My Alphabetical Year in Review! 2016

My 2016 alphabetical year in review!

Big thanks to the lovely Maria over at Mummy to Logan  for posting the original Alphabetical year in review, and bringing it to my attention. I should be doing housework, but RLT has decided he can’t sleep in his cot today, only in my bed, so I have to sit here and supervise. Feel free to take part also and don’t forget to shout out the previous person for giving you the inspiration the write the post. I’m not tagging anyone, there are too many of these flying around at the moment.

A: Anxiety – I have always suffered from anxiety – whether it is worrying about something just because I feel like the world may end if I don’t worry about something, thinking everyone hates me or worrying about work and losing my job constantly – I just have to be anxious about something all of the time. Pregnancy made this sooo much worse and unfortunately this has continued on in the form of social anxiety when going to mother and baby groups. I have really struggled with these groups and making new friends, I’ve moved back to a town where I haven’t lived since I was 18, so it is like starting all over again. There is one nice girl who I knew from College who has a baby 11 days younger than RLT, so that has made things slightly easier as she is lovely.

B: Brexit – I hate that word and I hate that we don’t know what the outcome of this will be. But I also hate that this happened 7 days after RLT was born when my partner was already sleep deprived, he talked like the world was going to end, for days.

C: Chocolate Creme – As in Fry’s. At one point in my pregnancy I was eating 4 of these a day…..

D: Dads – 2016 was the year of Mark becoming one, my dad being an absolute ledge whenever I’ve needed help – he came to my first RLT scan as it was an emergency one and Mark was in London, he cracked on with sorting our house out because I couldn’t paint and Mark was working in London on launching

mdt and rlt 2016

2016 the year Mark became a daddy to Reuben. This is the first pic of them together











E: Elephants – Is the theme of RLT’s room. His Orla Kiely cot bedding started this trend and it has continued through the framed pictures and stuffed animals. Mark even kindly bought me an Elephant ring by Orla Kiely so that I always have an RLT reminder with me.

Elephants in RLT’s nursery by mandascat










F: Friends – I’ve certainly learned who my friends are this year and those who aren’t. Very interesting who makes the effort when you have a baby.

G: Grapes – Mark inhales this, whenever I bought them throughout my pregnancy, they had gone before I’d had the chance to eat any.

H: Home – We managed to sell our house, which had been on the market for over two years, and buy a new one just before RLT arrived. It was a lot of hard work for Mark, my mum, my dad and I but we managed to get done what we wanted to do before he arrived. You can read more about that here

our new home

Our new home








I: IPaper – Mark went to work in London during my third trimester to launch the iPaper’s website. It was an incredibly stressful time as we were also living with my mum, waiting for our house purchase to go through and then bracing ourselves for the redecorating madness. It was an opportunity too good to miss though, being one of four people who set up a national newspaper website is not something you get to put on your CV everyday, is it?

J: Jules – my mum is a ledge. She will be looking after RLT 3 days a week when I go back to work. She’s done a great job with my niece and nephew, so I know he’s in good hands.

K: Kynren – Mark and I took a night off from parenting duties to go see this, it was absolutely amazing! I’m very proud to be from County Durham as I think it’s beautiful (you have your usual small minded twonks, but it’s very green!) so this choked me up!

L: Leeds – Mark now commutes 90 minutes each way to work in Leeds City Centre. He is the Head of Audience Engagement at a few newspapers including Yorkshire Post, Yorkshire Evening Post and Sheffield Star. It is going to be tough for him, but I hope he gets used to the travel. I’ve lived in Leeds before when I was at university, so it’s a place I know pretty well. I hope to make use of the occasional ride down there to visit the shops! We knew a long commute was a possibility when we bought this house, we decided it was best we were close to childcare so RLT wasn’t spending large amounts of time in cars rather than us being closer to our jobs and having to ferry him around. After having a car accident when he was 10 weeks old, the less time he can spend in the car the better. There are so many idiots on the road.

M: Maternity leave – Maternity leave has been the best time of my life. I’ve never felt so happy and stress free. I don’t recommend having a baby for maternity leave of course, but if you are feeling stressed out by work have a sabbatical. It’s given me time to regroup from somethings that happened at work and in my personal life that I hadn’t had chance to deal with due to being so busy with work. Everyday I wake up, I have a reason to smile and he’s smiling right back at me. It is going to break my heart when I have to go back to work, but I simply can’t do my job on reduced hours nor can I afford the adventures I want to take RLT on without being full-time. Thankfully work have been awesome and have agreed to let me condence my hours in to 4 days and some home working, I am exceptionally grateful to them for this!

Mandascat is another one. My awesome friend, who I work with kindly made me unique illustrations for RLT’s bedroom and a portrait of my cat for my new house, which hangs pride of place in the kitchen/diner! She’s so lovely to have taken the time to do that for me. Great and talented lady.

Orla by Mandascat










N: New beginnings – This year has been an absolute rollercoaster with baby, moving house and Mark moving jobs but now our live is on our terms and it feels great. Our previous home Mark owned with his ex, which was far from ideal – we certainly didnt want RLT growing up with that complexity! So it is just a relief that it was all sorted before he was born.

O: Orla Kiely – The obsession continued in 2016. RLT’S change bag(s) are OK, as are his cot bedding and grobags. I haven’t done too badly on the OK front either, living room and kitchen are OK wallpaper, I’ve got a ring, watch and various bits for the kitchen.

P: Pinterest – Without it, RLT wouldn’t have stripes on his bedroom wall!

Q: Quiet – Our house backs on to a nature reserve, so it is soooo quiet compared to our old house which was near a main road! It is lovely to sit in the garden and not hear cars just sheep and cows!

R: Reuben – Obviously this has been a big one this year! We selected his name before he was born (we told my mum, bro and sis-in-law 6 months before he was here and they weren’t fans) but we went to see New York Giants play in NYC on 20th Dec and the guy who scored the first touchdown was called Ruben (spelt differently obvs) but we thought it was fate. Mark also liked the Reuben sandwich he had at Katz deli, but I’m discounting that from the decision-making process!

rlt just born

Hello world!










S: Sleep – The broken variety, possibly worse than getting no sleep at all. We thought we’d cracked the sleeping through thing at about 10 weeks, but he did it for about a fortnight and never again!

T: Thompson – Mark, Reuben and Orla Kitty’s surname.

U: Uniqlo – Still the best for collaborations. Bought several of the Liberty of London collabs for when I was pregnant. Strange thing is, now i’m not pregnant, I wouldn’t dare wear them as they’re so clingy! Must have gotten a new found body confidence with the bump!

V: Vertigo – I’ve suffered from this on and off for the past year, every time I get congested. I’ve passed out on the landing a few times when going to see RLT on a night!

W: Weaning – We started this on 29th Nov due to RLT trying to grab peoples food and watching everything you ate. Little bit early, just shy of five and a half months. I’ll be honest, I’ve no clue what I’m doing. The baby led weaning stuff looks insane, we’re during purees and when he’s done he has cucumber, carrot or pepper sticks to mess around with. I’m going to look at this properly in a few weeks, I feel he’s too little at the moment.

X: Xylophone – I played on a wooden one on the Stick Man trail at Kielder Castle last week.

Y: Yorkshire Post – I like to follow my other half’s work and give my (unasked for) opinions on things. I’m looking forward to reading the features and magazines that come with the Yorkshire Post on a weekend.

Z: Zebra – RLT has a zebra toy and I can’t for the life of me think of the noise a zebra makes, so poor thing will think it sounds exactly like a horse, just a stripey one.