A snowdrop walk at Rode Hall

Flo in snowdrops

One day last week we set off on an adventure with my friend Karen and some of her Mini Travellers and spent the day at Rode Hall and Gardens in Cheshire. The gardens are home to a beautiful snowdrop walk, which is perfect at this time of year to see the cute little white flowers peeping through in a sign that spring is on its way. The ... read this

How I tried ‘tapping’ out the trauma

Julia tapping http://rainbeaubelle.com

I like to think I have a pretty open mind when it comes to complementary therapies. I don't have any regularly, but I have tried a few different methods at various stages in my life. I've had reflexology, massage therapy, reiki and acupuncture, but I'd never tried tapping until a couple of weeks ago. I first heard about tapping - also known as ... read this

Me and Mine – A Portrait for January 2016

Family portrait February 2015 http://rainbeaubelle.com

January - you have been long! Doesn't it seem so long since Christmas? I'll be so glad to see the start of February and will be welcoming the lighter mornings, brighter evenings and that one step further towards spring. For the past maybe two weeks I've been wondering when this month is going to come to an end, not because it has been ... read this

Why it’s good to challenge yourself

Do the things you think you can't do http://rainbeaubelle.com

'Do the thing you think you cannot do' - sounds terrifying doesn't it, but the more you think about it, the more it makes sense. Some of the biggest achievements of my life have been things I thought I couldn't do - but I think that self-doubt makes the victory all the sweeter. Of course there have been times when I've had to do the things I ... read this

Four favourite smoothie recipes for kids

Banana, milk, oats and honey smoothie

All this smoothie making is all well and good if you're into making green juice, mixing up chia seeds and curly kale, but will that get your little ones asking for more? In my experience, probably not. My children both like helping to make drinks in my Nutri-Bullet, but they usually involve putting in lots of fruit and not much else. When I've ... read this

Geronimo – our first kids’ festival

Punch and Judy Geronimo

I've been to a few festivals over the years - last time I went to Glastonbury I managed to twist my ankle dancing in a mud-stuck welly, less said about that the better - but I've never made it to one with the kids. I love the look of the crazy dressing up at Bestival, have always fancied letting the little ones go wild at Wilderness, but what ... read this

Six months and looking for inspiration

Notebook and flowers http://rainbeaubelle.com

It's funny how these little milestones don't really mean anything but when you sit and think about them, they feel so major. It's been six months now since Rog died. That's six months without my best friend, the one who made me laugh every day, right up until the day he passed away. Six months without the one I wanted to spend the rest of my life ... read this

Christmas balloons for daddy

Balloons on Red Rocks http://rainbeaubelle.com

On the day of Roger's funeral, when the service was over and we were in the sunny garden of the hotel where we held his wake, Sam, Florence and their cousin Ava let go of a balloon each in his memory. Those balloons were a symbol for our children that they were giving something to their dad, that they could still reach him and that he was out ... read this

Five under £5 for January

Five under £5 January http://rainbeaubelle.com

It's the first of my Five under £5 posts of the year and the second time I've asked others to join in, so if it's the first time you are here then welcome, and if you took part last month then thank you! I started these posts as a fun way of showing five little things I'd bought that month for under a fiver, and carried it on as, well, it's an ... read this

The first week of the year…. check!

Pottery painting http://rainbeaubelle.com

The first week of the year is over and it seems to be going ok so far *touch wood*. I didn't make any real resolutions - more like reminders to live a certain way and not be too hard on myself, to try to make 2016 a little easier than 2015. I'm not into self-deprivation this year, more self-preservation, so thankfully giving up alcohol for a ... read this

Why I’m not making any resolutions

Brighter in 2016 http://rainbeaubelle.com

Rewind to New Year's Eve last year, and I was sitting in my kitchen, waiting for my husband to come home from his late shift, having a glass of wine and trying to write a blog post reflecting on our year. After many failed attempts at emotional, sad outpourings, I decided to scrap what I'd written and go for a lighter, more positive take on New ... read this

Me and Mine – a Portrait for December

Sam and Flo with new bikes 2015 http://rainbeaubelle.com

Joining in with the Me and Mine family portrait project means the last week or so of every month is a kind of challenge to get a family photo which is passable and where all three of us are looking at the camera - or at least two out of three anyway. This month, it was a little easier as we took so many photos over Christmas and it's been quite ... read this

Merry Christmas to you and yours

Christmas hats - http://rainbeaubelle.com

Well hello, Christmas Day, I made it this far and actually this morning has been really nice if a little emotional at times! It is very hard to feel sad when you have two happy little faces around you - and your mum and dad on hand to help with the unwrapping, provide breakfast, hugs and cups of tea! I just wanted to wish you all a very Merry ... read this

Treats and distractions

Tea flatly http://rainbeaubelle.com

Of all the pieces of advice which have stuck in my head, this has been my favourite one - to get through you need treats and distractions. It came from a very kind lady who commented on one of my blog posts, I think not long after Roger was diagnosed with cancer. I have had so many lovely comments on my writing, I am grateful for each and every one ... read this