It’s been a minute

It’s been a minute since I’ve written anything on this little ol’ blog of mine. Here’s a little catch up of what’s happened in the last month.

Christmas
We had our Christmas Eve party for the kids and they loved it. With all the work that goes in to making this special for the kids, seeing their joy and wonder makes every late night worth it. The best for them was making the reindeer food and the boys were super excited to sprinkle their food in the yard that night. Other than that, the kids were blessed with some amazing gifts and we had a chilled, relaxed day with my dad and sister.

Looking up at the night sky to find Santa and the reindeer
The Reindeer Food Bar

School Year
The school year started off really well. No tears from anyone! That’s a big win for us. Matthew started Grade 2 this year and Ethan and Harper are back at the creche. Ethan is in Pre Grade R this year and they’re prepping him for Grade R. I met with Matthew’s teacher last night and I am very happy he is in her class. She seems passionate about her students and wanting the parents to work with her. I didn’t get this from his Grade 1 teacher. Here’s to a better school year than last year.

First day of school and Ethan has this new thing when I want to take a photo of them together

Ethan’s hand
For all those asking, Ethan’s hand has healed so nicely. He has a small little scar near his thumb but that is the extent of the damage at the moment. And I am hopeful that the scar will disappear soon too. I am very grateful for his medical team and the care they took of his injury. Things could’ve been so much worse, so I’m grateful that he’s healed as well as he has.

Remember this?
This is his hand now

Other news
In other news, we’ve been searching for our forever home for almost 3 years. On New Year’s day, we got the call to say that our offer was accepted!! I’m so excited, scared, anxious, and nervous about the next few months to finalise things and move our stuff. We’ve been on the look for so long, that it never seemed like it would be a reality. Now that it is, I don’t know where to start.

The year started amazingly for us and I choose to believe that it will only get better. That everything we put our minds to this year will result in a positive end. Last year was a hard one for us but we won’t be dwelling on the how’s and the why’s. Instead, we’ll be looking forward and staying positive.

Tomorrow is the third anniversary of my mom’s death. I’ve been feeling anxious and irritable the last while and I’m not sure if it’s because of the looming anniversary or something else. This time of the year is hard for us and I’m still not sure how to get through it. I need to put on a brave, smiley face for everyone but I really miss my mom.

It’s Matthew’s 8th birthday on Monday. 8!!?!?! I need to spend the weekend baking something special for him. He wants to go to Rush for his birthday, so that’s the plan for next weekend. I can’t believe I’m gonna be a mom for 8 years on Monday.

I’ve been struggling to come here and write. I have so much on my mind but it seems like the words don’t want to make it from my brain to my fingers. I think I’m worried about putting out content that you want to read. I’m worried that writing about my kids aren’t enough. We don’t live exciting lives or go to amazing places and writing about our normal weekends seems so… boring. So tell me, what would you like to see more from The Muller Kids?

When cries turns to screams – a parent’s nightmare

Dislcaimer – post contains images that may offend sensitive viewers. The images are of a burn injury. 

Have you ever experienced such terror that you couldn’t move for a few seconds? Terror at hearing your child scream in pain and not know what to do? That was me a few weeks ago when Ethan had a terrible accident.

We were away for the weekend. It was beautiful, the weather was perfect and the kids were well-behaved (mostly) and having the time of their lives. We were on the bank of the Breede River, glamping in the most perfect spot of Rivierzicht close to Robertson. Harper couldn’t contain her excitement of all the grass she was able to walk barefoot on and all the sand she could eat. We even took a few dips on the river. Heaven.

Just before she started eating the sand
Walking on the green, green grass
Contemplating life 🙂
Silly bums

On our last day there, we had made a fire in the pit to heat up our breakfast as there was no microwave for that purpose. Hours later, this gorgeous little barge came down the river. The barge offers trips down the river from a nearby campsite. There was so much excitement about this watercraft, especially from Ethan. It was his first time being this close to something so cool. He was jumping up and down in wonder and spotted a little dog on the barge. As the barge was casually drifting down the river, Ethan was following it, exclaiming at us to look, look, look! I was in the tent, packing up the last of our goodies as we were getting ready to leave.

Our accommodation
The barge on the river
The fire pit – taken right before the incident

My friend had come around to chat about something and we were standing on the deck, looking at the river but not really taking note of our surroundings as we were deep in conversation. And then, disaster! I hear Ethan start crying and another friend of mine run to pick him up. At this point, his crying changed to screams and I was just standing there watching as everything unfolded. Thinking he just fell and scraped his knee, not really seeing the panic in my friend’s face, I took my time to make my way down to them.

My eldest
My middle
My baby

At this time, they had him under the tap that was close by and I only then realised the seriousness of the situation. You see, Ethan was following the barge on the river and not realised where he was walking as he was looking at the dog and laughing when he fell into the fire pit. Even though we had made fire hours before, the coals were still hot. I rushed to him and just held him, trying to calm him while my sister applied Burnshield to his hand.

The Burnshield on his hand being replaced at the Wound Clinic
First look at his injury

Sad little one after his first dressing change

Mark had gone to the ablution block during this time and when he returned and heard what happened, he immediately grabbed Ethan and got him into the car. I barely had time to grab my purse and get in the car before he was racing to the hospital. That was the longest 25 minute drive of my life. Ethan alternated from screaming, to crying, to whimpering in pain this whole time. And there was absolutely nothing I could do beside murmur a bunch of nonsensical words of comfort into his ear.

At the hospital, they immediately attended to him. When they realised that we had used Burnshield on his injury, they seemed to relax a bit and complimented us on having it at hand and using it. Ethan had a second degree burn on his right hand, loads of blisters and not much more. Considering how much more severe it could have been, we are so lucky that it wasn’t worse.

He has had to attend a Wound Clinic a couple times a week and eventually ended up having surgery on his hand to remove the dead, burned skin. I thank the plastic surgeon for his knowledge and care and for how gently he treated Ethan. Every time we walked into the clinic, Ethan screamed knowing that they had to remove the bandage to assess his wound.

Surgery day
First look after surgery

Without the surgery, I honestly think his healing would’ve taken longer than it has. His hand is looking so great now and he has healed so well. This was such a freak accident and nothing anyone could’ve done would’ve prevented it from happening.

Almost healed up

The lesson we take from this is that accidents happen, suddenly and without any warning. Always have a fully stocked first aid kit with you wherever you go. Especially ensure that it’s stocked with Burnshield.

Burnshield – definitely a must have in the first aid kit

 

A letter to new moms

As mentioned in a previous post, my cousin is due with her first baby in February and we are all so excited for them. Baby Dove suggested I write a letter to new moms about my experience as a mom of 3 and any advise I can part with.

Firstly, congratulations Mommy (and Daddy), your life is about to change drastically. Some days will be so hard, you’ll want to take that baby back to the hospital. Other days are so beautiful, you can’t believe you created such a piece of perfection. And in between those days, will be days filled with throw up, dirty diapers, leaky boobs, and milk in your hair.

Without further ado, my few pieces of advice…

Sleep when baby sleeps
This is not always possible. When Aunty Pat says to you “oh dearie, you need to sleep when baby sleeps, maybe you won’t look so tired” just eat her (you’re gonna need the sustenance). Jokes aside, when baby sleeps, it’s either in your arms, on your chest or touching some part of you and any movement on your side will wake baby. If baby is sleeping in his/her crib, do what you need to do. Take a quick shower, eat something, wash the dishes, maybe have a cup of warm tea or go stand outside for 5 minutes to get some fresh air. If you need it and baby allows for it, then take that nap and enjoy it!

Ask for help (or accept it when it’s offered)
Your house isn’t up to it’s normal standards, your hair is a mess and you have dark circles under  your eyes, which means you don’t want to see anyone. But when your friend pops around and says you should go take a long shower, she’ll watch the baby, take her up on the offer. Sometimes, we just need a few minutes alone to recharge. If your mom in law says she’s going to come around, let her. She’ll probably end up cleaning your house and making dinner. Score! Lol but seriously, accept the help offered. And if it’s not offered, don’t be afraid to ask friends and family to help out. I can promise you, they will gladly drop what they’re doing to get in some baby cuddles.

You cannot spoil your baby
I’m sure you’ve heard of this before. If you hold baby or pick them up every time they cry, you’re going to spoil them. Not true. A baby is going to cry for a reason. Whether it’s because it’s hungry, tired, overstimulated, or just needs some cuddles. Go ahead Mommy, you’re not going to spoil your baby, pick him/her up and get all those cuddles in. Your baby needs all the care and attention you can give.  And trust me, when they’re 7 years old and all grown up, they won’t even come sit next to you on the sofa for fear you will cuddle them.

#TrustYourWay
Listen to your heart (or your gut). You know your baby better than anyone else, so if you feel like something is off, go check on or have your baby checked out at the doctor. If someone’s suggests something that you don’t feel good about, don’t do it. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t ignore that feeling. You need to trust your feelings and do what YOU feel is right for you and your baby.

You aren’t a bad mom
I saw a quote recently that said “You aren’t a bad mom. You are a good mom having a bad day.” We all have bad days. Ones where the kids are glued to the tv watching cartoons the whole day. Or we just could not get to make dinner because we were up all night with baby and would rather eat our own hand than attempt to make something edible. You’re just having a bad day and tomorrow will be better. And if it’s not, just eat all the things and know that it’s just another bad day. (If the bad days are piling up and you feel like you just can’t seem to have a good day, perhaps you should have a talk with your doctor as PND is very common (and VERY normal) for most moms).

Love your body
You just birthed a baby! You’re amazing and your body did something incredible. You carried and grew another human being and your body is changed now. You will feel flabby and yucky and won’t want to look in the mirror for fear of seeing all the stretchmarks. Be patient with yourself and give yourself a break.No one will judge you for wearing the maternity clothes after birth, even if it has been more than a year ago. Look in the mirror and remind yourself of what you did, what you grew, what an amazing feat your body accomplished in bringing your baby into this world. Be kind to yourself.

Oh and just in case you didn’t know, point the penis down to prevent leaky nappies. I learned this the hard way.

This post was written in collaboration with Baby Dove.

Baby shower gift guide

My cousin is pregnant with her first baby and I was asked to help plan her baby shower. If you’ve ever been invited to a baby shower, I’m sure you’ve wracked your brain to think of a meaningful and useful gift for the mom to be. Well, I’m here to save you. I’ve put together a great gift guide for you.

My top 5 picks

  • NoseFrida
    Number one on my list is the NoseFrida. I don’t why it took me so long to buy this little gadget but it’s been a lifesaver with Harper. Babies can’t blow their noses but get blocked up pretty quick. The NoseFrida is a nifty nasal aspirator where you suction baby’s nose safely and effectively. It sounds gross but there are filters that prevent the transfer of mucus and germs.

  • Baby Bullet (from Nutribullet)
    I handmade all the kids first foods using a stick blender. But I had my eye on the Baby Bullet from the second I saw it. Unfortunately, it was just a bit out of my price range so I had to make do with our stick blender. I can promise you, the mommy-to-be will love you forever if you get her this.

  • Snuza Baby Movement Monitor
    First time moms are going to stress about every little thing. Trust me. Help ease the new mom’s anxiety with this amazing little gadget. This guy clips onto baby’s nappy and monitors normal movement (like breathing). If no movement is detected after 20 seconds, the alarm will sound and mom will be alerted. It’s portable so it can come along when mom goes out for a quick break.

  • Toiletries
    Find out if the mom has any specific brands in mind that she would like to use on her newborn and get her 1 or 2 of all the products in the range. You can never have too much toiletries like wipes, body wash, lotions, etc. My personal favourite is the Baby Dove range as it’s soft on baby’s skin, is hypoallergenic, and smells amazing. They have a sensitive range as well which helps to minimise the risk of skin allergies.
  • Gift of time/help
    If all else fails, and the above isn’t something you’d like to gift the mom-to-be, perhaps a gift voucher would be best. Or print vouchers to help mom out at home. Maybe ones that say you’ll watch baby for 10 minutes while mom takes a shower, or a voucher for homemade meals, or even one that she can redeem to sleep for an hour.

Did this help you? Do you have any other must have items to add? Let me know in the comments section below.

What to pack for a day trip to the beach

Summer is finally making her debut here in Cape Town. I don’t know about you but I am thoroughly over winter. I don’t like getting cold and the warmer weather brings with it a sense of freedom in a way. The freedom to stay out late because it’s still light out. The freedom to go on a drive because the weather is amazing and it’s not pouring with rain. The freedom to go to the beach and let the kids run free.

Speaking of the beach, Mark is an avid fisher (even though he mostly just feeds the fish lol I’m joking babe) and we mostly accompany him on his adventures. The kids could spend most of the day splashing in the waves, soaking up the sun and watching dad cast his line over into the ocean. Matthew especially loves to join his dad. We bought him his own little fishing rod and he enjoys casting that line. Only problem is, he doesn’t like to put his own bait on (yuck!) and the call of the waves is too much for him to stand there for more than 10 minutes before throwing his rod down and joining Ethan in splashing in the water.

We’ve been to many beaches here in the Western Cape over the years and I’ve picked up some tips on what to pack to make it an easy and comfortable trip for the whole family.

What to pack
Sun cover
We have a little pop up tent that we take everywhere with us. It shades us from the sun and provides a bit of cover should the wind pick up. We also have a 2 man tent that we used when Harper was smaller. This is awesome because baby is completely sheltered and you have loads of space to put your belongings. You could always use a beach umbrella but those things tend to fly away with just a little bit of a breeze.

Sunblock
Babies and children’s skin are super sensitive. Find a great brand that offers a 50+ SPF factor. There’s nothing worse than dealing with a sunburned toddler.

Toiletries
Public restrooms are the pits. Be sure to take a toilet roll with you because kids need to poop at the most inopportune time. We also pack in our Baby Dove wet wipes to not only wipe the seat but to wipe their hands after using the loo. We all know public toilets get vandalised from time to time and there’s often no water available. The Baby Dove wet wipes are great because they’re just wet enough to deal with those grubby hands and they’re wonderfully soft to deal with wiping a sensitive toddler’s bum. Oh and I pack in a tube of Baby Dove nappy cream too. Have you ever been in the sun for too long and your lips become chapped and dry? Did you know you could use a bum cream on your lips to help heal it?

Lots of snacks and drinks
I think the fresh air does something to my kids’ appetites because this seems the only time they’re always hungry. We always pack picnic-style foods and lots of snacks and drinks.

Beach towels and spare clothing
I don’t know about you but my kids love changing their clothes. They’ll suddenly start feeling cold and want to get dressed. Then, 10 minutes later you’ll find them strolling mid thigh in the water in those clothes. So I always pack extras.

And a bonus tip – I’m sure we’ve seen that parenting hack where you use baby powder to rub sand off your kids’ legs and feet. Spoiler – it really does work. Sand is a bitch to get out of the mats in the car, so I’d rather spend a few minutes to shake some baby powder on their legs and feet and use a towel to rub off. The sand literally just jumps off their skin

These are items I definitely cannot do without at the beach. Do you have any other tips and tricks to add? Let me know in the comments.

 

Making eye contact

When you’re talking to someone, do you always make eye contact? Or do you find that you can’t look them in the eye for too long and quickly divert your eyes? I fall into the latter category and I finally think I know why.

It started a year or two ago when someone mentioned to me that I don’t always make eye contact when they’re talking to me. I didn’t even realise I was doing it until it was brought up. I then started trying to make a conscious effort to look someone in the eye when we were talking. It was working but I realized that I was losing what little self confidence I had in the process. You see, I am an extremely shy person. And it only came to me recently, that I have some social anxiety too.

What is social anxiety?
“Social anxiety is the fear of social situations that involve interaction with other people. You could say social anxiety is the fear and anxiety of being negatively judged and evaluated by other people. It is a pervasive disorder and causes anxiety and fear in most all areas of a person’s life.”
Source

Eyes are the window to the soul. So, people with social anxiety will have a difficult time maintaining eye contact. It has nothing to do with you but just their social anxiety kicking in.

I realized that while I was focusing on maintaining eye contact, I was losing track of what I wanted to say, thus having to think harder about what was coming out of my mouth. I couldn’t maintain eye contact and still say what I wanted to say without stumbling over my words. This has led to me being more self-conscious and having an even lower self-esteem.

I found the following article, that talks about how to overcome eye contact anxiety. I’m going to be trying some of the fixes and hope I make a little of progress.

I don’t make eye contact because of my social anxiety, low self-esteem and shyness.
Not because I LIKE you and get nervous around you.
Not because I’m not interested in what you have to say.
Not because you’re not visually appealing.
Not because I’m hiding something.
Not always because I’m having a bad day.

Am I the only one that can’t always make eye contact?

Catching Up

Baby shark doo doo doo doo doo do,
Baby shark doo doo doo doo doo do….. Anyone else over this song? And now they’re making all these different variations of the same song. OMG people, can we just not? I’ve heard of baby car and baby monkey so far.

Anyway that’s not the point of this post. Actually I don’t think this post has a point. I just missed writing and figured I’d just put pen to paper so to speak.

There’s no news in the Muller world. Nothing new has happened and there’s no big crisis. So this will be a mini catch up I suppose.

We eventually got our car back! 3 months after it went in for repairs. It’s crazy how long it took the panel beaters to find original parts for the car. The best part is that the bumper is starting to come loose now. FML! Can nothing go right in our lives right now?!?!

I am sucking so bad at posting to social media at the moment. I STILL don’t have a good camera phone so I blame it on that. But in reality, my kids are boring and really don’t do anything hilarious or sing and dance for me so that I can show you all. Hopefully, we can remedy this soon.

Harper took a few running steps yesterday evening. On her own! And yes, I know, it didn’t happen if it’s not on SM but you just have to believe me when I tell you this. Also, I have a few weeks left of party planning and I have cut outs coming out of my ears already. I can’t find the supplies I’m looking for and I think I may have bitten off more than I chew with this one.

Some kid tried to fight with Matthew over the weekend. He’s 9 years old and was fighting over a marble or something. We don’t tolerate violence in any form so it’s been a bit hard figuring out how to deal with this, knowing Matthew didn’t start it or fight back.

Oh and I started knitting. Can you believe that? I last knitted when I was in standard 2, which was more than 25 years ago. Starting on something simple, and hoping I can finish it. It would be such an accomplishment and motivation to continue.

I signed up for the Discovery Tough Mudder tomorrow!?!?!?! Well, actually, I won tickets through a radio Station but I’m super amped! I’m also scared and nervous but looking forward to the adventure. Wish me luck and pray that I make it through the course.

I wanted to host a birthday giveaway ahead of Harper’s birthday. But not sure what to offer you guys. So, what would you like to win?

This one’s for the dads – trust your way

*written in collaboration with Baby Dove

So your wife/partner just peed on a stick and you realise that your life is about to change in ways you would never think possible. You guys reach the 12 week mark and think now is the time to tell the world (if you could contain your excitement before telling everyone).

Advice
Suddenly, everyone has some type of advice for your wife/partner. Don’t eat this, don’t drink that, use this for the aches, use that to sleep better. She’s frustrated and emotional, advice overload, and you have no idea how to make things better for her. But you chop on and you get to a point that you don’t say or do the wrong thing for a few hours and you can make your wife/partner relatively comfortable.

Matthew

Baby’s here!
Then your beautiful bouncing baby arrives. You’re enthralled, overwhelmed, ecstatic, nervous and maybe even a little scared. You take baby out for the first time, you need diapers and your wife/partner needs some fresh air, to get out of the house for a bit. You’re standing in the queue, baby is in the pram covered up (or in the baby carrier) and the aunty standing behind you in the queue starts chatting to you. “ooh I’m sure that cry means she’s hungry”, “have you tried using this product for his skin”, “she seems jaundiced, have you taken her for a checkup”, and it just goes on and on and you want to tell the lady you just shut her trap and keep her comments to herself. But you’re nice and hate confrontation so you keep quiet, nod your head and say thank you, you’ll try it when you get home.

Ethan

Time passes but you still doubt yourself
Your baby is now a few months old and you’ve heard all the advice you can handle. You and your wife/partner are both overwhelmed with all the information you’ve been reading up on or been given by friends and family (and the odd aunty in the queue). You start to doubt yourself because one person said you should try the cry it out method, another person said you must chuck the diapers and start potty training from when your baby is 6 months old, but you haven’t even figured out yet how to put the grower on with getting his arms stuck.

Harper

TRUST
I’ve been down this road 3 times now and I too, have heard it all. So now, I’m going to give you some advice. Only you and your wife/partner know your baby. You can read every single parenting book out there but each child is unique. Your baby is unique. You’ve been around this little person for his entire life, held her when she cried at 3am because she woke up and wouldn’t go back to sleep, bathed his little body and used the special bum cream when she got a bad nappy rash. You know when he’s hungry, or crying because she needs a diaper change. You know how warm she likes her formula bottle or how he likes to sleep.

Don’t let anyone’s advice and well-meaning comments cause you to doubt yourself. Thank the person, smile and say you will take their advice into consideration. At the end of the day, you can listen to everything everyone tells you. It’s up to you to take that advice and then use what you think might work for you and your baby.

Mark and the boys

TRUST that you know what’s best for YOUR baby. TRUST that you’re strong enough to do what is right for YOUR baby. TRUST that you have the patience and the knowledge to raise your baby the best way you know how. TRUST that you can give your wife/partner the support and trust that she needs.

Just love your baby. And Trust Your Way!

 

Ethan at 4 years old

I hardly ever do those birthday posts for any of my kids. I do a little shoutout on Instagram and Facebook but that’s about it. Does that make me a bad mom/blogger? Does it mean I love my kids any less? No, it doesn’t. It just means that instead of going all googly eyed and talking about all my hopes and dreams for my kid, I get to tell you like it is. So what can I say about Ethan….

Fighting
Even though he and Matthew have loving moments, where they’ll hug each other and be best buds, those moments are fleeting. They fight like crazy. And it’s normally Ethan that starts it. Granted there are times when Matthew teases him and he retaliates but mostly, it’s him. He wants something Matthew has, can’t get it, then starts scream crying. Only to stop mid scream when Matthew gives it to him. He’ll hit Matthew if he can’t get his way and has a bit of a temper.

Bathtime
For someone who loves to “swim” in the bath, he sure does hate having his hair washed. I thought we had gotten over this for the most part but just this weekend, Mark washed his hair and he screamed through the entire process. You would swear Mark was physically attacking him the way he went on. I’m sure my neighbours worry about what we do with our kids.

That said, we use the Baby Dove shampoo on him. Not only is it gentle on his eczema prone skin, but it smells amazing and makes his hair soft and shiny. I’ve had to trust that using this shampoo (and their bath wash) wouldn’t mess with his eczema and I think we’ve been lucky that he took to it so well.

 

Mealtimes
Mealtimes is another struggle. Ethan will eat most things. He’s also not shy to taste new foods (unlike Matthew). But unless it’s one of his favourite meals, you can forget about him finishing his food. He’ll mostly just eat the meat/chicken and leave the rice. He’s very fond of my mince pasta and most stew type dishes. He can devour sweets and biscuits in the time it takes me to finish a cup of coffee but food? I guess he must be in the mood or something lol

Other
Otherwise, he’s a neat kid who I don’t mind being around most of the time. He is loving and caring, loves to play by himself and watch Blaze and the Monster Machines, Paw Patrol, and Thomas and Friends. He loves construction vehicles, especially excavators (which he calls “esca-bator“). He sometimes thinks he’s Captain America and gets upset when we tell him he’s not. He loves holding Harper and making her squirm because he’s holding on too tight. He loves to help me when I’m baking, wanting to hold the mixer and throw the ingredients in. He’s a very independent 4 year old with abundant energy and the most contagious laugh. He loves the beach and throwing sand in his hair. He loves to crawl into our bed at 4am and kick me in the back. He loves to use his dad as a jungle gym and thinks he’s some famous gymnast. He loves great sneakers, looking smart and won’t wear anything if he’s not feeling it (probably gets it from his dad lol). He loves nature and being outdoors, he will crawl after a wriggly worm, run after a butterfly and spend hours playing with his construction vehicles in the sand. He can be gentle, boisterous, energetic, stubborn, independent, feisty, and a handful. We love him and wouldn’t have it any other way.

See, there I went all soft and googly eyed.

Thomas & Friends: Big World! Big Adventures! The Movie

I introduced Ethan to Thomas and Friends a few months ago and my child is in love with that little tank engine. When I found out that there is a new movie being released in October, I knew that I had to ensure that I take Ethan to see it.

The movie is called Thomas & Friends: Big World! Big Adventures! The Movie and is launching in Ster Kinekor theatres on 5 October 2018. The new movie features new friends along the way including first Kenyan tank engine Nia, guest-voiced by Nairobi born voice-over artist, Yvonne Grundy and racing car Ace, guest-voiced by Australian singer Peter Andre. Bobby van Jaarsveld, is a South African Afrikaans-language pop singer-songwriter and actor will sing the local version of the theme song.

Yvonne Grundy – voice of Nia
Peter Andre – voice of Ace
Bobby van Jaarsveld

The Big World Adventures theme song shares the message that we should be open to exploration; to traversing the globe, seeking out adventures, engaging with new and different people, and making new friends along the way.

This is the thirteenth feature-length film to be produced by the word-famous franchise and the first to hit screens following a major refresh to its content including: a new theme tune and narrator, new characters and locations and a revolutionized Steam Team with a greater representation of girl engines. The movie features a fun-packed plot full of wonder and curiosity, plus tons of animals and several musical songs that will captivate the imagination of young Thomas fans and parents alike. This is the biggest and best Thomas movie to date and one not to be missed!

Thomas & Friends: Big World! Big Adventures! The Movie sees Thomas undertake his most epic journey ever as he leaves Sodor to fulfill his dream of seeing the world! The action-packed adventure begins when a mischievous little racing car called Ace comes to Sodor and inspires Thomas to embark on an ambitious trip-without the Fat Controller’s/Sir Topham Hatt’s permission!

This heroic quest takes Thomas across deserts, through jungles and over dangerous mountains as he travels across five continents seeing sights he has never seen before! On his journey to discover new places and cultures, Thomas visits Africa and makes friends with an adventurous, inspiring and fun tank engine from Kenya called Nia. But with so much for Thomas to learn about the world, will Nia be successful in teaching him a lesson about the true meaning of friendship?

“Thomas & Friends™: Big World! Big Adventures!” is introducing the first tank engine from Africa – Nia, an adventurous and fun character who teaches Thomas a lesson about the meaning of friendship.

Thomas the Tank Engine™ was created over 70 years ago and that story quickly grew through content to become the award-winning global brand franchise it is today, with multiple touch-points and formats, including apps; toy consumer products; publishing; live attractions and much more with over 1 engine sold per second. Watched in over 160 territories, in over 50 languages with over 1.16 billion lifetime views on YouTube, Thomas & Friends offers more than 80 hours of original content produced from 500 episodes and 12 specials.