Beach baby

For our last week on holiday we decided to head to the beach for some relaxing fun in the sun at Santa Monica’s amazing Casa Del Mar.

It had been a busy couple of weeks leading up to this, but once our feet were buried in the sand and our swimming costumes were on we instantly started to unwind. The weather might have been a little on the breezy/chilly side, but it was perfect for us to play with our bucket and spades … I forgot how much fun digging holes and building castles was – I’d even go as far as to say that I enjoyed it more than Buzz! Ha!

 

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Although one thing I wasn’t happy about was my failed swinging attempt on Muscle Beach – no, it’s not how it sounds. Hanging from a big steel structure were hoops in something resembling the game Hang Tough from The Gladiators. On the first day I watched a man whizzing up and down them and was dying to get on them and live out my dream of being on The Gladiators.

 

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Well, on the last day I had a go, but it didn’t go as smoothly as I’d hoped. I was too short and didn’t even make it to the second hoop. I had more luck on the children’s version, but even then I only got to the third hoop. I’ve sadly come to the conclusion that I’m never going to be a Gladiator. I’m crushed…

The flight from LA to London was a little bit more interesting this time around thanks to Buzz’s new ability to push buttons – the literal kind, not the metaphorical mental sort. My seat was going up and down during take off, much to his delight. He was extremely good though and slept for more than half of it. Hurrah.

 

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So now that we’re home, jetlag with a 14-month-old bubba has been rather interesting… Buzz has been waking in the night and refusing to go back to sleep. In fact, the other night he was up from 11:30pm until 4am wanting to munch on rice cakes and play. Needless to say we weren’t particularly impressed with the little monkey.

 

 

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It’s just a good job he’s got cuteness on his side. I’m sure he’ll settle back into our usual time zone soon… otherwise I’ll be adding a few extra grey hairs to my head and gaining darker bags under my eyes. Wonderful.

 

 

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Right, it’s time to stop pretending I’m still on holiday and get back to work – yes, that’s right. Time to get cracking on BOOK FOUR! I’m sure I’ll be able to tell you more about that soon, but before that I have the publication of Dream a Little Dream to look forward to in less than four weeks. Waaaah! For editions bought in Waterstones, I’ve written an exclusive extra chapter for the end of the book (which I hope will melt a few hearts), those versions are available for pre-order now if you fancy bagging one.

Have a fab week.

Big love,

Gi. Xx

Also worth mentioning – for anyone who’s been unable to sleep since last week’s blog – Buzz now knows that a helicopter is not a boat and has started signing and calling an actual boat a boat… phew!

Discovering Miami and celebrating our anniversary

We’re still off on our holibobs in LA and the last week was spent in Los Feliz in the wonderful Lindsey Kelk’s apartment (if you don’t know her – she writes stonkingly fabulous books that I highly recommend you check out). Not only were we given free rein of the place, but Lindsey also left a list of some of her favourite places for us to visit… We basically did them all and had so much fun. It was brilliant to go somewhere new and almost experience life as a local, rather than be limited to whatever is near a hotel – although we still did a few touristy trips, including the observatory and a trip to the Hollywood walk of fame where Buzz stumbled upon the star of a friend of his…

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Actually, I had some great recommendations from others as well – my sister went travelling a few years ago and told us to take a trip to Paradise Cove in Malibu. I’ve always wanted to go to that part of the coast thanks to a show I can remember watching in my teens called Malibu, CA – which was about these two brothers from NYC who’d moved there… I don’t know what it was about the place that attracted me, but the laidback, friendly nature of Paradise Cove didn’t disappoint and we had a superb family day out. Buzz absolutely loved playing on the beach – and that’s something he’s really developed on this holiday, the ability to play. Like, properly play. He makes his toys kiss each other, or bashes them around while talking to himself in his unique baby babble… It’s fascinating to watch.
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His words are also really developing. He can now loosely (we know exactly what he means when he says them) say: mumma, dadda, nanna, banana, more, boat, book, poo (thanks to us reading The Dinosaur that Pooped a Planet to him every night), yes, no… He also knows a few animal sounds and can quack, woof and moo – it’s adorable. His signing is really coming along too – although, even though he can sign and say boat, he’s gotten a bit confused and says it when he sees a helicopter… We’d better keep working on that one. Ha!
It’s been fabulous having some family time all together, especially while exploring somewhere new. Although sadly Buzz picked up a bug somehow and managed to puke on us four times over two days. Poor little man. All better now though and he’s eating more than ever (probably to make up for lost time).
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This week me and Tom also celebrated three years of marriage. Hurrah! To mark the occasion the three of us went to Rodeo Drive to mooch around the designer shops (nope, didn’t buy anything but got given some crayons and a colouring book in Tiffany & co – they were for Buzz) and also headed to the Beverly Wilshire (where Pretty Woman is set) for afternoon tea… It was faaaaaaabulous and one of the best afternoons of tea and cake that I’ve had. I also had my first LA celebrity spot as Kyle Richards from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills was in there… Obviously not impressive if you don’t watch the show, but I was pretty chuffed. I didn’t ask for a picture so you’ll just have to take my word for it.
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We’re now at the beach and loving building sandcastles – but more in that next week!
Big love!
Gi. Xx

Family time in Disneyland

Now that Tom’s finished the McBusted tour and I’ve finished working on DREAM A LITTLE DREAM (which is published next month – wah!), we decided it was time for a break and some sunshine. We’re actually away for a couple of weeks, but first stop has been a trip to Disneyland in LA.giovanna-disneyland-1-z

Tom had surprised his Dad for his 60th with a trip over there, so we’ve ended up gate crashing their trip – not that they’ve minded. They’ve loved having Buzz with them as we all walk around the happiest place on earth and soak up the wonderful atmosphere.

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On their first day in the park (we’d actually arrived a couple of days earlier) Buzz was stood waving at Mickey Mouse while he was having his photo taken when, much to Buzz’s surprise, Mickey saw him, walked over, took him by the hand and led him across Main Street… Now, if you’ve never been to Disney before, or never seen a child’s face when they’re stood face to face with one of their favourite characters, then you might not understand how incredible the whole thing was. They shared an utterly magical moment. It was super special and had Buzz’s grandparents in tears (and Tom – obviously).giovanna-disneyland-3-z

Usually when we go to Disneyworld (this is my first time in Disneyland) we spend our time running around trying to get on all the rides as many times as possible – but because of Buzz the whole thing took a bit more of a relaxed turn. We just wandered around slowly and took Buzz on all the child friendly rides.giovanna-disneyland-4-z

I’d say his favourite was the Dumbo ride where you sit in an elephant and fly around – it was the second ride we took him on and he’d wave at them whenever we walked by for the rest of our time there. We also took him on Pirates of the Caribbean – but, on reflection, that was a little darker than we remembered from WDW. Funny how you see things differently when you’ve got a little one to protect from seeing things that might scare him!

We’re now in the second phase of our trip (in which I’m visiting lots of cool places as research for BOOK FOUR!!) but I’ll tell you more about that next week.
Lots of love from us and our magical friends.
Gi. Xx

Honoured to watch another bestie get married…

When I was fifteen a girl in my class at Sylvia Young Theatre School was possibly going to have to leave because, well, let’s face it – leaving her family in Wales and having to board in London was blooming expensive and it was tough being away from a family environment. That night I went home and asked my mum and dad if she could come and live with us for a year. They said yes and so she did. My double bed was swapped for two singles and my lovely welsh friend Lauren became my roomie, staying with us Monday to Friday before going back to her family home in The Valleys at the weekends. I loved having someone to travel with from Essex to London and I absolutely loved having an ally as lovely as her. I wasn’t a popular child, but I wasn’t unpopular – I was a drifter, wanting to be liked by everyone but never really sure where I fit in. I thought I was unique in those feelings, but growing older I’ve realised that, actually, that’s all a part of being a teenager. We’re meant to go through periods of paranoia – it’s all a part of growing up and learning to cope with the pressures of life.

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But in my friendship with Lauren I found a strength and solidity that I hadn’t seen before. My beautiful Lauren has always been an unwavering friend. It hasn’t been easy to see each other over the years, but I know, without question, that silence means nothing between us. Distance and time never force us to question our loyalty or love for each other.

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This week I was honoured to stand beside Lauren as her bridesmaid and watch as she married the wonderful Dan, in what was a three day glamping event in Fforest, West Wales (we stayed in a dome that looked like something magical from the Tellytubbies), with a festival, woodland type feel. It was beautiful – as was the bride. Mamma Shirl (her mum) along with her team of helpers, had put in an obscene amount of effort and MADE not only the bridesmaid dresses, flower arrangements, all the decorations, invites and wedding stationary – but also Lauren’s dress. Which was simply incredible. I had so much fun watching another bestie get married – although this time my knees killed for days afterwards. Probably from all the jumping up and down I did on the dance floor. Ha! Congratulations to the new Mr and Mrs Hall! Love you guys…

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Sticking to the wedding theme – my sister gets married in October (yes, I’m a bridesmaid – that’s three times this year) and this weekend we conquered the extremely exciting task of finding her a wedding dress. Three shops and three glasses of bubbles later (check out the photo of me and my mum), and we were back in the first shop trying on the third dress she’d tried on and buying it. I obviously won’t be giving away any details of her dress on here (not yet), but I can’t wait to see her in it again in a few months. The dress is totally her and I know the groom Lee (AKA Chickpea) is going to love it. She looks stunning.

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Also this week…

…I’ve been plagued with a chronic ear infection (which was the reason for my absence last week). It’s been agony and although I’m still in pain it’s nothing compared to what it was.

…I managed to superglue my fingers together, yet again. Warm water, soap and vinegar set me free…

…I’ve completely finished working on my third novel DREAM A LITTLE DREAM. Hurrah, hurrah! There’s not long to go until its publication date in June and I can’t wait to see what people make of this one.

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And now I’m on holiday with Tom and Buzz! Yay! It’s still sort of work as I’m doing research for my fourth novel (which I’ll start writing on as soon as I’m back), but I’m so excited to be away from my desk with no deadlines hanging over me.

Right, time to breathe and unwind.

Big love,

Gi. Xx

P.S. Thank you to everyone who’s watched and commented on Tom’s dandelion video. Buzz has such a cute little giggle and we’re thrilled it’s helped spread a smile around the world.

The photo of us with the bride and groom was taken by the talented Marc at marcsmithphotography.com.

A Trip to the Seaside and a Very Special Wedding…

The beginning of this rather sunny and lovely week was spent in Bournemouth. Tom and the McBusted boys headed there on tour, and me and Buzz decided to tag along for the ride to enjoy some family time. Although, realistically me and Tom actually became a parenting tag team, with me going off to work on my next novel in the daytime and Tom heading out to perform in the arena at night. Occasionally it can feel that our time as a trio is a little limited, but I think we’re becoming very good at juggling the situation.

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Take Tuesday afternoon, for example – I’d been sat on my laptop in the hotel room all morning (it was a flipping lovely spot with an awesome view) when, after lunch together, Tom said he was going to take Buzz to the beach. Now, I’d been working all morning and was happy with the progress I’d been making, so decided to take a cheeky couple of hours off to play in the sand with my husband and bubba… and I didn’t feel even the tiniest bit guilty. No really… sitting there in the sunshine and taking in that vitamin D gave me a lovely little breather, making me realise just how important it is to stop and live life every now and then. I know I can become really fixated on workload and deadlines, but in reality I have a little boy who’s growing up extremely quickly and a husband who’d probably like a conversation or two with his wife every now and then. Giving them my time and love will always be my top priority… and rightly so.

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Also this week my lovely, kind and beautiful friend Savannah Stevenson (Glinda in Wicked) married the charming and funny Nathan Copier. I was a bridesmaid and felt so proud watching the pair declare their love for one another and I actually wept the whole way through their heartfelt speeches. Sav’s been in my life for seven years now, and from the moment we met I knew we were destined to be great friends (we bonded over Marks and Spencer’s chocolate covered toffee popcorn – little piece of heaven). Sav has a great set of morals and values, and I just love her dearly – I couldn’t be happier that Nate has come along and whisked her off her feet.

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Tom and Buzz also came along to the wedding, and I’m grateful that Buzz slept the whole way through the service – although was rather comically gurgling with agreement during some of the speeches later on. Tom had to occupy him with his first ever scone to keep him quiet. Talking of Tom – he was Sav’s something blue as his hair is very, very, very, very, very, blue right now…

This week also marks four years since Tom and I got engaged. I can’t believe it’s been so long, although in all honestly it also feels like a lifetime ago that Tom got down on one knee in the shell of our old school, on the spot that we first met. So much has happened since, it really has been an adventure.

Right, I best get back to my edits – but before I go I just want to say a huge thank you for all the tweets you guys send me after reading this blog. Occasionally I touch on matters that are very close to my heart and extremely honest, the supportive comments never go amiss and encourage me to keep going with what I’m doing.

Big love to you all.

Gi. Xx

Getting the work/play ratio right…

Over the last six months I’ve been working my little (optimistic – it’s more medium to large sized thanks to all the biscuits I’ve been consuming) butt off writing, vlogging and blogging. Obviously the biggest chunk of that time has been spent writing my next novel Dream a Little Dream.

Writing a book is a huge task and the whole process demands a lot of my time, energy and effort. If I’m not at my desk writing I’m usually thinking about the characters and what I have left to do – which quickly causes me to feel guilty that I’m not at my desk writing… But then I have Buzz – and I see how he’s changing every day – how the sounds coming out of his mouth differ, how he’s started communicating and playing differently and how he’s really growing into a more independent toddler… and I feel guilty there too. Guilty for working and enjoying what I’m creating, but guilty for wanting to see the human I made grow into a little person. Guilt, guilt, guilt… what a horrible emotion that is.

I spoke of mummy guilt back in September when I first opened my blank Word document in my office and sent Buzz off to be with my mother in law a few days a week. Usually I’m fine – I love, love, love everything that I do, and thoroughly enjoy doing it – but there are days where I’d actually prefer to shut the world out and just be with my family, relishing life with nothing hanging over me… especially on sunny days when I know other people are out taking their children to the park or off on fun adventures.

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Well, thankfully this week has been the first spent away from my desk in AGES! In fact, it feels odd to be back typing at this keypad after seven whole days spent in the sunshine, enjoying the unexpected spring heat. Hasn’t it been amazing?! I’ve been out walking almost every day and it’s been wonderful… It’s made me realise exactly why downtime with your family is important. I think I get so caught up in all the things that have to be done (I’m actually planning a complete over-haul of the house whenever things quiet down – life is never-ending) that I forget to stop and chill. Well, from now on I’m pledging to myself that I will no longer work at weekends and that I’ll give myself a definite two days off a week… fairly simple and necessary.

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This isn’t a grumble – I’ve already said I absolutely love what I do and couldn’t imagine wanting to do anything else, however – I think it’s about finding a balance that works for you and your family home. So to every mum or dad that’s ever felt guilty for the tim

FullSizeRendere spent away from their child – chin up, I’m sure you’re doing a wonderful job at providing for your family, as well as setting a fab example about working hard and fulfilling your dreams.

Well, it seems I’ve been freed from my cage for long enough – my publishers have sent over some edits to do, so I’m off to ponder over those with a cup of decaf coffee and an Easter egg… I really can’t wait for this book to be read by you all and hear some reactions – that’s when all this hard work really becomes worthwhile.
Until next week…

Big Love!

Gi. Xx

Let’s talk about boobs…

You all know I love talking about my boobs and I don’t think I’ve mentioned them in a while… So let’s talk boobs!

Having breastfed Buzz for a whole year (I can’t believe I’ve managed to do it this long after my tricky start) I’ve finally decided to stop… Almost! Buzz is now down to one feed a day, which he has first thing in the morning. Sometimes he wakes up at five AM and having a quick feed sends him back for another couple of hours, so I’m a bit dubious about cutting that one out right now – but I will do it very soon once he’s sleeping through to a decent time again.

 

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But, seeing as my body responded nice and gently to cutting out the evening feed (no hard, tingly breasts) I’ve managed to go back into my old bras. I can’t tell you how excited I was when I dug them out from the back of my knicker draw. I mean, I wish they were a little more exciting than a variety of black or nude t-shirt bras, but nonetheless – they were back in my life… Fun times, right? Well no, actually. No. Turns out they’re not as blooming comfy as I remember and under-wiring is a total bitch… The only thing I loved was my boobies looking all lovely and bouncy again in the familiar setting I was used to seeing them in… (And no I’m not going to post a picture of them… Perverts! Ha!)

 

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Anyway, I don’t think the highlight of my week was looking at myself in the mirror, but after being told babies ‘suck the life out of them’, I was rather impressed. Haaa! In all seriousness nothing prepared me for how much they were going to change over the last couple of years – from the moment I got pregnant they developed a life of their own… Hard (like rocks), squishy (like stress balls), lumpy, bumpy, darker, lighter, bigger, smaller… It’s all been going on and I feel like, for the first time ever, I’ve finally got to know my boobs…

 

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Which leads me onto a rather special brunch I had last week with the inspirational Kris Hallenga from Coppafeel. She’ll probably hate referring to her as that, but I think she’s quite a remarkable and special lady. When Kris was just 22 years old she found a lump in her boob. A lump that was shrugged off by her GP as nothing to worry about… Eight months later she went back to the doctor and eventually got them to refer her to get it checked out properly. Tests revealed she had breast cancer. Stage four breast cancer. Not the type to be ignored as, in her own words ‘there is no stage five.’ Further tests showed Kris also had spine cancer. Fast forward a few years and she’s also been dealt with cancer of the liver, hips and pelvis as well as a brain tumour… There are no words!

 

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Kris’s outlook is that she’s ‘living’ with cancer… And she really is. Since her original diagnosis, Kris and her twin sister Maren founded Coppafeel! – a charity to get people aware of their bodies and regularly checking in for lumps and bumps. Kris is on a mission to make people rethink Cancer. It’s not just something old people get and actually, new research figures have shown that 1 in 2 people will develop a form of cancer in their lifetime… That’s flipping mental! The message is clear – check yourself and go to the doctor if you think something is awry. You know your body better than anyone else, so fight for more tests if you’re in any doubt.

 

 

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Kris is a flipping amazing person who I feel lucky to have met. I’m now a firm supporter of Coppafeel! and look forward to having lots of fun and games with them in the near future.

So, now I’ve started copping a good feel of my own babs I’m not going to stop… And I encourage you all to go have a good feel of your own right now.

Go on… NOW!

 

 

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Also this week Tom and the Mcbusted guys played the O2. I took Buzz down there and the adorable little thing happily sat through both shows in his Babybjorn carrier – clapping, waving and bouncing away. He’s been watching old McFly videos on YouTube, so he totally gets that it’s his daddy up there.

Hope you’ve all had a brilliant week and enjoyed Easter! Buzz had his first try of chocolate with a bit of a Kinder Surprise egg… needless to say, he loved it. He’s also loved exploring on his new smarTrike – which he looks so grown up on! Waaaaah!

Right, go on now – go ‘Coppafeel’.

Big love to you all!

Gi. Xxx

Buzz starts walking

This week has been manic. So manic that I’m in shock that I’ve managed to find time to write this… But I have to keep you guys posted on what’s going on in my life, don’t I?!

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The start of the week was spent on tour with Tom and the McBusted boys – Glasgow, Newcastle and then Leeds before heading back home. I’ll be honest, I was so happy to be heading home and knowing we’re going to be based here for a few weeks. Buzz hasn’t got back into his regular sleeping pattern since getting home from Australia, which I’m guessing is because he’s been poorly (teething and a rotten cold – blurgh), but also because we’ve been staying in different hotels every few nights and he’s not been in his own room. I know I shouldn’t say this as I’ll totally jinx the situation, but he’s slowly easing himself back into sleeping through the night in his own bed… Yes, that’s the other appalling habit we’ve fallen into – bringing him into our bed. How dare we?!? It’s just so tough when you’re jetlagged/tired and just want to sleep yourself, especially when you know that all he wants is your company because he’s woken up somewhere scary and new. To be honest, I don’t think a snuggle with your mummy and daddy is a lot to ask… But I’m so glad he’s starting sleeping better in his own bed! Although I love having him with me, I don’t sleep quite so well with him there… Sorry Buzz!

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In other baby news… BUZZ HAS STARTED WALKING! (Yes, that totally needed the caps lock on) So far he’s managed a total of twelve steps in one go and finds it hilarious. Although, he still prefers to crawl everywhere or side-step along furniture. It’s scary to think he’ll be running around the house in no time… Eek!

 

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Sadly when we got home at 3am on Wednesday night, following a drive from the boy’s gig in Leeds, we found that one of our cats had been sick everywhere… Poor Leia was walking around in quite a state so Tom ended up taking her to see the emergency vet. We thought it was a virus or bug at first, but by Friday she still wasn’t herself, hadn’t eaten anything and had started to refuse water. After another trip to the vets, and more tests, we found out that her kidneys were severely failing and that she needed specialist treatment somewhere else. Long story short – crystallised matter has been found in her kidneys, suggesting she’s ingested anti-freeze. The specialist said Leia’s chances of survival were minuscule to none… Something that was incredibly difficult to hear. On Saturday morning, before Tom was due to head off on tour again, we went to visit Leia and hear the latest. In all honesty, we thought we were going there to say goodbye. Well… It turned out Leia had been responding extremely well to the treatment and had even eaten breakfast. We were shocked. Tom cried, obviously, but I’m relieved that they were happy tears. Leia still has a big fight ahead of her – her kidneys may never fully recover, but we’re glad she’s more comfortable than she was before. She’s a very special cat – she’s been a blood donor for the RVC and saved the lives of other cats. She’s dippy and loving and I can’t wait for her to come home and sleep on my pillow at night time again!!

 

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Also this week:

– I’ve been burying my head in make believe! My next book Dream a Little Dream is published in June and I’ve been working my butt off and loving it. I love the fact that anything could happen when I close the door of my office each morning.

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– Our lovely friend Chunny is expecting her baby girl to arrive in a matter of weeks, and to celebrate Izzy threw her a gorgeous babyshower. A night talking babies and cooing over the new adventure Chunny is about to start with wonderful girlies was delightful!! Good luck Chunny!!!

Right, I’d better get back to it.

Big love to you all!

Gi. Xx

Buzz is now a one year old!

Buzz is now a one year old… it feels so odd typing that. It’s been an extremely emotional week for me as I’ve found myself reminiscing back to this time last year, when he first entered our lives.

The last year has been filled with so many different emotions. I think I’ve laughed, cried and loved more than I have in my entire lifetime. Being a mum is hard work – I can’t remember the last time I had a lie in or showered without feeling like I have had to rush in case Buzz wakes up or, if showering before Tom goes to work, hurrying so that we both have time to get ready before he leaves. Holding conversations and dining out with friends has become a multi-tasking mission that’s exhausting as you listen and nod eagerly (loving the adult interaction) while simultaneously jumping at your child’s every move and dragging them away from plug sockets, sharp edges on tables and removing from their mouths whatever it is they found and started chewing on while you picked up your coffee cup for a quick swig of its lukewarm contents. And then there’s my appearance – I permanently look as though I’ve just got out of bed in my frumpy, bedraggled state. If only that were the case, but, as stated above, I haven’t slept in late for a whole year now… In fact, I can’t even remember the last time I slept the whole way through the night – because, even if Buzz does, I can’t help but go in and check up on him.

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Gone are the days when I could spend hours getting ready, gone are the hot drinks and the hours of sleep. Gone are the hours of watching trashy TV (they’ve been replaced with The Muppets on repeat). Gone is my size ten figure (for now).

Yet… I don’t care.

I’m perfectly happy with this new way of living – especially when Buzz cracks a smile in my direction, laughs at something stupid I’m doing for his amusement, sings along to whatever I’m squawking to or gives me a kiss I’ve not had to ask for, just because I’m his mummy and he had an urge to do so. Those are the magical moments that make everything worthwhile and remind me how beautiful my life has become.

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‘We made him’.

Those are the words that have been said by us dozens of times over the last year as we’ve watched in amazement as he’s tackled the world around him. In many ways it feels as though it was only yesterday that we welcomed him into our lives, but in others it feels as though he’s always been here with us.

I feel immensely proud to have such a gorgeous little boy to call my son.

So, with his first year of life complete, we celebrated by going up to Glasgow with Tom and the McBusted boys, where they kicked off their UK tour. Buzz was treated to a whopping big Kermit cake and Muppet cupcakes (made by a great company I found up in Scotland called The Little Cake Parlour) – and we even let him try a bit. His face as the sugary delight touched his lips was a treat – he couldn’t get the rest in quick enough.

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That night we went along to the Hydro Arena to watch Tom and McBusted perform. I thought Buzz would pass out and fall asleep within a few songs, but he sat and watched the whole thing while waving at his daddy and munching on rice cakes… rock’n’roll! Tom also spotted Buzz in the crowd and waved – which felt pretty epic and emotional too.

I’ve also met a lot of people this week who’ve said they read this blog and watch my vlogs… You’ve all been with me on this new adventure of mummyhood and it’s so lovely to be able to meet some of you and hear your comments. Thanks for your continued support and love.

Sending lots of love to you all!

Love Gi. Xx

We’re home!

We’re hoooooooooome! Our Australian adventure has come to an end and we’re now back in our jumpers and coats debating whether to go out in the rain again… ah, it feels so good to be back in our own bed and have Buzz back in his room. Obviously it’s been amazing to be on the other side of the world altogether, but all being in the one room at night-time has been interesting… I’m just thrilled that Tom and I will no longer be having to watch films on the laptop with our headphone splitters… Although I loved watching Broadchurch and Better Call Saul with Tom while sharing a bar of chocolate and sipping on a little glass of wine – they were lovely.

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Having been away for three weeks, I thought I’d share with you the top five baby essentials that helped me through our trip:

1. Mountain Nano pushchair – this item absolutely made my trip a million times easier. Light, compact and perfect for travelling around, I really did come across a piece of magic when I was told about it from another parent who’d also been travelling around Oz with a baby.
2. Tote bags – lots of them. I’ve become a tote lady since becoming a mummy. There’s nothing better to keep all your bits organised. Seeing as Buzz and I shared one suitcase it was fab to sort our socks from our swimwear – or knickers from our nappies.
3. Aden and Anais Sleeping bags – Buzz sleeps in these at home, but the thicker version seeing as it’s winter. Having the thinner version gave Buzz some continuity and meant we didn’t have to worry about him suddenly having a blanket when he’s never had one before. Do any other parents worry about when to introduce blankets? With so many SIDS warnings I think I’ll keep Buzz in a bag for a little bit longer…

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4. Ear Defenders – seeing as Buzz was going to be in Stadiums with loud music playing and hoards of screaming girls, we clearly needed to take these along with us. Buzz last used these when he went to watch Tom and McBusted headline at Hyde Park. I’m thankful that they don’t bother him in the slightest and that he’s happy to sit with them on.
5. Peppa Pig books – Buzz loves Peppa (to the point where his first word was actually ‘Peppa’), his face literally lights up any time he sees her. He also loves books and can keep him entertained for a good amount of time – perfect for shorter flights.

Bonus item…

6. BabyBjorn Active Carrier – I used this a lot, especially when getting on flights with Buzz on my own. It’s just really great to have your hands free. It was also fab at the aquarium (Buzz’s favourite) as it meant he could really look around.

Tom leaves to start the McBusted UK tour next weekend – which means he’ll be in Scotland for Buzz’s first birthday. Understandably, we’d quite like the three of us to be together on that special day, so we’re tagging along again. However, this means our families won’t get to see the little dude and has meant we’ve had to throw an early first birthday party… Seeing as we’ve just got back from Oz and are still suffering with jet lag, we decided to keep things simple and low key by just inviting the Fletcher/Falcone gang. Plus, seeing as we’ve been away, they had a lot of Buzz time to catch up on.

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We filled the frames in the lounge with Buzz’s favourite fictional characters, puffed up some balloons (Tom couldn’t resist rubbing them on Buzz’s head and creating static to make it stand on end) and ate a Toystory inspired cake (kindly made by a distant relative). It was a wonderful day – completed with Buzz having his first taste of cake. He refused it at first, but once he had a nibble he was hunting out more crumbs. Bless him. We’re currently planning his Glasgow cake for when we celebrate up there.

Right, I better crack on with some work. Can you believe it’s March already? Scary stuff!

Big Love,

Gi. Xx

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