Why I'm loving September

Yes you heard me, I LOVE September. A fresh new page all round, back to school and a new period in my life begins as I no longer have any pre-school age children at home. 

What will I do with myself? I've busied myself volunteering at both the boys schools parents associations, yes I'm one of those mums who will be badgering other parents non stop for this, that and the other. I'm also going back to my roots with some part-time child care and hopefully some hours at a local nursery. I also have social media management for a magazine to keep me busy as well as writing some editorial for a local aesthetics clinic. All this should keep me sufficiently entertained during school hours and means I can be there for my boys.

I went into a well known high street shop this morning and treated myself to a new notebook in an effort to be more organised, I love nothing better than making and remaking lists, I know I'm well aware I need to get a life, Mr T will be the first to tell me that when he reads this!

It's pouring down today, the first rainy school run called for me to dig out my fave boots from Adele Kelly Boutique a gorgeous shop in my village. They were so comfy and a great alternative to the wellies I first pulled out of the shoe box this morning. 
I've got that Friday feeling in a big way today, Mr T has a half day and will be at home this afternoon, tomorrow we are hosting my youngest's party at Build a Bear, 14 five year olds, what could possibly go wrong?! Wish me luck!!


Hello September

September is my fresh start. September 2017 will see a lot of change in our house. My eldest child turns ten, my youngest starts in reception class, I'm going to become an auntie again and my ex husband, father of my eldest, is moving counties. 

I feel like I am at the very top of a rollercoaster waiting for it all to rush at me at 100 mph. Admittedly I am getting so much better at organisation and taking everything a step at a time but there is still room for anxiety. I feel confident that my youngest will walk into reception without a backwards glance as he is more than ready for the challenge of school. My eldest always finds a new term at school daunting, the autism doesn't help, but with our coping strategies and my mentality on this being just go with it we will get him through it. 

I'll never stop worrying about my little sister. She is a 30 something mum of one, almost two and I know she will sail through her upcoming labour and birth but I still worry about her and want to protect her. 

Finally my eldest child's dad is moving four hours away. This isn't an issue for me but the effect it is having on my son is not great. I won't speak about it too  much but suffice to say we have an interesting time ahead supporting my son.

What does your September hold? 


Goodbye summer holidays you have been...mixed.

There are seven days to go until number one goes back to school. There are 13 days to go until number two starts reception. 

As ever I have spent the past few days and weeks acting as chief children's entertainer, taxi driver, chef, referee and general dogsbody to my two boys. Not being content with requiring endless stimulation both kids have birthdays over the summer so I have that to contend with as well.  The result? Considerable weight gain after stuffing my face with their leftovers washed down with copious glasses of rose wine in the evening. Healthy eating has gone out of the window and so has the routine and rules.

Screen time has increased as well as my food bill. Both kids appear to be just as tired as they were towards the end of the summer term and are both more than ready for more mental exercise than mummy can provide. 

Our Menorcan break seems like a distant memory, the warm weather abroad gave way to a grey August back in Bucks which just seemed to go on forever. A fortnight stay in hospital owing to my hideous bowel issue was not part of the agenda. Mr T had to take command and hat's off to him he did, in fact he was amazing. Fast forward to the bank holiday just gone and we had a little heatwave, bliss. The paddling pool was out and I didn't feel quite so short tempered and impatient as I had been the previous weeks. 

We are now on what feels like the home run of the endless summer break. Uniform has been purchased, stationary chosen, feet measured and millions of pairs of footwear bought. I still don't feel nervous for either of the boys starting back to and at school for the first time. I will be waving them off knowing that they will both be absolutely fine. 

Bring on September, we are more than ready for you! 


Enforced self care

So this week I have survived two days of enforced self care. I am 12 days post laparoscopic surgery and was discharged from hospital two days ago.

So it's a shock being back at home, don't get me wrong it's wonderful and I'm slowly working my way through my emotions of what I have been through and the knock on effect on Mr T and my little T's. I'll come back to that, not quite ready to lift the lid on that on paper as yet.

The day I came out of hospital was fine,  Mr T was here so other than bathe I didn't need to lift a finger. In hospital I spent most of my time sleeping or reading post op and all I had to concern myself with was the hospital daily routine of prodding, poking, ward rounds, being stared at by varying medical experts, food, drink and staggering to the toilet. My usual routine of childcare and what I refer to as 'mum thinking' was stripped of me.

Mr T did an amazing job of being both parents during my absence, this was magnified when child H burst into tears on day one of us flying solo when Mr T returned to work, and demanded we video call daddy as soon as he had a lunch break. I'm so proud of Mr T and his sidekick.

Back to day one at home, a little sore, bowels working a little too effectively to be too far away from my bathroom and a sort of confused feeling of do I feel sick or am I hungry, H and I strung out our day of cartoons, lego construction, snacks and team dozing. H has so much energy, just like any 5 year old and is as bouncy as a puppy if not exercised at least once a day. I still feel a tad fragile to leave the security of chez T so the bottom of the garden is as far as we have ventured.

Roll on the weekend when I have Mr T back. I do feel stronger by the day,  it's all part of the healing process. I don't really do sitting around so this enforced self care feels strange. Slowly slowly I'll return to full strength, I have to I'm a mum on the run.

Have you ever been forced into taking it easy? Did you get cabin fever? How did you cope? Would, as ever, love to hear your experiences.


When storybook characters come alive.

When I was a child I read. I read a lot. In fact I read so much I'd often have two or three novels on the go at one time. Facts and non fiction I was hopeless at retaining, just ask my A level History teacher, but give me a good story and I would be hooked.

In the bath, in the car, instead of homework, on the loo - yes not just men do that and it turns out there's IS an upside to having a slow moving bowel, who knew?

Now I'm all growed up there just isn't the time to read one chapter let alone space in my head to retain the plot lines of three different books. I struggle to remember  what happened on 'Enders last night.

The only things I read currently are 'Peppa bloody Pig goes on holiday' thanks to my five year old or the latest David Walliams aloud to my 9 year old at bedtime. Turns out I do a mean impression of a lady pretending  to be a man pretending to be a lady character, if you know anything about David Walliams you will know what  I'm talking about. If I really am stuck for something to read there are always the six month old stale waiting room magazines in the doctor/hospital/dentist clinics I seem to regularly attend.

As a new early reader I clearly remember bring home my first reading book from reception class. I found my reception classroom to be terrifying.  I hated being left anywhere so my anxiety levels were through the roof when I started school. What didn't help was my teacher the curiously named Mrs Constable-Barrett, try writing that on the front of your worksheets when five or six years of age, had a thing for taxidermy. As far as the eye could see on various shelves, windowsills and desks sat a variety of stuffed woodland creatures. The freaked the bejesus out of me and the only section of the entire double room classroom that wasn't adorned with stuffed owls, pheasants,  kestrels and the like was the book corner which was my save place in a classroom full of dead animals and shouty very confident other children.

Back to my first reading book. It was entitled 'Look'. Five pages of ridiculously happy people wearing fluorescent outfits (it was the 80s) pointing at objects yelling 'LOOK' once per page. No wonder it remains in my head. That and the stuffed animals. I got to take that book home every evening for a whole week, before I moved up a level.

As I learned to read I discovered so many wonderful authors, Enid Blyton for the
boarding school classics and the adventurous Famous Five, Jill Murphy for the Worst Witchford and Roald Dahl for just about everything!

Any book that featured a boarding school I lapped up, I never would have had been sent to boarding school but i always thought it would be such fun, midnight feasts, tuck boxes, fancy uniforms, travelling to each others houses for adventures during the holidays, writing home and getting good a parcel of goodies in return. I would get so lost in these stories.

I Throughout my life many characters I met in these books seemed to turn into real life people. When I was given extra tutoring for my A level History exam the tutor turned out to be a replica of how I had imagined Uncle Quentin the world famous scientist and quick tempered father of George in the Famous Five series. I forget his actual name Dr something or other, he would appear every Thursday for an hour with a pile of musty old history books that I wasn't the slightest bit interested in and I would sit there bored brainless wishing I was stuck into one of my three titles I had on the go. He was the just as i imagined Uncle Quentin to be, forgetful with practicalities, but full of knowledge at the click of a finger at any period of history. Moody and very awkward, never made eye contact and smelled as musty as his books. Probably slept among them I thought.

During one of my hospital stays I met Miss Hardbroom from the Worst Witch series. She was the terrifyingly strict form mistress of the main characters, Maude,  Enid and Ethel. In my head she was stick thin with elbows that could cut glass and fingers long and pointy with nails so sharp they could pick a lock. Groomed slick hair glued back in a Croydon face-lift with dark eyes and lips. Miss Hardbroom appeared in the former of a night nurse charged to look after all the patients on my ward. She appeared as if from nowhere at the side of my bed as if in a silent puff of green smoke with her pointy nose, crooked teeth whispering 'medication time...' if i had been able to I would have dived under the covers and hoped it was all a nightmare but I couldn't as was still in pain from my surgery. In fact despite looking exactly as I had imagined Miss Hardbroom to be, she was nothing like her, turns out she was the  nicest nurse I'd met during my stay and couldn't do enough for me, reminding me never to provide judge a book, or person by their cover. A cliché but true.

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