A Weekend In The Life With Mum and Blogger, Natalie Jones

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A weekend in the life is Kidadl’s regular blog about the family lives of an amazing array of Kidadlers. Here, style mummy Natalie Jones shares her top tips for weekend family fun with her little one!

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Our average days look like...

During the weekends we wake up at around 6:30, we head to the kitchen where Jude will decide what he wants for breakfast, not always a choice he’s actually allowed, like when he says “Mummy I would like a lollipop for breakfast” and my response is “no, you know we can’t have sweeties this early in the day!”. His usual breakfast is either jam on toast, brioche and some fruit or crumpets, he’s not a fussy eater so will eat anything you put in front of him, but these are by far some of his favourites. After breakfast we get dressed and head to his Nan's for an hour, so Daddy and I can go to the gym to get our training in. He loves being at his Nan's because guaranteed every weekend she has bought him a new toy to play with! When we pick him up we usually stop off at a playground for 40 mins or so for us all to get some fresh air and have a run round, Jude loves it when we go down the slide with him, even if Daddy is too big and gets stuck! Jude loves being on the swings and going high, he always sings the Pepper Pig song “flying high, in the sky, flying high and high and high” which always makes Daddy and I laugh he’s just so cute. By this time it's getting to lunch so we head home for some food, at the moment Jude is obsessed with tuna mayo on a jacket potato so will always ask for this, he will then have a nap about 1 till 3pm. When he wakes up I’m normally going stir crazy by then and want to get back out, we love to either go into town to a fair or swimming -the local swimming bath has a toddler pool which he loves and we always take some of his bath squirter’ with us to play with. For the evening, we have our dinner, Jude will have whatever I am eating be it a chilli or toad in the hole - he will happily eat everything. We then get some toys out, maybe his doctors kit, or some playdoh and have an hour playing then it’s time for a bath with more play time and a snuggle on the sofa, read a few books and then bed. Jude’s bedtime routine is pretty cute. We all go together, he likes to carry his own milk, then his dad will pick him up and Jude will ask for a big kiss, a little kiss, a little cuddle and a big squeeze cuddle, once he’s had all 4 he will then say “it's Mummy’s turn” then I will get the little kiss, big kiss, little cuddle and big cuddle! Then I would stand him in his cot, he’d get himself comfy and we would cover him up and all say goodnight. When we don’t hit the gym we usually head to London to seek some adventures, like Discovery Story in Stratford where there are arts and craft and lots of things to climb and story times for the kids.

Natalie weekend in the life

My top tips for getting out with the kids are...

First is always plan his outfit and mine the night before, as this takes up so much time in the morning if you're in a hurry to get out. Jude loves being out and about, so we never really struggle getting him out the door, but if he does push back slightly we offer him to take one toy, so to distract him I would say ”baby who are you going to take out with you today?”, rather than you're allowed to take, I think this makes it feel like more of his own decision as he is a very independent little man and likes to make his own choices and do things for himself! Also not to let them get to distracted by TV or games for too long before leaving as Jude becomes engrossed and then doesn’t want to stop what he is doing to leave. We also get Jude to say bye to things like his toy, the TV and the dog this way it’s a closure of one activity to do another.

If it’s raining we like to...

Go to London and head to the V&A Museum of Childhood which is amazing fun for the kids and adults to see old and new toys and explore some fun lego building areas, and dress up like the firemen at the fire truck station. You could spend hours here running around and there is even a café to sit and chill for a while and grab a coffee and cake.

If it’s treat time or a special occasion we like to...

Book somewhere fun to visit or somewhere fun to eat - when we visit Paw Patrol this year it will be for Jude’s birthday. For his birthday in Vegas we booked dinner at the Rainforest Café which is amazing for young kids and big kids that love animals, with all the moving animals within the walls and hanging from the ceiling.

On our must-see London bucket list for this year is...

I would love to take Jude to London Zoo, I last went when I was around 4 months pregnant and I know Jude would love it, he’s a big animal lover and there are so many amazing animals at London Zoo. Also London Aquarium to see all the spectacular fishes. Then when Christmas comes around again we will plan Winter Wonderland as we decided this year he was still a bit young and probably wouldn’t be able to go on too many rides, so wanted to hold off for another year to when we can enjoy it as much as we have in the past.

weekend in the life London tube

In my bag for a day out is...

We always have a colouring book and some pencils as this is great fun that we love to do together as we are both pretty creative, a few of his favourite hand held toys that he can play with in the car or on the street like his iron man figure or a digger truck, lots of snacks of course, and water, as my boy does nothing but drink. The usual nappies, wipes and the iPad for if we are on long journeys in the car as he has some educational games he loves to play.

When we get back from a day out we feel...

Usually exhausted but content, we are so lucky that we have enough time to spend with each other, and we enjoy every moment of it and grateful as not everyone has this chance. I would like to think that when Jude is older he will look back at the photos and memories and appreciate all the things we did together as a family and that he felt loved and lucky.

When we’re hanging at home we love to...

Build with our duplo lego, we build the tallest towers and the biggest houses, but we're always trying to make sure it doesn’t fall down as Jude hasn’t got the hang of gravity yet! Currently our favourite game is to chase invisible monsters around the house and hit them with our iron man powers from our hands - which is also great for Mummy’s cardio for the day!

Our favourite family meal is...

If we're ordering in it's pizza from Pizza Hut. Jude loves his stodgy foods and cheese, and to be fair I love cheese too so I think he may get this from me! We always get two large pizzas and some sides, and Jude isn’t shy on helping himself to the big slices. He isn’t a lover of pepperoni though, so this isn’t from me, as this is all I ever order!

A brilliant family memory from 2019 is...

Our trip to Vegas, we went there in August 2019 to get married. This wasn’t Jude’s first time on an aeroplane but it was his first time being confined to a chair for a long amount of time, which myself and my partner were worried about for the months leading up to, but he surprised us both and quite a few other travelers who initially thought “great there is a 2 year old behind us”! He was so well behaved and wasn’t screaming or too loud and didn’t want to run up and down the aisles. We all had a fab time in Vegas, every morning we would go down to the pool and play with a beach ball and we would take turns on carrying Jude through the water which he adored. Then around 4pm we would go back to the room for a little nap, wake up about 7 and get ready for a dinner down the strip. Jude loved all the lights and the thrill of the buzz in Vegas, and he even managed to charm himself a couple of Las Vegas Show girls on the strip! On the day of the wedding Jude spent the night before and the morning with his Daddy getting ready, then just before the ceremony he got brought to where I was waiting so he could walk me down the aisle, which is by far the moment special moment of my life as a mum. He was the cutest little escort I have ever seen. Jude turned 2 on the day we were travelling back to the UK and was well and truly spoilt by the air hostesses on our BA flight.

This year we are...

Thinking of doing a few long weekends in places around the UK, Diggerland in Kent, Pepper Pig world is on the list and a visit to Wales for Jude to meet some of his family relatives that he has not meet yet. We have also booked Paw Patrol live in London Wembley for his 3rd birthday with one of his little besties, Elodie, a friend's daughter that I know they are going to love. We may even book a last minute week to Spain in the summer to visit some friends.

weekend in the life family
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Disclaimer

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Natalie Jones

So my name is Natalie I am 38 nearly 39 years old (but don’t tell anyone) I grew up in Essex but have moved around the south for most of my life. I was living and working in East London when I meet my partner Gareth online, there was an instant attraction of course but he just seemed so genuine and kind and a bit of a gent so straight away I was hooked 😊 I was a bit of a partier when he meet me, going to Ibiza twice a year and going to all the festivals which I managed to convince him to come to once or twice, then after 3 years he asked me to move to Cambridge which was a big ask as all my friends and family were in Essex and East London, but I knew he was the one for me so had to make the choice and since then I’ve never looked back. We lived a great life, going to fancy restaurants, and having weekends away and going to great locations for holidays, but then decided we wanted to extend our family and try for a bubba, which came sooner than expected as we fell after 6 weeks of trying, we were both so happy its all both of us ever wanted and it was all coming true.