Archive - September, 2013

30.09.13 My Morning

So I’m obsessed with knowing what other people do in the morning. Who makes their bed, who showers before the kids are up, who plans their outfits the night before and what time people get up when they also have kids to get ready, dressed and fed.  Mornings are special to me because they represent those moments as the world wakes up, as my family wakes up, often foggy eyed and sleepy, often the time when they look the most beautiful to me and say the most interesting things. After a good night’s sleep the world seems a better place and the morning offers a day of possibility…anything could happen.

It took until 11.58am to get organised enough to take that picture above. Enough said.


my morning

my morning

Mornings are crazy. Most of the time the kids come into bed for a ‘cuddle’/bundle/bed jumping session before we get up ourselves. I’d love to get up early and be ready before they wake but it never seems to happen. 7am is pretty standard time for getting up though if I can, I eek it out til 7.30am. The kids are just so much fun in the morning.

kids curtains

I made a rule that on a school day no one goes downstairs unless they are dressed and have their teeth cleaned. It works about 50% of the time. There is a lot of timewasting in this house. I figure at least if they are dressed what’s the worst that can happen if we’re running late? They eat breakfast in the car.

7.15 still undressed.

my morning

As soon as I get up I put in my contact lenses so I can see clearly again. They are like some kind of miracle. If I’m not going to the gym I’ll shower and get dressed. i love my shower especially super hot.


7.30am ish

my morning

On a school day its cereal, toast, crumpets, yoghurts…anything easy and quick.

Then time to get shoes on, catch up on any spellings, check their bags, make waters/packed lunches, and watch a bit of TV if they have time.

It doesn’t matter how organised I am , I always seem to end up rushing to get them to school.

It’s a relief to drop them off on time and then Lola and I come home and I try and sneak in a few emails or bit of editing/surfing while i drink a cup of tea and before anything else I have planned.

Tracey Chalk's office

Today we played, put washing on, cleaned up the kitchen and met some friends in town. We leave the house about 11.58am.

my morning

The morning goes quickly and today I forgot to make the bed…again.

So what’s your morning like?

If you liked this, check out what Karine from Bodie and Fou‘s weekend was like from my new series here.



10.09.13 OUR HOUSE: Vicky Holmes & her beautifully designed family fun house

Vicky Holmes house

Vicky Holmes is a talented portrait photographer based in Essex who lives in this modern new build with her husband Daniel and daughter Izabel. Since shooting her home, they have since added another beautiful little girl to their family. Lucky Eliza!

When you meet Vicky you feel an instant sense of calm. She’s laid back and smiley and when you get over staring at how naturally beautiful she is, you realise how professional she is, all at the same time. She’s the girl who could live without make up for a year and still look immaculately fresh, bright and beautiful. Just like her house.

Vicky Holmes house

Vicky Holmes house

Vicky Holmes house sitting room

Vicky Holmes Living Room

To see the full house tour, click on the link below.

Continue Reading…


02.09.13 France with kids: Hossegor

Where we stay in South West France is close to two of my favourite towns. Hossegor is one of them and where I’d live if I could have a second house… and a few spare million in the bank.


It’s a surfer town full of the cool kids. It’s charming, and laid back, with a swag of arrogance about it too. It’s the French version of Newquay with a lot of style. Even we had to tape down our wallets to stop ourselves buying Sebby a £100 skateboard, just because it was so damn cool. There are loads of cafes, surfer shops and small independent boutiques. You won’t find tons of children’s toys or clothes here but the kids were quite happy checking out the surfboards and skateboards and choosing gelato ice cream from what seemed like over 100 flavours.

hossegor gelato

It’s a well known World Class surfing spot, hosting the Quicksilver Pro France Competition stage of the ASP World Tour. It has sandy beaches which are also good for swimming, making sandcastles and general people watching and is patrolled by lifeguards between mid May and September. Apart from the beach however, there is also a canal and a huge seawater lake (du lac) which is surrounded partly by sand and on one side, large pathways and steps perfect for walking, cycling and fishing from. You can also take out pedalos for those kids that like a little water adventure.

Plus about 50m from the lake and the shopping centre is a shaded children’s playground, with a carousel and snack bar, perfect for a break from the shops or the heat of the Summer. Cycling is one of the best ways to get around but it’s not too big to walk around the main centre and take it all in. Summer can get busy for parking although you’ll generally find a space up a side street and walk into the centre.

The houses are a real mix of traditional French and stunning contemporary creations. There are a lot of new houses which could give any design lover a lesson in successful modern architecture and this in itself is worth exploring the area for.

My tips… after going to the beach:

Buy nets and fish at the side of the lake. Especially when the weather is not that sunny. It’s a great way to pass a few hours looking for baby fishes and crabs!



My favourite homeware boutique: L’air du Sud 2 .

Our favourite eating spot with kids; Salon du the Marcot. It has  a small section inside and out but a larger seating area in the middle square opposite the restaurant, which had a fantastic atmosphere. A great choice of food including burgers, Croque Monsieurs and salads. They also did a mean mojito and the service was quick and with a smile with most staff speaking some English. I will say everyone in Hossegor seemed to just have one child or maybe two. We rolled about with 6 between us and so it did seem a little like a walking school sometimes and we did get turned away from one restaurant who I think were scared of a child invasion! After finding this little gem, who were happy to accomodate us, we ate here twice.

hossegor cafe

Take or hire some bikes for getting around.


Or enjoy the people watching whilst eating gelato (that’s ice cream to you and me!)


For more details check out inhossegor. The independent guide to Hossegor, France.