Entries in mothers (4)


Mother's Day 2017 - some gift ideas


Isn't Mother's Day really rather wonderful?  A whole day dedicated to celebrating our Mums.  Whether that's with a homemade card or breaksfast in bed.  A walk on the beach or dinner out.  There are lots of things you can do the most important is spending time with your Mum.  

Marks and Spencer have some really delightful gifts for Mother's Day.  I adore their handtied bouquet of 100 stems of tulips and daffodils.

Daffodils like sunflowers are flowers that smile at you from the ground.  Looking at them makes me happy, their bright vibrant yellow reminding us of the joy of spring.

Marks and Spencer handmade nougat is a real treat soft chewy nougat with fresh crisp hazelnuts and pistachios, are blended with English spring honey and dried sour cherries.  You could enjoy it on a car trip with Mum for something to nibble or after dinner with coffee.  I would even say you could have a bit at elevense.

 This hummingbird tin filled with Scottish shortbread it vibrant and full of energy, Marks and Spencer have really chosen a winner with this colourful motif.  I love that the tin can be used after the shortbread is long eaten, filled with buttons or bobins.  

Bubbles are an essential part of any celebration - but don't whatever you do buy cheap and nasty one's - enjoy the light freshness of this Monticella DOCG Prosecco Jeroboam prosecco from Marks and Spencer.  It is a fresh lemony and light aromatic wine with pear and gooseberry, apple and violet hints, the finish is dry.  It is also available in a magnum bottle which is great fun, a party in a bottle, or so they say.

Craft 3 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc from Marks and Spencer is refreshing and light.  Its a good Sauvignon Blanc - with a pink grapefruit and fruity palate that is not overly bitter on the palate.  There are hints of the usual gooseberry and passionfruit, but its herby aroma makes this an interesting wine with a good texture.

I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day.


That's it for now ...


Salt & Sparkle = Life Remarkable


The women that helped make me the woman I am today a guest post by That Belfast Girl

Today to continue our new series 'Celebrating Mothers' as we wait for Mother's Day falls on the 30 March in Ireland, this year we are absolutely thrilled to welcome back the fun, funky and fabulous That Belfast Girl, as she shares with us about the women who made her the women she is today.  I just know you will find this post as inspirational as I do.

I have been blessed with a great mum. I was born in at the start of the 1990s and my mum was a single parent by the time I was two years old. Most people would be down-hearted by this but I am not. My mum has worked my whole life to give me everything I need, plus far more.

A huge part of me having this amazing life has been down to my grandmother who has supported us through thick and thin. My grandmother, like my mother, was also a single parent so understood the bounds of time, money and emotional baggage that comes with being a lone parent.

I think like so many girls of my generation, the grandmother in many ways becomes a second parent. This can be both amazing and confusing at the same time! For school concerts or big events in my life, my mum and grandmother attended and as the years went on, I realised the crowds were filled with more and more of these combinations. As well as my mum and grandmother, my life has been filled with great female role models.

My first role model in life was my Sunday School teacher. She was kind-hearted and genuinely loved children. I met her as a three or four year old and almost twenty years later, I still look up to her and ask her for life advice on all manner of things. At school I was lucky to be taught by some amazing women.

My Primary One teacher inspired me to pursue a life as an educator as the beginnings of my education began so firmly under her wonderful guidance. At secondary school I took singing lessons and always made to feel confident by two wonderful women who coached me over those seven years.

In my final year of school, as an awkward and unsure eighteen year old, a caring and inspiring woman took me under her wing and continues to provide me today with fantastic advice and a shoulder to cry on. While doing my under-graduate degree I met so many women that changed my life.

My dissertation supervisor was the best craic and our chats on Politics often turned into talks about life. While at university I joined Belfast Community Gospel Choir and our director has provided me with many words of encouragement over the last number of years.

The choir has provided me with abundant opportunities to meet lifelong friends… including the owner of this blog! My blogging career has also allowed me to meet some inspiring women.

One of my blog friends has become a hugely positive influence in my life over the past two years. I met her at an extremely bad time in my life and her guidance and support have undoubtedly helped contribute to the happy young woman that I am today.

I am only in my early twenties so I am excited to meet the rest of the women who will shape my life. I am excited to have children so they can meet all of these inspiring adoptive aunties! I feel honoured to know all of these women- strong, interesting, compassionate and unwavering in their love, support and guidance.

You never know that you might be a role model to someone through your actions or words. Thank you to my mother, my grandmother and all of the aforementioned women who have made me into “me”.

Happy Mother’s Day


That Belfast Girl

follow That Belfast Girl 


That Belfast Girl and Salt & Sparkle would love to hear from you about women that have shaped your life, please get in touch - comment, Twitter, Facebook or Email.

That's it for now ...


Salt & Sparkle = Life Remarkable


When Sister's Pray - a guest post by Jennifer Camp

Today to continue our new series 'Celebrating Mothers' as we wait for Mother's Day falls on the 30 March in Ireland, this year we are absolutely thrilled to welcome the truly beautiful Jennifer Camp, who writes inspiringly at her blog You are My Girls, as well as writing Loop a personal and prophetic letter of encouragement, you can receive to your email box three times a week - you can sign up here for Loop.  Jennifer has some powerful words to share with us about 'when sister's pray' I know you will enjoy them as much as I have.

Tucked up in my lap, fair head pressed back against mine, daughter’s breath touches warm on my skin. Intake and outtake of air in these lungs, beating this heart—I can take this miracle for granted.

How, Father, do I breathe? 

I inhale, wanting to lean, too, within this circle of women who pray.  My daughter leans against me, her support, five-year-old legs dangling long, and I bend my head forward, pressing my own head against hers. 

Two daughters clinging to what makes them feel safe.


The prayers lift up, mothers’ hearts joining His: This daughter’s heart wounded, this son’s words to his brother igniting conflict, this son, almost a teenager, challenged to stand for what he knows is true.  Another son longing to discern whispers He speaks to his heart and the Father to say, “yes, listen, I am here.”

We lift up these heartaches, these breaths pushed down, to rise. And we see.

There is nothing more sacred, more humbling, more beautiful, than breathing in these voices of women—sisters—with whom I have connected, over the years, in prayer. We pray and receive breath. We pray for each other’s children and are blessed with His words our own.

A prayer, the groaning of hearts lifted up, is found in community, yes—but more so, by breathing in the breath of the One who loves and who shows us each how.

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God (Romans 8: 26-27).

I have few words--His air my own, my heart His (and what, even, is a word, but life, breath?)—but trust the words He prompts will come. He knows this heart of mine, the aches and pulls, the old stuff pushed down, the new, on the surface, just breaking again, in waves, to rise.

Sisters, let’s rise.

Prayers He forms—His breath true, beautiful, holy, life. Love knows no other way. And He in me speaks no other language but love. The Father in me. His Spirit coming to give me breath.


I sit at His feet, little girl heart looking up.  But I feel His breath, my intake of love, and I breathe out.


Will you breathe with me, sisters? Can we stand together, circled up, leaning close to listen, and pray? How can I pray for you?


Jennifer Camp, author of Loop, grew up in the middle of an almond orchard in Northern California. She loves to write . . . but she especially loves to encourage people to seek and live out the truth of their story, their identity in Christ. You can connect with Jennifer and follow her over on her blog, You are My Girls. 

That's it for now ...


Salt & Sparkle = Life Remarkable





Five Minute Friday - Motherhood should come with


Friday has come again, just where I ask myself has this week gone - into the madness I think is the answer.

?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1304698052508" alt=""/>

Five Minute Friday - How exciting to have the prompt this week, and just to write for five minutes, to go for it, and see what happens.  How I love to do that!  

I am a bit apprehensive because the title is - 'Motherhood should come with'


Well, I am not really sure what motherhood should come with, and I don't feel particularly qualified to comment, as I am not a Mother - yet - I think the yet is important, because you know what, I am really looking forward to that day, and I am praying about it now.  I choose to Hope.

My mum is awesome, totally amazing, and to be her daughter is a blessing, an honour and a privilege.  Mums, makes me smile, she let's me cry, and she holds me when I am confused.  She's a sounding board, as I speak out words of concepts that I am trying to clarify and make sense of.  She asks hard questions, and she lets me work out answers without always trying to provide them for me.  She stands by me when I have to make tough decisions, and she says 'Its okay, you can do it.  Keep going'.

I think perhaps Motherhood should come with the warning - 'LET IT BE' don't try to manage everything, don't try to second guess, and know what to expect, don't be controlling, but breathe, love your children, and know you can get through everything without having read fifty billion books, just take it slow.  Surround your self with people who love you, who will encourage and support you, but know that as a mother to trust your instincts, something books cannot ever give you.

Last year my pal was pregnant, I honestly believe she and Amazon had an affair going on, everyday several books would arrive.  When I visited her, her living room had become a mecca of mothering books.  Let me tell you this, sure there were some interesting things in the books, but you know what folks, those books took away her belief in herself, she went from being confident, to a person who couldn't make a decision until she had read several books on the topic, she lost her instincts.  It was so sad to see, her birth was a nightmare, and she was very ill afterwards, and it took a long time for her and the little one to bond.  My mum and I watched on in great sadness, because there was nothing we could say, as we weren't the books.

So I give to soon to be mummy's out there, some paraphrased words from my own Mama:

'Trust your instincts, you can do this, believe in yourself, and know that you were born to do this, regardless of what your life looks like, or what your career is.  Let people hold your hand, its not wrong to reach out to others for help, encouragement and dare I say it advice.  Put the books down, and just 'LET IT BE.'

Spread your wings everyone - because you will fly!


That's it for now.


salt and sparkle = life remarkable