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  1. Easy ways to keep fit this autumn

    Now that summer’s over and the holidays have ended, now is a good time to get focused on your fitness and give your health a much-needed boost. Don’t let the colder weather stop you from getting fit; there are plenty of ways to get healthy this autumn. Take a look at these great ways to get fit this season.

    Easy ways to keep fit this autumn Pexels 

    Take up walking

    Walking is one of the most effective exercises for your body. It’s ideal for those who have a low fitness level and can help boost your heart rate enough to count as some of your recommended daily activity. You should aim to walk 10,000 steps or more a day (roughly five miles) to help stay fit and lose some weight. As it starts getting colder, you should invest in some new walking clothes. You can pick up some lovely designer country clothing by Schoffel to make sure you warm on those chillier autumn days. Make sure you invest in a good scarf and some hats as well as layers you can take off if you get too warm.

    Start running

    Running is a fantastic exercise that improves your stamina and works several muscle groups. Running can also be quite therapeutic, so it’s good for your mental health too. Check out this running guide for beginners to help you get started and ensure that you practice the right technique. All you need is a good pair of running trainers and a motivational playlist to help you discover a love for running.

    Practice yoga

    Yoga is an excellent exercise to help you relieve stress, improve flexibility and take some time for yourself. As an ideal exercise for parents, you can take up yoga in your own home using workout videos and even TV workouts that will teach the moves and let you learn at your own pace. Yoga is suitable for people of all abilities, despite what you might think. There are many variations to help make exercises easier, and you can also buy equipment like elastic bands to help you improve your stretch to work your way up to those more complex moves.

    Start cycling

    Cycling in the summer months can make you too hot, which makes it harder to get where you want ago. When the weather is cooler in autumn, you can get on your bike and enjoy cycling longer distances while admiring the beautiful autumn foliage. Take care when cycling by wearing a helmet and equip your bike with lights. As the mornings and evenings get darker you should also kit yourself out in reflective clothing and lighter colours to help other cyclists, drivers and pedestrians see you when you’re on the road.

    Making an effort to get fit during the autumn months will help you beat those post-summer blues and help you keep your energy levels high. While it’s tempting to just curl up on the sofa, getting fit now will help you to ward off winter colds and viruses and beat the winter bloat. A balanced diet to accompany your new fitness plan will help you boost your immunity for a happy and healthy autumn.

    Related blog posts:

    How to exercise with a toddler or children at home
    Your ultimate inspirational guide to being truly healthy - Stop focusing on weight and start focusing on health instead
    Getting the Kids to Eat Healthier | Parenting Tips
    Physical education is no longer physical!

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    Easy ways to keep fit this autumn

    *collaborative post

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  2. Looking at the most popular ways to decorate the bedroom

    We all know how interior design presents us with plenty of weird and wonderful ways to decorate our homes. And whilst a bedroom should always have the basics of a mattress and somewhere to store clothes, there are also lots of fun ways to add a personal touch to our sleeping spaces.

    So what are the most popular bedroom designs out there, and what it is about these designs that make them so attractive?

    Nautical themes

    The clean blues and whites of the nautical look make it a failsafe option for adding plenty of light and colour. This classic look is partially based upon the New England cottage style that embraces a certain amount of ramshackle rustic charm, whilst keeping the colour palette relatively restrained.

    It’s a look that’s great for a smaller bedroom as the light colours make the room seem bigger than it really is, plus it shows that it not just Bedstar’s small double mattresses that can save the day if you have a compact bedroom.

    And with plenty of fun nautical motifs such as compasses and anchors to include, it’s a look that a lot of fun - particular if you add a few seashells around the room!

    Minimalist aesthetics

    Looking at the most popular ways to decorate the bedroom

    The 21st century has seen minimalism become a big part of interior design. Whether it’s Scandinavian chic or even the increasingly popular Japanese minimal style, it’s all about getting rid of any unnecessary chintz and focusing on the key ingredients of the room.

    So in order to get this look be sure to have a good clear out and think about painting the walls a muted colour with white, beige or on-trend grey being strong choices for the minimalist look.

    And think about how to maximise the impact of your bedroom furniture. Whether that means investing in a stylish mid-century modern bedside table, or even getting a sleek geometric print blanket for your bed, it can all add a touch of sophisticated style without becoming too overwhelming.

    Exotic choices

     

    But some of us will be keen to embrace some of the wilder interior trends that have been hitting our bedrooms recently.

    Most of us will be aware that tropical themes have been massive in the world of decor, and if it wasn’t a jungle-themed cushion cover, then you can be sure that you were never too far away from a pineapple lamp!

    And with other cool exotic styles hitting our homes that see us embracing Moroccan influences with terracotta ornaments and ‘ethnic’ rug designs, it shows that bedroom design is about so much more than just deciding which kind of mattress to buy.

    Related Blog Posts:
    Your Guide To A Better Night's Sleep
    5 tips to get a better night’s sleep naturally
    The secrets to a long term relationship with Bed Guru
    Mistakes we’ve made with our renovation
    My top tips to prepare for a house move

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    Looking at the most popular ways to decorate the bedroom

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  3. Monthly Family Roundup: What we got up to in August 2017

    Eek we’re a third of the way through September and I’ve only just found the time to sit down and share what we got up to in August.  This involves looking back through my planner to remember everything as with mum brain I just can’t remember it all off the top of my head!  I know we did an awful lot though as it was the summer holidays.  Ben is sat next to me now as I type as I’ve badgered him for his photos.  I don’t even think I’ve looked through his photos for the whole summer holidays so it’s a great way for me to recall everything we did and have a nosey through his pics!

    Catch up on my previous family roundups here:
    What we got up to in June 2017

    What we got up to in July 2017

    Here’s what we got up to in August 2017:

    Visit family in Germany

    The first Monday to Friday we went to Germany to visit some of Ben’s family.  Ben’s mum is German and we visit Ben’s gran (who is 93, wow), his uncle and cousins.  It was the first time we’ve been since Ben’s mum passed away last year so I think we both felt a little emotional about going.  The last time we went was August last year and we’d been with Ben’s mum.  It was the fifth time we’ve been as a family and three of the times were with Ben’s mum, so it is a big reminder.  We had a great time and it’s so great to see Ben’s gran and how happy she is to see us and spend time with the children.

    fluggenhofsee swimming lake munster Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up

    Oh, the kids were ill for two days!  The first day Reuben was sick all over the car!  We arrived late on the Monday, like past midnight into Tuesday, and they still got up early before 7am.  So I think lack of sleep and travelling just got to him!  He’s never sick in the car, so we weren’t prepared at all.  We had nothing with us and had to drive back to Ben’s uncle’s where we were staying to get everything washed and Reuben changed!  The next day Reuben was fine, but Bella threw up!  So perhaps it was a bug, we just don't know, but Bella was also fine the next day.

    A poorly Bella:

    A poorly bella in munster germany - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up

    We didn’t do too much whilst there as the children were sick and it’s mostly to visit family, but we did manage a trip to Soltau Therme.  It has a huge pool and kids swimming pool, but the best part is the salt pools.  There’s a separate salt swimming pool which has natural salty mineral water.  There’s a salty pool to swim in both indoors and out, plus there are several Jacuzzi type pools with different temperatures and salt concentrations.  The best thing is they allow kids in all the pools.  I don’t know of anything in the UK that allows children and has so many different types of spa pools.

    Fluggenhofsee munster germany swimming lake beach - Monthly Family Roundup

    We also visited Fluggenhofsee which was walking distance from Ben’s uncle’s house in Munster.  Fluggenhofsee is a clear swimming lake with a beach to two sides – one for families and another for dogs.  On the larger family side there is a great adventure playpark.  There’s a path around the lake for a walk and some animals to see on the other side.  The German children had gone back to school a day or so before we went so we had the place to ourselves!  Oh, one lady did turn up on her bicycle, strip off and go for a swim in the lake!  It’s in the middle of residential areas, so I thought how amazing the locals can just come here for a swim every day for free and surrounded by nature – bliss!

    Soltau Germany - Radish Mouse - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to

    My 32nd birthday

    Whilst we were in Germany it was my 32nd birthday!  We had thought of going to Heide Park which is a huge theme park near where we were staying.  Ben has lots of memories of going as a child so he was keen to revisit.  My birthday was the day Bella was poorly though, so we thought it best to keep her at Ben’s uncles for the morning and visited Ben’s gran after lunch.  We usually just visit the beach when in the UK for my birthday.  Me and Ben did go to Chepstow Quarry at the end of July which was sort of our treat for both our birthdays.  I’m never that fussed about making a big deal out of my birthday.

    Reuben’s last month at nursery

    Reuben has been going to nursery once per week since the end of December 2016.  He was going every Thursday morning.  He also goes to playgroup three mornings, but this is term time only so he did extra at nursery for the summer holidays.  They do a summer club too so Bella was able to go.  They both went for three mornings for the summer holidays and had a great time.  Bella was disappointed when it was her last day, so I’m glad she felt settled there.  Reuben has now left nursery as he’ll be doing 18 hours a week at the playgroup instead.  It’s attached to Bella’s school so it’s more convenient for pickups and drop offs if they’re at the same place.  I felt a little sad on his last day of nursery as it is a lovely place and he’s been going for 9 months.  They may be back there for the summer holidays next year though so it might not be bye forever.

    Catch up with friends

    I have quite a few friends I only really see in the school holidays now, so it was great to catch up with these folk and for all the kids to see each other and play.  We enjoyed park trips, soft play and visiting one another’s houses.  I always love to see how the kids interact with each other and the conversations they have!

    Peppa Pig World

    We went to Peppa Pig world for one day, but we stayed nearby for two nights.  You can read all about our Peppa Pig trip and bargain accommodation here.

    Peppa Pig World Paultons Park - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to

    Peppa Pig World - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 2017

    Rhinoplasty follow up (4 months)

    Once we checked out of the inn after our Peppa Pig weekend, we went to Guildford before returning home.  This is where I had my rhinoplasty and I tied my ‘three’ month check in with our weekend away.  It was meant to be a three month check, but it was actually four months when I went.  It’s healing well and he was impressed with the lack of swelling.  As so much was done to my nose (4.5 hour surgery) he expected a lot more swelling still.  I was also told to imagine my nose with 30% less soft tissue swelling as that will be the final result.  It may also take a little longer than one year for all my swelling to subside.  I already notice such a difference, even in the last month, so it will be great to see it continue to change and the swelling lessen.

    They took photos and it was incredible to see the before and after photos side by side.  I bet it will be even more incredible at my 12 month check!  Unfortunately I lost nearly ALL my photos and only have a handful left.  So annoying!  I’d even made a video diary and I’ve lost the lot.  The doctor is going to send me all his photos so I may, one day, share them on my blog.  I haven’t decided yet.

    A quick look at Guildford Castle:

    Guildford Castle - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 201

    Guildford Castle Surrey - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in Aug

    Me trying to get Reuben to smile with me, but he's saying 'NO MUMMY, look castle!'

    Guildford Castle Visit - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in Augu

    Lunch at Zizzis:

    Zizzi Guildford - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 2017

    2 year wedding anniversary

    Me and Ben have been married for two years!  It’s one of those funny things where it’s gone quickly, but it also feels like forever at the same time!  Our anniversary is the 18th August.  We didn’t do anything special on the day – we actually went to Ben’s work summer party!  But my mum had the kids for one night the following week and so we stayed in a made a curry!  We were going out for a meal, but I think I felt quite tired, plus eating out is tricky as I stopped eating refined sugar this year and I’m vegetarian.  It makes it quite impossible to find food when out as almost everything has sugar added!  I’d been craving a curry, so we decided to make our own and enjoy the house in rare peace and quiet!

    Ben’s work summer party

    Ben’s work put on a family summer party every year – Superdry Fest.  He works at Superdry head office and it’s where we met.  I worked there for almost 10 years before going on maternity leave!  There’s free food, a bar, a stage with a band, lots of inflatables for the children, circus activities and more.  It’s so good of his work to put on such an event.  Only thing is it chucked it down with rain at the start and it felt freezing that day!  I didn’t stay too long as I just felt so cold, so I left them to it.

    Candyfloss nose:

    Superdry Fest - Candyfloss Nose - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up t

    Beach days

    I managed three beach days this year, woohoo!  Two of these were in August.  Usually we only have one trip per year to the beach, so three is great!  It’s still nowhere near enough.  I love the fresh sea air and feel like I can breathe at the beach.  I’d love to live near the beach.  It would be a dream to have a beach in walking distance and we’d certainly make the most of it.

    Weston-super-mud pier, my mum and sis with Bella and Reuben:

    Pic of Weston Pier - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 2

    Vegan fair

    I went to my first vegan fair and it was the first one they’ve held in Cheltenham at the Town Hall.  It was packed!  I had such a great day I’m going to dedicate a whole post to it asap.  Just trying to get round to it!

    Berrows Beach - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 2017 -

    August was a bust hectic month and I did struggle to work and look after the kids more which meant working nearly every evening and abandoning my husband Ben!  I think next year I may have to put them into childcare five mornings per week if I still have as much work on, which I really hope I do as I love working for myself!  It’s also a great way for them to still see lots of friends during the holidays and play lots, so I don’t feel too guilty if we just stick a film on in the afternoon if I have lots of work to do and no friends to visit.  We survived the summer holidays though!  Now we’re settling back into school and playgroup with the first full week of normality starting tomorrow.

    Here are my awesome carrots I pulled up in August:

    Homegrown Carrots - Monthly Family Roundup - What we got up to in August 20

    Did you have a great August?  What did you get up to?  Let me know in the comments.

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     Monthly Family Roundup What we got up to in August 2017