Double the Monkey Business

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Welcome Doodles the Elf

Welcome Doodles the Elf

It is that time of the year again. I am one of the blogging mums who has an elf visit each year – sorry about that!

I love Christmas and this year is no exception.  We are full of Christmas cheer in this house. Even the monkeys at the top of the blog have decided to join in!

Doodles the Elf

Doodles the elf sits next to two star wars advent calendars.

Our elf is called Doodles and if last year is anything to go by he is a little mischievous!

He created havoc in the bathroom and was using my lipstick to write messages on my bathroom mirror!  So it is fair to say that as from today we will have an additional little monkey joining us for the month of December.

Here are some examples from last Christmas so you can see what we are dealing with:

Doodles the Elf: getting caught by a door handle, throwing toilet paper everywhere, sitting on a tv, caught up in a toy and writing on a mirror using lipstick!

Anyway, having carefully considered how to blog about this, I decided not over elf the pudding (sorry). I will do a little round up post of his antics once a week – on a Saturday.

For those not familiar with the elf, he arrives on the December 1st and stays until Christmas Eve.  He flies back to Santa each night to report on whether children have been naughty or nice, which – as a parent – is really quite useful, I have to say.  It saves me having to contact Santa each evening!

Today Doodles arrived for the month and he brought the boys advent calendars, which is very nice of him.  He also brought a letter from Santa.  The boys are over the moon!

If you have one of Doodles friends visiting you this christmas please tag me on social media and share your posts!

I would love to see them all and to know that I am not the only one bought in to the elf madness.

Let the christmas craziness commence… yippee!!

We have joined in with #elfontheshelf as we count down to christmas!  Come and say hi to Doodles on the blog today. The children are thrilled that Santa would let him visit us.

Christmas Gift Ideas for Parent Bloggers

Christmas Gift Ideas for Parent Bloggers

I have been been loving the christmas lists on all my favourite bloggers websites.  They have been full of brilliant ideas and so I thought I would jump right in and do the same.

So here are some christmas ideas for blogging parents – in other words this is what I would like for christmas… hint hint Daddy monkey!

(This post contains Affiliate Links. Click here for full disclosure.)

Spa Break

A white towel rolled up, sits beside a jar of massage oil (which has a rose inside)

As someone who is Social Media ALL THE TIME, I love the idea of a spa break.  Which would naturally mean a digital detox for a day.  The thought of hanging out at a lovely spa relaxing and pondering life seems like absolute bliss


A white fabric box, with two lamps on either side, makes a homemade lightroom.

I was so chuffed when I made this the other week…

I have wanted Lightroom ( as in the photo editing software) for a while now.

The photography side of blogging is so much fun and I have a lot to learn. I really want to improve on this in 2017.

It is a main focus of mine and now I have my actual lightroom (see above) all set up at home, I want to take it to the next level.  So what better way than to get some fab software to help with your editing.  So this is number 1 on my wish list this christmas.

Possibly with a dummies guide on how to use it – this might come in handy

Photography Course

A lady in a pink hat and gloves, with black clothes, stands in a snow blizzard taking a photo

Leading on from this there is not much point in having editing software if you don’t know how to use a camera effectively.  So, the other thing on my wish list is a photography course.

As it turns out we found a great online course on Groupon (which my mum spotted – thanks mum), which I have already bought.  Although it is technically not christmas yet I have already started making my way though the course and it has helped massively.

Proof that you don’t have to break the bank to improve your skills.


A silhouette of a lady stands by a shore with a camera and tripod, taking photos of the sea.

Can  you believe that even though I have been blogging for nearly a year I don’t have a tripod?

In fact for the most part I have just used my iPhone to take photographs – hence the above mentioned photography course.

I have my eye on this oneI like it because it is lightweight, which will come in handy when I run after the kids.

So, this is definitely on my wish list this Christmas.  Well that and a camera charger as I seem to have misplaced mine…

Blogging Journal

A female hand holds a silver pen to paper

I created my own blogging journal this year.  However, I have had my eye on this one by Paperchase for a while.

Blogging Course

A blond haired woman sits on a hammock reading a large book

Blogging courses don’t have to break that bank either.  Aby Moore from You Baby, Me Mummy has a great variety of courses available, sometimes for free or for a minimal price that are always helpful and inspiring, check out her blog here.  The beauty of Aby’s courses are than she sends you the information to work through in your own time.  To top it off she is super lovely!

Also if you want to be inspired to learn more why not check out this blog post from View from In Here.  Nikki is one of the nicest and friendliest bloggers I have had the pleasure of virtually meeting.

Bloggers MugA white mug with Roger Hargreaves "Little Miss Blogger" on it - one for the mummy bloggers?

I can’t remember where I saw this originally.

However, I know it was another bloggers website but I can’t for the life of me remember where – if it was you please comment below.

I love the Little Miss Blogger Mug!  What a better way to enjoy a cup of tea.  Unfortunately, I don’t see a ‘Mr Blogger’ mug though, maybe we should start a petition…

A long lie and breakfast in bed

A white and yellow bed, with a tray of coffee sitting on it - perhaps a christmas gift or treat?

A bit short of cash?  This is such a lovely simple idea which I know most mums would appreciate.  A long lie with breakfast in bed, with little people entertained by Daddy.

What a lovely relaxing idea!

So there you have it, my complete guide for pressies this christmas for any blogger in your life.  In other words… my christmas list.  Happy shopping Daddy monkey…

Let me know in the comments what you would like for Christmas.

Or, if I have missed anything essential off this list that you think I may need a parent blogger would love, then let me know below.

Wondering what to get the parent blogger in your life for Christmas? Check out the blog for gift ideas and inspriation




We have had an eventful week, after D got sand in his eye at kindergarten on Monday.  This meant a rather long trip to A&E where he was very brave as the doctor cleaned his eye.  He had sore eyes for a few days afterwards but is a lot happier now.  He has to go for an eye test this week to check for any damage so we are keeping our fingers crossed that he gets the all clear.

We have also had to say goodbye to some lovely friends this week, as they move back to the UK.  Always sad when people move – and in this environment people move often.  Still not long now until we are packing up.

We are moving into the full on festive cheer now.   The Christmas markets have started here so it feels like Christmas is here.  I just need to convince Daddy monkey to put the tree up!

Thanks to everyone who took part in #capturingtheday this week.

Keep tagging us please! Everyone is welcome. We want to see anything that you feel captures your day.  Gemma  and I love seeing everything you have all been up to.


Without further ado these are my top pics for this week.

The top left photo is a lovely symbol of mummy / son love, as they cuddle up together on a cold day.

The donuts sound delicious – they are filled with nuttella! They look and sound delicious.

Bottom right is such a lovely capture, as a gorgoues little boy smiles at the camera.

The last photo made me very jealous, tickets to Lapland UK!  My two would love there and I can see us taking them when we return to the UK next year.

Week 12. Four Photos. A mum holds her little boy tight, the little boy wears a warm wooly hat and yellow jacket. Four donuts sit in greaseproof paper, A little boy peaks through a playground frame and smiles at the camera. Two letters sit on a mat inviting two little girls to lapland UK

From top left (clockwise):

  1. Dilan and Me: Blog & Instagram
  2. The Culinary Jumble: BlogInstagram
  3. Coffee, Cakes and Kids: BlogInstagram
  4. Dear Bear and Beany: Blog & Instagram


Pop over to Gemma’s blog to find out more about her week.

From top left (clockwise):

  1. Wonderful Chaos: BlogInstagram
  2. Have kids will travel UK: Instagram
  3. Burnished Chaos: Blog & Instagram
  4. Five Little Doves: BlogInstagram


Pop over to Gemma’s account to see what she has picked this week.  I really struggled to pick just one this week that were my favourites, so I have completely cheated and picked two!  I love both these photos.  The first one sees a fog bow, which I had never heard of until Gemma posted it today, truly stunning! The second photo makes me long for London life once more, as Gemma captures Carnaby Street at Christmas.


If you are discovering this hashtag for the first time, it is easy to take part.

We want to see a selection of photos, regardless of the topic! So tag #capturingtheday – we want to see variety!

We didn’t want a hashtag that just represented one niche because we want to see them all!  You don’t have to be a blogger to take part, everyone is welcome!

It is so easy to join, next time you post a photo tag us using: #capturingtheday.


Every Sunday we will do a blog post and every week we will feature our eight favourite photos – four each.

These featured images will also appear on our Instagram account with a tag back to your account.

So what are you waiting for?  Join us as we are #capturingtheday.  

Help us spread the word! We want everyone to join in!

I hope you all have a great week, we can’t wait to see what you have for us this week.





It is week 12 of #capturingtheday, the Instagram hashtag community for everyone!  Why not join in next week and be in with a chance to be featured. The alt text for this image is the same as the title. In most cases, that means that the alt attribute has been automatically provided from the image file name.

Snowflake, snowflake, little snowflake….

Snowflake, snowflake, little snowflake….

“We are a little like a snowflake…. unique and one of a kind”


If you share you lives with little people, then I am sure that the excitement of Christmas has already started to creep in.

It is not even December yet and the boys have been signing Christmas songs, making up a Christmas dance (which was very strictly!) and asking – daily – if Santa is here yet. I have been so fed up trying to remember how many sleeps there are until Christmas that yesterday I dug out the Christmas countdown ornament that we have. The thinking was that this would help stop the constant questions. And, guess what.  I was wrong…..

As you have probably realised from reading my other posts lately, the boys love getting crafty. So I thought we could do some fun Christmas crafts to keep them occupied.

Little did I know that this would get messy…. Very very messy.

I thought it would be fun to make white a snowflake out of handprints. How much fun would that be?

Lots of fun as it turns out, until one child steps – thankfully barefoot – in the paint and then runs away. Queue one freaked out mummy trying to stop him before he got to a carpet! Serves me right for being clever and doing crafts in the utility room floor, as I thought it would be easiest to clean up.

Anyway, if you fancy having a go at this, here is how we did it. I would recommend trying this without the drama!

Warning, this is craft is easy peasy!!!

What you need to make a snowflake:

  • Coloured paper
  • White paint
  • One hand

Blue Card. White paint on an orange plate. One little hand covered in white paint and ready to start making snowflakes

So, all you have to do is let your little one dip their hand in the white paint and repeatedly put this on the card. Then, each time you turn the card slightly.

A little finger adds snowdrops to his blue snowflake pictures

Once done, you can add to the snowflake by making little snowdrops with the tips of fingers.

The end results - a snowflake and snowdrops done by little handprints and fingers.
The end results - a snowflake done by little handprints

I thought it looked really effective. If you have a go please tag me on Social Media so I can see your snowflake!

Ho, Ho, Ho….

We have been getting festive with our crafts. This is perfect for children as they make a snowflake out of their handprint and white paint. Really easy and a great art attack for Christmas.