Read First

This blog is largely about me muddling my way through life and faith. Being a relatively new Christian, I’m trying to work out what it means to follow Jesus in today’s world as a 32 year old woman in the North East of England who loves playing rugby, throwing great big parties and gardening. All of which I think Jesus would totally approve.

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Just like anyone else, life throws up challenges, and I’ll be writing about how I face these and where I think God is in the picture. Mostly, I don’t quite know. I struggle to pray. I don’t always discern what the Holy Spirit is doing in my life and sometimes I wonder just what God’s playing at. Especially when times get tough, which, of late, they have been. Really tough, actually.

I write about stuff that people don’t often talk about, for example PTSD and infertility, to name two biggies.

In part, this is because I think it might help people who are facing the same problems. They may recognise their own situations in my writing, and so get some help, or better understand those around them. That would be great. I also write because it helps me put into words what I can’t often say out loud. I usually cry way before I’ve said what I wanted to say. And I also write because I want to share how my faith has changed my life for the better. Hopefully I do this in a way that isn’t ramming it down people’s throats.

I want to leave space for people with their own views and beliefs, and as I’ve already stated, I don’t have all the answers. I’m a proper novice. The reason I mention my faith throughout most of my blogs is because it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I suppose it’s like how other bloggers may find Cross Fit and want to mention that in their blogs here and there, because they love how it’s changed their lives and want to share that with others. Hey, a reader may even give it a go…?

So join me in these blogs as I work out what this life stuff is all about. You’ll find accounts from my experiences as an Army Officer serving in Afghanistan and other parts of the world, my experiences of different cultures, my attempt to discern what God wants me to be and do, and my observations as a newcomer in the quirky and marvelous world of the local parish church.

“With God, all things are possible.” Matt 19.26

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Well what a day! I have such generous, hard-working and wonderful friends. Seven people answered the call and came to help yesterday, and the results are amazing. SO grateful for your help. Literally just couldn't have done it without you. From removing patio slabs to discovering 6 inches of concrete, this garden renovation has been MUCH costlier in time, effort and pounds than I could have ever predicted, but the massive silver lining is the community effort yesterday. It was so cool labouring in the sun among friends and taking it in turns to "play with Elizabeth in the nursery" (take a breather) Hoping to have the turf laid soon.
🙈 when granddad looks after the baby...😂 #rta #grandparenting #funnybaby #instababies #instababy #realparenting #oops #bloopers #uhoh #caraccident
So proud of our strong little girl who finally cracked the stairs yesterday after trying all week. She's so determined. Will have to keep an even closer eye on her now though. Also need to teach how how to safely get down stairs 🙄 #9monthsold #adventurebaby #effort #stronggirlscan #strongbaby #babygirl #parenting #mothersdaughter #clothnappies #clothbum #reusablenappies #raisethemwild #barefootbaby #minime #motherhood
A most perfect day with my daughter, niece and mum. So grateful for this beautiful weather and company. #famalam #motherdaughter #bambinamia #bebe #chica #nona #barefootbaby #raisethemwild #adventure #motherhood #parenting #mothersdaughter #englishcastle
Swinging through the trees with my monkey on my back. NEVER too old for a play park. #adventurebaby #raisethemwild #barefootbaby #wildparenting #greatoutdoors #baby #adventuremum #wildchild #babyled #greenparenting
Loved spending this gorgeous sunny day out walking with my funny little bark-eating mini me. Her energy and curiosity are so great and so exhausting!! The walk itself (9.4 miles) was really dull, and all along a narrow road, but the destination was cool. A little play area for Elizabeth, and a cold beer and warm brownie and ice cream for me! Still on the lookout for decent walks near Darlington, so hit me with your suggestions. I'm after circular routes, preferably off-road, approx 10 miles. Extra points for pub half way but not essential as we like picnics. Will travel 40 mins away by car. To get to a good walking location. #hikingmama #greatoutdoors #babywearing #babycarrying #postpartumfitness #postpartumfitnessjourney #postpartum #babycarrier #hiking #hikingbaby #raisethemwild #outdoorlife #funinthesun #nature #barefootbaby #hike #minime #motherhood #parenting #mumswholift #fitfam #mothersdaughter #grassfed #freerange #gentlepatenting #natural #countryside
Family fun in the sun. Transforming our patio garden into a beautiful lawn... but this is a bigger job than I'd anticipated, and phase two is hiring a pneumatic drill 😖 Pretty sure she won't sleep through phase two. #fatherdaughter #family #diydad #grandad #sling #babywearing #babycarrying #postpartumfitness #gardening #extremegardening #everydayisaliftingday #weightlifting #mamaswholift
Yesterday the youngest of the Phillips Clan was baptised by the fabulous Revd Gemma Sampson, in a beautiful service among family and friends. A day full of laughter, joy, generosity and even a magic trick. Big thanks to everyone who made it possible, especially the gorgeous cake by Katie and Katherine. It was superb. Really loved having our family there, especially those who had to travel far. Xxxx @the_misplaced_explorer @tonyp1166 @ieshaphillips @suephillips123 #baptism #christian #christening #church #childofgod #family #daughter #holyoil #churchofengland
🌍 P I L G R I M P A L S 🌍 • • This last week wouldn't have been possible without these two fine men. Thank you so much to @tonyp1166 for walking with me, providing endless banter and for keeping us to the route almost all of the time! • • And to my amazing husband "Team Recce" for doing all the glamorous work like the laundry, organising accommodation and a million other tasks that made the hiking that much easier. Just knowing you were there as back-up if our baby needed you meant I could focus on the important stuff, like getting a thigh to ankle tan. You rock. ....... • #caminobaby #galicia #buencamino #finisterre #hikingmama #hikingbaby #raisethemwild #outdoorlife #greatoutdoors #babyled #greenparenting #adventuremum #wildchild #babyled #greenparenting #adventuremum #caminodesantiago #theway #recce #logisticalsupport #realparenting #motherhood #hiking
Portraits of the Camino #baby #nina #bebe #bambina #babywearing #babycarrying #babypilgrim #caminobaby #adventurebaby #wildchild #raisethemwild #outdoorbaby #hikingbaby #babyshark #ecobaby #ivfbaby #pilgrim #thoseeyes #daughter #familytime #spain #caminodesantiago #buencamino #finisterre #hikingmama #outdoorlife #portraitphotography #faces #family #pilgrimage
La familia The baby #baby #nina #bebe #bambina #babywearing #babycarrying #babypilgrim #caminobaby #adventurebaby #wildchild #raisethemwild #outdoorbaby #hikingbaby #babyshark #ecobaby #ivfbaby #pilgrim #thoseeyes #daughter #familytime #spain #caminodesantiago #buencamino #finisterre #hikingmama #outdoorlife
The baby #baby #nina #bebe #bambina #babywearing #babycarrying #babypilgrim #caminobaby #adventurebaby #wildchild #raisethemwild #outdoorbaby #hikingbaby #babyshark #ecobaby #ivfbaby #pilgrim #thoseeyes #daughter
Carrying my baby on the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in Spain was made so much simpler because of the kit I used. I wondered if I could get away with taking either the front sling (Manduca) or back pack carrier (Deuter Kid comfort II) but was advised to take both. I'm so glad I did. The front sling meant Elizabeth could feed and snooze all snuggled up on the chilly early mornings, but could then be moved into the backpack when she woke, so that she could look around and get some air. It was much easier to control her temperature in the backpack. The coat I wear is specially made for baby wearing in the great outdoors and it's bloody brilliant! It's by Mamalia and I love love love it. #hikingbaby #raisethemwild #outdoorlife #greatoutdoors #babyled #greenparenting #adventuremum #wildchild #hikingmama #camino #caminodesantiago #theway #thegreatoutdoors #outdoorlife #babyexplorer #goexplore #adventure #motherhood #parenting #mothersdaughter #hiking #walking #caminobaby #babycarrying #babywearing #deuterkidcomfortii #motherhoodrising #vivecamino #hikingwithbabies #hikingmom @caminodesantiago
Can I breastfeed whilst hiking? Yes I can! I've just walked the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in Spain carrying my baby and what a relief it was that I didn't once have to worry about feeding her. One less thing to think about. Breastfeeding isn't always easy; it can be very painful at first, uncomfortable, overwhelming, difficult and can feel embarrassing at times (though that's changing). But wow is it convenient!! With a couple of adjusted straps I didn't even need to break step to feed my little pilgrim in my Manduka carrier, meaning fewer stops and less stress. She fed all over #galicia and what was totally unexpected was the number of women of all nationalities who walked alongside me and congratulated me for my breastfeeding journey. So many mums shared their bf experiences and were so encouraging. It's a really lovely thing to bond over. So to all my friends and other mamas out there just starting out, good for you. Keep going and get help if it's tough. @canibreastfeedinituk #normalizebreastfeeding #breastfeeding #breastfeedingawareness #breastfeedinginpublic #boob #boobclub #mamasmilk #babywearing #babycarrying #caminodesantiago #lll #lalecheleague #leche #milch #mama #baby #caminobaby #motherhood #babyled #greenparenting #adventurebaby #gentlepatenting #natural
Oops... deleted the original post. Here it is again. Day 2 Camino de Santiago. #raisethemwild #santiagodecompostella #camino #caminodesantiago #theway #hiking #hikingbaby #babywearing #babycarrying #postpartumfitness #postpartumfitnessjourney #postpartum #outdoorbaby #greenparenting #adventuremum #breastfeeding #pilgrimage #pilgrims #baby #deuterkidcomfortii #adventurebaby #galicia #buencamino
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