Post Comment Love 15th - 17th November

It's time for Post Comment Love - our little linky hosted by myself and Stephanie. We welcome all bloggers to share their posts with others and read what interests them. The linky opens every Friday and is open throughout the weekend. Will you be joining us?

It's funny how freeing it is to have decided to say goodbye to blogging - I moved to blogging back in 2012 when I was trying to write a book and thought having a blog would be a good way to get the book noticed. What happened was blogging took over, and at the time I thought it was a good move. I've spent years chasing views, wondering why I wasn't getting the thousands of views that other bloggers were, and feeling like I wasn't trying hard enough. In the end I realise that it's partly because I refuse to put more hours into it. I would much rather spend the time with my family than spend every waking moment trying to get my posts 'out there'.

Now I know that's not how every blogger does it, and to be honest I'm not even criticising those that do. If that's how you like to work then great - but it's not for me. And in the end that's what led me to decide to give up on blogging. I don't want to be chasing the views, to be searching for companies to work with so I can make a little money from this little thing. I can now concentrate on my family, and more importantly finish my novel. I feel so good writing creatively again and given that it's been a life-long dream of mine to write a book then I figure I'm making the right choice.

We're working on finding a co-host to work with Stephanie and we have someone in mind, we'll be in touch with them soon. And then hopefully you'll have a smooth transition when it comes to switching over. I'll be sticking around for one more week, next week will be my last PoCoLo and honestly I'll be sad to let go. It's been a pleasure hosting every week. So, for now I'll sign off and save my proper "goodbyes" for next week.




Pocolo


Each week you'll be able to link up from either of our sites and between us Stephanie and I will comment on every post linked.

The rules; Link up your best post written in the last week and we'd like you to comment on at least two other linked posts, as well as the hosts. 

Help us spread the #PoCoLo word on Twitter and include the badge on your post.

Please do pop over and say hi to this week's Blogger Showcase. It's always nice to get a comment or two. 

If you'd like to be featured in our Blogger Showcase please do check out the questions and email your answers to us at postcommentlove@gmail.com.

Thank you for popping by.


Post Comment Love


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Post Comment Love 8th - 10th November

It's Friday again and that means it's time for Post Comment Love Our linky, hosted by myself and Stephanie, welcomes all bloggers to share their posts with others and read what interests them. The linky opens every Friday and is open throughout the weekend. Will you be joining us?

It's been another slow week - which is nice at the moment. It's nice to have slow weeks sometimes. Hubby and I had lunch together yesterday, it was great to get together during the working day while the kids were at school - even if it was raining!

We're already back into normal routine after half term, it certainly didn't take long for us to settle in a  good routine. It is quiet being at home all day without anyone to talk to but it's something I've gotten used to. I do enjoy the quiet but I think I need to start going out a bit to speak to people, even if it's just the supermarket. I spend far too much time staring at a screen and that can't be good for me. Maybe a trip out to grab a coffee or a sandwich at lunchtime might do me good.

We're still looking for my replacement as co-host for Post Comment Love. If you're interested get in touch and let us know.



Pocolo


Each week you'll be able to link up from either of our sites and between us Stephanie and I will comment on every post linked.

The rules; Link up your best post written in the last week and we'd like you to comment on at least two other linked posts, as well as the hosts. 

Help us spread the #PoCoLo word on Twitter and include the badge on your post.

Please do pop over and say hi to this week's Blogger Showcase. It's always nice to get a comment or two. 

If you'd like to be featured in our Blogger Showcase please do check out the questions and email your answers to us at postcommentlove@gmail.com.

Thank you for popping by.


Post Comment Love


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Post Comment Love 1st - 3rd November

It's time for Post Comment Love - our little linky hosted by myself and Stephanie. We welcome all bloggers to share their posts with others and read what interests them in the hope you find a new love. The linky opens every Friday and is open throughout the weekend - will you be joining us?

So I'm almost at the end of half term and I think we've done okay. We haven't been on a lot of outings but we have enjoyed staying at home and playing board games and video games. It's been nice to not have to think about the school routine and having Hubby at home some of the time too has been great. The boys are back at school on Monday and it'll back to a normal routine again.

After some serious thinking and introspection I have decided it's time for me to step back from blogging. I've been blogging since 2011 and in that time I've made some lovely friends and met some wonderful people. I have written thousands upon thousands of words and shared our life online. But these days I think it's become more about sharing the exceptional, whether that's something that has happened to you, something you're campaigning for, or just to "strive to be your best self". And that's really not me. As a blogger you have to spend so much time on social media that there's little time left for anything else. I was never in it for the big views or the hope that I'd make a million. But that seems to be what it's all about - bringing in the views so you can make money. And to be honest I'd rather be writing.

So where does that leave our little linky? Well we're now on the search for someone to replace me as co-host for Post Comment Love. We think co-hosting works really well as you can share the workload and it's a fun, collaborative thing to enjoy. So if you're interested in becoming a co-host for Post Comment Love let us know! You can message either me or Stephanie on Twitter or simply send us an email. I'd love to see our little linky continue (I may be stopping blogging but I won't stop reading!) so don't hesitate to get in touch. If you've ever thought about getting into hosting linkies this may be your opportunity!

I will be sticking around for the time being as co-host for Post Comment Love until we've found a replacement. So don't forget to link up!



Pocolo


Each week you'll be able to link up from either of our sites and between us Stephanie and I will comment on every post linked.

The rules; Link up your best post written in the last week and we'd like you to comment on at least two other linked posts, as well as the hosts. 

Help us spread the #PoCoLo word on Twitter and include the badge on your post.

Please do pop over and say hi to this week's Blogger Showcase. It's always nice to get a comment or two. 

If you'd like to be featured in our Blogger Showcase please do check out the questions and email your answers to us at postcommentlove@gmail.com.

Thank you for popping by.


Post Comment Love


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What is self-care for stay-at-home mums?

As a stay-at-home mum you spend all your time looking after others, but how much time do you spend taking care of yourself? Self-care for stay-at-home mums always seems like one of those things you'll get done "one day" doesn't it? There's just so much other stuff to get done that self-care is probably last on your list. In fact, what is self-care for stay-at-home mums? Well that's why I'm here today, read on to find out how you can take care of yourself while still taking care of your family.



The importance of self-care for stay-at-home mums




When you spend your days taking care of others it's easy to just keep going, even when you don't feel like yourself. You fill the washing machine, wash the dishes, clean the countertops, and tidy up the kids toys without a thought for yourself. You make sure the kids are sent off to school with packed lunches (or sorted for school lunch), and you buy all the things you need to make a wonderful dinner for the family. And then you start on the daily chores.


What Is Self-Care For Stay-At-Home Mums? | Forget the chores and concentrate on yourself for a change.



But, making time for self-care - giving yourself a time out - does wonders. Just the fact that you're thinking about no one but yourself can give you some relief from stress. It may sound selfish, but sometimes that's what you need. No matter what activity you choose to do the act of giving yourself some time instantly makes you feel better. And what's more, if you plan the self-care time you can even get excited about it before hand.

Why not listen to a few of these TED talks to learn about the importance of self-care.





When the well is dry, we know the worth of water.

Benjamin Franklin





So why is self-care so important?




Gives you a break from stress - whether it's the kids driving you nuts, too much laundry to get through (hello washing mountain!), or simply the day-to-day tasks of being a stay-at-home mum, the stresses can get you down. By taking a break from all that you're giving yourself a little relief and stepping away from the stress. You will feel lighter, and maybe even be able to cope with more as a result.

Time alone - Do you ever get any time alone? When was the last time you read a book? Or had a bath uninterrupted? I'm lucky to go to the toilet without interruptions and my boys are 10 and 14 - if your kids are younger I can imagine the interruptions are numerous. Getting that time alone is so important, it can help you organise your thoughts, it helps you calm yourself. Just stepping away from the to-do list and the needs of everyone else, and focussing on self-care, will make you happier.


What Is Self-Care For Stay-At-Home Mums? | Sit and drink a coffee alone. Get some peace.



Soothe yourself - Self-care is another way to soothe yourself. You can use a hot bath and relax for a while, or book yourself a spa day and enjoy a massage. Whatever you choose to do it's that soothing feeling that will make you feel so much better. It's a healing activity and when you're bogged down with to-do-lists and kids' needs it can feel like the weight is too much. By giving yourself time to heal, soothing time, you will feel 100 times better.

Inner happiness - This isn't the happiness you feel when someone asks you if you're happy, this is the inner glow, that thing that makes you smile inside. Self-care gives you that. And as the saying goes "Happy mums raise happy kids" - so why not make yourself happy?



Self-care tips for stay-at-home mums




  • Set time aside. Carve out some time during the day for yourself. It could be 30 minutes to read a chapter of your book, or it could be just 5 minutes to enjoy a hot coffee, but make sure to get a little time for yourself. Let the family know the time is for yourself and you're not to be disturbed. Let yourself indulge. Like Katrina over at Rule This Roost says "schedule it and follow through with it".


  • Spend time with friends. If you have young kids and a Hubby who works it can be difficult to set time aside so why not spend time with friends instead? If they have kids too you could take the kids to the local play centre and enjoy a coffee and a chat while the kids play. Chatting to friends about things that are bothering you, or just having a little laugh, will make you feel better and you'll smile.

What Is Self-Care For Stay-At-Home Mums? | Meet up with friends for a laugh, and some self-care.



  • Plan an exercise routine. Get up an hour earlier than everyone else and go for a walk (or a run if you like!). Once the kids are in bed head to the gym and run off that stress. Or find a local yoga class and take the hour for yourself. Exercise is a great way of adding self-care into your day, and while it may feel weird to start with you really are looking after yourself by being active. I recently started attending a yoga class on a Saturday morning and I feel so much better for it. It's not helping with the weight loss but it definitely makes me feel good. 


  • Engage in non-baby/kids related things. When your life revolves around your kids you can end up losing yourself. You forget who you were before you had kids and it's difficult to think of things to do when you're not being "mum". That's why doing non-baby related things is important. If you like reading pick up a fiction book - I'm loving Solitude right now. Step outside of your own world and into the fictional world. Have a hobby you used to love? Get back to it. Remembering who you were before you had kids will make you happy - and give you the break you need.





If you are to be a light for those you love, you must find ways to nourish yourself, to feed your fire and keep it burning.

Seed & Song






  • Shower. It's amazing the difference a nice long shower can make. I will often stand under the hot water and smile as I let the water flow over me. There is something particularly enjoyable about a long shower and when you get out and put on your favourite perfume or spray too it makes you feel a whole lot better. Washing your hair, styling it even, will make you smile too.


  • Dress nicely. If you get up every day and wear pyjamas and a dressing gown all day you're going to start to feel bad. If you wear the same things every day you'll end up in a style rut and start to feel bad about yourself. Instead of getting yourself in a rut take a moment to look at your wardrobe and pull out an outfit you love. It doesn't matter if it's for "going out-out" or just for hanging around the house, if it makes you smile - wear it! I have a lovely friend, Renee from Mummy Style, who helped me recently and she told me something I'll never forget - "dress the body you have, right now". And if you're struggling to find anything you love in your wardrobe check out Renee's Mummy Style Experience which includes a Wardrobe Cleanse and then she'll send you a gorgeous lookbook where she suggests clothes you'll love. She helped me with my wardrobe recently and now I love getting dressed every day - I even bought a new dress that I'll actually wear!

What Is Self-Care For Stay-At-Home Mums? | When was the last time you went shopping?
When was the last time you went shopping?


  • Resist the urge to clean. I know the feeling, you're sitting on the sofa having just finished your coffee and you're thinking "I really ought to vacuum the carpet" or "there's a load of laundry that needs doing". Then you get up and get on with the chores, forgetting you're supposed to be taking care of yourself. Self-care is about taking care of YOU, not making sure the cleaning has been done. Do your best to ignore the cleaning and enjoy a little time for yourself.


  • Don't feel guilty. This is one of the hardest things to master, especially when you're new to taking time for self-care. As a stay-at-home mum taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of your family. Having a shower is not something you should feel guilty about. Wanting to read a book is not something you should feel guilty about. And wanting to enjoy a hot coffee in a morning is definitely not something you should feel guilty about. Allow yourself that time - guilt free.

What Is Self-Care For Stay-At-Home Mums? | Self-care - not something we ever think about, but maybe you should.



Self-care for stay-at-home mums is just as important as taking care of your family and getting the household chores done. Isn't it about time you scheduled time for self-care, the same as you do for the chores?



How would you spend your self-care time?




Become an Organised Mama and you'll have time for all the self-care you want! Grab the Organised Mama Pack, it has chores lists, a daily planner, and even a chores list for your kids (for you to fill in).



Post Comment Love 25th - 27th October

Are you ready for Post Comment Love? It's Friday so that means it's time for our little linky hosted by myself and Stephanie. We welcome all bloggers to share their posts with others and read what interests them. Will you be joining us?

Just a quick one from me this week as I've got the boys home for half term. It's been both a busy and an easy week this week. With Hubby at work, but the kids at home, I've been keeping busy by occupying them but I don't have to think about packed lunches and school schedules - which is a nice break.

One more week to go then they're back at school. And then before you know it it'll be Christmas! Eek! I can't believe I just said that!

Better get thinking about Christmas shopping...



Pocolo


Each week you'll be able to link up from either of our sites and between us Stephanie and I will comment on every post linked.

The rules; Link up your best post written in the last week and we'd like you to comment on at least two other linked posts, as well as the hosts. 

Help us spread the #PoCoLo word on Twitter and include the badge on your post.

Please do pop over and say hi to this week's Blogger Showcase. It's always nice to get a comment or two. 

If you'd like to be featured in our Blogger Showcase please do check out the questions and email your answers to us at postcommentlove@gmail.com.

Thank you for popping by.


Post Comment Love


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5 Top Reasons To Drive With Winter Tyres

Every year, as winter rears its ugly head drivers in the UK prepare themselves for the possibility of snow and ice. We buy de-icer for the windscreens, and we start the car 10 minutes before we have to leave. But how many of us think about changing our tyres for the winter? Here's 5 top reasons you should drive with winter tyres this year.



Why should you change tyres for the winter?


Okay, so thinking about changing tyres for the winter may be a bit of a pain. It may be more hassle than it's worth right? But there are real differences when it comes to driving with winter tyres, which I will cover below, but the main point is they keep you safe. With the holiday season approaching isn't worth considering?



5 Top Reasons To Drive With Winter Tyres | Buy winter tyres and stay safe this winter.



Better performance at low temperatures


The type of rubber used in winter tyres is different to that in regular tyres, and it performs better at low temperatures. The winter tyres don't harden in lower temperatures, which means better grip. This is obviously what you're looking for when it comes to winter driving. With snow, ice, or even just rainy roads in the cold you want to have the safest drive possible. 



Improved braking distances


With better grip comes improved braking distances - even in snow or ice. I remember roughly 10 years ago the winter was tough, it snowed - a lot. The roads were covered, lots of cars had trouble getting around, and one particular evening the Hubby and I went out and had some trouble of our own. As we drove around a corner the car slid and almost hit a tree - it scared me a lot and it made me realise how different it is driving in the winter. If anything can help with braking distances I'm for it.





Let us love winter, for it is the spring of genius.

Pietro Aretino





Superior traction


Snowy roads are slippy, icy roads are worse, so something that could give your car superior traction is worth thinking about right? Driving with winter tyres will improve your traction on the road, they were made for the colder temperatures.



5 Top Reasons To Drive With Winter Tyres | Snow doesn't have to be scary - buy winter tyres and you can stay safe.



Fuel efficiency


We're all looking for ways to be more economical when it comes to our fuel efficiency and driving with winter tyres will help with that. Because the winter tyres were made for the lower temperatures during the winter your car is more economical when compared to driving with regular tyres.





To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold.

Aristotle





Be safe


If there's one thing you should absolutely consider when deciding whether to drive with winter tyres this winter it's safety. With better performance at low temperatures, improved braking distances, and superior traction, it's fairly obvious that winter tyres are the safer choice. 


If my top 5 reasons to drive with winter tyres has convinced you you need some visit DAT tyres and book your winter tyres today!



Have you ever considered driving with winter tyres?


Collaborative post

7 ways to de-stress this half term

Half term is just around the corner and we all know how stressful half term can be. With trying to find activities for them to do as well as dealing with their constant requests we are put on edge and they slowly drive us crazy. For this time half term why not spend a little time thinking about yourself too - here's 7 ways to de-stress.



Play Centres


Back when your little ones were stumbling around, toddling about the house and getting into everything, you dreaded going to the play centre didn't you? Having to spend time climbing up those uncomfortable stairs with your little one, trying to show them not to be afraid walking over the wobbly bridge despite being terrified yourself. It was an hour that zapped your energy and sent you crying to the bathroom whenever the request came. 





Live and work but do not forget to play, to have fun in life and really enjoy it. 

Eileen Caddy





Now though things are different. Play centres are wonderful places when your child can be told to "go off and play" and they're happy to. With boys at 10 and 15 I'm at this stage and have been for a while and I love play centres. Sometimes at 15 BP doesn't want to "play" but he still goes off to mess around with his brother, which is great. 



7 Ways To De-Stress This Half Term | Head to the local play centre to wear your kids out - you may even chat with friends!
The play centre. Once a dreaded trip, now a welcome break!



Once your kids are old enough to go off on their own play centres are amazing, and it's a great way you can de-stress during the half term. You can arrange to meet up with your friends' so you can sit and have a chat while your kids play together. It's a great way to let your kids run riot for an hour while you have a coffee and catch up with friends. It also wears out your kids so by the time you leave they're ready for a rest and you can go home and chill out. 



Local activities


Libraries, leisure centres, even local village halls tend to run activities during half term. They're there to help you keep your kids entertained and usually there's refreshments on hand for you too. It's a quick and easy way to get your kids out of the house doing something and doesn't take much effort on your part, apart from getting them there. Check Facebook, your local supermarket's "what's on" advertising space, or ask around at school - people are sure to let you know.



Movie day at home


Plan a movie day. Stock up on popcorn and other snacks, plan an easy lunch or dinner and select a few of your favourite movies - you could even choose some movies you haven't seen yet. Then settle down for a lazy movie day. It's not often you get to stay in your pyjamas and watch TV all day but if it helps you de-stress this half term then why not?



7 Ways To De-Stress This Half Term | Pick movies, grab the popcorn, and wear your pjs!
My boys love a good movie day.



We have a few movies on our must-see list currently and I've been checking out the movies so I can organise our own movie day this coming half term. What movies would you watch?



Play outside


Let - or make - the kids play outside. Even if it's drizzling or snowing getting them to go outside encourages them to be kids. It's easy, particularly during half term, to let them sit and play video games all day so that you can get some peace but making them go outside for a while will get them doing something, maybe even getting a bit a of exercise.

Being outdoors is good for them, even if they claim to hate it. I have often made BP go outside to kick a football around with his brother because if I didn't he would never get any exercise. It's not good for them to be indoors the whole time so being Evil Mum occasionally helps them. And if you go outside with them you get to breathe the fresh air and watch them smile and laugh while they play - what better way to get rid of your stress?



Consoles


I know I just said you can't let them play games all day but allowing them time to play is not a bad thing. Consoles and video games are constantly called out as the cause for a lot of anti-social behaviour but I do think they have a place in our society, particularly now.



7 Ways To De-Stress This Half Term | Let them play - it's okay occasionally.
I don't know what my boys would do without their consoles!



My boys play games a lot. After school, at weekends, and especially during holidays and half term. Sometimes I wonder if they play too much, and I reduce the amount they're allowed to play - but usually I don't mind them going on their games. Back when we played games (you know, when dinosaurs roamed the earth!) it was always a solo venture. You sat in front of the TV on your own and made your character tackle monsters or jump over gaps in the landscape, but these days it's more of a  social thing. My boys are always talking to their friends and work together coming up with strategies and tackle obstacles together

Talking to each other is something that doesn't often happen these days as kids are constantly on their phones, but as they are concentrating on the game at hand it encourages them to talk to people. Working together towards a common goal teaches them about cooperation and they feel a sense of accomplishment when they reach the goal. And coming up with strategies to tackle problems can never be bad thing can it? They also get to learn which strategies work and which don't - helping their mental capacity to solve problems.





Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn. 

Benjamin Franklin





Allowing them to play their games also means you get to have a little peace while they do! Grab that coffee while you can and de-stress! 



Days out


Theme parks, Castles, even a walk through the woods will get you outside with your kids, teaching them about the world around them, about the history of a castle or how roller-coasters work. I've always found that we talk about the world a lot more when we go out for the day. 



7 Ways To De-Stress This Half Term | Visit a local castle and learn about its history...
We love visiting our local area and learning the history of it.



Walking around your local area is a great way to get out and about and talk to your kids. We've discussed everything from how trees grow to complicated science and maths questions. It gives your kids a chance to "get bored" and start wondering about the world. Once they do the questions might never stop, but getting them thinking about the world around them can never be a bad thing.



If all else fails


If you tried the play centre and the kids didn't like it, the local activities were "boring", movie day failed because they argued about which movie to watch, playing outside was a non-starter, their consoles were confiscated because they couldn't stop bickering, and days out are just not going to happen right now there's only one thing left for you to do... 

Lock yourself in the bathroom!

Let the kids run riot. Forget about doing the chores or cleaning up after them. Just hide. Take a coffee with you, and your Kindle or a book, and just hope they can keep themselves busy long enough for you to de-stress and finish your coffee!



7 Ways To De-Stress This Half Term | You don't have to spend a fortune or go to lots of places to have a great half term.



Being a stay-at-home mum during half term is taxing, the kids are always struggling with boredom and it's your job to make sure there are enough activities to keep them busy. But hopefully these things will help you de-stress during the upcoming half term.


Further reading


Over on the Huffington Post there's another great article that lists some ways you can de-stress and they're scientifically backed! Check out 20 Scientifically Back Ways to De-Stress Right Now.

As for us mums - it's all about surviving the holidays isn't it? That's why I love the post over on Nanny & Butler filled with tips on how to survive the school holidays stress-free.



How will you de-stress this half term?