Tag Archives: summer

We ❤ Wimbledon – but it turns us a bit nuts!!

We really look forward to Wimbledon in this house , a lot. Well the two boys and I do anyway. I think the girls just like that it signals close to school hols time and I put on snacks for big matches. 

There’s also , for me , the added bonus of Andy Murray. 

Now anyone who has ever followed me on social media or in fact ever spoken to me is probably a tiny bit aware of my utter adoration for the guy. The crush is all encompassing. So that adds to the excitement! 

So we do love Wimbledon,but here’s how it turns us into total oddballs!!

We get delusions of grandeur

We talk about going to Wimbledon ‘one day’. Probably to the final. In the royal box no doubt, hanging with the young royals. Maybe I’ll be married to Harry by then – he probably has a thing for fellow redheads ,older women and commoners ….see what I mean? Delusional!

Realistically we’d likely only get to go to Pauper’s Sunday or whatever they call it.

The cost of men’s final tickets for all 5 of us plus strawberries and cream and my Pimms bar bill,well I’d have to sell a kidney!

We think we rock at tennis

Our nice weather activity,as a family,is going off to play tennis on the local tennis courts. Now with 3 teenagers ANYTHING that everyone agrees to do without a fuss , especially outside I have to take as a win and encourage wholeheartedly.

The thing is we are enthusiastic but we’ve no skills. In fact that line could apply to most sports undertaken by the boys and I. We try our best at sporting activities,our heart is truly in it but we’ve limited skills. The girls are the sporty ones in our house.

So as you can imagine our tennis matches are very stop start. Rallys of more than 3 are huge achievements and hitting the ball on a first serve makes us believe we are up for Sports Personality of the Year.

Mum dresses even weirder

We all know my dress sense is one entitled “have you not bought clothes since 1998?” I can’t help it , I’ll never be cool and trendy. I’m ok with that. Tennis season though I step it up a notch. I LOVE tennis dresses! They’re so cute and so summery and probably 18 years ago pre-children they maybe suited me. Now? Not so much. Stretchy material is no great look for a woman in her mid 30’s (yes 37 is mid ,hush!) with 4 kids!

I also have a white pleated tennis skirt my sister gave me years back that I wear to play in. I mean business, I look a fool but who cares?? Possibly the kids but who’s asking them?!!

Tennis snacks become a thing

Football snacks are a big deal in this house. On a big game day all the big guns are brought out : Nachos , pizza , wings.

I tried dragging the same snacks out for the big Wimbledon matches but the kids though maybe tennis snacks should be a bit more refined (we are big on themed dinners in our house- I made a rod for my own back years ago with that one!)

So refined snackery it is! Tennis snacks became sandwiches minus crusts and cake . Basically afternoon tea accompanied by fake (obviously alcohol free) Pimms.

I contemplate tennis lessons

Ultimate female mid life crisis cliché isn’t it? The stuff of dodgy Mills and Boons stories…. frustrated woman takes tennis lessons and is seduced by hot young tennis instructor!! Ooo actually maybe I’m being too hasty in ruling it out.

The reason I don’t go through with my tennis lessons notions though is for a whole other reason. It’s because I cannot stand being rubbish at something. I get frustrated at not being able to pick up a skill instantly and I’m an awful bad loser.

It’d be McEnroe esque carnage!!!

So roll on summer.

We love Wimbledon.

I love my quirky family.

Come on Andy Murray *swoons*



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Summer holiday sentence bingo! ! 

Summer hols are here! (well almost, just one more week small girl) 

The holidays are great but they do get a bit..well..repetitive. 

There are certain phrases that pop out of your mouth, likely repeatedly, during the coming weeks. Tick them off as you go. First one to get a full house is declared Champion of Summer. 

“You’ve just had your breakfast /dinner /tea”

Usually a response to yet another cry of “I’m hungry”. Does anyone else think this is just a default sentence they utter when they’ve nothing else to say?? Has to be some kind of programming default.

 
“Tidy your room then”

Direct answer to either “I’m bored” or “there’s nothing to do”. It’s a classic mum line – been around generations and is really effective in getting them to entertain themselves rather than risk having to tidy. My dad’s response to the “I’m bored ” line was always “only boring people get bored Kelly” which really didn’t pack the same punch. 

“We’ll do that next week “

A reply to requests to go to soft play /bowling /a park that’s not a stone’s throw away from your house. It is almost certainly a lie. 

” We’ve ice lollies at home “

Usually muttered in the shop 2 seconds away from home when the little treasures  want you to spend £2 on a Fab. Get real kids I can get 170 from Aldi with that. 

Why don’t you put your shorts on? “

Suggested to the teens when you manage to drag them away from their screens to go out, the sun is blazing yet there they are in jeans and hoodies. Your shorts idea is likely to be met with an eye roll. 

to get some fresh air “

Another one for the teens. A response to the question” Why do we have to come? ” when you’re dragging them away from the x-box. Another classic mum line.

 
Let’s go to the park “

Said on repeat near the end of the holidays when you’ve spent a million pounds on ice-cream and day trips and are just grateful for a free activity. 

If you don’t behave we are going nowhere “

Said when you’re about to go out for the day and spend the afore mentioned million pounds. You’re trying to get organised and have asked for no help from anyone except to hush and let you get on with it. Yet the kids are still bickering and fighting and generally being pains. JUST STOP KICKING YOUR BROTHER WHILST I FIND THE SUNCREAM. 

Let’s have a movie day”

Translation :I’m fed up of the holidays now. I’m exhausted I’m sick of you lot arguing and whinging and quite frankly I don’t want to get dressed today. Let’s lounge on the sofa, watch talking chipmunks and call popcorn breakfast. I. Am. Done. 

I bloody LOVE the summer holidays “

This line is reserved for the golden week of the hols. The magic week. The week to end all weeks. All 4 kids are on holiday – without me! ! Crack open the prosecco, get out the family size fruit and nut, put on all the trashy TV you’ve been recording in anticipation of this moment – perfection! 

Happy holidays everyone! 

Xxx

10 signs the end of the school year is nigh…

It’s July, the summer hols are a stones throw away and don’t we know it. Here are some signs that you’re coming to the end of the school year.

1) EVERYONE (including you) is tired and grumpy.

No one wants to get up in a morning, no one wants to talk about their day. There’s a distinct feeling of ‘let’s just get these last few weeks out the way and go back to being human.

2) You let the kids go to school as though they’re extras from Oliver!
Remember September when everyone looked sooo sparkly and smart and lovely. Cut to July. Shirts are greying, ink stains are ignored, trousers are definitely a bit short. Am I going to spend cash on a new blazer that likely won’t fit by September though? Am I hell as like!

3) School keep asking for stuff.
Summer fete brick a brac (that the kids then buy and bring back home), cakes, spare uniform you no longer need, your purse, your soul. OK just feels like the last two…

4) Back to School displays are already in the shops!
Give us a break could you! Let us forget that at some point we’re going to have to do the dreaded school uniform shop.

5) You’re bombarded with ‘work’
I’m using the word work in it’s loosest term here. The younger the kids are the worse this is. EVERYTHING your little darling has ever scrawled their initial on is coming to your house. You may think you’re getting a toilet roll – but you dare roll your eyes at the sheer mountain of junk this child has in their arms and you will be accused of not loving their work… and therefore not loving them… and therefore being the worst parent ever.. Just smile at the toilet roll for goodness sakes!!

6) You daren’t spend a single penny.
School hols cost a bloody fortune. Even if you’re not taking them on holiday or don’t have a rota of fun days out planned. Why do kids insist on eating 20 meals a day in holiday time?? So be prepared. Use July to save for the summer holidays, by not leaving the house… Or eating.

7) As a parent you begin to go out of your mind.
This, I admit, could just be me. I start to become nagging, whingy, irritable mum in July. I’m done with organised, I’m done with motivation. I’m just ready to spend time with my children with the pressure off… Which leads to..

8) You view the summer hols through rose tinted spectacles.
I love the summer holidays, honestly I do. The freedom to do what we want for over a month is fantastic (yes, yes also the kids go on hols with grandma which helps) but at this time of year, when you’re school weary you make great plans for amazing days out and family trips and you know you’ll have so much fun. Which you will, but don’t beat yourself up if you’ve declared pj day twice by week two.

9) Teacher gifts drive you nuts.
Smallest girl is a craft fan. I suggested she made gifts in reception class and it has stuck. Every year now she wants to make personalised gifts, which is lovely and thoughtful… and time consuming and expensive and hard work and “PLEASE can we just buy a box of Quality Street?”

10) You despair that these children insist on getting too old too quick
Whether it’s last day of pre-school or last day of actual school… ever. The end of the school year makes you realise that these people, these children that came out of your actual body are growing up and getting more and more independent. It’s tough it really is.
Fellow parents, I wish you a summer full of memory making, not having to sell a kidney to fund the ice cream run, minimal sibling bickering and at least a bit of sun!

 


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Naptime Natter

The good things about being single in the summer…

Now I know I wrote about how I think I could maybe possibly deal with a bit of  summer romance , you can read that just here.

However should I more likely find myself a summer singleton that’s ok. It has it’s advantages- it does honestly. Let me try to sell it to you.

1) No extra sweaty bodies in your bed

I don’t know about you but when it’s a really hot night , I can only just about put up with my own hot sweaty body in my bed. I definitely do not want another, especially if they are a  cuddler…yuk!

 

2)Solo sun time is fun!!

It is!!! OK I grant you , sat picnicking alone would make you look like you’ve never quite grown out of the imaginary friend stage. Spending the afternoon in a beer garden on your lonesome may get you  few odd looks. However sitting in the sunshine somewhere pretty with a good book is one of life’s little pleasures.If you really want a treat pack a gin in a tin too! I won’t judge

 

3)You don’t have to ‘make an effort’ if you don’t want

When you’re seeing someone you kinda feel obliged to look nice. Summertime though for me I don’t really want to be worrying about doing my hair or wearing make up. I want to tie my hair back ,leave my increasingly freckly face bare and off I go not having to worry about giving someone a fright.

 

4)You don’t have to join in someone else’s social life

Summer is barbeque season. Nothing better than the epic combo of beer , burger and great company in the sun. If you’re all loved up that’s going to feel even better I’m sure. The only problem is , as part of a couple you have to do all this stuff with your other half’s friends and family too. Their friends might be a bunch of knobs. You know where you stand with your own.

 

5)Ice lollies

You know when you really , really fancy someone and your gaze falls over them often as you marvel at their beauty? Well I’m telling you now even Becks himself , king of sex would put you off slurping on a twister ( NOT a euphemism) Ice lollies are the work of the devil himself – when other people are eating them I mean. I’m quite fond of a mini milk myself (STILL not a euphemism) The slurping , the sucking , the dribbling …urgh. Enough to destroy any budding relationship. Also a little glimpse into why I am still single!

 

Summer singledom isn’t so bad. As a silver lining finding kind of girl I’m going to embrace it. Spending summer with people I actually like, sleeping alone and being able to dribble ice lolly down my cleavage all I like!

Course if the Mr Perfect Summer Boyfriend rocks up, don’t hold me to these words! Well except the ice lolly one *shudder*

 

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Rhyming with Wine

 

The Summer boyfriend plan..

Being single suits me, I quite like it. In the main I’m a bit of a solitude loving kind of girl.

When the sun is shining though, it even manages to thaw my icy heart a little and my mind wanders to thoughts of a bit of romance. Handholding on a gorgeous summer stroll, snogging in the sunshine.

It’s all a guy in Wales fault. Can I bore you with that story?
One summer we were holidaying in Wales, my eyes wandered to a picturesque stream with the background of stunning Welsh hills. There by the stream was a picnic going on. A romantic picnic for two. This guy had gone all out. Beautiful picnic basket, lovely blanket, the perfect surroundings. The food was laid out like a feast of cooked meats and various salads. He’d baked the bread that morning with his bare hands (OK I’ve made that bit up but I bet he did. Kneaded it with love) Champagne in the ice bucket. Just perfect. Anyway it touched even me miss perma – single sceptical ice maiden. I actually thought aaaww

So the sunshine now does make me think I could do the summer romance. I’d quite like Mr super picnic himself but he seemed to be taken. I mean given my track record I’d find a guy who thought a dairylea sandwich in a car park the height of romance, but we’ll see.

So I’m leaving a gap for the summer romance although a boyfriend is JUST for the summer DEFINITELY not for life (yeah I know bit weird – I’ve intimacy issues leave me be)

I think it’s a good plan for a love – phobe like me.

My kids are away for 2 blocks of a week at a time during the hols, summer boyfriend could be like a little hobby to keep me busy.

Obviously there’d be strict parameters.
No love stuff
No wanting to be around me ALL the time.
A very strict end point, say 1st Sept? Where we can shake hands, say thanks for a lovely summer and leave it there.
Just beer gardens, picnics and bbq’s, sweetness and niceness and all that stuff

Infallible plan don’t you think?

Now, just to locate a hot, funny guy with impeccable manners and similar commitment issues… Shouldn’t be too hard..

If it doesn’t work here’s why it’s great to be single in summer , never let it be said I don’t cover all angles!

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Sunshine is magic!!


Really it is!

In fact sunshine is like my very own fairy godmother. Instead of changing pumpkins into coaches though it takes some of the dodgier, dull aspects of my personality and shines them up making me a little brighter than I once was.

I don’t think I’m alone in this either. Everyone is more smiley in the sun. Can I share with you though how sunshine magically transforms me into a totally new woman??

When it’s sunny…

I believe anything is possible
I’m pretty optimistic at the best of times. I can silver line the hell out of most situations – annoyingly so. Add sunshine though and DING!! (insert own fairy godmother magic wand sound here!) My dreams are bigger and they feel do able. In the sun over the weekend I pulled some of my ‘book ideas’ sat abandoned in notebooks together. I was feeling like why can’t I write a book? Rather than who would want to read my nonsense as I often do.

I become a more inventive parent
We’re quite set in our ways here. We eat the same dinners on a fortnightly loop, we tend to visit the same places on days out, we watch the same TV shows.. but – DING (you remember.. the magic wand?) and before you know it I’m scouring the Internet for summer dinner recipes and picnic ideas. I made my own flat breads and lamb kebabs today! A brand new dinner. Go me! I find new places to visits and events we might like to go to. I think summer mum me is better and certainly way more happy giddy than winter mum me!!

I become exercise girl
You know how I am. I’ll sit on my arse eating chips whilst whinging about putting on weight yet do absolutely nothing about it. I sit and think about exercise but never quite get around to doing anything other than lamenting not appreciating my size 8 days… but DING !!!
Sun’s out – running gear is out. I actually like running you know when I’m doing it. It’s just the thought that puts me off. I’m very much a fair weather exerciser, I’ve ran twice the past week and am getting back into my summer routine of walking everywhere instead of the train or bus! I mean, I still expect to lose half a stone every time I break into a sweat but even sunshine has it’s limitations I guess!

I contemplate boyfriend stuff!!
This is the weirdest one.
You know how I’m steadfastly single, I enjoy my own company have no interest in the love stuff?? Well DING!!
This cold hearted ice maiden here starts to get a bit slushy. I start to quite fancy one of those boyfriend shaped people. I start to think of would it be actually quite nice to do things in the sun with another human (not those kind of things you filthy lot!)
Don’t worry too much, I’ve not totally lost the plot. There are still very strict parameters in place for the boyfriend (happy to just see me once a month, PROMISES to not start with love stuff and isn’t needy-yes yes, still work to do I know)
The boyfriend would not be for life but just for summer. Beer gardens and snogging. Strict September expiry date. He’d be easy to find I know it! Lucky, lucky boy!!

So yes sunshine is magic.
Crack open the pimms, get your sundress on, hell even paint your toenails if you’re feeling fancy and enjoy the magic of the sun.

Let’s face it, the grey rainy days are never far away!!

Ah.. Summer… The daydream v the reality

It’s sunny today. Not just that, it’s actually warm too. Summer must be on it’s way. I bloody love summer, especially when school is out and I get the kids to myself in the sunshine and we all have so much fun making memories…. Or something like that in my giddy head anyway. Doesn’t always quite pan out that way…

Picnics!
Daydream: We’re all going to head out somewhere picturesque, we’re going to eat the yummiest of foods (made from scratch with my own fair hands of course). We’ll play football and cricket and have one of those days that shall be treasured forever.

Reality : Wasps. Spoilers of all picnics ever. You cannot enjoy the lovingly made yummy food when you’re having to jump up and run for your life every 5 minutes. Not to mention telling the kids to stay calm and not to flap whilst simultaneously flapping your arse off! Then working out how to dump the entire picnic in the bin so you can get indoors. Away from the outside, away from sunshine and away from the stripy insects of doom!

 

Camping
Daydream : I’m going to get a big tent and we’re going to spend our weekends under the stars. Good old fashioned family bonding time. No games consoles, no tablets just the kids and I and scrabble and chat.

Reality : I hate camping. How could I possibly forget how much I bloody hate bloody camping?! I like actual beds with actual pillows and an actual duvet. I love a real cooker and am very much a fan of roofs! Scrabble is shit too. I’ve lost to the 7 year old 3 times in a row now, I cannot cope with this. Did anyone pack the tablets?
Anyone know the WiFi code for this field???

 

Tennis
Daydream : This one takes place just after Wimbledon usually. We’ll go play tennis all of us. Nice family game of tennis. Hair up in high ponytail, tennis dress on – let’s go. I reckon if we practice hard enough by the end of the summer we’ll all be borderline professionals and I’ll have legs like Sharapova!

Reality : “Mum. Tell him that was out”
“I’m not playing against her”
“It’s 40-30 NOT deuce”
“mum, tell her to serve properly ”
” I’m too hot ”
” I’m hungry”
“I’ve hurt my foot ”
… and STILL I don’t have Sharapova’s legs..

 

 

The beach
Daydream : I bloody love the beach. Kids playing on the sand, me sunbathing with a trashy mag. A stroll along the seafront with chips, maybe an ice cream. It’s going to be so lovely.

Reality : We live more than an hour train ride from the beach. Loads of bags, loads of kids, loads of stress and that’s just the journey. It’s OK though it’ll still be a lovely day.
Ah-unpack onto the sand- chuck a bucket and spade at the kids. Get out my magazine… relax…
Oh my, who just kicked sand in my eye?
Why is that football travelling towards my head at speed.
Oh and don’t even get me started about the wasps…

Do love summer though… Honestly !
Here’s to disastrous days and and pandemonium filled Picnics!!

 


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