Natalie Anderson Natalie Anderson

Freddie’s Terrible Twos, a birthday party and an Emmerdale cricket match

Hello everyone,
I hope you’re all well and as always thank you so much for reading my blog. I know I seem to say this every post but yet again it’s been a jam packed couple of weeks.

Firstly it finally happened, my little baby became a big boy and turned 2…..and don’t I know it. I can categorically say that the terrible twos are definitely not a myth. Most of the time my gorgeous boy Freddie is an absolute angel, full of character and personality, but the minute he doesn’t get his own way at the moment it’s as if he’s possessed by another being. There’s screaming, shouting, flinging himself about and lots of crying with very little reasoning to be had. It is hard work. How can you reason with someone who can’t quite communicate what and why they want/don’t want to do something? Well it requires a lot of patience and understanding which believe me is so much easier said than done when you are struggling with a 2-year-old who has no fear of chucking himself backwards and whose growing arms and legs pack a real punch when being flung around in an outburst of rage. Such was the case on the day of Freddie’s birthday party.


I was so excited this year as I felt really organised and much more like super mum than the previous year. I’d arranged soft play, face painting, a mascot visit and a proper children’s party tea at a lovely play gym near our house and so was feeling quite confident and I suppose a little bit smug with myself. That was until we had to put Freddie into his car seat to get there. Not quite at the age of understanding that a birthday party is generally a nice event that is solely focused on spoiling and entertaining the birthday boy or girl, he threw himself on the floor and began crying hysterically whilst shouting “No….I don’t like car seat”. For the next 15 minutes we had all on trying to get him in the car, all the while I was internally panicking as I knew our guests would now be arriving at the party. When we finally got there all the other children had begun playing in the play gym and having their faces painted, birthday boy however was still screaming his head off and so I felt hot, flustered and like the worst mother in the world. 2 party rings and a packet of crisps later he was absolutely fine and my angel child had returned and so the party continued.

The children played and had their party tea and then they all sang happy birthday to Freddie which I found really emotional as opposed to last year when he didn’t really know what was going on. He really seemed to enjoy his little moment and absolutely loved his Thomas the Tank Engine cake, it was also so cute watching him trying to blow out his candles, I’ll admit there may have been a little mummy magic in helping them go out as I blew super quickly at the side of him. Nevertheless he was thrilled, I therefore couldn’t wait for my next surprise for him. After spending all summer obsessively watching Peppa Pig I thought I’d get him a mascot visit from Peppa herself and so I excitedly said to Freddie he had another party guest and Peppa was revealed. His face however dropped and went red and then the tears began again as Peppa walked towards him. He cried “Mummy no like Peppa Pig”. He was obviously overwhelmed and a bit scared of the giant version of Peppa that stood before him and so I felt like the worst mother….again. Thankfully the other kids loved having their picture taken with Peppa and slowly but surely Freddie came around enough to say hello before nervously running off again. At the end of the day and feeling a little bedraggled I asked him if he’d enjoyed his party and he said yes and then I asked what his favourite bit was and he said……”Peppa Pig Mummy!” Hurray….last minute goal for mummy!



As an extra little treat during the week of Freddie’s birthday we went to see the touring version of Shrek with some of the other Emmerdale cast members. Obviously with Freddie being so young we were a bit nervous taking him as we weren’t sure how he was going to react to sitting still and quiet through a musical extravaganza and if we were going to have to make a speedy exit 10 minutes in. However to our delight he was completely mesmerised throughout the whole thing. He absolutely loved it and even proclaimed that he’d seen a dragon as we were leaving the theatre at the end. It was a fantastic show. James and I had previously seen it in the West End but I think I laughed even more on second viewing. It’s so well produced, the acting, singing, set design and score are all brilliant and I would highly recommend it to anyone but especially those with children looking for something to see at the theatre as it’s so much fun.


The following weekend the Emmerdale cricket team were due to play a match at Crakehall in North Yorkshire in aid of the Fraja Elle appeal and so Chris Chittell (Emmerdale’s Eric Pollard) suggested that we camp at a tiny little campsite next door to the village. Although some of the others were a little hesitant, I for one was really up for it. I’d spent what felt like my whole childhood camping and the idea of it normally provoked memories of being freezing cold, listening to my parents arguing over how to put the tent up and how to read a map and so in my adult years I’d rebelled and gone for 5 star luxury holidays. However since having Freddie I now look at my own childhood holidays with great fondness and remember laughing a lot whilst getting soaked and running for cover with my mum or inventing new games to pass the time because we daren’t step outside our tent, it felt like now was the perfect time to revisit the camping holiday. As it was only one night and James and I were both due to be playing cricket, we decided to leave Freddie at home, plus I was very aware that the putting up of a tent between couples can sometimes result in the threat of divorce. It was such a great little trip and I was incredibly proud of James and I as despite a few niggly little things “the tent peg does not go that way!” we did really well.


Chris Bisson who plays Jai Sharma also came along with his super gorgeous girlfriend Rowena which was fantastic as they also have a little boy called Harry who is a couple of months younger than Freddie and we try meet up outside of work when can, however this trip was adults only.

Chris Chittell set up a BBQ on the eve and cooked the most gorgeous ribs, sausages, burgers and steaks. There was music, wine and lots of chatting under the stars whilst huddled under blankets. It was brilliant!! Unfortunately hurricane Bertha decided to make an appearance around 10am the next day and we had to very quickly decamp as the rain started to fall which made me giggle a bit as that’s generally how a camping holiday ends anyway. Sadly we didn’t get to play the match as the rain got so heavy which was such a shame for the charity, although lots of people still braved the elements and hung around anyway buying cupcakes and tea which I thought was really lovely. Hopefully we will be back at Crakehall next year bigger and better and I’ll probably have an 8 man tent!!


I’ll also be camping with my family over the August bank holiday next weekend and so I’ll be sure to let you know how I get on. A tent AND a two year old…wish me luck.

Lots of Love

Natalie xxx

Ps if you’d like more details about the Fraja Ellie appeal please visit.


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