On Wednesday 18th January, as the winter sun shone through the windows, Jospehine Grace Mallia was born. From the moment she started her journey to meet us, and I felt my first contraction, I knew she was a girl. And when this tiny creature was placed on my chest, with her head of the darkest brown hair, our hearts burst with happiness.

The last ten days have been the most surreal of my life. Our beautiful daughter is the sweetest girl and the days have blurred into eachother, as we've spent the hours staring at her in awe.

We're slowly heading back into the real world now so expect more posts and heaps of pictures of our divine little one. Plus I'd love to share our birth story...it's very long...and also our breastfeeding story; it's certainly been more complicated than I had ever anticipated and is still an ongoing saga that we're taking a day at a time.

Thank you for all your comments on the nursery, and the lovely good wishes you've sent too. We can't wait to share our first steps as parents here and show off our newest family member as she grows xx



So we're still here. Playing the waiting game, hoping Baby will make it's arrival soon. I'm focusing on staying calm and relaxed and know that this little bird will start on its journey when it wants. Like this lovely lady says...stay in the moment.

Between resting and walking, listening to my hypnobirth CD and whispering encouraging words to The Belly, I've finished the last details in the nursery and I'm so pleased with how it's turned out. A mix of bright colours and vintage prints, second hand discoveries and fairtrade purchases, Mama-made bits and Nanny-made cot bumpers plus a couple of bits from our own childhoods.

From the top:
A second hand sofa from my brother in law covered in a handmade quilt from a charity shop. No doubt one of my best finds ever, for the grand sum of £4. A little TLC was needed but it's a beautiful thing that I can't believe someone just gave away.
The Granny Blankets were also both charity shop finds and were a just few quid each. I completely agree with this lady ...there's always room for another Granny Blanket.
All cushions are Mama-made, with exception for the deer, using vintage fabrics and all the toys are charity shop finds. The knitted dolls I found at separate times for about 50p each in a charity shop, but thought they made a cute couple. Then there's this crazy monster and little bird, made by moi, as well as some cuddlies from my Nan.
The picture frames are Ikea bargains filled with postcards and prints collected from here and there and the Moomin poster is a sheet of wrapping paper from this store. Thw alphabet hanky came from a random homeware store in town that accidentally sells some pretty cool and retro stuff.
The cot is classic Ikea and the blankets include this awesome find and the quilt I made from scraps that I had lying around. The amazing reversible bumper was made by my ever-talented Mum in the prettiest fabrics.
The books are mostly second hand discoveries, with some new classics in there thanks to these ladies and the animal ornaments have been gathered since I first started thinking about this space.
I got pompom crazy with a bespoke Happy Circus garland and couldn't resist hanging the red woolly jumper I wore when I was a kiddo alongside these amazing dungarees.
The chest of drawers and mirror were uncovered at this junk shop and the nappy bag hanging on the bag of the door is a men's satchel we choose when it became apparent that the vast majority of nappy bags on the market are simply horrendous. Plus, blue and yellow anyone?
Our nephew's artwork turned out better than we ever hoped and looks so cool up on the wall. Something we will always treasure and a selection of truly artistic creations.
Finally, hanging above the cot is one of Kerry's truly awesome prints, the Donna Wilson baby plate, my felt cloud plus a dream catcher and beautiful hand drawn Christmas present Dora gave us.

We can't wait to spend hours in this little space with our baby. Watch it grow and develop and create memories as a family of three. Now, if only the teeniest member would shake that tiny booty and hurry along...



Bump day. The Bump Day. 40 weeks and one day down (thought I'd hold off taking a picture yesterday in case the baby made a late night arrival...wishful thinking)

The Bump and I have been spending our days lounging around, taking little strolls and getting the final things ready for an arrival any day now. Yesterday we had a midwife appointment which went smoothly as always. Blood pressure, good; baby's heartbeat, perfect; blood test results to check iron levels had gone up a bit? Well the red meat has paid off and we're now well and truly in the safety zone. Our lovely midwife this week, Lesley, was who we saw at our first ever appointment at 8 weeks. How fast those months have gone.

At home the Baby's nook in our bedroom is now all set up. A vintage Babar print discovered in a charity shop and postcards with pretty birds and beautiful sayings all sit above the Nanny-made basket liner, which makes comfy living for Donna Wilson and Cath Kidston teddies.

So, we're ready when you are little one. Your bed's awaiting, with new friends tucked up in Mama-made blankets. We can't wait to meet you...



So you all know what a knitting machine my Mum is, and have seen the beautiful things she's made our bub. Well now she's offering the world of Etsy some gorgeous knitted treats too, through my shop Happy Circus. With three styles of cardigans, some awesome dungarees, leggings and two hats on offer, there's plenty to choose from. All are based on vintage patterns and come in a really fab collection of colours - perfect for boys and girls.

Ben and I have already got versions of all these pieces lined up for our baby (the leggings and dungarees are seriously unreal) and I can guarantee you'll all love them too.

Plus there's a few new items from me - some Little Bow Pins to spice up your top, jacket or hat and a new pink hair bow too. There are also a few other bits in the pipeline, so keep your eyes peeled.

I hope you like these new additions, let me know what you think...

ps. Happy Birthday shout-outs to my sister and Nan for their birthday's over the weekend. We hope you both had the fabulous days you deserved xx



Finally getting round to posting some of my beautiful Christmas presents; this year I really scored, with pieces from lovely shops and designers.

It's not hard to work out what my two favourite colours are right now, although I have to admit it wasn't until I gathered everything to take these pictures that I realised to what extent. And the blue velvet cushion? I bought the makings for that with some Christmas money after this lady inspired me with these beauties. I would have chosen it in green or pink (I'm also loving a bit of neon right now) but the fabric shop near us is hardly velvet central. The blue looks pretty rockin' on our bed though I have to say, and I'm pleased with my first attempt at a round cushion.

The Boy did especially well with my awesome Donna Wilson cushion and Scandinavian style wooden bird, but my favourite present has to be Rob Ryan's A Sky Full of Kindness. I read it on Christmas Day morning as we lazed around in bed and it's the most beautiful story. I am thankful everyday that I have Ben, now more than ever, and can never quite believe that I lucked out in finding him. A girl has to treasure a boy whose present choices are so spot on.

AND still to come ... a few Paumes books and the new Milk Decoration from this newly discovered and absolutely brilliant online store, courtesy of my Mum. I like to spread the receiving of gifts out a bit!



Bump Day. 39 weeks down.

As I was thinking about where to do this week's bump photo (a day late and with pouring rain outside) I looked back over the bump photos of weeks gone by. I'd seen this new Mama's post (congratulations again Bron, Rose is so delicious and cute) and thought I'd recreate the first ever picture of the bump as I'm still just about able to squeeze this vest top over the belly.

The change in my body shape, as the weeks and months have gone by, has been so gradual it's crazy to look back and see just how big my tummy has got. In the original version of that second picture you can see my hand, watch, floorspace, everything. Now I can barely get anything more than the belly in the frame. Ha!



Happy New Year! I hope you welcomed in 2012 with style, whatever you did. This is how our evening shaped up; amazing burgers, fries and movies. Then, as the fireworks marked midnight, we stuck our heads out of the window to watch the sky light up. It was bliss. Just me, The Boy and The Belly.

This morning I got a text from one of my oldest, dearest friends letting me know that she was taking inspiration from my 10 for 2011 list, was writing her own and was feeling positive and ready to go for 2012. My friend has had the most difficult of years, and I'm so proud of how she's dealt with it with grace and dignity, still happy to lend me support when I've needed it despite how tough that must have been at times. She's a true friend and inspiration and I wish her and her husband so much happiness this year. May all your dreams come true xx

I've got to be honest, over the last few months I'd forgotten about this list (a few other things on my mind...) but looking back over it I'm rather pleased at the amount i'd crossed off. In fact a family portrait session and taking a trip to somewhere new with Ben are the only things not achieved, and given the tightening of the budget reigns (for obvious reasons), that last one's hardly surprising. The family portrait sesh? Maybe I'll be as lucky as this lady and find a photographer as good as this dude for one this year.

Mostly, for 2012 we have plans not resolutions (an idea stolen completely from this gal) ...settle into life as a family of three, relax and be happy. We're keeping it simple.