Monday, 4 June 2012

Patio Dates

Aloha Sprinklerinos,

I shall have a flurry of beauty posts I promise, but today is a lifestyle one, because I'm in a lifestyle mood. Can't get simpler than that, can you?

Matt works full time as a Teacher and regularly brings his work home. I work full time as a Mummy, Homemaker and Vlogger/Blogger Extraordinaire (I like to think anyway hahaha) and Baby Glitter works full time as a dribbly, playful, mess maker. Mix that with a social life, boring errands, sleeping and breathing and you won't find a lot of time in bewteen.


A couple of weeks ago Matt and I realised we really weren't spending enough quality time together. Yes, we live together but it was getting to a point where we were just co-existing rather than enjoying one anothers company. Things had to change. In true busy-people (I never thought I'd become one of those!) fashion we scheduled a date.

Dates for us are tricky. If we go out we have to find a sitter and I struggle with letting other people take care of Baby Glitter, so our list of people we can call upon is very limited. So to combat this, I decided on a 'home date'. Nothing fancy, just something that wasn't what we do day in, day out and would allow us to catch up and chat and just sit back and enjoy what we have together. Feeling sick yet? Haha.

(As you can see, the wind put paid to any romantic candles I might have hoped for. Thank you British Weather.)

I had this grand idea that I would tie a piece of string from one fence to another, hang strips of crepe on it and they would flutter gently in the breeze, whilst creating a magical, colourful curtain for the patio, and thus create a little tropical fun zone of candles and foods and joy. In actual fact, it was windier than a gale on mars, the strips of paper all clumped together and whipped about, almost smacking us in the face and Baby Glitter thought it was the best thing she had ever seen in her entire life. Low on romance, high on comedy.

We sat on our (very windy) patio, ate bread with oil and balsamic vinegar, drank fruity fizz punch, lit candles many times over before giving up, chatted about daily life, laughed about memories, planned trips for the summer, put Darcy to bed and ended up eating dinner inside (much less windy) and watched a movie. Perfect.

 (Look at the potential this lovely patio date had!! Punch in cocktail glasses, candles, bread, dips, gale force wind, getting-tired-baby. Ahhhh the romance. Not.)

I think a lot of people expect married life to be idyllic and rosey. It isn't always. Sometimes it's fun, sometimes it's humdrum and sometimes it's downright difficult. I really enjoyed making the time to enjoy marriage and letting all of life's little things wait. I think I'm going to do it more.

What do you do to appreciate your partners/parents/pals/pets/imaginary friends?

Toodlepip!

xx

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65 comments:

  1. baby glitter is so cute
    please follow my blog at
    http://fashionandbeautytribes.blogspot.co.uk/

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  2. I can totally relate to this post Louise. Nathan and I hit a rough patch last year and we vowed to go on a 'date night' once a month. That was in August and I think we've had a total of 3 nights out by ourselves since then. Oops. I'm sure there were 2 nights we'd planned to be alone but our gorgeous 8 year old said nope, you had me, I'm sticking around. Good job we love her ey ;) Love how much effort you put in though. Maybe I should try trimming up our kitchen and trying to capture some romance? I'll let you know how it goes. Hehe xx

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  3. Me and my other half are not married (although recently engaged) but have been together a long time and I often feel quite similar to what you describe - merely cohabiting together - yet I always think we haven't got the time/money/inclination to do things together but as you've pointed out it doesn't have to be something big it's the little things that hold a relationship together. Thank you for this post Louise :) maybe you should add 'marriage guidance' to you extraodinaire repotoire too lol

    Jenni x

    Bowsbanglesandbakes.blogspot.com

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  4. i think this is such a good idea!! me and my boyfriend have the same problem as we are both super busy yet live together, crazy!
    we will defiantly be trying this over the summer on our little patio.

    thankyou!

    xxx

    lizzieashcroft.blogspot.com

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  5. Such a great idea... You're so creative :) I hope one day I'll be settled down with a family like you, love these posts xx

    beautyembraced.blogspot.co.uk

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  6. This looks like such a good idea, it's a shame about the wind but I'm glad it didn't spoil your home date! :) xx

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  7. Aw this is lovely :) Me and my boyfriend usually see each other once a week, due to our schedules / my lack of a car! I try to make sure we always do something together that we can look forward to throughout the week, like going to see a film, shopping or even going out for some grub! I wonder what out married life would be like! As you say, I can imagine it being very difficult at times, but equally as lovely other times! xx

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  8. its true...sometimes you just have to set a day to keep up with the closest one!

    i find it really great to keep a specific day during the week where its just a sort of 'date night', we don't specifically go out, but at least no other things are planned!

    http://kellinasthoughts.blogspot.com/

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  9. well it was attempted beautifully xx


    http://ravingbeautyx.blogspot.com/

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  10. D'awww Baby Glitter is gorgeous!!<3

    Stop by my blog??:)
    http://missjammyxo.blogspot.co.uk/

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  11. Ah sometimes the most simplest of ideas are the best. Glad you got some time together with your little gorgeous family.

    Becky

    beckys makeup

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  12. What a lovely date! It's a little different (!), but I always make sure I walk through the fields each morning with my dog, and we watch the sun come up. I have a very stressful job and I see a lot of unpleasant things at work (I'm a doctor) and I find it helps to empty my mind ... even if it's only to make room for the next day's worth of stress ;) xx

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  13. I really like this post. Sometimes you do just get into the habit of existing together and sometimes all it takes is a little imagination and a bit of time together to realise how important what you have is. And it doesn't have to cost a lot as you have shown x x

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  14. This looks lovely Louise!! You are so right, it is so easy when living together to not spend proper time together. For money reasons we tend to do 'homedates' together a fair bit. Find something nice to watch, take a little extra time to set the table nicely and maybe get a nice drink with dinner. Plus we have rules that no distraction while that date goes on! No phones, or internetting. Its surprising how much that can refresh things! Hope you're having a fab jubilee weekend!
    xxx

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  15. This is such a beautiful and inspiring post, Louise!
    I'm glad you two when realizing something was missin, tried to make up for it!
    Keep on being so full of life and inspiring =)

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  16. You're so lovely! You and Matt are like a model-couple for me! Hope you have a lovely time! Lots of love! :)

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  17. Your evening sounds perfect, mixed with a nice bit of comedy. Home dates are a great idea.

    I've been in a relationship for 3 years, and when people say that marriage is difficult (as opposed to just not always exciting) it scares me a bit. People never tend to expand.

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  18. aw baby glitter is such a cuteey:') you seem to have had a good time :D xxx

    vintage-teapot.blogspot.com

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  19. Awww this post just melted my heart. So cute :) x

    aplacecalledadelaide.blogspot.com

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  20. I feel exactly the same sometimes! And I'm only 18 and have only lived with my fiance for just over half a year :/ What I like to do for a bit of change is I like to buy myself some new PJ's annndd also buy him some jammie bottoms as a surprise gift (he is a softy for some jim-jams!) and buy some snacks and just agree to do nothing but sit in bed and watch films or tv shows or something. Sounds stupidly simple but I think those kinds of nights in are the best nights I have :) Love your lifestyle posts! Can't wait for more and more and more!

    Jen Xxxxxxxxx
    http://www.beautebyjen.blogspot.com

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  21. This is lovely! Married life can be so hard at times, and it is really difficult to spend quality time together. I love the idea of a home date, it's convenient and cheap! Looks like you had a lovely time :)

    http://golddustk.blogspot.co.uk/

    xx

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  22. I love that you are so honest Louise, you don't pretend that life is always sugar coated and I really respect that. I'm currently as single as the day I was born but I do find that sometimes my shadow and I get in a bit of a rut so maybe I need to think of some fun activities to enjoy on my larry...maybe tonight will be a face pack night (cash in on the fact there is no one there to see me looking like a troll!). I hope you have many more lovely date nights where the wind calms down and you can enjoy your romantic lighting (or just go wild on glass paints and old jam jars and then do a big up yours to the weather and embrace the wind because your tea lights will be protected!)
    Love your lifestyle blogs just as much as your beauty posts.

    shinyprettythings-alice.blogspot.co.uk

    xxx

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  23. This is a lovely blogpost and so recognizable!
    Thnx for sharing Louise =)

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  24. So wonderful! I love the way you write and share all those things with your readers!!
    Janine

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  25. Such a wonderful post! I admire the effort you make and the way you share your life with us readers :) and of course Baby Glitter is adorable!

    www.thoughtfulsunday.blogspot.co.uk/

    xx

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  26. I get sick of people asking me if I get bored being a stay at home mum, your dead right though, a few chores here, a bit of escape time blogging, playing with the cheebies and the day to day cooking, running errands, the days just fly by. My hub and I had a date night last month that conincided with our birthdays, it was so nice we've decided to do it once a month, it reminded me that without the kidlets we get on like a house on fire..not that we dont with them, but we do spend a lot of time telling them off but then they are 4 and 6, why I ever willed them to talk, god only knows!, thanks for capturing a bit of parenthood us mums can relate to:-)

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  27. Such a good idea. I'm currently single but I'm going to keep this in mind for the hope that one day I'm not! love your blogs x

    www.dearjamie-leigh.blogspot.com x

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  28. Lovely photos, baby glitter is so cuteeee!!!

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  29. I completely agree. Although my wedding is still a little while off yet, my fiancee and I both struggle to get quality time in. Normally because she's jet setting off around Europe with her job and I'm pretending to attend my law degree. We too failed with the candles this week ha. Great post!

    Lea x

    http://shebeginstosee.blogspot.com

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  30. Awwh you did the right thing :D I love having little at home dates where you can spend some time together properly ! My boyfriend and I did that recently, what with me us being on different islands during the week, and both being quite busy in the weekends, we don't usually have much time to see each other. Sucks, but you have to make an effort :) ! love this post !

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  31. I love reading your blog! You always sound really happy!:) baby glitter is cute btw!:) xo

    www.ellenlovesfashion.blogspot.com

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  32. I think date nights are really important- I live with my boyf and although we see each other every day we find we rarely have a good old 'chat'- its really great to make time to go out for dinner (or eat at the table with the tv off!) xx

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  33. My husband and I have been the same lately. I think people assume because you spend every day together that you're always *together* but it gets very easy to just plod along and drift off. We went out for dinner (thank you Tesco clubcard rewards!) last week and since doing that things feel much better.
    He also works in a school so thankfully it's half term and we can spend a bit more time as a couple and do lots of therapeutic smooching hehe :D
    Enjoy your week together :) xx

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  34. ahaha I like how you added in imaginary friends at the end of your list! This was such a nice idea, and I love your creative crepe curtain idea! Even if our weather doesn't!
    Reading your blog post has really made me crave bread and balsamic oil... uhoh!

    I actually really love reading your lifestyle posts!
    xxx
    rivasoave.blogspot.co.uk

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  35. Hi Louise ,
    loved reading this post i can totally relate my son is now 9 months old and me and my partner have only managed to get out on 2 dates as im very picky about who i let watch my little boy. Will deffo have to try and do 'date' evening indoors, love your blog, darcy is stunning looks so much like you xxxx

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  36. Loved this post, and I do think date nights are important too.
    Baby Glitter is the cutest :)
    xx-B
    http://thegreyclover.blogspot.co.uk/

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  37. I think that you would be fantastic at writing a book, in the Sophie Kinsella/Helen Fielding/Marian-Keynes vein. Your way with words and your style of humour is just MADE for that - the fourth paragraph of this post literally made me choke on my wine with laughter, it's so well-written and funny. Plus your experience and your outlook on life...you have something of the Bridget Jones about you (albeit a married version with a baby) and I feel like you probably have some life experiences and an outlook on the world that would lend itself really well to being put in a novel. And even though what you write is funny and witty, it feels so natural and not like you're putting on a persona...I think that's a really rare gift among bloggers.

    I don't know why I've suddenly become obsessed with this idea, but more than any other blogger I read, I really feel like you could be fantastic in book form. Do it!

    Anyway, in the meantime thank you for all the blog posts and videos and, most importantly, the adorable Baby Glitter-age!

    xx

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    Replies
    1. I second this!

      Tanesha x

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    2. I third it! The public have spoken Louise xxx

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  38. Such a lovely idea for you to all spend time together as a family!

    http://aimeemoncur.blogspot.co.uk/

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  39. I love your honesty on here Louise!
    It's very easy to paint an idyllic picture of your life on a blog, so it's refreshing to hear your thoughts :)

    Lucy x
    slicesofstyle.blogspot.com

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  40. This is a great post Louise! I feel like it is so easy for a couple to slip into a bit of a rut when you have been together so long & you are busy with life all the time. It's so important to not take the other person for granted & make time for each other :)

    P.S. Baby Glitter is beyond adorable- I always get excited when she makes an appearance in your videos!

    xx Louise
    A Little Beauty Luxury

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  41. I love all your blogposts and videos you're so genuine and not afraid to be yourself, this is such a sweet idea and i think you, matt & baby glitter are such a cute lil' family!

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  42. This is such a heartwarmingly lovely post. It makes me a little bit sad inside, currently enduring the 'downright difficult' phase and trying to remain positive x

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  43. That is so lovely :). I think it is amazing how you can end up just co-existing but well done for stopping and saying 'no, this isn't good enough!' To many future dates :Dxx

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  44. I love how you are able to come up with such creative ideas, esepcially for things like this! Despite the weather, it looks really cute. Matt is very lucky to have you!

    Love, Elizabeth xx

    http://butterflyboo.blogspot.co.uk/

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  45. You guys seem like such a lovely couple, and as a single girl, you melt my cold heart! Stay happy :) x

    beautyimaginarium.blogspot.co.uk

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  46. My boyfriend and I don't live together, in fact we live 2 hours away and don't see each other often. It's going to be even less now as he's now working (which is an amazing step forward in our lives as we can now properly start saving to live together). We try to take time out together to do something fun, instead of just watching TV together (which is what we got into a rut doing). We used to spend most of our weekend together on our laptops and hardly talking. It's easy to get stuck in a rut, and I love just sitting and talking. 'Date nights' don't even have to be expensive - I even did a blog post on it and included an indoor picnic as an idea - which you could used on your windy date! :)

    x

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  47. Darcy is such a beautiful girl. Though I think it is sweet that you and Matt are realising that you haven't been spending much time together - make sure you cherish those moments :)

    LaceyLoves

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  48. loved this post!
    It's very true that with "happily ever after" begins the real work!

    www.lavaligiadiroanna.blogspot.com

    Roanna

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  49. Hi Louise

    I have been married 23 years in November and it's not always been love, hearts and flower. As a soldier he was often away leaving me to raise the two kids alone in Germany with no family. I am stubborn, he is stubborn and like you say humdrum life sometimes gets in the way, but the thing is people forget the grass is never greener. AS much as he drives me nuts and I drive him nuts....I LOVE HIM. You did the right thing, instead of wallowing, you sorted it, and wether it was this perfect romantic evening or not, you still spent time together, you still talked, you still remembered why you love him!

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  50. I think this is the cutest post I have ever read! Such a sweet idea and like you said so important to spend quality time with that special someone in your life. Makes me want to do more special things with the people I love!xx

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  51. You should never feel ashamed of having to schedule a date.. it's actually pretty normal.
    People think that we all lead these perfect lives and our relationships are always perfect but this isn't always the case. I live with my boyfriend (well we just got another house down in Kettering, but i'm still living in St Albans till I find a job here) and so I only see him on weekends, but this isn't easy.. because he's a chef. And yes we do have to set time aside to have date night. And it's so easy to just go about daily routines, but it's also nice to find the time (even if it is looking at the calender together when working out when you're next free!)
    To be honest, being a mum is a job in itself.. and I praise everyone who has children to look after. It's not easy, it's 247! I used to be a nanny, and I found that hard enough, but at least I could give the children back.. whereas they are there with you all day every day... But look at the rewards. You have a beautiful little lady, and from these photo's it looks like a perfect day you had. And that's what makes them more special, when you make the time for it!

    SORRY about the essay!x

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  52. This sounds absolutely marvelous! I think it's great to have date nights and this looks perfect :)

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  53. I loved reading this post! I am a teacher too and also have to bring lots of work home with me (sob!) My husband and I are trying really hard to make an effort and have date nights - it is so important to do! x

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  54. This sounds so lovely I really loved this post I love the way you have with words it makes reading your blog such fun and I love your videos too they always make me giggle (but in a good way) :) keep up the brill posts and vids. I loveeeeee bread with oil and balsamic vinger yum yum craving it now!! xo

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  55. How lovely. I know how easy it is to let spending time together take a backseat. It's the little things that make evenings like that special xx :-)

    http://emmashouseofbeauty.blogspot.co.uk

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  56. that was nice and a lovely romantic idea,yes i need to spend more time with my partner too and sit and just watch a film,either busy with Teegan or making my youtube videos which i enjoyxxxx

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  57. Really great idea, I completely get the whole co-existing thing, its so important to make time for things like this!

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  58. I love love love the way you give us an insight into your personal life, feels like you're a friend!xxxxx

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  59. This was so cute. I hope Matt appreciated it!
    xxxxxx
    www.xbonjourbelle.blogspot.co.uk

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  60. I love home dates. My hubby and I put the kids to bed and kick back with wine, food and movies. I find our home dates to be more romantic than being out. It's easy to lose your relationship in between kids, work, life etc. It's important to take time out and just be with each other. It doesn't matter if it's out on the town or at home. I love watching your videos and reading your blog. You seem like a really genuine person and that's refreshing in a world full of haters and fake people. Keep up the good work! :)

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  61. I absolutely love this post. I was actually smiling the whole time I was reading. You are so right, it is very easy to find yourself in a situation where you are co-existing so dates are really important. I think this idea of a simple home date is wonderful and I will definitely plan some of these when the sun shows it's face again.
    Lovely read xx

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  62. Loved this post, and I do think date nights are important too.
    Baby Glitter is so cute! :)
    xoxo Inka
    http://beautyepicure-beautyepicure.blogspot.fi

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  63. Baby Glitter is the cutest baby I have ever seen!! I can't stop thinking that every time I see her :)

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Sprinkleofglitter xxx