We’re only halfway through January and already things are beginning to build up for the year ahead. We have mini holidays planned, family events and all sorts in store for 2019 and I’m looking forward to documenting our adventures as they unfold. 2018 was a great year for us too; it was jam packed from start to finish and I have some great memories. I’ve been tagged by Jayne from Sticky Mud And Belly Laughs to do the top 7 challenge. This challenge is about sharing my top 7 posts from 2018, 7 things I’ve loved in 2018 and 7 things I’m looking forward to this year.

My Top 7 Posts From 2018

We were fortunate enough to have a few Press Trips throughout 2018. One of my favourites was our Day Trip To The Isle Of Wight. We’d just had baby Oscar, so it was really nice to enjoy some couple time and explore somewhere new together.

My Top 7 Posts From 2018 at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk

Welcoming baby Oscar was a very quick blog post but I still enjoyed showing off my newborn to the world. I can’t believe that was written in July – it seems like only yesterday he was my little 9lb 2oz baby. Now he’s huge! He needs to stop growing.

My Top 7 Posts From 2018 at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk

Surviving my pregnancy wasn’t so easy though and I suffered terribly from Hyperemesis Gravidarum for about 5 months. I was one of the lucky ones and m HG eventually cleared up, allowing me a few months peace from the sickness to enjoy being pregnant. However, during the first two-thirds of my pregnancy, I suffered badly and my mental health took a huge dent. It was a really difficult time in my life.

Surviving Life With Hyperemesis Gravidarum at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk My Top 7 Posts From 2018 at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk

As I started to feel better, I made it my mission to get out and about and do as much as I could with Luke before his baby brother came along. One of my favourite adventures was Hunting for the Highway Rat at Alice Holt Forest. I just love the photos I took so much!

My Top 7 Posts From 2018 at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk

It wasn’t all outdoor adventures though. Being pregnant took its toll and I found that walking around became really difficult for me. Everything. Hurt. So I needed a way to spend time with Luke and keep him occupied during the days when heading out to the woods was just too much. I was fortunate enough to review Mrs Mactivity’s Learning Resources. This is one of my favourites because, not only are the resources top-notch, but I also got some excellent feedback from the company which really made my day and boosted my confidence.

Another brand I really enjoyed collaborating with was Simply Be, in particular, I adore my ‘Loving My Postpartum Body With Simply Be’ blog post. Again, this post had a great reception which was awesome as I did spend some time trying to work out how to best photograph the brilliant products from Simply Be. It wasn’t the first time I had written about body confidence or lingerie but it’s one of my favourites and seemed to resonate with a lot of my readers.

Simply Be autumn/winter 2018 collection at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk My Top 7 Posts From 2018 at https://lukeosaurusandme.co.uk

Finally, a great guest post from Jon at The Money Shed – Money Saving Parenting Hacks. Now that I am a mum of two, I need all the money saving hacks. This post is brilliant and does quite well on Pinterest.

7 Things I Loved In 2018

  1. I loved mine and Mikey’s mini babymoon. We didn’t have the money to go all out on a nice trip somewhere sunny, but it turns out that thanks to the UK’s heatwave, we didn’t need to splash the cash. Instead, we headed down to Eastbourne and stayed in a hotel on the beach front. We visited Brighton on the way home and spent a few days just chilling out, child free, for the last time in a long, long time!
  2. Spending SO much time at the beach! It’s a shame I was the size of a whale, but I LOVED swimming in the sea while I was pregnant. It was so good to be able to catch some rays, swim with Luke and Mikey and enjoy some nice family time. It also felt so nice to take some pressure off my back.
  3. Oscar being born! Of course giving birth is a challenge but I loved Oscar’s birth and I don’t think it could have gone any better. I haven’t yet written my birth story, but compared to Luke’s, it felt amazing and I feel really proud and empowered whenever I think about it. We had a great little water birth, in total I was in the pool for about an hour and a half and then little Oscar was in my hands. We spent the day chilling out in a room all to ourselves with a big double bed before heading home for tea. As far as births go it was perfect.
  4. Spending time as a family of four. Oscar was born right at the beginning of the summer holidays, so we were able to adjust and enjoy being a family of four relatively quickly. Mikey had two weeks paternity and a week of holiday booked, meaning we had three weeks of bliss to spend together. Honestly, it felt like a dream and I remember feeling just so, so happy with my little family. We went on long walks, visited friends and family, and attended events – it was magical.
  5. Mini Rolls. I discovered that I really, really, really love Cadbury’s Mini Rolls. Possibly too much…
  6. How amazingly well Luke is doing at school. When he went into Year R, myself and his new teachers were all apprehensive about how he’d cope. It turns out that none of us needed to worry, and he took to school straight away. He loves it so much and is so curious about the world around him. He loves learning, he loves showing off, playing with his friends and writing. So. Much. Writing.
  7. Making up with old friends. Not a lot to say about this other than I spent most of 2018 feeling sad about falling out with one of my friends. Towards the end of the year I decided it might be time to stop being so stubborn and reach out. I’m glad I did.

7 Things I Am Looking Forward To In 2019

  1. I’m looking forward to all our family adventures. I want to explore new woodlands and local places – maybe even travel a bit further a field and have some fun days out with the kids.
  2. Our family summer camping holiday! I’m still not sure whether we’re heading up to Scotland or down to Cornwall.
  3. Visiting Mikey’s grandpa in Germany.
  4. Oscar’s first birthday!
  5. Losing the baby weight and feeling a bit more confident on the beach this summer.
  6. I’m making more of a conscious effort to see friends and loved ones, so I’m looking forward to our little monthly meet ups at the pub or Costa…wherever the bank account takes me!
  7. The summer holidays. Although I am so looking forward to having both my kids at home, I’m also looking forward to the 6 weeks school-run free!

I’m now going to tag 7 people to do the challenge! I have tagged:

Darren from Days Out Now

Kate from Kate On Thin Ice

Samantha from Stressed Mum

Yaya from My Dreamality

Phil from Parenting Philst

Clare from Freddie’s Mummy UK

Tiney from Growing Clan