s like having Millie sat in front of me, it’s the strangest feeling ever.

Millie was 286 days old when she passed away… we just need to get passed that many days and I know I will start to feel a little better. I know exactly what date Asher’s 287th day will be; I know, I sound like a crazy lady but I worked it out when he was born and then haven’t really thought about it until he turned 8 months old a couple of weeks ago.

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I know it sounds ridiculous but it’s like a barrier for me, a wall that I need to break us through.

I think I’m doing okay and then something starts to niggle at me and I can’t work it out. Then bang, there it is – the answer that has taken me a while to figure out and this is what has happened over the last few days, it’s hit me like a brick wall.

I’ve gotten through these feelings and mixed up emotions once before with Leo – this time, I can see that there will be a positive outcome at the end and I’m glad that this time I can see past that date.

I’d love to know your feelings about how you dealt with this with your children, how you got passed that milestone with your younger children when an older child had passed away, maybe I won’t feel as nuts as I do reading about your journeys xxx

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Would you like you child to learn basic life saving skills in Stockport? Take a look here to see what’s coming up for them in the school holidays.

Iā€™m still going

So I carried on with the training that I started with That Squatbot back in March.

Take a look here for how I got started and what I originally thought and here for an update at week 4.

I’m now just about completing cycle 2 and I can honestly truly say that I am still loving it and I am so very surprised at that. Not because it’s exercise but because it’s a different type of exercise that I’d never done before.

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I like being a bit of a loner (or like my own company if it sounds better that way) šŸ˜‚! So for me to agree to work with a personal trainer took some persuading to myself, but it’s honestly one of the best decisions that I’ve made. I often like to just put my headphones on and go to the gym or on the running machine and not speak to another soul in the gym and then leave, but working out with That Squatbot has been so much more different than I anticipated.

She has been giving me so much encouragement, providing me with lots of advice of what better things to eat, how to perfect different exercise techniques and has generally become a friend!

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We train at a gym in Heald Green and the other trainers and visitors are all so friendly. I was a little apprehensive in the beginning as I thought it felt like a real serious gym goers gym with all these weird and wonderful machines but after a couple of sessions, it didn’t feel like that anymore.

And oh my I missed it … true sign of an addiction… Dan had his tonsils out a couple of weeks ago but then unfortunately ended up having a further emergency operation which meant between the kids, work and looking after a poorly husband, I couldn’t get to my own gym or to see Squatbot and I began to crave it. Not just for the physical side of it but for the mental health side of it. I needed to let some steam off and the gym has become my place to this! (Ask That Squatbot about our boxing sessions šŸ˜‚ #sorrynotsorry)

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Thankfully Dan is nearly back to normal now and my mum came over to help this week during half term so I managed to get there a couple of times and I’m now booked in for a full new cycle with That Squatbot and I cannot wait.

I haven’t weighed or measured myself for a couple of weeks as I lost my good earring habits whilst Dan has been ill but I’m getting back into it again. But all my maternity clothes are now away (yay!) and a lot of my clothes are starting to fit better – my aim was the 9 months on, 9 months off cycle and Asher has just recently hit 7 months old so I am totally on track and I cannot wait to hit my target if things go to plan!

The 9 month on/9 month off theory I think is a very sensible train of thought after having a baby. In those first few months, you don’t have time for yourself, you really don’t; not unless you have a lot of help around you to give you that free time and we don’t and with having two boys at home now, it was even harder this time than it was after Millie & Leo but I’m getting there.

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It’s not just about weight loss though for me, I’m not interested in the scales anymore (which is a bad habit that I have gotten rid of) it is about toning, my clothes fitting much better, my mental health and getting stronger. I feel so much stronger in what really is just a short space of time. I love not struggling to pick my children up anymore – and often both of them together because my arms weren’t strong enough and my back pain from pregnancy was still causing me issues. Weight Training has really helped me develop a stronger core, improve my posture and improved my back pain and I am genuinely so glad that I started this new challenge.

That Squatbot has also managed to convince me to aim for a further challenge and enter a competition in November with her! Eek, I agreed and I’m sure it will be fun but I’ll need to be working hard for this with her. This one isn’t about winning anything for me, this is about challenging myself to do something like this and I’ve never competed like this for anything before. Training for this alongside training for the Yorkshire Three Peaks that I am taking part in, in September this year for Millie’s Trust should hopefully see me hit my 9 month target!

As a Mum in her thirties, I often feel like I’m a bit lost. I was feeling like I was just working and being a mum and wife and I had nothing for myself, nothing to do for me, nothing to call mine. Now I do and it’s not only benefited me but it’s benefitted my family as I am a much better place mentally and even having to get up in the mornings for my early sessions (I love early mornings) has meant that my day is longer and I get more done, I’ve created those extra hours that I so badly needed.

Fancy joining me on the Yorkshire Three Peaks Walk in September – click here for details

That’s a wrap for now! But if you’re local and fancy a session with That Squatbot, give her a shout here on Facebook or catch her on Instagram.

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Tears

I know that being a parent is hard, it is really hard at times and I know that you can tear your hair out when you child does something you don’t like, so I’m not saying to be the perfect parent.

Even after losing Millie, we still have to tell Leo off and shout at him or we know that he could turn into a total brat. He does have me wrapped around his little finger but it doesn’t mean that he gets away with being naughty or hurting people (or the dog for the matter), we have to tell him off, we know that.

I don’t judge other parents because we all have our own parenting ways that work for us but yesterday I was disgusted and it hurt even more because we had just visited Millie’s resting place and had a full on spring clean there. (Check out Leo rocking his underpants, it was just too hot for him and he was slathered in sun cream – which of course he had a meltdown whilst I put it on him šŸ˜‚).

Anyway, back to my disgust.

I witnessed a Mum shouting at a little girl yesterday in a supermarket who was probably around the age of what Millie should be now. The mum was absolutely swearing her head off at this poor child and telling her to “not to f***n come near her again today” and “to get out of her f***n way” … I was absolutely gobsmacked and even if I wasn’t a Mum who had lost a child, I am sure that I would have thought the same.

I really wanted to say something but this woman was so angry, she could have gone for me or taken it out on the child and I wouldn’t have wanted that. I was in such shock, I dropped the Ā£20 I had in my hand (which I didn’t notice until I got to the till and I haven’t seen it for dust since) and had to walk away to get myself out of the way. I went to pay (with my debit card now) and left the shop, got in my car and cried.

I cried that I had just saw this poor girl be spoken to like this.

I cried because I had just come from visiting Millie at her resting place and I can’t put my arms around her anymore.

I cried because I was so sad that this mum didn’t know what she had and how special her daughter is and that she is privileged to be able to kiss her daughter goodnight.

I’m not having a preach here saying that you shouldn’t shout at your children or discipline them but this little girl, do you want to know what she had done?

Accidentally stood on her mum’s toe.

It was an accident, she didn’t deserve to have her mum shout and swear at her like that … just my thoughts xxx

Millie’s Trust are looking for people to join our team to do the Yorkshire Three Peaks in September (I will be doing it too šŸ˜€) contact us here to get more details or to register

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Loving the snow!

I know a lot of people don’t like the snow because it disrupts the work/school day but I love it. I always have. I know you might think that I’m odd, I love the cold wintry days and can’t wait for snowy days to come every year – and they don’t, they just never come.

The last time that we got snow like this was just as I got together with Dan, my husband – that was 8 years ago, I had to cancel a date because I was snowed in. šŸ˜‚

There are so many things that I want to do with my children, so many things that I want to show them. My love for snow is one of the things that I want them to see.

Something so simple, so free and so fun. I hope they grow up to love it like I do and love playing in the snow together as they get older.

But it’s one of the things that I never got to show Millie, it’s one thing that she never got to see – and that hurts. The pain that hits me when I teach or show my other children things that I never got to with Millie, is indescribable, there are just no words for it … I could try to describe it but there there are just none that I can think of that can communicate the feeling and the thoughts strong enough.

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So that’s why this morning, at 7.30am – when I had been waiting for an hour (I’m surprised that I lasted that long to be honest, I was like an excited child when I opened the curtains) for him to get up, I went in and poked Leo and told him that we could go and play in the snow! (Yes Dan, I woke him up – and I’m not sorry šŸ˜˜, love you šŸ˜˜)

Before Dan had even finished his shower, I had Leo up, dressed, fed with his wellies, all-in-one and coat on! I don’t think Dan knew what was going on – or he thought that I had gone a little mad!

But look how excited his little face was šŸ’™šŸ’™šŸ’™

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Dan’s breakfast was ready for him and then I sorted myself out for the weather outside and Dan and Asher were soon ready for the snow too šŸ˜‹.

Within a few minutes, we were out in the white stuff and watching Leo’s face brought tears to my eyes and I couldn’t stop thinking that I hope that Millie is sat on her cloud watching us and laughing at us, being cheeky and throwing some extra snow down for us.

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(I bought the sledge weeks ago, the last time that we were supposed to get good snow – and we got none!)

I totally know full well that I annoy people on social media when it snows, I annoy all those people that end up late for work or school, the ones that are wet when they get to work and the ones that only like the sun and heat … but am I sorry?

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Nope, not one little bit – because I get to show my children something that I love … and something that still actually makes mummy truly smile … which only a few things do nowadays. So if the snow allows my children to have lovely memories and photographs of mummy smiling through their childhood – bring it on šŸ’•šŸ’•šŸ’•.

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Why not purchase a Millie’s Trust hoodie to keep you warm in this cold weather – click here to purchase x