Monthly Archives: March 2016

The little things that make you smile…


 I don’t think anyone would disagree that feeling happy is a bloody brilliant feeling. We often look for the huge things to get us there though don’t we? Perfect house, dream job, falling in love… Sometimes though I find the little things do just as well. Do you know what I mean?? When a teeny tiny thing just makes you smile. These are my favourite small things that make me happy.

The perfect cup of tea
When you take that first sip (not straight away silly you’ll burn your mouth, that won’t make you smile) The milk content is perfect, the strength is magnificent right to the very last mouthful that cuppa is a masterpiece. If this is the first cup of the morning you, my friend, are winning at life. Just don’t try to replicate that perfect cup. It never ever works twice in a row.

Thoughtful texts and emails
When someone tells you there’s a TV programme /show/movie that they think you might like. That always brightens my day. It’s a nice feeling to be thought of, and to know someone took the time out of their day to let you know that they know you well. Makes me feel all fuzzy and loved.

The Humber Bridge
As anyone who doesn’t live ‘at home’ in Hull anymore will know, there’s a certain part of the journey where you catch your first glimpse of the bridge. It. Feels. Amazing.
I always get giddy when I see it as it means you’re almost home. The ‘Welcome to Hull’ sign at the train station is similar for me, the second my foot is on the Hull station platform I smile.

Well mannered children
Specifically mine.
When we go out for dinner or are just amongst the general public I love when they’re beautifully mannered to strangers. It makes me think ‘ah I’m raising these lovely individuals’. Said general public will never know that a couple hours later these lovely polite children will be tearing chunks out of each other over some computer game, but ignorance is bliss so they say.

An uninterrupted bath
This one I can rarely pull off if the children are actually home. The fighting I spoke about above will inevitably commence the second I dip my toe in the bath water.
When they’re not home though, a bubble bath, candles, hair mask ,trashy magazines and a glass of wine is the ultimate treat. There’s even time to use your posh body butter when you get out because no one is battering the door in in desperate need for a wee and no they can’t wait as I’ve been in the bath agggeeeessss (approx 7 mins)

A charity shop bargain
Books, board games, shoes, bags… Everyone loves a bargain don’t they?! Finding a book in the charity shop I used to have as a kid is an amazing feeling. I once picked up almost every Judy Blume book for eldest girl for about £3 (I did buy Forever, but I didn’t give her THAT one!) Finding a bargain, encouraging recycling AND helping charity. That’s borderline smug happy that is!!

Of course there’s many more but I won’t bore you with them. I’ll just say this. A tube of wine gums with more than one black in it can raise the spirits even on a dodgy Monday!

Sometimes it really is the little things!!


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Reasons everyone should have a ‘date night’…on their own!

Firstly I hate the term date night , it’s up there with ‘me time’ for phrases that make me want to pull my hair out! You know what I mean though don’t you? Getting all dressed up with somewhere to go?

Well the best night out I’ve had in ages was last year.I got all dressed up , made a bit of an effort. I went into Manchester to an Italian for dinner ,got the tram up to media city and had a glass of wine looking out onto the water then went to see Wicked which was one of my favourite stage shows I’ve ever seen.

All on my own.

I know my love of going out on my own isn’t to everyone’s tastes. Frankly , many people think me a bit nuts. That’s ok. I even went on holiday alone last year , maybe that’s a step too far for most people.I do think though that everyone should have a tiny taste of it . It’s good for the soul, I’m sure of it. Here’s why :

You don’t have to compromise

You fancy Chinese , have it .There’s no added extra person who you have to take account of. As a mum there is ALWAYS someone elses tastes and views and likes that I have to take into account when I do anything. There’s a certain freedom in being able to do whatever the hell you like , feels a bit naughty too. I fancy going to that restaurant everyone else hates…who’ll stop me?! That kind of thing.

It gives you chance to reconnect with your own brain

I know the term ‘reconnect’ is a bit tossy , sorry. What I actually mean is we’re all busy , all the time, the kids need at least a bit of your attention constantly. Even when they’re in bed asleep ,part of my mind is always on the listen out should anybody need me. So to get out on your own with no mum chores to do , no one needing your attention , no need to even have a conversation with anyone else feels nice. Your mind is all your own. I always do my best thinking at these times ( not that my thinking is a thing of genius but just to stop and slow down feels good)

You can remind yourself of what YOU like

In our house we have spaghetti bolognaise every week. It’s the kids favourite so we have it. When I go to an Italian restaurant though I’m still tempted to order it because I think “ooo I love bolognaise”…but I don’t. The kids love it so we have it . I really aren’t a big fan. My children have, over the years, brain washed me. I suppose what I’m trying to say is that maybe you go to the cinema to see rom coms because the people you go with like them and you’re actually into horror …go see your movies (actually horrors on your own might be scary-probably don’t do that)

People are nice

Obviously other people don’t really factor into the going out alone thing , but humans are unavoidable in the main so stay with me. You find when out alone you end up chatting with people you otherwise wouldn’t. On my night to see Wicked just before the show started the two women sat by me were making small talk and by the interval I was drinking wine with them in the bar. They were really interesting women and as I love hearing peoples stories it added a special something to the night! Then of course if you’re dining alone the waiter will often upgrade your wine to a large at no extra charge. The sympathy wine. Tastes all the better for it. Same goes for the pity flirt…all adds to the nights fun!

You can fully immerse yourself in what you are doing

This might just be me but I have a tendency to daydream never fully giving my attention to one thing fully. I think it’s a practised mum skill for when you have to have three different conversations at once. No matter what it is I’m doing I’m usually doing something else at the same time, whether that’s missing a vital moment in Eastenders because I was looking at Twitter on my phone or making a mental To Do list whilst cooking dinner. If I am out at the cinema or theatre with another person it extends to that. Yes I’m watching the movie or the show but part of me is wondering if they’re ok, are they enjoying it ?Are they gong to want a snack at the interval? When it’s just me and the big stage in front of me I am absolutely engrossed and enthralled. I really did spend a couple of hours in Oz on the night of Wicked.

So there we go. Don’t get me wrong there is no better feeling than sharing a magical night with someone special. I’d never say otherwise. There is though a certain selfish magic in spending time on your own. I obviously go to the crazy end of the scale , I’d happily holiday on my own. There’s no need to go that far. Maybe a coffee you’ve not had to make and mug you don’t have to wash with a trashy mag would do the trick?

“Reflections

 


Mission Mindfulness

 

Dating after toxic relationships

I like being single , I like not having to worry about another adult. Relationships I have been in have always been at best disfunctional and at worst abusive and I just don’t have it in me to do that again. I can’t imagine ever being in a serious relationship , I certainly don’t think I could live with anyone again.

Now and again though I do think it’d be nice to have someone special. An actual grown up to spend time with , a bit of affection perhaps even a bit of romance (I know high maintenance eh?!)

The thing is after you’ve been in a toxic relationships, dating is a minefield. There’s so much scope for old anxieties to resurface , to fall back into negative thought patterns. I can only tell my story but there really are a lot of hurdles to overcome.

One of my main problems when I’ve given dating a shot is that it highlights how skewed my view of myself is and how damage done in toxic relationships is still apparent. Compliments are difficult for example. If someone tells me I look nice or I’m funny or anything positive at all I dismiss it instantly. They’re just being polite I think or even worse they’re thinking I look terrible and are having to lie. That’s a really warped thought pattern , I know that. The thing is being told you’re fat and ugly and disgusting everyday for years on end is going to have an impact. I’ve 4 children and the body to prove it . I’m guarded. Trusting when someone tells you you’re fantastic is a risk , you believed someone when they told you that before and look how that turned out?

My next boyfriend is going to have to be the world’s most patient man.

Then there’s *whispers* sex ssshhh. Another mental minefield. Another thing associated with trauma. Along with the body worries there’s also the fact I’ve not done it in AGES!! What if I am rubbish at it ?! I worry I’d zone out mid event as was the way I got through it back then. That’d be fun eh??

The next guy is going to need to be so patient he would make Mother Theresa look a bit cranky!!

Then there’s the big one. Trust.
It’s not what you think either , it’s not that I don’t trust men or that I think they’ll all treat me terribly. I really don’t believe that to be true . I don’t trust my own judgement though.

I’ve always said my perfect boyfriend would be someone who was happy to just see me once a month for dinner and romance and the bedroom stuff , with more time in the school holidays when the kids were away! Good plan eh?

I know this is an unrealistic scenario. Men I’ve known have wanted to move along quite quickly and it put me off straight away.I’m certainly not ready to jump into anything with both feet. I don’t know if I ever will be.

So you see dating is a tricky game to play for me . I like meeting new people , I enjoy the company of interesting men and I hope one day I will have my Mr Perfect in my life ….it’s just the actual dating bit I could do without!!

It turns out though, the only way to get over all the hang ups is to actually get out there and do it! Practice makes almost perfect. Bad dates are as helpful as lovely ones.
The bad ones help you realise that your self esteem has grown to a point that deciding a person is just not right for you is OK.

The good ones? Well if like me you’re naturally suspicious of men as a species after bad experiences, there’s hopefully going to be someone who comes along and presses the reset button. Who has you decide actually this is the benchmark for the future.When someone is respectful and kind and thoughtful you kind of make an internal deal with yourself that this is the only way you’ll stand to be treated in future. It doesn’t have to be love of your life stuff (one step at a bloody time) but just enough to make you set the bar high.

We’ve been through the mill and not treated well enough, but that really doesn’t have to be our lot.

Setting high standards isn’t a thing of arrogance it’s self preservertion and when you do meet someone that gives you all the tummy flutters and smiling at your phone like a loon at cute texts (spoiler alert – so have !!) well it makes waiting for the right one and being that bit picky and cautious totally worth the wait

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Years later…

WordPress alerted me to the fact that it had been four years since I started writing this blog.

In turn many ,many more years since I left the abusive relationship.Made me reflect.

Some days I have down days , on the dark ones I question if leaving home and coming here , being away from my sister and friends was really worth it. I miss my sister so much and I hate not being a present part in my niece and nephews lives as I once was.

Of course it bloody was worth it though.

On those dark days however . On the days I feel every bit as fat and ugly and stupid as he told me I was. On the days I feel so alone here and being a single mum overwhelms almost completely. When I’m ill but have to do the school run because there’s no one else .When the kids are at their bickery best and I just want to cry because I feel like the worst mum ever. On those days I have to remember why it was all worth it.

Escaping, running away was all worth it. I just have to think of the woman that turned up here and who she was when she arrived in a new city with not a clue what to do next.
When I left. That day , that month , that year even I was a mess. I was as stripped bare as a person could be.

I was numb.

I couldn’t think.

I certainly couldn’t feel.

I spent so long just waiting for someone to tell me what to do next.

I’d not been allowed to make my own decisions for so long I didn’t even know my own mind anymore. I don’t think I even had my own mind.

I was away from him , physically anyway. Mentally my mind still belonged to him. Programmed like some kind of robot. In the months after I left, he still had the power. You know when you see hypnotists on TV ? They say “sleep” and everyone’s head falls down onto their chests.He could do that to me ,even from a hundred miles away.

Certain phrases he could use to the police , the court , social services to make me do what he wanted.

“I’m worried about her mental health”

“She’s a compulsive liar”

“She’s just not a natural mother”

Even reaching me second hand from my solicitor, an ally , instantly put me in my place. He’d warned me you see for years. That if I left no one would believe me , they’d think I was crazy , they’d take my children. These phrases were his equivalent to that ‘sleep’ command of the hypnotist.
The killer blow came when a social worker repeated these phrases to me after speaking to him. Only she wasn’t parroting him but telling me what she thought. That I was lying , that I was mad that she’d remove my kids if I couldn’t prove I wasn’t.

That was the darkest day of all.

I got through it though. I jumped through hoops. I made my points proved myself and eventually he showed his true colours.

Bit by bit I became stronger.

Fairysteps people kept telling me , baby steps no big leaps. I fairystepped all the way to now.

I’m not that woman now. I’m not triggered into submission by an email from him. I’m in control of my mind. I make my own decisions. I think my own thoughts. I can’t pretend I’m here all cured of anxiety and low self esteem. I’m not.

Oh but it was all worth it. Walking out of the door that day , getting on the train with a thumping heart convinced he’d know my plans and drag me away. Every anxiety attack , every tear , every sob , every scream of frustration.

All worth it

To not be that scared , numb woman anymore. To have happy , content , confident children.
That would be worth anything.
So on those doubtful days , even the truly shitty ones I just have to think of that woman who first came here. Who wouldn’t have thought contentment and peace and calm was possible. I have to realise and remind myself that offered what I have now , she’d have bitten your hand off.

My life’s not perfect , but it’s all mine.

I encourage feminist daughters , but I need my sons to join in

I think I harp on enough about how I want my daughters to strive for the very top , trampling every sexist barrier in their way. I’ve written posts (here if you fancy) about how I’m aware they’re always going to have to shout that bit louder to be heard.

What about my sons though?

Well I want them to join in too.

I know my critics worry I’ll raise ‘soft’ boys. That my banning violent video games in the house means I’m somewhat inhibiting their freedom to use mindless aggression.

That by teaching them not to objectify women and to be respectful is impeding their masculinity.

That by , in the same way as my daughters, encouraging them to write and to bake and to be creative ensures that they’ll never become ‘real men’

Well that’s fine by us.

Gloria Steinhem , a feminist I greatly admire said that

“We’ve begun to raise our daughters more like sons…but few have the courage to raise our sons more like daughters”

You see what I wish for , for my sons, is the same as what I wish for my daughters. The only difference is that by simply being male , the boys already have a head start.

I’m in no way of course that saying every person born with a penis is privileged. You’d only have to walk through any town centre of a cold night and witness the deprivation and homelessness of many, many men.What I am saying though is men already have a big leg up in society. I want my sons to use their privilege well,

I want my sons to stand up against inequality , as I do my daughters.

I want my sons to do all they can to help those worse off than them, as I do my daughters.

I want my sons to view the bigger picture and not think that anything not happening on their doorstep doesn’t concern them ,as I do my daughters

I want my sons , as adults , to call out their male peers if they see sexism and misogyny. I fear my daughters would put themselves in danger if they were to do the same.

That’s where my problem lies.

I want to send good , caring , empathetic adults out into the world who want to make that world a better place.

I don’t think that’s a feminist thing. I just think it’s a human thing.

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Hugs……and how I KNEW The Doctor and I had something in common!!!!!

During the Capaldi-fest which was the Doctor Who finale on Saturday my adoration for The Doctor was finally sealed. I’ve always known we had lots in common (If we really have seen the back of Clara and he’s looking for a single mum in her 30’s with a dodgy Hull accent as his new companion look no further!!) We both have a ‘thing ‘ for Billie Piper , we’re both clinging to the right side of sanity just about and we both have an awesome time machine….oh ok maybe the last one is just on my Christmas wish list!!!

The best thing though is I’ve finally found someone who doesn’t like hugs!!!!

Clara: Why don’t you like hugging Doctor?

Doctor: Never trust a hug , it’s just a way to hide your face

Borderline cheesy yes I know , but it had me cheering !

Hugs and I don’t get along.

Hugs with the children are a whole other kettle of fish, those guys I can cuddle up with for hours on end. It’s nice and it’s relaxing and calming and affectionate and just feels right. Hugging them just fits. The same as my niece and nephews , I miss those kids so much that when I see them I won’t leave them alone!!  “You’ll never be too old for cuddling up with auntie Kelly ” says needy old auntie Kelly.

Grown ups though? adults? The hugging thing makes me cringe!! My  friends I love them , adore them. I tell them all the time how much I think of them after a glass of wine!My sister , my favourite adult in the world the same (thankfully she’s not a cuddler either)Even with these girls though hugging makes me feel awkward. If someone goes in for the Hi hug  I’m hoping it’s going to be brief!!The physical closeness thing doesn’t feel lovely or affectionate ,just awkward.

I’m much better than I used to be with physical affection. I used to hate touching of any kind! I’ve never been a hand-holder with boyfriends. Recently though I have found myself becoming more tactile. I can do sympathetic arm stroking  , I can put an arm round the shoulders in a comforting gesture and it’s finally something that feels natural, where it never did before.

I’m almost sure it’s a defensive thing. Keep people at a distance, I’ve spoken of how my emotional intimacy capacity is pretty dire. Keeping  people at a physical distance,  just keeps everyone aware we’re not going to be doing any of that ‘love stuff'( I’m exceptionally bad at the ‘love stuff’ but I’ll let you in on that whole other level of oddness another time) .Let’s just say Mr Right is going to have to have patience underlined and in bold as a quality on his dating CV.

Maybe it’s because it’s just been so long since I were in a relationship where touching and cuddling and physical affection is a thing, that actually I’m just out of the habit. Maybe when Mr Right and his super comfy , hugely patient hugs come along it’ll work, those hugs will fit too and I can stop worrying that I’m just not capable!! I do worry about it too ,I’m almost 35 and been single for so long I do consider my own behaviour. I think hug-hater may give out the wrong signal! I am a warm person , I’m thoughtful and kind and loving I hope. It’s just those bloody cuddles!!

For now though , I’m with The Doctor .This doesn’t bode particularly well what with him being an alien and all. I’m thinking though if he’s got two hearts and doesn’t like hugging maybe me with just one ,that’s ok for now.

A few suggestions to my children for THEIR new years resolutions….

Hi kids ,

Now you are aware I adore you.  I think that you are the most funny , fabulous, wonderful children in the world. I really do. If you were thinking of making new years resolutions though , I thought I’d give a hint or two. Keep in mind I think you are perfect exactly the way you are but if you insist on joining in the silly ritual let’s make them useful eh? We both know that the keeping your rooms tidy one will last a week so let’s ditch that from the off.

To my fabulous firstborn,

I love the way we can have intelligent conversation. I love the way you’ve an interest in the world around you and the injustice that goes on. I am so proud of the effort you put into your school work and your Duke of Edinburgh….I was just wondering if maybe you could take an equal interest in little jobs round the house. The world literally around you , the injustice of mum having to do EVERYTHING. Let’s do all in our power to challenge such injustice so maybe , as a new years resolution , you and I can come up with a rota for us all for those annoying little jobs.

To youngest boy

You’re so very creative . I love reading your writing. I’ll be amazed if your ambition to become a top notch journalist or award winning novelist don’t come off and because I love you so much I won’t even be jealous!!!Your highly organised box of notebooks and journals impress me greatly. The folders you have which contain the series of picture books you wrote when you were 7 or 8 show such organisation I can’t fail to be impressed. I just thought maybe if you insist on making a resolution you could transfer some of these organisational skills to your school bag? What do you reckon? When I ask every night if you’ve done your homework and packed your bag and you smile your adorable smile and tell me of course.Let’s make it true?????A mere suggestion of course.

To eldest girl,

I am so proud of the girl you are. I love how you stand up for what you believe in. I couldn’t have been have been prouder earlier this month when you called out the ‘She belongs to me’ lyrics in that One Direction song your sister insists on singing all the time. Filled me full of joy!! I love that you challenge ideas and concepts that you believe are wrong.I do really wish I could be a little more like you. I was just wondering  , and of course you are free to reject the idea,how about we resolve not to pick your brothers up on EVERYTHING they do wrong? Novel concept eh? Just think though if you saved up all the picking up on the little things (the neatness of their room , that they took odd socks to grandmas , that they bought sweets on way home from school) how much energy you would have to challenge the big things (them leaving the toilet seat up) I’ll leave that thought with you.

To youngest girl

You know how much I enjoy snuggling up with you on the sofa for one of our movie afternoons. You are the best cuddler I know and have exquisite taste in movie snacks. Our Frozen sing- a- longs are a thing of magnificence , I am sure of it. When they are casting for the stage show , you and I MUST be in the running (I’ll even let you be Elsa). The thing is I think there are so many other really fantastic movies out there that you’d love equally if you just dropped your policy of refusing to watch films you’ve never seen before. What do you think if we maybe once a fortnight  snuggle up and watch a brand new film? Go on give it a go…those chipmunks are really beginning to drive me nuts!!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR kids …Can’t wait to explore a brand new year with you all , and if you’ve any suggestions for resolutions for me feel free to let me know them  Errrmmm…keep them to yourselves!!

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I love that my little girl has a female sporting hero…and that it’s her sister

My eldest daughter is the sporty member of the family. This week alone she has a rugby match and a rounders tournament as well as badminton club! Since she started high school and has seen how many different sports are available to her she seems to have made it her mission to try every one.

They’ve not all stuck , all the sports she’s tried. She hated rhythmic gymnastics and cricket got short shrift too. She seems to have preference for team games , rough ones at that. She’s definitely a contact sport kind of girl. I have nothing but admiration and pride for her dedication to sport. It’s not something her elder brothers ever did , they love sport but are more the spectator type.

Littlest girl is different again. In something that amuses me no end she refuses to watch any kind of football unless it’s ‘girls’ football. We were lucky enough to go to a few women’s matches during the 2012 Olympics , she was only 4 then but it seems to have stuck. She’s enjoying watching the women’s world cup with us which is great..

Other than that though , the little one is very much a dance and rhythmic gym girl. She recently won her very first medal and it is her pride and joy.

We were talking about sport and which women in sport we admire . For Christmas when she was 4 she got the Olympics box set. She watches it still now , it really captured her imagination, and there are so many women she picks out as her favourites . Then she turned to me with such a thoughtful look on her face and declared that when she grows up she’d like to be like her big sister (an idol at 12 years old) because she’s not good at just one sport but lots , and because she has so many medals.

My heart flipped…. I thought what a lovely sentiment. She looks up to her big sister how lovely.

Then she finished her gorgeously sweet chat with “but when I’m her age I’ll have the most medals”

Ah healthy competition , the key to all success!!

It’s ok to feel crap , even more ok to make yourself feel better!!

Today I’m feeling really good. I’m happy , content, relaxed. I’m in a good mood. I feel this way the most of the time.

Last week though I had a rotten couple of days. Day one was anxiety ridden. I woke to an anxiety attack – Good Morning indeed! Just for good measure that day was also a school GCSE meeting for the eldest. My anxiety tells me horrid lies so that made the meeting difficult. It told me that everyone else at that meeting was in couples. That I was the youngest parent in that room, that everyone was thinking ‘ooo look at her , she must’ve started young and she’s still not managed to find a husband’ Of course once the anxiety has gone I can see how daft all that thinking is. Of course there were other parents there on their own and what everyone else was probably thinking was ‘Oh bloody hell this GCSE year is going to be a nightmare’

The following day anxiety was replaced with the most horrid low mood-double whammy!!I felt it straight away in the morning. My instinct was to do my hair, make an effort with makeup and a decent outfit. Make everything look ok on the outside so that no one knows what’s going on underneath. My head said push through it, power on. My heart told me to get the kids ready for school, get them out of the door and go back to bed.

That’s exactly what I did.

I feel guilty admitting that. That’s the problem isn’t it?

If I’d have had a migraine I wouldn’t have felt bad for a lie down in a dark room. If I’d sprained my ankle I wouldn’t insist upon running a marathon. If I’d had a sore throat I’d not have felt like a disgraceful human being for sucking on a strepsil. I’d have done what was necessary to feel better so I could get on . Retreating to bed because I felt low though? Was that allowed?

Even though I knew for sure that going to bed, pulling the duvet over my head and napping would make me feel better I felt embarrassed. Seems so daft to feel as though I needed permission to make myself feel better.

I gave myself permission that day. I didn’t fight feeling crap. I wallowed a bit. I had a cry. I looked at Twitter , I lamented the fact that I really needed some physical contact and I had no one to provide it ( because I was never ever going to find anyone who wanted to be with me and I’d probably be on my own for ever and ever…when I self pity I self pity HARD)

You know what a couple hours later I felt better. I got showered and dressed. I tidied up, I got dinner ready. Once the kids got in from school then I felt much, much better. The chaos, the bickering, the noise, the mess absolutely soothed me. I could relax. Normal was back in the shape of 4 grumbly, hungry children. I’d had my time out and was all the better for it. It’s a rarity I feel that down but I did what it took to feel better. I’m very lucky that my periods of anxiety and low mood are short lived these days.

Maybe though if you’re just in a bad mood or you’ve got so much on you’re giving yourself a headache thinking about it. Perhaps if you’re shattered or feeling a bit off colour surely it’s ok to make yourself feel better if that’s at all possible. Let’s face it there are enough times when it’s not.Have 10 mins with a trashy mag and a cuppa, have a power nap , eat the chocolate. Give yourself permission to feel better

The washing up will wait for you, the work you brought home with you will hang on whilst you have a 10 min phone conversation with the person who cheers you up to talk to. The laundry won’t run away (unfortunately) if it’s left half an hour. The kids won’t be messed up for life if they have a chippy tea for one night.

Parenting doesn’t have to be wall to wall martyrdom does it? We should take care of ourselves as well as we do everyone else, or at least almost as well. So if that means taking a bit of time from our busy days to browse twitter and have a wispa? That’s ok!!
Honestly, it really is!!

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Some days…

I can’t be the only one to feel like this but don’t you find social media adds pressure to being a parent?

So much of our life is documented out there. I really don’t think this is a bad thing either I must firstly say. I love social media. (My name is Kelly and one of the first things I do in a morning is check Facebook and Twitter)

There is always that underlying feeling that everyone is doing a better job than you, at parenting, at just being a human sometimes.

I love looking at everyone’s pics of Christmasses and birthdays and family hols, seeing their little people grow. I just have to remind myself this is the edited version of their lives before I crucify myself over the fact we’ve NEVER done Elf on the Shelf. My poor deprived children! The whole beauty of social media I suppose is that we can put ‘out there’ the life we choose to!

Parenting is tricky enough without worrying that you’re not matching up to everyone else. Some days just aren’t parenting perfection.

Some days are rough, but they’re real.

Some days it’s a chippy for tea because I actually can’t be bothered to even think about what to cook for tea, let alone actually cook it.

Some days the answer to the teens “can I wear odd socks?” as they rush past on the way to school is “as long as you don’t have PE”

Some days I hide in my room with my head under the duvet just to get some peace from the chaos.

Some days I tell small girl the park is shut because I simply don’t have another park visit in me.

Some days I forget about computer time limits because the boys are quiet and bringing the elder 3 all in the same room means bickering.

Some days I pour a glass of wine at 6pm, just to look at, as an incentive to get through the witching hours of 6-7:30.

…and all that’s OK.

No matter what we claim on social media, I believe every parent has ‘those days’

Raising humans is hard.

Really bloody hard.

Worth it though.
Worth it for the other days.

Other days I love sitting round the table, chatting over the dinner I’ve cooked from scratch.

Other days little girl and I have jigsawed, had 3 games of Scrabble, made a play-doh cafe and baked a cake before 8am and loved every minute.

Other days the computers are off, we have a board games day and there’s not a crossed word (unless I lose)

Some days we have the most lovely days out and we smile and laugh all day.

These are probably the days I write Facebook status or tweet about and post pics of. I’m as guilty as anyone of editing us – maybe I should be a little more real?

Mind you, I really don’t think anyone needs to hear about my arguing teens, tantruming small girl or hear about my kitchen disasters.
People have all that going on in their own homes don’t they??