Posted in Poems & Stories

Tell yourself you can

Tell yourself you can, you’ll believe it eventually.

Tell yourself you can’t, you’ll believe it instantly.

It takes time to believe in yourself

A daily check-in of mindset,

Regular meetings,

Charts and the like

A flitter of light amongst the shadows of doubt.

It takes time to believe in yourself,

A daily check-in of mindset

Until eventually…

No meeting required,

New habit acquired

Tell yourself you can, you’ll believe it eventually.

Words and image (C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

Standing at the edge of something

Standing at the edge of something,

A discovery,

Something of uncertainty.

Even so,

Curious though.


Heart racing.

Step forward for a closer look

Maybe it will pull me in,

Enlighten me,

Brighten me.

Maybe it will unlock greatness,

Just maybe.

A further step

Uncertainty remains

Right until the plunge

A new world follows,

A place of wonder and delight.

Words and image (C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Books We Love

Book review: Fish by Fiona Watt, Usborne Publishing Ltd

Fish by Fiona Wells, Usborne Publishing Ltd

I’m realising more and more how precious memories are attached to the stories we read to our little people. I love rereading certain titles and reminiscing about milestones, family trips or reading in the fort on a rainy day. We have a few memories attached to this brightly illustrated cloth book entitled Fish, a Usborne cloth book written by Fiona Watt and illustrated by Rachel Wells. Like may of our favourites books I gladly know it off by heart.

“Freddie the fish follows the bubbles…” on an adventure to find his friend Frankie. We meet a few friendly sea creatures along the way including starfish, a crab and jellyfish.

Every time we turn these pages it brings a smile. This was Owen’s first cloth book, he kept it in the bed with him during nap time and loved making crab claws with his hands when Freddie the fish swims “in front of the crab with big claws…”

Eventually when Owen started to talk he would call out ‘fish‘or ‘crab‘. My most favourite part was when Freddie says “Hello Frankie! I been trying to find you.” At this point Owen would shout out ‘Hello Frankie, I’m Bibim!’ (this was what Owen Called himself for ages).

Fish has recently become one of Carson’s favourite books. We told him all about Owen’s adaption of the story and he thinks it’s halarious. Both boys laugh every time we get to the end of the story and say ‘Hello Frankie, I’m Bibim.’

We all recommend making your own special memories and reading Fish.

Title: Fish

Author: Fiona Watt

Illustrator: Rachel Wells

Publisher: Usborne Publishing Ltd

Happy page turning x

(C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Quotes

Summer cleaning is the new spring cleaning at our house

“Organizing is what you do before you do it, so that when you do it, it’s not all mixed up”

– A.A. Milne

This is the latest quote to go on our sticky note wall of wisdom (also known as the side of the fridge).

I am rather partial to organising videos and tips. And have been known to use our constant supply of nappy boxes for storage solutions.

We are determined to have a spring clean at the moment or as it’s a little late let’s call it a summer clean – that way I don’t feel disorganised having a late start. The list of tasks seems endless. And more often then not it feels like we are going round in circles.

My little people like to join in the cleaning fun, which is always fun. They particularly love to vacuum, so much so that a 15 minute job takes around 45 minutes. Especially when they give up on the actual task at hand and decide it’s more fun to wrestle the vacuum (or sea monster)… Maybe our summer clean will turn into an autumn one.

In the meantime I’ll be sure to revisit these wise words from A.A. Milne…a lot. A reminder to take a step back and have a plan.

Quote by A.A. Milne

Happy pages turning x

Words and image (C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

We blinked and you grew

This is the last week of term but for us (and many Mums and Dads we know) it’s the last week of nursery. In August our older son Owen will officially be in primary school or P1. Following many, many discussions with other parents it seems we are all emotional wrecks while the children are so excited and keep asking when is nursery over? When will I go to big school?

I find myself repeating the same questions and statements:

How is it already time for primary school?
It feels like we blinked and here we are.
When did they get so big?
I wish we could turn back time.

After crying at the kitchen table this morning (while our toddler, Carson, took full advantage and drew on the table) I forced myself to dig deep and find out why I feel so emotional. Primary School is indeed a huge milestone yet I feel..sad. When other important milestones were achieved such as crawling, first steps, first words we celebrated. All very well documented and stored on the cloud (with no real filing system, but that is for another day) and when the first day of P1 arrives we will no doubt give it equal attention and make sure everything is photographed and recorded.

Just as he was ready to crawl, walk and talk Owen is ready for the next phase of adventure. Don’t get me wrong we are so excited for the new phase (and all the art projects šŸ™‚ but are not as ready as Owen is.

We always thought this time was way in the future and it’s arrived way too quickly! This is the beginning of more independence and more time away from us. And the reality is less cuddles, less opportunities to play together, less dependency, less how it is now.

Our well-known routine is about to change massively. It’s unknown and scary.

I have asked parents with older children if it gets easier, the answer is always no. Just as we get used to one routine they will grow and things will change. Is all part of the ‘joys of parenting’ as my Dad says.

I’m sure it will feel like this at the beginning of every school year, on the last day of primary, first day of high school, the first day of university, when they leave the nest, get married and so on and so forth. We can’t turn back time, we can’t stop time. So the only option is to embrace this time and all the times to come.

Through all these emotions and fear of change I have come to realise that there will be one constant, it will always be there through every milestone and can only grow stronger. Love.

Love for our little people as they become big people will always be.

When the day arrives hopefully we will feel ready and before you know it we will be consumed by a new routine that will become the new normal until it is just normal. We will still read and play and learn and grow. As our children grow we too will grow and learn as parents. We will have so many more exciting milestones and changes.

Pen to paper is usually my solution when all the emotions creep up. Here we go:

Your footprints in the sand


I’ve always watched your footprints beside mine in the sand,

Slowly growing and mostly running

I’ve been there to hold your hand

To catch you after stumbles

And to chase your quick getaways.

Now when I turn around I see…

I see how your footprints have grown,

I’m not sure how we got here so fast,

More than 1,700 days of joy.

One blink, maybe two and you grew

I remember how excited you got when we blew bubbles at the park

I remember how you called yourself ‘Bibbim’ instead of Owen

I remember the making robots and a cardboard shop from the recycling box

It’s all seems like yesterday is the cliche you will hear me say…a lot

I wish we could go back and experience everything again and again

I know that’s impossible

Instead I’ll reflect for a little

While watching you play

I see a confident, mind-blowing person

Ready to take new steps

Holding my hand a little less,

But brilliantly being you!

When I look forward I see a journey of greatness

I see a bigger version of you

I’ll still walk with you but I think you will lead the way more and more

In many ways you already do

No matter how big those footprints get

Never forget how strong you are

How talented, creative and precious

My footprints won’t be far behind

Always here for anything.

Let’s play now,

Run and make shapes in the sand

I smile as you hold my hand…

Happy page turning x

Words and image (C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories, Uncategorized

Is that a lion I hear?

It’s been a while since my last post as I have been working on a project but I have really missed everyone here and am so pleased to be back šŸ™‚

This poem followed after seeing the lions at a recent zoo trip. It reminded me of a time when hubby and I took a walk around Corstorphine Hill, Edinburgh and heard a lion roar.

Is that a lion I hear?

Is that a lion I hear?

It can’t be,

I live in Scotland you see…

But again I hear a roar,

So familiar,

So dear.

A sound from home,

The place where he is king,

Where he roams.

Is that a lion I hear?

Couldn’t be,

I live in Scotland you see.

I’ve taken a walk to explore the land,

Corstorphine Hill,

Beautiful and grand

Views like no other,




I hear it again, that roar.

Tread carefully, that sound is true.


Perhaps I was mistaken.

Further steps lead to a realisation.

(Perhaps I should have known)

Corstorphine Hill has a neighbour, Edinburgh Zoo.

Amusement ensues.

Is that a lion I hear?

Yes it is, majestic and true.

Two homes, two hearts merge in two.

(C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

Only little for a little

This week it feels like the home has been a constant mess. The more I tried to tidy upĀ the worse it got.Ā  As one box was filled another was emptied. As one pile of clothing was folded another pile was unfolded and used as superhero attire.Ā  As the dishes where cleared I blinked and as if by magic an even bigger stack appeared – a very generous dish fairy indeed.

I do try to ignore theĀ mess and not let it cause me stress, but it does – sometimes ridiculously so. As I continued to try (in vain) to clean it eventually dawned on me to just accept it. A sigh of relief, honestly. As if a pair ofĀ rose-coloured glassesĀ instantly hidĀ the mess and focused onĀ little smiles. These are the words that followed:


Accept the mess
Have a small corner of your own –
If possibleĀ a neat and tidy one.
A haven to provide a sanity moment.

Accept the mess,
Deny the overwhelming stress
Rather embrace the opportunity to learn and play.
Why just yesterday we discovered something;
Roll a ball of play dough across the kitchen floor and will pick upĀ someĀ crumbs –
Who knew?
Add a frame around those scribbles on the wall,
You never know may just beĀ the next generation’s Picasso

Accept the mess
Sooner or later the fort will lose its intrigue
And the little ones will move onto something more inviting,
Perhaps of the sticky variety,
Maybe this is where a distraction in the form of aĀ snack is required.

Accept the mess,
Deny the overwhenling stress.
Little ones are only little for a little after all.
Soon enough you’ll miss the mess,
Sticky fingers, mismatched socksĀ and satisfied smiles.

Accept the mess
Put down the cloth and play a while,
You’ll be happy that you did.
Superheroes wearing Daddy’s pants are awfully amusing.
Shaking water out the sippy cup is actually rather fun.
And remember if the mess causes stress retreat to your corner
Breath in and out – maybe hide a blockĀ of chocolate for an energy boost.
Then take a deep breath and plunge right in.
Indulge in every moment.
That’s what it’s all about, after all.


Words and image (C) Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

Capturing a rainbow

Rain plus sunshine equals a rainbow
What an awesome sight,
The sky filled with colours so bright.
I love to just sit and stare.
counting all the colours, seven.
But then it fades away,
Maybe it will be back another day.

The weatherman said
Sunny with rain today,
The perfect setting for a rainbow.
Today I’ll capture it
Using my sketchbook and paint
So it wont fade away
I’ll keep it, it’ll stay.

My paintbox has only three colours though
The ones they call primary:
Red, blue and yellow.
But rainbows have seven colours
And the clouds are starting to form.
How will I find four more?
I think for a moment and scratch my head,
Then remember something I once read

Mix two primary colours equally and soon you’ll see something amazing, truly
A transformation into colours new, the ones they call secondary
Orange, green and purple too.
Red plus yellow equals orange
Yellow plus blue equals green
Red plus blue equals purple

What about indigo (also called dark blue)?
I remember something about this too:
Mostly blue with a little red equals indigo.
Now I am ready, the paints are all mixed
All I need is a rainbow to capture…

The sun is shining and its starting to rain
The rainbow is here again!
Showing all the colours
Red, orange and yellow too
Then its green followed by blue
Purple and indigo are the last two.

Rain plus sunshine equals a rainbow
What an awesome sight
So fantastic with colours so bright
I love to just sit and stare
counting all the colours, seven.
Today I captured my own rainbow
I’ll keep it, it will stay
Until it fills the sky another day.


Words and image copyright Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Books We Love

WOW! said the Owl by Tim Hopgood


WOW! Said the Owl by Tim Hopgood

Colours have been the theme of the household recently. From teaching our 1 year old Carson the colours (orange seems to be the favourite and it conveniently also seems to be his favourite fruit) to teaching Owen (4 years old) about the primary colours (red, yellow and blue) and how to mix them to create the secondary colours (orange, purple and green). We have also been looking at all the colours of the rainbow.

Sticking with the colour theme it feels appropriate to suggest WOW! said the Owl by Tim Hopgood.Ā This vibrantly coloured book is one of my personal favourites – another great read provided in Owen’s toddler Bookbug bag.

The story follows a curious owl who fights her nocturnal instinct sleep all day. Instead she sleeps all night and wakes with the morning sun. Immediately she she is amazed by all the fantastic colours.

“WOW” said the owl. She couldn’t believe her eyes! The sky was a warm and wonderful pink.

Readers join in her journey and soon enough an array of vibrant colours are discovered in the clouds, trees, butterflies and more. The sun is still shining but then it starts to rain resulting in a rainbow.

“WOW!” said the owl as a beautiful rainbow filled the sky with colour.

As night approaches the colours start to change. The evening sky is filled with its own variety of fantastic colours. She soon concludes:

But “WOW! said the owl”
“The night-time stars are the most beautiful of all”

Additionally the book has a colour pallet on the last page which encourages readers to have a another look through the book to spot individual colours.

Both boys really love this book and we find ourselves rereading it over and over in one sitting. All I can say is WOW!Ā We definitely recommend reading this entertaining and educational book.

Title: WOW! Said the Owl
Author: Tim Hopgood
Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books

Happy page turning x















Posted in Poems & Stories

Creation of wonder



Trilogy of the primary source
Confident to stand alone yet

Ready for a meeting of meant-to-be
Inevitably producing a trilogy of the secondary source

The palette is generous
Step by step each combination provides an explosion of amazement
A variety of every shade
A creation of wonder


Words and Image Copyright Lisa Moralee McLardy