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  • Celebrating Halloween with Alex and Alexa

    On our first Halloween as parents, the boys were one day old.  We brought them home from the hospital; Kirsty wore them in a sling and took them on the bus, and I took a taxi and met her at home.  I don’t think that we registered that it was Halloween.  We stumbled to bed and stared at our babies in a daze and if, that night, little trick-or-treaters rang the bell for us, we were so exhausted that we didn’t know it. On our second Halloween as parents, Kirsty knitted the most elaborate little costumes and we took the boys to a Halloween Parade.  Secretly, on the other side of London, the small balls of cells that would become their sisters were dividing in a petri dish.  We held our sons, who were still babies, and marvelled that we had known them for a year. On our third Halloween…

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    40 Weeks with a Little Snowflake

    There comes a morning where I convince myself that I can’t possibly go into labour whilst we still have the old sofa. All morning, I blink back tears whenever I think about it – how old it is, how battered, how the shiny blackness of the material adds nothing to the aesthetic of our living room. I think about how much worse labour will be when I am staring at that sofa, and how on edge I will feel when the midwives sit down on it. A colleague asks how I am and my woes spill out of me in a ranting, miserable stream. “I wish,” I tell her, “that I could buy a new one. Right now. A rainbow sofa.” “Ours has rainbow buttons,” she says, and sends me a link. It is beautiful. I order it in the lift on my way back from collecting my boss’s lunch,…

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    Little Tikes STEM Jr Wonder Lab [REVIEW]

    Last month, we were lucky enough to be sent a Little Tikes STEM Jr Wonder Lab to review. New to hit the market, the STEM Jr Wonder Lab is the only STEM lab designed for preschoolers and the boys were almost incoherant with excitement when it arrived and they were told that it was for them!  At almost four, they are at this funny age where most of their current toys are suddenly seeming a little ‘babyish’ for them but at the same time, the next step up in toys still seems too grown-up to hold their interest.  Their favourite way to play seems to be energetically outside and a new climbing frame and scooters have been big hits recently, but with school fast approaching we are also keen to encourage them to focus their minds on more cerebral pursuits.  So we were interested to try the Wonder Lab, which is…

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    A DITL: Everything is Changing

    Everything is changing. Some days I feel as though I’m on the crest of a huge wave and if I stare ahead I can see the city in the distance and it is beautiful. But if I look down, all I can see is the gaping chasm threatening to devour us. I feel as though I am holding on to everyone tightly, too tightly. The children fight this control and I find myself engaged in petty power battles with people half my size; when I raise my voice my sons shout back, and I am shocked that my sweet and respectful toddlers are capable of such defiance. I try to remember to breathe before speaking, to give myself that moment, but on some days I am so tired that if I pause for even a second, I fear that I won’t be able to start again. The girls have just…

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    The Beginning of the End

    Featuring images and video by Hannah Palamara Honestly Feminine. I take my little boys to one of my appointments; they are due their MMR vaccinations and we are keen to desensitise them to anything medical. We dash for the bus together in the rain and sit up top on the double decker, pretending to drive. We laugh about how we almost missed the bus and they tell me, over and again, how kind the driver was to stop and wait for us. I look down at their bright little faces, their shiny big eyes, and I feel overwhelmed with pride to have grown and formed these sweet boys, these good and appreciative humans. We purchase magazines and blueberries for the appointment and they promise me that they will not disrupt the appointment, that they will sit quietly and listen to the baby’s heartbeat and if they are good, they can…

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