Facing down the Summer with Marks and Spencer

There’s a smell of summer in the air round these parts. The clouds have momentarily parted and a few desolate rays of sunshine have managed to sneak on out through those grey winter skies. On feeling the warmth on our pale winter skin, we go a little crazy. Out with the winter woolies & bring on the summer wear.

Summer time in Ireland means one of two things:

  1. Long summer evenings sipping Chardonnay as the kids frolic in the garden, daisies in their hair, barefoot & smelling of Coconut Suncream, as Alpha-Male tosses a few shrimp on the Barbie’
  2. Rain.

We all know that no 1 is but a mere fantasy. A scenario painted by Enid Blyton to lull us all in to a false sense of security that there is light at the end of the tunnel (yes, I took poetic licence and subbed the ginger beer for Chardonnay – sorry Enid, I’m sure you don’t mind me making it 2017 relevant).

Surviving holidays is not for the light hearted. I keep revisiting the same tear-inducing scenario time and again every summer, determined this time I will not be beaten. It’s become a thing. The great school holidays & the Irish climate all pitched against team ME. But determination and I are kindred spirits. You can’t keep a good mum down.


The good mum that I am has kitted the gang out in Marks & Spencer for the change of season. Durable, stylish, trendy & a burst of summer even on the dullest of days. With pure cotton trousers with options for full or 3/4 length, we are prepared for every eventuality weather-wise! Dinosaur cotton T-shirts with maximum “scarability” keep even the busiest and dirtiest of boys out of trouble. Marks & Spencer Ireland make it easy for parents – that’s the life I’m after.

My budding fashionista’s were more than suitably attired to take on the sunshine in a cotton necklace sequin top – just the correct injection of glamour in an age appropriate fashion – & a pure cotton embellished dress respectively. The hardest part was making a decision from the huge range of dresses which you can shop here.


Suitably attired we are going to beat the system and eat al fresco! A practice run for all those summer picnics we’ll be having. Picnic’s are great – the kids love them and they are sure as hell less expensive than spending a day’s wages in a restaurant for your kids to reject their food instead of yours!

I have shopper envy here – would it be wrong to steal my daughters bag and pass it off as my own? You can buy it here. 

This time 2nd born won’t spend 2 hours making a 2ft long daisy chain that 4th born will obliterate with one swoosh of his chubby arm and proceed to try and eat. Thereby reducing 2nd born to a howling mess that can be heard everywhere within a 10 mile radius.Surely 3rd born won’t turn himself into a human cannonball on the trampoline  again (seriously who actually put that thing so close to the tree house and how did I know that jumping off the tree house and onto it would be a THING??)


Since I popped this up on my Instagram stories and Snapchat (Leanmeanmomma) I was asked load of times when on the site it was – so you can shop it here from Marks & Spencer.

Hubster won’t spend 25 minutes taking out all the cushions for the patio furniture.

“You actually think we live in Australia, don’t you? I HATE these things. And my eye’s are bleeding – oh no sorry – that is just the smoke from the BBQ that has me BLINDED. BBQing in gale force winds is ridiculous wife!” 

This time it won’t drizzle on and off for the rest of the evening so we won’t have to relay the “blasted” patio cushions in and out every 15 minutes. Hubster silently cursing me under his breath and muttering like a mad man whilst I try to appease the situation with ……. well, more wine probably.


By the time the food is cooked we won’t have lost the will to live and relocated the whole picnic back into the house next time. 4th born won’t have eaten his body weight in crisps (like there is so much reasoning you can do with a hungry 18 month old). 3rd born won’t have dug a hole you could lose a digger in. 2nd born won’t be wearing the entire dossier of garden flowers in her hair, including that rare petunia that flowers once every 5 years. 1st won’t have smuggled her iPad into the only spot in the garden that has WIFI. I won’t have drank all of the wine. And hubster won’t be mentally building a man cave in the bottom right hand corner of the garden, with blacked out windows and separate concealed entrance that he will never reveal to us.

No next time it’ll be great. We’ll dance in the warm glow of the evening sun until dusk. We’ll toast marshmallows and sing Kumbaya with our arms intertwined around the glowing embers of the BBQ.

Ha! Who am I fooling?! I’ll settle for burned sausage and some limp lettuce once it’s easy. 

Your’s, dreaming of the Bali Sunshine in dull grey Cork,



All clothes featured are from Marks and Spencer Ireland

Collaboration supported by Shopping Links & Marks and Spencer.



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