Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Kitchen - Dining Room Tour

This is my favourite room in the house. It was the first room we tackled when we moved in and is the one we have put the most effort into, and rightly so as it is where we spend most of our time. 

The kitchen itself, the floors and the window (I HATE the window) will eventually be changed but as they are all in perfectly working order we'll stick with them for the moment. 

This is the room beforehand...

And this is what we have done with it...

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Behind The Scenes

Two adults, a camera, and a lot of 'Oh Lyla look there's a cat' to get one semi decent picture. This is the edited version, there was 79 photos, the reality of a blog about a toddler. 


Friday, October 30, 2015

H&M Home Picks

Obsessed. Absolutely obsessed with H&M home. Its a collection I always have a quick look at when in London but today when searching for a copper framed mirror I had a look at their full online collection. My basket currently has 27 items in it, and I've spent the past 20 minutes googling ways to get it delivered to Ireland, because unfortunately they don't deliver here. (Parcel Motel virgin here, hoping it works)


Monday, October 19, 2015

12 Baby Halloween Costumes

Halloween is coming up and if you are anything like me you probably have 89 amazing ideas for costumes....that you'll do next week....(Hello Procrastination) Then out of nowhere its Halloween week and you have no time, or energy to put into making anything. Here are 12 simple and cheap costume ideas for you (or your baby - they look cuter on a baby)

 1. Harry Potter 

The gown is from an adults nuns costume picked up pretty much anywhere because its a pretty generic costume. The glasses had a fake nose attached that I pulled off, also picked up in any sort of costume shop. The owl is the models own. (Owly, as we like to call her - from Ikea)


Friday, October 9, 2015

Baby Friendly Dublin


My photos don't do Blas any justice at all. I was having an off day on the day I took them and was feeling a little self conscious so just took them quick so as not to draw attention to myself! But this place is beautiful! Set on the ground floor of The Chocolate Factory on Kings Inn Street, Blas has taken cafe interiors to a whole new level. Its big, its industrial, but its kinda homely and comfy as well. 


Monday, October 5, 2015

Dublin Design Night

On Wednesday night I went along to Dublin Design Night with Image Interiors & Living and Yelp. Dublin's interior enthusiasts got to wander amongst the cities eclectic design shops as well as take part in craft and gardening workshops, all the while sipping on Dublin inspired cocktails (Lots of whiskey..).

Some of my favourite shops were involved, such as Appassionista on Drury street. The floral arrangements they create capture the tone and mood of each season so well, that I could almost spell a bonfire while looking around the shop.  


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Halloween Costume For Babies

Many a year ago I made a last minute attempt to dress up as Barbie. I put on tan and my pink debs dress and asked my brother if he knew what I was dressed up as, 'A dope' he answered. Grand, I looked nothing like a barbie and decided I wasn't dressing up. That's pretty much been my Halloween every year since, I don't do dressing up. I'm too lazy and unorganised. 

Last year was my first as a parent, so pressure was on to dress Lyla up. Knowing I didn't want to dress her as a cute bunny rabbit or pumpkin, I started scouring the Internet for ideas. When I found one that was simple, cheap and worked well with her name. 


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

What We Wore

The past few weeks have been so busy, what with moving house, decorating, work and just general life! The busy-ness makes me cherish the slow days I have with my little girl even more, traipsing around town, coffee dates which now include Peppa to keep Lyla entertained, and afternoons spent feeding the ducks in the park. Days that leave me feeling tired and happy and like I'm somewhat on the right track in life. 


Friday, September 25, 2015

Prints For Your Home

I am so grateful for creative people. Not just creative people, but those with creativity who use it to create amazing things. I would consider myself to be somewhat creative, but somewhat lacking in initiative. A creative person lacking in enthusiasm and courage. Tragic really.  

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

White Wooden Floors

The floors in our new house are grand. Like their fine, nothing wrong with them, plenty of life left in them, but I kinda really want to change them. As such, I have spent the past month or so with my head down looking at everyone's floors, as well as on Pinterest, trying to decide what floors we should get.

White floors are having a moment. Actually white everything is having a moment, but floors in particular. They can make even the most light deprived rooms bright and fresh, and work with just about any wall colour. The problem with white floors is once you start thinking about them, ya kinda just can't stop? So here's a round of all my faves...

Friday, September 11, 2015

Baby Friendly Dublin

Two Fifty Square

Tucked away just off Rathmines road is Two Fifty Square. A bright, modern cafe, perfect for coffee nerds, and brunch enthusiasts. 

We first stumbled upon this place after a swim in Rathmines Leisure Centre. The cute little out door seating area, complete with dogs water bowls caught my eye, and I had to go investigate. 


Thursday, September 10, 2015

Life After Suicide

I read an article recently about life after suicide and the unexpected changes in your day to day life. This being Suicide Awareness Week, I planned to share it, but, alas, it has become lost in my countless bookmarks. So, I figured I would write my own post.

For those of you who don't know, my younger brother Daniel took his own life almost four years ago.
I remember it all so clearly, and yet it’s a blur.

It was a Monday evening, and I was home alone watching Eastenders when I got a phone call from my aunt telling me to get to the hospital immediately. Although she didn't tell me anything over the phone, I knew. I don't know how but I just knew.
After what seemed like the longest taxi journey there had ever been, I collapsed in a ball in the arms of my Dad’s neighbours at the doors of A&E.

Suicide, like many other deaths is sudden. Nothing and no one is prepared, it leaves a whole life to sort out. A bedroom full of clothes, books, guitars, a wallet with money, bank cards, I.D, a social media account to try and guess the password to, a much loved pet and an unfinished college degree to try to figure out. And, strangely, there isn’t a guidebook for the process.


Saturday, September 5, 2015

What We Wore

I love this dress (top?) so much I want to marry it. Extreme, but true.
I'm not a dress up in heels kinda gal. But I was in London, it was my birthday, we were going for a nice lunch, and sometimes a pair of heels and a dress (seriously, dress or top!?) can make you feel bigger, better and more confident. So what better way to turn 30?


Thursday, September 3, 2015

Thoughts & Prayers

I'm wandering around today with a heavy heart. The past while I have watched from afar while women I admire, and many many more that are strangers, suffer and feel pain in a way I can't even comprehend. It feels unfair, and somewhat wrong to be going about daily life, writing about meaningless things, without giving my empathy, thoughts and prayers to these amazingly strong people who are struggling through what is undoubtedly one of the most challenging times of their lives.


Monday, August 31, 2015

Stylish Changing Bags

My bag is a vortex. Hours have been lost rummaging through receipts, nappies, make up, banana's, toy phones and keys, and real ones; and of course Lyla's Peppa Pig teddy. I hold up queues up and down the city with my constant searching. 
The perfect way to disguise this unorganised chaos, as well as distracting from the other bags - under mama's eyes, is with a stylish, modern changing bag. 


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Our First Home

We are on the move! Again. From Bridgefoot Street to Manchester, then Christchurch, Blanchardstown, Tallaght, Pimlico and Marrowbone Lane, we've moved quite a bit in our 5 or 6? year relationship. And now we are on the move again. Why? Because we love packing.

Not really, in fact I hate packing. But it looks like this will be our last time having to do it because we have just bought our first home!


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

London With A Toddler

Small apartments for high rents, tube stations with no lifts and incessant crowds. London; not exactly somewhere you would consider child friendly. That was my opinion when we were booking a weekend away with our 15 month old. 


Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Thoughtful 30th Gift

As birthday's go, I think my thirtieth was pretty spectacular. 
Spent in London with my little family, in the sun, eating good food and drinking delicious champagne. 
I was absolutely spoilt with presents, cards and well wishes, but by far the best thing I got was this video my boyfriend put together for me. 
Nothing could have made me laugh (and shed a few tears) more than this...well maybe Scott from Five singing it to me himself, but whatever!
How lucky I am to have so many lovely in my life!?

If your looking for a thoughtful gift for a loved one this is definitely the way to go. 


Thursday, August 20, 2015

30 going on 16

I have a confession to make.
I’ve been living a lie.

I've spent the last ten years or so pretending to be an adult. Even going to the extreme lengths of having a baby and buying a house to convince you all that I am, in fact, a responsible grown up. Now as my 30th birthday approaches, I think its time to come clean.

I, Emma Coogan, am a 16 year old masquerading as an adult. And I had you all tricked didn't I?!

But if you look closely (past the wrinkles), you can see the signs of my enduring youth.

  1. The panic etched on my face as I prepare to buy alcohol: rehearsing my date of birth and star sign - just in case they ask. Then feeling as if I've gotten away with something when they usher me in without a second look. Eh hello? Don't you realise I'm underage and about to drink myself into an oblivion because I've yet to realise the one that's too many?
  2. When using public transport I head straight for the back seats. Because that's were all the cool kids sit obvz.
  3. Every time I go out for dinner, I order burger and chips. No matter the restaurant, setting or occasion, all I want is a burger drowned in ketchup.
  4. (This should really be 3a) When at home, I enjoy beans on toast or boiled egg and soldiers.
  5. I refer to my apartment as 'The Club House'.
  6. I live in fear of my Mam giving out to me for spending too much money on clothes or going out and when I step back into her house I automatically revert back to teenage mode, expecting her to make me tea and tidy up after me.
  7. And that constant teenager/first-job feeling of ‘I have no idea what I'm doing’ and 'It’s only a matter of time before I’m found out'
  8. Let’s not mention how long it takes me to respond to 'Mama'. It always takes a couple of moments before I realise I am in fact the Mama she is referring to. Eek. Or if a child calls me Lady or Woman. "That Lady"...Huh? What lady? Me? Nah.
  9. My conversations revolve more around Sabrina The Teenage Witch than current affairs.
  10. I don't understand taxes or politics and worry more about what my theme tune should be rather than my pension.
  11. My playlists consist of Hanson, Sisqo and mid-90s Celine Dion.
  12. I enjoy hopskotch, jigsaws, swings and making up dance routines.
  13. At toddler group the other day I noticed my outfit (dungarees) matched more of the kids than it did the parents.
  14. And when I hear Jamie talking business, I'm like...'Wow..such a grown up'.

Part of me is just waiting for that day I wake up caring about politics, but for now I'm happy out being a teenage mom. If I could just convince my parents to pay and cook for me, I would be sorted.
So, I guess I’m turning thirty but really.. 16 4eva. XOXO


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Patent shoes & Mama Stripes

Surrounded by bags, boxes and Lyla's toys I am taking a moment to appreciate where I am and the person I am here with, at this time in my life. My life is pretty sweet at the moment and I am beyond grateful for the people who have made it this way. 

Anyway, now to the actual post. Lyla got this dress as a gift for her birthday. At the time it was way to big for her, now it fits her perfectly, if not a little snug around her belly. (Baby bellies = beyond cute). It never ceases to amaze how much a baby can change in such a short space of time. She has about 10 words now, sings the Peppa pig theme tune and despite holding my hand in these pictures can take at least 8 steps unaided.

Her dress is from Gap and her adorable little patent shoes are from Penny's. I think my goal in life is to find a way of wearing patent shoes with socks myself, without looking like a twat. 
Until then I'm pretty happy with these little Zara ankle boots. They aren't leather like my 6387 other pairs of boots, so I feel like I'm progressing with being a bit more experimental sartorially. 

Although the stripes and black Mac style jacket might beg to differ.

The shorts are actually a play suit that I have decided is too young for me (THIRTY THIS WEEK!) but with a jumper covering the low plunge line you'd never know.

Emma: Playsuit - Urban Outfitters, Jumper - Zara, Jacket - H&M, Shoes - Zara
Lyla: Dress - Gap, Cardigan - Pennys, Shoes - Pennys

Did I mention I'm THIRTY this week!?!?

Monday, August 17, 2015

turning 30 giftguide

My birthday is approaching and its a big one. So I thought I would treat myself to something, I could give this list to Jamie to make his life easier but I kind of like to make him suffer... Joking, he's already got me the best present ever, a house! (Ok he didn't buy me a house for my birthday, but we bought a house, so I'm pretty happy with that)

Anyway here's a little look at the pretty (fashion-y) things that have been catching my eye.

1. Selected Madrid Kimono Top/. 2. Cos Red Dress/. 3. Self Portrait Lace Dress/.

4. Velvet RayBans/. 5. Jord Wooden Watch/. 6. BDG Suede Bag/.

7. Cos Mesh Bag/. 8. Fred Perry Bomber Jacket/. 9. Cos Rope Belt

If you like my style, there's plenty more on my Pinterest and if you have Bloglovin I would really appreciate a follow! I'm very lonely over there!


Thursday, August 13, 2015

Baby Friendly Eateries Dublin

Third Space 

In case you hadn't noticed, going for coffee and scones is my idea of a dream afternoon out. I know, I know, I am absolutely wild. 
When treating ones self to such luxuries when in the company of a toddler there are a number of considerations to be made. Space for a buggy, a high chair, changing room, staff that wont get upset about a child throwing food on the floor etc etc. 
At least once a week Lyla and I go for lunch or coffee, so I have been sussing out the best places to sip and eat in Dublin. We wouldn't be into the usual types of eateries listed as child friendly, Nando's, Milano's etc. We like something with a bit more life and a bit more style so I thought I may as well start reviewing* the places we go in terms of child-friendliness. Obviously just an excuse to keep going on lunch dates, but whatevs. 
So here is my first!

Third Space, Smithfield. 
"Third Space is a place for local people to gather & eat easily, inexpensively & regularly, with space for creative, cultural and community activities."
We first went to ThirdSpace when Lyla was just 8 weeks old. I had joined a mother-baby group in Stoneybatter and afterwards all 8 mama's and babies headed here for a coffee. When the staff cleared a big table for us and  helped bring our buggies up the two steps, I knew I had found where I would be hanging out with my baby for years to come. 
Third Space isn't overly spacious, but it is bright, warm and friendly. It has high chairs, a changing room, and even toys for kids. The staff are so friendly and have never once given out about the mess Lyla makes. In fact they are all smiles with her and go out of their way to say Hiya back to her 14546 times. 
The decor is modern and trendy but not over the top, and the clientele is a nice mix of locals, business-y types and stylish young people working away on their Macs.
They cover all basis with the food, with sandwich's, hearty meals and cakes - something for everyone and the coffee is great, with decaf on the menu for any pregnant ladies, or breastfeeding mums. 
It gets quite busy between 12.30-2 but before and after tend to be quiet enough.

*I have no idea how to actually review, so its more just a list of places, with what they have and pictures...everyone loves a good picture. 

Follow us on Facebook, Bloglovin, Instagram or Twitter....Or all if your feeling particularly nice.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Life Lessons from a Toddler

*Silly Mummy Moment*

Getting a little bit emotional about Lyla learning to walk. Not because it means she's growing up (which, by the way, is happening way to fast), and not because parenting is involve a lot more chasing; but because of what I'm learning from her. 

Toddlers have so many traits we all aspire to as adults. Motivation, courage, perseverance; no matter how many times that child has fallen down she will get right back up again. 

Failure is not part of her vocabulary (admittedly that stretches to about 5 words at the moment!). She wants to walk, and she is going to keep on trying until she does.
Same with using a spoon. I spend an inordinate amount of time scrubbing weetabix (which is a motherf-er to clean) off her face; my face; the floor; the wall; the window... but the lack of food going into her mouth doesn't even deter her from trying. 

I was at an up styling class yesterday and I couldn't get the hang of one of the styles. (A vintage wave

After about half an hour of trying I was ready to give the mannequin a crewcut. I took out my phone and started scrolling through Instagram, I looked at my latest picture, the one above with Lyla walking holding my hand, and got a bit of a reality check. 

I am the worst for letting failure get to me. I have an awful habit of giving up when I find something too difficult and have thought to myself, on many occasions, that I hope Lyla isn't a quitter. Failure, or fear of failure has held me back from doing so many things I could have been great at. It is something I am acutely aware of, and have been proactively trying to fix. This quote is repeated in my head on a daily basis.

                                                                                                                                           Image via Lucy & Lola Creations

Anyway, I put my phone away and tried the style again. And again. And again and again and again, until I created something that vaguely resembles the wave. (Here it is) It was far from perfect, but I was happy enough to have overcome my difficulties and gotten the technique down. Now its about practicing that technique to perfect it. I'm not there yet, but I will get it.

And I have to thank my 15 month old for teaching me this important lesson.

This is the theme tune to this post...if you ignore Aaliyah's dating advice (and diamante choker) and just listen to the chorus. Anyway, tune. 


Thursday, July 30, 2015

Tired Eyes

Teething, feeding, too hot or too cold, an over active mind, anxiety and a severe Instagram obsession have resulted in long term sleep deprivation. For 14 months now I have woken every three hours without fail, resulting in some major dark circles and eye bags. #Glam.

The elusive 8 hours sleep is but a distant memory and as a result I have tried and tested every tip and product aimed at making me look less zombiefied. Fake it till you make it...and by make it I mean get a few hours uninterrupted sleep.... :/

 4 hours broken sleep 
#nomakeupselfie ;)
(Excuse the mirror smudge)

Anyway, here's a few things that are working for me:

1. Hydration - Frequent wakings has wreaked havoc on my skin, leaving it dry and ashen looking. I have always drank a lot of water, but have recently upped my game as I've become all to aware that I am entering my thirties and would like to keep those wrinkles and pores at bay a little longer. Water flushes out excess salt from your skin leaving it brighter and less puffy. I also use an oil or serum under my moisturiser to give an extra little boost. Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse is my oil of choice and it is delish.

2. Exfoliate - Exfoliation gives new life to your skin. Removing dead skin cells and dirt trapped deep in your pores, it instantly makes your skin look bright, vibrant and smooth.

3. Eye Products - The old school trick, of chilled spoons and tea bags helps de-puff before using some products. In the morning I use Mac Fast Response Eye Cream, which is 'A caffeinated cream that de-puffs, firms and erases dark circles and fine lines'. Its good, very good. Before bed I use Clinique All About Eyes, which feels incredibly moisturising, exactly what I need after a day of blood shot, tired eyes. 

4. Make up - Mac Prep and Prime is my holy grail product. Usually it is enough to wear under my eyes on its own but on days where I'm looking particularly bad, its best coupled with Mac Pro Long Wear Concealer. Then just lash on some bronzer and I start to look a little more alive.

5. Sunglasses -  Sunglasses, big sunglasses are every tired Mama's best friend. These ones from Asos are exactly what I need. 


Monday, July 27, 2015

Kid & Coe

I found it. Family friendly holidays that don't involve a Spanish resort or Disney Land, which are fun, but not exactly my idea of relaxing. 
We had decided against holiday this year, as we're the city exploring type and it seemed way too daunting with a toddler in tow. 
Until now that is, I've just come across a holiday rental site full of stylish family friendly rentals. Much like Air B&B but aimed at families. We usually use Air B&B when travelling and have found that staying in a local residence rather than a hotel has definitely added to the experience of a city, as well as working out cheaper. However they probably wouldn't suit us now as we would require the multitude of paraphernalia that comes along with having a toddler. High chairs, cot, and plenty of toys for entertainment. 

Cue Kid & Coe, basically a home away from home, including all the baby equipment you could need. High chairs, cots, toys and space. As well as super stylish interiors for Mama. 
There are homes pretty much everywhere from L.A to Leitrim, although surprisingly there are none in Dublin. (Leitrim though, lol), prices vary on what you are looking for, but their are some surprisingly good value AMAZING properties if your travelling with family and able to share the prices. The website gives all the details you could need for reassurance when travelling with a child, how long to airport, nearest shops,what age the toys supplied are for, etc.

But be warned, scanning through their website will make you want to renovate your house! 

More images saved on my Pinterest

Monday, July 13, 2015

Clean Eating Baby Style

Being an avid blogger (writer & consumer) I see loads of sponsored or production review posts; from clothes & make up, to car seats and holidays. 

When starting this blog, I had decided I wasn't going to get caught up in all pressure of making money or working with brands because to me its more of an outlet: a document of our lives while Lyla is young. I wouldn't like the pressure of having to write about stuff that didn't interest me, nor do I have the time, energy, motivation or creativity to post as much as big timers bloggers do. (Seriously, how do they do it!?)

Lyla enjoys a bit of cleaning

My theory was first put to the test when I was sent some Dettol products to try. I know right? Some bloggers get make up, I get cleaning products. Kinda delighted about that though because as all you Mamas will know: cleaning takes on a whole new importance when you have a baby. Not only because LO leaves a trail of destruction, but also because she is will use any surface as a plate, and is willing to taste everything (not just food). Still, I really hate cleaning; t
his news may surprise some, like Jamie, who yesterday said to me 'You got to hoover and wash the floors all before 10am, dream scenario'. Yeh, thanks. But the quicker/easier I can get it done, the better all round.

Rather clean her own kitchen than mine

For the most part, I'll buy own-brand or special offer cleaning products. Often with mixed results. With time being light, and the load being heavy, it was interesting to use a leading brand like Dettol to see if it made any difference, and most importantly if it made my life any easier!

So the results:

The Dettol Antibacterial Surface Cleanser spray is great for when your in a jam: just spray and wipe with a kitchen towel. No need to rinse away, which I'm always a little bit paranoid about because who wants cleaning products on there food. We wash Lyla's highchair tray a couple of times a day, but you're never quite sure if you're getting everything. This way you can be doubly sure with minimum fuss.

The Wipes do the same job, but for on-the-go. They are perfect for the baby bag. Lyla and I absolutely love ourselves, and as such are total ladies-who-lunch, treating ourselves to coffees and lunches out (milk for Lyla) at least twice a week. The wipes are so handy for wiping down high chairs in restaurants and coffee shops, which are NEVER clean.

 we learnt from, that kitchen sinks are hotspot for bacteria, so just a close inspection that its clean

So there you have it, I wrote a blog post about my favourite cleaning products and not only that, but my 30th is coming up, and when I was asked what I wanted as a present I said 'Maybe a Dyson?' 

What even is my life?

© Lyla & Co.. All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig