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Exam results do not define you.

August 25, 2016

Eyebrows on fleek in my High School days (middle pic)!

As a child I was aware that School was to be respected, attended (!) and adhered to. I enjoyed my time in the classroom.

But being pushed in one direction or the other regarding education was not in my Mum’s nature.

Maybe she had a peace that things would work out for me and my brother. Or maybe it was because she, like me,placed more importance on the need to try one’s best and to embrace the School environment as a whole, rather than push specific results.

I “failed” my eleven plus at the age of 11 and went to a High school instead of a Grammar school. Continue Reading…


My postpartum body | Part 1

July 15, 2016

I have such a clatter of emotions surrounding this post.

Embarrassment that people will see these dire photos of me. Complete disgust at myself for believing that I am in any way out of shape to begin with.  Then I move swiftly to feeling empowered that my body has housed three human beings and looks the way it does after only ten weeks since popping out the last one. And finally (you still here?) I question continually why am I putting this sh** out into the world in the first place?

I have struggled girls.

Continue Reading…


The Father’s day favourites | Prints

June 13, 2016

The Aslan special edition print is available HERE and you can personalise it with a quote from Narnia.

I am not keen on promoting my products to the heavens when the hallmark holidays like Mother’s day and Valentines day come up on the calendar.

But I often get asked about which of my prints are the most popular for men.

So below I have compiled a list to take the thinking out of it for you.

My art is made with love in my studio in Belfast. Then they are transformed into prints using Belfast company Media Design Print.

Therefore my work is 100% Belfast bred.

Simply click the link above each print and it will take you straight to the product. Continue Reading…


A birth story. Without the gory details.

May 18, 2016

I don’t think I know what a birth story is supposed to sound/look like

but I do know that since my second born in 2011 the internet has opened up a world of birth stories available at the touch of a button. It’s kind of the way the world works these days, right? Albeit a little unnerving.

I imagine if I asked my Mum about her birth story it wouldn’t have photos and bullet point explanations of her contractions.

However, it’s still important and I do know what happened at my birth  which is cool and something I like to know.

You can rest assured this won’t be the gory, bloody or even vernix covered story you may have seen in the past.

I think when you are pregnant with your first it seems other Mums want to share their story – how many hours she was in labour, the graphic details, the epidural wearing off too soon and the dreadful midwives they felt at the mercy of.

I don’t intend to do this. The reason I am putting Abraham’s birth story out there is for the positive side. Even if I thought this was something I would never share.

Don’t get me wrong- you know I love a good moan on the internet especially where parenthood is concerned- like here about my hyperemesis and my struggle with pregnancy and here about my exhaustion.

So it is not that I like to keep this little space of mine all flowery and fluffy with only the hippy dippy good stories.

It’s more that I had a good experience and you can too. Especially if you are thinking about a natural birth.


I am not entirely sure how this birth story should start.

Here goes

Continue Reading…


Weekend reading 15.05.16

May 15, 2016
Buy Aly’s colourful Belfast city print here.

May is whizzing by

and we are looking forward to  time with my extended family in a few weekends time to celebrate my Granny who this blog is named after, Edna.

Our latest addition to the family is also named after her with his middle name being Enda.

It is an Irish name meaning “freedom of spirit”.  Master Abraham is already proving to be quite the spirited wee monkey.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

I trust that you will be able to spend time with loved ones and feel good about yourself.

Thanks as always for reading and sharing.

If there are any articles relevant to the blog content I share and that you want me to see please please share them in the comments below.

I love to share the joy!

Continue Reading…


#MOTHERHOODALIVE | Print + Insta meet

May 8, 2016

If you’re new to my blog but have been following Mel and my #Motherhoodalive community on instagram then hello and welcome.

We have been absolutely blown away by the response to our simple idea encouraging Mums to show us in an instagram square what makes them spark.

If you need reminded of the whole notion, here is a link to our initial video for the hashtag.

To celebrate the global interaction (it kind of blew up when some of the big instagram accounts started to use and promote our fun idea) and to coincide with Mothering Sunday in the US, above is a print we designed for you.

You can get the print for FREE by clicking the link below.

Continue Reading…


Kids – exhaustion + life choices | FREE print

May 6, 2016

This started as a boring old rant from a tired Mum.

I had written it when I was thirty nine weeks pregnant, had a sore pelvis and hated the world a bit.

So when I came home from hospital five days ago on cloud nine having had my babe and all was right with the world again, I looked at it with disdain and thought

“I can’t air that moany piece of crap”.

So I stalled it.

Then last night,

I don’t know if it was a combination of the baby blues (it was day five), the exhaustion of a newborn or the fear of my husband returning to work but I lost my way and failed at disciplining (I hate that term- maybe ‘failed at parenting’ is better) my four year old for his rude behaviour and I hate myself for it and I thought,

“Well, I may as well share the darn thing now”.

Guilt ridden tears roll down my cheeks at 2.47am as I feed the newbie and type this amended intro because I keep replaying in my mind the scenario with the four year old.

I’ll set the familiar scene any mother will recognise Continue Reading…


5 reasons to join Instagram | Photography tips

April 26, 2016

Instagram is a funny little community.

It grows, it thrives and despite my own profile being public (the privacy settings are easy to manage so you don’t *have* to be public) I feel it is still an intimate corner of my social media.

The forces that be have recently changed the settings and scrolling

of how we view the images of the people we follow (you follow people and brands who essentially post images that you love) by adding in algorithm. “Alger wha?” I hear you say. That’s exactly how I feel and I had to ask my husband what it meant.

It means that instead of you seeing every.single.update chronologically you will see the most viewed + the most timely.

But forgetting the fact that you might not see posts (almost defeats the purpose, but stay with me) below are my reasons why I think you may as well give it a crack and embrace the insta generation

1. It’s easy to do from your phone/mobile device

Continue Reading…


Anniversaries – coping with the hard ones

April 19, 2016

Well of course I’m nine months pregnant on the anniversary of my Dad’s death this year.

I am learning to embrace these little intricacies and coincidences in my colourful life, knowing that things do (seem to) happen for a reason.

When I thought they might schedule a planned c section for me I had this feeling

that the date would be Dad’s anniversary (April 19th) and I felt surprisingly calm about that.

I did use fickle language in response to my Mum asking how I would feel if this would be the case stating,

 “I think it would be quite nice. I guess it wouldn’t be ideal if the baby or I died. Well, it wouldn’t be good for you..”

Sometimes I really need to check myself. Insensitive and not really funny is how one could describe such a statement.

This post isn’t intended to be sad or filled with self pity.

Continue Reading…