I have rather neglected this blog over the last few months, we’ve just been so busy that I haven’t found the time to sit down and write anything meaningful that is specifically for this place. As you’ve noticed, I’ve kept it slowly treading water by posting by Express and Echo columns but unfortunately, other things have taken priority. But finally, I feel like I might have found a day or two to pause and reflect on the summer. Or rather, I’ve chosen to make the time to sit down and write rather than do some of the other bits and pieces that usually consume my rare childfree hours (usually exercise or housework but Dan is doing the washing up as we speak and I’m exhausted so having a night or two off working out).
In fact so busy have we been that a small milestone has come and gone. Elijah turned six months on Friday. Six months. I know I say it often, but I genuinely have no idea how half a year can just have happened so quickly. I feel like simultaneously we’ve done so much and yet, I feel like I should have been doing more, especially in terms of education for Sophia. But September marks a new academic year and we’ll start afresh then (I’ll write about our plans in another post), hopefully with a bit more structure than the last several months have afforded. I’m not beating myself up though, I know that she is performing well ‘academically’ and has a rich and varied social life and is only five. Five years young. Adapting to being a family of five took a bit of time and adjustment for all of us as we all carved out new spaces for ourselves and that’s ok. But I digress, apologies. Still…six months! Look at this little fellow, he’s just so big and beautiful and brings us all so much joy every day!
So what’s been keeping us so busy? Despite the mixed bag of weather that the British summer has brought us, we’ve managed to fit in a lot. We’ve been camping five times for various occasions, had many many beach trips, a brief stay in Dartmouth,been to two music festivals, spent a lot of time spent in the glorious Topsham pool, had picnics, playdates and rambling walks. On top of that, I’ve been writing my column, doing some social media work (a challenging new venture for me) and working on an article that I’m hoping to submit to the Green Parent magazine. Definitely time to pause.
This afternoon I was feeling grotty post Beautiful Days festival-ing and the kids were restless so after much procrastination I bundled us all out of the door and went for a bike ride (well they rode, I pushed Eli in buggy). I spent the first 20 minutes grumbling in my head. I was tired, my body ached, I wanted to be home in bed, alone, curled up with a good book and a cup of tea! But as the kids raced ahead and I plodded behind, the fresh air did it’s magic and I started to feel rejuvenated. By the time we were halfway to Exton, shock horror, I was actually enjoying myself! We stopped so Elijah could feed and the kids feasted on juicy blackberries that, as Sophia said, just exploded! I felt happy and peaceful. You really can’t beat a bit of time outside in nature, a walk and some spontaneous foraging to lift the spirits and relax.
So I’m choosing to pause this week. To not try and fit in too much but just to go with the flow, to stop nagging, to relax and enjoy time with the kids, instead of wishing away the day until bedtime, then trying to fit in as much as possible before falling into bed, wound up from my own doing. Dan often says that I have a habit of getting a ‘mission head’ on. There is a time and place to be on a mission but I suspect I’ve got into the habit of donning that hat when it just isn’t necessary. I don’t want life to be a regimented mission, planned to the nth degree, I want it to be an adventure, an amble, an exploration of all that is beautiful and interesting.