Almost New Year’s Resolutions…
Slightly late to the party but Happy New Year (how long can you keep saying that for…am I still within the time limit?)
Have been thinking about what to write about for my first post-New Year blog…what better way to start the year than New Year’s resolutions? A thing I normally never do, never make and rarely stick to if I have made them.
Typically, I don’t make promises at the beginning of the New Year. Or start diets on a Monday. My theory is that if I want to commit to doing something then it shouldn’t matter when in the year or what day of the week it is.
Don’t know if it’s having children but this year I’ve found myself thinking “I really should do this…” or “I must remember to….” and so far I haven’t “done” or “remembered” to do very much at all.
Apparently, a lot of New Year’s Resolutions fail as the goals are unrealistic. Other reasons include because people don’t keep track of them or simply forget about them.
So hopefully by writing them down, making them achievable and sharing them with you it might help me to stick to them.
Do you have any? What are they? These are my own top 3 (list number 2 - the first list was almost: 1. Eat more chocolate 2. Do less housework 3. Let the kids watch more TV...certainly achievable but not sure how practical!):
1. Take the kids to the library…..This is a shocker. It’s only around the corner, they love books and I’m there every week for a story time that I run but (ahem confession time!) I haven’t taken myown children since the oldest was about 9months. Libraries are lovely places for children and quite often run activities for children such as singing session for little ones, Lego clubs, treasure trails and much more. I’ve taken the first step and now got a library card so watch this space
2. Walk more. I am sooooooooo lazy when it comes to exercise. Find it so much easier to hop in the car or get the bus. The silly thing is when I do walk I really enjoy it and so do the kids.
3. Make more of an effort to spend time with friends. It’s so easy to stay at home or not invite people round because your knackered from being up with the kids in the night, housework, normal work etc. I miss girly nights and (can I be really honest?) chat that isn’t just related to the children. It’s so important to have time that’s not family related. Went for lunch with a friend the other day and realised how good for the soul it was!
Good luck with yours! Would love to hear about them. Please let us know how you’re getting on!
Let today be the start of something new…
Hello again! Think I need a lot of strong coffee today. Last night was pretty interesting and Julia Donaldson has a lot to answer for…got woken up at 1.30am by my 3-year-old who was demanding “Gruffalo Stew!”.
On a different note it looks like it’s been another busy month for Motherwell Cheshire. I loved the inspirational “Let Today Be the Start of Something New” motto on the Facebook page.
It really got me thinking. Thinking it’s about time I pulled my finger out and started to do something that wasn’t just about the kids, husband or home. Something that was just for me. That’s why I started writing the blog, poetry and stories back in the summer and I do really enjoy doing this but also felt it was important after 3 years to get properly out and about again. Start feeling like a human being, who has hobbies and interests (as much as I love my family dearly!).
I've volunteered to help at a kids’ literature festival for next year. Still child-related and it might seem a trivial step for some but it’s something I’m passionate about and think I’d really enjoy.
Even though it’s at the early stages of the application, it felt liberating to have a conversation on the phone with someone who wasn’t just talking to me as a mum. Talking to me as someone with thoughts and ideas and opinions that don’t relate to “what are we having for dinner tonight?” or “how shall I entertain the children today?”. I just bit the bullet and emailed the organisers without trying to overthink “Will I have the skills they’re looking for?” or “Am I good enough for the role?” and “What happens if they call me and I get nervous about what to say and end up sounding like a jibbering wreck?”
Guess what? I spoke with the person and they were friendly, we even had a laugh and I’m really looking forward to the next steps. It’s easy as mums to forget how we were pre-kids.
Easy to forget that there’s a world out there where we can occasionally be a little bit selfish and do something just because it makes us feel good and we enjoy it for enjoyment’s sake. It’s sometimes hard to find the time, with noses to be wiped, dinner to make, tantrums to tend to… but read (or even write!) a book, meet with friends, join a group, do your nails, shut your eyes for 5min when the kids are in bed and listen to your favourite song.
Parenting can be one of most the difficult, stressful jobs in the world which is why sometimes you need a bit of time to just be you.
Even if it’s just for five minutes! Would love to hear what makes you sparkle?
Well where to start? Firstly, thanks to Motherwell for the opportunity to write for and support this much needed charity.
Having had tricky end of pregnancies (pre-eclampsia both times – my first born was 6 weeks early), I’m a big fan of any groups and organisations that give a helping hand to mothers and parents. It doesn’t matter how old the kids are – they don’t seem to come with instruction manuals and they’re never the same child twice!
Teething with my youngest is a very different (and more exhausting!) experience then it was with my 3-year- old. Anyhow, we’re getting there.
I think one of the most important things is to try and remember to have fun along the way. Not always the easiest thing to do when you’re ratty from no sleep, pressures of day to day life, rushing to work etc etc.
At the moment our silly time comes in the form of Paw Patrol. I kid you not, my husband took my eldest son to football on Saturday and was told “Chase! Chase! I need you Chase! Come and help me…. Skye and Rubble are at home, so you have to help me!” It also helps when I need him to do something (the 3-year- old not my husband!) “Ryder – I have an important mission for you!! You need to get in the car, so we can rescue the cat….” Bonkers but it works for us.
My own escapism comes through books, story writing and encouraging children to use their imagination. I loved books as a child and think it’s so important to get kids into reading.
Not necessarily just for the academic side of things and the doors reading can open but because of the fun and joy that comes from reading a good book. Picture books, fiction, fact books (we’re looking at a lot of pictures of trains at the moment!) It also doesn’t matter how old the child is. In fact, they say the younger the better, even from birth.
This link is quite helpful: http://readtoyourbaby.com/read_literacy.html
There are so many worlds that can be accessed through books: The Gruffalo, Green Eggs and Ham, Mr Men books, the Beatrix Potter series and many more. Books bring out not only a wide range of vocabulary but an imagination and curiosity in children. There’s something special about seeing your child looking at some of the same books you did when you were young and loving them all over again!
Next week in partnership with South Cheshire College and Mid Cheshire College, we are starting photoshoots for our #thismumcanshine campaign.
The photoshoot is for a calendar to raise funds for Motherwell. Each month there will be a group of mums that we support, such as teen mums, LGBT mums, alternative mums, natural mums etc etc. It will also have a page of the fab Motherwell team and also Motherwell Mums!
But the most important part of the photo shoot is to start our #thismumcanshine campaign.
There are 2 strands to this campaign. I really want to show that mums can come from all lifestyles and have different approaches to parenting, but this doesn’t make any one approach better than another. I love the fact that each individual is unique and how a mum decides to bring up her family is no business of anyone else.
The second part of this campaign is to inspire and empower. A lot of Motherwell’s work is working with mums with mental health issues, many suffering from low self-esteem and self-worth since becoming a mum. The campaign will show how some of our mums have been able to get through the difficult times and gone on to achieve as a parent and have thriving children.
My key message I want to get across is don’t judge others, we are all unique.
A key message that I use a lot with Motherwell is “when women support each other great things happen”
I see this daily. The groups that we run at Motherwell have women from all walks of life with their own story to bring, but every time I am humbled by how they all want to support each other and all want each other to move on in their lives.
I can’t finish this blog without mentioning my team, Motherwell manages to support so many mums due to a team of dedicated volunteers all who want to support other mums, as the whole team know the difficulties that local mums face.
I hope many of you take part in our campaign and most importantly I hope you are all inspired to shine #thismumcanshine