Monday, 3 December 2012

I'm Still Their Mum

A strange thing has happened to me this term.

I have looked forward to Jonah starting reception for a long time. 11 years at home with littlies is a life sentence, oops, I mean an absolute pleasure. I was so looking forward to having more time and kept using the phrase 'I'm getting my life back again'. I filled my child-free time with my job and with other important tasks and felt very important about myself.

Finally I was doing something rewarding and for which I could see real results.

But then it all went wrong.

Overloading myself with too many 'important tasks' meant that my family was suffering. I began to see the boys as an 'inconvenience' because when they were there I couldn't be busying myself with all my other 'important tasks'. Fighting brought on by boredom reached an all time high. I couldn't understand where we were going wrong. Nothing had changed, had it?

And then the realisation hit me.

I was the one who had changed. I was trying to be someone that I'm not. Selfishly, I was trying to have a 'life' that did not include my family. I cooked for them and we still played together, but my heart wasn't in it. I was trying to do more 'important tasks'. I had, dangerously, slipped into this without even realising.

Slowly, it dawned on me that my boys are my most 'important task'. They might all be at school now, but I'm still their Mum and they still need me. No, there is no status or recognition involved in raising children but it is absolutely the most important 'task' I will ever do. Nothing else even comes close. So, whilst I may still be busy with my job and all the other things I do, they have to come second to being a mum to my boys. They won't be here forever. There will be plenty of time for all those other things that I want to do. At the moment my job and my priority is to be the best mum I can be for my children, and other things will have to wait. Practically, this means that when they are at home, I am at home with them and so is my brain and my heart. After school, instead of constant fighting and arguing, I want to give them my time. At weekends we need to plan in memory making times together again. We used to be so good at this, but I have slipped into finding more 'important' things to do with my time and my brain. I want to enjoy my children again. I want to have fun and hear them laugh. I want to make the most of the time we have at home with them. I don't want to take them out just so that they can run off energy and give me a quieter life, I want to take them out because we enjoy going out together. I want to have time to plan special things for them and see their faces light up. I want to speak to them in their love languages so that they know how much I really do love them. I don't want them to ever feel like an 'inconvenience' to my all important selfish life.

So, my challenge for this Christmas, and into the new year, is to put my family first. Despite having a life that is always busy and could always suck more from me, they have been given to me for this season of my life and I need to do my best for them and with them.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Ice, Ice Baby - The Results!

And they worked (mostly)!

Here are the results of our ice sculptures, created yesterday and left out overnight.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Ice, Ice Baby....

Oh yes, I'm ashamed to admit it but Vanilla Ice was my era.... Anyway, leaving all that aside we have had some fun with ice today which I thought I would share with you in case you wanted to have the same fun too.

This morning we woke up to a covering of frost, and some fun ice in the garden just waiting to be smashed. I don't really understand it myself, but my boys absolutely love ice. I don't like being cold and wet (bah humbug) but they really enjoy discovering the different shapes in which ice has formed, and if it's smashable then even better.

So we decided to make some ice sculptures. We've done different experiments and left them outside - in the morning we'll discover which sculptures have worked!

We half filled some plastic cups with water and added food colouring. That was messy fun.

We surrounded some biscuit cutters with playdough and filled them with water.

And we filled some balloons with water and hung them on the washing line.

These will all be left out overnight and hopefully in the morning we'll have some ice scupltures! It's very easy - you could try it too if you fancied.

Of course, we also (and yes, Max is wearing a t shirt in extremely cold weather - I have no comment to make on that matter) found some nice blocks of ice perfect for smashing.

What a smashing time was had by all.