Sunday, 1 June 2014

Sunny Sunday

I got all excited this morning when I woke up to sunshine.  I was itching to get down to the beach and soak up some rays.  With one or both of the dogs (only one at a time probably, as the puppy is in season and needs extra supervision at the moment.  Too much information?  Sorry).

Where was I?  Oh yes, I was itching to get up and get going.  Well, that was an hour or two ago, and here I am settling down to type a quick blog entry, still in pyjamas.  Meanwhile, I have cooked bacon sandwiches for myself and my lovely little six year old (it wasn't deliberate favouritism, the others had already eaten breakfast). 

Then I consumed two cups of tea.  Next had a short go at Twitter (got excited again when I saw that Gwyneth Paltrow is now one of my followers, excitement quickly subsided when I realised it was a spoof Gwynnie.  The spoof Gwynnie has sixteen thousand followers though!  That is amazing...)

I like Twitter.  Partly I like it because most people I know are completely flummoxed if I mention that I use it.  They have no idea what it is or how it works, or why on earth anybody would be interested in it.  Which shows that there is an alternative reality out there, peopled by people like me.  Although in theory I only use Twitter for promoting my book or this blog, in practice I really like connecting with people.  And there is all sorts of fascinating  information out there, if you click on the right links or follow the right people.  I am by no means an expert, and sometimes I don't use the site for weeks on end, but I can't imagine my world without Twitter now.

So, as I was leaving Twitter, I checked this blog quickly, and saw that there was a comment from someone asking if I was okay, because I haven't posted for a while. Which was really sweet, so I felt compelled to reply, and then to turn on my proper computer and write this blog post.

So, what should I write about?  Well, I am okay, having had no repeat episodes of what I wrote about last time, which I have come to the conclusion was probably acute indigestion.  Still embarrassed by the panic...  I have been a bit edgy since then, had a couple of wakeful or disturbed nights, so I guess there is an underlying anxiety issue.  Which I am also a bit embarrassed, and a bit confused by, because I tend to think I am fine nowadays.  But I suppose it is possible to suffer from anxiety and still be fine.  It will pass.

It has been half term this week, which probably explains my absence from this blog (although I don't update it as often as I used to anyway).  I have really enjoyed the break, because of the opportunity to spend time with the children.  They are all growing up fast, but for now even the older ones spend the vast majority of their time at home when school is out, and I want to make the most of that.  And although I have been busy doing stuff that doesn't always involve them - I had a massive clear out and took so much stuff to charity shops that it gave me backache - they are here and so we necessarily interact. 

Our two boys love their computer games - they mostly play Lego Marvel on the X-Box.  They play together, which is good, but I have limited their time to half an hour a day for as long as I remember, because I don't want these games to take over their lives.  It often goes over the half an hour, if I am honest, but I always call time at an hour, maximum.  Anyway, in the last few weeks, although the weather has not been great, I have been weaning them off the computer games, taking them out of the house as much as I can and encouraging them to play outside when we are at home.  As a result we have had lots of water fights and nerf gun play going on, as well as old favourites like Twister and lots of noisy games on the trampoline.

And now that their sisters are home they have all been playing together, which I love to see.  Usually the girls spend so much of the day at school, and weekends doing various activities, that their brothers don't get to be with them very often.  And when they are, they just suck up the attention from their big sisters. 

I relish every moment of watching my kids grow up, and feel at my happiest when I am with them.  So I have been ramping up the reading with the youngest (he was reading bits of The Times out loud to me this morning - obviously only the suitable bits, and I helped him with the long words).  I have been practising verbal reasoning with my older boy (I have had some ten minute test books for years, and recently discovered that he absolutely loves doing them).  And as for the girls - well, I just feel lucky to sometimes be included in their talk and laughter and plans and even in their revision (although I must say, participating in their revision is not my favourite bit.  Thank goodness exams will all be over by the end of next week).

I am aware that my smug Mummy factor is far too high, which is why I don't write about the kids on this blog very much.  I am so proud of them all, I just can't write about them impartially and I fear that must be annoying to read.  To be honest, I am not a brilliant Mummy all of the time - for example, I spent a lot more time with the girls when they were little than I do with the boys, because now I am distracted by my writing.  I want to get my writing career off the ground so that the girls see work as something to aspire to.  When they were tiny they both used to say that when they grew up they wanted to be a mummy like me, and although I think that is a wonderful aspiration (and is certainly the part of my life that has given me the greatest happiness) I think it would also be nice for them to play a part in the wider world!  And of course, I think it is good for the boys too, to know that Mummy is not just there to cater exclusively to their needs.  But they do need me to be around. 

I do my best for the kids, I think about them and their welfare constantly.  That is probably partly why I get anxious - because we can't control the future, we can't guarantee that our kids will always be safe and happy.  We can do our best for them though, which means above all spending time with them.  And luckily, it turns out that spending time with one's children is the best, most enjoyable way to spend one's time.  Luckily too, I have Paul to help when I need a break.  (And if any of you are wondering what happened to the poor dogs' walks that I woke up eager to do and then forgot about, he has walked them both, individually, in the past couple of hours while I have been reading the paper and tweeting and blogging.  He's a good man, my husband). 

Anyway, I am going to get up now and get dressed and get on with the day.  I am going to take my elder son to the museum for a couple of hours, something that I have been promising to do with him for ages, and that he is really looking forward to.  Sweet boy that he is, a trip to the museum with a parent all to himself really is the thing he wants most to do in the world. 

Lucky me! 


  1. You sound so happy and this time with your children is indeed preciousl

  2. Thanks Rossa. I am almost always happy at home - it's the wider world that gets to me on occasion! But, yes, I am lucky, I love being a Mum. Hope you are well. I haven't looked at your blog for a little while, I shall do so now.