Family Day Out- Nairobi Animal Orphanage

Happy Monday mummies, I hope you all had a wonderful and relaxing weekend. One of our new year’s resolutions was to enjoy every moment and try to spend more family time together. Life has a way of making you so busy that you find yourself falling into a routine. As some of you may already know we live in the sunny Nairobi, Kenya.We decided to go this weekend to the Nairobi Animal Orphanage located in Langata.

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The animal orphanage is very similar to your average zoo however what makes it special is that all the animals there have been rescued from the wild at a very young age.

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Entry fees for Kenyans is 215 ksh (approximately $2) and for Kenyan residents around $3. surprisingly if you are a tourist entry fee is $22. We were greeted by the Maasai warriors at the entrance. The Maasai tribe is known for their unique culture and they mostly live next to the game parks in Maasai Mara and Serengeti (Tanzania).

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Most of the animals were caged; each cage had a description of the animal and a little story of how they were rescued. I loved how they also included each animal’s name in Swahili.ao-post-3

The only animal running freely around the park are the monkeys, we were warned to be alert because they are very cheeky and might snatch a bag or hat. Just a little “monkey business”.ao-post-4

It was the first time baby E has seen all these different types of animals. I’m glad that he got the chance to see the Africa lion because that is his favourite animal. Some of you might recall that his dad nicknamed him Simba (lion in Swahili) when he was a newborn.ao-post-5

We saw the leopard (Chui in Swahili) and I found it fascinating that they are able to kill prey heavier than themselves. We also got the chance to see a cheetah and learn that its name comes from a Hindu word that means spotted one. It was a beautiful family day out and we enjoyed every second.

Have you ever been to kenya? Would you like to visit one day?

Don’t forget to leave me a comment and follow my blog, InstagramTwitter

Thanks for stopping by

Petite Pudding
A Mum Track Mind
3 Little Buttons
Mummuddlingthrough

Our First Family Vacation

This is my first post in 2017, how exciting! If you follow me on instagram you would know by now that we went away on our first family vacation. We went to the coastal city of Mombasa. The city is one of the most important tourist destinations in Kenya and it attracts thousands of tourists each year.

To reach our destination we took our very first road trip with our 14 months old. It was along 8-hour drive but baby E was busy watching cartoon, napping and looking out of the window. We had a quick stop before we reached our destination to grab lunch and quick nappy change, etc… The pacifier was our best friend during our road trip; I carried all of baby E’s dummies with us just incase because there is nowhere to wash them in the car so I preferred just giving him a clean sterile one each time he drops his dummy.

We stayed for around 10 days in North coast, Nyali to be particular, in a beautiful seafront villa. The great thing about Mombasa is the amazing view of the ocean in the morning. Now that I’m back in Nairobi I’m surely missing that view.

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We went to Haller Park , it is a nature trail with lots of animals to see such as the crocodiles, Reptile Park with various types of snakes and fish farm. There is also feeding time which allows the park’s visitors to feed some of the animals. We were able to feed the giraffes.

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We went swimming in both the pool and beach. It was baby E’s first time swimming and he really enjoyed himself. We went on a glass boat and watched all the fish in the deep ocean. My husband even swam with the fish like a pro. Baby E enjoyed looking at all the different types of fish and loved how colourful they were.

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It was a fun packed vacation. If you ever visit Kenya you should consider visiting Mombasa for a few days. We definitely had a nice end to 2016 and a fantastic start to 2017. Thank you so much to all the new followers for subscribing to my blog. Happy New Year to all my lovely readers. May this year bring you health and good fortune.

Now that you know all about my holiday, How was yours?

Thanks for stopping by

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday
Mummuddlingthrough

Quick Update Before The End Of The Year

I’ve been M.I.A for a little while from my blog but I have a very valid excuse this time… a teething baby! only a few months ago I was so anxious for baby E to get his first tooth; now what I would do to have my happy toothless baby with his big gummy smiles. Incase you missed me…I missed you too and here is what we’ve been up to while I was away.

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  • We tried out so many new restaurants and new meals these past few weeks.
  • We attended not one but two weddings, this includes attending my first Catholic Church wedding.
  • We celebrated my husband’s birthday and in a few weeks we will be celebrating our 2nd wedding anniversary.
  • My sister in law came to Kenya for a visit so the past 2 weeks have just been bonding time.

Over all I think we grew stronger and closer as a family. We made a lot of great memories.

Baby

I know I stopped doing baby updates when baby E turned one and now he is 14 months. Where did the time go?

  • Baby E is now walking and running around
  • He is a typical toddler and he even throws tantrums when things don’t go his way.
  • He was 3 teeth and the 4th cut through so we are having a cranky baby who wakes up during the night to be comforted.
  • He still loves his pacifier.
  • He loves billy and bam bam

Over all he is well and healthy. He is growing so fast and keeps us on our toes. We are drained by his bedtime.

Me

  • I took a short blogging break however; I have been following other blogs.
  • I am loving a few new series lately.
  • I’m enjoying scented candles
  • I joined the gym and went on a healthy journey.
  • I finally got my driving license (better late than never), in fact now I can drive a manual car…Talk about skills
  • I’ve been featured on Mess & Merlot for her new blog series “she loves herself”
  • Last post Dear Internet…Please Stop With The Mummy shaming was one of the top 10 online reads on Life Motherhood & Everything

I mainly spend my days chasing baby E and my evening catching up on series and getting some sleep.

This blog has been such an important part of my stay at home mum life so I want to thank all those who have been supporting me in this journey.

What have you been up to lately? Any major changes in your life you would want to share!

I love hearing from you.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Dear Internet…Please Stop With The Mummy shaming

Something I extremely hate (yes … Hate, I know it is such a strong word) is mum shaming other mums. In this era of social media it made it so easy to not only judge others but also voice your opinion in such rude manners.

I haven’t personally faced it however I witnessed it so many times in different platforms even on mummy forums and it is disgusting. Here are the topics the I have noticed lead to a lot of judgement and mummy shaming.

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Breastfeeding and bottle-feeding

This has been a topic of debate for a very long time. Unfortunately there is no winning. Mothers who bottle feed their babies maybe subjected to mum shaming and any viral photo or post on bottle feeding I can assure you that some mom on the comment section will mention “Breast is best”.

On the other hand if a mum posts a photo of her breastfeeding her baby she might get backlash for publicizing something that according to some mothers should be private, especially some Muslim mothers. A few months ago a famous Muslim Blogger and Youtuber Dina Torkia posted a photo of herself breastfeeding her daughter on Instagram and received a huge amount of criticism even though she was fully covered and her skin wasn’t even showing.

A mother who extensively breastfeeds her child past toddlerhood gets not only criticism but also all kind of profanity and rude comments on her post and got even interviewed on national television because of what people think is bizarre.

Cry it out method/ Ferber method

Some mummies resort to this method so that they can rest or for their babies to learn to self-sooth themselves. A lot of mothers said that it worked for them but if you write a post on it on social media rest assure another mother will criticize you and tell you to your face that you’re “heartless” or “a bad mom”.

Car seat

A poor mum on one from one mummy app I’m on in an app once told us that she was mum shamed and plain bullied by other mums when she mentioned that she changed her baby’s car seat from rear facing to forward facing before turning one.

 Baby-food: Home made VS store bought

There are really good quality store bought baby foods and if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands to prepare your baby’s meals they are a great alternative.

Some mothers online shamed a first time mum for buying her baby’s food instead of making it!! Are some of these people on social media serious?

Vaccinations

I have never seen people become so aggressive about any other topic online especially mothers. Some strongly believe that vaccinations have negative side effects on babies and choose not to vaccinate.

Funny enough some innocent mothers get shamed online for something completely out of their control, like the size of their bump or child’s weight and of course not loosing those extra pounds after having a baby. Some mummies choose to answer back and defend themselves and some suffer in silence after being bullied online.

I wish we could all be nice to each other; motherhood is hard enough without the extra dose criticism. There is no perfect mum out there; everyone is trying to do their best.

Do you think that some mummies online are simply bullies or just practicing freedom of expression? Have you ever personally faced mum shaming?

Thanks for stopping by

3 Little Buttons
Mummuddlingthrough

One Year Old Gift Haul

I’m back! I know I haven’t posted in awhile but this mummy has been extremely busy. I truly missed the blogosphere and the blogging community these past weeks, the good news is I’m back to regular blog-posts (fingers crossed).

As most of you know we celebrated my son’s first birthday last month. As parents we all get invited to at least one children’s birthday a year and buying a gift that is age appropriate and that the child’s parent will appreciate can be a little tricky. Here are some of the great gifts baby E received for his birthday and it can give you an idea of what to buy the next time you are invited to a baby’s first birthday. These are in no particular order we loved all the gifts baby E got and we thank everyone for their thoughtful gifts.

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Cute outfits

I personally believe that you can never have enough cute outfits for your little one especially dressy ones for special events. It is best to buy size 2-3 if the baby is chunky or tall. The last thing you want is to buy clothes that are too small.

 Teething book

If you read my baby’s updates you would know that my son got his first tooth a few days shy of his first birthday. Teething toys are great for babies when they are teething. Buy such a gift if you are close to the family and know that their baby is a late teether like baby E.

 Bath toys

To keep bath time entertaining for the little ones and keep them occupied.

Scooby doo stuffed toy

Most babies like stuffed toys; baby E actually picked Scooby doo himself even though he hasn’t watched a single Scooby doo episode.

My 123 mini library

It is a collection of mini books that are light for babies to hold and carry. This gift is great way to introduce numbers to young babies.

Colours and Shapes book

This is a lovely book with different colours and shapes. Books are always a wonderful gift regardless of age.

Storybook rhymes

It is a singing book with some of our favourite children’s songs. It sings a different song every time you flip the page. It also has the option to mute it or reduce the volume, which is fantastic.

Fisher and Price 2 in 1 activity chime ball

This is one of E’s favourite toys now. It is an owl with three colourful balls inside that the baby can remove and play with. Baby E played with this so much that he actually misplaced one of the balls already.

Feeding high chair

We wanted to get baby E a feeding chair for the longest time and we are so grateful that he got one on his birthday that matches our home décor.

Mega blocks

Blocks are a fantastic gift because it helps with eye and hand coordination and it also encourages creative thinking.

 Happy Blocks Car

It has 6 large pieces, which makes it easy for one year olds to hold and play with .

Baby’s first bicycle

This was a gift from his grandfather, unfortunately baby E used about 2 times so far because we live in an apartment and there isn’t plenty of space.

A colourful baby comforter

Who doesn’t love comforters, right!

What was the favourite gift your child has ever received? Do you enjoy reading similar posts? Should I do more haul blog posts!

Don’t forget to leave me a comment & to follow my blog, Instagram, Twitter

Your feedback means the world to me.

Thanks for stopping by.

Mummuddlingthrough
You Baby Me Mummy
Petite Pudding

I’ve Been Featured

Being a fairly new blogger any recognition I receive I highly appreciate it. I love being a part of the blogging community and I feel that slowly my blog is starting to get noticed. When I started my blog I didn’t think I will get many followers or readership but now I enjoy seeing the numbers of my followers and blog views increase in a short period.

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Last month I was featured Amaliah.co.uk which is a British modest fashion website; that is run by two sisters . Along side the blog the website also has the option to shop for modest fashion from famous brands such as ASOS and Zara. Amaliah.co.uk has a series about motherhood on their blog that I’m proud to be part of.

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My favourite question was: “what would you have told yourself as a mother now looking back?”

My respond was: “There will be many sleepless nights and some days you will feel so drained but seeing your little baby’s smile will make it all worth it. A lot of people will advise you please trust your instinct as a mother and don’t listen or pay attention because it will drive you crazy if you try to please everyone. Just remember he is your baby and you know what is best for him”.

I also answered a number of interesting motherhood related questions such as the meaning of motherhood and one thing I learned since becoming a mother. I’m pretty sure most of my followers by now know a thing or two about me but if you want to know more please check out my full feature on Amaliah.co.uk ’s #MotherhoodMoments 

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This month a fellow blogger and Instagram friend Gorgeous George’s Mama was generous enough to feature my post Things I’d do differently on my next pregnancy! on her blog. I enjoyed reading all the posts she selected to feature.

Check out the lovely GorgeousGeorgesMama ’s blog she documents precious moments with her son and takes us through her journey. I love coming across other mummy blogs. I guarantee you that you will enjoy her blog. If you are interested in reading the post I was featured in click here.

Were you ever featured in other blogs? Did you participate in guest posts or blog series? Feel free to link your featured posts below in the comment section and mention blogs that are hosting blog series.

I would love to hear from you; your comments mean the world to me.

Thanks for stopping by

 

Cuddle Fairy
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

African Safari Birthday party

Venue: Grandparent’s house- My husband’s parents house

Date and time: Saturday 15th,October, 2016

Theme:

Safari/ African theme because we are currently living in Kenya and I thought it would be a memorable theme for a first birthday party.

Cake:

3 tiered cake (chocolate fudge, vanilla and carrot cake). It was safari animals inspired with a lion and number one on top. I chose the lion because his dad sometimes calls baby E simba “lion”- check out his cake on my Instagram, if you don’t follow me then you should!

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Disclaimer: I didn’t take any of the photos these were the ones I was sent by our family and friends. My husband was a little camera shy that’s why he didn’t appear as much as me in the photos.

E’s birthday outfit:

To suit the theme we got our baby African attire with a matching hat. It was custom made for his birthday.

outfit2Guest list: closest family and friends.

Entertainment:

The ladies chit chatted, the boys watched the Arsenal match, the kids played around and E was running in his walker.

Would you guys be interested in a birthday gift haul? It can give you some ideas of what to get a one year old boy when you are invited to a birthday or when your little one turns one.

Thanks for stopping by

Mummuddlingthrough
DomesticatedMomster
Hot Pink Wellingtons
A Mum Track Mind
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12 months baby update- Baby E turns one

I’m so excited and overwhelmed that my baby has turned one. This year flew by so quickly. The first year of baby E’s life had laughter, tears and sleep deprivation. I can now say we made it and survived! Here’s my baby’s 12 months update

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Feeding:

There was a huge change in baby E’s feeding, We introduced cow’s milk last week, I was scared after I did some research because it is not a good source of iron which can cause babies to have anemia if they don’t eat foods that are rich in iron. This month we are aiming to give him enough food with iron and we reduced his bottles to only 3 feeds a day because cow milk is not considered a meal (where as formula is).

Weight and height:

He unfortunately lost a little bit of weight due to falling sick; he was 10.9 kgs 3 days before his birthday. He’s getting very tall and now reaches the top of our dinning table and kitchen counter when he is in his walker and both are very high.

Clothes size:

He wears 12-18months clothes and he outgrew most of his 6-12 tops. He still wears size 5 shoes.

Personality:

He’s very social and loves people. He is learning so much now and loves to play with his toys. He’s still very active and bubbly. Sometimes he throws mini tantrums if he doesn’t get things his way so now I can say I have a toddler in the house.

 Milestones:

  • FIRST TOOTH: if you read any of my pervious updates you understand my excitement that he finally got his first tooth because I was extremely worried.
  • Sleeping though the night, which is amazing, we all get to rest and have a good night’s sleep.
  • Taking his first 2 steps so far so we are hoping soon he will get the courage to walk.

Dislikes:

  • Getting his throat or teeth checked by anyone, he closes his mouth shut.
  • Medication with a syringe he hates taking it.
  • When daddy has to leave the house he would cry.
  • Cupcakes believe it or not he wasn’t impressed with his birthday chocolate cupcake.

Loves:

  • His walker
  • Our phones
  • Talking
  • His pacifier
  • Balloons
  • Dancing
  • Hugs and kisses

Highlights of the month:

  • His first birthday
  • He had a professional photo-shoot
  • Had his first kiddie meal, which he didn’t really eat much of so mummy ended up eating it!
  • Grandpa got him his first bicycle
  • His uncle got him a new highchair
  • Received new gifts for his birthday

Lowest points of this month:

  • He became sick a few days before his birthday, he was having a runny stomach and as any first time mum I was counting how many poopy nappies he had in a 24hour period because I was told anything more than 4 the baby might be at risk of dehydration. So we ended rushing him to the hospital in the middle of the night, he was slightly dehydrated however all he needed to take some ORS drinks for a day.
  • Teething and all the discomfort that comes with it.

What we did on his special day:

  • We got him a party hat and a birthday badge/ ribbon.
  • Mummy and daddy sang for him and gave him 100 kisses while giving him his birthday gifts from us.
  • He had a cupcake after breakfast with one candle. He wasn’t a big fan of the cupcake.
  • We went out to a restaurant for lunch where he had his first kiddie meal.
  • The restaurant staff also sang for him a birthday song, which was really nice.
  • He had a tiny bit of ice cream with sprinkles to celebrate turning one.
  • We went to the play-zone and he went on different rides.

Happy first birthday my little munchkin, love you past the moon and all the way to the stars.

If you want watch the video I posted on my Instagram dedicated to my little boy click here

Feel free to check my baby’s previous updates that I posted on my blog here are quick links below:

11 Months Baby Update

10 Months Baby Update

9 Months Baby Update

8 Months Baby Update

Make sure to come back to read about his birthday party that we are throwing him over the weekend.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

I’ve Been Nominated …

I’m excited to announce that I’ve been nominated for a blogging award. I want to thank the lovely Iman from “And then she said” for nominating me for the Liebster Award. And then she said has reviews, parenting tips, recipes and some lovely DIYs. My favourite post from “and the she said” is Six Things New Mums Feel & How To Cope I highly recommend new mummies to have a read.

Back to the award if you are a blogger I’m sure you came across one or two of these post before, I sure have myself. The Liebster award is dedicated to new blogs and as some of you may know I’m fairly new to the blogosphere.

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Here are my answers to Iman’s questions:

  1. What have you found most challenging about blogging since you started?

Finding the time to write posts especially with an adventurous almost one year old around. I found it also a little tricky starting my blog because I wasn’t very familiar with WordPress but I’m slowly learning.

  1. What’s your pet peeve?

My biggest pet peeve that really annoys me when people think they know my name better than I do and keep asking me if I misspelled it or saying it wrong! Really I’m pretty sure I know how to spell & pronounce my own name. You have no idea how many times I had this conversation since moving to Kenya!!

  1. Have you ever considered changing your name? What would you change it to?

Hahaha relating to question #2 I have so many times however as I grew older I learned to love my name.

If I changed my name I would go with Sama, which means sky in Arabic, and it is close to my actual name Samsam

  1. What is your biggest accomplishment?

On a personal level becoming a mother is a huge accomplishment for me. On a professional level finishing my master’s degree in Human resource management is a close second! Even though I’m currently a stay at home mum I’m proud of my educational achievement.

  1. How open are you to trying new foods? On a scale of 1 to 10 – 1 being not at all and 10 being always!

I’m guessing around 8, I love trying new cuisines as long as it is not something crazy like insects or dog meat which I hear are considered a delicacy in some parts of the world.

  1. What would you do with your last £1?

Most likely buy a balloon for my son because he loves them so much.

  1. Who is your favourite author and why?

Yasmin Mogahed, most of my readers might not be familiar with her work but she has an amazing book called “Reclaim your heart” and I read it cover to cover several times. I came across Yasmin’s writing during a tough time in my life and her book made me look at things differently. My copy of “Reclaim your heart” is even signed by her and I attended a seminar she had in Australia a few years ago.

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  1. Describe your home in three words.

Love, Harmony, Laughter

  1. What is your guilty pleasure?

Milkshakes (all flavours) I love them so much even though I know they are the main factor of my weight gain.

  1. What’s the best blog post you’ve ever written? 

Motherly Advice From All Over The World

I love this post because it is a collection of advice from mothers living across the globe. I was overwhelmed at how many people were willing to help me write it.

  1. If you have to pick one season to have the entire year – what would it be?

Spring because the weather is just so perfect.

Incase you want to participate or nominate someone for this award the rules are:

  • Write a blog post about your nomination and thank the person who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
  • Answer the questions the person who nominated you asked you in his/her blog post.
  • Nominate 5-11 other starting bloggers who you think deserve this award, and come up with 11 questions of your own for them to answer.
  • List these rules in your blog post.

As I mentioned earlier I’m a newbie blogger so unfortunately I don’t know of 11 new bloggers that I can nominate for a Liebster Award so I nominate any new blogger who comes across my post.

I want to know why did you start your blog?

Thanks for stopping by

DomesticatedMomster
You Baby Me Mummy
A Mum Track Mind
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Husband Appreciation Post

It is so easy in the midst of nappy changes and chasing a baby to forget to take a minute to be grateful & appreciative. Today I want to dedicate this post to my loving husband because becoming parents truly made me appreciate him so much more.

*Readers be warned this post is extremely cheesy!

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When I was pregnant with my son my husband took me to most of my doctors appointments and scans (I say most because I traveled to Australia when I was pregnant but luckily he did manage to come during my last trimester and accompany me to the rest my midwife’s appointments). When I was in the waiting room for my appointments I saw many pregnant women who didn’t have that support unfortunately; which made me feel very blessed that he was there.

When I was giving birth to our son he was in the delivery room, I know most of you will wonder why is that so special because most dads in the West are expected to enter with their wives/ partners. My husband is born in Saudi and raised in Kenya. In Saudi (I don’t think it is even permissible for the men to enter the delivery room, correct me if I’m wrong!) and in Kenya it is not common even though recently more and more younger fathers are willing to enter to support their wives. There is a huge misconception that if I man enters the delivery room he won’t be attracted to you (which is complete nonsense if you ask me). When I tell people that my husband witnessed the birth of our son I get so many shocking responses. I’m grateful that he didn’t refuse like any typical African/ Muslim man and I’m thankful he was there with me.

I’m the last-born in my family and I had very limited experience with newborns and babies until I became a mother. My husband on the other hand had zero experience in that field. This soon changed! He learned how to change nappies and he helps me change our son whenever I’m busy. When we started baby E on formula my husband was extremely supportive, he would prepare his bottles and feed him. In fact he still does that which I love. This includes the night feeds because our son still doesn’t sleep through the night.

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He is honestly the ideal partner, I was so scared of all the pressures that come with being a new mum especially after I moved to Kenya and I no longer had my mum’s support. Surprisingly my husband became my greatest support when it comes to the baby. He gives me a break and lets me have “me time” whenever I need it. He takes the baby and they play together while I rest or watch a show. Some morning when our son wakes up extra early he would usually let me get an extra hour of sleep and he would take care of the baby. Change his nappy, give him breakfast and play with him (Just perfect).

My husband also takes care of all the bills and our finances; which is great because as first time mum I feel like I have a lot on my plate. If he left me to handle the bills, rests assure that I would forget one or the other. I can say thanks to him we still have water running in our tabs and we are not living in darkness. Some days I don’t feel like cooking but thankfully my husband always comes to the rescue. He would order for us take out and he would always ask me “ what do you feel like eating today?” he would always make me pick what we are going to eat. Luckily we have very similar taste in junk food, hahaha

Last weekend my husband planned a date for us, which honestly melted my heart, he arranged with my in laws to take care of our son while we go watch a movie. The last time I watched a movie in the cinema was early last year!! That’s how long it’s been. To make things more prefect we went to watch a movie of my choice and I wanted to watch Bridget Jones’s baby. He didn’t complain once about the movie. He made the whole day about me, which made me so happy. I felt like we were newly weds again.

I’m blessed to be married to such a wonderful guy. I pray that all the ladies out there find love like I did. If you are reading this and already have a special someone in your life I pray that your relationship will last and blossom.

Does your husband/partner help you with the baby? After becoming parents do you still have date nights?

Thanks for stopping by,

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A Mum Track Mind
Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday