I recently shared a picture on Instagram of a flat lay I’d created and I found myself getting a few comments and messages about it. This post is a bit of a different topic for me but I thought I’d go through the steps of creating a flat lay for people who wanted to play around with making their own.

1. Collect a few things that you’d like to photograph.


I always have the main reason for the photo, in this case it’s the diary, and then choose a few other props to include to. At the minute I’m enjoying using flowers and plants (fake of course because I can’t keep real ones alive!) in my photos.

 

2. Lay out your background.


I tend to use wallpaper samples as a) they are free and b) you can easily pick and choose depending on the theme. This one is from B&Q and is the Fine Decor White Driftwood Wallpaper. Just roll it out and ensure it’s smooth then you’re ready to start putting together your flat lay.

 

3. Play around with your picture.


Move around your pictures contents until you’re happy with the way it looks. I always like to try it a few different ways as I’m really indecisive!

 

4. Crop your picture.


Crop out the background so your focus is the objects and you can’t see any of the background. I just use the cropping tool in my photo gallery on my phone. Play around until you’re happy.

 

5. Use an editing app to brighten your picture.


My favourite editing app of the moment is ColorStory. You can choose two good brightening filters – POP and LITE BRIGHT. You might want a different colour effect so the filter is really down to personal choice.

 

Once you’ve done all of that you should have a pretty flat lay that you can use for your Instagram, Blog or whatever project you’re working on.

 

 

Does anyone else love a good flat lay? Let me know your top tips if you do.

Little Big Love

Becky xx

So 2017 was supposed to be the year of me getting my shit together. We’re over half way through and I have to say I’m not so sure I’ve really got too far.

To be fair, I have managed to keep a child alive and well, so that is a pretty amazing achievement! We’ve also sorted out some major jobs in the garden, got rid of tons of crap (although there is still plenty to go!) and I’ve been adjusting to being a working mum, so when you put it like that I guess I’ve made some strides!

The big thing I’d like to achieve is getting the cleaning cracked – having a good schedule that I (and hubby) can stick to without it taking up too much time. Is it just me or do you struggle to fit it all in?

Don’t get me wrong, my house isn’t a pug sty (or pig sty – thanks autocorrect), but it does need a good scrub – especially the bathroom!

I’ve been all over Pinterest trying to find good cleaning schedules that fit around our daily life. The ones I’ve found are useful but have so much in them!

I’ve also been watching other people’s routines and tips on YouTube on some of my favourite Mum accounts. I don’t k ow what it is about watching other people clean and tidy their homes but I find it oddly entertaining! It’s not just me is it?

I found that by taking ideas from all of these I could make something that fits for us. This is just daily/weekly jobs here, the deep clean stuff, like scrubbing the skirting boards, vacuuming behind the sofa and all of those things that I’ve seen my mum do haven’t quite made it into my plan yet! But

Weekly Schedule

Monday: Steam clean floors and vacuum downstairs

Tuesday: Dust downstairs and give sink and hob a good scrub

Wednesday: Scrub down stairs loo

Thursday: Put away any laundry/general tidy of each room

Friday: Rest day – once hubby and I are home for work on a Friday we are both pooped so seemed a good day for a rest. You have a rest day at the gym so why not for cleaning too!

Saturday: Scrub en suite and main bathroom

Sunday: Vacuum and dust upstairs. Give inside windows a clean.

 

Daily Routine

Morning – rinse out the shower and spray with Method Daily Shower Spray, empty dishwasher, wipe down after breakfast, quick mop and vacuum of kitchen/dining area and stick on a wash (if a non work day.)

Evening – load dishwasher, wipe down kitchen, rinse out the bath, stick on a wash (on a work day), bleach the toilets, and then sit down and watch Love Island {or whatever new show I’m obsessed with}

Easy right?! I’m pretty certain we’ll stick to it for all a few weeks before we start to falter, but even if we move a few things round/have a few more rest days, using this as a guide we’ll be able to make sure that things don’t build up on us. We do have a handheld Dyson (although one of the older models so its not quite as good as the new ones!) and I love my Wilko antibacterial wipes so do tend to use these each day as needed, but setting out when the big hoover comes out and giving things a good scrub will really help!

I feel like I get some serious mum points planning this out! What are your cleaning routines? Let me know in the comments what works for you and if there is anything I’ve forgotten!

Little Big Love

Becky xx

Well hello there! I thought I’d write a post to review my progress of my goals for 2017 so far.

This is going to be a quick post as basically I have done a big fat nothing! Although I suppose my goals are for the whole year so I shouldn’t beat myself up too much…right?!

Blog

As you’ll see from the blog, putting more time in to it and going self hosted hasn’t happened as I managed a grand total of ZERO blog posts over January…ooops!

January 3rd saw the end of my maternity leave and my return to work. I was really apprehensive about going back and how I would manage but it hasn’t been as bad as I feared. Little loves it at the childminder’s and with my parents (she splits her day between these when I’m at work), which makes me feel more comfortable leaving her. While I have really enjoyed some of the things I’ve been working on and being back with the kids in school, I have struggled to juggle mum stuff, housework, work I’ve been bringing home and the blog and social media accounts.

Getting Out More

Getting out and about has also been a big fat fail. I am running a 10k in April and thought that training would help me get out but I’ve managed 1 run so far! We’ve not planned any days out yet. I think I need to be a bit more proactive there!

 

Sort out the house

Sorting stuff out around the house has been slow, but we have thrown away some things and tidied a few cupboards and draws. I’ve been obsessed with watching organisation and minimalist videos on YouTube recently. While these are great motivation, I find I then get distracted doing something else and then the motivation crawls to the corner of the room and dies! I find that when I do get a bit of spare time all I want to do is sit down and do not a lot as I’m so knackered! Little still isn’t sleeping through every night, although she has got better, which just makes the days so much harder!

Hopefully my February update will be jam packed with all I’ve achieved in my quest to get my shit together! Or not. We’ll see.

How do you get motivated when you really can’t be bothered? Any tips let me know below!

Little Big Love

Becky xx

I’ve recently been thinking about setting some goals for the new year. I don’t go in for this ‘new year, new me’ stuff as, let’s face it, you are who you are, but there are things I want to achieve in the new year to make life that bit easier and feel that bit better.

After reading a fab post from MummytoDex, I decided to write my own, though rather than just blog goals I thought I’d look at goals for life overall.

2016 was a year of highs and lows. Births, marriages, big operations and sadly losing someone close too. It was a year where I have cried and laughed in equal measure. Been happier than I thought possible and more terrified than ever before. It’s a year that I will be glad to see the back of, but remember more fondly than any other.

After a rollercoaster year I’ve decided that 2017 is the year of getting my shit together! I say it every year but this year I am so fed up of saying and not doing. I need to change and I also need to give Big a kick up the arse too as he needs to get his act together at times! He is half teenage boy and half amazing Dad and I feel a bit too much like a nagging Mum with him sometimes!

My 2017 Goals

1. Sort out the house

We were lucky enough to buy a lovely new house this year. We’ve made it our home but I often look around and see piles of crap everywhere (apart from in the nice tidy corners I take photos of!) I need to get more organised in keeping everything tidy and clean. I’ve decided I’m going to have a regular cleaning schedule and have been looking at Pinterest for some ideas. I’m going to be trying to be more minimalist, something which I started to think more about after watching AmyBeingMum’s video on the subject, and get rid of things I keep ‘just in case’. Going back to work and keeping the house tidy will be a challenge but I hope that by having a tidier house it will help keep my mind tidy and less anxious.

My mum bought me this book for Christmas – do you think she was trying to tell me something?

2. Get out more

Sometimes I feel like I spend my life indoors. We go out and see people but we always go to their houses or meet in coffee shops, we go to baby groups but these are always inside and when I do go out for walks they always seem to be short trips to the shop. I sometimes get a bit of cabin fever and often think Little does too, which is why we have some tough days with her. With going back to work.

Last year Big bought me an English Heritage membership (it should have been National Trust but that’s another story!) and do you know how many times we used it? A big fat zero! Not only is it a huge waste of money but shows how little we get out and do things together. As little grows I want us to go on adventures as a family and 2017 is going to be the start of it.

3. Sort out our diet

To look at Big and I, you wouldn’t think we were particularly unhealthy, but we eat a lot of bad food! Friday is usually referred to as Chinese Friday as we tend to have a take away. Before Little we’d have more than one take away a week to be honest. We’ve been better since, mainly thanks to my Mum cooking us meals and me planning occasionally, but next year I’m going to meal plan every week and shop more carefully.

4. The Blog

In the tag line for most of my social media I mention the fact that I am an occasional blogger. I want to take the blog more seriously in the new year. The plan is to go self hosted, redesign to look of the blog, blog at least once a week, make more links with brands I love and increase my readers through interesting, more carefully planned content. I am also toying with the idea of trying my hand with some vlogs, but we’ll have to see if I’m brave enough!

So there you have it. The 4 main goals I’ve got to help me get it together in 2017.

I hope that this time next year I’ll be able to look back and know I’ve worked hard to achieve them. I hope I’ll be in a better place and feeling less ‘mess’ and more like a proper grown up (if there is such a thing!)

What are your goals for the new year? How do you plan on achieving them? 

Little Big Love

Becky xx

First night out post baby…done!

When Big said his work do would include an all expenses hotel stay and meal, I thought Christmas had come early. I love my girl but a night away wth some sleep is my idea of heaven.

We have left her overnight once since she was born to go to a spa, but I haven’t been on a proper night out so I was looking forward to having a bit of fun.

Little decided to come over all poorly that morning, so I was worried we’d not be able to go. After some Calpol, cuddles, milk and plenty of water she perked up and I felt much better about leaving her for a sleepover with Grandma, Grandad and Auntie S.

 

The night

We got to our hotel and found one of those fancy towel sculpture things on the bed.


All I could think was that it looked very phallic. Something which Big helped to demonstrate!


We were treated to drinks in the hotel then went off to a restaurant for a meal. The meal was at 9pm and I felt like a granny thinking that it was far too late to eat, because let’s face it I’m usually in bed by then!

I don’t do well with too much to drink and usually end up with hangovers from hell, so I was determined to be sensible.  Wine and cocktails were mixed, but I had lots of water too so managed to wake up hangover free. I can’t say the same for Big who is currently snoring next to me!

Feeling very tired, I left him in the hotel bar and disappeared off to bed before midnight like Cinderella.

It was a lovely night, being Becky and not Mum. I got to have adult conversation, though granted plenty of it was kid related, and we had fun as husband and wife.

It made me realise how important it is for us to get out together and get out of the baby bubble. I’ll definitely be making sure we plan more nights out next year, though not too many as we’re not in our 20’s any more! It also made me realise the importance of water – drink lots of it, it’s magic stuff!

Do you plan date nights? How often do you find yourself getting out child free? 

Little Big Love

Becky xx